Re: Could Japan have won in the Pacific . . .
Essentially, Polish, I think you are correct as far as the ultimate outcome of the war is concerned. Japan overmatched itself by far when they took us on, as Yamamoto had warned. I do think that my "what ifs" are meaningful though, in that such damage--which could have been inflicted--would have made life far more difficult than it actually was for American forces in the Pacific, and might even have forced us back to the mainland for at least a time. Indeed, Guadalcanal could not have happened when it did, which means that very likely Australia would have fallen to Japanese occupation. Another thought: If, as you suggest, our main concentration was turned against the Japanese instead of the Germans, England might well have fallen and we would have had no base from which to bomb Germany or launch Operation Overlord. And what about the possibility that Germany, unhindered by bombing, might have developed the atomic bomb before we did.