Inter Service Rivalry Analysis

2467 Words 10 Pages
Introduction Inter-service rivalry provides an opportunity to build espirit de corps and encourages competition that benefits both services as they try to outshine their sister service. Yet, the Pacific War provides convincing examples that there is a great deal of risk to war preparation, planning, and execution inherent in such rivalries. The inability of Japanese and American commanders to effectively and efficiently coordinate operations and concentrate their forces at decisive points throughout the Pacific War is a cautionary example of how inter-service rivalries reduce the effectiveness of jointness in the operational domain of war.
Unified Command First, inter-service rivalries made a unified strategy impossible which handicapped
…show more content…
The opening stages of the Pacific War were considerably well executed and their amphibious operations were very successful. Still, it was not a truly unified effort. The IJN was so determined to execute the southern advance that it hid the fact that it was not entirely ready for it. Additionally, the IJA was shocked to learn that the IJN already had a plan for an operation to attack Pearl Harbor months before it was discussed with them. Regardless, the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor and the southern advance were a remarkable demonstration of how effective joint planning could benefit the Japanese and they were actually quite effective when they chose to fight amphibious operations together throughout the war. The strategic consequences aside, their initial operations achieved their goals much faster than anticipated and they dominated the first phase of the war. Early 1942 was the culminating point of attack for the Japanese. It was possibly their greatest opportunity to consolidate their differences and combine efforts to finish the limited war on favorable terms. But, as was probably inevitable due to the intense rivalry, the Japanese inter-service cooperation fell apart …show more content…
On one hand, Japan committed piecemeal forces to the fight and suffered a defeat through attrition. Fighting both in New Guinea and the Solomons, they divided their efforts due to competing inter-service priorities. They won many tactical victories, particularly the nighttime engagements that favored Japanese naval doctrine, but the preponderance of their efforts fell on their highly trained naval aviators which were attrited in unsustainable numbers. The IJA did help but it was both too little and too late to swing the tide of the operation. It also affected the conflict in China as the army forces that were diverted to Guadalcanal were needed for an operation in there to defeat the nationalists. Of note, during this pivotal time in the war with the US, over half of the IJA was still involved in the continental struggle for China which was theoretically the main theater of war for

Related Documents