The Battle of Midway: June 4, 1942

Six months after Pearl Harbor, the US Navy was able to win a major victory at the Island of Midway. Battle of Midway – World War II – HISTORY.com

Thanks in part to major advances in code breaking, the United States was able to preempt and counter Japan’s planned ambush of its few remaining aircraft carriers, inflicting permanent damage on the Japanese Navy. An important turning point in the Pacific campaign, the victory allowed the United States and its allies to move into an offensive position.

The video at History.com is good, but the audio isn’t balanced correctly. Still the article is good.

Although initial strikes by Midway-based planes were not successful, American carrier-based planes turned the tide. Torpedo bombers became separated from the American dive-bombers and were slaughtered (36 of 42 shot down), but they diverted Japanese defenses just in time for the dive-bombers to arrive; some of them had become lost, and now by luck they found the Japanese. The Japanese carriers were caught while refueling and rearming their planes, making them especially vulnerable. The Americans sank four fleet carriers–the entire strength of the task force–Akagi, Kaga, Soryu, and Hiryu, with 322 aircraft and over five thousand sailors. The Japanese also lost the heavy cruiser Mikuma. American losses included 147 aircraft and more than three hundred seamen.

I always enjoyed the 1970s Henry Fonda, Charlton Heston movie, but it probably doesn’t hold up for folks used to 21st century special effects.

Advertisements