THE BATTLE OF MIDWAY

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When: JUNE 4-7 1942
WHERE: MIDWAY ATOLL,
PACIFIC OCEAN
WHAT: Japanese naval and
aircraft attack on the U.S.
Island of Midway
WHY: The Japanese wanted to
get rid of the U.S.’s control of
the pacific.
OUTCOME: Because of
Japanese overconfidence, they
were officially defeated on
June 7th 1942
Significance:
 The win was a
brought a great moral
uproar to the
Americans.
 The defeat of the
Japanese meant that
the Pacific was now
Controlled solely by
the Americans
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The battle lasted from June 4th to the 7th
The Americans were fighting with substantially
fewer resources.
The main ships were aircraft carriers not
battleships.
Seeing as the Japanese missed some important
targets during the attack on Pearl Harbor, the
Americans were able to make repairs in the
undamaged dry dock on the carrier Yorktown.
The Japanese defeat at Midway was the turning
point for the Americans in the Pacific Theater.
The bulk of the fighting was done on June 4th
Chester W. Nimitz
Yamamoto Isoroku
The Japanese brought a
larger naval force to the
battle of midway which
included:
 4 Carriers
 2 Battleships
 15 Support Vessels (Heavy
and light cruisers,
destroyers)
 248 carrier aircraft and 16
floatplanes
 The
Americans fought with a smaller fleet but
their tactics allowed them to conquer the
Japanese. Their strength came from:
 3 Carriers
 25 support ships
 233 carrier aircraft
 127 land based aircraft
USS Yorktown---------------
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Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto
planned to attack Midway so
that the Americans would
withdraw their carriers from
Pearl Harbor to protect
Midway Island 1,300 miles
northwest of Hawaii.
His fleet would then try and
destroy the Americans using
the big slow battle ships.
What the Japanese didn’t know
was that the Americans had
hastily repaired their damaged
ships from the previous Battle
of the Coral Sea and were
ready for a fight.
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Another thing the Japanese
didn’t know was that the U.S.
cryptanalysts cracked their
naval codes and so the
Americans knew about the
attack and what kind of
forces they would be up
against.
Admiral Chester Nimitz then
dispatched USS Enterprise
and USS Hornet to Midway
Island.
 Midway Atoll
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04:30 hours, Vice Admiral
Chuichi Nagumo launched
108 planes as well as 7
scout planes.
They bombed installations
on midway then returned
to the carriers.
The second wave witch
had been armed with
torpedoes was re-armed
with bombs, then a scout
plane reported a visual on
the American fleet and the
aircraft were told to be
switched back to torpedos.
•The Americans then sent 3 squadrons of aircraft to attack the Japanese carriers at
07:00. Even with all the bombs, torpedoes, and fuel on deck they were unsuccessful at
doing much damage and suffered heavy losses.
•The late arrival of the last American squadron however pulled the Japanese combat air
patrol out of position, leaving the fleet vulnerable. At 10:22, American dive bombers
coming from the southwest and northeast struck the carriers Kaga, Soryu, and Akagi.
•The carriers were useless but one last Japanese group of Zeros (Japanese planes)
launched from the one remaining carrier Hiryu and after a few waves, sank the
Yorktown carrier.
•By 02:55 on the 4th of June, the Japanese retreated and the Americans were free to
move on Tokyo.
 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1v4I6
RGRW50
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