The Battle of Okinawa — 65 Years Ago today, May 16, 1945

May 16, 1945

On Okinawa, the US 6th Marine Division (part of US 3rd Amphibious Corps) reports heavy casualties in continuing attacks on Sugar Loaf Hill.

Japanese antitank guns knock out a number of American tanks supporting an advance, by US 1st Marine Division, along the valley of the Wana River.

Attacks by the US 77th Division to the north of Shuri continue to be unsuccessful.

The US 96th Division reaches the edge of the village of Yonabaru.

Love Hill, to the west of Conical Hill, continues to be held by Japanese forces.

Okinawa Campaign Background — SHINYO! Kamikaze Part Two

The picture of Kamikaze’s off Okinawa is that of burning Japanese planes crashing into carriers and battleships off the coast. While these were the the majority of Kamikaze attacks, they were not the only ones.

IJA Suicide Explosive Motor Boat

The smaller islands of the Ryukyu Island chain that Okinawa was a part of hosted hundreds of explosive motor boats (EMB) of the Japanese Navy’s “Shinyo” (Sea Quake) and Japanese Army’s “Maru-ni” types.

The invasion of the Kerama Retto anchorage several days before Okinawa proper saved the Okinawa invasion flotilla at Hagushi beach the attack of several hundred EMB the night of 1-2 April 1945. These suicide craft were well hidden and had been completely missed by Navy aircraft.

The more numerous, nimble and speedy “Brown Water” PT-boats of the US Navy’s 1942-43 Solomons and 1942-1944 New Guinea Campaigns were left in the Philippines by Admirals Turner and Nimitz. This left overworked fleet destroyers, slower destroyer escorts and very slow converted landing craft gunboats of the Pacific “Blue Water” fleet to face the EMB threat alone.

This was a mistake that would cost hundreds of unnecessary US Navy casualties, as can be seen from the following combat history that is clipped from from http://www.combinedfleet.com

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The Battle of Okinawa — 65 Years Ago today, May 15, 1945

May 15, 1945

On Okinawa, slow American advances and costly Japanese counterattacks continue. Heavy fighting is reported around the Sugar Loaf Hill and Conical Hill positions.

Marines on Sugar Loaf Hill, elements of US 3rd Amphibious Corps, withdraw because of Japanese fire.

The US 1st Marine Division advances along the Wana river valley, west of Shuri, against heavy Japanese resistance.

The US 305th infantry regiment and 77th Divisions, of US 24th Corps, achieve limited progress and have been reduced to 25 percent effectiveness in the fighting.

See Okinawa Map XXXV: Tenth Army Advances, 11-21 May 1945

Map XXXV: Tenth Army Advances, 11-21 May 1945

Campaign Background — Kamikaze!

According Appleman’s OKINAWA:THE LAST BATTLE:

Between 6 April and 22 June there were ten organized (aerial) Kamikaze attacks, employing a total of 1,465 planes as shown below:

Date of Attack…..Total…Navy Planes…..Army Planes
6-7 April……………355…….230…………….125
12-13 April………..185…….125………………60
15-15 April………..165…….120………………45
27-28 April………..115……..65……………….50
3-4 May……………125……..75……………….50
10-11 May………..150……..70……………….80
24-25 May………..165……..65……………..100
27-28 May………..110……..60……………….50
3-7 June…………….50……..20……………….30
21-22 June…………42……..30……………….15

TOTAL
………………………1465………860………………605

In addition, sporadic small-scale suicide attacks were directed against the American fleet by both Army and Navy planes, bringing the total number of suicide sorties during the campaign to 1,900.

The Battle of Okinawa — 65 years ago today

Okinawa 65 Years ago today —

May 14, 1945

On Okinawa, 20 American Marines reach the summit of Sugar Loaf Hill. This is the first of several assaults that reach and be pushed off Sugar Loaf before it is finally captured.

The airfield at Yonabaru is captured.

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This is the belated beginning of an occasional 65th anniversary commemorative series on the of the Battle of Okinawa.

Background to this point:

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If Major Hasan had been Gay, would he still be in the US Army?

Had Major Hasan made as much public about having gay lovers as he did about being an Islamist, would he have been discharged from the US Army before the recent FT Hood shooting?

If the US Army has a “watch list for gays,” then why doesn’t it have one for potential uniformed Islamists, to prevent terrorist attacks or “Sudden Jihadi Syndrome?”

This particular question has been all over conservative web sites and talk radio (The Glenn Beck show for one) this morning.

After all, TIME magazine reports 2/3 of Muslims enlisting in the US Military are resident aliens. A “Uniformed Islamist Watch List” would seem a basic counter-intelligence security precaution.

If the speculation stemming from British newspapers is true, the US Army seems to have known enough to move Major Hasan from Walter Reed hospital to FT Hood to keep him from stalking the Israeli Ambassador.

I would lay in a supply of microwave popcorn to see Senator Joe Lieberman ask Army Chief of Staff Gen. George Casey Jr. the questions of “What did the Army know, and when did they know it?” and “How does removing possible Islamists in the ranks differ from ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ procedures to remove suspected Gay soldiers?,” in front of the Senate Homeland Security Subcommittee, under oath.

The Giants of Flight 93

Hello,

I’m Trent Telenko and I have been a member of the Chicagoboyz for about a year, but I have been far too busy with my own life to post here, until now.

In October 2002 a friend of mine, Tom Holsinger, wrote about 9/11/2001 and the people on Flight 93 — Our fellow citizens who rose up and fought Al Qaeda, when all others, our military, our political leaders, our law enforcement, were frozen in surprise — at strategypage.com.

I have not read any written commemoration of their act, before or since, as moving as this passage:

Students of American character should pay close attention to Flight 93. A random sample of American adults was subjected to the highest possible stress and organized themselves in a terribly brief period, without benefit of training or group tradition other than their inherent national consciousness, to foil a well planned and executed terrorist attack. Recordings show the passengers and cabin crew of Flight 93 – ordinary Americans all – exemplified the virtues Americans hold most dear.
 
Certain death came for them by surprise but they did not panic and instead immediately organized, fought and robbed terror of its victory. They died but were not defeated.
 
Ordinary Americans confronted by enemies behaved exactly like the citizen-soldiers eulogized in Victor Davis Hanson’s Carnage and Culture.
 
Herman Wouk called the heroic sacrifice of the USS Enterprise’s Torpedo 8 squadron at the Battle of Midway “… the soul of America in action.” Flight 93 was the soul of America, and the American people know it. They spontaneously created a shrine at the crash site to express what is in their hearts and minds but not their mouths. They are waiting for a poet. Normally a President fills this role.
 
But Americans feel it now. They don’t need a government or leader for that, and didn’t to guide their actions on Flight 93, because they really are America.Go to the crash shrine and talk to people there. Something significant resonates through them which is different from, and possibly greater than, the shock of suffering a Pearl Harbor attack at home.
 
Pearl Harbor remains a useful analogy given Admiral Isokoru Yamamoto’s statement on December 7, 1941 – “I fear we have woken a sleeping giant and filled him with a terrible resolve.” They were giants on Flight 93.

Go to Strateypage.com and read the whole thing at this link http://www.strategypage.com/strategypolitics/articles/20021017.asp