Guadalcanal: First to Fight —Part II

A thorough accounting of this critical time during WWII in the Pacific Theater.

Fix Bayonets!

Not long after coming ashore, allied troops encountered a severe strain of dysentery; by mid-August one in five Marines was so inflicted.  Next up for the Marines: malaria.

On the evening of 12 August, Lieutenant Colonel Frank Goettge, serving as the Division Intelligence Officer, led a 25-man patrol west of the Marine perimeter at Lunga Point.  His intent was two-fold: first, to conduct a reconnaissance of the region, and second, to ascertain whether Japanese troops were willing to surrender to Allied forces.  Soon after coming ashore, Japanese naval infantry attacked the patrol killing nearly every Marine.  In response, on 19 August, General Vandegrift sent three companies of Marines from the 5th Regiment to attack the Japanese troop concentration west of the Matanikau River.  One company attacked across the sandbar at the mouth of the river, while another crossed the river 1,000 meters inland and attacked the Japanese force at the…

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6 thoughts on “Guadalcanal: First to Fight —Part II”

      1. Thank you very much for saying so, Koji.
        PS. I was just watching the Little League World Series, Curacao vs Japan and noticed their manager’s name is also Koji (Good name!).

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