Japan

Attack on the USS Panay

 By Chuck Lyons

For some Americans, World War II started early. In December 1937, four years before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor propelled the United States into the war, Japanese planes attacked an American gunboat, the USS Panay, on China’s Yangtze River, strafing and bombing the boat, sinking it, killing three American crew members, and the wounding 45 others. Read more

Japan

Duel to the Death on Saipan

By David Alan Johnson

On board one of the transports headed for the island of Saipan in early June 1944, a battalion surgeon gave a group of Marines a lecture on what they could expect when they reached their destination. Read more

Japan

How Pearl Harbor Happened

By Richard G. Higgins

Commander Mitsuo Fuchida, strike leader for Operation Hawaii and 20-year veteran of the Imperial Japanese Navy (Kaigun), strapped himself into the observer’s seat as his Nakajima B5N2 “Kate” torpedo bomber, piloted by Lieutenant Mitsuo Matsuzaki, and lifted off from the carrier Akagi on the black morning of December 7, 1941. Read more

Japan

The Bombing of Rabaul in November 1943

By Sam McGowan

In some historical circles, a mistaken impression has developed that the U.S. Navy’s Task Force 38 launched the aerial offensive on the Japanese stronghold at Rabaul, New Britain, that ultimately rendered the base useless. Read more

Japan

75th Anniversary of the Battle of Midway

By Michael E. Haskew

Seventy-five years ago this month, the pivotal battle of World War II in the Pacific occurred in the waters surrounding an otherwise obscure atoll, Midway, roughly 1,300 miles from Pearl Harbor, where American involvement in the conflict had begun so suddenly just six months earlier. Read more

Japan

Shootout in Kula Gulf

By John Damagalski

The island of Guadalcanal loomed in the distance as the warships of Task Force 36.1 approached the waters of Iron Bottom Sound on July 5, 1943. Read more