May 1944: Chinese troops advance through the streets of the ancient city of Tengchung, held by the Japanese for two years. The Japanese garrison at Tengchung was wiped out.

Japanese

The Salween Offensive: Blundering to Success in Burma

By Marc D. Bernstein

After launching an invasion of Burma (today Myanmar) not long after Pearl Harbor, the Imperial Japanese Army went on to overrun much of China by May 1942 and closed the Burma Road—the vital, 717-mile-long mountain highway built in 1937-1938 that ran from Kunming in southern China to the Burmese border. Read more

Japanese

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

Japanese

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

Japanese

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

Japanese

The Men Against the Bomb

By Andrew J. Rotter

The men and women who imagined and then built the atomic bomb thought they were doing something different from what makers of “conventional” weapons did. Read more

Japanese

LIFE Photographer Ralph Morse’s War

By Susan Zimmerman

In an age before television and instant communications, Americans wanted to see what was going on in the world’s “deadliest conflict in human history,” and LIFE magazine was making a name for itself as THE war magazine during World War II. Read more

Japanese

The Amazing Voyages of the USS O’Brien

By Eric Niderost

At exactly three o’clock in the afternoon on February 25, 1944, a crowd gathered at the Boston Navy Yard for the commissioning ceremony of the USS O’Brien (DD725), a destroyer of the Sumner class. Read more

Japanese

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