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Illustrated with 27 maps and 33 Illustrations
THE INVASION OF THE SOUTHERN MARIANAS in June and July of 1944 was part of a coordinated effort by U. S. forces to gain bases within striking distance by air of the Philippines and the Japanese home islands. The enemy position in the Pacific was weakening under strong Allied offensives, which moved along two lines converging on the Japanese inner zone. From Australia the Allied offensive had developed on an axis northwest along New Guinea and beyond the Bismarck Sea, and from Hawaii it had moved to the west through the Marshall Islands. The advance along both lines had depended upon the conquest of enemy islands selected to form a system of supporting garrisons from which air and sea power could neutralize the remaining enemy bases in the area.
The seizure of Guam in July-August 1944 added another base to our growing chain of possessions encircling the Japanese homeland. Marine troops made the initial landings on Guam and were aided in capturing the island by army units, comprised chiefly of the 77th Infantry Division. Guam tells the Army’s part of the campaign.