World War II in 1942: The History of the Year the Allies Turned the Tide Against the Axis

World War II in 1942: The History of the Year the Allies Turned the Tide Against the Axis

Narrated by:
Bill Caufield
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Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
May 2024
8 hours 44 minutes
The United States began 1942 determined to avenge Pearl Harbor, but the Allies, now including the Soviet Union by necessity, did not agree on the war strategy. In 1941, both the Germans and British moved armies into North Africa, where Italy had already tried and failed to reach the Suez Canal. The British sought American help in North Africa, where British General Bernard Montgomery was fighting the legendary “Desert Fox,” General Erwin Rommel. At the same time, Stalin was desperate for Allied action on the European continent that could free up the pressure on the besieged Soviets.

President Roosevelt had a consequential decision to make, and he eventually decided to land American forces on North Africa to assist the British against Rommel, much to Stalin’s chagrin. While the Americans and British could merely harass the Germans with air power and naval forces in the Atlantic, Stalin’s Red Army had to take Hitler’s best shots in Russia throughout 1942. But the Red Army’s tenuous hold continued to cripple the Nazi war machine while buying the other Allies precious time.

Despite fighting in North Africa and the Atlantic, the United States still had the resources and manpower to fight the Japanese in the Pacific. Though the Japanese had crippled the American fleet at Pearl Harbor, its distance from Japan made an invasion of Pearl Harbor impossible, and Japan had not severely damaged important infrastructure. Thus, the United States was able to quickly rebuild a fleet, still stationed at Pearl Harbor right in the heart of the Pacific. This forward location allowed the United States to immediately push deeply into the Pacific theater. In fact, the turning point in the Pacific theater took place in 1942 near Midway Island. The Japanese had moved a sizable fleet intending to occupy Midway Island and draw the American navy near.
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