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Easter Sunday, 1945, was also April 1st. In addition it was chosen as the start of the American invasion of Okinawa, cheerily code-named “Love Day”. (D-Day by this time had become a brand name, forever associated with the French Atlantic coast.)

In today’s post we want to point the reader to an excellent online book. The work focuses on Marines, but gives a good deal of both context and detail, from logistics challenges to combined arms problems.

nps.gov – The Final Campaign: Marines in the Victory on Okinawa
The link starts at the second section of the book, where it is pointed out that the landing would put ashore six divisions, supported by an enormous fleet, while campaigns were still not finished in the Philippines or on Iwo Jima. This focus of power so far from the USA was a tremendous strain on the logistics chain in place, which at times would be a limiting factor in the American advance.

Such a heavy reliance on artillery support stressed the amphibious supply system. The Tenth Army’s demand for heavy ordnance grew to 3,000 tons of ammo per day; each round had to be delivered over the beach and distributed along the front. This factor reduced the availability of other supplies, including rations.

On land, facing clever and coordinated defensive infantry and artillery tactics, American forces were stymied to make fast progress (at acceptable casualty rates). With three divisions at a time, with replacement regiments rotating in, across a span of as little as four miles, advances were halting.

General Buckner favored a massive application of firepower on every obstacle before committing troops in the open. … Colonel Wilburt S. “Big Foot” Brown, a veteran artilleryman commanding the 11th Marines, and a legend in his own time, believed the Tenth Army relied too heavily on firepower. “We poured a tremendous amount of metal into those positions,” he said. “It seemed nothing could be living in that churning mass where the shells were falling and roaring, but when we next advanced the Japs would still be there and madder than ever.”

These oft-repeated quotes played an important part in gaming of Operation Olympic for X-Day:Japan. On Kyushu three times as many divisions would have to be supported over a front twenty times as long. Japanese reinforcements, from infantry to shovel-wielding workers, would continue to flow in. The monumental clash of forces would be ugly and slow. Medals would be awarded by the crate – if the crates could ever be delivered.

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A big thanks goes out to all our readers, especially in the UK, for putting X-Day: Japan on Amazon top-100 lists for:
Books > History > Military History > World War II (UK)
Kindle Books > History > Military (UK)
Books > History > Military > Weapons & Warfare > Nuclear (US)

These are serious categories with good competition for your money and readership. It means a lot to be listed next to some great titles.

We also make a sake and vino toast (actually we’ll use American bourbon) to whoever put the book in the top five of the relevant English language lists in Japan and Italy, all three readers!

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[As always, Tuttle took time to sit down with the low ranking servicemen who make everything work.]

Over lunch I talked to some of the technicians based here. They work in different units, each of which has a job to do that changes as each base evolves. The Navy has got base building itself down to an art form, after lots of practice. Building an airfield, operating an airfield, operating planes out of the airfield, and doing heavy maintenance are jobs of different units. They each move into a new area in that order, just as some of the people and gear from the previous units are moving on to the next raw island.

Warrant Officer Lloyd Daniel, of Livingston, Montana, ran a team of earthmovers as the Seabees were expanding the small air strip the Japanese had here before. That airstrip is now almost twice as long as it was, and it has new brothers. His bulldozers are somewhere in the Philippines now, and most of his team is right behind them. He expects to fly out after finishing paperwork here.

Herman Davis, from Bowling Green, Florida, is an electrician’s mate with the unit that actually runs the base. They take over from the Seabees, and “make it civilized,” as he says. Sitting next to him is aviation ordnanceman Tom Close, of Pensacola, Florida. Tom works on guns and bomb racks, and often runs parts for the heavy maintenance guys.

I found these guys from different units sitting together not because of their common professional interests, but because of baseball. They are the core of the infield for the base team, and they’re worried about what to do for a shortstop once Mr. Daniel leaves. I’m sure they’ll do fine, but they’re from a relatively small base. The other bases each have a top notch squad, as does each combat division in the Marianas. They have a competitive league going, and big games coming up.

I asked the guys about other topics of interest, like the British election and the big conference at Potsdam, Germany. I couldn’t get a stated opinion on any of it, though they get regular world news here. They are much less concerned about how Prime Minister Clement Attlee will get along with President Truman than the number of combat aircraft they can help get in the air over Japan. They will debate the Potsdam proceedings only after the Japanese throw their own guns into the sea and give up.

Atlee, Truman, Stalin at Potsdam

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Hiroshima – Nagasaki Atomic Bombs Alternatives Illustrated in Journalistic Novel
70th Anniversary of Nuclear Weapons Use Renews Debate, X-Day: Japan Details Invasion from Ground Level

PRLog – July 10, 2015 – GREENVILLE, S.C. — Already an Amazon category best seller, X-Day: Japan will be officially relased with marketing support on July 16, 2015 – the 70th anniversary of the first atomic weapons test.

Many people have said ‘We should not have droped the bombs’. A few have asked, ‘What if we didn’t?’ Sparing nuclear attacks on Japanese cities would not a) end the war, nor b) make the atomic bombs go away. Any discussion of the debate is incomplete without mention of realistic alternatives.

X-Day: Japan follows a war correspondent across the World War Two Pacific and into the long-planned invasion of southern Japan. Other academic works and alternative histories have discussed the invasion and the politics around it. None of them have been told from a front line perspective, and none of them are supported by complete gaming of the battle.

Full of both human drama and political consequences, X-Day: Japan adds a major new facet to any discussion of the end of World War Two. Information about the book and the official preview can be found at
http://www.xdayjapan.com

Supporting the launch, for a limited time the book is ON SALE for only $.99 (ebook) or $8.99 (paperback). It is available from Amazon.com and most e-book retailers.

Press review copies are available on request.

CONTACT:
Stone Lake Press
1085 Old Clemson Hwy.
Suite E-203
Seneca, SC 29672

Shawn Mahaney, editor
sdmahaney at (project site domain given above)
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[Today’s peek behind the scenes is adapted from a post on Shawn D. Mahaney’s personal blog, https://riverratsc.wordpress.com/2015/06/07/d-day-week-on-the-internet/]

I compiled a book about the largest amphibious invasion in history. Trouble is, people hardly know about it. So to help people get a handle on the project I planned to reference that other better known invasion, the one known simply as D-Day. There’s no use fighting a nebulous thing like a public consciousness; “D-Day” will forever be the landings at Normandy, France, on June 6, 1944. Never mind that there was a d-day for every major plan leading up to that, amphibious or otherwise. Large amphibious d-days were a weekly occurrence in the Pacific of World War Two. Forget about it. I decided early that I would play along (aided by the fact that the military changed the lingo after D-Day, and called my event of interest “X-Day”).

The first stop if one is going to do promotions on the internet is Google’s keyword planner. Lesson number one: riding the coat-tails of D-Day is done in a limited window of opportunity. Practically all the search traffic is bunched up in late May and early June.

People don’t seem to have any problem remembering the date of June 6th, but they don’t have much interest outside of that particular time period.

So, a bunch of keywords were chosen, a slightly painful budget amount set for the week long campaign, unique ads created [“Bigger than D-Day!” “After D-Day…”, etc.], and the push was on.

You people are so weird!

Following are some of the top searches by which people found the X-Day: Japan project web site during D-Day Week, 2015. I grouped some together, and marked a few others for comment.

Questions like “was d day before the bombing” make me worry about the state of humanity. But they also motivate me to keep putting out what is hoped to be good “info-tainment” material, fact-based fiction which helps paint a clear picture of a major turn in history.

On the weird side I really wonder who wants or is even expecting to find “d day t shirts” or D-Day greeting cards. This is not a sorority fund raiser or family barbecue! Has anyone ever tried to have a group bar mitzvah for the occasion??

I really don’t even know where to start on “d day recipes”. Surely no one would try to knock up Higgins boat burgers and Pont du Hoc fries. Still, this is the internet…

The bane of anyone trying to do pay-per-click marketing is kids doing homework. They type in searches rich with specific topical keywords, because that’s exactly how their teachers wrote out the assignments. The students don’t know or care that it costs the advertiser a quarter (or several dollars) to click their sidebar ad. One can filter them out most of the time, but this kid was determined:
“what are the reasons of world war 2 in japan , its result and steps taken by govt. to deal with problem & loss of life & property”
That sounds like an all-semester project. And since it’s already June, I wish the youngster luck. [If the book were ready, he could get a full page about the invasion of Japan and the nuclear bombing of Hitoyoshi, but it’s just not done yet.]

Today I’m going to turn off most of the ads, saving up the budget for the next big push, around August 6th. In the mean time, I’ll have to check out that “Dino D-Day game”!
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