Monday, March 4, 2013

Iwo Jima today

The island of Iwo Jima, now called IOTO (sulfur island) was the scene of one of the bloodiest battles of World War II. The U.S. Marines landed in February 1945 and fought against the Japanese Imperial forces until March, when they finally managed to conquer the island. The Japanese resistance was extreme, which led them to lose almost all his men.
On this island, at the top of Mount Suribachi, it was made the famous photo Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima.


Nowadays visiting Iwo Jima is almost impossible. It belongs to the army and there is only a naval base of the forces of Japan. No civilians live there. You can only go to Iwo Jima with an organized tour that visit the island once a year. The company organizes tours for military veterans, family members or people interested. They meet every year in Guam to commemorate the anniversary of the battle. From there, an airplane takes them to Iwo Jima. This tour departs from Los Angeles and the places are very limited because they have a single aircraft to fly to the island. The tour price  is about $3500.                                        


Here I show you some of the things that you can find on the island today. There are many more relics of the battle. The land is full of caves, bunkers, artillery and grenade shrapnel damage.

American Memorial Iwo Jima :

Location: here .
The memorial is situated where the American flag was raised on February 12, 1945. It commemorates the valor and sacrifice of the Marines.

 Photo: Kawetijoru

The beach landing:
Location: here .
The beach where American troops entered the 3rd, 4th and 5th Marine Division on February 19, 1945.
Photo: Seigo

Underground Hospital Imperial Japanese Navy:
Location: here .
Here were treated the Japanese soldiers wounded in battle.
Photos: Warrick

Seabee Memorial:
Location: here .
This work of art was created by the Navy Seabee few days after the end of the battle. It represents the flag raising on Mount Suribachi.
 Photo: Warrick

Japanese bunkers:
Location: here.
Photo: Seigo
Photo: jpjonesusn

American Tank:
Location: here .
M4A3 Sherman tank belonging to the 4th Tank Battalion. He was eliminated during the battle.
Photo: JohnnyHN

Japanese coastal Canyon:
Location: here .
It lies north of Mount Suribachi.
Photo: JohnnyHN




  1. Maybe "too much time" has finally passed Iwo Jima by time itself. Hope not. This "great though tragic" chapter has earned its place in history. No, it should not be reduced to "hiking" and biking. But somehow a way to properly honor Iwo Jima and those (on both sides) who died could/should be found. Otherwise, Iwo and its will just eventually evaporate away. Shame. These great heroics made by both sides should not be forgotten. BILL SMITH, P.O. Box 516, Malibu CA 902675, son of two American officers from WW2, no longer alive, but we can still feel Iwo Jima's heart politely pounding away.

  2. my heart and soul goes out to our brave fighting men who stormed ashore on that fateful day, and the days that followed. Uncommonn valor was a common virtue, only stratches the surface of what all those men faced no matter what branch of service they fought with. may God bless them and those loved ones they left behind. i hope that peace will enter their hearts and to those still with us my heartfelt thanks for keeping us all free. i hope we as Americans never forget that sacrifice and that we will instill in our generations to come, a pride that only we as Americans can appreciate. I am the wife of a USAF retired Captain and the mother of an USA and USN veteran,. Thank you all for your service now and in the generations to come.....

  3. War is war. Not all the 'heart goes out' nonsense jargon, and harms way talk talk. Men fight to kill. Nothing else.
    It's kill him, or he kills me. And the bottom line, as it has been for thousands of years, it's all about power and money.

    Quit kidding yourselves people. Devil is on both sides.

  4. B Crystal, you are very misguided about your understanding of what happened on Iwo Jima as well as within the greater conflict. To pretend that there was moral parity between the two sides in that battle is disingenuous and insulting. Yes, both sides killed, and yes both sides sought to protect themselves and their friends. However, the Allies didn't commit horrendous torture and mass execution of their captives. The Japanese did, with relish. The Allies didn't enslave, rape, and exterminate entire local populations because they considered them subhuman and inferior. The Japanese did. Do not get me wrong, I am not saying that I hold modern Japanese accountable for these actions, but do not try to white wash history by saying "the devil is on both sides". There were undoubtedly atrocities on the Allied side as well, but they were aberrations and not completely systemic as they were on the Japanese side. Learn your history before you go spouting off with your hollow philosophical tropes about "power and money". This is the real world, not a Disney movie, situations are always far more complex than simply "power and money".

    1. Bravo. Well put; something that needed to be said.

  5. What an overly simplistic view Crystal. Try cracking open a history book or two and learning why we were at war with Japan. The Rape of Nanking or any book on the Bataan Death March are great places to start.

  6. This war was about money and power??? You know nothing about the history of WW2 Crystal. If there was ever a war worth fighting WW2 was it. We fought aggression, the rape and murder of thousands of people, crimes against humanity, the literal fate of the world was at stake. Not to mention a suprise attack on a sleeping Pearl Harbor. Where Thousands of Americans died. You did not see American forces going on a month long spree of rape and murder, killing women, children, and wounded men in there cots. Of coarse there were crimes commited on both sides, but the Axis powers were a literal culture of crimes against humanity. Your remarks are insulting to me, imagine if a WW2 vet read them.