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Marine combat veteran and award-winning military historian Joseph Alexander takes a fresh look at one of the bloodiest
battles of the Pacific War. His gripping narrative, first published in 1995, has won him many prizes, with critics
lauding his use of Japanese documents and his interpretation of the significance of what happened. The first trial by
fire of America's fledgling amphibious assault doctrine, the violent three-day attack on Tarawa, a seemingly invincible
Japanese island fortress of barely three hundred acres, left six thousand men dead. This book offers an authoritative
account of the tactics, innovations, leadership, and weapons employed by both antagonists. Alexander convincingly argues
that without the vital lessons of Tarawa the larger amphibious victories to come at Saipan, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa might
not have been possible.