World War II: The Pacific Theater [TTC Video]

World War II: The Pacific Theater [TTC Video]
World War II: The Pacific Theater [TTC Video] by Craig L Symonds, PhD
Course No 8756 | MP4, AVC, 1900 kbps, 1280x720 | AAC, 96 kbps, 2 Ch | 12h 24m | 10.66GB

The Japanese attack on the United States Battle Fleet stationed at Pearl Harbor, on December 7, 1941, struck most Americans like a bolt from the blue. While the attack was a tactical success for Japanese Admiral Yamamoto, it was also one of the most reckless strategic decisions in the history of warfare, for it awakened a sleeping giant—the US military—and triggered some of the most harrowing and ferocious military actions the world had ever seen.

For the United States, the war started and ended in the Pacific Theater, with the war against Japan. From 1941 to 1945, Japan and the United States waged the largest naval war in history—and in the end, it changed the course of history and re-made the modern world.

World War II: The Pacific Theater takes you inside the sweeping story of the American fight against the Japanese. Taught by Professor Craig L. Symonds, a distinguished military historian at the US Naval War College, and former chairman of the History Department at the US Naval Academy, these 24 vivid lectures chronicle the global trajectory of the war in the Pacific: the epic battles, the military strategy and tactics, the leaders and commanders, the amphibious landings, the air attacks, and the submarine campaigns.

Professor Symonds transports you to the rolling seas of the Pacific, into the jungles of Guadalcanal and the Philippines, and across the black sands of Iwo Jima. You’ll meet fascinating figures such as General Douglas MacArthur, Admiral William Halsey, Admiral Chester Nimitz, the codebreakers at Station Hypo, and countless others, including Marines, soldiers, sailors, and airmen.

Produced by The Great Courses in partnership with HISTORY, World War II: The Pacific Theater gives you an inside look at the strategy of the war on both sides and explores the tactical advantages each nation held, from industrial dynamism to advanced technology to sheer willpower.

Witness the Strategy of War in Action

Besides giving a comprehensive survey of the Pacific War, this course offers a deep dive into military strategy. For instance, though Japan’s primary goal in the 1930s was the conquest of China, Admiral Yamamoto insisted on attacking the American fleet in Pearl Harbor. Why?

Professor Symonds reveals Japan’s complex calculus: how the country needed a supply line of oil from the South Pacific to fuel a war in China, how the United States controlled the Philippines, and why it therefore seemed to make sense to attack the US base in Hawaii.

Yamamoto believed that preemptively taking out a significant portion of the American fleet would cripple the United States and allow Japan free reign of the ocean. Although the “day of infamy” was tactically successful, America maintained its handful of aircraft carriers, which six months later allowed the US Navy to alter the direction of the Pacific War with a furious 10-minute onslaught during the Battle of Midway.

World War II in the Pacific was the largest naval war in history, and throughout this course, Professor Symonds leads you through the evolving nature of naval warfare. Among other topics, Professor Symonds unpacks:

  • The crucial importance of aircraft carriers;
  • The division of command in the Pacific between General MacArthur and Admiral Nimitz;
  • The relationship among the Navy, the Marines, the Army, and the Air Force;
  • The grinding campaign in Guadalcanal and the island-hopping campaign in the Central Pacific;
  • The role of codebreakers stationed in Hawaii—and the limits of their intel; and
  • The particular roles of strategic air power and submarine warfare.

Delve into Battles from Pearl Harbor to Okinawa

The Pacific Theater includes some of the most famous (and occasionally infamous) names in modern warfare, inspiring legions of Hollywood films and haunting the halls of military colleges for generations. Strap on your packs and lace up your boots, and travel with Professor Symonds back to some of the most epic battles in history:

  • The Philippines. Reflect on General MacArthur’s missteps early in the war that culminated in the Bataan Death March and MacArthur’s escape to Australia. Then witness his triumphant return three years later.
  • Midway. Find out why the Japanese were so interested in a tiny American base in the middle of the ocean. This story of codebreaking, a surprise attack, and 10 minutes that changed the course of the war is truly breathtaking.
  • Guadalcanal. Delve into the thick jungle and bitter fighting for this critical island outpost in the Solomon Islands.
  • Tarawa. Find out why a little bad luck with the tides turned this battle into one of the most harrowing and costly assaults in the history of the US Marine Corps.
  • Iwo Jima. Look beyond the iconic photograph of Marines hoisting the American flag on Mount Suribachi and examine the tragic consequences of this important battle.
  • Okinawa. See how this bloody battle—known as Operation Iceberg—crushed any prospect for a Japanese victory and watch as kamikaze fighters nonetheless continued to hurl themselves at American ships.

A Dynamic Story

One of the most fascinating aspects of this course is how it reveals the way supply chains and industrial output affected the trajectory of the war. For example, Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor had more to do with supplies of oil and rubber from South Asia than with any interest in conquering American territory. As these lectures show, only a few years later, the lack of supplies wrecked Japan’s ability to wage war effectively.

Meanwhile, American manufacturing output was truly staggering: millions of tons of new shipping, from destroyers and tank landing ships to cargo ships and aircraft carriers. Thanks to American industry, the military was able to resupply the Navy and the Marines as they hopped from island to island, and battle to battle.

The story of the Pacific Theater is a dizzying sequence of raids and battles, invasions and onslaughts, all aided by the deadly tools of war. Professor Symonds clarifies the war and offers a remarkable military history of the conflict. World War II: The Pacific Theater is an absolute must for military buffs, history enthusiasts, and anyone wishing to deepen their knowledge of world history. Settle in for a thrilling ride.

World War II: The Pacific Theater [TTC Video]