Sitting Ducks: Yamamoto’s Fleet of Carriers at Midway, June 1942

We just watched the movie, “Midway”, on Sunday evening, May 30, during Memorial Day Weekend.  In May and early June of 1942 Admiral Nimitz of the U.S. Navy won a decisive victory over the Japanese fleet at Midway despite their superior fleet and air power.  In the movie, the U.S. Navy pilots saw the carriers below them in the Pacific Ocean as “sitting ducks.”    In hunting and shooting game such as ducks or geese, it is not sportsmanlike to shoot sitting ducks; they should be shot in flight.  A sitting duck is easier to shoot.

“Admiral Isoruku Yamamoto,  had planned an invasion of Midway Island which would provide a base for attacking Hawaii. Using decrypted Japanese radio intercepts, Admiral Chester Nimitz was able to counter this offensive. On June 4, 1942, US aircraft flying from USS Enterprise, USS Hornet, and USS Yorktown attacked and sunk four Japanese carriers, forcing Yamamoto to withdrawal. The Battle of Midway marked the turning point of World War II  in the Pacific.”

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