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Alaska's Hidden Wars: Secret Campaigns on the North Pacific Rim Paperback – August 1, 2004

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

A World War II veteran and expert on Alaskan history offers what is more a collection of essays than a connected narrative. The essays cover various aspects of Alaska during that conflict that are seldom mentioned in the more general histories. For example, Hays covers the Alaskan Japanese Americans, who were sent south to internment camps, and the Nisei from those same camps, who came north to act as interpreters for army intelligence. Other topics include the great banzai charge on Attu, in which a Japanese American doctor, eventually killed serving in the imperial army, participated, and weather reporting, which was vital and in which weathermen faced such unexpected hazards as volcanic eruptions. Hays also chronicles the effects on morale of being in a bad-weather backwater with no prospect of seeing action or going home by means of excerpts from intercepted and censored correspondence, and the air campaign against Japanese bases in the Kurile Islands from both American and Japanese perspectives. A by-no-means dull or negligible regional contribution to WWII history. Roland Green
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

About the Author

Otis Hays, Jr. served in Alaska as an intelligence staff officer during World War II. Later, while a professor of journalism at the University of Tulsa, Oklahoma, he was recalled to active military service in 1951 and served as psychological warfare officer in the Far East and the Pentagon until 1965. He was director of Indo-China Affairs for the U.S. Information Agency during the Vietnam War from 1966 through 1972. Mr. Hays is the author of Home from Siberia: The Secret Odysseys of Interned American Airmen in World War II and The Alaska-Siberia Connection: The World War II Air Route. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 200 pages
  • Publisher: University of Alaska Press; 1 edition (August 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 188996364X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1889963648
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,541,065 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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The author has done a valuable service by unearthing material that sheds light on World War Two in the Northern Pacific island chains of the Aleutians and Kuriles. For this he is to be commended.

But the book does not rise much above the compliment "decent little book." The author writes in the sparing, bare-bones style of a journalist without imparting any sense of drama to the story. The facts are there, along with some interpretations, but no forceful sense of conviction. One could say that this is more of a series of articles rather than a book, per se. The book contains several appendices that could have been used to more effect in the chapters rather than tucked in at the end.

Nevertheless, author Hays does give the reader a better understanding of the war in the Northern Pacific, especially the effects on the troops who were stationed there.
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Format: Paperback
On the eve of World War II Japan, the US and the Soviet Union collided in the North Pacific - and Alaska's Hidden Wars: Secret Campaigns On The North Pacific Rim charts these conflicts for the first time, revealing not minor skirmishes but major campaigns which pitted Americans against the Japanese well before Pearl Harbor. Alaska's Hidden Wars tells of Japanese raids, American campaigns, and two years of air raids and bombardments in Alaska during the war. Newly declassified archives allows the story to final come to light!
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Format: Paperback
Hard book to find and I so appreciated having everything go perfectly.
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