Chapter IX: 
Current Plans and Future Operations in the War Against Japan: June-August 1943
In the months between TRIDENT and QUADRANT the perspective of strategic planning for the war against Japan broadened. Washington and theater planners were looking ahead to the tasks of the future embodied in the TRIDENT resolutions. This entailed planning and preparing for six major projects: launching a Central Pacific offensive; continuation of the MacArthur-Halsey drive in the South-Southwest Pacific; ejection of the Japanese from the Aleutians; more airlift to China; mounting a land offensive in Burma; and developing an overall plan for the defeat of Japan. It began to appear that there were at least as many possible approaches and choices in the war against Japan as in the war against Germany. The first essays at synthesis on the combined planning level were attempted even before the Americans themselves clearly grasped all the alternatives or firmly agreed upon the choices.
In this interim period-when final strategy against Germany as well as Japan was not fixed-General Marshall and his staff sought to maintain a balance among the competing lines of action espoused by the Navy, General MacArthur, and the Allies in the Far East, and the basic military objectives in the global war. They tried to keep the war against Japan a dynamic, if limited war-one with increasing momentum, not enough to conflict with "beating Germany first" but enough to assure that, upon the defeat of Germany, Allied strength might be concentrated to defeat Japan rapidly. Amid these circumstances General Marshall and his staff sought to support within limits-all feasible strategic courses of action against Japan, reserving final decision on an over-all sequential plan until firm agreements were reached on long-range plans for Europe.
Launching the Central Pacific Thrust
The most important development in the war against Japan during the summer of 1943 was the firm decision to mount a campaign through the Central Pacific island chains. After the vague references of Casablanca were transformed  

into a definite approval at TRIDENT, the Navy began to apply full pressure upon the Army to get the drive under way as soon as possible. The initial Army reaction to the Navy's growing insistence was a cautious assent, provided the proposed Central Pacific campaign would not interfere with operations already scheduled for the rest of the Pacific.1 The opening of another front against Japan was expected to relieve Japanese pressure on other areas and to spread still further the already widely dispersed Japanese naval and air resources. If a drive were launched against the eastern flank, Japan would be threatened on all sides: by Allied forces in SOPAC and SWPA; by U.S. air forces in the Aleutians; by Chinese, British, and American units on the west;- and by the ever-present possibility of Soviet attack from Siberia. The compression of the great sprawling empire into a tight, little circle might soon begin in earnest, with the Japanese never certain where the next blow might fall.
The concept of a sweep through the mandated islands to the Philippines was almost as old as the Spanish-American War. For over thirty years, Naval War College classes had been presented, as a regular part of their curriculum, with the problem of recapturing the Philippines. Traditionally, there were three routes that could be followed: a direct frontal approach from the Hawaiian Islands; a northern drive from the Aleutians to the Marshalls, Truk, and the Marianas; and the southern route now being taken by MacArthur and Halsey. All three drives would be essentially amphibious, for the most part requiring strong naval support. The disaster at Pearl Harbor had provided a temporary setback to naval plans. With the resurgence of U.S. fleet strength through new construction and the decline of Japanese fleet strength since Midway, it was inevitable that naval demands would develop to utilize to the hilt the expanding fleet, especially the new, fast carriers.2
On 11 June Admiral King emphasized the dissatisfaction of the Navy with the prevailing inactivity in the Pacific. Pointing out that the attack on Attu had been the only offensive move carried out in the Pacific since the windup of the Guadalcanal Campaign and that the action in SWPA and SOPAC scheduled for June would be against lightly held or undefended positions, he recommended an offensive against the Marshalls about 1 November. The great need at the moment, he believed, was for a definite timetable of future operations and he thought that MacArthur should be asked to submit firm dates for SWPA. Furthermore, since the JCS were unable to devote the full amount of attention necessary to insure the maximum co-ordination and proper timing of all principal amphibious operations in the Pacific theater, he held that these responsibilities should be delegated to Nimitz.3
On the following day, 12 June, MacArthur, who had been asked by the War

Department to give his views on setting up dates for future operations, maintained that, aside from the 30 June date for the New Georgia-Kiriwina-Woodlark operations, prognostication would be "pure guesswork, " 4 His answer neither helped nor satisfied the joint Staff Planners, who had been assigned the task of studying King's proposals. As Admiral Cooke, the chief Navy planner, put it:
 . . . the Navy had desired to undertake operations in the South Pacific area before this, but had been restrained: the Navy was now proposing the Marshalls operation. The fleet cannot be permitted to remain relatively idle for nine or twelve months . . . to assist in ending the delays and postponements, the Navy wants to establish definite target dates for major operations.5
Colonel Roberts, representing General Wedemeyer, argued that the Army was in favor of beginning a campaign in the Central Pacific as soon as operations there could be undertaken with a reasonable assurance of success. The effect of operations in the Central Pacific on other operations in the Pacific, however, should be examined: ". . . the Army would not favor operations in the Marshalls at the cost of planned operations in the Southwest Pacific." 6 At this point the joint planners recommended that, in spite of the uncertainties, MacArthur be asked to set up tentative dates. In addition, they proposed that the suggested target date of 1 November for the Marshalls be examined in order to ensure that it would not conflict with SWPA and Aleutian operations.
The Army planners could not agree with King's proposal that Nimitz be assigned the responsibility for timing amphibious operations and held out for the retention of the status quo as far as command responsibilities were concerned.7 General Marshall and Admiral Leahy supported the Army planners' view as sound, since they felt that to accept King's suggestion would in fact give Nimitz command of the Pacific and place MacArthur under him. In their opinion, the timing of operations should remain a function of the joint Chiefs of Staff acting on advice of commanders in the field.8 The continued inability of the JCS to settle the persistent problem of Pacific command had thus resulted in another indecisive round.
On 15 June the Joint Chiefs of Staff informed MacArthur of the tentative plans to commence operations against the Marshalls about the middle of November in order to exploit the growing preponderance of naval strength in the Pacific. For these operations, the 1st Marine Division would be withdrawn from SWPA, and the 2d Marine Division, together with all combat loaders and the major part of Halsey's naval forces, would be taken from the South Pacific Area. To permit planning for the Central Pacific to proceed on a more realistic basis, MacArthur was asked to give an outline of the means and requirements, with provisional dates, for future operations in the South-Southwest Pacific areas. 9

Meanwhile, in the event that available means would make it impracticable to carry out a full-scale attack on the Marshalls, plans were also drawn up by the JWPC for the seizure of the more lightly defended Gilbert Islands. An operation against the Gilberts would have the advantages of requiring fewer resources and making a later move into the Marshalls much simpler.10
The intimation that a new line of attack might be opened through the Central Pacific disturbed MacArthur. He cabled Marshall: From a broad strategic viewpoint I am convinced that the best course of offensive action in the Pacific is a movement from Australia through New Guinea to Mindanao. This movement can be supported by land-based aircraft which is utterly essential and will immediately cut the enemy lines from Japan to his conquered territory to the southward. By contrast a movement through the mandated islands will be a series of amphibious attacks with the support of carrier based aircraft against objectives defended by naval units and ground troops supported by land based aviation. Midway stands as an example of the hazards of such operations. Moreover no vital strategic objective is reached until the series of amphibious frontal attacks succeed in reaching Mindanao. The factors upon which the old Orange plan were based have been greatly altered by the hostile conquest of Malaya and the Netherlands East Indies and by the availability of Australia as a base.11
The withdrawal of two Marine divisions from the CARTWHEEL operations, MacArthur went on, would preclude the capture of Rabaul and would cause profound political repercussions. It seemed to him that a complete reorientation of strategy must be under way if troops and shipping were now to be pulled back to Hawaii. He stated that since he was entirely in ignorance of TRIDENT decisions respecting the Pacific, he desired to be advised how they would affect the concept of operations in his theater. He proceeded to list the troops, shipping, and tentative timing of pre-Rabaul operations. Two regimental combat teams would commence operations against Kiriwina and Woodlark Islands on 30 June and should complete them by 15 August. He planned to use three Australian divisions and the U.S. 1st Cavalry Division to capture the northeastern New Guinea coast, commencing on 1 September. This operation should be finished by the end of the year. On 1 December, while the New Guinea operation was still in progress, the 1st Marine Division and the 32d Division would assault western New Britain, with the 24th and 41st Divisions in reserve. The assault should be completed by February. On the eastern axis in the South Pacific, Halsey would invade New Georgia on 30 June with the 43d Division as the assault force and planned to have the situation under control by 15 September. MacArthur did not know which forces Halsey would employ in the Buin-Faisi operation, ,but tentative dates for the operation were 15 October-1 December. The last move, the seizure of the Kieta-Buka area, would begin about 1 Decem-

ber and end in the middle of January.12
MacArthur's strong opposition to the withdrawal of the Marine divisions caused Marshall to turn down King's request for the release of the 1st Marines for the Central Pacific campaign. King's request was coupled with a Navy proposal for the definite allocation of two additional Army divisions for the Southwest Pacific. After all, Marshall informed King, the 1st Marines had been rehabilitated and re-equipped in SWPA after the bitter Guadalcanal struggle, and the 25th Division had been diverted to SOPAC as a replacement. Since the invasion of New Britain required an amphibiously trained division, he considered that the withdrawal of the marines would occasion a serious delay and could not be justified. As for the additional Army divisions, the 1st Cavalry Division would arrive in SWPA by 1 August and the 24th Infantry Division was scheduled to move from Hawaii to SWPA by September. Since it had been assumed that both of these divisions would participate in the CARTWHEEL operations, their assignment should now be considered firm.13
A parallel proposal involving the diversion of a heavy bomber group and a medium bomber group from either SWPA or SOPAC to the Central Pacific was submitted by the Air Forces to both MacArthur and Lt. Gen. Millard F. Harmon. For planning purposes, Arnold desired to know the estimated effect on theater operations if such a withdrawal were made about November and also if it were made at a later date-January or February 1944.14
MacArthur's response was emphatic: Air supremacy is essential to success. With my present strength, this [success] is problematical. The withdrawal of two groups of bombers would, in my opinion, collapse the offensive effort in the Southwest Pacific Area. In my judgment the offensive against Rabaul should be considered the main effort and it should not be nullified or weakened by withdrawals to implement a secondary attack. . . 15
Harmon was equally opposed, since he believed that his forward progress might be seriously jeopardized by any diversion from his theater.16 These strong protests of the theater commanders were effective in staving off any diversions of bombers from their areas. The bomber groups later assigned to the Central Pacific air forces were sent directly from the United States.17
As plans for operations against the mandated islands took shape, it became

evident that the Army and Navy disagreed as to the importance of the project. To the Army, the Central Pacific offensive could be considered as a subsidiary diversion that would disperse Japanese means and inflict further losses upon the enemy while the main effort in the South-Southwest Pacific moved forward. But as Colonel Bessell, senior Army member of the JWPC, pointed out, the Army should not be pushed into action for action's sake:
We are trying to reconcile a fast-growing Navy, all deployed in the PACIFIC, with ground and air units which must go to all theaters and in major part to the principal (European) theater so as to be able to "defeat Germany first."
There seems to have grown up in our Navy the fixation that any action by the Fleet must acquire territory. Thus the continual demand that air and ground forces keep pace with the naval expansion in the PACIFIC. We cannot do this until Germany is defeated, and this fact must be admitted. Until we defeat Germany naval action without accompanying ground and shore-based action must be the rule and not the exception. We must have more sea and carrier borne raids and demonstrations in force. If the Japanese Fleet will not come to us, let us go to it, (now that numerical superiority is assured) . . . .
I favor finding out:
(1) When can we do the MARSHALLS? If not too late after 1 December 1943, let's do it then, and not assume the risk of delaying the MARSHALLS by undertaking the GILBERTS first. If too late, then OK, let's do the GILBERTS.
(2) Whether we can't "do something" other than the GILBERTS between now and the MARSHALLS . . . .
(3) The exact effects of the GILBERTS on Cartwheel. In short, let's make no hasty decision based on a hasty estimate just in order to "do something."18
The Army planning staff brought forward a number of objections to specific operations against the Marshalls and Gilberts then under consideration on the joint planning level. The planners argued that the proposed operation against the Marshalls would require the postponement of all operations aimed at Rabaul until well into 1944. "This proposed postponement cannot be accepted. It would be strategically unsound and would result in major political repercussions."19 Nor was the plan for a direct assault on the Marshalls, in their view, sound. The Japanese, because of their large number of mutually supporting bases that would still remain in the Marshalls-Gilberts area and their well-developed ferry route, would regain air superiority as soon as the large carrier forces had to withdraw. The means for ferrying U.S. land-based planes, except for heavy bombers, in to the newly acquired islands did not exist. More feasible to the planners appeared to be the current plan for the Gilberts operation. The ground forces and assault shipping required could be obtained without a serious interruption to CARTWHEEL, though the heavy and medium bomber groups for the garrison force in the Gilberts could be provided only at the expense of other theaters. All such bomber units were earmarked for the build-up in the United Kingdom and, if diverted, could be replaced only from those already employed in the Mediterranean. Before any commitment was made to either operation, the planners therefore con-

cluded, all possible operations east of the Philippines-Honshu line must be carefully analyzed.20
The Navy, on the other hand, visualized the operations against the Marshall Islands as the beginning of a new phase in which the expanding carrier forces would speed the end of the war and probably become the spearhead of the attack. Its position received strong support from the joint Strategic Survey Committee, which had just reviewed U.S. strategy in the Pacific. The committee believed that the United States was trying to reverse the Japanese campaign of 1942 without the benefit of either the surprise or the overwhelming superiority that the enemy had possessed. Judging from the slowness of the advance in New Guinea and the Solomons, the JSSC held that no quick returns could be expected there in the near future and that it was time to reorient Pacific strategy by according first priority to the Central Pacific. Only in the Central Pacific could the increased U.S. naval forces operate to advantage and perhaps force the Japanese Fleet into an engagement.21 King found the committee's report very much to his liking and backed it actively. He argued that the slowness of the progress in the war against Japan underlined the need to employ naval units, now available in increasing numbers, along the broad eastern sea approaches to the Philippine Islands. In this way the Navy could contribute much more toward accelerating the tempo of operations and to cutting the Japanese lines of communication. At the same time, it could avoid the Japanese land-based aviation that threatened an approach to the Philippines through the more restricted waters of the Celebes Sea.22
The Army planners were unwilling to accept this shift in emphasis so casually. As they saw it, until a comprehensive plan for the defeat of Japan had been drawn up the merits of the two avenues of approach to the Philippines could not be fairly assessed. After an over-all plan had been agreed upon, it would then be necessary to determine whether the physical occupation of Truk and Rabaul would be required and to analyze the effect of Central Pacific operations on all efforts in other theaters. The planners agreed with MacArthur that the U.S. Fleet would be at a serious disadvantage in the Marshalls-Carolines area because of the threat of Japanese land-based airpower.23
The reluctance of the Army to concede at this time the advantages of the Central Pacific route over the SWPA approach was reflected in the 19 July recommendations of the joint Staff Planners to the JCS on future strategy in the Pacific. Since pressure had to be maintained upon the enemy and since the means to carry out the CARTWHEEL operations were already in, or en route to, the theater, the planners believed that CARTWHEEL should be carried out according to plan. CARTWHEEL, moreover, should serve to inflict additional losses upon the Japanese and decrease their ability to resist the Central Pacific attack. The 

large U.S. naval forces could seize the Gilbert Islands and Nauru about 1 December and thereby widen the front against the Japanese, yet still be within supporting distance of the South Pacific operations. In this way, bases to mount successive operations against the Marshalls and Carolines could be captured, and at the same time the lines of communication to the South-Southwest Pacific could be shortened. The South-Southwest and the Central Pacific lines of attack could be mutually supporting, and the means necessary to stage the Gilberts offensive would not be of such a large scale as to weaken the South-Southwest Pacific drive. Only the 2d Marine Division would have to be withdrawn from the South Pacific to the Central Pacific, and if Rabaul could be neutralized and later bypassed, there would be no requirement for the division in SOPAC anyway. Additional land forces for the Central Pacific drive would come from Hawaii, and air forces could be assigned from the Eleventh Air Force in Alaska after Kiska was taken. The Gilberts would be an ideal staging point for forward movement into the Marshalls, possibly about 1 February 1944, and in the meantime post-CARTWHEEL operations in SWPA would be aimed at gaining control of the Bismarck Archipelago by seizing Manus, Kavieng, and Wewak.24 Finding that most of the Army's major objections had been met, the Army planners recommended to General Marshall that this report be approved.25
On the question of timing, the JCS acquiesced in King's desire to advance the target date for the Gilberts to 15 November and that for the Marshalls to 1 January. Otherwise, the JCS accepted the joint planners' estimates and agreed that by tying Central and South-Southwest Pacific operations together, each offensive would assist the other. Arnold commented that there might be a little difficulty in providing some of the heavy and medium bombers deemed necessary for the Central Pacific operations, but he felt that since the operations were so important, the Air Forces would have to make the means available somehow. Admiral King maintained that the Central Pacific operations would not interfere with those in the Southwest Pacific. Rather, they would augment them. General Marshall took the position that the United States could ill afford to leave idle the great carrier forces then available, and he, too, felt the operations would help CARTWHEEL.26
The JCS directive of 20 July to Nimitz instructed him to organize and train forces for amphibious operations against the Ellice and Gilbert Islands and Nauru; to ready airfields and bases; to carry out the operations; and to prepare for a follow-up move into the Marshalls about 1 January 1944. Fiji and/or Pearl Harbor could be used to mount the operations, and the target date would be about 15 November. The offensive forces would consist of the 2d Marine Division and an Army division, plus supporting troops.27

On the heels of this directive came another attempt by Admiral King to secure release of the 1st Marine Division from SWPA or the 3d Marine Division from the South Pacific for use in the Central Pacific. Again Marshall was obliged to point out the need for both in the forthcoming CARTWHEEL operations. The waste of shipping entailed would aggravate the already critical situation, he commented, and, furthermore, the Army's 27th Division, then in Hawaii, could be amphibiously trained and used in the Gilberts without dislocating other operations or complicating shipping schedules. The Navy accepted the 27th Division in lieu of one of the Marine divisions.28
While the JCS were discussing the Gilberts and Marshalls operations, the joint planners moved on to the formulation of outline plans that would push the Central Pacific advance further forward and that would serve to open the line of communications to the Sulu and Celebes Sea areas. They envisaged the seizure of Ponape, the Truk area of the Carolines, and the Palaus as possible intermediate objectives along this route.29 The Gilberts and Marshalls were to be simply the first steppingstones across the Pacific. The acceptance by the JCS of the Central Pacific offensive inaugurated a new phase in the war against Japan, a predominantly naval phase, built about the mobility of the new fast carriers. The overland and island-hopping advances hitherto characteristic of the Pacific war were now to be gradually supplanted through swifter, bolder strikes by large naval forces knifing behind the Japanese lines of defense and cutting off their forward defense positions.
The SWPA Approach to the Philippines
While Washington was busy with plans for campaigns against the mandated islands, the initial phase of the pre-Rabaul operations had gotten under way.30 In SWPA, Kiriwina and Woodlark Islands off the southeastern tip of New Guinea had been seized on 30 June without opposition. In fact, the Japanese were unaware that the islands had been captured until several months later.31 In the South Pacific, the invasion of New Georgia in the Solomons had begun on the same day and was progressing satisfactorily. In Washington, however, the joint planners had already shifted their interest to post-CARTWHEEL operations. Outline plans had been prepared for the advance to the northeast New Guinea-Bismarck Archipelago-Admiralty Islands area and as far as the Vogelkop Peninsula of western New Guinea. 32  To  

assist in this long-range planning, MacArthur was requested to submit his outline plans for the recapture of the Philippines 33
In the meantime, Marshall informed MacArthur that to him the most feasible operations after CARTWHEEL Would be to isolate Rabaul by seizing Kavieng on New Ireland and Manus Island in the Admiralties on one flank and capturing Wewak in New Guinea on the other. Marshall's suggestions drew quick fire from the SWPA commander, who maintained that the hazards of attempting an operation against Wewak before the fall of Rabaul would make success doubtful. Since Wewak was heavily garrisoned, MacArthur felt that it should first be isolated and subjected to bombing from bases seized during the operations leading up to the assault on Rabaul. Moreover, MacArthur continued, an Allied naval base must be secured to support further operations against the coast of New Guinea, and Rabaul offered the only area suitable for this purpose.34
The SWPA plan for the recapture of the Philippines-RENO II-arrived in Washington early in August.35 MacArthur cautioned Marshall that RENO II was simply a general outline of the broad concepts currently held in SWPA headquarters. He explained that the pressure of operations had precluded its development in detail.36 The main features of RENO II indicated clearly that the SWPA staff still held fast to the idea of an orderly march to the Philippines, covering its forward movement by land-based aircraft. The capture of Rabaul was deemed necessary as the next forward step, in order that preparations might be made for movement into western New Guinea and thence up to the Philippines via Halmahera, Morotai, and Manado.37 There was little new in the plan. RENO II held that all available means should be concentrated in the line of action that promised maximum possibilities for exploitation, since planned allocations for the Pacific did not permit major offensive operations in more than one place at a time. If Allied strength were consolidated, the length of the "bounds" forward and the tempo of the war could be increased. The plan indicated that it would be at least 1945 and possibly later before Mindanao could be captured but that Rabaul and the Admiralties should be in Allied possession by the summer of 1944.38
Two familiar threads ran through RENO II: the strong belief of MacArthur and his staff in the prime importance of their strategic goals and in the efficacy of their methods of prosecuting the war; and the familiar plea for additional allocations to step up the pace of the war. With the first, the Washington Army staff had no real dispute at this time; the second, the Army planners could heed only at the expense of the European war.  

When the Central Pacific offensive began, the strategic views of MacArthur and his staff would be subjected to closer scrutiny by the JCS. And as long as the European war retained its pre-eminence in the eyes of the CCS, all allocations for the Pacific would continue to be examined and balanced carefully against the requirements for Europe.
Anticlimax at Kiska
Meanwhile, matters were coming to a head in the North Pacific. The resolution of the CCS at TRIDENT to eject the Japanese from the Aleutians gave the United States official permission to end the battles of attrition and weather that had been waged during the past year in the North Pacific. With the fall of Attu in May 1943, only one stronghold, Kiska, remained under enemy control. Plans for its seizure had been under consideration for some time, but lack of necessary means to take the island, supposedly garrisoned by 10,000 stubborn Japanese, had forced postponement.
During the TRIDENT Conference, Nimitz and DeWitt had urged the JCS to approve an operation against Kiska in September, but the Army was reluctant to commit itself to more than the making of plans and preparations.39 Before the Washington Army staff definitely accepted the operation, it wished the full implications with respect to critical items of special equipment to be examined. In fact General Wedemeyer and General Fairchild, the latter of the JSSC, believed that the reduction of Kiska might prove costly and that it might serve the Allied cause better to permit the Japanese to hold the island and suffer the attrition that such a course would entail 40 The Navy, on the other hand, was anxious to expel the remnants of the Japanese from the entire Aleutian chain. The sizable naval forces required in the North Pacific could then be released for employment elsewhere.
In early June Marshall indicated his willingness to leave the final decision on a Kiska operation to the Navy since he considered it primarily a naval concern, but, he cautioned, the gains should be weighed against the cost.41 The Joint Staff Planners were given the task of threshing out the details. With Sir John Dill's assistance, the JCS secured the consent of the British to use PLOUGH Force in the operation, as suggested by the War Department planning staff.42

The joint planners could see little point in delaying the undertaking since, insofar as climatic conditions were concerned, August would be the most favorable month remaining in 1943. They recommended that a joint directive to Nimitz and DeWitt be approved and the two commanders be permitted to establish the target date, which was later set at 15 August. Five regimental combat teams plus PLOUGH Force and an additional artillery battalion were to be made available; a total of 32,000 troops would be employed. The JCS accepted these recommendations.43 The preparation and assembly of this large task force occupied the next two months.
In the meantime, the Japanese had decided to pull out of Kiska, and by the end of July they had managed, undetected, to evacuate all their troops by submarine and surface vessel. Heavy fog and murky weather had given the enemy a strong assist.44 Thus, when the Eleventh Air Force gave Kiska a heavy pounding during the first two weeks of August, its bombs fell on a deserted island and the assault troops moving in on the 15th suffered their only casualties from friendly sources.45
The anticlimax at Kiska was compounded by miserable weather conditions. Even had the task force commander been aware of the Japanese evacuation plans, it is doubtful that he could have done much to prevent the Japanese move. More thorough reconnaissance might have revealed the evacuation, but it would have come too late to halt the mounting of the large forces for the expedition. In any event, with the occupation of Kiska and the restoration of U.S. control throughout the island chain, the mission of clearing the Japanese from the Aleutians was completed. Although planning for the use of the northern approach to Japan-still largely contingent on Soviet entry into the war-continued, the concern of the Washington planners over Alaska receded sharply. Men, planes, and equipment assigned to its defense could now be employed at more vital tasks in other theaters.
The Assam Bottleneck
The resolve of the TRIDENT conferees to increase the capacity of the air route to China to 10,000 tons per month by early fall quite naturally included the development of the air and rail facilities in Assam as a companion objective. Without the latter, there would be no possibility of attaining even the more modest goal of 7,000 tons for July that the President had promised Chiang. The difficult weather conditions of the monsoon season, coupled with the poor transportation system of Assam, slowed construction of air facilities almost to a standstill at the very time when great speed was essential to keep up with the influx of aircraft and supplies.  

Both the War Department and CCS stood ready to assist. The Air Forces attached ground personnel of CBI bombardment units to the Air Transport Command (ATC) in Assam in an effort to keep the transports in operation until suitable personnel could be sent from the United States. The CCS gave the CBI theater permission to borrow motor transport from the British to help relieve the congestion at Assam railheads until additional trucks could be shipped in and urged that similar transportation problems be worked out in co-operation with the British Army in India.46 Men and machines of the Ledo Road construction project were made available for airfield development, but basically, as General Wheeler, Commanding General, SOS, CBI, pointed out, the antiquated railroad that serviced Assam was the limiting factor. British co-operation had been sincere, he maintained, but old-fashioned methods of operation and shortages of rolling stock had proved to be the big stumbling block.47
In spite of earnest efforts to boost the tonnage flown over the Hump, the CBI theater estimated in mid-July that only approximately 3,200 tons would be carried during that month. This drew the quick response from Arnold that he found the estimate not only "most disappointing" but also "unacceptable." He demanded to know specifically why more transports were not in service and what was needed to get them into operation.48 He also requested Stilwell's aid in ensuring that spare parts for the airlift were not being diverted from the ATC.49 Arnold's concern brought swift assurances from the ATC commander, Col. Edward H. Alexander, that all agencies were doing everything possible to increase the Hump tonnage but that the task itself was enormous and the machinery to do the job was not yet on hand.50
The total lift of the ATC in July amounted to only 4,500 tons instead of the 7,000 promised by the President, though the promised transport planes were delivered on time and sufficient personnel and freight were on hand to man and load them. Part of the failure to meet the Presidential goal must be ascribed to the state of the Assam line of communications, which precluded the swift construction of the necessary air facilities. Part must be attributed to some lack of efficiency in the India-China wing, ATC, which did not operate as competently over the Hump as the civilian Chinese National Aviation Corporation (CNAC).51 

Air Operations and Command Problems in the CBI
The disappointing showing of the airlift during the first few months after TRIDENT affected operations in China. Because of tonnage deficiencies, the growth and fighting capabilities of Chennault's air force were of necessity curtailed and the scope of his operations restricted. The total tonnage carried over the Hump in July failed to reach the 4,790-ton mark assigned to Chennault's air force alone. Moreover, intensified Japanese ground and air activity, begun in the late spring, had required a greater effort from the Fourteenth Air Force. It would evidently be impossible to conduct a sustained air drive as long as the supply line remained inadequate.
The offensive launched in May by the Japanese advancing along the Yangtze River course toward the Tung-Ting Lake area had frightened the Chinese. Stilwell, then in Washington, had directed General Bissell, commanding general of the Tenth Air Force, to send forty P-40's from India to the Fourteenth Air Force and to be ready for the possible transfer of a medium bombardment squadron. In addition, Marshall ordered twenty-five P-38's from North Africa to China to help out in the crisis, and Chiang promised to use the Chinese Air Force to the maximum. The Chinese were informed by McNarney that any further increases of air forces in China would depend on Stilwell's estimate of the situation and would have to come from transfers from the Tenth to the Fourteenth Air Force.52
The many claims on the Fourteenth Air Force in its attempts to check the Japanese advance led to the postponement of other air projects in the CBI. The Army was forced to defer a Navy request that some of the Fourteenth's operational efforts be devoted to mining the continental shelf of east Asia, although it recognized that this menace to Japanese merchant shipping might prove to be most effective. After the Japanese drive petered out in early June and the enemy fell back to his former positions along the Yangtze, the Army made arrangements to mine the inland waters, and the Navy supplied four additional transport planes to carry the tonnage for the project over the Hump.53
The Japanese offensive that had so frightened the Chinese turned out to be another multipurpose foray made in an attempt to open the Yangtze as far as Ichang, release the river steamers in that area for use downstream, destroy the rice crop, and train Japanese combat forces. Stilwell complimented Chennault's air force for its work in lifting Chinese morale by disrupting Japanese communications and strafing river traffic during the foray. He pointed out to Marshall, however, that the diversion of Chinese troops from the Yunnan force to repel

this threat not only had reduced its size but also had delayed its training by six weeks.54
While the Japanese were challenging the Chinese-American air forces in the field, plans were laid in Washington to build up the Fourteenth Air Force in China and the Tenth Air Force in India, especially in high-altitude fighters, so that they could cope with improved enemy aircraft.55 In early July the War Department also approved the recommendations of Brig. Gen. Howard C. Davidson, who had just come back from the CBI (and later was to become commanding general of the Tenth Air Force), regarding low-altitude bombing attacks against the Achilles' heel of Japan-merchant shipping. However, as Handy pointed out, although Chennault would have the strength to carry out this bombing when planned allocations were received, the tactical employment of his forces would still remain Stilwell's responsibility.56
Plans alone could not build up an air force, and although planes and personnel were provided Chennault on schedule, the expansion of his air force soon outstripped the logistical support that could be supplied by the airlift. There was some justice in Bissell's complaint of early July that, because of the shortage "of gasoline and bombs, bombers were being kept on the ground in China when they could have been used in India against targets in Burma.57
To complicate matters further at this point, Stilwell reported to Marshall that Chiang was contemplating punitive action against the Chinese Communists and requested guidance on the role of U.S. air forces if civil war should break out. He himself advocated a strict hands-off policy. Marshall asked Soong to investigate what could be done to avert any such possibility. As it turned out, the potential crisis soon blew over without incident, and the War Department was not forced to take a definite stand.58
Chiang's dissatisfaction with the current status of China's affairs was not limited to the Communist problem. Chennault warned Arnold that the Generalissimo was about to approach the President directly on the lack of improvement in the air supply route.59 It turned out to be Mme. Chiang Kai-shek, newly returned to China from Washington, who presented the Chinese case. She wrote the President that Chennault had only received 1,700 tons in June instead of 3,000, and was unlikely to get more  

than 3,000 in July of the 4,790 tons promised him. The failure of the Hump deliveries, she continued, could be blamed on the delays in airfield construction in Assam and the lack of centralization of control at the operating airfields, but the situation was not beyond repair. If immediate efforts could be made to supply the personnel, planes, and equipment formerly promised, part of Chennault's program might be salvaged during the remainder of the good flying weather. She asked the President's help in securing these requirements.60 The President turned the matter over to the War Department.
While the War Department considered ways and means to speed the Hump build-up, the Fourteenth Air Force was again subjected to increasing pressure from Japanese air elements. In late July Chennault's Chief of Staff, General Glenn, requested additional reinforcements from the Tenth Air Force, but Stilwell, considering the defense of the ferry route his first duty, was reluctant to deplete further his Assam air forces. Since Chennault's use of heavy bombers to attack merchant shipping had led to the sharp Japanese reaction and since this reaction was what Chennault had desired and had expressed himself confident of being able to handle, Stilwell had little sympathy with his predicament. Opinion in Washington Army circles tended to support Stilwell's view, and it was felt that if Chennault could not meet the Japanese threat to his air forces, he could withdraw the bombers from the attacks on shipping and use them against other objectives.61
Although Chennault could draw little comfort from Stilwell or his fellow officers in Washington in his requests for additional aid, certain command changes were made in the CBI air forces that tended to strengthen his position. As has been noted, Marshall had informed Stilwell in late March that for political reasons it would be impossible to put any other air officer over Chennault at this time.62 However, the Chief of Staff did move during the TRIDENT Conference to provide Stilwell with a competent senior air officer to co-ordinate theater air problems. His selection was Maj. Gen. George E. Stratemeyer, then in the CBI on an inspection tour with Handy and currently Arnold's Chief of the Air Staff. The appointment called for delicate handling, since the Generalissimo's candidate for over-all air commander was Chennault, whom he desired to make his own Air chief of staff with a status independent of Stilwell. Marshall had to remind the President that in his opinion Chennault knew little about the ever-present problem of logistics and that, furthermore, he had been a paid employee of the Chinese Government.63 The President, in turn, had to break the news of Stratemeyer's appointment to Chiang diplomatically, assuring him that this appointment "would not interfere with the intimate and direct relationship between you and Chennault." 64  

To Stilwell's quick protest against any special status for Chennault, Marshall replied:
The peculiar situation in your theater as pertains to Chennault is fully appreciated. However a situation exists here with reference to the same matter with which you are familiar and which is controlling. In this case, the matter of an air commander had been taken up by Soong with the Generalissimo and he leas refused. This was known to the President. Accordingly, the only practical method under the circumstances whereby Stratemeyer could be set up as Air Commander for your theater is by [this] procedure. With Stratemeyer on the ground, actual developments should work out much more satisfactorily than expected 65
To propitiate Chiang further, Roosevelt allowed Chennault to become chief of staff of the Chinese Air Force in July and thus to obtain direct access to the Generalissimo, even though, in his role as Fourteenth Air Force commander, Chennault still remained under Stilwell. In another move calculated to ease the tension in the theater, Bissell, long persona non-grata to Chennault, was relieved by the War Department in July and brought back to Washington for the post of Assistant Chief of Air Staff, Intelligence. General Davidson replaced him as commanding general of the Tenth Air Force in India.66 Marshall reassured Stilwell that the Tenth Air Force would retain its current independent status.67
The general dissatisfaction with the slow development of the airlift to China was reflected in these changes. The appointment of Stratemeyer as a trouble shooter was the Army's answer to the Generalissimo's attempt to make Chennault an independent air commander and give him control of the ferry route. Chennault's elevation to the position of Chinese Air Chief of Staff and the recall of Bissell had been offered as palliatives by the President to make the acceptance of Stratemeyer easier, but it seemed clear that the War Department would have to secure increased efficiency of operation and swifter augmentation of the airlift to stave off further maneuvers on the part of those favoring Chennault's views.
Origins of the Southeast Asia Command
The difficulties of the supply route and the problems of the air situation were paralleled by the intricacies of the land war in India-Burma. Administrative, logistical, and command complications had plagued the British ever since the Japanese had driven them out of Burma in 1942. The poor exhibition made by Empire troops in subsequent clashes with the enemy in Burma and the explanations offered in defense by successive commanders led Churchill to the conclusion that a reorganization of the top command and the injection of new blood into the leadership were necessities.68
Shortly after TRIDENT, the Prime Minister provided the President with his concept of a new organization that would 

divorce the operational command from the administrative headaches of India. Under this plan, Wavell would be appointed Viceroy of India and General Sir Claude Auchinleck would become Commander in Chief, India. An operational command would be established for southeast Asia, patterned after either the MacArthur or the Eisenhower model. Churchill suggested Air Chief Marshal Sir Sholto Douglas as a worthy choice for commander in chief. Stilwell might possibly be his deputy, and three Britishers would be selected as sea, land, and air commanders. Churchill himself favored the SWPA type of headquarters, with the British Chiefs of Staff acting as executive agents for the CCS in matters of operational strategy.69
The President and his military staff welcomed Churchill's proposals, but requested the submission of other names for the position of commander in chief. Roosevelt reminded the Prime Minister that any change in the CBI command organization would have to be coordinated with Chiang.70 Churchill assured Roosevelt that there was no intention of encroaching upon Chiang's domain and that the new command would be restricted to southeast Asia. However, Churchill did feel that all troops and air units operating in southeast Asia should come under the supreme commander.71
While the political leaders were engaged in this exploratory exchange, Marshall and his staff considered the complications of a southeast Asia command. The Chief of Staff advised the JCS that Eisenhower's command organization should serve as a model rather than MacArthur's, since the U.S. policy of aid to China would not allow "direct subordination to the British Chiefs of Staff of any supreme command which embraces the means of our aid to China." 72 He visualized Stilwell as retaining command of his present forces and serving as a coordinator for troops operating in or from China against areas under the new command. Marshall's reservations about the current British military leadership in India-Burma were apparent in his comment on the command of U.S. troops. "It is essential, in my opinion," he concluded, "that we provide American leadership for our American effort, as well as the Chinese troops concerned, rather than permitting these components to be placed under British command." 73
Although the British were doubtful that Stilwell could effectively discharge so many duties simultaneously, they consented to his attempting the task, since the President had approved Marshall's recommendations. On the other hand, they reiterated their advocacy of the MacArthur type of command as more suitable for the new setup and again strongly supported Sir Sholto Douglas  

for supreme commander.74 The Americans clung just as stubbornly to their belief in the Eisenhower model. They argued that, as the pace of the war against Japan quickened, it would eventually be necessary to co-ordinate operations in southeast Asia with those in the Pacific. This future centralization should logically come from Washington, since Chiang would have to be consulted in developing future strategy and had representation only on the Pacific War Council, which met in the American capital.75 Insofar as Douglas was concerned, the U.S. Chiefs flatly refused to accept him, pointing, among other things, to his "lack of experience in Allied matters." They were perfectly willing to have a British supreme commander but held that the man chosen must at least be acceptable to the United States if the new command were to have any chance for success. As alternates they put forward the names of Admiral Cunningham and Air Marshal Tedder, but the British would not release either of the men from his current command.76
At this juncture, with all the signs of a stalemate on command and organization in the offing, negotiations were halted until the Anglo-American conference convened at Quebec in August. In the meantime, southeast Asia affairs and the preparations for Burma operations continued to be handled by General Headquarters in India .77 Relative inaction on the part of the Allied ground forces in that area was to prevail for several more months while debate and discussion held the floor.
Sino-British Attitudes and Policies
The struggle to get major land operations under way in Burma continued during the months following TRIDENT, but the undertaking was urged without enthusiasm by the British and Chinese and sometimes with pessimism by the Americans. Had the Allies been able to agree on a new command for southeast Asia and an energetic commander taken charge, perhaps the negative attitude might have been counteracted.
The modified version of ANAKIM, now called SAUCY, which was adopted at TRIDENT, called for coordinated and simultaneous land offensives from Ledo in India and Yunnan in China by the Chinese and from Imphal in India by the British, coupled with British amphibious landings along the Arakan coast in Burma. SAUCY was presented to Chiang Kai-shek after the conference for his consideration, but the Generalissimo was in no hurry to approve the latest Anglo-American offering, which was a definite step backward after the more grandiose ANAKIM. He was especially concerned about the strength of the naval demonstration to be held in the Bay of Bengal and the extent of the U.S. participation in the operations. He asked the President to use his influence to make certain that the British did not delay in carrying  

out their share of the plan.78 Then, while Stilwell fumed, Chiang deliberated for over a month before deciding to accept the plan .79
Stilwell had difficulty in preparing the Yunnan and Ledo Chinese forces for their parts in the SAUCY operation. During the Japanese threat to the Tung-Ting Lake area, troops had been diverted from the Yunnan force, and later Stilwell had to enlist Soong's assistance in preventing the Chinese War Ministry from diverting arms and equipment intended for the Yunnan force to other areas. Soong also was instrumental in securing fillers for the Chinese divisions training in India for the advance from Ledo, when these were slow in coming through.80 The British, on the other hand, opposed the transfer of additional Chinese divisions from China and their training in India. They maintained that the Ledo Road would be unable to support additional divisions in operations in Burma and that any number of well-trained troops could be used in China itself and should be readied there.81
While their opinion of China's capabilities and importance was fairly low, the British were very much interested in receiving operations reports and collecting intelligence information from China. Stilwell strongly opposed giving them this type of information on the ground that his Chinese sources would dry up as soon as they discovered that the British were sharing the reports.82 In Stilwell's opinion, to establish a combined liaison committee to pool information would be ". . . like piling Pelion on Ossa and Delhi is already full of Ossas sitting on committees . . . ."83
Although Marshall sympathized with Stilwell's position, he sustained the British request and reminded Stilwell that China was but one segment of the world situation:
This matter brings up the entire question of cooperation with the British upon which I must give you my frank views. Regardless of any feeling the Chinese may have toward the British, the British are our principal ally in fighting this war. It is imperative that we exert every effort to bring about genuine practical cooperation. Any action which tends towards bringing about a serious cleavage between us and the British will have a most serious effect on the conduct of the war and inevitably will seriously embarrass us in other matters in other theaters. The effect would be particularly deplorable at this time when we are making headway in getting the British to accept increasingly more responsibility for Japan's defeat.84
Though progress may have been made in securing increased British interest in the war against Japan, it was difficult to detect any noticeable change in their  

basic attitude toward China. They continued to demonstrate their disinclination to operate on the major U.S. premise that it was important to keep China in the war. As the Joint War Plans Committee pointed out just before QUADRANT:
The basic difference between the two planning groups (U.S. and British), which required constant compromise, is the different evaluation placed on the importance of keeping China in the war.85
The committee went on to point out that the British position implied unwillingness to run major risks simply to assist the Chinese. Indeed, the British position implied that China was not indispensable in the war. Fundamentally, the JWPC continued, the British were guided by their desire to re-establish the prestige of the British Empire in the Far East. With this aim the United States had no quarrel, but the British realized that it would entail not only the consent but also the active military aid of the United States. Therefore, the British wished a campaign to capture the Burma-Singapore area and points beyond to be a combined effort and in line with this notion were in favor of substituting Formosa for China as the future base of operations against Japan. In conclusion, the JWPC underlined the decision it felt had to be made. The U.S. stand was built around the concept that China would be valuable as a future base of operations and visualized the use of Chinese forces in later operations. If this view were valid, tremendous efforts by both the United States and Great Britain would have to be made; if, on the other hand, the British view were to prevail, planning for the defeat of Japan should be modified accordingly and the whole Burma operation should be reevaluated.86 The mutual distrust between China and Great Britain and the increasing signs of doubt manifested by the British in the need for Burma operations did little to encourage the Washington planners.
Planning the Over-All War Against Japan
Side by side with planning for specific operations in the Pacific and Far East for the coming year, a new trend gained strength in Washington military planning-the intensive search for a long-range, over-all strategic concept and plan for the defeat of Japan. This was a natural outgrowth of the decision at TRIDENT to accept the U.S. appreciation of the Japanese war as a basis for future study and elaboration on the combined planning level. The limitations to all long-range planning remained constant, but, as General Hull put the case of the War Department planners:
Until a firm decision is made with respect to the use of our resources against each of these nations [Germany and Japan], a proper distribution of the available means to our different theaters cannot be made. Specifically, I mean that until a final decision is made and adhered to with respect to an over-all plan of campaign against Japan, we will continue to find ourselves in the position of being unable to logically  

determine what means should be dispatched to the various theaters of the Pacific, and to India and China .... Until the plan for the conduct of the war against Japan is decided upon, we are in an indefensible position whenever a question is raised concerning the dispatch of troops to various theaters bordering upon Japan. The decision is made piece-meal, and without full consideration of the effect the dispatch of such troops will have on the main effort of the campaign . . . . Initially, both the Japanese and the German Axis held the initiative. For this reason, it has been necessary that the War Department meet the requirements of the various theaters on a day-to-day basis. That this has been uneconomical is realized by all. We now have the initiative and are in a position to maintain it. The application of our resources to the conduct of the war is, therefore, of our own choosing. As our resources are not unlimited, and as our enemies are both strong, it is essential to a successful outcome of the war that our means be applied in an economical manner. We cannot afford extravagance.87
Despite the lack of firm decisions, the joint planners and the joint War Plans Committee went ahead with their planning during the summer of 1943.88 The dealings of the joint planners with their British counterparts brought home again the fact that the latter did not share the U.S. perspective on the value of Burma operations. Given this disagreement and the fact that the bulk of the men and resources deployed against Japan was American, the joint planners advised the JCS that it was most important that the United States retain its leadership in planning the war against Japan.89
The American planners' efforts at long-range planning in the summer of 1943 were concentrated in two fields, both in preparation for the next plenary session of the CCS: outlining specific operations to be carried out through 1944, and development of an appreciation of the over-all war against Japan. The planners worked on the assumptions that Italy would be knocked out of the war in 1943 and Germany in the fall of 1944, and that the USSR would enter the war against Japan only when it could do so at small cost to itself. They relied on the joint Intelligence Committee estimate that, barring radical changes in the over-all situation, Japan could be expected to remain on the strategic defensive.90
The joint planners proceeded to draw up a tentative schedule for the war against Japan through the end of 1944 and provided the JCS with their estimates of -the forces and means required. (See Table 1.) The outstanding feature of this joint plan was the provision for the neutralization of Rabaul in spite of all the protestations of MacArthur and his staff that Rabaul must be captured. The actions planned in the Southwest and Central Pacific areas should aim at reaching the Vogelkop-Palau line by the end of 1944 and should progress on a mutual support basis. In the North Pacific, the JPS believed, the seizure of   

Target Date Central Pacific Southwest Pacific China, Burma, and India
 15 August 1943 Kiska      
 1 September 1943   Lae-Madang    
 15 October 1943     Buin-Faisi    
 1 November 1943     (1) Upper Burma
(2) Akyab-Ramree
 15 November 1943 Gilberts      
 1 December 1943    (1) W. New Britain
(2) Kieta
(3) Buka (neutralize)
 1 January 1944 Marshalls       
 1 February 1944    (1) Rabaul (neutralize)
(2) Wewak
 1 May 1944   Kavieng    
 1 June 1944 Ponape   Manus    
 1 August 1944    Hollandia    
 1 September 1944 Truk      
 15 September 1944   Wakde  
 15 October 1944   Japen Island  
 1 November 1944     Complete Burma
 30 November 1944   Manokwari  
 31 December 1944 Palau      
Source: JCS 446, 6 Aug 43, title: Specific Operations in the Pacific and Far East.
Kiska would pave the way for possible operations against the Kurils.91
While the specific operations and schedules were being worked out on a joint level, the Combined Staff Planners brought forth an over-all appreciation of the war against Japan. Following the TRIDENT Conference a team of U.S. inter-service planners had spent several weeks in London discussing the strategy of the war against Japan with British planners.92 After the team returned to the United States and a British planning team visited Washington, the Combined planners submitted their report. Bombardment, encirclement, and blockade were to be relied upon to defeat Japan. Cautiously, they predicted that it might be necessary to invade Japan to destroy the capacity of its people to resist. In the meantime, recognizing the dependence of the enemy's position upon his fleet, every opportunity should be taken to bring about its decisive defeat. The Allies should make full use of their air arm against the Japanese air forces and against Japanese industrial resources, shipping, and targets in the homeland. Little aid could be expected against Japan from the USSR until late in the war. Although the Allies should en-  

courage China to contribute as much as possible to the war effort, they should not bank too heavily on results from that source.
In support of the U.S. Navy view, the Combined planners recommended that, in the Pacific, the Central Pacific approach to Japan should become the main effort, with operations in SWPA and the Aleutians assuming subsidiary roles. In the Far East, they agreed, China should be kept in the war and Burma should be retaken. The Americans and the British agreed that north Burma should be captured, but differed on the timing of the operations in south Burma. The British preferred a drive on Singapore after north Burma was seized, whereas the Americans favored clearing south Burma first. In either case, Pacific and Asiatic drives should be coordinated insofar as possible to ensure mutual support. The advance from the east, primarily with large naval forces, and the advance from the west, primarily with large land and air forces, would converge in the Hong Kong-Formosa area. Hong Kong, if recaptured, would offer important port facilities and a foothold on the China coast. A move could then be made to seize Formosa. Other strategic positions that might be captured, if the seizure of Hong Kong and Formosa proved to be impracticable, included Luzon, Hainan, and one of the Ryukyus. Once a port on the China coast or on the island of Formosa was in Allied hands, long-range strategic bombardment of Japan could begin. At the same time, operations to move closer to Japan could be undertaken in preparation for the final invasion.
As to timing, the planners felt that by the end of 1944 the advance through the Pacific should have reached the Palaus and the advance from the west should have secured possession of most of north Burma. The Philippines, Formosa, the Ryukyus, and Malaya were targets for 1945 and 1946. Final operations against Japan proper would commence in 1947 and extend into the following year.93
To Admiral Cooke, the chief Navy planner, this combined plan appeared to have many faults. Pointing out that the over-all objective accepted at TRIDENT envisioned the defeat of all the Axis nations in the shortest possible time, he observed that there were two alternatives: (1) defeat Germany in 1944 and Japan in 1948 or (2) redistribute forces and defeat both countries in 1946. The latter choice would be more in accord with the TRIDENT objective. Were the Japanese to hold out until 1948, Admiral Cooke believed that the American desire to continue the war would lessen and the Japanese would evade defeat. The British planners could not accept the second alternative and suggested that any such decision would have to be made at a higher level.94 Since Cooke's interpretation but gave voice to the consistent U.S. desire to shorten the Pacific war, the issue would have to be settled on the top British and American levels.
The increasing concern over the need for long-range planning, which had been

growing among the American planners since the Casablanca Conference, began to produce results during the summer of 1943, but the planners still lacked the basic high-level Allied decisions to enable them to develop firm and definite plans. The Combined planners had made preliminary progress in defining areas of agreement and disagreement. Until Allied policy and planning were closely linked, this was as far as the planners could go. It was evident to the U.S. planners that the formulation, and even the acceptance, of plans did not mean scheduled operations would follow automatically in the Pacific and CBI. It appeared that at the forthcoming conference the British once again would have to be convinced of the value of China to the war effort. If a land offensive were to be launched in November, fresh impetus would have to be supplied and additional pressure brought to bear upon the British and Chinese.
Insofar as the war against Japan was concerned, planning and preparations for the six major projects, which claimed the greater part of the Army staff's attention during the interval between TRIDENT and QUADRANT, went forward with varying success. On the positive side, the Central Pacific offensive was set up and the continuation of the South-Southwest Pacific drive was approved, for the present on an equal basis. The Japanese evacuation of Kiska had made the goal of clearing the enemy from the Aleutians almost embarrassingly simple. In the CBI, the slow development of the airlift had been frustrating but deceptive, since the difficult preparatory stage was just about over and swift improvement was in the offing. The China air war had brought no decision. The most discouraging prospect was the dim outlook for the Burma operation. Varying policies and interests of the Allied countries-the United States, Great Britain, and China-continued to compound an already muddled situation. Considered as a whole, the trend, except for Burma, was definitely forward, with the pendulum swinging more strongly in favor of the Allies as time and superior resources worked to their advantage. In order to meet the requirements of the theater commanders for maintaining the initiative, inflicting additional attrition, and attaining strategic positions for later offensives against Japan, the War Department had actually dispatched almost 110,000 men in the two months following TRIDENT-87,000 to the Pacific, 1,600 to the CBI, and 19,000 to Alaska.95 Such was the cost in U.S. military manpower, in midsummer 1943, of attempting to keep the struggle with Japan a dynamic but limited war.
Impressed with the necessity of achieving the delicate balance and proper timing in the global deployment of forces to maintain the strategic initiative now possessed against the two major foes, War Department planners began to generate pressure for a firm and early decision on a basic over-all plan against Japan. Their action was reminiscent of similar pressure brought by the War Department for agreement on an over-all plan for the European conflict in early 1942. But in place of the unique role the War Department had played in developing and supporting its "brain-child"-the BOLERO-ROUNDUP plan-in that essentially defensive and garrisoning phase of 

the global war, it was now to find itself but one of several contributors to the maturing joint and combined systems, where over-all blueprints in the war against Japan were being debated and devised.
As might have been expected, the first efforts in the early summer of 1943 to formulate over-all long-range plans on the combined planning level showed only preliminary, tentative results. The upshot was a valuable, if as yet somewhat academic, exercise in coalition planning against the second of the two major foes. Basic foundations for coalition planning against Japan were lacking, and would continue to be, until firm decisions were made on the European war at higher levels. Even in this regard the outlook, while not immediately encouraging, was not completely dismal. There was reason to hope that a more definite basis for long-term planning against Japan might soon be supplied as a result of the final showdown on the strategy against Germany the U.S. staff was determined to force at QUADRANT.


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