First Air Fleet

The Battle of the Philippine Sea, June 1944

The Pearl Harbor Raid, December 7, 1941

In April 1940, obsolescent British Swordfish biplanes, nicknamed "stringbags" for their flimsy construction, struck the Italian fleet at Taranto. Within minutes significant damage was done to Italy's Mediterranean Fleet. To get around the inability to operate torpedoes in the shallow waters of the harbor, the British attached fins to the tail.

The Indian Ocean Raids

Once the Pearl Harbor operation was completed, there was a lack of strategic long term planning to identify concrete goals for the First Air Fleet. Nagumo and his naval force were national heroes, and as 1942 dawned, they were given tasks that both sapped their strength and did not acknowledge that the US carriers were still afloat.

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