Antiaircraft Artillery: Unsung Heroes

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Antiaircraft Artillery: Unsung Heroes of World War II Throughout United States Army history, certain branches, units, and individuals have earned their rightful places in the spotlight. The Infantry, Field Artillery, Armor, and other Combat Arms Branches have fought valiantly and sacrificed greatly in countless theaters, thereby earning an impeccable reputation. However, Air Defense Artillery, in one form or another, has participated in every major war since 1812 and yet, still garners little respect or mentions in history books. Upon entering WWI, the branch, then called U.S. Army Antiaircraft Artillery (AAA), was somewhat haphazardly organized and lacked official doctrine or weapons. At the beginning of WWII, the AAA formally emerged as an organized group and played a pivotal role in the European and Pacific Theaters. “At the beginning of World War II the US antiaircraft artillery force was very much the poor stepchild of the Coast Artillery Corps.” (Anderson, R., 2007) However, these Soldiers were among the first to engage the Japanese during the attack on Pearl Harbor, participated in Operation Overlord on D-Day, and countless battles throughout the war. (USC Army ROTC, n.d.)…show more content…
Of course, without a complete, dedicated, and unified effort the result might have been different. Although the Frontline Soldiers will continue to earn all the credit, victory would have been impossible without the assistance and lethal expertise of the U.S. Army Antiaircraft Artillery. Poor organization and underrepresentation has kept these AAA troops in the dark corners of history for too long. Antiaircraft Artillery units will continue to earn small mentions of merit on the battlefield, but usually as a footnote in an Infantry Division documentary. However, historians need to recognize their selfless devotion and success, and put them on the same pedestal as all past war

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