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The War In the Pacific

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Kevin Chen

on 7 May 2014

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Transcript of The War In the Pacific

1941
1942
1945
1931
1944
The War In the Pacific
Japanese Aggression
World War II had not begun when the Japanese invaded
1941
January 10, Imperial Japanese forces began landing in northern areas of the Dutch East Indies
Mid-January, Japanese forces invaded Burma
Early February, British forces surrendered Singapore to the Japanese
January 22, Dutch East Indies was conquered by the Japanese
Local allied fleet was virtually wiped out during Battle of the Java Sea on February 27
April 8 American Army in Philippines surrendered to Japanese troops at Bataan
Japanese built a strategic defense in depth, based on numerous fortified belts
During 2nd week of March, Japan launched campaigns against Eastern India and Southern China
By April, Japanese forces slowly withdrew. British forces counterattacked and killed/captured two thirds of the Japanese troops
In June, American forces came ashore on Saipan in the Marianas Island
January 9- American forces landed on main Philippine island of Luzon
February 19- US Marines entered battle on island of Iwo Jima. It was secured by the United States
The Atomic Bombs
Introduction
What do we Canadians think of when we hear "World War 2"? Mostly likely, thoughts of Germany, and battles in Europe come to mind. But this was called a World War for a reason. An equally horrendous war was fought in the East.

The War in the Pacific spanned vast areas and many countries participated in the bloodshed. The Japanese, the Americans, the British, the French, the Dutch, and even Canadians took part in this fight.

In this presentation, we will outline the major battles, the importance to the overall war, the role of Canadians in this war, and the outcome of the battles.
April 13, 1941
Japan and the Soviet Union signed the Soviet-Japanese Neutrality Pact (A non-aggression pact)
July 1941, Japanese soldiers invaded French Indo-China with the aim of taking the Dutch East Indies
France and the Netherlands had been occupied by Germans in 1940, therefore they could not defend their colonies.
As a result, the United States, British, and Dutch governments cut all trading links with Japan
December 8 1941
Attack on Pearl Harbor
Battle of Hong Kong
Hong Kong was seen as a vulnerable outpost. Thus, reinforcements were sent as a deterrent to hostile action by Japan.
The Crown Colony of Hong Kong at the time consist of Hong Kong Island, and adjacent mainland areas of Kowloon and New Territories
The Plan
When the Japanese forces attacked, soldiers at Hong Kong were ready. 3 Battalions would man a 10-mile line called the Gin Drinker's line. This position would protect Kowloon, the harbor, and the Northern Part of Hong Kong Island from artillery fire from the land
If the Japanese mounted a major offensive, the mainland positions would provide time to complete demolitions, and clear vital supplies. Remaining forces were to be concentrated on the island and prepare to defend against attacks from the sea. (www.veterans.gc.ca)
Invasion
December 8, Japanese aircraft reached the Kai Tak Airport
All Royal Air Force aircraft were either destroyed or damaged
Japanese attacks made the Gin Drinker's line unsustainable
Defending forces faced heavy artillery fire, mounted destructive air raids, and systematically shelled pillboxes along the north shore
December 13, Japanese's demand for the surrender of Hong Kong was rejected
December 17, Japan's second demand for surrender was refused
December 18, Japanese forces began to invade the island
December 25, the Allied forces surrendered
Canadian Contributions
Canada provided 2 battalions to defend Hong Kong
The Royal Rifles of Canada
The Winnipeg Grenadiers
Total of 1095 troops
These Canadian units had not receives training as front-line troops
Became the first Canadian unit to fight in WW2
Grenadiers inflicted severe casualties on the enemy and delayed the Japanese advance for 3 days
Canadians held out until December 22, when ammunition, food, and water were exhausted
Fighting in Hong Kong resulted in the deaths of 290 Canadians and 493 others were wounded
550 of the 1975 men that set sail from Vancouver to Hong Kong never returned
Philippines
Japanese bomber fleet in Formosa was attacked
This fleet that was headed towards the Philippine islands was delayed due to weather (allowed 8 hour time gap)
American General Douglas MacArthur wasted this golden opportunity to strengthen defenses
Manila was abandoned. U.S. forces had to retreat to the Bataan Peninsula
Japanese airplanes sank the battleship the Prince of Wales and battle cruiser Repulse in Singapore
May 4-8
Japanese wanted to attack the crucial Australian position at Port Moresby.
To do this, they attacked the island of Tulagi in the British Solomons.
This operation spiraled into a major naval-air battle in the Coral Sea as American aircraft carriers intervened
End result: Tactically a Japanese Victory, but Japan's Navy's modern fleet carriers were damaged
Led to Japan canceling the Port Moresby invasion
Battle of Coral Sea
The Battle of Midway
(Reynoldson, 21)
Malaya
December 8, Japanese troops invaded British Colony of Malaya
Most of Britain's forces were fighting in Europe
British troops were forced to retreat through the jungle towards Singapore
Japanese soldiers were better jungle fighters
June 4-7 1942
US fleet was located at the Midway Islands. There was a harbor and an airfield
Japanese Commander in chief Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto devised a complicated plan
Part of the Japanese navy would invade the Aleutian islands far to the north. When the US rushed north, another Japanese force would attack Midway. When the US Fleet rushed back to Midway, the Japanese fleet would blast it from the water (Reynoldson, 22)
US could read Japanese codes. Thus they knew the enemy's plans.
The United States won the battle
This was one of the most important battles of the Pacific. It was a key turning point for the Allies
1943
Allies decided to follow a 2 pronged advance. One would "leap frog" through the Solomon Islands and New Guinea, cutting off Japanese positions and using air-sea superiority to prevent rescue of the isolated troops
Other advance would push through central Pacific with both land and sea invasions
By middle of 1943, New Guinea and Bougainville fell to the Allies
November, Allies captured the "unbeatable stronghold" on the Tarawa Atoll in the Gilbert Islands
Saipan
June 19-20
The Battle of the Philippine Sea is also referred to as the "Marianas Turkey Shoot" by Americans
This was due to the "relative little cost" that it took to shoot down hundreds of Japanese aircraft
Securing the area was important to the US: its airfields would put the Ar Air Force's B-29 Bombers within striking distance of the main Japanese islands
For Japan, keeping Saipan was crucial in stopping Americans in advancing
Large amounts of civilian suicides
Manchuria
Soon after, airfield on Peleliu on the Palau Island was soon captured.
Early October - American carrier fleet attacked Formosa.
October 20, Americans landed on Leyte Island, Philippines
Battle of Leyte Gulf (October 23-26)
With little resistance, Japan invaded and conquered Manchuria in 1931
Japan then established it as a puppet regime and renamed it Manchukuo
This puppet regime had to carry on a protracted pacification campaign against the Anti-Japanese Volunteer Armies in Manchuria
Japanese, Koreans, and Taiwanese were banned from immigration to North America and Australia
Manchukuo opened the immigration of Asians, and the Japanese population subsequently grew to 850,000
Second Sino-Japanese War
Japan invaded China in 1937, creating what was essentially a three-way war between Japan, Mao Zedong's communists, and Chiang Kai-shek's nationalists
On July 7, 1937, Chinese and Japanese troops exchanged fire at Luguo Bridge - a crucial access route to Beijing
Japanese advance and conquered Beijing and Tianjin
The Battle of Shanghai was sparked when the chinese attacked the Japanese Marines.
After months of fighting, the Japan conquered Shanghai
The Japanese advance towards Nanjing (Nanking) by the end of 1937

Okinawa
April -June 1945
After 82 days, US forces destroyed Japanese resistance in Okinawa
More than 70 000 Japanese soldiers and their Okinawan conscripts died trying to defend the land
Once captured, Okinawa would serve as a staging area for an invasion of the main islands
Bloodbath at Okinawa was a major factor in President Harry Truman's decision making with regards to invading the Japanese home islands, as well as the decision to drop the atomic bombs
Iwo Jima
February , American forces invaded island of Iwo Jima
Wanted to secure airstrips for Amean B-29 flyers
Battle ended on March 26
B-29 crew used Iwo Jima as a safe haven during their 3000 mile bombing runs to Japan
At the same time the Soviet Union opened a massive offensive against the Japanese forces in Manchuria. After these attacks, Japan was in a dire situation.
Nanjing Massacre
Also known has the "Rape of Nanjing"
Approximately 300 000 were mass murdered and tortured
Tens of thousands of women were raped and killed immediately after
Some Japanese deny that the massacre occurred
A massacre contest was held
A race for one Japanese to murder 100 people in one day
Clash Between Japanese and Americans
The Americans feared an attack from Japan would arrive
After conquering French Indo-China, America threatens the Japanese by freezing their financial assets and imposing an oil embargo
Japan was faced with two choices: stop territorial expansion no longer giving to the demands of the allies, or go to war with America
The Japanese knew they could not battle America in a long naval war due to lack of economic and military might
The decision was made to administrate a knockout blow by destroying the pacific fleet
The Japanese planned a route avoiding lanes and land mass, arriving unseen 275 miles from the island
Preparations for the Attack
Aircraft carriers are contain the Mitsubishi Zero
Over 10 years of experience of operating
Many tests runs
7:55 AM, the first wave of bombers swoop from the sky
Of the eight battleships at anchor, 4 ships sank
Arizona
Oklahoma
West Virginia
California
The Japanese lose 64 men to 3649 Americans, a human damage ratio of 57 to 1
Flaws in the attack:
Japanese fail to destroy the fuel supply
By destroying the fuel supply, it would leave the American carrier ships stranded
Japanese fail to destroy the American aircraft carriers
They were absent from Pearl Harbor
Canadian Contributions
A total of 1050 Canadians participated in the Battle of Hong Kong
554 Canadians were killed in this battle
Involved in the war in the Pacific mainly through involvement in the RCAF
Canadian forces worked with US forces in clearing Japanese troops from the Aleutian islands off Alaska
Canadian Cruiser HMS (Her Majesty's Ship) Uganda participated in Pacific naval operations
2 Royal Canadian Air Force transport squadrons flew supplies in India and Burma
Canadian communications specialists served in Australia
Approximately 40 canadians served in Force 136, a British intelligence organization that operated behind Japanese lines
Veterans Guard of Canada was employed in 1944 and 1945 as "mule skinners". They escorted shiploads of mules from the US to India
August 6, 1945
US Air Force dropped an atomic bomb (Little Boy) on the japanese city of Hiroshima
August 9, 1945
US Air Force dropped an atomic bomb (Fat man) on the Japanese city of Nagasaki
Japan agreed to surrender August 14, 1945. After that, American forces occupied Japan.
Japan formally surrendered to the US, Great Britain, and Soviet Union on September 2 1945.
Japan signed the Instrument of Surrender
World War 2 officially ended

Importance of the War in the Pacific to the Overall war
Full transcript