By Brian Bond
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Extra info for British and Japanese Military Leadership in the Far Eastern War, 1941-45 (Cass Series--Military History and Policy, No. 17)
Chennault believed he could accomplish the destruction of Japan by air power alone. 53 These divisions in Chungking over future operations increased the rivalry between the US Army and Navy in Washington. General Marshall supported Stilwell’s land operations in Burma, while Admirals Nimitz and King both supported the use of air power directly against Japan. Chennault, convincing and articulate, contrasted with ‘Vinegar Joe’ Stilwell’s pessimism about Chiang. Roosevelt was equally attracted to a less costly air campaign against Japan.
The United States estimated that it would take 18 months between the surrender of Germany and the defeat of Japan. Stalin had already made clear his specific claims in China and in Japan in return for the Soviet Union’s participation in the Pacific War. At Yalta, Washington was glad that Stalin confirmed the Soviet Union’s intention of entering the war against Japan two to three months after the surrender of Germany. Britain was not involved in the Stalin—Roosevelt discussions about the peace settlement with Japan, but Churchill approved the US—Soviet accords and signed them.
But it could not fulfil the expected role. All that the Liaison Conference did was literally ‘liaison’ between the two institutions. The civilian leaders were not able to take part in military strategic matters. It is rather significant that Tojo held the post of War Minister concurrently with the premiership. He was the only Prime Minister who had simultaneously held the post of War Minister since 1885 when the cabinet system was introduced into Japan. Usually a military officer who was appointed Prime Minister would retire from the service.
British and Japanese Military Leadership in the Far Eastern War, 1941-45 (Cass Series--Military History and Policy, No. 17) by Brian Bond