By Martin Clemens
This notable memoir via the near-mythic British district officer and coastwatcher who assisted in shaping the 1st nice Allied counteroffensive within the Pacific warfare is a compelling actual experience tale according to a magazine Martin Clemens saved in the course of the warfare. even as, it may good be the final serious resource of research of the Solomons crusade. good-looking, articulate, and brave, the Scottish-born, Cambridge-educated Clemens controlled to outlive years in the back of eastern traces in a single of the main unfriendly climates and terrains on the planet. After many partisan and secret agent missions, in 1942 he emerged from the jungle and built-in his Melanesian commando strength into the guts of the first Marine Division's operations, incomes and the unfettered admiration of now-legendary Marine officials like Vandegrift, Thomas, Twining, Edson, and Pate. His designated point of view, fleshed out from targeted diary entries, presents a revealing - now not consistently flattering - portrait of the Solomons crusade and the Marines who directed it.
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Extra info for Alone on Guadalcanal: A Coastwatcher's Story
Goettge, USMC, the division intelligence officer; and Lt. Col. Edward W. Snedeker, USMC, the division communications officer. The Marines found Ghormley and his staff appalled by the implications of King’s message. Vandegrift’s staff judged the implied mission—that the 1st Marine Division would land somewhere against the enemy in five weeks’ time. The division’s first convoy had barely reached New Zealand, and other units were still at sea. Moreover, all the ships had been loaded for an administrative landing, not an amphibious assault, and in any case were not numerous enough to carry all the division’s personnel, weapons, and equipment.
Hill), and the 2d Battalion, 5th Marines (Lt. Col. Harold E. Rosecrans). Since Admiral Turner would not release the two remaining battalions of the 2d Marines (a regiment borrowed from the 2d Marine Division) to the 1st Marine Division, Vandegrift had only five infantry battalions to land on Red Beach, the landing site east of the Lunga River. 10 The Australian and British islanders of Ferdinand and other units of the AIB might have helped, but accident of timing and personality deprived Vandegrift of the best available Allied advisors.
It would have saved all of us a great deal of trouble if we had been. By contrast, the Solomon Islander had little respect for the Japanese. Their pearl fishermen used to steal, between the wars, the shells off his family reefs before they had properly matured, thereby not only filching his means of livelihood but destroying it for years to come. Here they were, in force, and the British were running before them. This was baffling and unsettling, and many were the natives who, now that anxious times were upon us, begged me to tell them what was to happen.