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Books > History > Military > Naval > B00BHOXR4E
  1. War Plan Orange: The U.S. Strategy to Defeat Japan, 1897-1945
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  2. War Plan Orange: The U.S. Strategy to Defeat Japan, 1897-1945

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Based on twenty years of research in formerly secret archives, this book reveals for the first time the full significance of War Plan Orange--the U.S. Navy's strategy to defeat Japan, forumulated over the forty years prior to World War II. It recounts the struggles between "thrusting" and "cautionary" schools of strategy, the roles of outspoken leaders such as Dewey, Mahan, King, and MacArthur, and the adaptation of aviation and other technologies to the plan. The book shows that the strategy of Plan Orange was the basis of prewar U.S. naval development in training, ship and aircraft design, and amphibious and tactical thought.

War Plan Orange is the recipient of numerous book awards, including the prestigious Theodore and Franklin Roosevelt Naval History Prize.

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Edward S. Miller
Kindle Edition
Kindle eBook
Naval Institute Press
Naval Institute Press
Naval Institute Press
Naval Institute Press
Most Helpful Customer Reviews

I recently came across this very fine book and found it to be one of the best things I have read in some time. Like many students of World War II, I was familiar with War Plan Orange and the “Orange War” that followed, but I had never encountered an analysis of how the plan itself had developed over the years prior to the war. Mr. Miller’s book has filled that void admirably.

So many others have already provided insightful reviews of this book that I am mindful of the need to offer a new or at least enhanced perspective. Mr. Miller’s exceptional scholarship has provided a thorough and highly readable history of War Plan Orange (“WPO”) from its inception in 1897 – before the Spanish-American War – through its metamorphosis into the Rainbow War Plans just before hostilities with Japan began. The story of how it evolved through bureaucratic infighting within the Navy will resonate with anyone who has been part of a large... Read more
Five stars (deserved) for effort here. The author has mastered his subject - how the US war plans vs. Japan evolved and matured from the turn of the century to Pearl Harbor - and clearly explains it. There is some unavoidable repetition, but on the whole the delivery is interesting and well written. I personally bogged down a bit in personalities of the hard-chargers vs. more prudent planners (in the immediate pre-war period when they're people we've all heard of from the Pearl Harbor fisaco, who was what is sometimes surprising). But as a history of planning as well as a particular sheaf of plans, it contrasted interestingly with my own limited knowledge of, for example, the SIOP's internal politics as well as SAC's relationship with the political authorities compared to various presidents' relationship with the Orange/Rainbow series.

Which is to say, it's not for everyone, but it's very good indeed for its proper audience.
War Plan Orange is one of the best books on background to WW II in the Pacific Theater of war. Simply put, War Plan Orange is the blueprint the US used to win the war with Japan. Other plans could have been used that may have led to disaster, but the adoption of War Plan Orange was the key to victory in the Pacific. The Plan predicted the course of the war with great accuracy, and one must read this book to understand how that accuracy was obtained.

The book starts with an overview of the plan and its development from 1906 forward. Then a chapter is devoted to each aspect of the plan; for example, one chapter focuses on the aggressive plans desired by charismatic admirals and another chapter talks about the conservative plans developed by staff and demanded by Congress because of budget constraints. How this clash of plans was reconciled is a most interesting story.

The writing is clear and concise. Each chapter is finely focused. The various personalities... Read more
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