January 1944 (3)

Shaggy Ridge

Shaggy Ridge

22-26 January – the fresh men of the Australian 15th and 18th Brigades captured Kankiryo Saddle on the western tip of the New Guinea Finesterre Range.  This important enemy position placed the men only 20 miles from the coast.

8-31 January – a US Navy communiqué reported that American submarines had sunk 10 Japanese vessels, including an oil tanker on the 8th alone.  The enemy cruiser IJN Kuma was sunk by the British sub, HMS Tally Ho on the 11th, in Solomon Island waters.  And the US Marines were continuing to battle the enemy on Bougainville.

USMC map

USMC map

Click on images to enlarge.

31 January – Operation Flintlock, a well-planned and very large action started off with shells from the battleships and aircraft from Tarawa and Makin.  They knocked out the airstrips on Jaluit and Mili.  Adm. Spruance’s 4 carrier groups hit Wotje and Maloelap.

The leadership of this huge operation:  Adm. K. Turner had the overall command of the amphibious operation; MGen. C. Corbett led the Kwajalein Southern Force; RAdm. R. Conolly commanded the Northern Force of the newly formed 4th Marine Division for the twin islets of Roi-Namur; Adm. Hill led the assault on Majuro Atoll with one Battalion of the US Army 27th Division, 2 Marine battalions and one regular Corps and then on to Eniwetok.

Adm. Mitscher’s Task Force 58 included 12 carriers, 8 fast battleships, 6 cruisers and 36 destroyers.  They had sailed from Pearl Harbor on the 22nd to meet and destroy any Japanese vessel that dared to leave Truk in defense.

view of part of the 5th Fleet

view of part of the 5th Fleet

Adm. Spruance had overall command of the 5th Fleet (“The Big Blue Fleet), with 375 ships at his disposal, 700 carrier-based and 475 land-based aircraft.  His mission was to get 53,000 assault troops on shore at 3 islands that were separated by over 300 miles of open Pacific.

kwajalein_1944 (1024x790)

At 0950 hours, Adm. Hill signally that Majro Atoll was secure.  Kwajalein, after 3 days of bombing, one sailor said, “…it looked as if it had been picked up 20,000 feet and then dropped.”  But 5,000 fanatical Japanese troops survived and this would cause casualties to the 4th Marine Division, despite the enemy’s lack of organization.

Japanese Kawanishi H8K seaplane downed after strafing the beach of Kwajalein.

Japanese Kawanishi H8K seaplane downed after strafing the beach of Kwajalein.

More on these battles in February 1944.

9-30 January – in the CBI, the British 14th Army took the port of Maungdaw on the Bay of Bengal.  Although, despite their success, the troops were left exposed on their left flank.  The Japanese just happened to be amassing right there.

Stilwell’s Chinese troops continued to advance and by the end of the month, the Chinese 22 Division had captured Taro, Burma.

Click on images to enlarge.

##################################################################################

Japanese Propaganda – used in attempts to demoralize the Australian troops and divide the Allies

1035209a_med

7182210-3x2-700x467.jpgjap propaganda aimed at aussies

 

 

 

 

##################################################################################

Farewell Salutes – 

Edwin ‘Bud’ Bosshart – Silverton, OR; US Navy, WWII, PTO, SeaBee

Johnny Cambell – Hutto, TX; Korea, 187th RCTuntitled

Joseph Druke – Buffalo, NY; US Army, Korea

John Goble – Brighton, AUS; RA Navy (Ret. 51 yrs.), WWII, PTO & ETO, Commodore

Michael Korenko – Mentor, OH; US Army Air Corps, WWII, CBI

Donald Marks, Boca Raton, FL; US Army, WWII

Michael Monsoor – Long Beach, CA; US Navy SEAL, Iraq, Petty Officer, KIA, Medal of Honor

Frank Petersen Jr. – Topeka, KS; USMC, Korea, Vietnam, Lt.General (Ret. 38 yrs.), pilot

John Tasso Sr. – Saugus, MA; US Navy, WWII

Frederick Walker Jr. – Decatur, GA; US Army, WWII, ETO, 3rd Army antiaircraft

###################################################################################

 

Advertisements

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 June 20, 2016, in Uncategorized, WWII and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 52 Comments.

  1. Great post gp, incredible to imagine the composition of the 5th Fleet,

    Like

  2. Another great post and I found the propaganda posters fascinating…

    Like

  3. You are always spot-on with your facts and your ability to weave everything together makes for an interesting and entertaining read [even if that read can be painful at times. Thank you for being a lasting history book for not only our younger generation but for those reading and sharing today and the students reading 50 years from now.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. i don’t know a seaplane is so big.

    Like

    • A lot of people say that, Mary Lou. And many don’t realize how versatile they are. Perhaps I should do another post on PBY Catalina’s or reblog one?

      Like

  5. Thany you Freund liebe Grüße Gislinde

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Commodore Goble commanded the HMAS Vampire, the last of what we call our big gun ships; (they relied on guns not the rockets like todays ships) and is the only ship of that type kept as a memorial at the Australian National Maritime Museum, here in Sydney.

    He was a pilot in our Fleet Air Arm this link has a photo taken of a Lt Cmdr as he then was in 1949 ‘working up ‘ on HMAS Sydney

    https://www.awm.gov.au/collection/P03993.004

    Liked by 1 person

    • I did read his biography and where I usually list the ship a Navy man was on, Cmdr. Goble impressively commanded too many to list. I’m glad you’ve added this information here.

      Like

  7. The Japanese propaganda was quite interesting, G. –Curt

    Like

  8. Another interesting post, Everett. I also haven’t seen those propaganda posters!

    Like

  9. Great post! Fascinating to read. But I especially love the pictures from my artistic point of view – hope you don´t mind? Wish you a wonderful day!

    Like

  10. That seaplane picture is gripping. I can’t believe it’s all in one piece.

    Like

  11. There can’t have been many places worse than New Guinea to be a soldier. I love that flying boat, it looks almost like a downed dinosaur in a science fiction film.

    Like

    • It was an island forgotten in time, but the war woke them up. I think that is actually a shame. I wondered just how long those men stood looking at that dinosaur.

      Like

  12. This blog is such a treasure trove for those years. Wonderful work.

    Like

  13. I love the post and the propaganda pix. I think that was a clever strategy of the Japanese, to try to pit the Australians against the Americans. But apparently it fell flat.

    Like

  14. Interesting article! The photo of the 5th Fleet presents an intimidating sight.

    Like

  15. I find the information about Stillwells “Chinese” Guerilla Troops fascinating! I am planning on diving into a bio about Stillwell and all the early work that was done regarding Guerilla Warfare in the Pacific Theater of WW2.

    Like

  16. Operation Flintlock was massive indeed, GP.
    As for the Japanese propaganda, I believe that most found it amusing, rather than upsetting. Listening to ‘Tokyo Rose’ on the radio was very popular, despite her ‘message.’
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Very true, Pete. But being that the two culture did not understand each other, what we found humorous was not to them and visa versa. Glad you liked the post.

      Like

  17. Pierre Lagacé

    Another great history course GP.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Excellent work GP, fantastic post. I hadn’t seen those propaganda posters before – pretty amusing. The idea of our continent being carried off while the boys were away was clearly a popular one.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Thank you very much for including me on your list.

    Like

  1. Pingback: My Article Read (6-20-2016) – My Daily Musing

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: