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About Robert C. Stern
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By the beginning of May 1942, five months after the Pearl Harbor attack, the US Navy was ready to challenge the Japanese moves in the South Pacific. When the Japanese sent troops to New Guinea and the Solomon Islands, the Americans sent the carriers Lexington and Yorktown to counter the move, setting the stage for the Battle of the Coral Sea.
In Scratch One Flattop: The First Carrier Air Campaign and the Battle of the Coral Sea, historian Robert C. Stern analyzes the Battle of the Coral Sea, the first major fleet engagement where the warships were never in sight of each other. Unlike the Battle of Midway, the Battle of the Coral Sea has received remarkably little study. Stern covers not only the action of the ships and their air groups but also describes the impact of this pivotal engagement. His analysis looks at the short-term impact as well as the long-term implications, including the installation of inert gas fuel-system purging on all American aircraft carriers and the push to integrate sensor systems with fighter direction to better protect against enemy aircraft.
The essential text on the first carrier air campaign, Scratch One Flattop is a landmark study on an overlooked battle in the first months of the United States' engagement in World War II.
This naval history of WWII explores the advancing technology and tactics of battleships through a fascinating survey of ship-to-ship duels.While many naval battles of the Second World War were decided by the torpedo or the aerial bomb, there was a surprising number of traditional ship-to-ship engagements involving the big guns of battleships and cruisers. Big Gun Battles recounts some of the most significant and technically fascinating of these gunfire duels in a narrative that combines lively storytelling with an in-depth understanding of the factors influencing victory or defeat.
Covering all theatres of the naval war from 1939 until the Japanese surrender, the selected incidents demonstrate the changing face of surface warfare under the influence of rapidly improving fire-control systems, radar, and other technologies. By 1945, battleships achieved the pinnacle of gunnery excellence.