Battles of World War II
The Pacific Front
The Bataan Death March
U.S. and Filipino troops fought against the Japanese army on the Bataan peninsula, but after being cornered and suffering many losses and injuries, they surrendered. Soon after, the soldiers were forced to to march miles to imprisonment camps. During the journey, the Japanese inflicted harsh punishments on the American and Filipino troops, and killed about ten thousand people.
The Two-Pronged Attack Strategy and Island Hopping
The main strategy used in the war on the pacific front against the Japanese was the two-pronged attack. General Douglas MacArthur and Chester Nimitz came up with this plan in order to corner the Japanese troops and get close enough to Japan to launch a mainland invasion. MacArthur pushed from the North coast of Papua New Guinea, while Nimitz crossed through the central pacific by "hopping" from island to island, securing each from the Japanese as he went along.
The Battle of Midway
Only six months after the attack on Pearl Harbor, Japan planned an ambush on Midway in order to draw out the American fleet. However, the U.S. had cracked the Japanese fleet codes, which allowed them to plan a counterattack. By the end of the battle, Japan suffered a huge loss to their naval and air power, and the United States victory allowed the allied forces to go on the offensive against the Japanese.
The Battle of Okinawa was the bloodiest battle of the war in the Pacific, with tens of thousands of casualties on each side. The american forces had an especially hard time during the three month long fight because of Japanese defense lines, and kamikaze pilots, but eventually succeeded in occupying the island.
World War II in HD: Okinawa | History
The European Front
The allies worked on driving Germany out of the places it occupied in North Africa and the Mediterranean. They used the strategy of "closing the ring", where the allied powers closed in on Hitler from three sides. U.S. forces, lead by general Dwight D. Eisenhower, pushed the Germans out of North Africa, while Britain and America worked together to liberate France in the east, and the Soviet Union closed in from the west.
The Invasion of Normandy
On June 6th, 1994, Operation Overlord, planned with the help of the strategic military leader, George Marshall, took place on the shores of Normandy in France. The plan, under command of General Omar Bradley, was to corner Germany to end the war, while freeing France and all other territories occupied by Germany. Within three months of the operation, the allied forces had broken through past the German border and advanced towards Berlin.
The Navajo Code Talkers
During the war, the U.S. military needed a code that would be difficult to break, so they used the Native American Navajos to communicate messages back and forth, so the enemy couldn't understand their plans. Words in the Navajo language were used to replace military terms, since those words didn't exist normally.