The U.S. Navy Against the Axis recounts the dramatic story of the U.S. Navy's surface fleet in World War II - especially its ship-to-ship combat. Rewned naval historian Vincent O'Hara suggests that the fleet's role in America's ultimate victory was more crucial than commonly credited, and holds many lessons for today's Navy and the nation as a whole. O'Hara refutes the widely held tion that the attack on Pearl Harbor rendered surface warships obsolete and that naval aviation and submarines dominated the Pacific War. Indeed, he demonstrates that the battleships, cruisers and destroyers of the fleet made major contributions to America's victory by playing a decisive role at critical junctures. He also documents the performance of weapon systems, shows how doctrine developed, and examines the role played by new techlogies. A cautionary parable relevant to today's Navy, The U.S. Navy Against the Axis demonstrates how swift adaptability and intellectual honesty were fundamental to the Navy's success against Japan. The book's underlying premises is that we cant assume that in a conflict against conventional or asymmetric enemies, we hold title to the same virtues demonstrated by the U.S. Navy three generations past. Instead, those lessons need to be constantly studied and validated in the face of postwar mythologies, lest they be forgotten.
Vincent P. O'Hara is a naval historian and researcher. His work has appeared in many periodicals and annuals including Warship, World War II Quarterly, MHQ, and Pacific War Journal. He is the author of German Fleet at War, also published by the Naval Institute Press. O'Hara lives in Chula Vista, California.