Stepping Stones to Nowhere: The Aleutian Islands, Alaska, and American Military Strategy, 1867-1945

Stepping Stones to Nowhere: The Aleutian Islands, Alaska, and American Military Strategy, 1867-1945

By: Galen Roger Perras (author)Paperback

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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. W.H. Seward, the US secretary of state who brokered the purchase of Alaska, believed that the acquisition would permit the United States to dominate the Pacific. In the 1990s, Bill Clinton attempted to install an American ballistic missile defence system on the islands. But for most Americans, prior to the Second World War, the bleak and barren islands were of far less interest than the Philippines. 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. Efforts to make the area a major theatre of war rivalling Europe or the South Pacific foundered, but certainly not for lack of effort. The campaign was unique in its involvement of Britain, the Soviet Union, and Canada. 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. Thoroughly researched and accessible, this book will be invaluable to military and naval historians as well as those with a general interest in the history of the Second World War.

About Author

Galen Perras is an archivist at the National Archives of Canada and the author of Franklin Roosevelt and the Origins of the Canadian-American Security Alliance, 1933-1945.


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

Product Details

  • ISBN13: 9780774809900
  • Format: Paperback
  • Number Of Pages: 288
  • ID: 9780774809900
  • weight: 380
  • ISBN10: 0774809906

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