Book Review:- ‘Tsushima, Japan’s Trafalgar: The voyage of the condemned fleet to the Straits of Korea’ by P. Thorn

By Andrew Choong Han Lin, published December 2023


The year 2022 seems to have been a very good one for books relating to the battle of Tsushima. This reviewer had the pleasure of reviewing Rotem Kowner’s excellent if compact treatment of the subject a few months ago, and having the opportunity to do the same for Phil Thorne’s imposing work on the same topic has proven to be an equally fascinating and enjoyable experience. The action fought on 27 May 1905 was one of the most decisive naval battles in history. Thorne’s study of this key event and those which led up to it, the culmination of more than 30 years of intensive research, is a worthy tribute to the men involved at all levels, not just the combatants. Tsushima, Japan’s Trafalgar has a strong claim to being the most comprehensive treatment of this aspect of the Russo-Japanese War in English. Its coverage of the naval operations is highly detailed, but it does not shy away from giving a great deal of consideration to the other sinews of war such as the logistical and political factors that shaped the course of the conflict at sea. Indeed, the focus on the herculean effort required to keep the Baltic Fleet in coal during its epic journey to the east is scrutinized in greater detail than ever before…

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Filed under: Other (Twentieth C) | Pacific
Subjects include: Battles & Tactics

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