Chapter XXIII
Central Pacific Timetable

By maritime strategy we mean the principles which govern a war in which the sea is a substantial factor.... The paramount concern, then, of maritime strategy is to determine the mutual relations of your army and navy in a plan of war.

JULAIN CORBETT, Some Principles of Maritime Strategy

The spring of 1943 had seen a comprehensive review of Pacific strategy and a growing conviction among many that the time had come to open up an offensive in the Central Pacific. Still ahead was the task of translating this conviction into a firm decision and clear-cut directive upon which the commanders in the field could act.

But before this decision could be made and the appropriate orders issued, it would be necessary to calculate the effect of this new offensive upon global strategy and on operations already scheduled in the Pacific and elsewhere. Resources were limited and ends, as always, would have to be fitted to means. Differences of opinion, in Washington and in the theater, would have to be considered, and, if possible, reconciled. The end result was bound to leave many dissatisfied. But dissatisfaction was better than inaction, and during the early summer of 1943 the Joint Chiefs of Staff and their planners moved slowly but surely toward a solution and a plan.

The TRIDENT Conference

The third formal U.S.-British conference of the war, known by the code name TRIDENT opened in Washington on 12 May 1943 with a full-scale meeting of the political and military chiefs of the two nations.1 On the American side, the preparations for this conference had been more thorough and comprehensive than for any of the preceding meetings. Thirty-one different studies covering a wide variety of subjects, including the strategic plan for the defeat of Japan, had been produced by the American planners in the three weeks preceding the conference. This time the Americans were determined not to be caught unprepared as at Casablanca, where Admiral King remarked that "the British had a


paper ready" on every subject raised for discussion.2

The thorough staff work that preceded the TRIDENT Conference was undoubtedly due in large measure to the reorganization of the joint staff. The need for this reform had been evident for some time, and in January 1943, immediately after the meetings at Casablanca, a special committee was established to study the problem.3 The 60-page report of this committee, submitted on 8 March 1943, provided the basis for a thorough review of the entire JCS committee structure and the reorganization that followed. With respect to strategic planning, the chief weakness of the system, it was recognized, was the burden of responsibility placed on the Joint Staff Planners, who not only represented the United States on the combined level but also directed all planning activities on the joint level while occupying positions of responsibility within their own services. The problem of the Joint U.S. Strategic Committee had never been solved either, and its members were still dissatisfied with the role assigned them.

The organization that finally emerged in May 1943 -- preliminary measures had been adopted earlier -- greatly increased the efficiency of planning on the joint level and made U.S. representation on the combined level much more effective than it had been. The membership of the Joint Staff Planners was reduced to four, two each from the Army and Navy, and the number of issues that came before it was sharply reduced by the establishment of additional committees. The most important of these was the Joint Administrative Committee, later called the Joint Logistics Committee, which was given purview over logistical matters but had to channel its studies for the Joint Chiefs through the JPS. This provision applied to other joint committees as well, and was designed to ensure the coordination of all activities and plans with basic strategic concepts.

The reorganization of May 1943 solved the problem of the JUSSC by abolishing that body and creating the Joint War Plans Committee (JWPC). Unlike the JUSSC, this new group was not charged with responsibility for broad strategy or future planning -- that function was now assigned to the Joint Strategic Survey Committee -- but only for the preparation of joint war plans. Membership in the JWPC was large, to give it an adequate staff to do the job assigned. Three senior members representing the Army, Navy, and Army Air Forces, controlled the committee and assigned the work to planning teams designated by color, the Red Team handling all Pacific and Far East matters. The work of the teams was reviewed by the senior members who, in turn, reported directly to the Joint Staff Planners.

As part of the preparation for the TRIDENT Conference, the "elder statesmen" of the Joint Strategic Survey Committee had considered carefully the question of conference tactics and the basic position the Joint Chiefs should take in their meetings with the British. The British, they thought, would seek to increase the Allied effort in the Mediterranean, possibly to the east of


Sicily. Such action, the strategists contended, would divert from the main effort against Germany and they recommended that the U.S. Joint Chiefs oppose it as contrary to sound strategy. If the British wished to undertake operations in the eastern Mediterranean, then, said the strategic planners, the U.S. Chiefs should take the position that the United States could not support its allies there but would instead commit additional resources to the Pacific. An effort in the western Mediterranean would be less objectionable, the strategists believed and could be supported if the British agreed to mount the air offensive against Germany in 1943 and the cross-Channel attack the next year.4

In the view of the senior officers on the Joint Strategic Survey Committee, strategy in the Pacific and Far East could not be divorced from the strategy in Europe. They recommended, therefore, that at the forthcoming conference the U.S. Joint Chiefs should establish the interrelationship of the two, and, while upholding the priority of the war against Germany, emphasize American interest in the early defeat of Japan. By taking this position at the start, the strategists pointed out, the U.S. Chiefs would be able to counter the anticipated insistence of the British on Mediterranean operations, and their reluctance to undertake the cross-Channel invasion, with the requirements of the Pacific theater. Moreover, if the British refused to support the campaign in Burma in furtherance of the Allied effort to keep China in the war, a cardinal principle of American strategy, the Joint Chiefs could argue that the United States would have to "expand and intensify its operations in the Pacific, in order to counteract the advantage which Japan gains by Allied failure adequately to support China."5

Though the Joint Chiefs did not formally approve these recommendations, it was evident throughout the conference that they had taken the advice of their strategic committee seriously. In his opening remarks to the Combined Chiefs on the morning of 13 May, Admiral Leahy, reading from a paper prepared by the committee, stressed the global aspects of the war and the relationship of European and Pacific strategy. Referring to the matters the Joint Chiefs considered most essential -- the cross-Channel attack and the role of China -- the admiral pointedly observed that the decision on operations to be undertaken during the next eighteen months should be based on the contribution of each to the early defeat of both enemies.6 To give added point to this emphasis on the Pacific, Leahy proposed that the strategic aims of the Allies include the maintenance and extension of "unremitting pressure" against Japan while the war against Germany was still in progress. To the British, the addition of the word -- used here for the first time -- to the accepted formula to "maintain unremitting pressure" against Japan seemed to give the war in the Far East an unjustified "pride of place" and to open the way for extensive operations in the Pacific. These operations, they feared, might divert resources from the main effort against Germany by creating "a vacuum


into which forces would have to be poured."7

Admiral Leahy's emphasis on the Pacific and Far East as a foil to the British preoccupation with the Mediterranean was a recurrent theme of the conference. Marshall, for example, expressed this view frankly on the 13th at a meeting with the British. At a separate meeting next day, the Joint Chiefs agreed that if the British would not commit themselves to the cross-Channel invasion in 1944, then the United States as a "last resort," should increase its efforts in the Pacific.8 Three days later, Admiral Leahy told the British Chiefs that under certain circumstances, U.S. interests might require an "extension of effort against Japan, if necessary, even at the expense of the European Theater."9 This clear threat was made even more explicit when the Americans declared the Germany-first strategy might have to be reversed if it seemed "that the war as a whole can be brought more quickly to a successful conclusion by the earlier mounting of a major offensive against Japan."10

These statements, revealing as they were of the American attitude, were but the prelude to the discussion of Pacific problems, which began on 20 May, a week after the conference had opened. By that time, the two most troublesome and pressing matters before the Combined Chiefs of Staff -- operations in the Mediterranean and in Burma -- had been virtually settled and the way cleared for discussion of American plans in the Pacific.

The strategic plan for the defeat of Japan was considered first. Revised to incorporate the concept of extending as well as maintaining "unremitting pressure" against Japan and to emphasize the importance of China, the plan presented by the U.S. Chiefs was basically the same 6-phase plan they had approved on 8 May.11

The British reaction was lukewarm. They thought the American proposals somewhat vague and general and felt the alternative courses of action should be analyzed more carefully. Since there was no need for an immediate decision, the U.S. Chiefs agreed to refer the problem to a combined committee of American and British planners for further study. Before the conference closed, arrangements were made for an exchange of visits between London and Washington by the planners working on the problem.12

The more pressing problem of deciding upon a schedule of operations for the Pacific during the coming year was not so easily settled. On the morning of the 21st, Admiral King explained the American program in some detail. After outlining the situation in the Pacific and the alternate routes of advance, King referred to the traditional interest of American planners in the Pacific. Ever since the acquisition of the Philippines, he said, they had studied intensively the


problems involved in reinforcing and reconquering the islands in the event of a Japanese attack. The results of these studies showed, King maintained, that no matter which route was followed the essential conditions for success in the Pacific were, first, control of the lines of communication, and second, recapture of the Philippines. Essential to both were decisive action against the Japanese fleet and seizure of the Marianas. This last, in King's opinion, was the key to the situation because of the islands' location on the Japanese line of communications."13

The plan Admiral King presented to the Combined Chiefs was virtually the same as that developed by the American planners earlier in the month. Completed on 12 May, the day the meeting opened, the plan had never been approved by the U.S. Chiefs, and probably not all of them had had an opportunity to study it.14 For the Pacific theater, the plan had set as objectives for 1943 and 1944 seizure of the Marshalls and Carolines, capture of the Solomon Islands, the Bismarck Archipelago, and Japanese-held New Guinea, and ejection of the Japanese from the Aleutians. To these Admiral King had added "the intensification of operations against the Japanese line of communications." He was most emphatic also about the necessity of maintaining and extending "unremitting pressure" against the enemy during the year ahead and suggested that, in deciding on any operation, the Chiefs ask themselves whether it would "further threaten or cut the Japanese line of communication" and "contribute to the attainment of positions of readiness" for the final assault on Japan.15

The British Chiefs accepted the American plan without discussion, and the remaining days of the conference were devoted to a careful study of the resources required to carry out this program. Seven divisions, it was estimated, would be needed to capture the Bismarck Archipelago and 2 more for the Marshalls, in addition to large air and naval forces. But if Rabaul could be neutralized by air bombardment, the number of divisions would be reduced by 2. An operation against the Carolines, which would involve the capture of Truk and Ponape, would require 3 more divisions, as well as additional heavy bombers, aircraft carriers, battleships, cruisers, and other warships. There were enough surface forces in the Pacific to meet these requirements, but 4 more divisions, Army and 2 Marine, would be required to carry out the operations scheduled for the coming year.16

The final report of the conference, approved by Roosevelt and Churchill on 25, May, reaffirmed the determination of the Allies, in cooperation with the Soviet Union, to concentrate their resources against Germany in order to secure the surrender of the Axis in Europe as soon as possible. This effort would not preclude operations against Japan for, at the insistence of the Americans, the final report provided that sufficient resources would be made available to the Pacific and Far East commanders to maintain and extend "unremitting pressure" against Japan. Once Germany was defeated, the Allies, aided possibly by the


Soviet Union, would turn their full attention to Japan and seek to force her unconditional surrender at the earliest possible date.

Specific operations in the Pacific during 1943-1944 were designed to support this broad strategic concept by: (a) securing positions from which to force the ultimate surrender of Japan; (b) keeping China in the war; and (c) holding the lines of communication. Thus, the final report of the conference embodied the 5-point program developed by the American planners before the meeting and called for:

  1. Air operations in and from China.

  2. Ejection of the Japanese from the Aleutians.

  3. Seizure of the Marshall and Caroline Islands.

  4. Seizure of the Solomons, the Bismarck Archipelago, and that portion of New Guinea held by the Japanese.

  5. Intensification of operations against the Japanese line of communications. No special significance or order of priority was intended by this listing of operations. The. accomplishment of all five, it was agreed, was essential to the defeat of Japan, and any "conflict of interest" between them and other operations would be resolved by the Combined Chiefs.17

This ambitious program, which would witness the opening of a new front in the Pacific, seemed to the Combined Chiefs to be well within the capabilities of the Allies. Unless the rate of losses increased sharply, they told the President and Prime Minister, there would be enough troops and supplies in the theater in time to meet the requirements of this program. Under existing deployment schedules, General MacArthur would have 5 U.S. Army, 1 Marine, and 3 Australian divisions available for offensive operations by January 1944; Halsey in the South Pacific, 5 Army, 2 Marine, and New Zealand divisions; and Nimitz, 3 Army and 1 Marine divisions. Still needed for the Central Pacific offensive were 2 divisions for the Marshalls and 2 for the Carolines, and these, the Combined Chiefs declared, could be made available from resources within the United States without cutting into the requirements of other areas.18

With the approval of the final report, the TRIDENT Conference came to an end. Much had been accomplished during these two weeks, and the prospects ahead were brighter than they had ever been. The Allies had agreed on a strategic concept for the conduct of the war and on the general objectives to support this strategy. Considerable progress had been made also in reaching agreement on a broad plan designed to secure the early defeat of the Axis Powers, and another meeting had been scheduled for August to complete the task begun in May. But the acceptance at TRIDENT of a cross-Channel attack, with a tentative target date of May 1944, and of the combined bomber offensive from the United Kingdom put the planning for the defeat of Germany on a firm basis. And while these plans matured, the offensive in the Mediterranean would continue, it was agreed at TRIDENT with an invasion of the Italian boot to come after the scheduled capture of Sicily.


On the Pacific side, the TRIDENT decisions reflected an increased emphasis on the importance of operations against Japan. On the basis of the agreements reached at the conference, the Americans could proceed confidently with their plans to open an offensive in the Central Pacific. The course for the year ahead had been charted, and with the operations in the Solomons, New Guinea, and the Aleutians already in progress, the Joint Chiefs could turn to the task of opening the long-deferred Central Pacific drive. Meanwhile, American and British planners, working together, would seek to develop a long-range strategy for the defeat of Japan in time for the next meeting of the two allies in August.

The Marshalls Plan

Hardly had the TRIDENT Conference ended than the Navy, anxious to employ the growing naval strength of the Pacific Fleet, began to press for early action in the Central Pacific. Though the conference had not fixed any timetable for Pacific operations, earlier plans had clearly implied, if they had not stated, that the offensive through the Mandates would begin only after the capture of Rabaul, presumably in the spring of 1944. But now the naval planners could see no reason to wait, and on 27 May, at Admiral Cooke's suggestion, the Joint Staff Planners directed the War Plans Committee to study the requirements for an invasion of the Marshall Islands and to prepare an outline plan for the operation, with recommended target dates.19

By 10 June, the joint war planners had done their job. The plan they submitted called for the invasion and seizure of the Marshalls in three steps: first, the simultaneous seizure of the central atolls, Kwajalein, Wotje, and Maloelap; second, the occupation of the outpost atolls, Eniwetok to the north and Kusaie to the south; and third, the reduction or neutralization of the remaining islands in the area, including Wake and those in the Gilbert group.20 In this way, the invading forces would strike suddenly at the enemy's stronghold before he could disperse his forces, thereby avoiding a costly and slow step-by-step advance through the atolls of the Gilberts and Marshalls. The success of the attack, the planners believed, would be further enhanced if it was made at the end of October, during the dark of the moon and just a few days before the opening of the Burma offensive.

The forces required for the execution of this plan raised serious problems. For the first time American troops would have to assault a strongly defended coral atoll. Because of what the planners called "the serious implications of failure" and because this experience would serve as a guide for later atoll operations in the Pacific, it was "almost imperative," the planners declared, that only amphibiously trained, battle-tested "shock troops" should be used for this first venture into the Japanese Mandated Islands. A corps of two reinforced divisions, they estimated, would be required, in addition to assault shipping, amphibian tractors


capable of hurdling the coral reefs, and two bomber groups (one heavy and one medium) for garrison duty.

There was only one way to meet these requirements and that was to draw upon the resources allocated to MacArthur and Halsey for CARTWHEEL. The two divisions which most closely met the criteria set by the planners were the 1st and 2d Marine Divisions, both blooded on Guadalcanal and scheduled for employment in New Guinea and the Solomons later in the year. Less experienced but possible substitutes were the Army's 7th Division, still in the Aleutians, and the unseasoned 3d Marine Division in the South Pacific. The planners, however, preferred the more experienced Marine divisions and recommended their use in the Marshalls invasion. They did this with a full awareness of the effect of such a move on CARTWHEEL. Deprived of their battle-tested amphibious troops and assault craft, MacArthur and Halsey would virtually have to abandon their drive toward Rabaul almost before it had begun -- "not later than late July 1943" the planners estimated. By that time the two commanders would presumably have occupied Kiriwina and Woodlark Islands, infiltrated New Georgia, and captured the Lae-Salamaua-Finschhafen-Madang area of New Guinea. There they would have to stand, if the recommendations of the joint war planners were accepted, until the Marshalls were taken.

Damaging as this proposal would have been to MacArthur's plans, it was not as drastic as one made by Admiral King at the same time. Anxious to end the inactivity of American forces in the Pacific and ensure their most effective utilization, King recommended to the Joint Chiefs that they (a) establish a

definite timetable for operations in the Central Pacific, starting with the Marshalls invasion on 1 November; (b) get from General MacArthur a list of the operations he planned, with "firm dates"; and (c) give to Admiral Nimitz the authority to coordinate and schedule all offensive operations in the Pacific. This last, he suggested, could be accomplished by adding to the original directive given Nimitz in March 1942 the mission to "coordinate the timing, under the general direction of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, of major amphibious offensives throughout the Pacific Theater."21 And in an accompanying note to General Marshall, King added: "I now feel that the urgency of these problems will permit of no further delay in the taking of effective action to solve them."

Admiral King's proposal to give Nimitz coordinating authority in the Pacific was, in effect, a device to make that officer the supreme commander in the theater, for coordination and timing of operations were clearly the prerogatives of command. So controversial an issue could hardly be discussed without further study and the Joint Chiefs therefore referred it to the Joint Staff Planners, who already had the Marshalls invasion plan of their War Plans Committee, with instructions to report by 14 June. At the same time Marshall sent an inquiry to MacArthur asking for more specific information on his plans. MacArthur's response hardly added much to what was already known in Washington -- Kiriwina and Woodlark would be invaded on 30 June, Lae and Salamaua on 1 September. Any estimates


about the operations to follow, MacArthur declared, would be "pure guess work," and would depend to a large degree on Japanese reaction to the initial attacks.22

The deliberations of the Joint Staff Planners were somewhat more productive. Meeting on 13 June to consider the Marshall Islands invasion plans and Admiral King's recommendations on command, the planners quickly divided along service lines. From the Army point of view, an offensive in the Central Pacific was certainly desirable, provided it had a reasonable chance of success and would not prejudice MacArthur's CARTWHEEL operations. On this last point, the Army was adamant and stood ready to back its position with strong political and military arguments.23 The Navy planners felt just as strongly about the Central Pacific, the area where the growing strength of the fleet could be most profitably employed. It was unthinkable, they said, that the fleet should remain relatively idle until CARTWHEEL was over. There had been too many delays and postponements already, said Admiral Cooke, and the time had come to open the Central Pacific offensive. He proposed, therefore, that the Marshalls operation be scheduled for about 1 November. And he was confident, moreover, that it could be carried out without disrupting MacArthur's schedule.

Despite the seeming disparity in their views, the planners were not too far apart. Both sides could agree at least that a Central Pacific offensive was desirable, that it should begin as soon as possible, and that it should not be made at the expense of operations in the South and Southwest Pacific. On that basis, they recommended to the Joint Chiefs of Staff that the Marshall Islands should be invaded about 1 November and that Admiral Nimitz be directed to submit his plans for the operation. At the same time, they instructed the Joint War Plans Committee to prepare a new plan based on a target date of 1 November or December and on the assumption that there would be no interruption to CARTWHEEL. The Joint Chiefs, the planners further recommended, should direct General MacArthur to furnish "without delay" specific information, including targets, dates, and forces, on the operations he planned to conduct in his area. These recommendations the Joint Chiefs accepted without question at their meeting of 15 June and the necessary instructions were quickly drafted.24

But on the question of command raised by Admiral King, the Army and Navy planners were unable to reach agreement and presented the Chiefs with a split report. The Army maintained it would be inadvisable for the Joint Chiefs to delegate their control over coordination and timing of operations in the Pacific to Admiral Nimitz. The proper exercise of this function, they argued, required a global viewpoint that no theater commander could be expected to possess. More important was the fact that the authority to coordinate clearly


implied control over the assignment and movement of forces in the area and therefore supreme command of the Pacific. The Navy denied that this was necessarily the case and argued the need for coordinating amphibious operations with the Pacific Fleet's responsibility for holding the line of communications, but the Army insisted that acceptance of King's proposal was tantamount to making Admiral Nimitz supreme commander in the Pacific. This they could not accept and the Joint Chiefs therefore decided to table the matter.25

The disagreement over command had no effect on the development of plans for the Central Pacific offensive. On the 15th a message went out to MacArthur informing him of the tentative plan for an invasion of the Marshall Islands on about 15 November by forces drawn largely from his and Admiral Halsey's areas. These forces, the Joint Chiefs told him, included the 1st Marine Division, then in Australia, and the 2d Marine Division in the South Pacific, together with their assault transports, cargo vessels, and the major part of Halsey's fleet. "Urgently needed for immediate planning purposes," the Joint Chiefs wrote, " is an outline of operations in the South and Southwest Pacific Areas giving dates that may affect present basis of planning for Central Pacific operations."26 The next day the Joint Chiefs directed Admiral Nimitz to submit to them his plan for the seizure of the Marshall Islands, including forces, shipping, and target dates.27

Alternate Proposals

The task now facing the joint war planners was a difficult one. What they had to do was produce a plan for the invasion of the Marshall Islands on December that would not curtail MacArthur's CARTWHEEL operation. But they could see no better way of seizing the Marshalls than by direct invasion and this, they were convinced, would require trained and experienced combat troops. Since such troops would have to come from the South and Southwest Pacific, the planners did not see how the operation could be mounted by i December without affecting MacArthur's plans. Thus, their first solution to the problem was not a solution at all but a restatement of the original plan in which the effect on CARTWHEEL was implied rather than stated.28

Realizing full well that they had failed to solve the problem, the planners tried a completely different approach and on 18 June submitted a new plan. There were, they said, three alternate courses of action to a direct invasion of the Marshalls, which they still preferred if the forces could be found. The first alternative was to approach the Marshalls from the north through Wake Island; the second, from the east by way of the islands in the eastern chain of the Marshalls group; the third, from the south by way of Nauru and the Gilberts. The first two the planners rejected as unsatisfactory; the third they thought


was a feasible plan though "definitely inferior" to the 3-phase assault on the Marshalls they had recommended earlier.29

The Gilberts-Nauru plan, as presented by the Joint War Plans Committee, called first for the establishment of advance air bases and fleet anchorages in the Ellice group and on Howland Island east of the Gilberts for reconnaissance and air support. This phase completed, the assault forces, consisting of one Marine division and one regimental combat team mounted from the South Pacific, would land simultaneously on Nauru Island and on Tarawa and Makin in the Gilberts under the cover of carrier-based aircraft. These and other islands in the group would then be developed into air bases from which Allied planes could bomb the Marshalls and reconnoiter the Carolines. Finally, after the Gilberts-Nauru position had been consolidated, garrison units would move into the area to relieve the assault force. In addition to the Marine division and regimental combat team, the operation would require 2 or 3 amphibian tractor battalions and supporting units, heavy bombardment squadrons, and 1 fighter group during the combat phase. To garrison the islands another division with support and service elements, and an air component of 2 bomber and 2 fighter groups would be needed.

This new plan no more met the requirements laid down by the Joint Staff Planners than either of the earlier plans. Moreover, the Joint War Plans Committee was itself lukewarm about the plan, as the Army member remarked, "When we get the Gilberts, we still do not have the Marshalls."30 The truth was that no one was enthusiastic about an operation in the Gilberts. But the Navy apparently felt that something had to be done with the fleet and that an invasion of the Gilberts was better than no action at all. "There seems to have grown up in our Navy," wrote one of the Army planners, "the fixation that any action by the Fleet must acquire territory."31

The Army, approaching the problem from a different point of view, refused to be stampeded into any course not based on a thorough study of the entire situation in the Pacific. The Marshalls operation, it found, was unsound and entirely unacceptable if it resulted in the postponement of CARTWHEEL; the Gilberts plan it thought feasible. But the wisest course, the Army believed, would be to "analyze all possible operations in the Pacific, east of the Philippine-Honshu line, select the desirable ones, determine the sequence, and set dates for planning purposes." If the Navy felt it must employ its fleet offensively then it should seek purely naval engagements.32

Still to be heard from was General MacArthur. Informed on the 15th of the operations projected in the Central Pacific, at the same time he was asked for specific information about his own plans, MacArthur's response five days later left no doubt about his position. As a matter of fact, he told the Chief


of Staff, he found the news most "disturbing" and expressed great concern over the effect of an invasion of the Marshalls on his and Admiral Halsey's CARTWHEEL operations. These, he reminded his Washington superiors, were only preliminary to the final assault on Rabaul, the great strategic prize toward which South and Southwest Pacific forces had been driving since August 1942. To withdraw either the 2d Marine Division from the South Pacific or the 1st, which was scheduled to invade New Britain on December, would not only rule out any campaign against Rabaul in the near future, MacArthur asserted, but would also jeopardize the success of CARTWHEEL itself.33 Two days later, he backed up this contention with Halsey's statement that the loss of the 2d Marine Division with its assault craft and shipping would deprive him of a strategic reserve of manpower to meet any sudden emergencies and put a "severe strain" on logistics in the South Pacific.34

There were other reasons why, in MacArthur's view, the withdrawal of the two Marine divisions would be unfortunate. First, it would have, as he put it, "profound political repercussions," presumably on Australia's relations with the United States. Second, it would be wasteful of shipping to transfer forces from advanced bases in the South and Southwest Pacific back to Hawaii. And finally, it seemed to represent a radical shift in the strategy of the war in the Pacific, a shift he assumed was made at TRIDENT "I am entirely in ignorance regarding the discussions and decisions of the recent Washington Conference," he told Marshall, "and request that I be advised in this respect insofar as it affects the broad concept of operations in this theater."35

As MacArthur saw it, the main effort in the Pacific was the drive northward through the Solomons and New Guinea. An invasion of the Marshalls was therefore "a diversionary attack," which, he admitted, would be helpful in making the main effort, provided the troops came from the United States. To draw them from his and Halsey's theater, he declared, would only weaken the main attack "to an extent that may result in its collapse."

Though MacArthur had not been informed of the TRIDENT decision to initiate an offensive in the Central Pacific, it must have been perfectly apparent to him that the Marshalls invasion could presage nothing else. He took the occasion, therefore, to present his own views on strategy to the Chief of Staff. He was convinced that "from the broad strategic viewpoint" the drive northward from Australia through New Guinea to Mindanao offered the greatest advantages for the Allies. It would place them most quickly in position to cut the Japanese line of communications southward while permitting them to support their own advance with land-based aircraft. "By contrast," MacArthur declared, "a movement through the mandated islands will be a series of amphibious attacks with the support of carrier-based aircraft against objectives defended by naval units and


ground troops supported by land-based aviation." This type of operation he thought was the most difficult and hazardous, and he cited the Japanese experience at Midway to make his point.

The Central Pacific route, in MacArthur's view, suffered from the further disadvantage of not offering any vital strategic objective. An offensive westward across the Pacific, therefore, would require a series of hazardous "amphibious frontal attacks" against islands of limited value. Only when the drive reached Mindanao would the forces of the Central Pacific be in position to make any large strategic gains, and this objective, MacArthur believed, he could reach more quickly and with less cost by way of New Guinea.

The fact that the Central Pacific advance had the sanction of the prewar ORANGE plan did not impress General MacArthur. He had worked on this plan and understood it thoroughly. But he did not believe it was applicable in the present situation. The Japanese conquest of Malaya and the Netherlands Indies, he observed, had partially invalidated the assumptions of ORANGE and made its execution impracticable. More important was the fact that ORANGE had assumed that Hawaii would constitute the only advanced base in a war against Japan once the Philippines were lost. The possibility that Australia might be used had not been foreseen, and its availability now, MacArthur asserted, altered the situation completely. A blind adherence to an outdated prewar plan whose assumptions were no longer entirely valid did not seem to MacArthur to justify a strategy that would involve U.S. forces in costly and time-consuming operations for objectives of little strategic value.

This forthright statement of strategy and vigorous protest against the Central Pacific advance, though it did not reverse the decision to launch an offensive westward from Hawaii, did have some effect in Washington. About a week earlier, Admiral King had proposed to Marshall that the 1st Marine Division be transferred from Australia to the Central Pacific. Marshall had postponed his reply, and now, on the basis of information from MacArthur, he turned down the request firmly. To accede to it, he told King would seriously affect the operational schedule established in CARTWHEEL.36

MacArthur's views also supported the Army's case for a more careful approach to the Central Pacific offensive and a thorough study of the alternatives. Thus, when the Joint Staff Planners met on 23 June to discuss the two plans submitted by their Joint War Plans Committee the Army member proposed and the group accepted the suggestion that the committee be directed to restudy the problem along broader lines, taking into consideration the views of General MacArthur and Admiral Halsey. As interpreted by the joint war planners, this new directive called for "determination of the most suitable and feasible operations in the Pacific, whether they apply to the Marshalls-Gilberts or not."37 They were also authorized under their new instructions to consider the possibility of seizing a position in the Admiralties


instead of trying to take Rabaul and Kavieng, and to neutralize these last two strongholds by air bombardment. "By these means," it was thought, "the Bismarcks could be controlled instead of captured, our progress accelerated, and forces made available for the Central Pacific."38

The planners of the Joint War Plans Committee had hardly settled down to work on 28 June, when the elder statesmen of the Joint Strategic Survey Committee, on their own initiative, presented the Joint Chiefs with a new set of recommendations for the Pacific.39 As they saw it, the Allied strategy in the South and Southwest Pacific was the same strategy in reverse that the Japanese had followed during the first six months of the war, less the advantages of surprise and superiority the Japanese had enjoyed. Such a strategy, they thought, held small promise of any striking success in view of the enemy's strong position in the area. Far more promising, now that the United States had recovered from its initial setback and restored the naval balance in the Pacific, was the Central Pacific offensive. This line of advance and not the advance northward from Australia, said the Joint Strategic Survey Committee, should constitute the main effort and be given the highest priority. Not only would operations along this axis prove most remunerative, but they would also make possible the most effective use of American naval strength and, perhaps, bring on a decisive engagement with the Japanese fleet. Further, an advance through the Mandates would shorten the long line of communications to the Southwest Pacific, support the defense of Australia, and contribute to "the several objectives of the South and Southwest Pacific campaigns as now conceived." Among these was undoubtedly the opening of the Celebes Sea to Allied forces, a goal the strategists believed would be greatly enhanced by the seizure of the Marshalls and Gilberts in 1943.

Though this argument had been advanced earlier in connection with the strategic plan for the defeat of Japan and approved as the basis for discussion with the British at TRIDENT the Joint Chiefs as a group were not willing at this time to give the Central Pacific priority over operations in MacArthur's area. Admiral King was the only member who favored such a policy and he proposed a full-scale strategic review on the basis of these recommendations. But none of the others agreed and the matter was disposed of by sending it to the Joint Staff Planners "for examination."40

The Army's reaction to the proposal of the Joint Strategic Survey Committee would have greatly encouraged MacArthur, the champion of the southern over the central route of advance. To the Army planners, the selection of one route over any other at this time seemed premature. How could anyone say which was the best route, they asked, until a plan for the defeat of Japan had been developed? Even then, the effect of any operation in the Pacific on operations elsewhere would have to be studied before it would be possible to decide which was the best course. Moreover, the Army planners did not believe it would be


possible to bypass western New Guinea by following the Central Pacific route to Mindanao, and doubted that such an advance would bring on a decisive fleet engagement. The Japanese, they thought, would only risk such an action if a vital area was threatened or if their fleet had the advantage. As to the first, the planners thought that only a threat to the Japanese home islands and the sea approaches to the South China Sea would bring out the Japanese Combined Fleet. It might well accept action also during an invasion of the Marshalls and Carolines, but in these areas, the Army planners pointed out, the Japanese with land-based aviation would hold the advantage.41

On about 4 July there arrived in Washington still another plan for the Central Pacific, this one prepared at Pearl Harbor by Admiral Nimitz' staff. Directed by the Joint Chiefs on 15 June to prepare a plan for the invasion of the Marshalls about 1 November, Admiral Nimitz had come up with a scheme that differed from any thus far proposed though it resembled the Gilberts plan in its requirement for air bases in the Ellice group. The initial landings were to be made on Tarawa in the Gilberts and on Jaluit and Mille in the southern Marshalls. The remaining important atolls in the Marshalls -- Maloelap, Wotje, Kwajalein, Eniwetok, and Kusaie -- would have to be seized later, Nimitz declared, for the forces required to take them in the initial assault were not then available. Under this concept, carrier-based air cover would be needed not only for the initial assault, but also for the later phases of the campaign to counter the enemy's land-based aircraft in the Marshalls.42

Admiral Nimitz' plan, like the other proposals made for a Central Pacific offensive, was referred ultimately to the War Plans Committee of the Joint Staff Planners. Certainly the joint war planners could not complain for lack of guidance or suggestion, their instructions were clear and their authority broad. They had their own earlier studies on the Marshalls and Gilberts, General MacArthur's and Admiral Halsey's views, the recommendations of the Joint Strategic Survey Committee, and now Admiral Nimitz' plan. It was up to them to produce a plan acceptable to all parties concerned.

The Gilberts-Nauru Plan

By 10 July the planners had come up with their answer. They liked best, it seemed, their own plan for an invasion of the Gilberts, which they thought "the most suitable, feasible, and acceptable of those that can be undertaken with the forces and shipping available" by December 1943.43 In reaching this conclusion, the planners reviewed the three other courses already proposed -- direct invasion of the Marshalls, the approach via Wake, and Nimitz' plan -- but rejected them for tactical reasons or because sufficient forces were not available. The preferred plan, too, would require forces not then available in the Pacific, but the committee planners hoped to get them from the South and


Southwest. This could be accomplished, they pointed out, by eliminating in the final phase of CARTWHEEL the seizure of western New Britain, thus freeing the 1st Marine Division. And if Rabaul was neutralized by air action rather than assaulted, then the 2d Marine Division also would become available. These changes, the planners believed, would give MacArthur control of the Bismarck Archipelago earlier and at less cost than under the existing plans.

To the planners on the Army General Staff, this reasoning had some obvious flaws. It provided for the capture of the Gilberts but made no provision for seizure of more important objectives in the Marshalls or Carolines. Nor did they believe that so limited an objective as the Gilberts justified the withdrawal of two divisions from the South and Southwest Pacific and the radical alteration of MacArthur's plans. The result, they thought, would be to leave the forces in both areas "in an exposed position without either having achieved a decisive objective and without resources to advance further for some time."44 As Col. Frank N. Roberts, the Army member of the Joint Staff Planners, remarked, "To go into the Gilberts at the expense of pressure on Rabaul was not acceptable to the Army."45

The Navy planners did not view the problem in this light. Though they had no specific plans for continuing into the Marshalls or Carolines, they had no intention either of stopping with the Gilberts operation. Rabaul, they argued, could be reduced more effectively by operations in the Marshalls than by other means. Thus, when the Joint Staff Planners met on 14 July, Admiral Cooke had ready a proposed directive for Nimitz to proceed with the capture of Nauru and the Gilberts on 1 December. And in anticipation of the Army's -- and MacArthur's -- objections to cancellation of the western New Britain operation and the withdrawal of the 1st Marine Division, he proposed instead that Halsey's southern Bougainville operation be canceled and that only the 2d Marine Division be transferred to the Central Pacific. This the Army countered with a proposal to invade Wake Island alone on November, an operation that would require neither the 1st nor the 2d Marine Division, and to postpone other Central Pacific operations until the forces could be made available without interrupting CARTWHEEL.46

The task of reconciling these views did not present any great difficulty. Meeting informally during the next few days, the planners agreed that provision should be made for subsequent operations into the Marshalls and Carolines and that both the western New Britain and Bougainville operations should be retained in CARTWHEEL.47 With these points settled, the Joint Staff Planners were able to reach agreement on a course of action they could submit to the Joint Chiefs. This they did on 19 July, recommending the seizure of Nauru and the


Gilberts, target date 1 December 1943, followed promptly by invasion of the Marshalls about 1 February 1944.48

In support of this recommendation, the planners reviewed carefully and fully the entire situation in the Pacific. The Japanese, they pointed out, were relatively strong in the Solomons and New Guinea, and with their network of airfields were capable of strong resistance despite the difficulty of supplying these garrisons. To relieve the pressure on the Japanese in this area by discontinuing CARTWHEEL would permit the enemy to deploy his strength, especially in aircraft, to other areas where Allied forces were not as strong. Operations in the South and Southwest Pacific, therefore, should be carried out as scheduled, the planners concluded, whether the final objective was the capture or the neutralization of Rabaul.

Any advance westward from Hawaii into the Japanese positions in the Central Pacific would not only support the drive northward from Australia but would also employ American naval strength most effectively. Faced by this double threat, the Japanese would have to disperse their air forces and defend a greatly expanded front under disadvantageous conditions. The Americans, on the other hand, could support operations in either area with their naval forces and, once the Gilberts were taken, would be able to advance further into the Central Pacific, thereby shortening and making more secure the lines of communication to the Southwest Pacific. But first it would be necessary, the planners observed, to secure an air base in the Ellice group through which to stage aircraft into the Gilberts.

The planners did not foresee any great difficulty in supplying the forces required for the Gilberts operation. The South Pacific would provide shipping, combat vessels, and the 2d Marine Division as the assault force. Later, if the Joint Chiefs decided to go through with the capture of Rabaul, they could send Halsey another division. Meanwhile, for the Gilberts, the Central Pacific could provide an Army division to back the Marine troops in the assault or as a garrison, and the North Pacific could furnish additional forces after the scheduled invasion of Kiska. Air forces for the operation would come from the Navy, the Central Pacific's Seventh Air Force, and from the North Pacific. These should provide enough, the planners thought, to make it unnecessary to draw on MacArthur's or Halsey's air strength.

On the subject of the Marshalls invasion, the planners were somewhat vague. They did not doubt that the forces required would be available by 1 February, and mentioned specifically the assault units of the Gilberts operation. Additional air units would be required, but where these would come from the planners did not say. Apparently they were satisfied to leave the solution of this problem for a later date.

The Joint Chiefs of Staff, meeting on 20 July, received the report of its planners with favor. General Marshall recognized the risk of withdrawing the 2d Marine Division from the South Pacific in the event it was decided to capture Rabaul, but agreed with his staff advisers that the risk was worth taking. He agreed also that the Gilberts invasion would support CARTWHEEL, and should


therefore be approved.49 General Arnold, too, supported the plan and thought the Army Air Forces could provide the four additional squadrons needed to ensure the success of this "important operation."50 These statements reassured Admiral Leahy, who had expressed concern lest the proposed operations interfere with MacArthur's operations, and he also gave his consent. And Admiral King went even further than the planners. The target date for the Gilberts invasion, he suggested, should be moved up to 15 November, that for the Marshalls to 1 January, in order to profit from the operations scheduled under CARTWHEEL.51 The Joint Chiefs accepted this amendment and that same day sent Admiral Nimitz a formal directive to open the Central Pacific offensive. In it they outlined the concept and purpose of the projected invasion, listed the forces he would have, and instructed him to accomplish the following:

  1. Organize and train forces for amphibious operations in the Ellice and Gilbert groups and against Nauru.

  2. Occupy and develop for use as air bases those islands required for support of the invasion.

  3. Capture, occupy, defend, and develop bases on Nauru and in the Gilberts.

  4. Prepare by 1 September plans and a detailed estimate of forces required for the invasion of the Marshalls.52

By this time the idea that it might prove unnecessary to capture Rabaul had taken firm root in Washington. The prospect of avoiding the long and costly effort that would be required to reduce this Japanese bastion was certainly attractive enough, the planners thought, to warrant serious consideration. Among the recommendations they made to the Joint Chiefs on 19 July, therefore, was one authorizing them to undertake such a study "with a view to gaining control of the Bismarck Archipelago through the seizure of Manus Island, Kavieng, and Wewak."53 The inclusion of this seemingly irrelevant matter in a study dealing with the Central Pacific was a natural one, for the planners could not avoid the fact that there was an intimate relationship between MacArthur's operations and those in the Central Pacific. If forces were not needed for Rabaul, they could certainly be used in the Marshalls. And, in any case, operations in both areas would have to be coordinated and mutually supporting.

MacArthur's views on this subject were still unknown. As a matter of fact, the first indication he had that the cancellation of the Rabaul operation was being considered in Washington came on 21 July on the heels of the Nimitz directive, when Marshall told him of the proposal to take Kavieng, Manus, and Wewak, thus isolating Rabaul and making its capture unnecessary. "If you concur in this conception," wrote Marshall, "outline plans to cover these operations ... are desired before 1 September for


Joint Chiefs of Staff consideration."54

MacArthur, most emphatically, did not concur. The capture of Wewak he considered so difficult that he had purposely planned to bypass it. He expected, moreover, that his advances north and west through the Solomons and along the New Guinea coast would be opposed by strong enemy naval forces. To meet these he would have to have the support of South Pacific fleet units and an advance naval base from which they could operate. Only Rabaul met the requirements for such a base, and its capture, he told Marshall, "is a prerequisite to a move in force along the north coast of New Guinea."55

With these views, it was hardly likely that MacArthur would look with favor on the projected withdrawal of the 2d Marine Division. His reaction, therefore, to Admiral King's request at this moment for the 1st and 3d Marine Divisions -- the latter then in the South Pacific -- for use in the Gilberts, may well be imagined. There was no need, however, to solicit his views in the matter. The request was based solely on a desire to avoid "mixed forces" and on the presumed unique qualifications of the marines for island warfare. General Marshall refused the request on more substantial grounds. "However desirable from the Navy point of view to employ only Marine divisions in the operation," he observed, "it is my opinion that both the undoubtedly bad effect on the CARTWHEEL operation and the waste of shipping far outweigh the anticipated advantages."56 Instead, he offered King the 27th Division, then in Hawaii, for use in the Gilberts campaign, an offer that was promptly accepted.57 Thus, by the end of July, the Joint Chiefs had done all they could to launch the Central Pacific offensive at the earliest possible date without sacrificing any of the operations in the South and Southwest Pacific. Admiral Nimitz had his instructions and the forces with which to carry them out. The rest was up to him.


Table of Contents ** Previous Chapter (22) ** Next Chapter (24)


1. Harry Hopkins attended this and other meetings. General Arnold was ill during the conference and Lt. Gen. Joseph T. McNarney, Marshall's deputy and an air officer, substituted for him. Minutes of the conference and the papers approved at the meetings are in the printed and bound volume entitled TRIDENT Conference, May 1943.

2. Mins, JCS Mtg, 8 May 43.

3. For a full account of the work of this committee and the discussions that followed, see Davis, Development of the JCS Committee Structure, pp. 590-683. A shorter, more general account can be found in Cline, Washington Command Post, pp. 235-39.

4. JCS 286, 6 May 43, sub: Recommended Line of Action at Coming Conf.

5. Ibid.

6. Mins, CCS Mtg, 13 May 43, an. A, JCS Memo, same date, sub: Global Strategy of the War.

7. Mins, CCS Mtg, 14 May 43. Leahy's proposal was first submitted to the British as a JSSC study, JCS 243/3, 9 Apr 43, sub: Survey of Present Strategic Sit. The British commented in CCS 199, 13 Apr 43, same bug; Memo, by British COS, 23 Apr 43, same sub; CCS Supp Mins, 23 Apr 43.

8. Mins, CCS Mtg, 13 May, and JCS Mtg, 14 May 43.

9. Mins, CCS Mtg, 17 May 43.

10. CCS 220, 19 May 43, sub: Strategic Plan for Defeat of Japan.

11. CCS 220, 19 May 43, sub: Strategic Plan for Defeat of Japan. The 8 May plan was JCS 287/1 and bore the same title. See abovech. XXII.

12. Mins, CCS Mtg, 20 May 43; CCS 251/1, CPS Memo, 25 May 43, sub: Proposals for Improving Combined Planning.

13. Mins, CCS Mtg, 21 May 43.

14. CCS 239, 20 May 43, sub: Opns in Pacific and Far East in 1943-44. For earlier action on the plan, see above, ch. XXII.

15. Mins, CCS Mtg, 21 May 43.

16. CCS 239/1, sub: Opns in Pacific and Far East in 1943-44, 21 May 43.

17. CCS 242/6, Final Rpt to President and Prime Minister, 25 May 43.

18. CCS 224/1, Implementation . . . for Conduct of the War in 1943-44, 25 May 43; Mins, CCS Plenary Session, 25 May 43.

19. Memo, JPS for JWPC, 27 May 43, sub: Examination into Pacific Theater. The JWPC in turn delegated the task to its RAINBOW Team which was to submit a report by 5 June. JWPC 39/D, 28 May 43, sub: Opns Against Marshalls, both in ABC 384 hall Islands (6-10-43), sec. 1.

20. JPS 205, Preliminary Rpt by JWPC, 10 Jun 43, sub: Opns Against Marshalls.

21. Memo, King for Marshall, 11 Jun 43, sub: Future Campaign Opns in Pacific Ocean Areas, ser. 001150, OPD 381 Security, case 163. Circulated as JCS 353, same date and title.

22. Rads, Marshall to MacArthur, 11 Jun 43, CM-OUT 4580; MacArthur to Marshall, 12 Jun 43, CM-IN 67. MacArthur's estimate was essentially the same as that he had submitted on 27 May, See above, ch. XXII.

23. Mins, JPS Mtg, 13 Jun 43; OPD Brief, Notes on Preliminary Rpt by JWPC . . . , JPS 205 in ABC 384 Marshall Islands (6-10-43), sec. 1.

24. JCS 353/1, 14 Jun 43, sub: Future Campaign Opns in Pacific Ocean Area; JWPC 54/1/D, 14 Jun 43, sub: Sequence of Certain Pacific Opns; Mins, JCS Mtg, 15 Jun 43.

25. Mins, JPS Mtg, 13 Jun 43; JCS 353/1, 14 Jun 43, sub: Future Campaign Opns in Pacific Ocean Area; Mins, JCS Mtg, 15 Jun 43.

26. Rad, JCS to MacArthur, No. 4769, 15 Jun 43, CM-OUT 6093. Copies went to Nimitz and Halsey through the Army commanders in each area, Generals Richardson in the Central Pacific and Harmon in the South Pacific.

27. Rad, King to Nimitz, 16 Jun 43, CM-IN-9883.

28. JPS 205/1, 17 Jun 43, sub: Opns Against the Marshalls.

29. JPS 205/2, 18 Jun 43, sub: Opns Against Marshalls.

30. Memo, Col William W. Bessell, Jr., for Col Roberts, 18 Jun 43, sub: Opns Against Marshalls, JPS 205/2, in OPD Exec Files.

31. Ibid.

32. OPD Brief, no date, Summation of Memos on Opns in Central Pacific; JCS 115/1, 23 Jun 43, sub: Opns in Central Pacific, ABC 384 Marshall islands (6-13), sec. 1.

33. Rad, MacArthur to Marshall, C-3302, 20 Jun 43, CM-IN 13149.

34. Rad, MacArthur to Marshall, Jun 43, 13605. For the views of the air commanders, see Rads, Arnold to Kenney and Harmon, 22 Jun 43, CM-OUT 9340 and CM-OUT 9341; MacArthur to Marshall, 24 Jun 43, CM-IN-15013; Harmon to Arnold, 25 Jun 43, CM-IN 15655.

35. Rad, MacArthur to Marshall, 20 Jun 43.

36. M, King for Marshall, 14 Jun 43, sub: Withdrawal of 1st Marine Div, JCS 238/1; Marshall for King, 23 Jun 43, same sub, WDCSA South Pacific Area.

37. JWPC 58/D, 24 Jun 43, sub: Opns in Central Pacific, Incl B; Incl A, JPS Directive, both in ABC 384 Marshall Islands (6-10-43), sec. 1; Mins JPS Mtg, 23 Jun 43.

38. Incl. B, cited above.

39. JCS 386, 28 Jun 43, sub: Strategy in Pacific.

40. Mins, JCS Mtg, 29 Jun 43.

41. OPD Brief, 29 Jun 43, Strategy of Pacific, JCS 386.

42. The information on this plan, which the author has not seen, is based on Hayes, The War Against Japan, ch. XVII, pp. 14-15.

43. JPS 205/3, to Jul 43, sub: Opns Against Marshalls-Gilberts

44. OPD Brief, no date, Opns Against Marshalls-Gilberts, JWPC 58/2, flied with JPS 205/3, ABC 384 Marshall Islands (6-10-43), sec. 1.

45. Mins, JPS Mtg, 14 Jul 43.

46. Ibid.; Draft Memos, JPS for JCS, 12 Jul 43, sub: Strategy in Pacific; Reply to Cooke, 14 Jul 43, both in OPD 381 Security case 195.

47. Draft Memo by JPS, 19 Jul 43, sub: Strategy in Pacific, with attached informal Memo, Roberts for Handy, filed with JPS 219/D, ABC 384 Pacific (6-28-43).

48. JCS 386/1, 19 Jul 43, sub: Strategy in Pacific.

49. Mins, JCS Mtg, 20 Jul PD Brief, 20 Jul 43, Strategy in Pacific, JCS 386/1, ABC 384 Pacific (6-28-43).

50. Mins, JCS Mtg, 20 Jul 43.

51. Memo by King, 20 Jul 43, sub: Strategy in Pacific, JCS 386/2.

52. Rad, JCS to Nimitz, No. 202204, 20 Jul 43, CM-IN 14465. Information copies of the message went to MacArthur and Halsey. The directive as prepared by the JPS included as app. A in JCS 386/1, 19 Jul 43, sub: Strategy in Pacific.

53. JCS 386/1, 19 Jul 43, sub: Strategy in Pacific.

54. Rad, Marshall to MacArthur, 21 Jul 43, CM-OUT 8604.

55. Rad, MacArthur to Marshall, No. C-4183, 23 Jul 43, CM-IN 16419.

56.Memo, Marshall for King, 29 Jul 43, sub: Release of 1st and 3d Mar Divs; Ltr, King to Marshall, 22 Jul 43, both in OPD 381 Security, case 196.

57. Memo, Vice Adm Richard S. Edwards for Marshall, 31 Jul 43, sub: Designation of 27th Div to Gilberts Opn, OPD 381 Security, case 196.

Transcribed and formatted for HTML by Patrick Clancey, HyperWar Foundation