Last week marked the 75th anniversary of the end of the Battle of Iwo Jima. The Japanese intended to make the American cost of taking the island so severe they would reconsider invading the Japanese home islands. On this point, the Japanese condemned themselves by their very success. The shadow of Iwo Jima is arguably a mushroom cloud.
America and NATO’s interests in the Arctic—which include territorial integrity, sovereignty, resource exploration and development, trade, and freedom of navigation—are under threat because of Russia’s actions.
If Guadalcanal foreshadowed the ultimate Allied victory, it also proved how difficult that triumph would be. It took six long, grueling months to oust Japan from the island, making clear to all ranks that every inch of the road to Tokyo would be bought with grit and determination—and paid for in blood.
The First Marine Division’s paragon of virtue, Chesty Puller, upheld the standards of just warfighting and respect, if not love, of the enemy. We pray his progeny leading the defense of our nation today will do the same.