The Pacific Ocean is the largest and deepest of Earth's oceanic divisions. It extends from the Arctic Ocean in the north to the Southern Ocean in the south and is bounded by Asia and Australia in the west and the Americas in the east. At 165,250,000 square kilometers in area, this largest division of the World Ocean—and, in turn, the hydrosphere—covers about 46% of Earth's water surface and about one-third of its total surface area, making it larger than all of Earth's land area combined; the centers of both the Water Hemisphere and the Western Hemisphere are in the Pacific Ocean. The equator subdivides it into the North Pacific Ocean and South Pacific Ocean, with two exceptions: the Galápagos and Gilbert Islands, while straddling the equator, are deemed wholly within the South Pacific, its mean depth is 4,000 meters. The Mariana Trench in the western North Pacific is the deepest point in the world, reaching a depth of 10,911 meters; the western Pacific has many peripheral seas. Though the peoples of Asia and Oceania have traveled the Pacific Ocean since prehistoric times, the eastern Pacific was first sighted by Europeans in the early 16th century when Spanish explorer Vasco Núñez de Balboa crossed the Isthmus of Panama in 1513 and discovered the great "southern sea" which he named Mar del Sur.
The ocean's current name was coined by Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan during the Spanish circumnavigation of the world in 1521, as he encountered favorable winds on reaching the ocean. He called it Mar Pacífico, which in both Portuguese and Spanish means "peaceful sea". Important human migrations occurred in the Pacific in prehistoric times. About 3000 BC, the Austronesian peoples on the island of Taiwan mastered the art of long-distance canoe travel and spread themselves and their languages south to the Philippines and maritime Southeast Asia. Long-distance trade developed all along the coast from Mozambique to Japan. Trade, therefore knowledge, extended to the Indonesian islands but not Australia. By at least 878 when there was a significant Islamic settlement in Canton much of this trade was controlled by Arabs or Muslims. In 219 BC Xu Fu sailed out into the Pacific searching for the elixir of immortality. From 1404 to 1433 Zheng He led expeditions into the Indian Ocean; the first contact of European navigators with the western edge of the Pacific Ocean was made by the Portuguese expeditions of António de Abreu and Francisco Serrão, via the Lesser Sunda Islands, to the Maluku Islands, in 1512, with Jorge Álvares's expedition to southern China in 1513, both ordered by Afonso de Albuquerque from Malacca.
The east side of the ocean was discovered by Spanish explorer Vasco Núñez de Balboa in 1513 after his expedition crossed the Isthmus of Panama and reached a new ocean. He named it Mar del Sur because the ocean was to the south of the coast of the isthmus where he first observed the Pacific. In 1519, Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan sailed the Pacific East to West on a Spanish expedition to the Spice Islands that would result in the first world circumnavigation. Magellan called the ocean Pacífico because, after sailing through the stormy seas off Cape Horn, the expedition found calm waters; the ocean was called the Sea of Magellan in his honor until the eighteenth century. Although Magellan himself died in the Philippines in 1521, Spanish Basque navigator Juan Sebastián Elcano led the remains of the expedition back to Spain across the Indian Ocean and round the Cape of Good Hope, completing the first world circumnavigation in a single expedition in 1522. Sailing around and east of the Moluccas, between 1525 and 1527, Portuguese expeditions discovered the Caroline Islands, the Aru Islands, Papua New Guinea.
In 1542–43 the Portuguese reached Japan. In 1564, five Spanish ships carrying 379 explorers crossed the ocean from Mexico led by Miguel López de Legazpi, sailed to the Philippines and Mariana Islands. For the remainder of the 16th century, Spanish influence was paramount, with ships sailing from Mexico and Peru across the Pacific Ocean to the Philippines via Guam, establishing the Spanish East Indies; the Manila galleons operated for two and a half centuries, linking Manila and Acapulco, in one of the longest trade routes in history. Spanish expeditions discovered Tuvalu, the Marquesas, the Cook Islands, the Solomon Islands, the Admiralty Islands in the South Pacific. In the quest for Terra Australis, Spanish explorations in the 17th century, such as the expedition led by the Portuguese navigator Pedro Fernandes de Queirós, discovered the Pitcairn and Vanuatu archipelagos, sailed the Torres Strait between Australia and New Guinea, named after navigator Luís Vaz de Torres. Dutch explorers, sailing around southern Africa engaged in discovery and trade.
In the 16th and 17th centuries Spain considered the Pacific Ocean a mare clausum—a sea closed to other naval powers. As the only known entrance from the Atlantic, the Strait of Magellan was at times patrolled by fleets sent to prevent entrance of non-Spanish ships. On the western side of the Pacific Ocean the Dutch threatened the Spanish Philippines; the 18th cen
In naval terminology, a destroyer is a fast, maneuverable long-endurance warship intended to escort larger vessels in a fleet, convoy or battle group and defend them against smaller powerful short-range attackers. They were developed in the late 19th century by Fernando Villaamil for the Spanish Navy as a defense against torpedo boats, by the time of the Russo-Japanese War in 1904, these "torpedo boat destroyers" were "large and powerfully armed torpedo boats designed to destroy other torpedo boats". Although the term "destroyer" had been used interchangeably with "TBD" and "torpedo boat destroyer" by navies since 1892, the term "torpedo boat destroyer" had been shortened to "destroyer" by nearly all navies by the First World War. Before World War II destroyers were light vessels with little endurance for unattended ocean operations. After the war, the advent of the guided missile allowed destroyers to take on the surface combatant roles filled by battleships and cruisers; this resulted in larger and more powerful guided missile destroyers more capable of independent operation.
At the start of the 21st century, destroyers are the global standard for surface combatant ships, with only two nations operating the heavier class cruisers, with no battleships or true battlecruisers remaining. Modern guided missile destroyers are equivalent in tonnage but vastly superior in firepower to cruisers of the World War II era, are capable of carrying nuclear tipped cruise missiles. At 510 feet long, a displacement of 9,200 tons, with armament of more than 90 missiles, guided missile destroyers such as the Arleigh Burke-class are larger and more armed than most previous ships classified as guided missile cruisers; some European navies, such as the French, Spanish, or German, use the term "frigate" for their destroyers, which leads to some confusion. The emergence and development of the destroyer was related to the invention of the self-propelled torpedo in the 1860s. A navy now had the potential to destroy a superior enemy battle fleet using steam launches to fire torpedoes. Cheap, fast boats armed with torpedoes called torpedo boats were built and became a threat to large capital ships near enemy coasts.
The first seagoing vessel designed to launch the self-propelled Whitehead torpedo was the 33-ton HMS Lightning in 1876. She was armed with two drop collars to launch these weapons, these were replaced in 1879 by a single torpedo tube in the bow. By the 1880s, the type had evolved into small ships of 50–100 tons, fast enough to evade enemy picket boats. At first, the threat of a torpedo boat attack to a battle fleet was considered to exist only when at anchor. In response to this new threat, more gunned picket boats called "catchers" were built which were used to escort the battle fleet at sea, they needed significant seaworthiness and endurance to operate with the battle fleet, as they became larger, they became designated "torpedo boat destroyers", by the First World War were known as "destroyers" in English. The anti-torpedo boat origin of this type of ship is retained in its name in other languages, including French, Portuguese, Greek, Dutch and, up until the Second World War, Polish. Once destroyers became more than just catchers guarding an anchorage, it was realized that they were ideal to take over the role of torpedo boats themselves, so they were fitted with torpedo tubes as well as guns.
At that time, into World War I, the only function of destroyers was to protect their own battle fleet from enemy torpedo attacks and to make such attacks on the battleships of the enemy. The task of escorting merchant convoys was still in the future. An important development came with the construction of HMS Swift in 1884 redesignated TB 81; this was a large torpedo boat with three torpedo tubes. At 23.75 knots, while still not fast enough to engage enemy torpedo boats reliably, the ship at least had the armament to deal with them. Another forerunner of the torpedo boat destroyer was the Japanese torpedo boat Kotaka, built in 1885. Designed to Japanese specifications and ordered from the Glasgow Yarrow shipyards in 1885, she was transported in parts to Japan, where she was assembled and launched in 1887; the 165-foot long vessel was armed with four 1-pounder quick-firing guns and six torpedo tubes, reached 19 knots, at 203 tons, was the largest torpedo boat built to date. In her trials in 1889, Kotaka demonstrated that she could exceed the role of coastal defense, was capable of accompanying larger warships on the high seas.
The Yarrow shipyards, builder of the parts for Kotaka, "considered Japan to have invented the destroyer". The first vessel designed for the explicit purpose of hunting and destroying torpedo boats was the torpedo gunboat. Small cruisers, torpedo gunboats were equipped with torpedo tubes and an adequate gun armament, intended for hunting down smaller enemy boats. By the end of the 1890s torpedo gunboats were made obsolete by their more successful contemporaries, the torpedo boat destroyers, which were much faster; the first example of this was HMS Rattlesnake, designed by Nathaniel Barnaby in 1885, commissioned in response to the Russian War scare. The gunboat was armed with torpedoes and designed for hunting and destroying
War of 1812
The War of 1812 was a conflict fought between the United States, the United Kingdom, their respective allies from June 1812 to February 1815. Historians in Britain see it as a minor theater of the Napoleonic Wars. From the outbreak of war with Napoleonic France, Britain had enforced a naval blockade to choke off neutral trade to France, which the US contested as illegal under international law. To man the blockade, Britain impressed American merchant sailors into the Royal Navy. Incidents such as the Chesapeake–Leopard affair, which happened five years before the war, inflamed anti-British sentiment in the US. In 1811, the British were in turn outraged by the Little Belt affair, in which 11 British sailors died. Britain supplied Native Americans who raided American settlers on the frontier, hindering American expansion and provoking resentment. Historians debate whether the desire to annex some or all of British North America contributed to the American decision to go to war. On June 18, 1812, US President James Madison, after heavy pressure from the War Hawks in Congress, signed the American declaration of war into law.
With most of its army in Europe fighting Napoleon, Britain adopted a defensive strategy, with offensive operations limited to the border, the western frontier. American prosecution of the war effort suffered from its unpopularity in New England, where it was derogatorily referred to as "Mr. Madison's War". American defeats at the Siege of Detroit and the Battle of Queenston Heights thwarted attempts to seize Upper Canada, improving British morale. American attempts to invade Lower Canada and capture Montreal failed. In 1813, the Americans won the Battle of Lake Erie, gaining control of the lake, at the Battle of the Thames defeated Tecumseh's Confederacy, securing a primary war goal. A final American attempt to invade Canada was fought to a draw at the Battle of Lundy's Lane during the summer of 1814. At sea, the powerful Royal Navy blockaded American ports, cutting off trade and allowing the British to raid the coast at will. In 1814, one of these raids burned the capital, but the Americans repulsed British attempts to invade New York and Maryland, ending invasions of the northern and mid-Atlantic United States from Canada.
Fighting took place overseas in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. In neighbouring Spanish Florida, a two-day battle for the city of Pensacola ended in Spanish surrender. In Britain, there was mounting opposition to wartime taxation. With the abdication of Napoleon, the war with France ended and Britain ceased impressment, rendering the issue of the impressment of American sailors moot; the British were able to increase the strength of the blockade on the United States coast, annihilating American maritime trade, but attempts to invade the U. S. ended unsuccessfully. Peace negotiations began in August 1814, the Treaty of Ghent was signed on December 24. News of the peace did not reach America for some time. Unaware of the treaty, British forces invaded Louisiana and were defeated at the Battle of New Orleans in January 1815; these late victories were viewed by Americans as having restored national honour, leading to the collapse of anti-war sentiment and the beginning of the Era of Good Feelings, a period of national unity.
News of the treaty arrived shortly thereafter. The treaty was unanimously ratified by the US Senate on February 17, 1815, ending the war with no boundary changes. Historians have long debated the relative weight of the multiple reasons underlying the origins of the War of 1812; this section summarizes several contributing factors which resulted in the declaration of war by the United States. As Risjord notes, a powerful motivation for the Americans was the desire to uphold national honour in the face of what they considered to be British insults such as the Chesapeake–Leopard affair. H. W. Brands says, "The other war hawks spoke of the struggle with Britain as a second war of independence; the approaching conflict was about violations of American rights, but it was about vindication of American identity." Americans at the time and historians since have called it the United States' "Second War of Independence". The British were offended by what they considered insults such as the Little Belt affair.
This gave the British a particular interest in capturing the United States flagship President, which they succeeded in doing in 1815. In 1807, Britain introduced a series of trade restrictions via the Orders in Council to impede neutral trade with France, which Britain was fighting in the Napoleonic Wars; the United States contested these restrictions as illegal under international law. Historian Reginald Horsman states, "a large section of influential British opinion, both in the government and in the country, thought that America presented a threat to British maritime supremacy."The American merchant marine had nearly doubled between 1802 and 1810, making it by far the largest neutral fleet. Britain was the largest trading partner, receiving 80% of U. S. cotton and 50% of other U. S. exports. The British public and press were resentful of commercial competition; the United States' view was. During the Napoleonic Wars, the Royal Navy expanded to 176 ships of the line and 600 ships overall, requiring 140,000 sailors to man.
While the Royal Navy could man its ships with volunteers in peacetime, it competed in wartime with merchant shi
Wake Island is a coral atoll in the western Pacific Ocean in the northeastern area of the Micronesia subregion, 1,501 miles east of Guam, 2,298 miles west of Honolulu, 1,991 miles southeast of Tokyo, 898 miles north of Majuro. The island is an unorganized, unincorporated territory of the United States, claimed by the Republic of the Marshall Islands. Wake Island is one of the most isolated islands in the world and the nearest inhabited island is Utirik Atoll in the Marshall Islands, 592 miles to the southeast. Wake Island, one of 14 U. S. insular areas, is administered by the United States Air Force under an agreement with the U. S. Department of the Interior; the center of activity on the atoll is at Wake Island Airfield, used as a mid-Pacific refueling stop for military aircraft and an emergency landing area. The 9,800-foot runway is the longest strategic runway in the Pacific islands. South of the runway is the Wake Island Launch Center, a missile launch site of the Ronald Reagan Ballistic Missile Defense Test Site operated by the United States Army Space and Missile Defense Command and the Missile Defense Agency.
The Base Operations Support contractor at Wake is Inc.. About 94 people live on the island, access to it is restricted. Population fluctuates depending on operations being conducted by Missile Defense Agency activities. On December 11, 1941, Wake Island was the site of the Empire of Japan's first unsuccessful attack on American forces in the Battle of Wake Island when U. S. Marines, with some US Navy personnel and civilians on the island repelled an attempted Japanese invasion, sinking two enemy destroyers and a transport; the island fell to overwhelming Japanese forces 12 days in a second attack, this one with extensive support from Japanese carrier-based aircraft returning from the attack on Pearl Harbor's naval and air bases in Hawaii further east, sixteen days previously. Wake Island remained occupied by Japanese forces until the end of the war in September 1945; the submerged and emergent lands at the atoll are a unit of the Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument. Wake island, together with eight other insular areas, comprises the United States Minor Outlying Islands, a statistical designation defined by the International Organization for Standardization's ISO 3166-1 code.
They are collectively represented by the ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 code UM. Wake Island derives its name from British sea captain Samuel Wake, who rediscovered the atoll in 1796 while in command of the Prince William Henry; the name is sometimes attributed to Capt. William Wake, reported to have discovered the atoll from the Prince William Henry in 1792. Wake is located two-thirds of the way from Honolulu to Guam. Honolulu is 2,300 statute miles to 1,510 statute miles to the west; the closest land is the uninhabited Bokak Atoll 348 mi in the Marshall Islands, to the southeast. The atoll is to the west of the International Date Line and in the Wake Island Time Zone, the easternmost time zone in the United States, one day ahead of the 50 states. Although Wake is called an island in the singular form, it is an atoll composed of three islets and a reef surrounding a central lagoon: Wake Island lies in the tropical zone, but is subject to periodic temperate storms during the winter. Sea surface temperatures are warm all year long, reaching above 80 °F in autumn.
Typhoons pass over the island. On October 19, 1940, an unnamed typhoon hit Wake Island with 120 knots winds; this was the first recorded typhoon to hit the island since observations began in 1935. Super Typhoon Olive barreled through Wake on September 1952 with wind speeds reaching 150 knots. Olive caused major flooding, destroyed 85% of its structures and caused $1.6 million in damages. On September 16, 1967, at 10:40 pm local time, the eye of Super Typhoon Sarah passed over the island. Sustained winds in the eyewall were 130 knots, from the north before the eye and from the south afterward. All non-reinforced structures were demolished. There were no serious injuries, the majority of the civilian population was evacuated after the storm. On August 28, 2006, the United States Air Force evacuated all 188 residents and suspended all operations as category 5 Super Typhoon Ioke headed toward Wake. By August 31 the southwestern eyewall of the storm passed over the island, with winds well over 185 miles per hour, driving a 20 ft storm surge and waves directly into the lagoon inflicting major damage.
A U. S. Air Force assessment and repair team returned to the island in September 2006 and restored limited function to the airfield and facilities leading to a full return to normal operations. Wake Island was first encountered by Europeans on October 2, 1568, by Spanish explorer and navigator Álvaro de Mendaña de Neyra. In 1567 Mendaña and his crew had set off on two ships, Los Reyes and Todos los Santos, from Callao, Peru, on an expedition to search for a gold-rich land in the South Pacific as mentioned in Inca tradition. After visiting Tuvalu and the Solomon Islands, the expedition headed north and came upon Wake Island, "a low barren island, judged to be eight leagues in circumference". Since the date – October 2, 1568 – was the eve of the feast of Saint Francis of Assisi, the captain named the island San Francisco; the ships were in need of water and the crew was suffering from scurvy, but after circling the island it was determined that Wake was waterless and h
A privateer is a private person or ship that engages in maritime warfare under a commission of war. The commission known as a letter of marque, empowers the person to carry on all forms of hostility permissible at sea by the usages of war, including attacking foreign vessels during wartime and taking them as prizes. Captured ships were subject to condemnation and sale under prize law, with the proceeds divided between the privateer sponsors, shipowners and crew. A percentage share went to the issuer of the commission. Since robbery under arms was once common to seaborne trade, all merchant ships were armed. During war, naval resources were auxiliary to operations on land so privateering was a way of subsidizing state power by mobilizing armed ships and sailors. In practice the legality and status of privateers has been vague. Depending on the specific government and the time period, letters of marque might be issued hastily and/or the privateers might take actions beyond what was authorized by the letters.
The privateers themselves were simply pirates who would take advantage of wars between nations to gain semi-legal status for their enterprises. By the end of the 19th century the practice of issuing letters of marque had fallen out of favor because of the chaos it caused and its role in inadvertently encouraging piracy. A privateer is similar to a mercenary except that, whereas a mercenary group receives a set fee for services and has a formal reporting structure within the entity that hires them, a privateer acts independently with no compensation unless the enemy's property is captured; the letter of marque of a privateer would limit activity to one particular ship, specified officers. The owners or captain would be required to post a performance bond. In the United Kingdom, letters of marque were revoked for various offences; some crews were treated as harshly as naval crews of the time, while others followed the comparatively relaxed rules of merchant ships. Some crews were made up of professional merchant seamen, others of pirates and convicts.
Some privateers ended up becoming pirates, not just in the eyes of their enemies but of their own nations. William Kidd, for instance, began as a legitimate British privateer but was hanged for piracy. While privateers such as Kidd were commissioned to hunt pirates, privateering itself was blamed for piracy. Privateering commissions were easy to obtain during wartime but when the war ended and privateers were recalled, many refused to give up the lucrative business and turned to piracy. Colonial officials exacerbated the problem by issuing commissions to known pirates, giving them legitimacy in exchange for a share of the profits or open bribes; the French Governor of Petit-Goave gave buccaneer Francois Grogniet blank privateering commissions, which Grogniet traded to Edward Davis for a spare ship so the two could continue raiding Spanish cities under a guise of legitimacy. New York Governors Jacob Leisler and Benjamin Fletcher were removed from office in part for their dealings with pirates such as Thomas Tew, to whom Fletcher had granted commissions to sail against the French, but who ignored his commission to raid Mughal shipping in the Red Sea instead.
Kidd himself committed piracy during his privateering voyage and was tried and executed upon his return. Boston minister Cotton Mather lamented after the execution of pirate John Quelch: "Yea, Since the Privateering Stroke, so degenerates into the Piratical. Privateers who were considered legitimate by their governments include: Francis Drake Pieter van der Does Amaro Pargo Hayreddin Barbarossa Robert Surcouf Lars Gathenhielm Entrepreneurs converted many different types of vessels into privateers, including obsolete warships and refitted merchant ships; the investors would arm the vessels and recruit large crews, much larger than a merchantman or a naval vessel would carry, in order to crew the prizes they captured. Privateers cruised independently, but it was not unknown for them to form squadrons, or to co-operate with the regular navy. A number of privateers were part of the English fleet that opposed the Spanish Armada in 1588. Privateers avoided encounters with warships, as such encounters would be at best unprofitable.
Still, such encounters did occur. For instance, in 1815 Chasseur encountered HMS St Lawrence, herself a former American privateer, mistaking her for a merchantman until too late; the United States used mixed squadrons of privateers in the American Revolutionary War. Following the French Revolution, French privateers became a menace to British and American shipping in the western Atlantic and the Caribbean, resulting in the Quasi-War, a brief conflict between France and the United States, fought at sea, to the Royal Navy's procuring Bermuda sloops to combat the French privateers; the practice dated to at least the 13th century but the word itself was coined sometime in the mid-17th century. England, the United Kingdom, used privateers to great effect and suffered much from other nations' privateering. During the 15th century, "piracy became an increasing problem and merchant communities such as Bristol began to resort to self-hel
Okinawa Prefecture is the southernmost prefecture of Japan. It encompasses two thirds of the Ryukyu Islands in a chain over 1,000 kilometres long; the Ryukyu Islands extend southwest from Kagoshima Prefecture in Kyushu to Taiwan. Naha, Okinawa's capital, is located in the southern part of Okinawa Island. Although Okinawa Prefecture comprises just 0.6 percent of Japan's total land mass, about 75 percent of all United States military personnel stationed in Japan are assigned to installations in the prefecture. About 26,000 U. S. troops are based in the prefecture. The oldest evidence of human existence on the Ryukyu islands is from the Stone Age and was discovered in Naha and Yaeyama; some human bone fragments from the Paleolithic era were unearthed from a site in Naha, but the artifact was lost in transportation before it was examined to be Paleolithic or not. Japanese Jōmon influences are dominant on the Okinawa Islands, although clay vessels on the Sakishima Islands have a commonality with those in Taiwan.
The first mention of the word Ryukyu was written in the Book of Sui. Okinawa was the Japanese word identifying the islands, first seen in the biography of Jianzhen, written in 779. Agricultural societies begun in the 8th century developed until the 12th century. Since the islands are located at the eastern perimeter of the East China Sea close to Japan and South-East Asia, the Ryukyu Kingdom became a prosperous trading nation. During this period, many Gusukus, similar to castles, were constructed; the Ryukyu Kingdom entered into the Imperial Chinese tributary system under the Ming dynasty beginning in the 15th century, which established economic relations between the two nations. In 1609, the Shimazu clan, which controlled the region, now Kagoshima Prefecture, invaded the Ryukyu Kingdom; the Ryukyu Kingdom was obliged to agree to form a suzerain-vassal relationship with the Satsuma and the Tokugawa shogunate, while maintaining its previous role within the Chinese tributary system. The Satsuma clan earned considerable profits from trade with China during a period in which foreign trade was restricted by the shogunate.
Although Satsuma maintained strong influence over the islands, the Ryukyu Kingdom maintained a considerable degree of domestic political freedom for over two hundred years. Four years after the 1868 Meiji Restoration, the Japanese government, through military incursions annexed the kingdom and renamed it Ryukyu han. At the time, the Qing Empire asserted a nominal suzerainty over the islands of the Ryukyu Kingdom, since the Ryūkyū Kingdom was a member state of the Chinese tributary system. Ryukyu han became Okinawa Prefecture of Japan in 1879 though all other hans had become prefectures of Japan in 1872. In 1912, Okinawans first obtained the right to vote for representatives to the National Diet, established in 1890. Near the end of World War II, in 1945, the US Army and Marine Corps invaded Okinawa with 185,000 troops. A third of the civilian population died; the dead, of all nationalities, are commemorated at the Cornerstone of Peace. After the end of World War II, the Ryukyu independence movement developed, while Okinawa was under United States Military Government of the Ryukyu Islands administration for 27 years.
During this "trusteeship rule", the United States established numerous military bases on the Ryukyu islands. During the Korean War, B-29 Superfortresses flew bombing missions over Korea from Kadena Air Base on Okinawa; the military buildup on the island during the Cold War increased a division between local inhabitants and the American military. Under the 1952 Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security between the United States and Japan, the United States Forces Japan have maintained a large military presence. Since 1960, the U. S. and Japan have maintained an agreement that allows the U. S. to secretly bring nuclear weapons into Japanese ports. The Japanese tended to oppose the introduction of nuclear arms into Japanese territory by the government's assertion of Japan's non-nuclear policy and a statement of the Three Non-Nuclear Principles. Most of the weapons were alleged to be stored in ammunition bunkers at Kadena Air Base. Between 1954 and 1972, 19 different types of nuclear weapons were deployed in Okinawa, but with fewer than around 1,000 warheads at any one time.
Between 1965 and 1972, Okinawa was a key staging point for the United States in its military operations directed towards North Vietnam. Along with Guam, it presented a geographically strategic launch pad for covert bombing missions over Cambodia and Laos. Anti-Vietnam War sentiment became linked politically to the movement for reversion of Okinawa to Japan. In 1965, the US military bases, earlier viewed as paternal post war protection, were seen as aggressive; the Vietnam War highlighted the differences between the United States and Okinawa, but showed a commonality between the islands and mainland Japan. As controversy grew regarding the alleged placement of nuclear weapons on Okinawa, fears intensified over the escalation of the Vietnam War. Okinawa was perceived, by some inside Japan, as a potential target for China, should the communist government feel threatened by the United States. American military secrecy blocked any local reporting on what was occurring at bases such as Kadena Air Base.
As information leaked out, images of air strikes were published, the local population began to fear the potential for retaliation. Political leaders such as Oda Makoto
5"/38 caliber gun
The Mark 12 5"/38 caliber gun was a United States naval gun. The gun was installed into Single Purpose and Dual Purpose mounts used by the US Navy. On these 5" mounts, Single Purpose means that the mount is limited to 35° elevation with no provision for AA shell fuze setters, is designed to fire at surface targets only. Dual Purpose means that it is designed to be effective against both surface and aircraft targets because it can elevate to 85° and has on mount AA shell fuze setters; the 38 caliber barrel was a mid-length compromise between the previous United States standard 5"/51 low-angle gun and 5"/25 anti-aircraft gun. United States naval gun terminology indicates the gun fired a projectile 5 inches in diameter, the barrel was 38 calibers long, making the 5"/38 dual purpose midway in barrel length between the 5"/51 surface-to-surface and the 5"/25 anti-aircraft guns; the increased barrel length provided improved performance in both anti-aircraft and anti-surface roles compared to the 5"/25 gun.
However, except for the barrel length and the use of semi-fixed ammunition, the 5"/38 gun was derived from the 5"/25 gun. Both weapons had power ramming; the 5"/38 entered service on USS Farragut, commissioned in 1934. The base ring mount, which improved the effective rate of fire, entered service on USS Gridley, commissioned in 1937. Among naval historians, the 5"/38 gun is considered the best intermediate-caliber, dual purpose naval gun of World War II as it was under the control of the advanced Mark 37 Gun Fire Control System which provided accurate and timely firing against surface and air targets; this advanced system required nearly 1000 rounds of ammunition expenditure per aircraft kill. However, the planes were killed by shell fragments and not direct hits; this would result in large walls of shell fragments being put up to take out one or several planes or in anticipation of an unseen plane, this being justifiable as one plane was capable of significant destruction. The comparatively high rate of fire for a gun of its caliber earned it an enviable reputation as an anti-aircraft weapon, in which role it was employed by United States Navy vessels.
Base ring mounts. On pedestal and other mounts lacking integral hoists, 12 to 15 rounds per minute was the rate of fire. Useful life expectancy was 4600 effective full charges per barrel; the 5"/38 cal gun was mounted on a large number of US Navy ships in the World War II era. It was backfitted to many of the World War I-era battleships during their wartime refits replacing 5"/25 guns that were fitted in the 1930s, it has left active US Navy service, but it is still on mothballed ships of the United States Navy reserve fleets. It is used by a number of nations who bought or were given US Navy surplus ships. Millions of rounds of ammunition were produced for these guns, with over 720,000 rounds still remaining in Navy storage depots in the mid-1980s because of the large number of Reserve Fleet ships with 5"/38 cal guns on board; each mount carries one or two Mk 12 5"/38cal Gun Assemblies. The gun assembly shown is used in single mounts, it is the right gun in twin mounts, it is loaded from the left side.
The left gun in twin mounts is the mirror image of the right gun, it is loaded from the right side. The Mk12 gun assembly weighs 3,990 lb; the Mark 12 Gun Assembly was introduced in 1934, where it was first used in single pedestal mounts on the Farragut-class destroyers, but by the time of World War II they had been installed in single and twin mounts on nearly every major warship and auxiliary in the US fleet. The major Mk12 Gun Assembly characteristics are::158 Semi-automatic During recoil, some of the recoil energy is stored in the counter-recoil system; that stored. The firing pin is cocked, the breech is opened, the spent propellant case is ejected, the bore is cleared of debris with an air blast. Hand loaded a powder-man are stationed at each gun assembly, their job is to move the round, consisting of a projectile and a propellant case, from the hoists to the rammer tray projecting from the gun's breech, start the ram cycle. Power rammed This gun used a 7.5 hp electric-hydraulic power rammer, designed to ram a 93 lb, 47.5 in long round into the chamber at any gun elevation in less than one second.:172 The rammer's control box, hydraulic fluid tank and AC motor are bolted to the top of the slide.
The hydraulically driven rammer spade, called the power spade in that picture, is at the back of the rammer tray. If the multiple names of the "spade" are confusing, look at this footnote. Vertical sliding-wedge breech block, it contains the firing pin assembly. Hydraulic recoil Two hydraulic pistons in the housing absorb the major shock of recoil as the housing moves back inside the slide, they buffer the end of counter-recoil for a soft return to battery. Pneumatic counter-recoil At the end of recoil, the counter-recoil system moves the housing forward again until it is back "in battery," and holds it there at any gun elevation. A chamber in the housing is filled with compressed air. At the rear of this chamber is a 3.5 in cylindrical hole with a c