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Customer Review

47 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Challenge to Conventional Wisdom, October 10, 2012
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This review is from: Islands of Destiny: The Solomons Campaign and the Eclipse of the Rising Sun (Hardcover)
Once again, John Prados has taken on conventional wisdom -- in this case the view that the Battle of Midway was the turning point in the Pacific War -- and forced us to re-think. As he painstakingly shows, the long and grinding campaign for Guadalcanal and the Solomons -- not Midway itself -- was the inflection point at which the rising sun began to set. I particularly liked Prados' dedication of this book "To all the veterans of World War II". I have only one quibble, which is true for almost every book on military history: more maps, better maps, please. Overall, an outstanding contribution.
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jan 31, 2013 5:51:51 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 1, 2013 6:14:58 AM PST
z says:
What you call the challenge to conventional wisdom is fairly standard thinking these days.

Read Frank at page 25 or so, he states very clearly that after Midway, the Imperial Navy had lost four carriers. The rest of the navy was largely in tact and superior in almost every measure to the US Navy including materiale , training, and tactics. In particular, the surface ship engagements near Guadalcanal demonstrate this. Japan's torpedos and night surface ship training were superior to those of the US navy. The IJN remained lethal.

Japan's failure in the aftermath of Midway was to consolidate its positon in many theaters--most notably isolate Australia through the use of these resources. Japan squandered its advantage through incompetence, inter-service rivalries and a complete failure to understand the stratgic import of the theater in mid-1942 and act on it. These are themes that are found in both Becke and Pearl's works.

The Prado book is hardly ground breaking.
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