The Invasion of Iwo Jima: February 19, 1945

By | February 19, 2023

[February 19, 2023]   Today is the anniversary of the first day of the invasion of Iwo Jima during World War 2.  Of all the battles, this is one of the most famous and most brutal.  But the battle gave the Allies a wake-up call of what was to come as our forces closed on mainland Japan.

Four days after the invasion, on February 23, 1945, atop Mount Suribachi, photographer Joe Rosenthal captured the image of six Marines raising an unfurling American flag.

This battle would be one of the bloodiest battles the United States Marines ever and will ever have fought.  The Marine Memorial in Washington D.C. commemorates the flag raising on Mt. Suribachi.  I knew several Marines that were in the Iwo Jima invasion and battle.  Their stories and courage are both terrifying and inspiring.

The island of Iwo Jima was part of the Tokyo prefecture before the war, and the Japanese fought tenaciously against the first American penetration of their home soil.  Their strategy was to force such vicious bloodshed that the Americans might be deterred from invading the Japanese home islands.

Fighting was often hand to hand, in a savage close-quarter effort that was fought with flamethrowers and grenades among tunnels, caves, and bunkers.  The stark courage displayed on Iwo Jim led Admiral Chester Nimitz to famously reflect that “Uncommon valor was a common virtue” before the battle was even over.

The war’s final year for the Japanese was one of wholesale death and destruction.  Japan’s leaders started two wars they could not end; China in 1937 and the United States in December 1941.  From the Emperor to the lowest soldier, they were caught up in the stranglehold of their wars of choice, trapped by their own propaganda, paralyzed by a blood debt to those who died in the lost cause, and blind to the rage of the enemy.

Japan had no real strategy except to escalate the killing and dying in the hope that their fanatical efforts would persuade U.S. and British leaders to abandon their plans for invading the home islands and demand of unconditional surrender.

This was wishful thinking.  The results of the battles of Iwo Jima and others like Okinawa were to strengthen the Allied resolve to intensify the bombing campaigns of Japanese cities.  As it turned out, the very consequence of their suicidal policies led to the deployment of nuclear weapons.

Nearly every member of the Japanese garrison was killed; 20,700.  The cost was fierce.  U.S. military deaths numbered 6,800, with another 20,000 wounded.


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Author: Douglas R. Satterfield

Hello. I provide one article every day. My writings are influenced by great thinkers such as Friedrich Nietzsche, Karl Jung, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Jean Piaget, Erich Neumann, and Jordan Peterson, whose insight and brilliance have gotten millions worldwide to think about improving ourselves. Thank you for reading my blog.

17 thoughts on “The Invasion of Iwo Jima: February 19, 1945

  1. Greg NH

    From WWII of heroes to today’s mental defectives in government and on school boards. What’s happening to our country is not good?

    1. American Girl

      … and, as well, they are encouraging racism, segregation, privileged, lying, theft (if you are a good guy stealing), misleading parents of school kids, and a host of domestic issues like open borders, more inflation, skyrocketing prices on basic foods like eggs, teaching people it’s okay to be LGBTQ-I stwxyz, and that if you oppose immoral behavior, then you are immoral. Joe Biden at his best.

  2. Ron C.

    One day we would like to hear some of their stories, Gen. Satterfield.
    ” I knew several Marines that were in the Iwo Jima invasion and battle. Their stories and courage are both terrifying and inspiring”

    1. Dead Pool Guy

      It is, indeed, important to remember this as part of important historical events because we can learn from them.

      1. Blaze X

        Humpff, the battle was shocking to Americans but just a blip on the radar for the Japanese. Their homeland was being crushed by the US air corps.

      2. Randolph Swartz

        We no longer teach history. We now teach ideological slogans and how to protest against the “ white patriarchy.” Of course, anyone with a brain can see this is teaching of hate and racial superiority just like the Nazis of Germany.

  3. Watson Bell

    “Nearly every member of the Japanese garrison was killed; 20,700. The cost was fierce. U.S. military deaths numbered 6,800, with another 20,000 wounded.” Was this a lopsided victory? Yes, but that is the point. The Japanese needed to understand that the US was going to totally destroy Japan. That message had to be hard and Iwo Jim was an example of what was to come.

  4. Emma Archambeau

    Let’s see now, who is the hero? A US Marine on Iwo Jima or Jane Fonda. Hmmmmm, that is not a hard choice to make. Hero vs. Traitor. Clean, easy, no-brainer. But half the women in America think Jane Fonda is a hero. Mental illness? Yep.

    1. Bryan Z. Lee

      Excellent point Emma. Now, we need to consistently tell folks that Jane Fonda is a traitor. Yes, I know she is a hypocrite and all that, and a whacko liberal, and a nutjob all rolled into one. But stay focused people and always say to others that Jane Fonda is an American traitor on par with Benedict Arnold.

      1. Desert Cactus

        Hey Bryan, good thinking. Always hit the main point first and hardest.


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