World Battlefronts: BATTLE OF THE PACIFIC: Long Step Nearer

Less than two weeks after the end of the Iwo Jima battle the U.S. Navy had assembled the greatest invasion armada ever to operate in the Pacific: 1,400 ships and up to 100,000 soldiers and marines of the new Tenth Army. When it was all ready, they poured this power into Japan's front yard.

Northward in the Ryukyus, the ladder of islands stretching from Formosa to Japan, steamed Admiral Raymond A. Spruance's Fifth Fleet, working in small units, striking here, there, everywhere. In the southern Ryukyus the British Pacific Fleet, working with U.S. Pacific forces for the first time, struck at...

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