November 1943 (2)

 

Red Beach Two - 105th Field Artillery landing

Red Beach Two – 105th Field Artillery landing

13-20 November – troops, ships and aircraft had amassed in Hawaii, Fiji Islands and New Hebrides for the Gilbert/Marshall operations.  This included more than 100,000 troops and 8 aircraft carriers of the Army, Navy, Marines and Coast Guard.  The first actions were under VAdm. Spruance, Commander of the Central Pacific Force.

15 November –  Thirty-one B-24s from the 90th BG took off on a strike against Wewak, New Guinea, but failed to meet escorting fighters. Instead, they bombed Alexishafen Airfield No. 1, with excellent results and 95% of bombs on target, causing two explosions, and fires started on Danip plantation. No enemy fighters were seen over the target.

Eighty-eight B-25’s from all four squadrons of the 345th BG and two squadrons of the 38th BG took off on a strike against Wewak and Boram. While waiting for escorting P-47s at the rendezvous point at Mount Yonkie, the B-25s were intercepted by fifteen Ki-43 Oscars that made 15 firing passes.

Troops on Red Beach One - a 193rd Tank Batt. light tank in background.

Troops on Red Beach One – a 193rd Tank Batt. light tank in background.

20-24 November – the US 27th Infantry Division Task Force, a National Guard unit out of New York, landed on Butaritari Island, south of Makin Island.  (This was coordinated with the USMC landing at Tarawa Atoll to be discussed in a following post.)  The Japanese did not defend the beach but remained inland.  The cost of capturing Makin in casualties among Army personnel was not great; 58 killed in action, 8 died of wounds, 150 wounded in action, and 35 injured, but not in combat.

 

Stringing wire on Main Island Road, Makin.

Stringing wire on Main Island Road, Makin.

Stringing wire on Main Island Road, Makin.

On the 24th, the US escort carrier Liscombe Bay was torpedoes and sunk by enemy sub I-175, under Lt.Cmdr. Sunao Tabata, in the waters off Makin Atoll.

22 November – Buka Airfield and Bonis Airfield were hit by forty plus B-24’s, thirty plus B-25’s, and thirty plus fighter aircraft of the 13th Air Force.  A few RNZAF Venturas attacked Green Island, causing heavy damage in the bivouac and supply area and sinking a barge.  A single B-25 bombed Ballale Airfield.

25 November – 5 US destroyers, under [then] Captain Arleigh Burke, intercepted 5 Japanese destroyers near Cape St. George off New Ireland.  The enemy was returning from a supply drop at Buka.  The Onami, Makinami and Yugiri were sunk and another was damaged.  The US ships came away clean and basically put an end to the “Tokyo Express.” [Capt. Burke’s story will follow in the next post.]

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23 November – the Sextant Meeting began at Mena House in Cairo, Egypt.  Churchill was upset that FDR had invited Chiang and stressed the he wanted the US to land in the balkans.  At this, Gen. Marshall exploded, “God forbid I should dictate, but not one soldier is going to die on that beach.”  And, FDR wanted the British to assist in Burma.

Tehran conference

Tehran conference

27 November – Churchill and FDR flew to Tehran, Iran for a separate meeting with Stalin.  The president avoided the Prime Minister on most of the issues and Stalin only sided with the statement concerning the insignificance of Chiang’s contributions to the war.  The 2 Western Leaders would return to Cairo to resume the talks into December.

Click on images to enlarge.

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Political Humor of November 1943 – 

43-cairo-conf

1943_02

 

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Farewell Salutes – 

Marvin Adkins – Mackson, MI; US Army, Korea, C Company/ 187th RCT

Eric Brown – Leith, SCOT; RAF, WWII, ETO, Captain, pilot, D.S.C.ftd_S30-3179_lg

Miguel Encinias – Las Vegas, NM; US Arm Air Corps, WWII, ETO, POW/ Korea & Vietnam, Lt.Col. (Ret. 30 Yrs.)

Mitchell Higginbotham – Amherst, VA; US Army Air Corps, WWII, ETO, Tuskegee airman

Mervyn Jones – Pukekohe, NZ; RNZ Expeditionary Force # 62058, WWII, 21st Battalion

John Nester, Hunt’s Point, NY; US Army Air Corps, WWII, PTO, B-29 pilot, 9th Bombardment Group

Melvin Patterson – Batesville, AR; US Army, WWII

H.J. Ross – Tampa, FL; US navy, WWII

Vernon Saur – Paradise Hill, SK, CAN; RC Air Force, WWII

Peter Unwin – WaggaWagga, AUS; RA Navy # 1313337, Petty Officer

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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 February 25, 2016, in Uncategorized, WWII and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 42 Comments.

  1. All round excellent assault on Wewak, no fighter escorts and still a 95% success rate.
    Quite a few story’s to be told by the crews of those 31 B-24s.

    Like

  2. We must never forget the price paid by those who sacrificed life and limb for their country, but better the countries had never gone to war in the first place. We humans refuse to learn that fighting is futile; it produces only heartbreak for victims and soldiers alike. The sole winners of any war are the arms manufacturers and dealers. Thank you for sharing and giving us so much to think about.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Is Chiang the “Chiang Kai-Shek” of China? I heard something about Chiang Kai-Shek but I didn’t know that FDR sided with him although Churchill and Stalin were both against Chiang!

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  4. It seems so strange that men should die to capture somewhere that neither they nor anybody else has heard of. A good thorough account, as always, thank you.

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  5. The disagreements between FDR and Churchill interested me, although I’m not really surprised that they didn’t agree. Leaders want to be the “one” in charge is my opinion. Even in out regular world, listening is a difficult thing for most people.

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  6. Hi!

    I appreciate the friendship we’ve shared via our World War II blogs in recent months! I have a favor to ask—if I’d send you some of my stories via email that are printed in my World War II book, would you consider writing a book review for it on Amazon? I’d really appreciate it! The more reviews, the higher the book goes in the ratings which can boost its sales. I’m working on my second volume now!!!

    If you’re not comfortable with that, I understand. Some people have told me no.

    Kayleen Reusser

    http://www.KayleenR.com

    Author of World War II Legacies:

    Stories of Northeast Indiana Veterans

    Preserving our past, present, and future

    Like

  7. Very interesting article and not surprised at the strong disagreements between the leaders. Glad to learn something new, Everett!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Texas WWII hero Doris Miller was aboard the Liscombe Bay when she was sunk and was lost at sea. Doris Miller, for those who don’t know the story, was the cook from Waco, Texas who was aboard the West Virginia when she was hit by torpedoes at Pearl Harbor. Condensing the story, he is the Black sailor who was asked to load a machine gun during the attack, but instead took control of the gun and fired on the attacking enemy aircraft. He was nominated for the Medal of Honor but was awarded the Navy Cross in a ceremony aboard the Enterprise.

    I always look forward to your posts, GP. This is a wonderful thing you are doing.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. It was interesting to read that there were strong disagreements among the allied leaders. I guess that Churchill had no choice but to accept FDR’s decisions.

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  10. Every time I read your farewell salutes, I think about my post “Soon to be gone”… Where do you get those obits?

    Like

    • On line newspaper obituaries, sites that lists the casualties of wars, other blogs, news media, etc. I have even received names and info from families who wish to have their loved ones mentioned.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Reading a older book right now regarding Churchill’s Strategy of “Circumference against the Center” to take back Europe from Hitler. Churchill convinced FDR and Ike that to avoid another stalemate war like WW1 it was necessary to attack the peripherals, ie the soft underbelly or Europe first.

    It is old, but well worth the read.

    http://www.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a222453.pdf

    Like

  12. As always, a detailed and interesting roundup of events, GP. One section struck me today, for some reason.
    “The cost of capturing Makin in casualties among Army personnel was not great; 58 killed in action, 8 died of wounds, 150 wounded in action, and 35 injured, but not in combat.”

    64 men killed, admittedly not a great ‘cost’ in the vastness of that war. But I started to think of the 64 families; loved ones, sweethearts, children left behind. Futures never experienced, lives cut short, and hopes and dreams gone, on some faraway island.
    Sometimes, the ‘small’ engagements capture the imagination more that the huge battles.
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Like

  13. Thank you for your continued support.

    Like

  1. Pingback: My Article Read (2-25-2016) – My Daily Musing

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