This book details for the first time in English the Dutch prewar strategy, their efforts to counter Japanese espionage and their sizable though largely forgotten military contribution in the early months of the Pacific War.
Author: Tom Womack
Though few realize it, the Netherlands East Indies were the object of Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor in December 1941. Likewise, their invasions of Guam, Wake Island and the Philippines were mainly diversionary operations to safeguard their main assault on Dutch and British colonies. Since the end of World War I, Japan had coveted the vast East Indies oil reserves, and the colony had feared invasion since Germany overran Holland in May 1940. Isolated politically the weakly defended archipelago was a tempting prize. The East Indies government initially maintained a strict policy of neutrality while desperately working to build up its military strength. As Japanese actions pushed the region toward war, the Dutch reluctantly embraced closer ties with America and Britain. For a brief period, the East Indies were key players in Pacific War strategy. This book details for the first time in English the Dutch prewar strategy, their efforts to counter Japanese espionage and their sizable though largely forgotten military contribution in the early months of the Pacific War.
385 Campaign 1941–1942 website, dutcheastindies.webs.com, accessed 20 November 2012; Peter Post, ... Dutch population delusions: Tom Womack, The Allied Defense of the Malay Barrier 1941–1942 (Jefferson, NC: McFarland Publishers, 2016), ...
Author: Richard B. Frank
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
An eye-opening, pathbreaking account of the onset of the Asia-Pacific War, by the acclaimed author of Downfall and Guadalcanal. In 1937, the swath of the globe east from India to the Pacific Ocean enclosed half the world’s population, all save a fraction enduring under some form of colonialism. Japan’s onslaught into China that year unleashed a tidal wave of events that fundamentally transformed this region and killed about twenty-five million people. From just two nation states with real sovereignty, Thailand and Japan, and two with compromised sovereignty, China and Mongolia, the region today encompasses at least nineteen major sovereign nations. This extraordinary World War II narrative vividly describes in exquisite detail the battles across this entire region and links those struggles on many levels with their profound twenty-first-century legacies. Beginning with China’s long-neglected years of heroic, costly resistance, Tower of Skulls explodes outward to campaigns including Singapore, the Philippines, the Netherlands East Indies, India, and Burma, as well as across the Pacific to Pearl Harbor. These pages cast penetrating light on how struggles in Europe and Asia merged into a tightly entwined global war. They feature not just battles, but also the sweeping political, economic, and social effects of the war, and are graced with a rich tapestry of individual characters from top-tier political and military figures down to ordinary servicemen, as well as the accounts of civilians of all races and ages. In this first volume of a trilogy, award-winning historian Richard B. Frank draws on rich archival research and recently discovered documentary evidence to tell an epic story that gave birth to the world we live in now.
... Office of the National Defense College of Japan, The Operations of the Navy in the Dutch East Indies and the Bay of Bengal, Leiden University Press, Leiden (2018) Womack, Tom, The Allied Defense of the Malay Barrier, 1941–1942, ...
Author: Mark Stille
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941 was quickly followed by a rapid invasion of Malaya, a plan based entirely on the decisive use of its airpower. While the British was inadequately prepared, they likewise relied on the RAF to defend their colony. The campaign was a short match between Japanese airpower at its peak and an outgunned colonial air force, and its results were stunning. The subsequent Dutch East Indies campaign was even more dependent on airpower, with Japan having to seize a string of island airfields to support their leapfrog advance. Facing the Japanese was a mixed bag of Allied air units, including the Dutch East Indies Air Squadron and the US Far East Air Force. The RAF fell back to airfields on Sumatra in the last stages of the Malaya campaign, and was involved in the last stages of the campaign to defend the Dutch colony. For the first time, this study explores these campaigns from an airpower perspective, explaining how and why the Japanese were so devastatingly effective.
... Oxford (2014) Dull, Paul S., A Battle History of the Imperial Japanese Navy (1941–1945) Naval Institute Press, ... Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, Maryland (1982) Womack, Tom, The Allied Defense of the Malay Barrier 1941–1942, ...
Author: Mark Stille
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
The battle of the Java Sea, fought in February 1942, was the first major surface engagement of the Pacific War and one of the few naval battles of the entire war fought to a decisive victory. It was the culminating point of the Japanese drive to occupy the Netherlands East Indies (NEI) and, to defend the territory, the Allies assembled a striking force comprised of Dutch, American, British and even an Australian ship, all under the command of a resolute Dutch admiral. On 27 February 1942, the Allied striking force set course to intercept the Japanese invasion force in the Java Sea. In one of the few such times during the whole of World War II a protracted surface engagement was fought unmolested by airpower. For over seven hours, the Allied force attempted to attack the Japanese invasion force, finally breaking off in the early evening. Some three hours later, the Allied force, now reduced to just four remaining cruisers and two destroyers, attempted another attack on the invasion convoy during which Japanese torpedoes scored heavily, sinking two Dutch cruisers and bringing the battle to a conclusion. Over the next two days, as the Allies attempted to flee, five more ships were sunk. From that point on, Allied naval power was eliminated from Southeast Asia. In this illustrated title, Mark Stille tells the full story of the battle of the Java Sea, explaining how and why the Japanese achieved such a resounding victory, and delving into the tremendous impact of the battle on the course of the Pacific War.
Womack, T. The Allied Defense of the Malay Barrier, 1941–1942. Jefferson, NC: McFarland. Woodhead, H.G.W., ed. The China Year Book, 1939. Shanghai: North-China Daily News and Herald, 1939. Wu Dongzhi 吴东之.
Author: Vincent K.L. Chang
Category: Political Science
This book restores and astutely unpacks a long-neglected yet pivotal episode of modern Dutch-Chinese ties. Drawing on extensive multilingual archives, it details how the events of the 20th century profoundly reshaped this age-old relationship and continue to define it today.
With slight modifications , the Chiefs approved the resolution : ( a ) To hold the Malay Barrier the basic defensive position ... positions for the theatre , and Burma as essential to the support of China , and to the defense of India .
Author: Maurice Matloff
Category: Military planning
A description of wartime national planning and military strategy as they affected the missions and dispositions of the U.S. Army in the defensive phase of coalition warfare.
Those Allied ships remaining on the south coast of Java at Tjilatjap were sent away by Admiral Helfrich on March 1. ... Not a single Japanese warship had been sunk in the defense of the Malay barrier, which was now decisively broken.
Author: Ian W. Toll
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
Winner of the Northern California Book Award for Nonfiction "Both a serious work of history…and a marvelously readable dramatic narrative." —San Francisco Chronicle On the first Sunday in December 1941, an armada of Japanese warplanes appeared suddenly over Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, and devastated the U.S. Pacific Fleet. Six months later, in a sea fight north of the tiny atoll of Midway, four Japanese aircraft carriers were sent into the abyss, a blow that destroyed the offensive power of their fleet. Pacific Crucible—through a dramatic narrative relying predominantly on primary sources and eyewitness accounts of heroism and sacrifice from both navies—tells the epic tale of these first searing months of the Pacific war, when the U.S. Navy shook off the worst defeat in American military history to seize the strategic initiative.
The other countries involved will be included insomuch as they help to fill out the story of the United States and its first coalition effort in World War II. The story of the ABDACOM coalition is one of perseverance, creative planning, and ...
Author: Jeffrey C. Nelson
On December 7, 1941 the Japanese Empire launched a surprise attack on the United States at the Pearl Harbor naval base in the territory of Hawaii. The following day President Franklin D. Roosevelt declared war on Japan, and America was suddenly an active participant in a global war that had already been underway for over five years. World War II pitted the Axis (Japan, Germany, and Italy) against a coalition of allied nations that were united primarily by fear of Axis totalitarianism. Typically referred to as the Allies, the alliance's most powerful participants included the United States, the Soviet Union, and Great Britain. However, many other nations were involved on the Allied side. Smaller European countries such as Holland, Belgium, and Poland fought with armed forces and governments in exile located in London after their homelands had been overrun by the Germans in 1939 and 1940. China had been at war with Japan since 1937. After the United States entered the war, allied action resulted in the creation of different, localized military coalitions between 1941 and 1945. These coalitions presented Allied leaders with unique problems created by the political, geographic, military and logistical issues of fighting war on a global scale. The earliest coalition in which the United States was involved was known by the acronym ABDACOM, short for the American, British, Dutch, Australian Command. ABDACOM's mission was the defense of the Malay Barrier, which stretched from the Malay Peninsula through the Dutch East Indies to New Guinea, and the protection of the Southwest Pacific Area from Japanese invasion. In its brief two-month existence the ADBA coalition in the Southwest Pacific Area failed to prevent the Japanese from taking the Malay Barrier, Singapore, Burma and the islands between Java and the Philippines. This was due not to one overriding problem, but to a combination of planning, command, and logistical problems, compounded by the distance of Allied production and training centers from the front lines. These problems can be traced from the late 1930s to the dissolution of ABDACOM at the end of February 1942. Historians have often overlooked the underlying causes of the United States' first foray into coalition warfare in World War II. To better understand why the Allied forces succumbed to the Japanese onslaught so quickly, one must look at political, military and economic relations between the United States and its allies prior to the onset of hostilities in 1941. Domestic political realities combined with international diplomatic differences kept the United States from openly preparing for coalition action until the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. The ensuing military coalition suffered from numerous deficiencies in command structure and logistics. Though pre-war planning existed within each of the Allied governments, the lack of cooperative action gave the Japanese military an insurmountable military advantage over the members of the ABDA coalition. Given the limited scope of this paper the focus will be on American participation in ABDACOM. The other countries involved will be included insomuch as they help to fill out the story of the United States and its first coalition effort in World War II. The story of the ABDACOM coalition is one of perseverance, creative planning, and deep stoicism in the face of overwhelming odds. The short life of the coalition gave planners in Washington, D.C. and London time to sort out potential conflicts between the Allies.
For God , Queen and Country : The Allied Defense of the Malay Barrier , December 1941– March 1942. Unpublished manuscript . Dallas , Texas , 2002 . Young , Donald J. First 24 Hours of War in the Pacific .
Author: Tom Womack
December 7, 1941, opened up a new theater of war in the Pacific and a new threat for what was then the Netherlands East Indies. The Dutch, with their Naval Air Force or Marine Luchtvaart Dienst (MLD), made a significant--and often overlooked--contribution to the Allied effort. With their 175 aircraft, the MLD in Southeast Asia outnumbered American and British naval air reconnaissance forces combined. Three months of intense fighting left the Dutch bereft of thousands of naval personnel and over 80 percent of their aircraft. This work details the actions of MLD during the Japanese invasion of the Netherlands East Indies. Beginning with a look at the origins of the MLD, it provides an overview of the force, including an analysis of its aircraft, equipment, personnel and training. Operations of the United States Navy and Royal Air Force seaplane units are included in order to provide a thorough history of the campaign. Final chapters cover the MLD's ill-fated attempts at evacuation of the island battleground and offer an overall review of the MLD's performance. Appendices contain such information as Allied and Japanese aircraft specifications, squadron tables of organization, and MLD bases and operational areas. The result is by far the most comprehensive English-language account of the Allied naval air war in the Netherlands East Indies.
American Pursuit Pilots in the Defense of Java, 1941-1942 William H. Bartsch ... 5th Bomber Command headquarters at, 58; Japanese planes reported over, 254 Malay Barrier: aerial defense of doubted, 104; in allied defense planning, ...
Author: William H. Bartsch
Publisher: Texas A&M University Press
In December 1941, the War Department sent two transports and a freighter carrying 103 P-40 fighters and their pilots to the Philipines to bolster Gen. Douglas MacArthur’s Far East Air Force. They were then diverted to Australia, with new orders to ferry the P-40s to the Philippines from Australia through the Dutch East Indies. But on the same day as the second transport reached its destination on January 12, 1942, the first of the key refueling stops in the East Indies fell to rapidly advancing Japanese forces, resulting in a break in their ferry route and another change in their orders. This time the pilots would fly their aircraft to Java to participate in the desperate Allied defense of that ultimate Japanese objective. Except for the pilots from the Philippines, almost all of the other pilots eventually assigned to the five provisional pursuit squadrons ordered to Java were recent graduates of flying school with just a few hours on the P-40. Only forty-three of them made it to their assigned destination; the rest suffered accidents in Australia, were shot down over Bali and Darwin, or were lost in the sinking of the USS Langley as it carried thirty-two of them to Java. Even those who did reach the secret field on Java wondered if they had been sacrificed for no purpose. As the Japanese air assault intensified daily, the Allied defense collapsed. Only eleven Japanese aircraft fell to the P-40s. Author William H. Bartsch has pored through personal diaries and memoirs of the participants, cross-checking these primary sources against Japanese aerial combat records of the period and supplementing them with official records and other American, Dutch, and Australian accounts. Bartsch’s thorough and meticulous research yields a narrative that situates the Java pursuit pilots’ experiences within the context of the overall strategic situation in the early days of the Pacific theater.