Guadalcanal Battle Analysis

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It is difficult to ascertain when the pivotal moment of The Pacific Theater happened; several battles could lay claim for that designation for the American forces. While cases can be made for each of these battles (perhaps Pearl Harbor, Okinawa, Iwo Jima, or even Leyte), this analysis will only focus on two: the naval conflict at Midway and the battle for Guadalcanal. Midway has been widely recognized as the first major American victory in the Pacific. The battle signaled a move from defense to offense, enabling American forces (Army, Navy, and Marine Corps) to start conducting operations in other areas of the theater. Meanwhile, the battle of Guadalcanal displayed the might of American technology, logistics, doctrine, and character in the…show more content…
The use of carriers as a main tool in battle was uncommon up until this conflict. Also, efficient use of code-breaking gave the field merit in further operations. Additionally, the battle knocked out a significant and crucial portion of Admiral Yamamoto's fleet. The loss of his carriers will prove fatal, as they become more prominent in the years to come. Psychologically, the Japanese have been dealt perhaps a larger blow. This was the first major loss for the mighty Japanese fleet. Admiral Yamamoto tried to lessen the degree of defeat several times shortly after the battle. On one such occasion, the 8th of June, he attempted to bait the Americans into another engagement, in a pitiful attempt to save face in the devastating loss two days prior (Morison 152). In fact, this loss was so devastating it was kept secret by high ranking Japanese officials for remainder of the war. Additionally, the Japanese soon after canceled their initiatives to invade New Caledonia, Fiji, and Samoa, instead strengthening their already held lands (Miller Jr 5-8). What made Midway so pivotal was its introduction to advanced naval tactics, its blow to Japanese morale, its destruction of Japanese material, and its display of American power. However, while the battle ultimately sent the Japanese into retreat, it was not until months later when the Americans officially were on the

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