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When US forces approached the tiny island of Peleliu inside the Japanese National Defense Zone in late-1944, the Imperial Japanese high command was determined to defend the small landmass at any cost. By then, the Empire was strictly on the defensive, as their forces had suffered blow after blow while they slowly retreated to their country.
A regiment of 10,000 men belonging to one of Japan's most experienced and capable regiments, the 14th Infantry Division, was sent to reinforce Peleliu. Their instructions were to hold the islands with their lives, and they were prepared to make the ultimate sacrifice to halt the American incursion.
Meanwhile, American forces composed of the 1st, 5th, and 7th Marine Regiments were ordered to take the island and capture its runway at all costs, as it was one of the most essential airstrips in Asia.
As the Americans landed in Peleliu expecting a weakened Japanese force, they had no idea that the enemy had reorganized and switched tactics entirely, turning into what became known as the bitterest fight for the Marines in World War 2...
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