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The United States has been developing space for many years, and satellites provide the US military with an unparalleled advantage over adversaries. Constellations of both military and civilian satellites provide protection and support for military operations, deliver ballistic missile early warning, supply reliable, secure and jam-proof communications, gather audio-visual amd electronic intelligence, predict weather patterns, guide navigation, target weapons, and perform a host of other missions. These systems are critical to America's status as a world power, and potential threats to them are carefully assessed by US military planners. In January 2001, a commission led by Donald Rumsfeld warned of the growing threat to US space assets from so-called "rogue states," who (with varying degrees of difficulty) might build and deploy "space mines", launch ballistic anti-satellite weapons, deliberately increase orbital debris or detonate high-altitude nuclear explosions. The defensive options currently available to the US include improving satellite defenses (making them more robust and maneuverable, and improving threat detection) and the controversial placing of weapons in space (in "sentinel satellites") to protect military and civilian hardware. Since the 1950s research and development has been applied to space weaponry with mixed results, and not only by the USA. This book explains the origin and development of systems used to defend the United States from past, present and future threats, and to support military operations.
Osprey's study of the United States' first offensive response to the Pearl Harbor attacks of World War II (1939-1945). In early 1942, the strategic situation was bleak for the United States. She had been in continual retreat since Pearl Harbor, surrendering major areas such as the Philippines, and was preparing for the worst in Hawaii and on the West Coast. The Japanese, on the other hand, had secured a well-defended perimeter, and were set for further expansion. Something needed to happen quickly and be of considerable impact. The April 1942 Doolittle Raid on Japan was a way to achieve this. This book examines the planning, execution, and aftermath of this innovative, daring and risky attack, which would show that the Japanese navy and air forces were anything but invincible.
The United States had demonstrated its military superiority worldwide with its lightning victory over Iraq in 1991. As the only superpower in the world, few would argue that Washington could not prevail in a conventional conflict. Humanitarian missions, however, were another story. Although the United States had experience in a few humanitarian missions, it had just concluded operations in northern Iraq, and was soon to support the United Nations program to help the people in a failed state - Somalia. Somalia was falling apart; it had ceased to exist as a country. Warring tribes had reduced it into an area controlled by warlords. Clan and internecine warfighting had caused major disruption in Somali life. Starvation was a weapon used by the clans. Humanitarian aid and relief arrived but, without security, this support provided little help to the people. On 15 August 1992, President George H.W. Bush ordered military units to airlift supplies into Kenya under Operation Provide Relief. These supplies would enter Somalia with international relief organizations. Still, clans stole the aid for themselves, harassed international relief agencies, extorted money, and allowed starvation to continue. By 8 December, Bush ordered Marines, the US Army's 10th Mountain Division, and Special Forces into Somalia to help UN forces bring order. Some 13,000 American military personnel became part of a security force of 38,000 from UN countries. This massive force helped stabilize Somalia, but the warring factions waited for an opportunity to reassert themselves. By October 1993, the UN security force had shrunk to 16,000, with 4,000 Americans. Two Somali warlords - Muhamed Farrah Aideed and Ali Mahdi Mohamed - had been fighting over control of the capital and main port of Mogadishu. A raid on 3 October, TF Ranger's seventh, aimed at capturing high-ranking Aideed aides initially succeeded with a surprise assault in Mogadishu. While transferring the prisoners to a convoy, Aideed supporters shot down two Army Blackhawk helicopters. These actions resulted in heavy firefights throughout the route of evacuation and the crash sites. The Rangers and others, including two Special Forces snipers who held the second crash site alone, attempted to secure and rescue the downed helicopter crews. The Americans could call on helicopter gunships and had heavy firepower, but against an enemy difficult to identify, in an urban setting, outnumbered, and with darkness approaching, the situation looked grim. The Rangers and Special Forces (Delta Force) fought all night. The10th Mountain Division, Malaysian, and Pakistani forces rescued the Rangers at the first crash site the next day. At the second crash site, Aideed's forces had overwhelmed the area. The two Special Forces snipers died (they received the Congressional Medal of Honor posthumously). In the end, TF Ranger lost 16 killed and 83 wounded. One person died from the relief column. Aideed's force lost 500-1,000 killed and unknown numbers of wounded.
In this 200th Campaign series title Clayton Chun examines the final stages of World War II (1939-1945) as the Allies debated how to bring about the surrender of Japan. Chun not only describes the actual events but also analyzes the possible operations to capture the Japanese mainland which were never implemented. He details Operation Downfall (the planned invasion of the Japanese home islands) and its two-phased approach. Firstly Operation Olympic would see the invasion of Kyushu, followed by Operation Coronet which would see the invasion of the area around Tokyo.Chun goes on to examine exactly why these plans were never implemented, including Allied fears that both military and civilian casualties would be terrible and would result in a long, drawn out war of attrition. He then goes on to examine the horrific alternative to military invasion - the attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki with nuclear weapons - which made the Allied threat of "prompt and utter destruction" a reality. With a series of illustrations, including detailed diagrams of the atomic bombs, a depiction of the different stages of the explosions and maps of the original invasion plans, this book provides a unique perspective of a key event in world history.
On April 30, 1975, the final curtain of America's long involvement in the Vietnam War fell. North Vietnamese forces captured Saigon while thousands of South Vietnamese refugees attempted to flee on foot, boat, and aircraft. The American public believed that the events in Southeast Asia had finally come to a bitter end. Less than two weeks later, President Gerald Ford ordered air, naval, and Marine forces to conduct combat operations in waters off Cambodia. On May 12, communist Cambodian Khmer Rouge elements seized the S.S. Mayaguez, an American merchant ship, and its crew in international waters. This act of piracy created an incident where U.S. Marine Corps elements attempted to rescue the Mayaguez, one of the most controversial raids in recent history. This book will track every development in the mission , an eventual success that demonstrated American resolve to use military forces in foreign policy issues after the Vietnam debacle.From the Trade Paperback edition.
The loss of the Phillipines in 1942 was the worst defeat in American military history. General Douglas MacArthur, the 'Lion of Luzon', was evacuated by order of the President just before the fall, but he vowed to return, and in August 1944 he kept his word when he led the largest amphibious assault of the Pacific War to date on the island of Leyte. This is the full story of that fateful battle, one of the most ferocious campaigns of World War II and one of huge strategic and symbolic significance. Preceding it had been the largest naval battle ever fought: the battle of Leyte Gulf, in which the Imperial Japanese Navy was decisively crushed. This paved the way for four divisions of Lieutenant-General Krueger's Sixth Army to spear-head the assault. In the face of stubborn Japanese resistance, including the first systematic use of kamikaze attacks, the US forces ground slowly forwards before another amphibious assault took the vital position of Ormoc in the last decisive battle of the campaign. Based on extensive research in the US Army's Military History Institute, along with other archival and veteran sources, this important study sheds new light on the operation that saw the US finally return to the Phillipines and in doing so placed another nail firmly in the coffin of the Japanese Empire.
The Philippine Islands were one of two major US bases in the Pacific, the other being Pearl Harbor. The Japanese considered the capture of the Philippines crucial for its efforts to control resource-laden Southeast Asia. As opposed to its attack on Pearl Harbor, the Japanese intention was to invade and occupy the Philippines in a campaign that was to last five months. The flamboyant Douglas MacArthur, a hero of World War I and former Chief of Staff led the defense of the Philippines when the Japanese attacked on 8 December 1941. Despite warnings about the Pearl Harbor attack, the Japanese air forces caught MacArthur's aircraft on the ground resulting in half of his modern bomber and fighter aircraft destroyed. Army Air Forces B-17s attempted to bomb Formosa, but Japanese fighters eliminated them and a Japanese full-scale invasion followed days later.Japanese forces landed in northern Luzon from Formosa. B-17s and naval attacks tried in vain to stop the invasion, but failed. Poorly trained and equipped Philippine Army units could not halt the Japanese and the American and Filipino forces withdrew, even though they outnumbered the initial Japanese forces. Japanese Army units broke through several defensive lines as they drove on to Manila, which was abandoned by the Americans as Macarthur withdrew to Bataan. The Japanese gradually reduced this pocket until the only American position was Corregidor Island. MacArthur left for Australia, as a direct order from President Franklin Roosevelt and was awarded the Medal of Honor, one of the more controversial aspects of the campaign. With little hope of survival, Corregidor fell, with organized resistance ending on 9 May 1942.Although a defeat, the American and Filipino defensive efforts upset the Japanese plan for a swift victory and provided time for Australia and the United States to build up their defenses. It also gave hope to the American public that Americans could stand up to Japan, with the "Battling Bastards of Bataan" providing a source of inspiration. Unfortunately, for the survivors of the campaign, it meant a grueling three years of captivity for some. The Bataan Death March was one of the most infamous events in World War II, with Japanese forces responsible for the deaths of about 600 Americans and between 5,000-10,000 Filipino soldiers dying in the march, some summarily executed by beheading.
The Plains Indian War was one of the most controversial conflicts in American military history, as the US Army faced a tough opponent that challenged it for decades following the end of the Civil War. The Army leadership endured a severe lack of resources, political constraints, an indifferent public, tough environmental conditions, and other problems of the frontier. Army officers and men had to adapt to these constraints, and this period also proved to be a trial of the ability and endurance of the common soldier. This title details the organization, development, training, tactics and command structures of the US Army during its subjugation of the Plains Indian tribes.