It wasn't flamebait, but a question.
I don't have the book handy at the moment (it is in a box somewhere in my shed and will try to dig it out later). But the book is a historical piece on British Commonwealth Pacific Airways, and it went into the subject of the Americans and British nearly coming to blows over the possession of Canton Island. Pan Am, with the full military support of America, set up a base on the otherwise sparse atoll. This was done to support Pan Am flights throughout the South Pacific. But from: http://www.pacificwrecks.com/provinces/kiribati_canton.html
Canton Island is the largest and most northern of the Phoenix Group. The island is an atoll, made up of a low, narrow rim of land surrounding a large shallow lagoon. It is 4.1/2 miles wide on the west, from which it narrows to the southeast point, which is nine miles distant from the northwest point. Americans and British occupied the island in two seporate camps. On March 3, 1938 President Franklin D. Roosevelt placed Canton and Enderbury under jurisdiction of the Department of the Interior. In April 1939, when Canton and Enderbury were placed under joint British and American control for fifty years, and "thereafter until such time as it may be modified or terminated by mutual consent". During 1938 and 1939 Pan American Airways laid out and developed an extensive airport, deepened and cleared the lagoon, and initiated flights to New Zealand using Canton as one of the ports of call
Of course, that isn't the full history of Canton Island, but the Americans later set up naval facilities on Canton, and with those facilities could send their ships to other parts of the Pacific. Of course the Japanese were basically pissed with all of this, and decided to take out the port which supplied Canton and other Pacific islands, that being Pearl Harbour.
But it is my understanding that it was Canton Island which was the "straw that broke the camels back". If Trippe never did set up that base on Canton Island, then history probably would have been very very different than what was experienced during the 1940s.
Anyway, I will make every attempt to find this book and paraphrase what was written in it for you here.