Then, even at the lowest of the war tide, the decision was made, and correctly: first fight for time, especially in the Pacific—and then assemble the might to conquer first Italy and Germany, and then inevitably Japan must succumb. It was a difficult decision. Distressful though it was, it was realized immediately that with our Pacific Fleet shattered, and no western Pacific bases left to operate from, we could give no help either to our Army in the Philippines or our Allies in Singapore—we could not even evacuate them.
But our little Asiatic Fleet fell back, sacrificing themselves in innumerable battles against overwhelming enemy forces until only the remnants staggered into Australian ports. But they had gained time. And instead of challenging our enfeebled forces in American waters and attacking Hawaii, Alaska, and Panama, or cutting our supply lines in those waters, the Japanese Navy wasted time in serving as a mere adjunct to the Army in its land conquest.
But our shipyards, our ordnance plants, our scientists were working. Radar was perfected, new sonic devices invented, planes and warships built by the thousands, escort carriers and landing craft constructed, and millions of men recruited and trained in all forms of fighting and war effort. The escort carrier, the destroyer, radar and other electronic devices defeated and then smashed the submarine menace.
Our Navy transported and safeguarded the invasion forces to Africa and Europe, and then smashed the enemy beachheads to afford them a landing. Our still small forces in the Pacific turned back the threat to our lifeline to Australia at the Coral Sea battle, and then drove the first entering wedge into the Japanese conquered empire at Guadalcanal.
We guarded the landings that reconquered the Philippines, our carrier forces seized control of the air everywhere it was needed, and our Fleet broke the back of the Japanese Navy in the great naval battles of the Philippine Sea and of Leyte Gulf. Our submarines destroyed the majority of the Japanese merchant marine, as well as innumerable Japanese naval combat ships. When we seized Okinawa, we seized a point just off Japan from which we could, and did, destroy the remnants of the Japanese Navy and bomb the Japanese homeland into final submission—a submission that would inevitably have come anyway from the strangling blockade we had thrown around Japan.
With a greater army and more planes than she had at the time of Pearl Harbor, Japan surrendered because with the destruction of her Navy and merchant marine she could not obtain from outside those necessities without which Japan could not even live, much less fight. Nor is the Navy content to rest on its present laurels. Long a leader in invention and research, our Navy is already studying new weapons, new methods—the atomic bomb and guided missiles, for instance.
Whatever new weapons, or defenses against new weapons, science can develop, the U. Navy intends to incorporate them into itself, to make sure that the Navy shall always be strong enough to perform its historic function of defense of our own country and of offense against enemy countries. It is to be hoped that every American will exert his effort and influence to see that that goal is achieved—that the U. Navy will always remain, as it is today, the world's greatest sea power.
From its inception the U. Navy has been a servant of the nation, defending broad national interests no less than our extensive shores. Too weak during the Revolution to cope with Britain's vast armadas, our little Continental Navy strove principally to support our Army with sorely needed supplies by convoying friendly merchantmen or capturing enemy supply ships. However our few naval ships, commanded by such daredevils as John Paul Jones, John Barry, and Lanbert Wickes, aided by reckless American privateers, attacked Britain even in her own homewaters, and their raids on British shipping were a strong force in causing Britain to acknowledge our independence.
Sea power itself, in the shape of the French Navy, did however have a conclusive role in the war by helping Washington's land armies bottle up Cornwallis at Yorktown in what was the decisive battle of the war. Interference with our rapidly expanding commerce was the main cause of our next three wars—the undeclared war with France beginning in , the war with the Barbary pirates beginning in , and the War of with Great Britain.
In all three wars the U. Navy amply justified its existence. Our frigate Constellation defeated two French frigates in and , our Mediterranean squadron under Commodore Preble vanquished Tripoli, and by naval display of force we compelled Tunis to make terms. Against Great Britain our Navy, as during the Revolution, was vastly outnumbered, but our naval ships and privateers again exerted a tremendous effect. Though Washington was captured and burned, a British invasion of New York from Canada was halted by our naval victory under Commodore Macdonough on lake Champlain, and in similar fashion Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry saved the west by his triumph on Lake Erie.
Only our naval successes in this war saved us from harsh terms at the peace table. During the ensuing fifty years, our Navy's contribution was mainly that of commerce protection, extending our commercial relations abroad, and scientific exploration. The U. Navy exterminated piracy in the West Indies, and protected our commerce from the Mediterranean to China and the Philippines.
On an official Naval exploration expedition, Commodore Wilkes, USN, discovered the Antarctic Continent and collected much commercial and scientific information. Commodore Wilkes's explorations were a forerunner to those of Admiral Robert E. Byrd, who flew over both the North and South Poles. Lieutenant Matthew F. Maury, USN, began those scientific studies which originated the present great sciences of oceanography and meteorology. During the Mexican War our Navy was almost entirely responsible for the conquest of California. The tragic Civil War found many American naval officers "going south" to serve in the Confederate Navy.
Their resourcefulness in pioneering new weapons such as the submarine, the ironclad, and the submarine mine was amazing, but the far stronger Federal Navy with its blockade strangled the Confederacy; its ships on inland waters cut the Confederacy into sections, and gave the Federal Armies the naval support necessary for the success of Grant's amphibious operations and other great land campaigns. During World War I, the German Navy was so securely "contained" by the British that our naval task was mainly that of convoying our troops to Europe and guarding against enemy U-boat and surface raiders.
The attack on Pearl Harbor, December 7, , plunged us into World War II which saw our fleets move and support our Armies to help crush the Axis in Europe and, almost singlehanded, crush the Japanese Navy and bring Japan to ultimate surrender. On V-J day Japan's Navy had practically ceased to exist. Navy today is the pre-eminent sea-air power of the world.
It is to be hoped that the American people will never permit it to decline from that secure position. The Stars and Stripes flying from the masthead of the U. A year later, on the night of September 23, he laid the old U. It was in this battle that John Paul Jones uttered his famous words: "I have not yet begun to fight! American ships shown here are the Cyane , the Savannah , and the Levant. Sailors landed from American naval ships made certain our ultimate possession of California.
Our naval policy and our Navy have both affected and been affected by Japan and the Philippines since the 's. At that time the Philippines were a Spanish colony almost closed to all foreign trade; Japan was even more isolationist, refusing even to allow foreigners to land, and imprisoning foreign sailors unfortunate enough to be shipwrecked on her coasts.
It was this last that brought the U. Navy into the picture, since it was the Navy's job to protect our commerce and seamen anywhere on the globe. Another incentive was the fact that our trade with China was becoming important, and Japan lay on the direct China trade route. Steamships were coming into use, and it was important not only to protect our sailors but also to obtain coaling privileges in Japan for our steamers. Thus it was that Commodore Matthew C. Perry USN, was selected as our negotiator. Both by tactful diplomacy and by the eye-opening display of force in the naval squadron that accompanied him, he persuaded the reluctant Japanese to sign the first treaty they had ever made with a foreign power.
From that moment, however, Japan began to progress. By she had modern industries and a modern navy with which she easily defeated China thereby acquiring Formosa, and she even looked longingly at the Philippines and other islands to the south. She was forestalled there, however, by the victory of Commodore later Admiral of the Navy George Dewey, USN, later honored with the highest naval rank ever conferred by our Congress. Naval Squadron, including two of our latest and most powerful steam warships, may be seen at anchor in the harbor.
The sight of the powerful ships and guns, as well as the superbly armed and disciplined bluejacket and Marine landing parties, made a very potent impression on the Japanese, who had previously refused to enter into any negotiations with any nation. Perry was both a natural diplomat, as well as a naval officer, however, and he persisted in a combination of presents and sternness until the Japanese signed the treaty. Navy, but many crack Southern naval officers joined the Confederacy, where with their inventive skill they tried to perfect new secret weapons.
On March 8, , the Confederate ironclad ram Virginia, better known as the Merrimac, sank two of the finest Union warships at Hampton Road and threatened to destroy others. But next day the North's own version of the ironclad, the famous turreted Monitor, appeared and fought the Merrimac to a draw. On the Mississippi, fleets of converted river steamboats fought a battle of ramming as well as gunfire; Union victory here destroyed the last Confederate hope of defending the inland rivers.
The Merrimac and Monitor engaged in the world's first battle between ironclads. It was the landing of the U. Army forces at Siboney, five miles east of Santiago, Cuba. Peculiar to this incident was the army's total dependence upon naval landing force technique at transporting the troops ashore. General Shafter, Commander of the U. Army troops, said without naval assistance "he could not have landed in ten days and perhaps, not at all. Most of the troops were put ashore within two days. Fortunately the landing was entirely unopposed. Naval artillery covered the disembarkation, but, all though it was present in subsequent Army operations, it was not needed.
An American Army was formed to invade Cuba, and American naval squadrons were sent to blockade the island and to support the troop landings. Spain's best fleet under Admiral Cervera barely slipped into the fortified harbor of Santiago, Cuba, before it was blockaded there by the American naval forces under Admiral Sampson and Commodore Schley. On the morning of July 3 Cervera's fleet tried to escape to the westward. The American battleships and cruisers immediately moved into action, and the running battle lasted for fifty miles along the coast.
But within three hours the entire Spanish fleet was destroyed. As the Spanish Asiatic Fleet had already been sunk, Spain asked for terms. American sea power had won the war within days. On the declaration of war our little fleet in China was ordered immediately to attack the Spanish fleet in the Philippines. Six nights later Commodore Dewey in his flagship Olympia slipped into Manila Bay regardless of powerful land forts and underwater mines.
At daylight he located the Spanish Fleet off Cavite and before noon had completely destroyed every Spanish vessel. This victory won the Philippines for the United States. Utility Squadron One, U. Navy's oldest aviation unit is shown here in its early days while making an aerial survey of Alaska in On Sept. On that day Hitler, despite sacred treaties, despite every promise, hurled the German legions into Poland.
It was the end of an era of appeasement during which peace-loving nations had made every effort to placate the Axis Powers. The League of Nations was powerless. Peaceful America had begged and pleaded, but the Axis was insatiable. Almost on the heels of his brutal ultimatum Hitler marched and began the war that would engulf the world. Desperately the Poles resisted, but within two weeks the German Wehrmacht had swept over the land. Danzig fell; but in the Westerplatte, the Polish fort and munitions dump in Danzig harbor, the little polish garrison held out heroically.
German bombardment by land and sea knocked the fort to rubble; raging fires swept the ruins. Blood and flesh could do no more—the Nazi swastika flag flew triumphant over the fort. But Poland had not died in vain. Her sufferings, her streams of blood cried aloud to the world. And even the United States, determined though she was to avoid war, heard, and began to prepare for any eventuality. Keep out of war she would if she could, but with war enflaming the world she must look to her defenses. The first step taken in this line was to strengthen the Navy, always the nation's first line of defense.
On September 8 the President declared a limited national emergency and authorized the recall to active duty of the officers, men, and nurses on the retired and reserve lists of the Navy and Marine Corps. By this step the authorized enlisted personnel of the Navy was automatically increased from , to , Triumphant German troops raising the swastika flag over the Westerplatte. This is a German Army photograph. Unready but unafraid, the British accepted the war, that, by their treaties, was automatically thrust upon them by Hitler's invasion of Poland.
Some, even with bags already packed for mobilization, listened solemnly, almost curiously to the war proclamation that applied alike to King and Commoner. At 11 A. The war of consisted of many spectacular encounters between American and British vessels of war. The frigate Essex , armed with six pound guns instead of the usual or pounders, was the first American man-of-war to round Cape Horn and the Cape of Good Hope. Under Captain David Porter, she took the largest number of prizes in the war, but was defeated by the British ship-of-war Phoebe on 28 March in the engagement shown here.
The Enterprise meets the Boxer in an even match, 5 September , with the victory going to the American vessel, although both captains were killed in action. In peacetime marker buoys, such as are shown above, mark both the channel and the danger spots to guide ships safely in and out of port. But in wartime such safety aids are removed and replaced by deadly mine fields, the location and extent of which are "top secret. Mines were of various types. Magnetic mines were detonated when their magnetic field was disturbed by the passage of a metal ship. The acoustic mine was activated by the noise of a ship's propellers.
The front page of "L'Intransigeant" headlines the news that England has already been at war since eleven o'clock and that France's ultimatum to Germany will expire at five o'clock in the afternoon. But already events were in motion that were to bring the war home to America. On the first day of the war the British liner Athenia was suddenly torpedoed by a German U-boat, and 30 Americans were lost. All America was shocked by the news. The French newspaper "L'Intransigeant" headlines the British declaration of war and the French ultimatum.
The British aircraft carrier Courageous , seen here from the deck of the great battle cruiser Rodney , had but little time to live after this picture was taken. Putting to sea on the declaration of war, she was sunk by a German submarine in the North Sea on September 17, the submarine in turn being sunk by British warships. Again U-boats harried the seas, preying on British, French, and ultimately American shipping in the Atlantic; and again British surface ships set up their strangling blockade on the ports of Germany and German-occupied countries.
But warships cannot be built in a day, and Britain had unfortunately permitted her Navy to decline during the long years of peace. The lesson was not wasted on the United States, and American Naval officers strove earnestly to, bring the Navy to strength. On land the warring forces faced each other in a stalemate, with Maginot line opposed to the Western Wall. Between the two lines in the no-man's land of field and forest, barbed wire and pillboxes, raiding parties fought with rifle and machine gun, and grenades.
Built at a cost of over five hundred million dollars, the French Maginot line proved the futility of trusting to fixed fortifications instead of mobile forces. The German Army photograph shows a Nazi soldier in the act of throwing a hand grenade through the gun port of a French pillbox near the Maginot line. This period of anxious dreary waiting was called the "phony war. On November 4, , only two months after the outbreak of the war in Europe, President Roosevelt asked Congress to repeal the Arms Embargo, a provision of our Neutrality Act which prohibited the sale by Americans of arms and munitions to belligerent countries.
America's first thought had been to stay out of the European War, and hence the United States, in concert with the other American republics, had in October established a neutral zone around the Americas, excepting belligerent Canada, and the U. Navy was already patrolling this neutral zone which extended some miles to sea. In all sorts of weather our destroyers and other patrol craft searched the seas inside the zone, reporting all belligerent vessels found therein. But it was obvious that our fellow democracies in Europe needed all the help they could get to withstand the terrific assault of the Axis armies—and the thing they needed most was arms and ammunition.
By repeal of the Arms Embargo Britain and France could buy American arms and munitions and take them home in their ships, whereas Italy and Germany, not having control of the sea, could not. This was the first step taken by the United States to show its sympathy and desire to aid the democracies of Europe and its antagonism to the Axis powers and their ruthless dictators. President Roosevelt, seated at his desk, reads the Repeal Bill, while Vice President Garner, Secretary of State Hull, and other prominent government officials and legislators look on. Under the terms to the Treaty of Versailles, Germany's Navy had been limited in numbers and sizes of warships.
In an effort of evade the limitations, German Naval engineers had constructed "pocket battleships"—small battleships of great speed, gun power, and armor. With the outbreak of war Hitler sent these as well as his U-boats to prey on enemy shipping. In late this ship was raiding in the South Atlantic when her presence was reported and three British cruisers under the command of Commodore Harwood were sent to intercept her. The pursuers finally came up with the German raider off the South American Coast but well inside the Neutrality Zone which the American republics had requested the belligerents to respect.
Although armed only with six and eight inch guns against the Graf Spee's inch main battery, the British ships resolutely closed for action. While the British cruiser Exeter was put out of action, the two remaining cruisers pressed the attack home. In trying to dodge the Exeter's torpedoes, the Graf Spee took two heavy six-inch broadsides from the Ajax and the Achilles. The damaged German turned and ran full speed for the safety of the territorial waters of Uruguay and dropped anchor in the harbor of Montevideo.
Under the rules of International Law the Graf Spee could not remain long in neutral waters, nor make battle repairs there, and she was thousands of miles away from any assistance from a German base. The pocket battleship remained in Montevideo harbor for the three days allowed under International Law, but then was forced by the Uruguayan government to put to sea. Rather than fight again, the German captain stopped in the Rio de la Plata, opened the sea-cocks, and set the ship afire.
The destruction of the Graf Spee brought home to Hitler what American naval officers have always known —the value of far-spread naval bases from which ships can operate and to which they can return for repairs and renewing stores.
And it also brought home to Hitler the fact that even the strongest army in the world cannot take the place of a Navy. The picture shows the scuttled and flaming raider in her death throes. She was described by the British commander as "… ablaze from end to end, flames reaching almost as high as the top of the control tower, a magnificent and most cheerful sight. Advances of the Germans in Norway were met by continued resistance. British planes and warships sped to the battle where, in the harbor of Narvik, they, together with other Allied sea forces, inflicted a severe defeat on the Germans by destroying seven destroyers and practically clearing the harbor of German craft.
From the newly acquired bases in Norway, German bombing planes raided the Scapa Flow area where they attacked three cruisers and the battleship Rodney upon which they scored a bomb hit. The Germans in southern Norway, after consolidating their gains, began dividing the region into isolated pockets by a series of panzer movements as they had done in Poland. German sea planes float calmly on a mirror-like lake at Stavanger before being attacked by British Royal Air Force bombers from which the picture was taken.
The German planes had been used to ferry troops by way of Denmark. German and Norwegian officers salute the mast as the Norwegian flag is lowered on a Nazi-captured vessel in this photograph from German sources. From the start of the war Germany, in floods of propaganda, had proclaimed brotherhood with her Northern neighbors.
How much this meant to the Scandinavian countries can be seen in this picture where four Danish submarines lie next to their mother ship ready for action in any emergency. The emergency finally struck April 9, Germany, still proclaiming "benevolent protection" of the Northern countries against the designs of the Allies, sent hordes of her troops pouring into Norway and Denmark by air, sea, and, BELOW, by land. Norway reciprocated Germany's "spirit of fraternity" by sinking the German cruiser Bluecher laden with troops and Gestapo men and the cruiser Karlsruhe. He was to lead the English people through the most terrible time in their history and was to go down as one of England's greatest war leaders.
This was one of Churchill's speeches in which he represented the indomitable spirit of the British. A month later he spoke again to Commons after Dunkirk, when England was in danger of invasion—this time his immortal " …We shall fight them on the landing grounds, we shall fight them in the fields and in the streets… We shall never surrender… ".
With this war came many new methods of warfare including the use of parachute troops and air-borne supplies to strike swift, stunning blows and capture objectives far beyond the enemy lines. This German photograph shows how the Nazis, Fighting in the Narvik area, from which the British were evacuated, were kept supplied with ammunition and food. Planes flew from the southern part of the Norwegian peninsula in all types of weather to drop men and supplies by parachute. The Germans later used this type of war in the invasions of Crete and Greece.
The supplies shown here are being dropped on the Narvik area. The plane is a Junkers JU, a tri-motored personnel, cargo plane with a large load capacity. Six days before the invasion of Poland, Germany pledged to respect the Low Countries, Holland and Belgium, in return for their absolute neutrality. However, on May 10, , after falsely accusing these countries of being unneutral, the Nazis bombed The Hague and the Nazi war machine rolled again. In two weeks the two countries had surrendered.
Trenches along the Harbor of Schemingue, Holland, dug as that peaceful country got ready for the event of war. A Nazi soldier examines the litter of abandoned ration boxes and uniforms alongside a truck in territory retaken by the Germans. On 10 June, , while France was at the last gasp of organized resistance against the Nazis, Italy declared war.
After stabbing her in the back, Italy confined herself to air bombing of Malta, Alexandria, and Gibraltar. She invaded the southern part of France around the Alps just in time to join in the hurrah and the spoils. II Duce's troops which had beaten down the primitive Ethiopians were soon to make a sorry showing against Greece. Italy attempted to gain supremacy of the sea in the Mediterranean, but met with no degree of success. The British Fleet tried to seek the Italians out and engage them in battle, but the Italian Fleet remained in hiding and finally surrendered when Italy capitulated.
The wheel of history took a full and tragic turn for France on 23 June, , when representatives of a beaten France were compelled to come to terms with German military chieftains. To stress the reversed situation the armistice was signed in the same railroad car where the Armistice of was signed. General Charles Huntzinger, member of the French Deputation, is second from the left.
Weisbaden, Germany. The Armistice Commission that arranged the carrying out by France of the German terms is shown here in their first session. The humiliation of France was complete. Bombs are no respecter of property. Amid the ruins of a peer's 17th century mansion, Londoners curiously browse in the library whose roof has been demolished in the course of a Luftwaffe bombing raid.
Accounts of damage and destruction in London slowly impressed Americans with the potential horrors of metropolitan air raids and made them determined that enemy planes should never be given the opportunity to wreak similar destruction on our own cities. A good many Americans, however did not appreciate the extent of the suffering and destruction borne by Londoners with typical British fortitude.
It was difficult for New Yorkers or San Franscians or Texans to visualize how an enemy's bombs could disrupt the familiar organization of any city's life. Pictures like this one gave us an idea of what we might suddenly have to face some night. If a bomb missed your house, as in this picture see crater below , its concussion could still kill you or at least make you homeless. And there was little humor in finding a double-decker bus in your living-room.
But the British people carried on, undaunted. While London reeled under the impact of Luftwaffe block-busters President Roosevelt and Prime Minister Churchill went ahead with joint conferences of mutual interest to their two countries. One of the most decisive acts resulted from such interest in March of , when the vital "Lend-Lease" provision was signed.
Yet Londoners still had to run for their underground bomb shelters when the air raids came, and dig out the explosion rubble in the morning. Here is a typical morning scene where crews have already cleared the obstructions to transportation. Often the most sacred temples of British institutions were indiscriminately hit in the blitz raids. The very heart of English legal tradition, the Middle Temple, is shown here mercilessly damaged by an attack that also struck the Cathedral of St. Paul and the Parliament Buildings. Museums, libraries, and priceless collections of legal records were destroyed.
Such wanton demolition was a vivid warning to Americans who knew the services to civilization performed by national institutions. At the beginning of the war Great Britain had suffered severely from the attrition of operations at sea, particularly in destroyers. Faced with this situation, Great Britain entered into an agreement with the United States under the terms of which 50 of our older destroyers were exchanged for the right to establish naval bases on British territory in the Atlantic.
In addition we were granted long leases for bases in Newfoundland and Bermuda. Winston Churchill signing the agreement, watched by Mr. Winant, left, the American Ambassador, and Mr. Vincent Massey, the Canadian High Commissioner, right.
The acquisition of bases operated to advance our sea frontier several hundred miles in the direction of our potential enemies in the Atlantic and gave us added security not only for the present, but for many years in the future. The bases thus leased by the United States were, briefly; Antigua, B. Lucia, B. American sailors acquainting their British comrades with the depth charge mechanism on one of the fifty over-age destroyers which were transferred. Early in the war the Navy undertook a great expansion of its system of advance bases, many of which represented the consolidation of gains made by combat units.
Depending on the circumstances, whether they were gained as a result of a raid or as a result of an advance, the permanency of their construction was varied to meet the situation. In the south and central Pacific the entire campaign was a battle for advance bases where we could establish supply ports, ship repair facilities, and landing fields to act as a backstop for continuing offensives. Advance bases range in size from small units for the maintenance and repair of PT boats, manned by a handful of officers and men, to major bases comprising floating drydocks, pattern ships, foundries, fully equipped machine shops, and electrical shops, staffed by thousands of specialists.
Some of these bases are general purpose bases, others are established for a special purpose. A radioman stands duty in the control tower at the U. Naval Air Station, Argentia, Newfoundland clearing planes for take-offs and landings. With the flow of lend-lease materials from U. Western Hemisphere lines were set as far east as Iceland, and the United States declared all waters to the westward to be neutral.
The United States was the only nation in the Western Hemisphere able to patrol this vast area. Germany, although not at war with this nation, boldly entered these waters to torpedo the U. It was during this period that the Navy brought occupation troops to Iceland, that the Coast Guard helped patrol Greenland, long eyed by the Nazis as a weather observation post. Attacks by Germany on the warships and on merchant ships flying the U. The first guns on merchant ships were mounted just a few months before Pearl Harbor.
English docks piled high with Lend-Lease materials from the United States. In early April, , mighty Germany invaded tiny Yugoslavia and in three weeks occupied the country. It was while Germany was over-running such helpless countries as Yugoslavia that the Congress authorized, in a series of legislative efforts, the increase of our Navy from a two-ocean Navy to a five-ocean Navy, and U. Naval strategists foresaw the day when Germany would have to be defeated at sea in order to defeat her on the land. Thus began the planning which eventually won the Battle of the Atlantic.
Here, in a German Army photograph, radioed to the United States, are shown Nazi troops in rubber boats fording the Drava River in the drive on Zagreb, capital of Croatia, in northern Yugoslavia. Quickly completing the Yugoslav campaign, the Nazis moved into Greece to save the face of partner Mussolini. British surface vessels entered the Grecian campaign depending upon support from shore based aircraft, which was inadequate. This failure on the part of shore based aircraft when operating with surface units gave impetus to the United Stated carrier construction program and proved the theory which was to give our Navy the great mobile, carrier task force.
Retreating, but undiscouraged, smiling British troops board ship as they left Greece. Flushed with easy victories over Poland, France, and the Low Countries, and the Balkans, Hitler suddenly turned treacherously on Russia whom he thought he had deceived with one of his false peace pacts. On June 22, he began an all out attack on the greatest scale ever yet conceived by man. With between and divisions in the surprise attack, the Germans counted on a quick capture of Moscow and the Caucasus.
German grenadiers waving a swastika flag to show Stuka pilots their positions so they would not bomb their own lines. German tanks and half-tracks advancing on a Soviet position in a thrust on the Orel-Belgorod sector. Both pictures are German Army photographs. Sea power means more than fleets of ships and swarms of planes. It means men—trained to fight with the ships and planes; repair, supply, maintain them; plan strategy and tactics, outwit the enemy and detect the enemy's plans, and search along the frontiers of scientific research for new combat devices and new techniques.
Trained manpower is the most scarce and most valuable element in the formula of naval power— and the most difficult to obtain readily in sufficient quantities. Even in the future of scientific miracles when perhaps a push-button Navy might become possible, a multitude of men still would be required to maintain, repair and supply the delicate instruments which would control the new-fangled missiles and ghost ships. And at least some men would be needed to push the many-colored buttons! A modern Navy in war or peace is a vast and complex organization of warships, auxiliaries, planes, ports, harbors—from hulking aircraft carriers manned by thousands, to tiny PT boats, from teeming Navy yards deafening with the roar of industry to the lonely quiet of island outposts sending out an electronic pulse beat to guide some ship or plane to safety.
For such a sprawling, intricate machine is required a multitude of skills and crafts, brains and brawn: machinists, metalsmiths, radarmen, signalmen, boatswain's mates, and just ordinary seamen to perform the many jobs required to keep the machine operating effectively. Also needed are qualified officers to lead the men, supervise their activities and training, and administer the Navy's operations. And these leaders must have the personal qualities of character and executive ability, general knowledge and understanding to be able to handle men under the cramped and trying living conditions on fighting ships.
In peacetime training men for the Navy can afford a leisurely, careful, thoroughgoing process with time available for theory, minute details and niceties of naval customs and traditions. But in the headlong rush of wartime, training must be telescoped, concentrated, packed hard and delivered fast, taking advantage of every shortcut, cutting away every peacetime frill.
In the recent war, the Navy training program had to be accelerated and expanded simultaneously to supply almost overnight the men needed to man the ships, planes and other Naval weapons. At one time eleven ships were coming from the yards daily—ready for action. Supply depots, repair bases, and advanced bases. The Navy's training mission was to draw more than three million Americans from their civilian occupations and transform them rapidly into seamen, gunner's mates, air gunners, combat air crewmen, firemen, armed guardsmen, signalmen, Seabees, bomb disposal experts, radar-men, amphibians, chemical warfare experts, ship repairmen, photograph interpreters, ordnance men, sonar-men, and damage control experts, and other specialties.
Aviation training presented such a tremendous undertaking that a separate program was created to fulfill the Navy's mission to become absolute masters of the air. To accomplish this task, the Navy trained 60, pilots, , air technicians, 3, air navigators, and 45, combat air-crewmen. To service carrier based and land based planes, over units, such as overhaul units and carrier service units were staffed, trained and sent to forward combat areas.
It was a comparatively simple move to take trained or skilled men and assign them tasks closely related to their civilian jobs. Stenographers became yeomen after brief training. Carpenters became Seabees after learning how to defend what they were building. But for the mass of men who had to be taught entirely new skills the training job became a monumental program, the success of which was attested to by the defeat of the Axis powers. Introducing them to Navy life, customs, traditions, discipline, and teamwork.
Educating them in a specialty, craft, or professional skill. Training, them in advanced courses. Newcomers to the Navy are first introduced to military life. Enlisted men are taught to live, work, and fight together. This basic education is known as recruit training—an intensive period of drills and lectures lasting from 8 to 12 weeks. For officers, this basic course is provided by Naval Reserve, Midshipmen, and indoctrination schools.
After this basic training, officers and men usually are sent to sea or to specialty schools where they are instructed in definite skills or the fundamentals of the naval profession. Enlisted trade schools are operated on the highest educational standards. The finest of equipment, textbooks, training aids, and skilled guidance are supplied. Advanced officers' schools train Naval officers in special skills or technical knowledge, such as radar, gunnery, and communications. They are trained as administrators of high technical ability who must learn how to integrate the tasks of many technicians operating in many different fields.
Beyond this advanced training, officers and men are sent to Fleet Operational Training Commands where they are organized into tactical units for more extensive instruction. From this course they board their ships for combat operations. As many as a quarter of a million officers and men at one time have undergone basic training during the war.
About 80 per cent of these went to the Fleet training commands, and the other 20 per cent direct to the Fleet. The training program derives its original strength from the mature and experienced petty officers and chiefs, and from professional Navy officers usually trained in the Naval Academy.
With this nucleus of enlisted men and officers carefully schooled during peacetime, the Navy's training program shifts to a wartime basis by rapid pyramiding. Policies, standards, curricula, and textbooks stem from this central source. With the coming of war, training courses were streamlined, abbreviated, slimmed down to bare essentials. Experienced educators were brought in from the nation's leading universities and schools to help formulate the program and engage in the actual instruction. Classroom facilities were established at a double-quick rate—in traditional halls of learning, in hastily built structures, in drafty piers, in seaport warehouses, and on every ship.
Classes were held formally in the usual schoolroom manner or informally in mess rooms, on decks, around a 20mm gun, anywhere possible. There was nothing cut or dried about this training. It was given whenever it could be arranged, sandwiched in between periods of combat and ship maintenance. And even during combat, the learning process continued, often most effectively. Every educational device, either long tried or in the experimental stage, was employed to train the men faster and better. Visual aids were used, such as moving pictures and slides, simply written and cartoon illustrated books, mock-up models of ship and instruments, actual models, blackboard talks, bull sessions, special teaching devices like the attack teacher for anti-submarine warfare, miniature layouts of navigational aids, etc.
Basically, Navy men learned by doing, by repeating the same motions and mental processes until they became almost reflex actions. Under the stress of battle, what was imperative was the prompt decision, the quick execution of previously well-rehearsed maneuvers. The Navy's training program during the recent war period has revealed significantly that American men from all walks of life can be welded rapidly into a fighting team, that they can absorb unfamiliar knowledge and skills under high pressure and intensive instruction, and that they can employ the newest technical knowledge in effective operation of the latest weapons to win a war.
This war highlighted the historic anomaly that is America—a peace-loving giant who can turn overnight into the world's most fearsome warrior. Men from all walks of life, from the farms and factories, from the schools and shops, all answered the call for men to man the ships and planes of an expanding "first line of defense," a Navy which all too soon was to be called upon to protect the country from the enemy.
Into the Training Centers at Great lakes, Illinois; San Diego, California; and Sampson, New York came these men, many of whom had never seen the ocean before, to learn seamanship, communications, gunnery, and maintenance, to learn to work together and fight together as part of a team. They were trained in the Arts of War by the most modern and complete system of training aids, special devices that helped them learn to distinguish between friendly and enemy aircraft, to save their lives if they should be marooned at sea, to do their jobs in the Fighting Fleet.
In a matter of weeks the farmer, the machinist, the student, and the storekeeper had been forged into a fighting body of men, disciplined, well trained, and ready to carry out their share of the fighting. In coastal shipyards the race to produce more, faster, better armed and armored ships became hotter and hotter. Battleships, which normally took 38 months to build, were ready to fight in 30 to 32 months.
Carriers, the mainstay of our war time fleet, were built in 16 months, less than half of the time required during peacetime years. Submarines and destroyers slid down the ways in "impossible" time. The giant that is America was awakened to the dangers that surrounded her, prepared to meet any and all aggressors. This review marks the end of "boot" training for the recruit. He is now ready to join the Fleet or to be sent to a service school to learn a specialized trade. At this point in his Naval career he has learned all that can be learned ashore. The next phase of his training, at sea, gives him a chance to put into practice the things he has learned.
Abandon Ship Drill at on East Coast port. Drills and practices are held constantly to keep the lessons learned in training camps fresh in mind. The first blows of war invariably are directed at the Navy, the great bulwark behind which the other forces can begin to organize. So the Navy trains ahead of time. At the U. Skipper or messboy, every man was expected to qualify at cruising, diving, fighting, or repairs. How they learned this deadliest and most dangerous of all fighting trades the Japanese were fated to find out all too well.
As a part of the training which makes American submarines the world's best, recruits learn to use the Escape Tank. After a course of instruction in the use of the Momsen "lung," an artificial breathing device, the men are taken to escape chambers at various levels below the surface of the tank. From these chambers the men ascend to the surface, using the "lung. Before the hatch leading to the main tank is opened the chamber is flooded and all apparatus tested.
This type of practical work characterizes the Navy system of instruction and training for any eventuality. As a part of the Navy's extensive training aids program, radio controlled "drones" or pilotless aircraft were used to train anti-aircraft gunners. These "aerial robots" can be made to simulate suicide, dive bomber, and torpedo plane attacks, TDD's—Naval designation for one type of drone—frequently were used while the fleet was on its way to and returning from attacks against the enemy. These controlled robots developed greater accuracy and were far more popular with the men than the towed target sleeve, the gunnery device which they replaced.
A radio controlled target drone TDD-2 takes off from a ship's catapult under a reduced charge. It is then flown over the task force to give all the anti-aircraft gunners of the fleet a warm up for impending battles and to keep their skill at a high level. Into the busy classrooms and laboratories of the Naval Academy at Annapolis, Md. Here they strive to master the military and nautical sciences, and to master themselves, through unending discipline.
Wearing their working uniforms, Academy midshipmen tackle an examination. Being trained to release men from shore jobs to sea duty, Waves tackle the job of becoming Aviation Machinist's mates and Aviation Metalsmiths. These Waves receive a concentrated four months practical course in all phases of engine operation and maintenance which fits them for work on shore based aircraft.
These devices enable fledgling fliers to shoot down enemy planes, bomb objectives, engage in blind flying and many other activities—all without leaving the ground. Shown above is a star recognition trainer. The device enables the instructor to demonstrate the relationships the heavenly bodies to one another. One section in formation is preparing to land, while another is taxiing into position for a takeoff. Gathered around the schedule board a group of students listens to a last minute briefing by their instructor.
As part of the complex program that makes the United States Naval Aviator the best trained pilot in the world, aviation cadets are given instruction in the use of oxygen and high-altitude flying equipment. Cadets spend many hours in low pressure, low temperature tanks getting used to the sensations of high altitude work. A student officer reloads the twin. Rearming and conditioning of all aerial gunnery equipment is an important phase of aviation training. The student pilot must learn not only to fly the plane, but also to do all of the work on it normally done by the air crewman.
This work includes engines, structures, ordnance and overall maintenance, and gives the pilot a thorough knowledge of every phase of his work and the ability to check on his crewmen. During the war years the Navy trained for its fighting fleets more than 3,, officers and men at naval and air training stations, midshipman schools, and NROTC colleges. Picked enlisted men were sent to special service schools which turned out everything from machinist's mates to cooks and bakers.
Regulars, both officers and enlisted personnel, trained the new reserves, and then these in turn trained other reserves. Experts, with fresh combat experience, came back to train new replacements in all the latest tactics and weapons of war. The picture above shows recruits getting a lesson in lowering away a lifeboat at the Great Lakes Training Station. As part of its program to release sufficient men for fighting, the women's reserves were set up to handle many shore-based jobs.
Wave mechanics cross the field at the naval air station where they are stationed. Before long there were few jobs in the maintenance and repair of planes that were not being performed by women. With the tremendous need for ships to supply the seven-ocean fleet, the United States shipyards performed a masterful job of building and repairing. This view of the Newport News Shipyard shows carriers and cruisers being built and outfitted to take their places with the Fleet. While most of the merchant ships lost in the Atlantic during the dark days of and were lost as a result of enemy action, some were the victims of accident and shipwreck.
Sailing in convoy, blacked out, was difficult to say the least. The oil tanker Montana burns at sea after colliding with the freighter John Morgan , 1 June , about twenty miles off Cape Henry, Virginia. The fire was put out and the tanker returned to port for repairs. When casualties occurred further from shore the results were not always so fortuitous. In order to maintain its consistently high standard of accuracy in the specialized field of naval ordnance, the Navy has hundreds of thousands of acres set aside in the United States for use as Naval proving grounds to test new devices, guns, rockets, and guided missiles.
At Dahlgren, Virginia, one of the Navy's largest proving grounds, a inch naval gun fires a projectile through rings to determine its velocity. Smaller caliber guns are proved in salvoes to speed up the tempo of wartime production. In mid-August, , the world was amazed to learn that President Roosevelt had secretly met Prime Minister Churchill of Great Britain, and the two leaders had agreed on the provisions of the memorable "Atlantic Charter.
The picture shows President Roosevelt being greeted by the captain of H. Prince of Wales as he stepped aboard from the U. Augusta at Placentia Bay, Newfoundland. During a conversation with Prime Minister Churchill during their momentous Atlantic Charter meeting on August 10, President Roosevelt makes the British victory sign. The Charter was part of America's answer to the Tripartite Pact signed by Germany, Italy, and Japan in September, , which threatened combined Axis action against any neutral which should interfere with Axis aggressions. The United States had already challenged that threat by its Lend-Lease aid, its occupation of Iceland to forestall possible German invasion, and its naval patrol of northern hemispheric waters east to Greenland.
The Axis dictators should have recognized the importance of the Charter Meeting. King, General George C. With the lend-lease Act the United States had bound itself to provide materials for the defense of the European democracies against the Axis aggressors.
But with Nazi U-boats sinking neutral ships even in the Western Atlantic, what was the use of making and shipping goods only to be sunk? The answer was President Roosevelt's announcement of July, , that our Navy would convoy lend-lease goods as far as Iceland. It was cold, arduous work in the foggy, freezing, ice-menaced waters around Greenland and Iceland. Navy blimp hovering over a brood of merchantmen as it scans the water for U-boats. One hundred years ago this June, a determined brigade of Marines fought ferociously over the hallowed grounds of Belleau Wood.
The legacy of the first Women Marine Reservists, and all trailblazing Marines, serves as a reminder that the title Marine is not restricted by gender, color, or creed — it is a warrior spirit and distinguished role earned by an elite group. Marines lend a hand This year also marks 50 years since Marines fought ferocious battles against a worthy foe in some of the most austere locations of Vietnam. Hard lessons learned at Khe Sanh and Hue proved crucial to our successes during Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom — allowing us to secure victory in the fields of Sangin and on the urban battlefields of Fallujah.
It was also at Hue that now retired Sergeant Major John Canley charged enemy machine gun positions and put his own life on the line to ensure no Marine was left behind, epitomizing the true meaning of Semper Fidelis. For years, Marines have fought and won whenever and wherever the Nation calls. In the harshest conditions, over the most brutal terrain, and against the most formidable enemies, Marines defend the ideals of freedom with grit and tenacity.
Though battlefields change and capabilities evolve, history proves that true victory comes from the individual Marine with steeled resolve, the drive to overcome any obstacle, and the warrior spirit to fight on against all odds. It takes that steadfast faithfulness — Semper Fidelis — to Corps, country, and each other that abounds throughout our storied legacy. Cover photo by Cpl.
Tiana Boyd and Lance Cpl. Heather Atherton Robert B. Neller General, U. Marine Corps Commandant of the Marine Corps. Marines always available to lend a hand U. Marine Corps Sgt. Brian Fagan, center, with Combat Logistics Battalion 24, helps load supplies. Photo by Lance Cpl. Melanye Martinez. But every Marine also means something to the victims of natural disasters.
In the wake of natural disasters, the Marines are always ready to help.
Places like Puerto Rico, the U. Virgin Islands, and Houston — and even locally in Onslow County — may not be the sites of famous Marine Corps battles, but they still have a large piece in the history of the Marine Corps. Marines assigned to Combat Logistics Group 8. First responders of the Richlands Volunteer Fire Department offload civilians affected by Hurricane Florence from a 7-ton vehicle provided by Combat Logistics Group 8 at a local shelter in Jacksonville in September.
And after the initial danger from the hurricane had passed, Marines helped clean up, from cutting away downed trees that blocked neighborhood streets to cleaning area schools. We do greatly appreciate everyone from the Marine Corps. But that response is typical, Bryson said. Virgin Islands after Hurricane Irma. Hurricane Maria left Puerto Rico in ruins after making landfall on Sept. Both the 26th and 24th Marine Expeditionary Units supported relief efforts in the region. Virgin Islands and Florida all within about a month.
Farrell J. Jeffrey A. Young, sergeant major of the 26th MEU, said last year. The Marines also cleared more than 70 miles of road, and assessed 46 hospitals. Getting up there was hard work with mudslides and downed trees. Pedro Emmanuellidejesus, a platoon sergeant with Combat Logistics Regiment 45, which is based in Puerto Rico, said last year. I was in my apartment and the building was shaking. Ronald E. Bess, fires support officer for the 26th MEU, said last year.
Jonathan Sosner and Cpl. Juan A. Soto-Delgado from the 26th MEU contributed to this story. First Lt. It celebrates all year long, as the organization strives to keep the rich history of the Marine Corps alive. The musem collection includes a M42 Half-track. Photos courtesy of the Carolina Museum of the Marine. Museum board members such as Joe Houle, a retired sergeant major, and Lisa Potts, a retired chief warrant officer 5, stay heavily involved in the community to introduce others to Marine Corps values and history as well as to maintain artifacts.
The lessons of the past, the inspirational and heroic deeds of our ancestors and our modern-day brothers and sisters hold important messages and lessons for present and future generations. The museum will continue to provide its visitors with an immersive, experiential look into their accomplishments and character. A Reflection and Celebration Park that features a foot high Eagle, Globe and Anchor sculpture was dedicated in Ever since First Lt. Alfred A.
The combination of Marine assault support aircraft and close air support platforms allow us to maneuver rapidly and efficiently across a battlespace. Without Marine aviation, we lose significant advantages of speed and mobility from our maneuver warfare doctrine. Just about 50 miles north, the Marine Corps employs jet aircraft such as the AV-8B Harrier from Cherry Point, which is also home to a squadron of KCs that are used for midair refueling and transport.
Even unmanned aircraft used for reconnaissance have a home in Marine aviation.
Bert then stated that the money is in a bank in Arkansas. A Republican, Foss served in the state Legislature from and then as governor from to Attacks by Germany on the warships and on merchant ships flying the U. Foss was a Republican governor of South Dakota in the s, first commissioner of the American Football League in the s and president of the National Rifle Association from to While London reeled under the impact of Luftwaffe block-busters President Roosevelt and Prime Minister Churchill went ahead with joint conferences of mutual interest to their two countries. If such men experience rude, ungentle treatment from their superiors, it will create such heartburnings and resentments as are nowise consonant with that cheerful ardour and ambitious spirit that ought ever to be characteristic of officers of all grades.
Behind every aircraft is a team of mechanics, and of course, the pilots who fly them. Their professionalism, pride in their institution and commitment to supporting the Marine rifleman on the ground was inspiring. Our continuing ability to deploy Marine Expeditionary Units and Special Purpose MAGTFs are enhanced by the capabilities of the V and allow us to respond throughout the world when our nation needs us. Our supporting role as aviators to Marine ground elements enhances the ability of the Marine Air Ground Task Force to fight together in one battlespace, which forces every pilot to accept nothing less than perfection each time we fly.
Even when someone is down, it is up to you to pick them back up. My uncle was a Marine serving in Vietnam, and when he passed away I made a promise to him that I was going to be a Marine just like him.