Subject: History
Topic: HISTORY DISCUSSIONS
Language: English (U.S.)
Pages: 2
Instructions
After Pearl Harbor, Japan went on a rampage throughout the Pacific. By the end of the summer, much of their Carrier Fleet was in ruins and the United States had gone on the offensive in the Solomon Islands. Explain this rapid turnaround in fortunes?

History Discussions

Part 1: POINT LUCK

After the attack on Pearl Harbor, the Japanese Empire planned another attack that would lessen the military and strategic power of the United States in the Pacific. This would give the Japanese ample time, power and resources to continue establishing and expanding its Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere. This attack was known as the Battle of the Midway, and the Japanese hoped to trap the American aircraft carriers and occupy Midway that would be used as a defensive perimeter. The attack was also part of preparations to attack other American strongholds such as Hawaii, Samoa, and Fiji.

However, the battle did not go as planned and led to the irreparable damage of the Japanese navy and air fleet. All of the Japanese aircraft carriers, including some that had been utilized in the attack on Pearl Harbor, where destroyed while the U.S. only lost a destroyer and the Yorktown carrier. The planned attack failed miserably because the Japanese underestimated America’s reaction to the attack. The Americans had also already intercepted Japanese intelligence and broke the codes regarding where the attack would take place, as well as the how and the when (Davidson, 1996). This battle was deemed as the turning point in the war in the Pacific. The Japanese were unable to replace their sunken fleet quickly enough and did not have the capacity to cope with the ever-increasing casualties. On the other hand, America used her massive industrial capability to replace crewmembers and war itinerary very quickly.

Part2: ROMMEL IN THE DESERT

Erwin Eugen Rommel was an excellent German field marshal during World War II. The field marshal led the German Afrika Korps into North Africa in 1940 to help the Italian forces to avoid a complete Axis defeat. The Allied forces eventually managed to encircle the Axis forces in Tunisia and forced them to surrender.

The North Africa Campaign seemed to be a waste of resources that would have proved useful in Germany’s fight against the Soviet Union. The campaign provided some relief for the Soviet army in the Eastern front by opening up another front to divert the Germans’ attention from the war against the Soviets. The Axis army sent to North Africa was destroyed meaning that there was a decrease in reinforcements for the German army fighting in the Eastern front. The loss in the campaign by the axis powers led to the Italian campaign. This led to the downfall of the fascist government in Italy and the loss of a considerable ally for Germany (Atkinson, 2004).

Part 3: STALINGRAD

Stalingrad is considered by many to be the turning point of the Second World War in Europe. The defeat of the Nazis by the Russians allowed people to begin to question the all-powerful German army. The German army was no longer an invincible force, but one that could be overpowered using strategy, military awareness, and a bit of luck. The Russians begin to believe in themselves at Stalingrad because of the symbolic nature of this place to the Russian people (Rees, 2010).

The success at Stalingrad was made possible when Stalin began to realize he was not always the military genius he claimed to be. He gave two of his generals the space and the time to plan for Operation Uranus that trapped Germany’s Sixth Army in Stalingrad. The sixth army fell to the Russians in January 1943 after more than two months of endless fighting. Stalingrad became thus became the turning point for the war for political, psychological, and military reasons.

References

Atkinson, R. (2004). An army at dawn: the war in North Africa, 1942-1943.  

Davidson, J.R. (1996). The unsinkable fleet: the politics of U.S. navy expansion in World War II. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press.

Rees, L. (2010). What was the turning point of World War II? Retrieved on 10/11/2015 from http://www.historynet.com/what-was-the-turning-point-of-world-war-ii.htm/2