June 1943 (1)

Japanese artillery on Attu, 1943 Property of Univ. of Washington, Special Collections.

Japanese artillery on Attu, 1943
Property of Univ. of Washington, Special Collections.

5 June – On the home front of Japan, Admiral Yamamoto received a full state funeral in Tokyo.   Germany honored him by awarding the Knight’s Cross w/ Oakleaves and Swords as the island nation mourned.  The Japanese people were told that his plane crashed due to mechanical failure.

7 June – a major aerial battle around the Russell Islands occurred.  The US aircraft shot down 19 Japanese fighters out of the 40 attackers.

Solomon-H44NT-Map

7-16 June – the Japanese air sorties over the Solomon Islands became increasingly costly for the enemy in the terms of aircraft and pilots.  Over Guadalcanal, the 307th Bombardment Group cost Japan 23 planes and the US had 9 downed.  On the 12th, the kill-to-loss ratio widened as Japan lost 31 to the 6 American.  By the 16th, the total destruction of 107 Japanese aircraft was reached out of the 120 available planes in the area.

No. 14 Fighter Squadron

No. 14 Fighter Squadron

The Royal New Zealand Air Force, (RNZAF), sent No. 14 Fighter Squadron Squadron to join in the Solomon campaign and arrived just before another major Japanese raid on 12 June, claiming 8 victories.  On the 16th, over Savo Island, they downed 5 enemy planes in a dog fight.

Geoff Fisken, No. 14 Fighter Squadron

Geoff Fisken, No. 14 Fighter Squadron

8-24 June – the Japanese high command deemed Alaska irrelevant and ordered their troops to abandon Kiska Island.  The fall of Attu had brought outspoken criticism of the Imperial HQ by high-ranking Navy officers.  Now, the Kuril Islands would need to be fortified and manned.  This would divert fresh troops and supplies from the beleaguered areas in the south.

Kuril Islands stretching from Japan to

Kuril Islands stretching from Japan to the Kamchatka Peninsula

Japan feted the Pro-Axis Bengali leader Subhas Chandra Bose’s arrival (via Germany).  They hoped he would mobilize Indian resistance to the war effort.  Bose made a radio broadcast to that effect.

15 June – cholera struck the prisoners of war on the ‘Railroad of Death’ work details.

18 June – Sir Archibald Wavell was replaced by Sir Claude Auchinleck due to Prime Minister Churchill’s dissatisfaction with the lack of progress in the Burma Theatre.

Coastal Watchers on Bougainville notified Halsey that the enemy were moving to fortify New Georgia.  The observers also noticed the Japanese camouflaging the airfields at Munda.  This resulted in pushing Operation Toenails up by 4 days and Halsey began moving up The Slot.  (The Watchers at this time were kept busy being on the lookout and rescuing downed pilots.).

A post of mine for the Coast Watchers can be seen HERE.

The New Georgia Group in the central Solomons includes 12 large islands, several dozen smaller ones, barrier islands, coral reefs and countless uncharted coral heads.  Lying south of the equator, they have all the tropical problems that will be found throughout the Pacific War: high temperatures and humidity, steep ridges, mangrove swamps, diseases, insects, poisonous snakes and jungles so thick that the top canopy prevents daylight and accurate aerial photography of the ground.

To be continued….

Click on images to enlarge.

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Current News – wwii-malaysia-remains-transfer

Malaysian returns remains of 1945 crashed plane to the U.S.

http://fox61.com/2015/11/04/malaysia-returns-remains-from-site-of-1945-us-plane-crash/

150,000 WWII aerial canisters of film to be digitized and available on-line!

http://www.archives.gov/press/press-releases/2016/nr16-05.html

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Military Humor – (your D.I.’s continued… )

ce22a97cbd749058658066db735299f219755 (453x640)

16464 (640x462)

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Farewell Salutes – 

Frederick Blank – Tokirima, NZ; NZ Army # 373554, WWII, ETO, 24th Battalion

Helen Coyte – Bridgeport, CT; US Navy, WAVES, WWIIvday16

Andrew Dedick Jr. – Red Bank, NJ; US Army, WWII, ETO, Capt., Battalion Surgeon

Leif Hubertz – Staten Island, NY; US Navy, USS Everglades

Keith Kappelmann – Topeka, KS; US Army Air Corps, WWII, Korea, 1st Lt.

Wilton McPherson Eady – AUS; RA Army # vx15218, WWII, 2/8 Field Co., POW

Arthur Patrick – Broomall, PA; US Army Air Corps, WWII, PTO, HQS/11th Airborne

Larry Rudd – Brantford, CAN; RC Army, Afghanistan, paratrooper

Ray Shelton – Roggen, CO; US Navy, WWII

David Walker – Bayton, TX; US Army Air Corps, WWII, PTO, 188/11th A/B, paratrooper/glider

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About GP Cox

Everett Smith served with the Headquarters Company, 187th Regiment, 11th A/B Division during WWII. This site is in tribute to my father, "Smitty." GPCox is a member of the 11th Airborne Association. Member # 4511 and extremely proud of that fact!

Posted on November 16, 2015, in Uncategorized, WWII and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 45 Comments.

  1. The Japanese airforce certainly started suffering losses.
    The Japanese were not the only ones to release versions of events which suited them – although I wonder if the Americans would have bothered to hide the fact that enemy action had caused Yamamoto’s death? Maybe a complicated honour thing with them?

    Like

    • That one baffled me as well. All I can imagine is that the Allies were having too many successful operations at the time and they didn’t want to make one of their heroes just another “slam-dunk” for their enemy. I appreciate all your interest and comments!

      Like

  2. Though the war was bad enough, the conditions they had to survive in would have been terrible. Sounds like they were about as likely to get a tropical disease as get killed in battle. What a rough world to be in.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You definitely have the odds right, Bev. Even more so for the Japanese; as their supplies ran out and their immune systems couldn’t fight off all that surrounded them.

      Like

  3. It is always sobering to read about the casualties of war — on both sides. It is so easy to de-humanize the enemy, and perhaps necessary in a way to survive, but war is hell for both sides.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Refreshing to read of our superiority paying off but, in war, gains are never made without some loss. That is one of the reasons that war is so stupid.

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  5. What a hard fought battles and so many casualties.Smiling at the humor section especially “trust me you won’t need a alarm clock” 🙂

    Like

  6. My dad’s two brothers were there. They made it back home. They both were killed in a car wreck soon after their return.

    Like

    • Such a horribly sad story. If you wish to have your uncles mentioned in the Farewell Salutes, please leave their name, hometown, service. Thank you for coming by to read and tell us.

      Like

  7. The amount of air loss Japan suffered is staggering! Thank you, again for giving me another great history lesson. As always, I appreciate the farewell salutes.

    GP, I know that you do not take personal emails, therefore I am asking if you would visit my site. Please read the post, in full. I understand that you may be hesitant to accept awards, many of us our, but I would be so honored if you would accept this one. If you need assistance, here is an email I can be reached at:
    GrapevineTexas(@)verizon(dot)net

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Outstanding. Continue your great work.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. ‘Alaska irrelevant’–they sure got that wrong!

    Like

  10. Seems like much of the action in the Pacific campaign was centered in the Solomon island group.

    Like

    • Quite a bit because Rabaul was so important to the Japanese and the majority of the troops and supplies were going to Europe. The Pacific type war was new to our people and a lot was trial and error which moved slowly.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Coast Watcher duty was pretty much a suicide mission. My Basis Training alarm wakeup, was the TI (USAF equiv. of DI) shouting, “Wake up dumbass” with a Texas drawl. Some of us got pretty good at imitating his voice. We’d used it on slackers sleeping under their bunks–when they were supposed to be cleaning the barracks. It was good for a few yucks when they banged their heads on the bed frame waking up.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I agree that the conditions must have made fighting that war even worse, it that was possible.
    It was the stirrings of Bose and possible support for the Japanese in India, that kept my father safe and sound in his Indian posting. They fully expected to have to fight both Indians and Japanese at some stage, but that fortunately, that never happened.
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Like

  13. Killing Yamamoto was a fantastic feat of airmanship. It’s a pity that no film has ever been made of it, at least as far as I know.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Not to my knowledge either, but you can see the wreckage. This film is 7 minutes and it is quite a trek into the jungle to get to it, so if you are short on time, fast-forward to 4:55. Thank you for commenting and your interest, John.

      Like

  14. From your description, the Solomons sound like absolute hell to fight in.

    Like

  1. Pingback: My Article Read (11-17-2015) | My Daily Musing

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