It is hard to believe ten years have passed since the February 1995 Naval History, when we commemorated the 50th anniversary of what Retired Marine Corps Colonel Joe Alexander called “the amphibious pinnacle” of World War II. In his article, “The Americans Will Surely Come,” the prize-winning historian detailed how Japanese General Tadamichi Kuribayashi orchestrated the elaborate defenses of Iwo Jima, scene of the bloodiest battle in the history of the U.S. Marine Corps. Later that year, we received a manuscript from a young graduate student in North Carolina, who wove exhaustive research data into a sobering narrative description of exactly how U.S. intelligence grossly underestimated Kuribayashi’s handiwork and what it cost in casualties. The piece was too late for the 50th, but we purchased it anyway and squirreled it in our article bank for a future anniversary of the Iwo Jima operation.
On Our Scope
By Fred L. Schultz, Editor-in-Chief