Iwo Jima Bolt Action
Waiting in their troop carriers offshore the Special Marine Assault Force ASL sharpened K-Bars while they planned their attack on the island with the newest intel that they just received on the landing beach. This savage gang of hard-core dice rollers plotted death and destruction to the Japanese occupiers.
The Tea & Victory Galley turned out a great meal for the Marines before they headed in, Fish & Chips, Chicken Tika Masala, Fried Baloney sandwich and beer! Making sure everyone was well fortified with their favorite, after hitting the beach who knows when or where their next hot meal was coming from. Or would this be their last…
Naval bombardment started a little late but hit the Japanese hard, raining those heavy shells down on the island, beaches and hard points, pinning most of their first line of defense. Go Navy big guns!!!
The rough seas, the reef and midshipman Murphy, scrambled the Marine carefully made plans to land on the specific Red Dog beaches to work their way through the strong points in the best approach possible. After the initial confusion of landing in the wrong place, a few mumbled about the typical Navy abilities deliver them in the right place, the Marines poured ashore and across the sand looking for Japanese to kill.
The Marines move and shoot kept the Japanese pinned in their hard points and Bunkers as they moved forward up the beach. All the time pouring fire, as if on the training grounds, into the numerous bunkers, trenches and emplacements the Japanese had laid out as they crossed the open ground.
Before the first LVT could get off the beach, with a squad of Marine hunkered down inside, the 47mm antitank gun found range and sliced into the full vehicle. The Marines learned while armored these things aren’t tanks! This knocked out the LVT, but wasn’t powerful enough to impact the passengers. The Marines were forced to disembark onto the open sand, but didn’t take too many casualties.
The Army Air Corp seemed to be more interested in hunting for Zeros or keeping Kamikazes away from the fleet. Every time it took repeated calls from the AO to dial in an attack on one of the Japanese strong-points. Next time bring a Marine or Navy AO who could get a more immediate response for the guys taking the fire…
There were stories, one of those myths that seem to be formed in battle, of a sailor from Colorado who had joined up with the Japanese defenders. If he existed his body was never found, maybe he just sailed away, continuing his journey elsewhere.
Those pesky Japanese kept popping up in the rear and from the sides where the Marine had thought they had cleared everything out. To add injury to insult the FO’s called in artillery bombardment that fell short of the bunker and onto the Marines preparing to assault it. So much for a little help from the Destroyers offshore, the marines were going to have to do this themselves! Shortly they stormed the bunker and cleared out the remaining defenders, silencing the machine-gun for good.
The second LVT turn the corner hosing down a strong-point with a hail of MMG fire but at a cost of having track blown off by the AT gun with before the Marines were able to storm the next line of defense bunker and taking out the pesky gun.
The Japanese snipers began to take their toll as the Marines advanced deeper, pushing to clear out all of the bunkers and stay on their timeline. The squad NCO were targeted by the dastardly sneaky devils! But this did not stop or slow down those hard fighting Marines, fortified with another round of beers that somehow made it ashore. Those Marines are very ingenious in this way, maybe it is how they got that special assault force title, ASL, Always Serving Libations! There were also sightings of some Marines eating a strange rice cake snack that either they had scavenged from an overrun bunker or sneaked from the Tea & Victory galley. One wonders if the Marine unit was raised by emptying a jail or prison somewhere…
True to form the Japanese launched several Banzai attacks as the Marines moved inland. However, they learned charging into smoke cloud against flamethrowers doesn’t end well. The Marines really didn’t need to aim and just let the charging Japanese run into a wall of flames. When the smoke cleared only the Marines were left standing and not smoldering. But when the smoke cleared those snipers zeroed in on the flame boys to even the score…
A crazed Japanese soldier with an antitank mined strapped to the end of a bamboo pole came charging across the scrub towards the demobilized LVT only to be cut to ribbons short of his target. These fanatic Japanese soldiers just don’t seem to care if they live, only looking to die for the Emperor! Or was it the sake’?
The Marines approached the final cave complex, their finial objective. They had taken casualties and had to leave men behind to guard against the damn Japanese that had a habit of popping up in the rear. Moving up the slope they were caught in vicious crossfire from the final line of defense and cut up with LMG and MMG fire seeming to come right out of the mountain its self.
All the time as the Marines were advancing the AO was frantically call in air support to give them cover or at least make the Japanese keep their heads down so the squad could get close enough to assault the caves. As before it took several calls before the fly-boys finally showed up and in the final act of the offensive was only able to blast away at the rock face. When the dust settled the machine guns nests were still there pouring fire out of their holes and crevasse down the slope at the Marines. Keeping them just short of their objective for Day 1, as it became too dark to continue the advance…
It was a long battle, hard fought with camaraderie holding both sides together and the beer was good! Stay tuned, next time the Marines with some armor support will move inland to clear the island of Japanese defenders in round two of island hopping!
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