Asia Pacific 1943: Operation Cartwheel
Their successes in New Guinea and Guadalcanal encouraged the Allies to push north through the Solomons. Meanwhile a second American force under the US Navy began a thrust into the Central Pacific by landing in the Gilbert Islands.
11–30 May 1943 Battle of Attu▲
United States forces landed on Attu Island, Territory of Alaska, defeating the strongly entrenched Japanese occupation force over the following weeks.
21 Jun–25 Aug 1943 New Georgia Campaign▲
On 21 June US marines land near Segi Point, in Japanese-occupied New Georgia, and advance inland towards Viru Harbour, where they are reinforced by more marines on 30 June. At the same time other units land on the adjacent islands of Rendova and Vanganu. Though the landings are unopposed on land, Japanese aircraft harass them in multiple naval actions and resistance in the interior is fierce. It is not until late August that New Georgia is pacified.
28 Jul 1943 Evacuation of Kiska▲
Japanese evacuate Kiska
20–23 Nov 1943 Battle of Tarawa▲
In the first United States offensive in the Central Pacific region, 35,000 US troops, including 18,000 Marines, land on Tarawa Atoll in the Gilbert Islands, facing immediate serious opposition from the some 4,800 Japanese defenders (including laborers). The Japanese resist almost to the last man, with only 17 soldiers and 129 laborers captured.
15 Dec 1943–24 Feb 1944 Battle of Arawe▲
As part of Operation Cartwheel, US forces land at Arawe, in Japanese-occupied southwest New Britain in the Territory of New Guinea. The landing catches the Imperial Japanese Army by surprise and the Americans quickly secure a beachhead. In response, the Japanese mount a number of air raids on the invaders, while their army launching an unsuccessful counterattack in late December. The US respond with their own offensive in mid-January 1944, after which the Japanese decide to abandon Arawe and withdraw north.