Communiques from the Pacific

Okinawa, 1945, taken by: W. Eugene Smith

CINCPOA COMMUNIQUÉ NO. 334, APRIL 16, 1945

Supported by carrier aircraft and by naval gunfire, elements of the Twenty Fourth Army Corps landed on le Shima, an island west of Okinawa, on the morning of April 16 (East Longitude Date). Advancing inland rapidly against resistance which was initially light but later stiffened, our troops captured the enemy airfield and secured most of the area west of that point. The greater part of the enemy defense force has been driven back to defensive positions in the pinnacles southeast of the airfield.
Marines of the Third Amphibious Corps continued to attack groups of the enemy on Motobu Peninsula, Okinawa, on April 16. Marine forces continued to advance northward in the rugged terrain of the island north of the peninsula.
There was little change in the lines of the Twenty Fourth Army Corps in the southern sector of Okinawa. Naval guns and carrier planes attacked enemy positions in the south.
At the end of April 13 our forces on Okinawa had killed 9,108 of the enemy and captured 391 prisoners of war. About 85,000 civilians had come under jurisdiction of the U. S. Military Government on the island by the end of April 15. Our Military Government authorities have constructed one large camp and have taken over thirteen villages for use of civilians. Civilian foodstuffs are being salvaged and used. Our medical facilities have proved adequate for treatment of civilians thus far.

Okinawa, April 1945, taken by: W.E. Smith

CINCPOA COMMUNIQUÉ NO. 340, APRIL 22, 1945

The Twenty Fourth Army Corps continued to attack the enemy’s fortified positions in the southern sector of Okinawa on April 22 (East Longitude Date) meeting bitter resistance in all areas of the fighting. Our troops were supported by heavy artillery, naval guns, and carrier and landbased aircraft. No substantial changes had been made in the lines by 1700 on April 22. A total of 11,738 of the enemy have been killed and 27 taken prisoner in the Twenty Fourth Corps zone of action.
Elements of the Marine Third Amphibious Corps occupied Taka Banare Island east of Okinawa on April 22 and landed on Sesoko Island west of Motobu Peninsula on the same date. Our troops on Sesoko were reported to be half way across the island in the early afternoon.

Corpsmen race under fire to the wounded, Okinawa

During the night of April 21-22, a few enemy aircraft approached our forces around the Okinawa area and four were shot down by carrier planes and aircraft of the Tactical Air Force. On the afternoon of April 22 a substantial group of Japanese planes attacked our forces in and around Okinawa causing some damage and sinking one light unit of the fleet. Forty-nine enemy planes were shot down by our combat air patrols and antiaircraft fire.
Carrier aircraft of the U. S. Pacific Fleet attacked airfields and other installations in the Sakishima Group on April 21 and 22.
Army Mustangs of the Seventh Fighter Command attacked Suzuka airfield 32 miles southwest of Nagoya on April 22 inflicting the following damage on the enemy:

9 aircraft shot out of the air

Japanese land-based aircraft destroyed

One probably shot down
17 aircraft destroyed on the ground
20 Aircraft damaged on the ground

A 6000-ton ship exploded in Ise Bay south of Nagoya
Two small oilers sunk
One small tanker sunk
One coastal cargo ship damaged

Carrierbased aircraft of the U. S. Pacific Fleet attacked airfields and ground installations in the Amami Group of the Northern Ryukyus during April 18 to 20 inclusive, damaging or destroying numerous airfield structures. On April 21 and 22 carrier planes operating in the Northern Ryukyus shot down 16 enemy planes and burned 10 more on the ground.
A search plane of Fleet Air Wing One attacked a small cargo ship east of the Ryukyus on April 22 leaving it burning and dead in the water.
Runways and installations on Marcus Island were bombed by Liberators of the Seventh Army Air Force on April 21. Helldiver bombers of the Fourth Marine Aircraft Wing attacked the airstrip on Yap in the Western Carolines on April 21.
During the twenty four hours ending at 1800 on April 20, 60 Japanese were killed and 64 were captured on Iwo Island. A total of 23,049 of the enemy have been killed and 850 captured since February.

Click on images to enlarge.

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Military ‘Office’ Humor – 

Incognito office duty

 

 

 

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Farewell Salutes – 

Derek Barnsley – Coromandel, NZ; Royal Navy # FX705461, WWII, Sgt., 580 Squadron/RAF

Wayne Chapman – Burlington, VT; US Army, Korea

Norbert Gilly Jr. – New Orleans, LA; USMC, WWII, PTO, Bronze Star, Purple Heart

Howard Hermance – Milwaukee, WI; US Army Air Corps, WWII, PTO, 187th/11th Airborne Division

Ted Leslie – Jensen Beach, FL; US Army Air Corps, WWII, 82nd Airborne Division

Ernest L. Medina – Montrose, CO; US Army, Vietnam, Captain, Silver Star

Dennis Odom – St. Louis, IL; US Army, Vietnam

Jack Rotolo – Rome, NY; US Army, WWII, PTO, 118th Combat Engineer Battalion

Crosbie Saint – Philomont, PA; US Army, Vietnam, General (Ret. 30 y.), West Point grad, Cmdr, of the U.S. Army Europe, Silver Star & DFC

Fred Williams – Springfield, OR; US Navy, WWII & Korea

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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 May 17, 2018, in WWII and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 66 Comments.

  1. Just catching up, GP. Ie Shima was on my father’s list of places he was during the war.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love your posts! My father was a veteran of WWII in the Pacific. A miracle he survived the Battle of Peleliu.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I am as well, that was one awful hell-hole, pardon my language, but I’m sure your father had even more words to describe it!! Any stories from him you can remember – Please share with us.

      Liked by 1 person

      • My father was in the 81st Infantry Division–The Fighting Wildcats out of Fort Rucker, Al. He was very proud of the Wildcats and until his death retained friendships with some of them. They were sent to Anguar and then to Pellieu. He’d been in the reserves at the University of Alabama, so he went in as a 2nd Lieutenant after training. But when they advanced on the island of Pellieu, all the officers ahead of him were killed and he was in charge for a while, until he was shot, too. We often asked him about the scar in the middle of his chest and its exit scar on his side where the bullet went right through. It is a miracle he survived. For a long time, War is Hell, is all he would say when asked about it.

        Liked by 2 people

        • Thank you very much for telling us some of your father’s story. I realize most of the men refused to talk about it all. I respect that because it is usually their way of dealing with all that went on, but I’m glad to have what stories I do so that they’re saved for future generations – ’cause we’re never going to see a generation like that again!!

          Liked by 2 people

  3. GP – I’ve written this before, but I want to thank you again for taking the time to list those who fought and have now passed on. I always read these postings – often before I read the main text.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Okinawa is the place where was the only place “ground fight”.
    Anti-Japanese says that Japan abandoned Okinawa, but it is a lie.
    Already Nothing in Japan, the last force, use all Japanese military’s strength , the Tokko-tai, battleship ” Yamato” went to Okinawa.

    Enemy soldiers did not catch the Japanese POWS, they tied Japanese pow back hands and pushed Japanese pow out of the plane,etc.
    So the number of Japanese pow is small.
    Enemy soldiers raped Japanese women.
    That is why Japanese women committed suicide at Banzai Cliff,too.

    In Okinawa, the citizens of Okinawa also fought together until the end.

    However, Japan lost the war.

    The upper part of Japan(Tojyo prime minister etc) was against Germany ‘s participation in the war.
    However, a part of the military ran out of control and knew that it would “lose” the war ,but participated in the war.

    I respect the Japanese soldier who fought at the risk of their life.
    Without them, we were not born in this world.

    13~17 on July in every year,in Japan,Memorial service will be held for those who died for Japan at Yasukuni-Shrine.
    I also donated already!:D

    Like

    • I’m afraid some of your information is incorrect, Nasuko. No offense to where you read or heard it, our troops did not throw POW’s out of the planes, your men refused to surrender or committed suicide to avoid capture. The idea that our troops would rape and kill your women was merely propaganda and it was downright fear and a false hope of showing support for Japan that caused them to jump. perhaps this article, written by Aniya Masaaki and translated by Kyoko Selden can help.
      https://apjjf.org/-Aniya-Masaaki/2629/article.html

      Liked by 1 person

      • No,it’s
        “Charles A Lindbergh” wrote in the “The wartime Jenerals of “( Second World War Diary). ” pushed the Japanese pow from the plane, but on record,Japanese jumped off by ounself “.

        “John W. Dower” writes on “War without Merey”. ” called the four American divisions “Slaughterer””.

        Like

        • The Japanese were not open to surrender, for whatever reason back then, and preferred suicide. It is not up to me to judge – that was a different world and every country has parts of their history they would like to forget.

          Liked by 1 person

          • DR.GP Cox,
            >every country has parts of their history they would like to forget.

            I agree with you !! :D

            You are rich in knowledge and it is very interesting to speak and it is pleasant to me.
            That is why I wrote in various things.

            I do not hate you, I like(respect) you rather!!:D

            Since Here(blog) is a gathering of Americans, I think that I should write favorite things by Americans.
            However, as for WW2, I am Japanese and should write my Japanese opinion.

            …So, it will always develop like this….

            But, Talking to you motivates me to study more.
            your knowledge and information is very interesting! !

            If I have a good command of English,
            There are many thing I’d like to talk about!!!:D

            Thank you very much,Dr.GP Cox!!
            Now ,I eat evening meal,:D

            Liked by 1 person

            • I enjoy talking to you as well. It is when the talking stops that problems arise. More people should engage as you and I do. I think it would solve many problems plaguing the world today.
              Stay safe and happy, my friend.

              Liked by 2 people

      • 安仁屋政昭,I don’t believe him.
        He is a aaa…..bit…hmmm….
        Thank you sooo much!!Dr.GP Cox!!:D

        Like

      • Thank you Dr.GP Cox, :D
        I check “The Editors”…Yuki Tanaka=man who is anti-Japanese,now he is Acting anti-Japanese in Germany.
        When I look at these members, I can soon notice that they are anti-Japanese activities, so I will not trust this document they wrote. :D

        About Mr.Yuki tanaka、 Mr.ジョン・w・ダワー↓

        https://nasudanasuko.wordpress.com/2017/11/20/lie-of-the-book%e3%80%80%e3%80%80%e6%9c%ac%e3%81%ae%e3%82%a6%e3%82%bd/

        Like

  5. Every time I read about the Japanese, I can’t believe it. 11,738 of the enemy have been killed and 27 taken prisoner. No wonder they dropped the atom bombs.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well, the bomb issue is still being discussed, but I don’t like it compared in today’s ideals – that was a different world and as you can see a whole different kind of war!

      Like

  6. A total of 11,738 of the enemy have been killed…. the mind boggles at those figures gp, incomprehensible when compared to modern warfare.
    Very informative post as to be expected from you mate.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. We must wonder what was going through the minds of these troops in April ’45, so far from home knowing that victory was coming and wondering if they would make it.

    They talk about PTS these days, the troops these days can have no idea whet the men in 45 were going through.The term ‘shell shock’ was used and there were some senior officers put that down to cowardice, then again they rarely got to the front lines so wouldn’t have had a clue what was going on in reality like the ordinary troops did.

    No1 of the Final Salutes has me confused, he’s listed as RN yet has an Army or Airforce rank. I checked his obituary ( copying you GP) and all I can think of he was airforce attached to the navy fleet air arm at the time.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I found that confusing at first as well, and then remembered how much the Commonwealth personnel was attached where needed after being shipped to the ETO. I presumed that was one of those cases.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Okinawa is one I would love to read up on a little more. Just such a tragic loss of life! It’s hard to even imagine.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. If I’m not mistaken, war correspondent Ernie Pyle was killed while covering the action on le Shima. The Okinawa campaign was a stinking hell-hole. I reccomend anyone interested read “With the Old Breed” by E.B. Sledge. A real eye-opener to the horrendous conditions and combat on Okinawa (and Peleliu).

    Liked by 3 people

    • That is an excellent book, one of a few I have on the subject. Mr. Pyle’s post will be following. I have a high regard for the war correspondents and cameramen during that time to ever leave him out.

      Liked by 3 people

  10. Gritty battle, the Japanese couldn’t conceive defeat or surrender.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. GP, Thanks again for the “visit” at my place! I checked….”Pacific Paratrooper” was the 13th WordPress website I started to “Follow”…. I guess that was in early 2012!!! These Okinawa Communique amaze me…to read the number of Japanese killed mounting all the way up to 23,049…plus all their aircraft & ships sunk! What impressed me most, however, was how excellent we were back then in military government organization. There was a name for it back then, a separate US Army operational department…like Civil Affairs or something like that! That first Communique quotes 85,000 Japanese.people under US Military Government seemingly overnight!!! What happened between then & Iraq? Best to you always! Hope you are doing OK with your sinus problem! Phil

    Liked by 1 person

    • To put it bluntly, Phil – Between then, at war and today’s “operations” (if you call it a war, you need Congressional approval), is a lot of liberal red tape. Every move they make these days, they have to answer to someone who never served, but is looking out for the enemy’s civil rights.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. I can’t imagine not hearing from my warrior son except rarely. We talk every week (thanks to free phone calls on Messenger). I would be a wreck otherwise. Kudos to the soldiers who wrote home so often.

    Liked by 3 people

    • These were actually what today would be considered ‘inter-office memos’. I can understand what you mean, but that’s because we are used to today’s technology. Even when my son was in the service, I did not as yet have a PC; it was either letter or phone communication.

      Liked by 1 person

      • When I was in Vietnam (1967-68) we didn’t have access to telephones, computers, etc. I was with the Marines fighting along the DMZ with no access to family or friends except slow mail. When I was wounded and hospitilized in Japan for a couple of months, my older brother managed to put through a call to me via some sort of specialized telephone-satellite system which was difficult to arrange. I can’t remember the name of the process, but it involved saying “over” and it was very brief.

        Liked by 2 people

  13. These communiques were very interesting. I often wondered how the body counts were derived. I have to assume a SWAG.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Just thought I’d give you the dope on my trip to the USAF Museum late last month: It was AMAZING! I spent virtually all day there and most of that time in the WWII section. My feet were hurting so bad at the end of the day! 😛 The Memphis Belle was there, but not revealed yet, although I did get to see the wing and tail tips. 😀 One of my all-time hero’s jacket and boots, etc. were there and seeing that was the highlight of my month! I had a really great time there.

    Anyway, thanks for listening . . . !

    Liked by 1 person

  15. The bloodiest action of the Pacific theater?

    Liked by 1 person

    • There were approx. 135,000 to 160,000 casualties on both side – so yes it sure was. The battle has been referred to as the “typhoon of steel” in English, and tetsu no ame (“rain of steel”) or tetsu no bōfū (“violent wind of steel”) in Japanese.
      Thanks for reading, Cindy.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. What a waste of life. Though that can be said of it all I suppose.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. The activity continued to the end – amazing to read about the losses that they continued to sustain.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Taking over a population of 85,000 enemy civilians must have been a bit formidable. Being cut off from the rest of Japan, they have to be fed and otherwise taken care of. But on the other hand, there is still a war to wage. I wonder if this slowed our progress.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Those that handled the linguistics behind the combat soldier didn’t receive enough praise for what they did. You can’t imagine what all goes into taking care of all those soldiers AND their prisoners on those many islands. (remember I’ve skipped many of them.)

      Liked by 1 person

  19. So much waste….

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Well written, I could feel the intensity, war is hell. Cheers

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Those numbers are staggering. You would think they would surrender already!

    Liked by 1 person

  22. So close to the end of the war in Europe, the forces in the Pacific theatre are still so heavily engaged. Those Japanese losses are enormous, and say much for the determination of the allied troops, as well as the desperation of the defenders.
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

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