Former Marine and Pacific War veteran Robert Leckie tells the story of the invasion of Okinawa, the closing battle of World War II. Leckie is a skilled military historian, mixing battle strategy and analysis with portraits of the men who fought on both sides to give the reader a complete account of the invasion. Lasting 83 days and surpassing D-Day in both troops and material used, the Battle of Okinawa was a decisive victory for the Allies, and a huge blow to Japan. In this stirring and readable account, Leckie provides a complete picture of the battle and its context in the larger war.
Military historian Leckie covers the fierce battle between American and Japanese troops for the island of Okinawa throughout the spring of 1945.
On this 50th anniversary of the battle of Okinawa (April to June 1945), we can expect an avalanche of titles about this last major battle of World War II. Okinawa was an epic amphibious-air-sea-land battle the likes of which may never be seen again. The conflict raged for 83 days; 13,000 Americans and 100,000 Japanese perished. Kamikazes sank 34 and damaged 361 U.S. vessels. Both Astor and Leckie are experienced military historians who tell their stories in the words of participants. Astor interviewed numerous veterans and compiled a masterful account of the battle as seen through the eyes of both American and Japanese survivors. He explores the history, training, and morale of the army and marine divisions and demonstrates why each was bound to succeed or fail. On the other hand, Leckie has written a “Monarch Notes” version of the battle that tells us nothing new.
For the best history of the Okinawa campaign, readers should consider James and William Belote's (1970).
Stanley Itkin, Hillside P.L., New Hyde Park, N.Y.