Joseph Alexander was a retired colonel of the U.S. Marine Corps, with 29 years� service as an assault amphibian officer. He commanded a company in Vietnam, served five years at sea with amphibious task forces, and graduated with distinction from the Naval War College. Prior to retirement he served as chief of staff of the 3d Marine Division in the western Pacific.

Alexander wrote six books, including Utmost Savagery: The Three Days of Tarawa; The Battle History of the U.S. Marines; and Edson�s Raiders: The 1st Marine Raider Battalion in World War II. He was Naval Institute Author of the Year in 1996 and Naval History Author of the Year in 2010. He served as scriptwriter and on-screen authority for 28 military documentaries for cable television networks. He was the principal historian and writer on the exhibit design team for the construction and expansion of the National Museum of the Marine Corps.

Articles by Joseph Alexander

From Ironclads to Infantry

By Captain William T. Alexander, U.S. Naval Reserve (Retired), and Colonel Joseph H. Alexander, U.S. Marine Corps (Retired)
June 1991
The ironclad duel between the Monitor and Virginia was young Robert Chester Foute’s baptism of fire. The

Bloody Tarawa

By Colonel Joseph H. Alexander, U.S. Marine Corps (Retired)
December 1993
A 50th anniversary tribute to those who fought and fell in the assault on the tiny, reef-skirted atoll,

David Shoup Rock of Tarawa

By Colonel Joseph H. Alexander, U.S. Marine Corps (Retired)
December 1995
The bloody assault on Tarawa changed the face of amphibious warfare. One Marine commander held especially steady in the fray.
Courtesy of HBO

Real Marines Behind HBO's The Pacific

By Colonel Jon T. Hoffman, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve (Retired), Lieutenant Colonel Brendan Greeley Jr., U.S. Marine Corps (Retired) and Colonel Joseph H. Alexander, U.S. Marine Corps (Retired)
April 2010
A look at the biographical information of the real people behind the main characters featured in the HBO miniseries "The Pacific.",",","Y
National Archives

The 'Old Breed' Girds for Battle

By Colonel Joseph H. Alexander, U.S. Marine Corps (Retired)
April 2010
Colonel Joseph H. Alexander, U.S. Marine Corps (Retired) provides a history of the 1st Marine Division, starting with their inception during World War II in the Pacific Theater.
Tarawa Waterhouse

A Bloody Proving Ground

By Colonel Joseph H. Alexander, U.S. Marine Corps (Retired)
December 2008
The Marine Corps amphibious doctrine was put to the test when the Pacific Fleet opened a second front in the war against Japan.
National Archives

Across the Reef: The Assault on Betio

By Colonel Joseph H. Alexander, U.S. Marine Corps (Retired)
December 2008
During 76 hours of vicious fighting the 2d Marine Division wrested control of Tarawas Betio Island from an enemy that fought virtually to the last man.

Books by Joseph Alexander