Under the Southern Cross

The South Pacific Air Campaign Against Rabaul

Under the Southern Cross cover

Under the Southern Cross

The South Pacific Air Campaign Against Rabaul

Description

A vivid narrative history of the Solomons campaign of World War II, one of the key turning points in the U.S. Navy's campaign against the Japanese in the Pacific.

If the Battle of Midway, fought in June 1942, stopped further Japanese expansion in the Pacific, it was the Battle of Guadalcanal and the following Solomons Campaign that broke the back of the Imperial Japanese Navy. Between August 7, 1942 and February 24, 1944 when the Imperial Japanese Navy withdrew its surviving surface and air units from Rabaul, the main Japanese base in the South Pacific, the US Navy fought the most difficult campaign in its history, suffering such high personnel losses during the campaign that for years it refused to publicly release total casualty figures.

Unlike the Central Pacific Campaign, which was fought by 'the new Navy,' the Solomons campaign saw the US Navy at its lowest point, using those ships that had survived the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor and other units of the pre-war navy hastily transferred to the Pacific. After the Battle of Santa Cruz in late October, USS Enterprise was the only pre-war carrier left in the South Pacific and the Navy would not have been able to resist the Imperial Japanese Navy had they sought a third major fleet action in the region. For most of the campaign, the issue of which side would ultimately prevail was in doubt until toward the end when the surge of American industrial production began to make itself felt.

Under the Southern Cross examines the Solomons campaign from land, sea and air, offering a new account of the military offensive that laid the groundwork for Allied success throughout the rest of the Pacific War.

Table of Contents

List of Maps
List of Illustrations
Foreword by CDR Curtis R. Dosé , USNR (Ret)
Introduction
1: Operation Watchtower
2: Battle of the Eastern Solomons
3: The Cactus Air Force
4: Green Hell
5: Marine Aviation's Finest Hour
6: All In
7: The End of the Beginning
8: Whistling Death
9: Pappy Gunn and the Sunsetters
10: Pearl Harbor Avenged
11: Jay Zeamer's Eager Beavers
12: Reinforcement
13: The Surprise was Absolute
14: Bloody Tuesday
15: The Jolly Rogers
16: Sixty-One Days
17: Finale in the South Pacific
Bibliography
Index

Product details

Published Nov 08 2022
Format Paperback
Edition 1st
Extent 352
ISBN 9781472838230
Imprint Osprey Publishing
Illustrations 32pp plate section in b&w
Dimensions 9 x 6 inches
Series General Military
Short code GNM
Publisher Bloomsbury Publishing

About the contributors

Author

Thomas McKelvey Cleaver

Thomas McKelvey Cleaver has been a published write…

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