AR15.Com Archives
 Switching Theatres: European to Pacific
CrazyEddyMuldoon  [Team Member]
11/14/2010 6:32:00 PM EST
Just curious about this. Anybody have an idea how many guys were actually transferred to the Pacific after kicking Jerry's ass?

Were/would the the units be shipped in whole?

Casualties?
Paid Advertisement
--
Ross  [Team Member]
11/15/2010 1:28:00 AM EST
I have no idea on how many actually served in both theaters. Given the "Germany first" plan, it would be rare that units from the ETO would go to the PTO unitl Germany was done. Like all things in war, I'm sure some folks had to do it, but it wasn't a general practice. Remember, Germany had to get taken down first, so the PTO was back burner and wouldn't really suck resources away from the ETO directly as a matter of policy. The Navy shifted forces back and forth as needed, but Amy units were less likely to go from the ETO to the PTO until after VE day.

Since we were fighting on Okinawa when VE day rolled around, the only possible place that GIs from the ETO would redeploy to is the invasion of Japan itself. That was the only thing left to do. The actual plan for the invasion of Japan was incomplete as far as logistical details like that went. We know what the beaches were, what units were to land on what beaches, and what the overall objectives were after that, but not anything like what a specific unit from the ETO would be doing on X+12, or Y+13, etc.

The plan for redeploying the ETO units was for them to return to the USA and be reequipped, retrained, and remanned. Remember they would need to get a bunch of new people to replace combat losses and to replace those with enough "points" to get out of it. That kind of retraining would entail a month or more in the USA, and probably a month or more to move to the USA. Then another month on the backside to get to Japan. You have to remember alot of this was also dependent upon transportation as well. We would not be able to move everyone from the ETO at once. There weren't enough trains, ships, trucks etc. to do it. So they'd have to trickle out a few divisions at a time from the ETO. Then run through the Stateside training, which would be another couple months by the time they got everything together. Then another month to get moved to Japan.

When you look at the landing plan, and the redeployment plan, and the logistics of it all, many conclude that the only way to do it would be in a phased manner. You simply weren't going to be able to move all the ETO units slated to go, run them through training, and have them abord ship in time for the landing. There just wasn't enough time and resources for that. When you look at the landing plan, many units have no mission after the first few days of the landing. These are also the lead units in the landing. That has left many to speculate that those units were likely to be gone (killed) in the first few days of the landing. It does seem as though the PTO units would be doing the initial landing and securing the beach-head. That effort would probably have cost the landing force much of it's manpower. By the time the beach-heads were secure, and the initial units destroyed, the redeployed ETO units would be showing up to take their place and continue on with the mission. By the time those units were destroyed, brand new units from the USA would have arrived to take their place. That's just one theory of how it was going to go, but it fits with the controlling factor of warfare; logistics.
Phocks  [Team Member]
11/15/2010 10:50:37 AM EST
Don't have my sources here, but quite a few Soviet units went East in June-July 1945. As far as I know, no US or Commonwealth units actually made it to the Pacific after fighting in Europe, though I believe some USAAF and Navy units did redeploy. Note that some units that fought in the Pacific in 1942 did transfer to Europe (1SSF being the most prominent).
ByNameRequest  [Team Member]
11/15/2010 3:43:36 PM EST
I seem to recall that there were a lot of ETO units getting ready for deployment when the Pacific battles ended.

Will have to do some research to find out which ones....
CrazyEddyMuldoon  [Team Member]
11/16/2010 12:41:10 PM EST
thanks for the info guys. Would have really sucked to be redeployed after fighting through ALL of Europe to get killed in the pacific.
Ameshawki  [Member]
11/17/2010 5:43:36 AM EST
Navy units serving in both the ETO and the PTO were not uncommon, many ships served in both theaters. In Army units it was much less common. Individual Army personnel undoubtly served in both, my impression this was more common with Air Corps/Force personnel than ground pounders.

Several units were slated for the invasion of Japan. First Army was be one of the headquarter units. Don't have the books in front of me, but a number of ETO divisions were slated for Japan. Just how many individual personnel would have been ETO vets is hard to say. Obviously a number of replacements would have filtered in. The idea of invading Japan after fighting in Europe was anything but a popular idea among the troops. Fortunately it never came to pass.
ByNameRequest  [Team Member]
11/17/2010 11:45:10 AM EST
Here's a good article on Operation Downfall, the planned invasion of mainland Japan.

It lists some of the divisions that were planned to transfer from Europe.

Operation Downfall
Fox  [Team Member]
11/17/2010 11:55:52 AM EST
FWIW - my father was transferred from Patton's Third to the Japanese occupational force. He is long dead and I do not have the particulars or his complete records, which were destroyed in the "fire". I know he did not get to Europe until right around December, 1944, but not much more than that. I do not know how common it was to be transferred from one theater to another, but suspect it may have related to time in service or theater.


CrazyEddyMuldoon  [Team Member]
11/18/2010 4:06:31 PM EST
Originally Posted By By name request:
Here's a good article on Operation Downfall, the planned invasion of mainland Japan.

It lists some of the divisions that were planned to transfer from Europe.

Operation Downfall


Great map. That really put's things in perspective. Just 6 Marine divisions? Army was definatley gonna pick up most of that tab.

Phocks  [Team Member]
11/19/2010 3:32:42 AM EST
Originally Posted By CrazyEddyMuldoon:
Originally Posted By By name request:
Here's a good article on Operation Downfall, the planned invasion of mainland Japan.

It lists some of the divisions that were planned to transfer from Europe.

Operation Downfall


Great map. That really put's things in perspective. Just 6 Marine divisions? Army was definatley gonna pick up most of that tab.



The Army picked up most of the tab before Downfall too...around 53,000 dead and missing compared to 17,000 Marines...and 23,000 Navy. Note that the surrender of the garrison of the Philippines (about 20,000 Americans, only about 2,000 of which were Marines) was a big chunk of this, while the Marine garrisons of Wake and Guam were relatively small.
dkstg44  [Member]
11/19/2010 6:03:50 AM EST
This is a good breakdown of Marine and Navy casualties, than Army at bottom of page.


US Navy and Marine Corps Casualty Statistics for World War II


Source:
US Navy. Bureau of Medicine and Surgery. History of the Medical Departmentof the United States Navy in World War II: The Statistics of Diseases and Injuries. vol.3. Washington: Government Printing Office, 1950. OCLC 04067096.


This history lists the Navy and Marine Corps personnel who were killed in action with the enemy, died of wounds, and died as a prisoner of war, as well as those who were discharged from the service because of their wounds (invalided from service.)
The history provides statistics by officer and enlisted, but for the purpose of this summary, these numbers are totaled for each service.

Place of action KIA Wounded, Died, Invalided
died later POW from service
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
North African landings
Navy 472 17 0 80
Marine 3 1 0 1
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Sicilian landings
Navy 521 24 0 33
Marine 1 0 0 1
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Italian landings
Navy 788 31 1 74
Marine 0 0 0 0
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Landings in Southern France
Navy 36 8 0 20
Marine 0 0 0 0
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Invasion of France
Navy 1068 32 2 263
Marine 0 0 0 0
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Atlantic or Caribbean area unspecified
Navy 2443 14 0 79
Marine 1 0 0 1
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Attack on Pearl Harbor
Navy 1744 17 2 41
Marine 99 2 0 6
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Fall of the Philippines
Navy 337 2 630 3
Marine 89 0 413 1
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Netherlands, East Indies engagement
Navy 1656 12 94 7
Marine 36 0 7 0
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Pacific raids
Navy 40 0 4 2
Marine 0 1 0 0
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Battle of Coral Sea
Navy 537 6 1 11
Marine 19 2 0 0
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Battle of Midway
Navy 301 8 1 15
Marine 39 1 0 1
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Guadalcanal, Tulagi landings
Navy 1176 20 2 85
Marine 988 77 12 365
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Battle of Savo Island
Navy 936 11 0 51
Marine 33 0 0 2
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Battle of Eastern Solomons
Navy 85 4 0 4
Marine 0 1 0 1
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Battle of Cape Esperance
Navy 168 1 0 5
Marine 7 0 0 1
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Battle of Santa Cruz Islands
Navy 242 5 0 16
Marine 12 3 0 0
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Battle of Guadalcanal
Navy 971 20 2 62
Marine 10 1 0 8
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Battle of Tassafaronga
Navy 389 8 0 8
Marine 0 0 0 0
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Capture of remaining Solomons
Navy 1246 56 0 174
Marine 781 68 26 277
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Battle of Tarawa
Navy 724 3 0 23
Marine 950 34 0 210
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Battle of Cape Gloucester
Navy 145 9 0 20
Marine 325 33 2 157
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Invasion of Marshall Islands
Navy 187 3 1 44
Marine 401 34 0 141
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Invasion of Marianas
Navy 513 43 1 228
Marine 3995 342 0 2138
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Invasion of Palau Islands
Navy 185 10 0 68
Marine 1171 101 1 681
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Landings on Biak New Guinea
Navy 164 6 0 40
Marine 0 0 0 0
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Bombardment of Truk
Navy 78 3 0 12
Marine 7 0 0 1
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Return to the Philippines
Navy 4026 270 40 830
Marine 132 10 1 25
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Battle of Iwo Jima
Navy 934 48 0 349
Marine 4907 614 0 3114
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Bombardments of Formosa French Indochina
Navy 269 9 2 30
Marine 3 0 0 1
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Bombing and landing on Okinawa
Navy 3809 219 0 876
Marine 2897 347 0 2028
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Bombardment of Kyushu Island and Japan
Navy 963 6 1 38
Marine 61 0 0 3
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Aleutian or Alaskan area, unspecified
Navy 177 1 0 8
Marine 2 0 0 5
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Pacific or Asiatic area, unspecified
Navy 4462 12 93 188
Marine 20 0 1 1
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
After 1 July 1945
Navy 1103 14 2 88
Marine 41 0 4 172
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Specific action not determined
Navy 1719 20 30 773
Marine 346 10 43 721
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Total, all actions
Navy 34607 972 909 4647
Marine 17376 1682 510 10063
Total 51983 2654 1419 14710





Army: Pacific Theaters
Killed in action: 33,011
Died of wounds: 5,889
Declared dead: 2,889
Non-battle deaths: 20,673
Total: 62,462

Ameshawki  [Member]
11/19/2010 6:21:41 AM EST
Originally Posted By CrazyEddyMuldoon:
Originally Posted By By name request:
Here's a good article on Operation Downfall, the planned invasion of mainland Japan.

It lists some of the divisions that were planned to transfer from Europe.

Operation Downfall


Great map. That really put's things in perspective. Just 6 Marine divisions? Army was definatley gonna pick up most of that tab.



There were six Marine divisions in the Pacific. There were 21 Army divisions. Army participated in virtually every campaign the Marines were in, with the exception of Iwo and Tarawa. Guadalcanal, the Solomons, Marshalls, Marianas, Okinawa all had Army involvement. There was almost no Marine involvement with MacArthur's New Guinea or Philipines campaign (Cape Gloucester being the exception). The Army did a lot of heavy lifting in the Pacific.
Paid Advertisement
--