Seventy-five years ago (June 4-7, 1942), the astonishing American victory at the Battle of Midway changed the course of the Pacific War.
Just six months after the catastrophic Japanese surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, the U.S. crushed the Imperial Japanese Navy off Midway Island (about 1,300 miles northwest of Honolulu), sinking four of its aircraft carriers.
“Midway” referred to the small atoll roughly halfway between North America and Asia. But to Americans, “Midway” became a barometer of military progress. Just half a year after being surprised at Pearl Harbor, the U.S. Navy had already destroyed almost half of Japan’s existing carrier strength (after achieving a standoff at the Battle of the Coral Sea a month earlier).
The odds at the June 1942 battle favored the Japanese. The imperial fleet had four carriers to the Americans’ three, backed up by scores of battleships, cruisers, and light carriers as part of the largest armada that had ever steamed from Japan.
No military had ever won more territory in six months than had Japan. Its Pacific Empire ranged from the Indian Ocean to the coast of the Aleutian Islands, and from the Russian-Manchurian border to Wake Island in the Pacific.
Yet the Japanese Navy was roundly defeated by an outnumbered and inexperienced American fleet at Midway. Why and how? Continue…
these are the type of posts from victor hanson that got me hooked, and really how i sorta fell into this friday morning blogging routine of mine… love the history posts, victor! keep ’em coming dude.
PS. kinda addicted to this guatemalan coffee from wawa lately.