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Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

Stepping Stones to Nowhere

The Aleutian Islands, Alaska, and American Military Strategy, 1867-1945

Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

Stepping Stones to Nowhere

The Aleutian Islands, Alaska, and American Military Strategy, 1867-1945

The Aleutian Islands, a mostly forgotten portion of the United States on the southwest coast of Alaska, have often assumed a key role in American military strategy. But for most Americans, prior to the Second World War, the bleak and barren islands were of little interest. In Stepping Stones to Nowhere, Galen Perras shows how that changed with the Japanese occupation of the western Aleutians, which climaxed in the horrendous battle for Attu. Perras reveals how this clash in the North Pacific demonstrated serious problems with the way that American civilian and military decision makers sought to incite a global conflict.

288 pages


Table of Contents

Introduction

1 One of Our Great Strategic Points: Alaskan Defence, 1867-1934

2 He Who Holds Alaska Will Hold the World: Alaskan Security, 1934-41

3 Entirely Open to Attack: Aleutian Defence, December 1941 to June 1942

4 All commanders on minor fronts regard their own actions as highly important: July 1942 to January 1943

5 Total Destruction Is the Only Answer: Westward to Attu

6 A Strong Alaska Means a Foot-Loose Fleet: Kiska’s Capture

7 We Have Opened the Door to Tokyo: Plans to Take the Kurile Islands, 1943-5

8 Stepping Stones to Nowhere

Notes

Bibliography

Index

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