An exemplar of a bitter, grueling land battle, Iwo Jima also saw prodigious air and sea power brought to bear as American and Japanese troops clashed over control of the tiny Pacific island.
American forces finally captured Iwo Jima — and its two strategic airfields — in late March, 1945.
Photo by W. Eugene Smith—Time for Life Pictures/Getty Images.
Men of the American 7th Army pour through a breach in the Siegfried Line defenses, on their way to Karlsruhe, Germany on March 27, 1945, which lies on the road to Stuttgart. (AP Photo)
A landing craft air cushion (LCAC) enters the well deck of the forward-deployed amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) to reload Marines and equipment for a certification exersize, Philippine Sea, September 2, 2012. Photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Adam M. Bennett.
Two Lockheed Martin SR-71 Blackbirds in the morning fog, a black project from the Lockheed A-12 reconnaissance aircraft in the 1960s by Lockheed and its Skunk Works. Unknown photographer.
Sergeant Max Cones (gunner) fires a M-107, 175mm self-propelled gun, Battery C, 1st Battalion, 83rd Artillery, 54th Artillery Group, Vietnam, 1968.
On Saturday, July 28, 1945, a B-25 Mitchell bomber, piloted in thick fog by Lieutenant Colonel William Franklin Smith, Jr., crashed into the north side of the Empire State Building, between the 79th and 80th floors.
One engine shot through the side opposite the impact and flew as far as the next block where it landed on the roof of a nearby building, starting a fire that destroyed a penthouse. The other engine and part of the landing gear plummeted down an elevator shaft. The resulting fire was extinguished in 40 minutes. 14 people were killed in the accident.
Elevator operator Betty Lou Oliver survived a plunge of 75 stories inside an elevator, which still stands as the Guinness World Record for the longest survived elevator fall recorded.
Despite the damage and loss of life, the building was open for business on many floors on the following Monday. A year later, another aircraft narrowly missed striking the building.
“Atomic Annie” (real name M65 Atomic Canon) was a piece of artillery manufactured by the U.S. in the early part of the Cold War. It was able to fire a 600 pound nuclear projectile about 20 miles. There were 20 of these cannons made, but none of them were ever fired in anger. In fact, only one atomic projectile was ever fired. That test shot was taken at the the Nevada Test Site on May 25, 1953.
Here is two minutes of footage captured during it’s only test shot: YouTube.
The 500-ton TNT explosive charge for Shot “Bravo”, first of a series of three non-nuclear test explosions, is ready for detonation on the southwestern tip of Kahoolawe Island, Hawaii, circa early February 1965.
It is 17 feet high and 34 feet in diameter. Weapons effects test ship Atlanta (IX-304) is moored in the background. The purpose of these three tests was to study the effects of shock and blast of a nuclear explosion on naval vessels.
A Rockwell B-1B Lancer assigned to the 28th Bomb Squadron, Dyess Air Force Base, Texas, maneuvers over New Mexico during a training mission on February 24, 2010. Photo by Master Sgt. Kevin J. Gruenwald.
The Distant Early Warning Line was a system of radar stations in the far northern Arctic region of Canada, with additional stations along the North Coast and Aleutian Islands of Alaska, in addition to the Faroe Islands, Greenland, and Iceland. It was set up to detect incoming Soviet bombers during the Cold War, and provide early warning of any sea-and-land invasion.
A 71st Special Operations Squadron CV-22 Osprey helicopter is being refueled by a 522nd Special Operations Squadron Lockheed MC-130J Combat Shadow II on Jan. 4, 2012, over the skies of New Mexico. Photo by U.S. Air Force Senior Airman James Bell.
Experienced in desert weather flying, a British pilot lands an American made Kittyhawk fighter plane of the Sharknose Squadron in a Libyan Sandstorm, on April 2, 1942. A mechanic on the wing helps to guide the pilot as he taxis through the storm. (AP Photo)
Production line of the MiG-21bis fighter at the HAL factory, Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, Sunabeda, Koraput, India.
This HAL factory makes military aircraft engines for MiG and expanding for Sukhoi assembly line. It employs 6000 engineers and technicians, all are staying in the township next to the factory.
A Lockheed Martin SR-71 Blackbird at sunset. Photo by Lockheed Martin.
The Horten IX V2, one of the experimental Nazi stealth prototypes that would have led to the production version Gotha 2-29, awaiting restoration at the National Air and Space Museum’s Garber facility, Washington, USA.
A Ho 2-29 prototype made a successful test flight just before Christmas 1944. But by then, time was running out for the Nazi’s, and they were never able to perfect the design or produce more than a handful of prototype planes.