America delivers an explosive surprise on Japan, a surprise that will be remembered forever.
A daring plan
The air raid led by Lieutenant Colonel James H. Doolittle himself led America to victory after the devastating attack on Pearl Harbor.
After tedious research and testing off of aircraft carrier Hornet (CV-8), American planners selected the North American B-25 airplane.
The Soviet’s non-conformist attitude towards America’s plan made the east coast of china the primary landing site for the B-25 airplanes.
Throughout March, volunteer crews trained for the extremely hazardous mission they were about to undertake. Crews trained on cross-country flying, night flying, navigation, low altitude approach, rapid bombing, and evasive action.
It came time to load the B-25 airplanes onto Hornet and sail to Japan with Vice Admiral William F. Halsey, Jr. as the commander for Task Force 16 (TF-16). Aircraft carriers, Hornet (CV-8) and Enterprise (CV-6) were going into battle.
The Japanese listened to America’s US Navy radio traffic and their picket boat spotted TF-16 on April 18th.
Halsey, a smart commander, knew the potential threat of Japanese land-based air assets and gave the order to launch the B-25 planes early.
Americas B-25 Mitchell airplanes soared over Japan dropping high explosives and incendiary bombs crippling Japanese forces. The surprise attack on Tokyo enormously impacted Japan, giving the US the upper hand.
Unfortunately, 15 of the 16 B-25 airplanes crashed in China and one landed in Soviet territory, where the Soviets imprisoned the crew.
Not as commonly known, Enterprise had its victory that very same day. The Halsey-Doolittle raid ended up putting the Japanese offshore warning system out of commission for a short time.
Beginning of the end
The raid on Tokyo was so effective that when Japan finally got their force back together they were unsuccessful at finding the retiring force, TF-16, to bring it back into battle.
The attack planner’s goal to destroy specific Japanese targets and stir up fear turned out to be successful in making the Japanese army reluctantly go along with the navy’s plans.
The Doolittle Raid will forever be remembered as an incredible story of America’s retaliation for the attack on Pearl Harbor.