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"I fear all we have done is awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve."

               Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto       after being told the results of the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor

 

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THE RELICS OF WAR ON SAIPAN

 
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Saipan is such a beautiful place it is hard to imagine that a terrible BATTLE FOR SAIPAN took place here over 50 years ago but the remnants of this battle can still be seen today .  The picture on the left shows the famous Flame Trees of Saipan in full bloom covering a Japanese concrete pill box.

The undeveloped areas of Saipan  still have the tools of war.  The picture on the right shows the front of what is called the Last Command Post.  It was here the Japanese commander of Saipan,  Vice Admiral  Chuichi Nagumo committed suicide when all hope of being able to stop the American assault was lost.  Of  note  It was  Admiral Nagumo  that lead the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor which brought the United States into WWII.

The waters that surround Saipan are considered one of the best in the world for scuba diving because of the pristine clear water and abundant coral and marine life as shown in the Picture on the left.  But even the waters  still hold the relics of the battle that took place here.  The picture on the right shows a Sherman Tank  protruding from the beautiful lagoon of Saipan, Its gun is still pointing towards the beach it was  trying to reach during The Invasion of Saipan when it was knocked out by Japanese shell fire.

 

After the guns fell silent and the Islands of Saipan and Tinian were secured the Navy and Army construction crews came in and built massive airfields on both  Saipan and Tinian which is about a mile from Saipan  From these runways a constant stream of  Boeing B29 Superfortress  flew to Japan to destroy their war making ability.  As you can see in the picture on the left the runways on the Island of Tinian can still be seen.  It was from these very same runways a B29 named The Enola Gay took off on August 6th and dropped the first Atomic Bomb on the Japanese city of  Hiroshirna.  Three days later  a second B29 named Bock's Car dropped the second and last atomic bomb ever to be used in war on the Japanese city of Nagasaki.  Within days Japan surrendered and the war was over.