Far East and Pacific Theaters

General Works

A - D


Aldrich, Richard J. "Imperial Rivalry: British and American Intelligence in Asia, 1942-46." Intelligence and National Security 3, no. 1 (Jan. 1988): 5-55.

Aldrich, Richard J. Intelligence and the War Against Japan: Britain, America and the Politics of Secret Service. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2000.

According to Jonkers, AFIO WIN 23-00 (9 Jun. 2000), this work explores "the complex wartime connections between the politics of secret service and the politics of empire.... Readable ... and expertly done, for the scholar and student of political science and history." To Wiant, Studies 46.1, the author's "trenchant treatment of the achievement of strategic surprise against the British in Malaysia and Singapore and the Americans at Pearl Harbor is among the best summations in indications and warning literature."

Bath, NIPQ 16.4, notes that the geographic scope of this work is more limited than the title suggests. The work covers only Mountbatten's South East Asia Command and Stillwell's China-Burma-India Theater. Nonetheless, the author "has produced a thoughtful study of a previously unexplored aspect of Anglo-American wartime intelligence.... [I]t is not an easy read, but one that is destined to become a cornerstone of future research."

For Kruh, Cryptologia 25.2, this is a "comprehensive, scholarly history of the development of the British secret intelligence and its relations with its American counterparts during the war against Japan." The author supplies "a cogent analysis of the role of intelligence in Far Eastern developments."

Best, I&NS 16.1, notes that Aldrich's work is divided into two parts. The first, shorter portion deals with "the development of British intelligence in East and South-East Asia in the period up to December 1941." The reviewer wonders whether the author "goes a little too far in his efforts" to show that British estimates of Japanese ambitions and capabilities were not as skewed as is usually accepted. Nonetheless, "Aldrich has provided a most interesting account of the run-up to war." The second, longer portion of the work "analyses the activities of the various British and American intelligence services in the Indian, Chinese and Southeast Asian theatres during the war." Aldrich's "is clearly an important work.... There are few books that describe the activities of the intelligence community in such detail and demonstrate so clearly that intelligence is a vital aspect of decision-making."

Ardman, Harvey. "U.S. Code-breakers vs. Japanese Code-breakers in World War II." American Legion Magazine, May 1972, 18-23, 38-42.

The author covers Magic and Enigma on the Allied side and the activities of the Tokumu Han on the Japanese side. The article was published before the main revelations about Ultra. A reproduction of the Chicago Tribune's infamous dispatch on the Battle of Midway appears on p. 21.

Beaumont, Roger A. "The Flawed Soothsayer: Willoughby -- General MacArthur's G-2." Espionage 1, no. 4 (1985): 20-37.

Ben-Zvi, Abraham. "The Outlook and Termination of the Pacific War: A Juxtaposition of American Preconceptions." Journal of Peace Research 15, no. 1 (1978): 33-49. [Petersen]

Biard, Forrest R. [CAPT/USN (Ret.)] "The Pacific War Through the Eyes of Forrest R. 'Tex' Baird." Cryptolog 10, no. 2 (Winter 1989): entire issue.

Blair, Clay, Jr. Silent Victory: The U.S. Submarine War Against Japan. New York: Lippincott, 1976. New York: Bantam, 1976. [pb]

Clark comment: Intelligence is not the focus of this work; however, Blair discusses the breaking of Japanese codes from the 1920s through the war in the Pacific and the role of intelligence in targeting Japanese shipping. He did well given what was available at the time, but the book is largely outdated on the cryptologic aspects of the war.

Boyd, Carl. "American Naval Intelligence of Japanese Submarine Operations Early in the Pacific War." MHQ: The Journal of Military History 53, no. 2 (Apr. 1989): 169-189.

Briggs, Ralph T. "The Day VADM Yamagata Joined His Honorable Ancestors." Cryptolog 10, no. 5 (1989): 1-14.

Petersen: "Also in Naval History 3, no. 2 (1989): 29-35." The shotdown of Yamagata's plane was accomplished on the basis of intelligence gathered by Fleet Radio Unit China, according to a letter signed by Emil Levine in NIPQ, Spring 1996.

Brown, Kathryn E. "The Interplay of Information and Mind in Decision-Making: Signals Intelligence and Franklin D. Roosevelt's Policy-Shift on Indochina." Intelligence and National Security 13, no. 1 (Spring 1998): 109-131.

From abstract: "In 1945, after a severe decline in Roosevelt's already poor health..., his staff ... [gained] much greater influence over policy towards Indochina. As a result, intelligence on Indochina played a role in the Roosevelt administration's policy-shift toward the colony."

Campbell, Kenneth J. "Major General Charles A. Willoughby: General MacArthur's G-2 -- A Biographic Sketch." American Intelligence Journal 18, no. 1/2 (1998): 87-91.

Tracing Willoughby's career with MacArthur in World War II and in Korea, the author finds that he was "an outstanding organizer. In a very short time in 1942 he created a coordinated and effective intelligence system in the SW Pacific area from bare bones." Later, in Korea, Willoughby's "estimates on the North Korean invasion and the Chinese intervention ... [were] not faultless, along with much of the Washington establishment," but he "became the point man for criticism."

Text of a longer version of this article, through the courtesy of Dr. Campbell, is available by clicking HERE.

Clark, Thomas B. Robinson Crusoe, USN: The Adventures of George R. Tweed on Jap-Held Guam. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1945. [Petersen]

Cochran, Alexander S., Jr. "MacArthur, Ultra et la Guerre du Pacifique." Revue d'histoire de la Deuxième Guerre Mondiale et des Conflits Contemporains 34 (Jan. 1984): 17-27. See also "MacArthur, Ultra and the Pacific War, 1942-1944." In American Commanders and the Use of Signal Intelligence, ed. Arthur L. Funk. Manhatten, KS: Military Affairs/Aerospace Historian Publishing, Sunflower University Press, 1984.

Sexton notes that "Cochran emphasizes MacArthur's desire to control ULTRA and difficulties with Washington authorities."

De Graaff, Bob. "Hot Intelligence in the Tropics: Dutch Intelligence Operations in the Netherlands East Indies during the Second World War." Journal of Contemporary History 22, no. 4 (1987): 563-584. [Petersen]

Drea, Edward J. Defending the Driniumor: Covering Force Operations in New Guines, 1944. Combat Studies Institute, U.S. Army Command and General Staff College. Washington, DC: GPO, 1984. [Petersen]

Drea, Edward J. MacArthur's ULTRA: Codebreaking and the War against Japan, 1942-1945. Lawrence, KS: University Press of Kansas, 1992. 1994. [pb]

Surveillant 2.2 says MacArthur's ULTRA is a "well-written, scholarly work ... [and] will become the standard work on the topic." The author uses "sources on both sides of the Pacific and NSA declassified records." For Kruh, FILS 12.1, this is a "fascinating account.... Drea has provided a superb study of ULTRA and its effect on operational planning in MacArthur's Pacific theater. It is certain to be the prime reference work on this subject for years to come." Periscope 19.4 concludes that this work is "detailed and thoroughly researched," and gives it a "highly recommended" rating.

According to Ferris and Handel, I&NS 10.1 (Jan. 1995), "MacArthur's ULTRA possesses greater analytical sophistication and covers more chronological terrain than the best previous accounts of intelligence during the Pacific war.... Drea does not ... forget that intelligence alone could never win a war. On the other hand, he demonstrates that Ultra was the decisive source of intelligence in the Southwest Pacific, one which fundamentally shaped the course of the Pacific war."

Barnhart, I&NS 8.2, comments on Drea's "impressive research, in both Allied and Japanese materials." This is a "significant work for any student of military intelligence.... Hollandia ... was the high point for Ultra.... [It] never again repeated this performance." Drea's "conclusions are conservative, even guarded.... [A] critical factor invariably was whether the general, usually MacArthur, found Ultra's information supporting his preferred options ... [because] preference always won."

To Whitlock, Cryptolog 14.4, "[f]or anyone seeking to acquire a full and balanced appreciation of the role cryptology played in destroying the military power of Japan..., this book is an absolute necessity." Coakley, AHR, Apr. 1993, believes that this work "is a good piece of scholarship that will find an important place in the growing body of literature on ULTRA's role in World War II."

MI 19.3 views MacArthur's ULTRA as the "best historical work ... on the application of intelligence in Army operations." Drea "evaluates the effect ULTRA had on MacArthur's operational planning and decisions during his New Guinea and Philippines campaigns," and finds that "MacArthur's use of ULTRA was inconsistent.... [W]hile he followed his intelligence in some cases, MacArthur ignored it in others, notably the invasion of the Philippines." The author's "cogent and detailed analysis is backed by impressive research.... Combined with clear writing and provocative arguments, balance and accuracy make this book the standard work on the topic."

Drea, Edward J. "Ultra Intelligence and General Douglas MacArthur's Leap to Hollandia, January-April 1944." Intelligence and National Security 5, no. 2 (Apr. 1990): 323-349.

This is an excellent article on the operational use of intelligence. Ultra was not responsible for MacArthur's success, but he made use of the knowledge given him by Ultra to plan his operations.

Drea, Edward J. "Were the Japanese Army Codes Secure?" Cryptologia 19, no. 2 (Apr. 1995): 113-136.

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