By Trevor Nevitt Dupuy

Concentrates on a particular point of the warfare and is illustrated with charts, maps and pictures.

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Extra resources for The Air War in the West. Sept. 1939-May 1941 (The Military History of World War II vol.6)

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Machine guns opened up as did the 60mm and 81mm mortars. The 75mm howitzers of the 3/11th Marines began firing illumination. ) The drifting parachute-suspended flares cast a maze of crisscrossing tree shadows. Each flare cast its own set of shadows, resulting in confusing shadows moving in opposing directions and making it difficult to detect movement on the ground. Machine guns hammered out streams of red tracers ricocheting off the river’s surface and trees. US machine guns and AT guns were sited to fire down the length of the sandbar and sandspit to enfilade the swarming enemy.

Rear Admiral Tanaka somberly observed, “This tragedy should have taught the hopelessness of ‘bamboo spear’ tactics” (quoted in Hough, Ludwig, & Shaw 1958: 291). The belief that Japanese spirit would overcome firepower and material superiority was seriously challenged. com The Henderson Field Attack September 12–14, 1942 BACKGROUND TO BATTLE Before the battle of the Tenaru was over, the determined Japanese command implemented plans to commit more troops. They realized the partly finished airfield was the Americans’ focus.

The idea was to make the American command uncertain which of the three attacks was the main one, delay or confuse committing reserves, and “dilute” the artillery support rather than permitting it all to be concentrated on the main attack. After the main attack’s success, the wing units would continue exerting pressure to hold the defenders in place rather than allowing them to turn and face the main attack. The Right Wing Unit was the Kuma Battalion reinforced by the survivors of the battle of the Tenaru.

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