Chapter XXVI
Review and Adjustment

Strategy decides where to act; logistics brings the troops to this point; grand tactics decides the manner of execution and the employment of troops.


No sooner had the program for the Pacific been approved on the highest level than it had to be adjusted to meet changed conditions. The stresses and strains created by limited resources as well as the conflicting interests and competing requirements of the theater commanders dictated other changes. Thus, in the period between August and December 1943, the plans so recently made were reviewed once more and revised as necessary. There was nothing unique or unusual in this fact. Planning was a continuous process and up to the moment of execution no plan was ever considered so firm that it could not be challenged and changed to attain a given objective more effectively or at less cost.

Ships and Plans

The men and means required to carry out the series of operations planned for the Pacific in 1943 and 1944 had been carefully computed at Quebec. The report of the planners had been optimistic, and it was partially on this basis that the ambitious program mapped out for the coming year had been adopted.1 The one item about which there was some doubt was shipping. Certainly there was ample evidence that the day of plenty had not yet arrived and that the chronic shortage of ships that had so plagued the Pacific commanders in the past would continue to affect planning. As a matter of fact, on the day the conference opened, General MacArthur had submitted to Washington his estimate of the shipping he would need during the coming months to meet the requirements of CARTWHEEL. The total came to seventy-one Liberty ships and ten freighters to move 150,000 men with their equipment.2 In view of the requirements of other theaters, this was a big order to fill. But by permitting MacArthur to retain seventy-one Liberty ships for intratheater movements and providing some but not all of the troop transports requested, the Washington authorities were able to promise MacArthur


that he would get most of what he needed.3

In the Central Pacific, where plans were being matured for the invasion of Nauru and the Gilberts in November and of the Marshalls in January 1944, there were other problems.4 At the time the directive had been issued for the seizure of these islands, little was actually known about them. They had been selected as the initial objectives largely because of their location. It had been assumed that they could be seized with the forces available, but with the understanding that the commanders in the field would require more information about the targets before the invasion. It was for this reason that the Washington planners had emphasized the importance of preliminary operations to occupy and develop air bases in the Ellice group and elsewhere for reconnaissance as well as support. Thus, among the first steps taken in the theater to prepare for the Gilberts-Nauru invasion was the occupation of Baker Island, 480 miles east of the Gilberts, and of two additional islands in the Ellice group. Airfields were quickly built and by early September aircraft from these and other nearby islands were flying over the targets.5

The information received at Pearl Harbor as a result of this aerial reconnaissance, and from other sources, raised some doubts in the minds of the theater planners. The seizure of Nauru, it now appeared, would be a more formidable task than had been thought. The island's coast line was generally precipitous and the terrain favorable for defense. Certainly the 27th Division, which had the task of taking the island, would find it no easy job and could expect heavy losses.

There were other reasons why the Nauru operation did not appeal to Nimitz' planners. The island lay about 450 statute miles west of Tarawa, where the 2d Marine Division was to land. To assault both islands simultaneously would require splitting the supporting naval forces and create a situation favorable to Japanese counterattack against either of the supporting elements. Under these conditions, the dispersal of the fleet represented a risk the naval commanders had no wish to assume. Moreover, an assault against two widely separated targets would require more transports and cargo vessels than would otherwise be needed, and shipping facilities in the theater were already being strained to the utmost. Any plan that


would result in a saving of precious shipping space was always welcome.

Fortunately, the theater planners had an alternative target that would solve all these problems. Why not take Makin Atoll, about 100 miles north of Tarawa, instead of Nauru? It was close enough to Tarawa to permit naval forces to support both operations from one area, and to effect economy in shipping. From the strategic point of view, it would serve as well as or better than Nauru as a base for future operations against the Marshalls; tactically, it would present fewer problems. It was neither as well defended by the Japanese nor as difficult to assault as Nauru.6

The arguments for the substitution of Makin for Nauru convinced Admiral Nimitz of the need for a change. He discussed the problem about 25 September with Admiral King, who was then at Pearl Harbor, and King, too, thought the idea a good one. The next day Nimitz formally requested the Joint Chiefs to authorize the change on the grounds that the occupation of Nauru "will involve losses of personnel and material, and a logistic burden which outweigh advantages."7 Seizure of Makin, he asserted, was well within the theater capabilities in shipping and logistics and would reduce expected losses "to acceptable figures." And to allay any concern in Washington about the Japanese on Nauru, he explained that he planned to neutralize that island during the Gilberts and Marshalls operations. Thereafter, its position would be, as he put it, "similar to that of Kiska after our capture of Attu."

Admiral Spruance, then Nimitz' chief of staff and commander-designate of the forces assigned to capture the Gilberts, later described the decision to substitute Makin for Nauru as follows:

Nauru was an uplifted circular atoll with no lagoon, no protection except on the lee side, a narrow beach and inshore of that a cliff about 100 ft. high. It lay about 380 [nautical] miles west of Tarawa toward Truk. The operation called for would have divided our fleet into two parts, out of supporting distance of each other, each one engaged in conducting a difficult amphibious operation. The Japanese Fleet at Truk was about equal to our own in strength, and, except for our submarines, we had no means of knowing what it was doing. I protested against this situation, but got no change. The more we studied the problem of how to capture Nauru, the less we liked it. Finally, Gen. Holland Smith wrote a letter recommending we not take Nauru. Admiral Turner and I both added our endorsements concurring, and I handed it to Admiral Nimitz at his morning conference, at which Admiral King and Admiral C. M. Cooke were present (about 25 Sept). Admiral King read the letter and then asked me what I proposed to take instead of Nauru. I replied "Makin," and said that Makin was in the direction we were going and would be of much more value to us than Nauru, that Nauru had been of value to the Japanese, but it would not be after we took the Gilberts. After some discussion Admiral King agreed to the change, and recommended it to the JCS.8

There was little objection to Nimitz' proposal. In view of Admiral King's advance approval, there was no comment at all from the Navy. The Army planners reviewed the problem briefly and concluded that on the whole Makin was


a more desirable objective than Nauru. As a matter of fact, they pointed out, they would have included it in the original plan themselves, "but for limitation of resources."9 The only aspect of the problem that concerned the Air Forces was the fact that Makin had no air facilities and would require extensive development before it could be used by the Americans. Nauru, on the other hand, had been developed by the Japanese and its capture would provide the Americans with a ready-made air base. But having expressed this concern, General Arnold raised no objection to the substitution and on 27 September the Joint Chiefs gave their formal consent. A week later, Nimitz formally directed Admiral Spruance to seize Makin, Tarawa, and Apamama -- target date, 20 November 1943.10

By the time this change was made the plan for the invasion of the Marshalls had also been reviewed and adjusted. Directed by the Joint Chiefs to have ready by 1 September an outline plan and an estimate of the forces required for the Marshalls operation, Admiral Nimitz had wasted no time. The plan was ready on 20 August and when the Joint Chiefs returned from Quebec it was waiting for them. With it was a proposed directive for the operation and a request for a firm planning date.11

The plan proposed by Nimitz called for the simultaneous seizure of the three Marshalls atolls -- Kwajalein, Wotje, and Maloelap -- and the neutralization of Jaluit and Mille. Forces for the operation -- the 7th Infantry Division, the 4th Marine Division, and the 22d Marines reinforced -- were to be mounted from the Hawaiian Islands and bases in the South Pacific, with the Ellice Islands and the Gilberts as staging points. Reconnaissance and air bombardment would precede the landings. Assuming the successful completion of the Gilberts operation, Nimitz thought he could launch the invasion of the Marshalls on 1 January 1944, the date set by the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

This plan was all right as far as it went, but the Washington planners did not think it went far enough. The goals set at Quebec called for a more ambitious plan that would place American forces in position to move next into the Carolines and, perhaps, into the Marianas. The objectives Nimitz had set himself would take him only into the eastern and central Marshalls. Eniwetok and Kusaie in the western Marshalls and Wake Island to the north were the goals Nimitz should strive for, the planners thought. Not only would the seizure of these islands consolidate U.S. control of the Marshalls, but the islands would also provide the bases for rapid advance westward or northward.12

When the planners sought to broaden the scope of Nimitz' plan, they ran up against the shortage of shipping -- the perennial problem of Pacific planning. Ultimately the shortage was reduced to


nine transports and ten cargo vessels. If the planners wanted Nimitz to include Eniwetok, Kusaie, and Wake in the Marshalls operation and still retain the January target date, they would have to find these additional vessels for him. The shipping experts, though they confirmed the shortage, thought it could be done. There was a chance that some ships from the Atlantic or from the South and Southwest Pacific might be available, or that other types of vessels could be used for the operations. This was enough for the Navy planners. Admiral Nimitz, they declared, should be directed to take the three additional objectives concurrently with or immediately after the seizure of Kwajalein, Wotje, and Maloelap.13

The Army planners also favored a broader Marshalls plan, but were less optimistic about the shipping prospects. They feared also that it might provide a justification for taking from the Southwest Pacific the additional ships required by Nimitz and thus adversely affect CARTWHEEL. As a safeguard against this danger, therefore, they proposed that the target date of 1 January be made contingent on the availability of shipping. In effect, this provision would introduce all sorts of possibilities for change and might well affect the long-range schedule for operations in the Central Pacific. For this reason, and because he wished to meet Admiral Nimitz' request for a firm planning date, General Marshall sided with the Navy planners. Thus, the directive that went to Nimitz on 1 September retained the target date of 1 January while adding the additional mission of taking Wake, Eniwetok, and Kusaie.

Though Marshall overruled his planners on the date of the invasion, he was as determined as they that operations in the South and Southwest Pacific should not be sacrificed to the Central Pacific drive. He insisted, therefore, that Nimitz be told that operations currently planned under CARTWHEEL would continue and that post-CARTWHEEL operations in New Guinea, New Ireland, and the Admiralties would begin about February 1944. The Joint Chiefs accepted this condition and it was included in the final directive sent to Nimitz.14

Agreement on a plan and target date for the invasion of the Marshalls did not signify that there was no further reason for concern over shipping. Rather it raised the possibility of new shortages, for, as General Marshall noted, Nimitz' plan called for more shipping than had been used to transport the 34,000 troops of Patton's force in the North African invasion. If Central Pacific operations continued to consume such vast quantities of ships, there was indeed reason for apprehension, Marshall thought. He therefore asked that Central Pacific shipping requirements be studied more closely to see what effect they would have on operations in other theaters, and whether they could be reduced. The other Chiefs gave their assent to this proposal and on 6 September the planners were directed to make the survey.15


The results were distinctly encouraging. There would be ample cargo space to meet all requirements, the planners reported. Moreover, the shortage in troop carriers created by the allocation to Nimitz of nine additional ships could be met by converting freighters to transports. By June of 1944, the planners estimated, the deficit of 33,900 spaces would have been converted to a surplus of 86,000 spaces for Pacific personnel. Thus, the planners concluded, the operations projected for 1943-1944 could go forward as scheduled, if all else went well." The outlook for the future, so far as shipping was concerned, was brighter than it had ever been.

This optimistic forecast did not mean there were enough vessels of all types to take care of immediate needs. Assault ships such as the LST and other landing craft were still in short supply and would continue to affect operations in all theaters, especially as the date for Overlord approached. To provide MacArthur with sufficient craft of this type for CARTWHEEL, for example, it was necessary to authorize exchange between his and Halsey's area, and one War Department observer thought the speed of the New Guinea advance would be increased if MacArthur had more shipping.17

Nor were there sufficient ships in the fall of 1943 to enable the War Department to send to the Pacific the additional units requested by the theater commanders, even if these units had been available. General Harmon's request for an Army division early in November was turned down because of the shortage of shipping, and Richardson was told by General Handy, when he complained about the lack of ships, that "the extremely critical shipping situation" was not confined to the Pacific. Allocations to the Central Pacific, he was told, had been made only after careful consideration of the ships available and operational requirements. It was "in no sense," added Handy, "a hit-and-miss guess which fails to consider the needs of each area."18

Meanwhile, the date for the Marshalls invasion, which apparently had been firmly fixed on 1 September, had come under re-examination. The theater planners in Hawaii had tried to produce a plan that would meet the specifications laid down by the Joint Chiefs, but finally had to admit their failure. With the Gilberts campaign looming so close, they did not see how they could train the troops, reconnoiter the Marshalls, repair damage to vessels, and complete construction in the Gilberts -- all in time to meet the scheduled date of 1 January. The only solution seemed to be to delay the invasion and on 25 October Admiral Nimitz so recommended, "with considerable regret." The new date, he proposed, should be 31 January. He would make every effort "to anticipate this date," he promised, but at the same time he warned Admiral King that if damage to ships during the Gilberts operations proved excessive it might be necessary


to postpone the Marshalls invasion still further.19

Short of providing Nimitz with additional ships and trained troops, neither of which were available, there was nothing to be done but accept Nimitz' recommendation and urge him to move as fast as possible. The joint planners, after studying the matter, concluded hopefully that the advantages of more thorough preparation outweighed the disadvantages occasioned by the delay. And they discovered unexpected benefit in the fact that a delay in the Marshalls invasion would place it close to MacArthur's scheduled attack against Wewak on February. The two operations coming so close together, the planners reasoned, would work to the advantage of both.20

All of the Joint Chiefs except General Marshall seemed ready to accept this view and approve the delay without question. Theater commanders were always making such recommendations, General Marshall pointed out, and it was up to the Joint Chiefs, in considering these matters, "to decide the relation between urgency and perfection."21 Reminded thus of their responsibilities, the Joint Chiefs reviewed the matter more carefully, and on Admiral King's suggestion approved the delay but with the proviso that the date of the invasion should not be later than 31 January. "You will spare no effort," King wrote in a separate communication to Nimitz, "to speed up training and other preparations, and thus get on with the war."22

Strategic Role of the North Pacific

The role of the North Pacific in the strategy of the war against Japan had, by the fall of 1943, been studied exhaustively. From the outset, it had been apparent that the resolution of this question was largely dependent upon the role of the Soviet Union in the Far East and its willingness to cooperate with the United States, at least to the extent of making available bomber bases in the Maritime Provinces. Thus, the first studies of a possible offensive in the North Pacific had been sparked by the fear that Japanese troops would move into Siberia and bring Russia into the war under disadvantageous circumstances. Combined with this threat was the strong desire of the Air Forces to utilize Siberian bases for air attacks against the Japanese home islands at such time as Russia entered the war. In the face of Stalin's determination to maintain a scrupulous but armed neutrality in the Far East and avoid a two-front war, the first overtures for cooperation in the North Pacific had come to nought.

The occupation of Adak at the end of August 1942 raised again the question of a North Pacific offensive.23 Though the means for such an offensive were not then available, the possibility of a Japanese attack against the Soviet Union could not be discounted. To prepare for such a contingency Admiral King proposed on 21 September that plans be


made not only to aid Russia but also to use Soviet territory -- which would presumably be available in case of a Japanese attack. The whole problem of the North Pacific, King urged, should be carefully studied to determine "the potentialities of a campaign against Japan via Alaska, the Aleutians, and the Bering Strait into the Kamchatka Peninsula via northeast Siberia."24

The special committee of Army, Navy, and Marine officers formed to make this study, spent more than two months on the job. Its massive report, boiled down to essentials, called first for the expulsion of the Japanese from the Aleutians in order to build forward air bases there and to secure the line of communications to Siberia -- a project already under way; second, the establishment of a supply and air base at Petropavlovsk on the Kamchatka Peninsula; and third, the capture of Paramushiro and Shimushu in the Kurils. These operations, and others, the committee made clear, were contingent upon the entry of the Soviet Union into the war and its willingness to permit U.S. forces the use of its territory. But even under these conditions, the committee believed, it would not be possible to mount large-scale operations against the Kurils or on the Asiatic mainland for some time. The committee recommended, therefore, that a division be readied for the occupation of Petropavlovsk, whose retention it considered essential for U.S.-Soviet cooperation; that air facilities in Alaska and the Aleutians be expanded; that small naval craft (two squadrons of PT boats) be earmarked for dispatch to Siberia; that the Aleutians be cleared; and that plans be made for the operations outlined.25

There were numerous objections to this ambitious program. Not only would it immobilize a division, divert resources to Alaska, and initiate operations prematurely, but it was also based on the doubtful assumption that the Soviet Union would cooperate with the United States in the execution of these plans. Despite these objections, the committee finally submitted virtually the same recommendations to the joint planners. It did, however, stress the need for coordination with the Soviets and for obtaining information from them on the strength and disposition of their forces, the logistical support they could be expected to provide in case of operations in the Kurils or on Kamchatka, and the status of airfields, communications, and transportation in the area. These recommendations the joint planners passed on without modification to the Joint Chiefs on 30 December. They in turn approved the recommendations, but only as a basis for further planning.26

Though each of the services could and did prepare to carry out its share of this program, it was impossible to make any realistic plans involving the use of Soviet territory or combined action with Soviet forces until additional information was secured. The prospects for getting this information seemed bright at the time. Maj. Gen. Follett Bradley, who had gone


to Moscow in July 1942, had only lately arrived in Washington. Stalin, Bradley was convinced, would not agree to any action that could be interpreted as hostile to Japan so long as the Soviet Union was at war with Germany. But if Japan attacked the Soviet Union, Bradley believed that Stalin would permit the United States to base its planes in Soviet territory. As a matter of fact, Stalin had agreed in October to permit the Americans to conduct a survey of Eastern Siberia, but Bradley had preferred to wait. He still thought it better to wait and not press the Russians for information until the United States was ready to make a definite commitment of aircraft to the Russians. Such a procedure, he told General Marshall, would allay Stalin's suspicions and demonstrate America's resolution to stand firmly by its Russian ally if Japan attacked.27

On the basis of Bradley's report, and on Marshall's recommendation, the Joint Chiefs agreed that Stalin should be assured by the President that he would receive American support in case of a Japanese attack. This support, they further agreed, should consist of three heavy bombardment groups (105 planes), which Arnold was directed to provide. The Russians, in return, were to provide the airfields and certain items of supply, and permit General Bradley to make the survey already authorized. The President approved the recommendations and on 30 December sent Stalin a personal message covering these points.28 Meanwhile, on the assumption that Stalin would give his consent, Bradley began to make his preparations for the survey.

It was at this point that the recommendations made by the committee studying North Pacific strategy reached the Joint Chiefs. There seemed every reason then to believe that the information needed to carry out these recommendations would be forthcoming. But within a few days this optimism had given way to a growing pessimism, for Stalin had interpreted the message as an outright offer of 100 bombers, thereby giving to the American proposal a meaning never intended. He would be delighted, he said, to get these planes, but he needed them on the German front, not in Siberia. If the first message had been misunderstood, Roosevelt's second could not have been. This time Stalin's reply made it perfectly clear that he wanted no American planes in Siberia. More than that, he had changed his mind about permitting Bradley to make the survey. "It would seem obvious," he told the President, "that Russian military objects can be inspected only by Russian inspectors." Nor did he think any purpose would be served by having General Marshall come to Moscow, a suggestion Roosevelt had made earlier.29

With this exchange, the correspondence ended. And with it died the hope for any immediate arrangements with Stalin for concerted action in the Far East, a hope that for a brief moment had flickered so brightly. The Soviet Union, it was clear, wanted planes for the German front, not closer collaboration with the United States in the Far East. Thus, when the joint planners



were reviewing Pacific strategy in May 1943, they rejected the idea of an offensive against Japan from the Aleutians on the ground that such an offensive would have to await Soviet entry into the war.30

Though the Russians in the months that followed the Roosevelt-Stalin exchange gave no sign of any change in their attitude, the American planners were forced by events to turn once again to a consideration of the role of the North Pacific. Early in August 1943, General DeWitt forwarded to Washington a plan for the invasion of Paramushiro and Shimushu in the Kurils, one of the projects proposed eight months earlier by the planners. If the War Department would increase his ground forces and strengthen the bomber components of the Eleventh Air Force, DeWitt wrote, he stood ready to launch the invasion of the Kurils in the spring of 1944.31

DeWitt's optimism was not shared by Admiral Nimitz or the planners in Washington. The Pacific Fleet was fully engaged in the South Pacific and neither Nimitz nor King saw any possibility of making available the surface forces required for such an operation. Finding the troops and planes needed for the offensive DeWitt had in mind would be difficult enough, but even more difficult would be the task of finding the ships and building the bases from which to mount and support a Kurils invasion. Moreover, such an operation, if it was to prove of real value, would have to be followed by operations against the Japanese home islands themselves. To accept DeWitt's proposal, therefore, the War Department would have to be prepared to commit forces of such size as to affect all other operations in the Pacific, and probably those in Europe as well, and to follow up with a major assault against the enemy's last citadel.32

But there were solid advantages to the proposal for an offensive across the North Pacific. For one thing, it would provide employment for the large ground and air forces already in the area. The very existence of such forces created a demand for their use. And few could dispute the strategic importance of the Aleutians. This importance derived from the position of the islands in the narrow seas between the American continent and Asia, a position that affected the Soviet Union as well as the United States and Japan. Except for China, the Aleutians provided the only bases then in American hands from which the new long-range B--29 bombers -- still in the production stage -- could reach Japan. Thus, when the proposal for an invasion of the Kurils by way of Paramushiro came up for discussion in August 1943 it was not rejected but referred to one of the planning committees for further study.

Before the committee had finished its work, General Marshall reopened the whole problem of the North Pacific early in September by proposing to the Joint Chiefs that they reduce the size of the garrison there during the next year to


about 80,000 men. There was little objection to this reduction but it raised inevitably the question of the future role of the forces in the North Pacific. Would they be required later to move into the Kurils? If so, then the garrison might later have to be increased. If not, then perhaps greater reductions were justified. At any rate, it was time, the Joint Chiefs decided, to get an answer to these questions. The joint planners were the ones who got the job. It was up to them to come up with the answers on the size of the Alaska garrison and "whether it would be preferable to keep large forces in the Aleutians and mount operations against Paramushiro from there, or whether such operations should be mounted from the United States."33

Before making their recommendations, the planners solicited the views of the theater's senior officers at a conference held in Washington. Present at the meeting, which began on 15 September, were General Buckner, the Army commander in Alaska, Rear Adm. John W. Reeves, his naval opposite, and Capt. Oswald S. Colclough, Admiral Kinkaid's representative. Buckner took the lead in presenting the case for an increase in the theater's forces and an offensive toward Japan. Emphasizing the logistical problem in the area and the difficulty of air and naval operations he estimated he would need 2 amphibiously trained divisions, in addition to the 2 he already had, plus 4 heavy bombardment squadrons and a chain of air bases. With these reinforcements, Buckner believed (and the others supported him) that offensive operations against Paramushiro could begin in the spring of 1944. This move, in his view, was but part of a larger scheme which envisaged operations later against the Japanese home islands. Only in this way could decisive results be achieved. And once the offensive gained momentum, the Russians, Buckner believed, would join the other Allies fighting Japan, thereby bringing the war to an early close.34

Though the planners were not prepared to accept entirely the recommendations of the theater commanders, it was not because of a failure to appreciate the enormous strategic significance of the North Pacific for the future as well as the present. With prophetic insight, they pointed to Russia's traditional interest in the region and the uncertainty of "the pattern of future relationships." Aside from every other consideration, they believed that common sense and the interests of the United States dictated "that we properly organize this area for defense and for offense, and at the earliest practicable date."35 On this basis the planners readily supported the development of a large supply base at Adak, the construction of airfields suitable for the B-29's, and the shipment of two groups of these bombers "if operational and available" to the Aleutians. These projects, they pointed out, would be useful in the future "come what may during or after the war."

On the more immediate questions -- operations against Paramushiro and the size of the force to be assigned to the area -- the planners had some doubts. Though the final answers would depend upon studies then in progress, they thought it unlikely that operations


against Paramushiro could be initiated until the spring of 1945 and that the strength in the theater should therefore be reduced to 80,000 men, as General Marshall had suggested. But if it was decided to open the offensive a year earlier, as the theater representatives urged, then the garrison would have to be maintained as its existing strength.36

The "elder statesmen" of the Joint Strategic Survey Committee -- Admiral Willson and Generals Embick and Fairchild -- were in substantial agreement with the planners. Having recently reviewed the "categories of defense" assigned to Alaska and the Aleutians and found them too high, the committee strongly supported the reduction of the garrison to a size commensurate with the mission assigned and the possibility of attack.37 Like the Joint Staff Planners, the Strategic Survey Committee thought there was little chance of mounting an operation against Paramushiro before the spring of 1945 and therefore no necessity for retaining more than 80,000 men in the area. But the committee differed with the joint planners in the matter of base development. Construction, they believed, should be limited to those facilities necessary to support the assault on Paramushiro and the operation of B-29's, then scheduled for completion in the spring of 1944.38

The Joints Chiefs found these recommendations generally acceptable, differing with the planners only in minor matters. At General Arnold's request the number of B--29 groups that would be sent to the theater was not specified, and all concurred in the general statement that the reduction of troop strength in the theater should be accomplished as soon as possible. Admiral King objected mildly to the category of defense assigned the Aleutians, maintaining that the Japanese were still capable of an offensive in the area. None of the others agreed with this "concession of superhuman powers to the Japanese" and when General Handy pointed out that a failure to make the change in defense status would justify the retention of forces in the theater adequate to meet a major attack, Admiral King withdrew his objections.39 The Joint Chiefs thereupon gave their approval on 5 October 1943 to the recommendation of the planners to reduce the size of the Aleutians garrison while preparing the base facilities and airfields for a future offensive in the Kurils, if one should be decided upon. Though that decision was left for the future, the theater commanders were directed to prepare for the Paramushiro operation, with the tentative target date set for the spring of 1945.40


If the Alaskan commanders could no longer look forward to strong reinforcements and offensive operations in 1944, they had at least a fair chance of getting two or more groups of the coveted B-29's as things stood. They had been instructed to have ready by the spring of the year airfields on which to base the long-range bombers when they came, and the commanders turned to this task with zeal. But all their efforts to secure a definite commitment from Washington on the number of planes they would receive and the date of arrival were unavailing. Plans for the use of the B-29's were only then being considered in Washington, and the Aleutians was but one -- and the least important -- of several possible theaters for B--29 operations.41 The problem was an important one. closely related to the strategy for the defeat of Japan, and no decision was reached until well into 1944. But even before then it was clear that no B-29's would be sent to the Aleutians before the spring of 1945, if then. By that time the war against Japan had progressed so far that there was little or no prospect of active operations in the North Pacific.


In the Southwest Pacific, General MacArthur, like Admiral Nimitz, was also revising his plans "to get on with the war." The Trobriands, Nassau Bay, and Munda airfield had been captured by early August, but much remained to be done to complete CARTWHEEL. Halsey's forces had still to extend their control to the remaining islands in the New Georgia group, after which they would move into the southern Bougainville area, seizing the Shortland Islands, Ballale, Faisi, Buin, Kahili, and Tonolei Harbor. The program MacArthur had laid out for himself in CARTWHEEL was no less ambitious and included the capture of Lae, Salamaua, Finschhafen, and western New Britain.

Planning for these moves began in the summer of 1943 when MacArthur ordered Admiral Halsey to prepare for the invasion of southern Bougainville and the commander of the New Guinea Force to make plans for the capture of the Markham Valley -- Huon Peninsula area of New Guinea.42 This latter task fell to General Blamey, who arrived at Port Moresby and assumed command of New Guinea Force on 20 August. Plans for the capture of Lae, Salamaua, and Finschhafen were by that time already well under way. The American and Australian troops in the vicinity of Salamaua were to continue to press the attack against that objective as a cover for the invasion of Lae. The 9th Australian Division was to take Lae, landing a few miles to the east on 4 September. The next day, the 503d U.S. Parachute Infantry Regiment was to drop on Nadzab in the Markham Valley, seize and develop the airstrip, and block enemy movements overland from Wewak to Lae. Australian troops, including eventually the 7th Division, would be flown up to Nadzab and from there advance eastward down the Markham Valley toward Lae at the mouth of the Markham


River in conjunction with the 9th Australian Division drive up the valley. Meanwhile, other Australian troops were to consolidate Allied control of the Markham Valley and secure additional airstrips by seizing other important sites in the area. The move to the north shore of the Huon Peninsula would begin with the assault on Finschhafen, set for mid-October.

Halsey's plans for the capture of southern Bougainville and the small islands immediately to the south were based originally on the availability of the 3d Marine and 25th Infantry Divisions. But the commitment of the 25th to New Georgia and the cancellation of the Rabaul campaign altered the situation radically. Experience in New Georgia also dictated adjustments in the initial concept of the Bougainville operation. At the end of July, therefore, Admiral Halsey proposed to MacArthur that the original plan be modified to relieve him of the necessity of taking Buin, Kahili, and Tonolei Harbor on the island of Bougainville itself. The major objectives of the operation could be achieved, he declared, by seizing the Shortlands and Ballale in the straits south of Bougainville.43

With MacArthur's approval, planning proceeded on this basis for more than a month. Then, early in September, Halsey came up with another idea -- take the Treasury Islands and Choiseul south of the Shortlands, and there establish bases from which to neutralize the increasingly strong Japanese positions in the southern Bougainville area. After that he and MacArthur could decide, on the basis of reconnaissance, whether a landing on Bougainville itself was necessary. From the Treasuries, he pointed out, he could move to Empress Augusta Bay on the west side of the island; from Choiseul, to Kieta on the east coast.44

Halsey's new plan, which Rear Adm. Robert B. Carney, South Pacific chief of staff, carried to Brisbane on 10 September, did not meet with MacArthur's approval. The most important objection to it was that it would not place Halsey's fighter aircraft in position to strike Rabaul in time to cover the Southwest Pacific advance to Cape Gloucester at the end of December. To do that, said MacArthur, Halsey would have to seize airfield sites on the island of Bougainville, specifically at Empress Augusta Bay, on 1 November. The Treasuries and Choiseul could be taken between 20 and 25 October to provide PT bases and radar sites. A week later, at a meeting attended by General Harmon, MacArthur reiterated these points but left the decision on where the Bougainville landing would take place to Admiral Halsey.45

Halsey had his orders; the only question he now had to decide was where on Bougainville he would land. The Washington planners had studied the change and recommended to the Joint Chiefs that they take no action. MacArthur was within his rights and the operation


within the terms of his directive.46 By the end of September Halsey had made his choice. The landing would be made over the heavy surf at Empress Augusta Bay, 215 miles southwest of Rabaul, on 1 November 1943. "Enthusiasm for the plan," he later wrote, "was far from unanimous, even in the South Pacific, but, the decision having been made, all hands were told to 'Get going.' "47

Behind MacArthur's insistence on speeding up the pace of the advance was an apparent concern for the fate of his cherished plan to return to the Philippines. On 17 September, a general staff officer from Washington, Col. William L. Ritchie, had arrived in Brisbane with copies of the deliberations and decisions of the U.S. and British Chiefs at Quebec.48 Colonel Ritchie, Marshall explained to MacArthur, would brief him on the conference, deliver to him the conference documents relating to the war against Japan, and explain fully the Joints Chiefs' plans for operations in the Pacific during the coming year. At the same time, Marshall asked MacArthur to forward to Washington by 1 November his plans for the neutralization of Rabaul, the capture of Kavieng and the Admiralties, and the subsequent advance to the Vogelkop Peninsula -- all approved at the Quebec meeting.49

MacArthur's reaction to the Quebec decisions was not reassuring. The program approved there had set the objective of Southwest Pacific forces at the Vogelkop Peninsula; there was nothing in it about what would come after that. In view of the importance attached to the Central Pacific offensive by the Washington planners, MacArthur apparently felt he could not discount altogether the possibility that he would be pinched out of the war when the New Guinea Campaign was over. The recapture of the Philippines and the final defeat of Japan would then fall to Nimitz' forces and the Navy. This failure to define the role of the Southwest Pacific once the Vogelkop Peninsula had been reached, MacArthur felt, would not only have an adverse effect upon his own staff, but might well lead to a "let down" in the Australian war effort.50

Colonel Ritchie's efforts to allay MacArthur's fears for the future were unavailing and he finally called on General Marshall for help. What was needed, he said, was a statement of long-range objectives for Southwest Pacific forces that MacArthur could use as a basis for planning and show to the Australians. Acting for the Joint Chiefs, Marshall did his best to reassure the Southwest Pacific commander. The Quebec decision, he explained, had not projected operations beyond 1944 because there was not sufficient information to plan past that date and because much would depend on what the Japanese did in the interval. Meantime, said Marshall, the Joint Chiefs intended to apply "unremitting pressure" -- a phrase that was used with increasing frequency -- against Japan from every side, from Asia as well as the Pacific. If an advance toward Japan from the North Pacific seemed profitable, then


the Joint Chiefs might adopt a strategy directed toward that end. Certainly, they would utilize to the full the naval strength of the Central Pacific, a major asset in the war against Japan. It might even prove most advantageous ultimately, Marshall pointed out, to place the main effort in that theater. Only time could tell.

Having thus reminded MacArthur gently that the Joint Chiefs intended to retain their freedom of action, Marshall told him that Mindanao in the southern Philippines would probably be the next objective after Vogelkop. Would he, therefore, draw up plans as quickly as possible for the move into the Philippines? This was good news to MacArthur, but even more encouraging were the two assumptions Marshall gave him to guide him in his planning; first, that the main effort in the drive toward the Philippines would be made from the Southwest Pacific; and, second, that Southwest Pacific forces would be increased at the existing rate.51

MacArthur had long anticipated the drive to the Philippines and had a plan ready in his files. As RENO II, he had submitted it to Marshall in August; all he had to do now was bring it up to date. By 20 October RENO III was ready.52 Like earlier versions of the plan, RENO III called for the successive advance westward along the north coast of New Guinea in a series of amphibious and airborne assaults made under cover of land-based aircraft. Wherever possible, strongpoints would be bypassed and enemy airfields and supply bases neutralized as the Allied bomb-line moved forward.

The schedule of operations outlined in RENO III was similar to that in the previous plans except where changes were required by the program approved at Quebec. Thus, Rabaul was to be neutralized rather than captured during Phase I, and the entire timetable was accelerated to permit the invasion of Mindanao in February 1945. But MacArthur evidently still intended to capture Rabaul at a later date, though he did not specify when or with what forces. Phase I, MacArthur estimated, would start on 1 February 1944 and would carry him through the Bismarck Archipelago and Hansa Bay by the spring of the year. From there he would launch the Phase II attack in the Humboldt Bay area of New Guinea (Hollandia) and in the Arafura Sea in June and August of the year. As before, Wewak was to bypassed. Phase III operations would begin in mid-August with the advance to Geelvink Bay, to be followed in October with the capture of the Vogelkop Peninsula. In December, Southwest Pacific forces would move on to Halmahera, the Celebes, possibly the Palaus (Phase IV), and finally on February 1945, to Mindanao.53

The forces needed for these operations were carefully listed. Phase I -- the capture of Hansa Bay, Kavieng, and the Admiralties -- would require 7 infantry divisions, 2 parachute regiments, and 59 air groups. Ten divisions would be needed for garrison duty. In the next


two phases, MacArthur intended to employ 6 divisions and 1 parachute regiment in the assault, supported by 77 air groups and 13 divisions for garrison. No estimates were made for the final two phases of the advance. They were still more than a year away, and there was time enough, if the plan was adopted, to assemble the forces, shipping, and supplies that would be needed. That these would be considerable was already clear, for in the first three phases alone, even assuming his retention of South Pacific forces, MacArthur would need 6 more divisions, 18 air groups, and a large number of warships ranging in size from escort carriers to landing craft.

Against these requirements the planners in Washington had to place those of other commanders. Europe, of course, had first priority. Would there be enough left over to provide MacArthur with what he needed under the scheme outlined in RENO III and at the same time carry out the program already approved for the Central Pacific? Admiral Nimitz' estimate of assault and garrison forces was large. In or en route to his theater in September 1943 were 5 Army divisions, but only 2 of them would remain there. Army strength in the Central Pacific at this time was about 130,000, with over 100,000 more scheduled for shipment by June 1944. Total Army requirements for operational and garrison forces to that date, Richardson estimated, would come to 285,420 men, an excess of about 50,000 over current and allocated strength.54

It is interesting to note in this connection, in view of the priority of Europe, that the Army had a total of 826,672 men deployed in the Pacific and 92,929 in China-Burma-India as against 1,464,216 in the European, Mediterranean, and North African theaters in December 1943. More significant, perhaps, is the fact that the 13 Army and three and a half Marine divisions in the Pacific equaled the total number in Europe and the Mediterranean at that time. Of the Army divisions, MacArthur had 4 (1st Cavalry, 24th, 32d, and 41st); Halsey, 4 (25th, 37th, 43d, and Americal); and Nimitz 5 (6th, 7th, 27th, 33d, and 40th). The number of air groups in Europe was double the 34 groups available for operations against Japan. But to get an accurate picture of the American effort in the two theaters, it is necessary to add to the Army forces in the Pacific, the Pacific Fleet, comprising the bulk of U.S. naval forces; Marine Corps ground forces, including three divisions; and the air forces, shore and carrier-based, of the Navy and the Marine Corps.55 (Tables 6-8)

By the time MacArthur's RENO III plan reached Washington -- it was brought by his chief of staff, General Sutherland, on 4 November -- the joint planners were in the midst of preparations for the coming conference at Cairo and Tehran. As a matter of fact, MacArthur had been asked on 27 October to submit his summary of the situation and a report on his plans in time for the scheduled conference. These Sutherland brought with


Table 6--Strength, U.S. Forces in the Pacific, 31 December 1943a
(Compared to European and Mediterranean Theaters)
Area Total Army
(Incl AAF)
Marines Navy
Shore-Based Ship-Based
Total 1,791,782 826,672 160,410 248,000 556,700
SWPA 353,945 297,055 22,090 34,000 800
South Pacific 383,874 208,382 71,692 99,000 4,800
Central Pacific 344,414 206,891 49,523 85,000 3,000
North Pacific 147,278 114,344 1,034 30,000 1,900
Pacific Ocean 562,271 ----- 16,071 ----- 546,200

Total 1,849,298 1,464,216 2,482 37,000 345,600
European Theater 866,541 830,423 1,118 21,000 14,000
Mediterranean and North Africa 652,093 633,793 ----- 16,000 2,300
Atlantic Ocean 330,664 ----- 1,364 ----- 329,300

him together with full authority to speak for MacArthur and a request that he be allowed to present his views personally before the Joint and Combined Chiefs of Staff.56

About 8 November, Sutherland met with the joint planners. By this time, the planners had received from the Joint War Plans Committee a revised schedule for Pacific operations in 1944. For the Central Pacific this schedule included operations as far as the Palaus and even the still-tentative Marianas, but it took the forces of the Southwest Pacific only as far as the Vogelkop Peninsula; scheduled for invasion in August. The last two phases of RENO III it omitted entirely. Omitted also were the operations MacArthur had recommended in the Arafura and the Celebes Seas to protect the left flank of his advance along the north coast of New Guinea.57 Since the planners had evidently seen RENO III, these omissions could not have stemmed from ignorance of MacArthur's intentions. Rather, they were based on the considered judgment of the planners that these operations were neither feasible nor desirable, and that the resources required to carry them out could not be available in time.

General Sutherland did his best to change this view. He reviewed the situation in the Pacific in some detail and dwelt on the enemy's deployment during the past months, his capabilities and his intentions. The most profitable target for the Allies and the one that would best accomplish the objectives set at Quebec, he asserted, was the Philippines. Repeating the by now familiar arguments advanced by MacArthur for a return to the islands, Sutherland made a


Table 7--Major U.S. Combat Forces in the Pacific, 31 December 1943a
Ground Forces Aircraft Naval Vessels
Army Army Navy and Marine (Shore-Based) Combatant
Divisions 13 Bomber 745 Bomber 386 Battleship, newb 6
Regiments 5    Heavy 346    Medium & Light 72 Battleship, old 7
Battalions 126    Medium & Light 399    Dive & Torpedo 314 Carrier, Large 7
   Tank 7  
Carrier, Light 14
   AA (Gun) 47 Fighter 973 Patrol Bomber 660 Carrier, Escort 14
   AA (AW) 46 Reconnaissance 118    Heavy 96 Cruiser, Heavy 12
   AA (SL) 26 Troop Carrier 312    Medium 348 Cruiser, Light 13
Marine      Light 216 Destroyer, new 175
Divisions 31/2  
Destroyer, old 13
Regiments 1 Fighter 384 Submarine, new 105
Battalions 182/3 Reconnaissance 36 Submarine, old 18
   Amphtrac 32/3 Photo 36 Miscellaneous
   Defense 15 Troop Carrier 72 Destroyer, escort 57
Total Navy (Carrier-Based) Patrol Craft 85
Divisions 161/2 Torpedo Bomber 519 Minelayer 9
Regiments 6 Scout Bomber 432 Minesweeper 47
Battalions 1442/3 Fighter 884 Transport 54
Miscellaneous 106 Cargo 14
Total LST 125
Bomber 1,131 Fighter 2,241 LCM 99
Patrol Bomber 660 Reconnaissance & Photo 190
Torpedo & Scout Bomber 951 Troop Carrier 384
Miscellaneous 106


Table 8-Major U.S. Combat and Air Forces in Pacific and European Areas, 31 December 1943a
Forces Pacific Areas European Areas
Total SWPA South
Navy in
Total European Med
Navy in
Ground Units:                    
   Divisions, total 16+ 6+ xxx  17  11  xxx 
      Army 13  xxx  17  11  xxx 
      Marine 3+ 1+ xxx  xxx 
xxx  xxx 
      Army xxx  xxx 
      Marine xxx  xxx 
144+ 33  43+ 42+ 26  xxx  113  37  67  xxx 
      Army 126  31  34  35  26  xxx  113  37  76  xxx 
      Marine 18+ 9+ 7+ xxx  xxx 
Shore-Based Aircraft:                    
   Bombers, total 1,183  429  381  199  24  150  2,144b 1,216  928  ----- 
      Heavy, Army 346  144  108  70  24  1,460  988  472  ----- 
      Medium &
      Light, Army
423  285  57  57  24  684  228  456  ----- 
      Dive & Torpedo,
      Navy & Marine
414  216  72  126  -----  ----- 
   Fighters, total 1,537  474  390  381  100  192  2,623  1,425  1,198  ----- 
      Day & Bomber 1,465  450  366  369  100  180  2,575  1,425  1,150  ----- 
         Army 925  450  150  225  100  2,575  1,425  1,150  ----- 
         Navy &
540  216  144  180  -----  ----- 
      Night 72  24  24  12  12  48  48  ----- 
         Army  48  24  12  12  48  48  ----- 
         Navy &
24  12  12  -----  ----- 
   Army, total
164  88  28  12  36  204  120  84  ----- 
   Troop Carrier,
384  234  87  38  13  12  494  130  364  ----- 
      Army 312  324  39  26  13  494  130  364  ----- 
      Navy & Marine 72  48  12  12  -----  ----- 
   Patrol Bomber,
660  72  240  156  96  96  -----  ----- 
      Navy & Marine
96  24  36  36  -----  ----- 
      Navy & Marine
348  60  120  60  48  60  -----  ----- 
      Navy & Marine
216  12  96  60  48  -----  ----- 


strong plea for the invasion of Mindanao. Its capture, he pointed out, might force the Japanese into a decisive fleet engagement, would place the Allies in a favorable position to strike a decisive blow at Japanese shipping, and permit them to move their land-based air strength in position to apply "maximum pressure" against the Japanese. "We thereby attack the enemy," he concluded, "in each of his four major points of weakness: oil, naval and merchant shipping, and the air."58

The best way to reach the Philippines was by way of the Southwest Pacific Area. No other route, said Sutherland, offered the same advantages. Systematically he considered the approaches through Southeast Asia and across the Pacific. The first, which no one seriously favored, he considered undesirable both tactically and logistically. The Central Pacific route was more difficult to discount, but it, too, Sutherland found undesirable as "a succession of independent seaborne attacks, supported by carrier-based aviation, against islands that are thoroughly organized for defense and supported by land-based aviation as well as by the carrier-based air of the Japanese Fleet." Such attacks, he declared, were not only "the most hazardous" of military operations but also of little value in maintaining "unrelenting pressure" against the Japanese. Each operation would be independent, would contribute little to the next, and would not materially weaken the enemy whose ability to make war was based on the China-Philippines-Borneo-Netherlands Indies littoral. "All the rest of her holdings are merely outposts," and their capture would not, he believed, reduce Japan's capacity to fight.

Sutherland admitted that the Central Pacific advance would exploit America's growing naval power. But he qualified this endorsement by pointing out that such an advance would fail to utilize the equally important strength of land-based aircraft or employ decisively and in effective combination Allied land, sea, and air power. In short, the route across the Pacific, in Sutherland's view, would involve the Allies in a frontal assault and a war of attrition without promise of great strategic results.

The use of all avenues of approach to Japan's inner citadel in the Philippines was obviously the most desirable course. Were the forces for such a course available, then it should by all means be adopted, said Sutherland -- provided, of course, that the offensive along one axis of advance did not require a lessened effort in the other. But until Germany was defeated, there was little likelihood that the Pacific commanders would have the forces needed for two or more simultaneous and equally powerful drives to the Philippines. "To attempt a major effort along each axis," Sutherland declared, "would result in weakness everywhere in violation of cardinal principles of war, and ... in failure to reach the vital strategic objective at the earliest possible date, thus prolonging the war." For the present, he argued, a single strong attack along one axis, supported by forces in the other areas, was the only possible course. The Southwest Pacific was the route to follow; RENO III, the


plan. All the Joint Chiefs had to do, concluded Sutherland, was approve the plan and provide the forces.59

The joint planners were apparently not convinced by Sutherland's arguments that all available resources be concentrated in the Southwest Pacific for the drive on the Philippines. Instead, they accepted the schedule of their planning committee and recommended to the Joint Chiefs a continuation of the existing strategy: concurrent and mutually supporting operations along both axes of advance, with the transfer of forces from one area to the other when required. MacArthur's plan for operations in the Netherlands Indies they rejected, as they did his hope of ultimately capturing Rabaul.60 And faced by the inevitable question of deciding which of the two theaters should have the priority in a conflict, the planners fell back on the formula that in such an event "due weight should be accorded to the fact that operations in the Central Pacific promise a more rapid advance toward Japan."61 The final decision on the drive to the Philippines as well as on the objectives for 1944 was still to be made. The coming conference at Cairo would provide the answer.


Table of Contents ** Previous Chapter (25) ** Next Chapter (27)


1. CCS 239/2, 26 Aug 43, sub: Implementation of . . . Specific Opns for Conduct of War, 1943-1944.

2. Rad, MacArthur to Somervell, 14 Aug 43, CM-IN 10721.

3. Rads, Hull to Handy and Somervell, 15 Aug 43, CM-OUT 6054; Somervell to MacArthur, 18 Aug 43, CM-IN 13773; MacArthur to Marshall, 19 Aug 43, CM-IN 14061; Marshall to MacArthur, 24 Aug 43, CM-OUT 18280. For a full discussion of this problem, see Richard M. Leighton and Robert W. Coakley, Global Logistics and Strategy: 1943-1945, MS, ch. XX, "Shipping in the Pacific War." This is a forthcoming volumes in the series UNITED STATES ARMY IN WORLD WAR II.

4. See above, ch. XXII.

5. For an account of the occupation and development of these islands see Crowl and Love, Seizure of the Gilberts and Marshalls, 52-56. Admiral Spruance later recalled that when the directive for the Gilberts and Marshalls was received at Pearl Harbor-- he was then Nimitz' chief of staff--no one really knew how difficult the capture of a fortified atoll would e or what the Japanese had in the islands. At a conference in Nimitz' office, Spruance writes, "I strongly urged the necessity of an advance from our Hawaii-South Pacific line of communications through the Ellice and Gilbert Islands in order to establish air bases (and where possible bases for ships) as a necessary preliminary to the conquest of the Marshalls. Capt. Forrest Sherman, then Chief of Staff to COMAIRPAC, supported me as to the necessity for preliminary reconnaissance, except that he preferred Wake rather than positions to the southward." Ltr, Spruance to Hoover, 17 Jul 59, OCMH.

6. Crowl and Love, Seizure of the Gilberts and Marshalls, p. 26.

7. Rad, Nimitz to King, No. 260439, 26 Sep 43, CM-IN 20329.

8. Ltr, Spruance to Hoover, 17 Jul 59, OCMH.

9. Memo, Col Frank N. Roberts for Handy, 27 Sep 43, sub: Substitution of Makin for Nauru . . ., OPD Exec Files (2, item 1b).

10. Memo, Marshall for King, 27 Sep 43, sub: Substitution of Makin for Nauru, OPD Exec Files (item 1b); Rad, King to Nimitz, 271805, 27 Sep 43, CM-IN 19285; CINCPAC-CINCPOA Opns Plan 13-43, 5 Oct 43. The original target date was 19 November.

11. Ltr, Nimitz to King, ser. 00151, 20 Aug 43, sub: Seizure of Marshalls, OPD Exec Files.

12. Mins, JPS Mtg, 27 Aug 43, JPS 262, 28 Aug 43, sub: Seizure of Marshalls; JCS 461, 30 Aug 43, same sub. See also CCS 319/5, 24 Aug 43, sub: Final Rpt to President and Prime Minister, QUADRANT; and Crowl and Love, Seizure of the Gilberts and Marshalls, pp. 167-69.

13. Leighton and Coakley, Global Logistics and Strategy: 1943-1945, MS ch. XX "Shipping in the Pacific War," p. 15; Memo, Deputy Chief, Planning Div OCT, for Somervell, 31 Aug 43, sub: Shipping Seizure of Marshalls, Hq ASF Folder Trans SOS 1943.

14. Rad, JCS to Nimitz, 2 Sep 43, CM-IN 1123; JCS 461, 30 Aug 43, sub: Seizure of Marshalls, Mins, JCS Mtg, 31 Aug 43.

15. Memo by CofS, USA, 6 Sep 43, sub: Pacific Opns and Availability of Shipping. This memo was prepared by General Somervell. JCS 471; Mins, JCS Mtg, 7 Sep 43.

16. JCS 471/1,23 Sep 43, sub: Pacific Opns and Availability of Shipping; Mins, JCS Mtg, 28 Sep 43. For a further discussion of this problem, see Leighton and Coakley, Global Logistics and Strategy: 1943-1945, MS ch. XX, "Shipping in the Pacific War."

17. Rads, Ritchie to Handy, 27 S43, CM-IN 18992; Marshall to MacArthur, 8 Oct 43, CM-OUT 3401.

18. Ltrs, Handy to Richardson, 28 Oct 43, sub: Central Pacific Opns and Deploy, OPD 381, case 257; Handy to Harmon, 8 Nov 43, no sub, OPD 381, case 261.

19. Ltr, Nimitz to King, ser 00247, 25 Oct 43; Crowl and Love, Seizure of the Gilberts and Marshalls, p. 168; Robert D. Heinl, Jr., and John A. Crown, The Marshalls: Increasing the Tempo (Washington: U.S. Marine Corps Historical Branch, 1954), pp. 9-11.

20. 205/5, 30 Oct 43, sub: Opns in Central Pacific; Mins, JPS Mtg, same date; JCS 559, 1 November 43, sub: Opns in Central Pacific.

21. Mins, JCS Mtg, 2 Nov 43.

22. JCS to Nimitz, 4 Nov 43; King to Nimitz, ser. 002415, 4 Nov 43, sub: Delay in FLINTLOCK, cited in Hayes, The War Against Japan, II, 86.

23. See above, ch. XXI.

24. Memo, King for JCS, 21 Sep 42, sub: Campaign Against Japan via the Northern Route, ABC 381 Japan (5-31-42), sec. 1.

25. JPS 67/1, 30 Nov 42, sub: Campaign Against Japan via the Northern Route, summarized i OPD Memo for Handy, 1 Dec 42, sub: Brief on JPS 67/1, ABC 381 Japan (5-31-42), sec. 1.

26. Mins, JCS Mtg, 30 Dec 42 and 5 Jan 43; OPD Brief, Notes on JPS Mtg, 2 Dec 42, sub: Campaign Against Japan via the Northern Route, JPS 67/1, ABC 381 Japan (5-31-42), sec. 1; JCS 182, 1 Jan 43., same sub.

27. JCS 180, 27 Dec 42, sub: Bradley Missions, ABC 334.8; Ltr, Bradley to Marshall, 14 Dec 42, sub: Rpt of Bradley Mission to Russia, OPD Bradley Folder.

28. Memo, Leahy for President, 30 Dec 42, sub: Survey of Air Force Facilities in Far East, filed with JCS 180 in ABC 334.8 Bradley Mission.

29. Rads, Stalin to Roosevelt, 13 Jan 43; Roosevelt to Stalin, 8 Jan 43; Stalin to Roosevelt, 5 Jan 43, all filed with JCS 180.

30. JWPC 9/1, 5 May 43, sub: Opns in Pacific and Far East in 1943-44.

31. Ltr, DeWitt to Marshall, 2 Aug 43, with attached plan for offensive operations in the Northwest Pacific, dated 30 Jul 43, CCS 381 NWPac (7-30-43).

32. Ltr, Nimitz to King, 18 Aug 43; Memo, King for Marshall, 30 Aug 43, both in WDCSA 381, sec. 2. For Army planners' view see OPD 370.5, case 264, and OPD 381, case 206.

33. Mins, JCS Mtg, 7 Sep 43.

34. Mins, JPS Mtgs, 15 and 20 Sep 43.

35. JCS 474-1, 21 Sep 43, sub: Garrisons in Alaska.

36. Ibid.

37. Categories of Defense are defined in Joint Action of the Army and the Navy (1935) as the degree of preparation required to defend specific areas under specified circumstances. There are six such categories designated alphabetically A through F. Continental Alaska, which had been in Category B, defined as an area in which minor attacks were possible, the JSSC placed in Category A--attack unlikely but provided with nominal defense for "political reasons." Other portions of the Alaska Theater were to be similarly downgraded for defense purposes. Adak from D (major attack possible)C (minor attack probable) and Unalaska from D to B.

38. JCS 474/2, 21 Sep 43, sub: Garrisons in Alaska; JCS 474/3, 25 Sep 43, same sub.

39. Mins, JCS Mtgs, 28 Sep and 5 Oct 43; JCS 474/5, 5 Oct 43, sub: Change in Category of Defense in Hawaiian and Aleutian Is.

40. Memo, King for Marshall, 5 Nov 43; Rad, Marshall to Buckner, 8 Nov 43, both in WDCSA 381 (1942-43).

41. JPS 288, 4 Oct 43, sub: Plans for Defeat of Japan Within Twelve Months After Defeat of Germany; JPS 320, 9 Nov 43, sub: Early Sustained Bombing of Japan.

42. GHQ SWPA Operating Instrs 13 Jun 43. For a comprehensive account of the plans and operations under CARTWHEEL, see Miller, CARTWHEEL, chs. XI and XII.

43. Ltr, Halsey to MacArthur, 26 Jul 43, sub: Bougainville Opn; Miller, CARTWHEEL, p. 226.

44. Ltr, Halsey to MacArthur, 9 Sep 43, sub: ELKTON III-Bougainville Objectives; Miller, CARTWHEEL, p. 227.

45. Halsey, Narrative Account of the South Pacific Campaign, p. 8; Harmon, the Army in the South Pacific, p; Ltr, MacArthur to Halsey, 11 Sep 43, no sub; Notes for Memo on Conf Between Representatives of South and Southwest Pacific; Miller, CARTWHEEL, p. 227-28.

46. JPS 275, 18 Sep 43, sub: Opns in the South-Southwest Pacific Area; JPS 725/1, 221 Sep 43, same sub.

47. Halsey, Narrative Account of the South Pacific Campaign, p. 8; Rads, Halsey to MacArthur, 1 Oct 43, MacArthur to Halsey, same date; Miller, CARTWHEEL, p. 229.

48. Rad, Ritchie to Handy, 18 Sep 43, CM-IN 13521.

49. Rad, Marshall to MacArthur, 18 Sep 43, CM-OUT 9252.

50. Rad, Ritchie to Marshall, 28 Sep 43, CM-IN 19656.

51. Rad, Marshall (for JCS) to MacArthur, 2 Oct 43, CM-OUT 630. Drafts of the message and concurrence by the Navy are filed in OPD 381, case 192.

52. RENO III, 20 Oct 43, sub: Outline Plans for Opns of SWPA to Re-Occupy Southern Philippines, BC 384 Pacific, sec. 8-A.

53. Cf. RENO I and RENO II, chs. XXII and XXV above.

54. Ltr, Nimitz to JCS, 30 Sep 43, sub: Garrison Rqmts in Central Pacific Area; USAFMIDPAC Hist, pt. I, vol. I, p. 115.

55. Marshall to MacArthur, 4 Nov 43, CM-OUT 1289; Matloff, Strategic Planning for Coalition Warfare, 1943-1944, Table 3, presents a comparison of Army forces deployed overseas on 31 December 1942 with those deployed on 31 December 1943 in all theaters.

56. Rad, MacArthur to Marshall, 31 Oct 43, CM-IN 18860; Marshall to MacArthur, 27 Oct 43, 12164.

57. JWPC 115/1, Rpt by JWPC, 7 Nov 43, sub: Specific Opns for Defeat of Japan, 1944.

58. General MacArthur's Estimate of Pacific Sit and Concept of Over-all Plans for Defeat of Japan, no date, filed in folder labeled Notes on Particular Points that may be discussed in SW, S, and CP Areas. OPD Exec Files.

59. General Sutherland in commenting on the present volume in manuscript form, stated that a more correct reflection of his position at the time would be "to combine the effect of converging forces from the Southwest Pacific, South Pacific, and Central Pacific along an axis to the Philippines." Sutherland Comments, Jul 59, OCMH.

60. Shortly after the Cairo Conference, General Sutherland stated to the Joint Chiefs, according to the memory of Admiral Bieri who was present, that MacArthur believed the decision to bypass Rabaul "would go n history as one of time's greatest military mistakes." Ltr, Bieri to Hoover, 17 Jul 59, OCMH.

61. JCS 581, 9 Nov 43, sub: Specific Opns for Defeat of Japan, 1944; Memo, Col George A. Lincoln for Chief, Strategy Sec, OPD, 8 Nov 43, sub: RENO III, ABC 381 Strategy Sec (7 Jan 43).

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