Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Never Forget: Doolittle Raid April 18, 1942

The USA bombers appeared over Tokyo at noon as a response to Pearl Harbor. It was a one way trip for the aircraft, but many of the crews made it to the Chinese mainland and survived.

Instapundit: More WW2 bombers and Remembering the Doolittle Raid

Victory Girls: USS Arizona survivor interned aboard ship

Powerline: A Footnote on the Doolittle Raid


  1. The only real achievement of the raid was a big, but unsung, strategic one

    Hitler was pushing a concept called Operation Orient where the Krauts and Nips would work together to rule the world. Five of the six carriers that had hit Pearl Harbor attacked Trincomalee on Ceylon on Easter Sunday and sunk one British aircraft carrier, two heavy cruisers, one auxiliary cruiser, two destroyers and one corvette.

    The net effect was to chase the Royal Navy back to Africa. Hitler suggested this success be followed up with a Japanese occupation of Madagascar (like Indo-China, run by Vichy) and an invasion of Bengal where there was famine and a largely Moslem population with an eye toward raising a general revolt and throwing the British out of India.

    Had this been implemented and the revolt, backed by Japanese bayonets, been successful, the Suez Canal would have been bottled up, a major source of manpower and raw materials would have gone over to the enemy (think a couple of million fresh troops in Russia), and China, holdijng down 80% of the Japanese Army, would probably been have been knocked out of the war.

    The Doolittle raid convinced Tojo knocking out the Americans must take top priority. In the battles of the Coral Sea and Midway, two of the five carriers were knocked out of action and three, along with the Kaga, were sunk (all those sunk had also raided Darwin Australia).

    Its inadvertent accomplishment was the most important.

    1. True dat!

      The other major accomplishment though was the psychological effect it had on the American public who wanted to strike back at the Japanese for Pearl Harbor. Granted the bombing only inflicted minimal actual damage in Japan, but it help bolster the feeling of despair following Pearl Harbor and those initial losses in the Pacific.


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