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Saturday, May 17, 2003

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THE 1943 CHOISEUL MARINE RAID AND JFK

Shortly after the arrival of the regiment on Vella Lavella, LtCol Victor H. Krulak, CO of the 2d Parachute Bn was advised of the impending Bougainville landings, and was ordered to land w/a raiding force on the island of Choiseul, there to create a disturbance in order to confuse the enemy and to mask the true location of the major assault.

Two diversionary amphibious landings were made the night of Oct. 27-28: the 2nd Marine Parachute Battalion landed on Choiseul; and New Zealand's 8th Brigade, together with Navy Seabees (U.S. Naval Construction Battalions), made an unopposed landing on the Treasury Islands on Oct. 27.

Both operations served their primary purpose of drawing Japanese troops away from Bougainville, but the positions gained in the Treasuries, including valuable Blanche Harbor, were held and strengthened to provide staging for the landings on Bougainville.

The Marines left Choiseul by landing craft after a week of harassing Japanese troops and damaging barge and supply bases.

The commander of one of the relief craft which returned the raiding party to Vella Lavella was Lieutenant, later President John F. Kennedy.

The above from....
U.S. Marine Corps Special Units Of World War II
By Charles L. Updegraph, Jr. History And Museums Division
Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps
Washington, D.C.
Printed 1972

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