Across the reef
At dawn on 20 November 1943, U.S. marines launched an assault on Tarawa, a Japanese-held atoll in the British Protectorate of the Gilbert and Ellice Islands. The water in the lagoon was only 3 feet deep that morning, less than the 4–5 feet required by a fully loaded personnel carrier to navigate the waters. As a result, marines saddled with equipment were forced to wade almost a mile across the lagoon under heavy Japanese fire.
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