Mrs. Hickman - Coach Johnson
English II – World History
March 6, 2013
World War II: Doolittle Raid
World War II displayed many characteristics of man. It showed horrible things such as how prejudices lead to the annihilation of 6 million Jews, the lasting hatred in Germans after the First World War, but it also showed admirable feats such as the courage and bravery men showed in the face of adversity. The last statement was not so true for Americans after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, they watched as Japan took over South East Asia and could do nothing about it until they could raise a military. So Americans planned a raid, afterwards named Doolittle Raid, on Japan that would prove to the world that they were ready to strike back. Doolittle Raid was a great strike against Japan, not because of its physical damage but because of its dramatic impacts on both Japanese and American morale. (The Doolittle Raid)
The mission commander, Lt. Colonel James Doolittle was given the opportunity to choose his crew, and he chose 79 men which were split into 16 crews. Doolittle had trouble finding suitable bomber airplanes for his crews because of a very long distance of 2,400 nautical miles. In the end he chose the B-25 bomber, which had to be drastically modified, anything that was believed unnecessary was removed, many fuel tanks were added to the planes, they even replaced some of their turrets with gas tanks. Those bombers were all loaded onto the USS Hornet which had a group of 7 ships.
The mission was first proposed on January 16, 1942 by Captain Donald Duncan but the mission was not launched until 3 months later. The USS Hornet loaded with the 16 B-25’s was launched at around 10:00 AM on April 2nd 1942 and the voyage continued smoothly until on April 18. That day Japanese picket boats had sighted the fleet and radioed the news to shore, after realizing this the Americans decided to sink the boats and launched their airplanes over 100 miles...
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