Iwo Jima Day
65 years ago this morning, the Marines landed on Iwo Jima. The battle raged on until March 16th. It was then that the final battle tally was realized.
There were 21,000 Japanese soldiers defending Iwo Jima. There were only 1,083 survivors.
Of the Marines that fought in the battle, 4,189 were killed and over 19,000 were injured.
To this day, there is still an argument whether this small island of volcanic ash and a few small airfields was worth the price that was paid.
Strategically speaking, it is a great location. Almost halfway between Tokyo and Saipan. The position allowed any occupying force the ability to refuel and attack in either direction. This allowed the planes to carry more ammunition and less fuel.
What is mot in dispute, is the fact that so many gave their lives for this War changing battle. Without the capture of this airfield, the Army Airforce couldn't have an effective attack on Japan.
So, 65 years later, take a moment to reflect on those that were a part of this important event and remember the sacrifice of those many who gave their lives.