Scott #: 431-435
This set of five stamps were issued in 1983 to commemorate 40 years of Battle of Tarawa.
The Battle of Tarawa was a battle in the Pacific Theater of World War II, largely fought from November 20 to November 23, 1943. It was the first American offensive in the critical central Pacific region.
12c - War memorial
30c - Battle map, location of Tarawa atoll in Pacific
35c - Defense gun
50c - scenes 1943, 1983
$1 - amphibious assault ship USS Tarawa
In order to set up forward air bases capable of supporting operations across the mid-Pacific, to the Philippines, and into Japan, the U.S. needed to take the Marianas Islands. The Marianas were heavily defended, and in order for attacks against them to succeed, land-based bombers would have to be used to weaken the defenses. The nearest islands capable of supporting such an effort were the Marshall Islands, northeast of Guadalcanal. Taking the Marshalls would provide the base needed to launch an offensive on the Marianas but the Marshalls were cut off from direct communications with Hawaii by a garrison on the small island of Betio, on the western side of Tarawa Atoll in the Gilbert Islands. Thus, to eventually launch an invasion of the Marianas, the battles had to start far to the east, at Tarawa.
Click here to know more about Battle of Tarawa in Wikipedia.
USS Tarawa (LHA-1) - is a United States Navy amphibious assault ship, the lead ship of her class, and the second ship to be named for Tarawa Atoll, site of a Marine landing during World War II.