The Thousand Mile War

The Thousand Mile War

MV Starr, Friday, June1.

34 09N, 161 37W

801nm from Honolulu

1234 DTG to Dutch Harbor

Both Sharry and I have just finished reading, “The Thousand Mile War” by Brian Garfield, published in 1969 and updated in 1995. The story is a factually accurate and riveting tale about the battles between the United States and Japan that took place in the Aleutian Islands during WWII. The descriptions of the weather and hardships, even in the summer months, had both Sharry and I (mostly Sharry) questioning why we would want to go there but, at the same time we wanted to see where this “forgotten war” took place. We read that the summer weather conditions were days of constant fog often with zero visibility, and with frequent 100 mph williwaws that would cause the PBY flying boats to crash into the Island mountains. This is a destination that only a few of our sailing/cruising friends have visited!

We then found and watched John Huston’s 1943 documentary, “Report From the Aleutians” which portrayed a very tamed-down description of the extremely harsh weather conditions and the fierceness of this war. I still want to go there, but Sharry is not totally convinced.


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