The Press: The Not-So-Silent Service

For nearly two war years U.S. newsmen covering the Pacific Fleet had chafed at red tape, slow censorship, slow transmission of dispatches. Now things changed. Twenty writers, five photographers, two artists and a newsreelman flew over, cruised near or landed with combat troops on the Gilbert Islands.

In the weeks before the Gilberts invasion CINCPAC Chester W. Nimitz issued a directive ordering fleet, force and unit commanders to extend fullest cooperation to correspondents everywhere. His brusque public-relations officer, Commander Waldo Drake (onetime Los Angeles Timesman), picked the correspondents to be taken along, decided which should go in planes, on carriers, in landing...

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