Photographer's Note

Japanese Seaplane in Butaritari Lagoon. I found this atol to be a quiet backwater much greener than other islands in this part of Kiribati (formerly Gilbert Islands). However this wreck tells a story of much fierce activity during WW11. Invaded by the Japanese in December 1941 it became a seaplane base used to attack American bases in the Phoenix and Ellis Islands. It was retaken by the Americans in November 1943.The remains of the Geida soft drinks plant built by a NZ company in the 70's adjoins the airstrip which proudly pronounces itself as an 'International' airport after an ill fated attempt to start a service to Majuro in the Marshall Islands.These are the only signs of development I could find on this beautiful friendly atol. I took this shot one morning with a Ricoh GR1 film camera which has a sharp fixed 28m Leica lens, ideal for travel.

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