Good reference, yet missing key issues
Brandi | Livermore, CA | 01/03/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"As a Battle of Okinawa hobbyist and current resident of the island, I spend a lot of time reading about, visiting and talking to knowledgable people about the battle for Okinawa. I found this video to have some great video clips, and described the importance of the battle well, but since it was made for the 50th anniversary of the battle (1995), it is full of melodramatic comments and pro-US biased journalism. It tries to show aspects of the battle that were down and dirty, but doesn't capture the misery and absolute necessity to win that all three sides had to deal with, which makes it entertainment, not education. In fact, the Okinawan locals or 3rd side, is only referenced in the last few minutes of the show as only casualty numbers. Now if the Allies lost 13,000, and the Japanese lost 130,000, and the people who lived on the island lost 310,000, then I say that a little more should be said about what role they played. I think this show is valuable to have for a collector of battle of Okinawa memorabilia, but should not be relied on for a sole educational purpose. If you are really interested in a great wartime read, look into the myriad of great books available like The Battle of Okinawa by George Feifer, The Girl with the White Flag by Tomiko Higa or the online text, Okinawa: The Last Battle by Roy E. Appleman, James M. Burns, Russell A. Gugeler, and John Stevens."
Missing The All Important Third Element!
Ernest Jagger | Culver City, California | 12/03/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"The reviewer Brandi "spookyjimjams", below, of Okinawa, has given a very good summary of this particular DVD from the History Channel. The Battle of Okinawa was one of the most important engagments to take place in the Pacific Theatre during WWII. Yet, it has never been given the full treatment it not only deserves, but is glossed over in too many documentaries. The battle has remained in the shadow of Iwo Jima, which took place a few months before the Battle of Okinawa, and this is a shame; because there was so much loss of life on this particular Japanese Island. Plus, the use of Kamikaze pilots in attacking the US Navy was some of the most intense the war ever saw. And more importantly, the Third Element--the civilians, are hardly mentioned in passing.
As the reviewer below stated in his article, this project was brought together to honor the 50th anniversary of the battle. However, he makes a good case in pointing out that the war left out a third side. The civilians whose deaths accounted for more of the casualties than either the Japanese military and US military combined. The misery and suffering that the civilian population on the island had to endure is left out, and only the numbers of casualties are mentioned. More needs to be done on this much overlooked battle. Afterall, the casualties and ferocious fighting which took place on this island directly led to the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki."