Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Daring raid on Tokyo 70 years ago

The US Army Air Corps stunned imperial Japan less than six months after Pearl Harbor by sending ten bombers that bombed Tokyo. It was a great morale boost for the US and our allies. And it forced Japan to station air craft for homeland defense that they intended to use for attacking the Solomon Islands. And to maintain a larger defense perimeter until the next raid on Japan over two years later.

It was daring to launch land-based aircraft from a carrier. They were modified for extended range and intended to land in China. But they launched early too far out because the carrier encountered a Japanese fishing boat that might report their presence.

Of 80 men three died when bailing out, several were executed by Japan, at least one died of malnutrition while a prisoner. The only plane that landed did so in Russia and all were taken prisoner. All received honors. Five are still alive! Kudos to these heroes.

Doolittle Raid Site

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