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Produced in 1945 by Jam Handy, “The Naval Gun At Iwo Jima” is a sister film to “The Naval Gun at Okinawa”. This film details the important role Navy guns played in assaulting Japanese forces that were dug into caves on the island. It also shows the close support of Marines during the long assault. Naval gunfire at Iwo Jima was critical, the film explains, due to the fact that low visibility limited air operations. The film details the role played by battleships, cruisers, destroyers, destroyer escorts, and auxiliary gunboats. Shows tactics employed in exposing Japanese defenses, for example how gunboats were used to draw fire from Japanese gun batteries, exposing them so that the 16-inch guns on the battleships could used to destroy the shore positions.

At 4:22, U.S. Navy Underwater Demolition Teams or UDTs are seen deploying into the waters off Iwo Jima, so that they can locate and destroy enemy mines obstructing the beaches. At 5:42, the swimmers are retrieved from their reconnaissance operations.

At 6:44, the plan of attack against enemy block houses and gun emplacements at D-Day minus one is shown, with USS Idaho taking the right flank and USS Tennessee hitting the left flank of Mt. Suribachi. USS New York and USS Nevada (salvaged at Pearl Harbor) bombarded the beach landing areas for 12 hours. This set up the landing of February 19th, which is shown at 8:40. Gunfire at this point supported the landings and was backed up by air strikes. Assault waves were preceded by gunboats firing rockets (9:00) onto the beach. At 9:48, the attack plan at 15 minutes before H-hour is shown, with intense fire being laid down onto the beach ahead of the Marines. At 10:55, shots of enemy defenses that were destroyed during the landing are seen, including casemates, block houses, anti-aircraft guns, etc. According to the narrator, almost of these could only have been destroyed by naval gunfire.

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This film is part of the Periscope Film LLC archive, one of the largest historic military, transportation, and aviation stock footage collections in the USA. Entirely film backed, this material is available for licensing in 24p HD, 2k and 4k. For more information visit