The following are selections from the U.S. Naval Institute series American’s at War — personal stories of notable American veterans.
More information and videos can be found here.
Recent Posts By the Author
Military grooming standards made news this summer when African American women in the Army and Navy complained about revisions in the regulations governing hair. At least one sailor was discharged for a hairstyle that was unauthorized when the Navy said she couldn’t wear a gas mask properly.
The instance is the latest in a long line of revisions and controversies over military grooming standards in the U.S. Navy going back more than a century.
Notorious spy John Walker died on Aug. 28, 2014. The following is a story outlining Walker’s spy ring from the June 2010 issue of U.S. Naval Institute’s Naval History Magazine with the original title: The Navy’s Biggest Betrayal.
Twenty-five years ago the FBI finally shut off the biggest espionage leak in U.S. Navy history when it arrested former senior warrant officer John A. Walker. Read More
The following is a first person account of the 1942 Battles of Java and Sunda Strait. The work was published in the February 1949 issue of Proceedings as, “The Galloping Ghost.” The text is presented unaltered and includes language some could find offensive.
On the night of February 28, 1942, the U.S.S. Houston, Admiral Tommy Hart’s former Asiatic flagship, vanished without a trace somewhere off the Northwest coast of Java. The mystery of the Houston remained complete until the war ended and small groups of survivors were discovered in Japs prisoner of war camps, scattered from the island of Java through the Malay Peninsula, the jungles of Burma and Thailand, and northward to the Islands of Japan. Read More
The following is a first person account of the events over the Gulf of Tonkin on Aug. 4, 1964. Another view of the Gulf of Tonkin incident can be found in the August, 2010 issue of Proceedings.
At approximately 0355 on the morning of Aug. 4, 1964 in the South China Sea, the aircraft carrier USS Constellation (CVA-64), was steaming toward the Gulf of Tonkin at as high a speed as she could without losing her accompanying destroyers. Despite an attack by North Vietnamese PT boats two days earlier, the U.S. government had decided to send the destroyers USS Maddox (DD-731) and Turner Joy (DD-951), on a route similar to the one where that attack had occurred.
The carrier USS Ticonderoga was already operating in the area and Constellation, though still about 200 miles away, was rapidly moving into position to provide support. Read More
The following is a 1999 article from Proceedings, originally titled: The Sinking of the Indy & Responsibility of Command.
The July 30, 1945 sinking of the heavy cruiser USS Indianapolis (CA-35) by the Imperial Japanese submarine 1-58 has been called the last, great naval tragedy of World War II. It is the stuff of legend: after delivering the atomic bombs to Tinian, the Indy was torpedoed, sinking in 12 minutes. At least 800 crew members survived the sinking and went into the water. On their rescue after five days, only 320 still were alive. Their stories have inspired three books, a movie, and perhaps yet another feature film. Read More
As a flotilla of naval vessels from around the world participates in the Rim of the Pacific Exercise (RIMPAC) to sustain relationships in the maritime community, a century ago this week international navies converged for a remarkably different occasion—to drink the last of the U.S. Navy’s supply of alcohol. Read More
Michael Bay’s upcoming TV series The Last Ship on TNT — premiering next month — is the latest in a long line of programs that have featured the U.S. Navy and Marines. Read More
A film about kamikaze pilots has been playing to packed theaters from Hokkaido to Kyushu since its release in December of 2013, becoming one of the top-grossing Japanese productions of all time. In addition to attracting the admiration of Prime Minster Shinzo Abe, “The Eternal Zero” has drawn a fair amount of criticism for being the latest in a string of recent films that mythologize the Japanese role in World War II. Read More