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Pacific Battles

November 08, 1994

Your article on the St. Lo memorial was welcome reading for this old sailor. The 40th and so far the 50th World War II anniversaries concentrating on the Normandy invasion have made some of us feel our ordeal in the Pacific is a forgotten war. What your article neglects to mention is that by far the bulk of those 3,000 Kamikaze attacks came at a place called Okinawa. For six weeks the Navy was hammered by day and by night.

This was the last, the bloodiest, and the least known battle of the war. The surrender of Germany ahead of it and the cataclysms at Hiroshima and Nagasaki afterward succeeded in burying news of a fight of epic nastiness. Anyone with a strong enough stomach who would like to know more could read "Tennozan" by George Feifer. It tells exactly what we were up against, courtesy of the warlords who perpetrated the rape of Nanking and the death march on Luzon.

VARREL SMITH

Rancho Mirage

* The item about the first kamikaze reminds me of the last one in Leyte Gulf. It struck the ship ahead of ours in the convoy, carrying units of the 38th Infantry Division (Avengers of Bataan) during the first week of December.

KEITH STARK

Alhambra

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