The Marines Raise the Flag on Mount Suribachi
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Iwo Jima 1945
One of the decisive battles of the Second World War in the Pacific, Iwo Jima was described by Lt General Holand Smith, the overall Marine Commander, as 'the toughest fight in the 169 years of our corps' - a titanic struggle of savagery that eclipsed all that had gone before. The island was of major strategic importance to the US Air Force, but also to the Japanese 20,000 of whom were deeply entrenched in the island, and to whom surrender was not an option. The loss of Iwo Jima was proof to the Japanese that the Americans could seize one of the world's most heavily defended islands.
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