The Battle of Iwo Jima


1945 Pacific theater

The information provided comes from Iwo Jima, by Richard Newcomb 1982. Naval action information is from The Fast Carriers:The Forging of an Air Navy, Clark Reynolds.

Operation Detachment

2/19 U.S Marines land on Iwo Jima at 8:59A.M.. This comes after 10 weeks of bombing from carrier based planes and medium bombers. The preliminary bombardment had been the heaviest up to that point in the war. A total of 70,000 U.S. Marines available for the invasion. Against 27,000 Japanese

The operation is under the overall command of Adm. R. A. Spruance, Commander Fifth Fleet. Vice Adm. R. K. Turner is the Joint Expeditionary Force Commander and Lt. Gen. H. M. Smith, UsmC, commands the Expeditionary Troops.

What the Marines had to go through on D-Day

The status of the invasion beaches on Iwo Jima after D-Day

Marine Artillery Firing Support to the Ground Troops

2/20 Marines start their advance south to Mt. Suribachi and north to the airfields. 2/21 Marines continuing their advance North and South on the island.

2/22 Marines finally have Mt. Suribachi surrounded and begin to move up the face of the mountain.

2/23 First units of Marines now at the top of Mt. Suribachi after bitter fighting.

2/24 4th and 5th Marines attack after a 76 minute naval bombardment. Followed by an airstrike and supporting artillery. It would be the tanks that led the way for both divisions.

2/25 3rd Marine division begins attack on the center of the Japanese line at 9:30 A.M.

2/28 Marines finally occupy the high ground over looking airfield #3.

2/31 Marines begin to attack hills 382 and 362A.

3/1 Marines finally take hill 382 now move on to capture 362A

3/2For the attack on hill 362A the Marines decide on a night attack.

3/4 First damaged B29 lands in Iwo Jima while fighting continues all around the island.

3/6 First P-51 begin arriving on the capture airfields to provide air support for the Marines. This also relieves Task Force 58 to begin preparations for Okinawa on 4/1.

3/8 The Japanese attempt to launch a counter attack between two Marine regiments (23rd and 24th)

3/15 resistance continues in many small pockets located on the island.

3/25 Last pocket of Japanese resistace was secured at Kitano Point.

4/7 100 P51's now stationed on the island and are escorting B29's on raids to Japan.

Total Losses

U.S. personnel 6,821 Killed 19,217 Wounded 2,648 Combat Fatigue Total 28,686

Marine Casualties 23,573

Japanese Troops 1,083 POW and 20,000 est. Killed

Final Analysis of the Battle