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The Pacific War

Overview of the war in the Pacific

Mike Fugler

on 16 July 2015

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Transcript of The Pacific War

The Pacific War
War between Japan & its enemies fought from 1931-1945 in the Pacific Ocean, its islands, and East Asia.
The Japanese Empire
Reasons for Japanese Aggression:
Capture resource rich colonies= better economy
Unite Asia under rule of Japanese Emperor.
Attack historic enemy, China, while it was weakened by civil war.
Road to War
Invade Manchuria
Sign an alliance with Fascist Germany and Italy

Attack mainland China, capture Shanghai, Nanking, and southern Shanxi province
Capture French Indochina (Vietnam)
Bushido Code
Samurai code of ethics
"Do not live in shame as a prisoner. Die, and leave no ignominious crime behind you."
Means warriors should fight to death, never surrender
Japanese aircraft loaded with explosives and making a deliberate suicidal crash on an enemy target.
5000 of these attacks used by Japanese during WW2
Attack on Pearl Harbour
December 7 1941
USA not in war
Japan sneak attacks USA naval base to destroy Pacific fleet so it can rule unchallenged
Sink 8 battleships and 10 other ships, destroy over 250 planes, kill over 2000 soldiers and civilians
Pacific Rivals
Results of Pearl Harbor:
US declares war on Japan
Germany declares war on USA-
US part of war in Europe
While US rebuilds, Japan conquers much of the Pacific
Canada and
the invasion
of Hong Kong
Canada sent 2000 troops to defend British colony of Hong Kong
December 18-25, 1941- Japan attacks and captures Hong Kong
Almost all Canadian soldiers killed or captured and spend the rest of war in a Japanese POW camp
The Japanese Military
& Tactics
Death before surrender
Battle of Saipan
-29 000 of 31 000 Japanese soldiers killed
Battle of Iwo Jima
-21 844 of 22 060 Japanese soldiers killed
Treatment of conquered
peoples and POWs
Japanese military was accused of numerous war crimes for way it conducted war:
Rape of Nanking: hundreds of thousands of civilians were murdered and 20,000–80,000 women in China's capital were raped by soldiers in 1937
Japan had a reputation for treating prisoners of war harshly, and many POWs died in the camps:
Bataan Death March: 5000-11 000 POWs die when forced to march 60 miles with no food or water
Allied Counter Offensive
Island hopping:
Allied plan to defeat Japan
leapfrog from one island to the next
Eventually close enough to Japan to bomb it in to surrendering or invade it
US had colonies in the Pacific
that made it a threat to Japan's desired dominance of the region (Hawaii, Guam, the Philippines, Samoa).
Full transcript