World War II in the Pacific British Task Force 57, Okinawa, and as TF 37, Japan
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Three island groups connect Japan with Formosa a distance of about 700 miles.
Some little islands off the coast of Kyushu called Tokara Retto
Then a gap of 120 miles to the Ryukyu Islands including O-Shima (or Kilai)
Then another gap of 150 miles to a group of smaller islands, the Sakishima Islands.
Which are 120 miles off Formosa.
The western flank of the American fleet attacking Okinawa was assigned to TF-57
stationed off the Sakishimas to interdict Japanese forces from Formosa and SE China.
Initially the task force was station East of the Sakishimas and bombed airfields on the islands to keep ahead of runway repairs. When it was discovered that Japanese were
able to fly directly from Formosa to Okinawa, the fleet moved west of the Sakishimas
to also attack major airfields in Formosa and to interdict flights in the air.
British Task Force 113 was designated Task Force 57 when it was working under Spruance and Task Force 37 when Halsey was in command at sea.
Okinawa -- 29 ships, including 4 carriers with 244 aircraft
British Pacific Fleet
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Pacific_Fleet
The British Pacific Fleet (BPF) was a multinational Allied force which saw action against Japan during World War II. The fleet was formed on December 10, 1944, in Sydney, Australia.
The BPF was based initially on ships detached from the British Eastern Fleet (a.k.a. British East Indies Fleet, based in Ceylon). It was eventually comprised of ships and/or personnel from the British Royal Navy (RN), British Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA), Royal Australian Navy (RAN), Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) and Royal New Zealand Navy (RNZN). The RAN's contribution would undoubtedly have been greater, except that most of its vessels had been integrated with United States Navy formations since 1942. The USN also contributed to the BPF, as did personnel from the South African Navy (SAN). The fleet was commanded by Admiral Sir Bruce Fraser ; Vice-Admiral Sir Philip Vian was in charge of air operations.
The USN, which had control of Allied operations in the Pacific Ocean Areas, gave the BPF combat units the designation of Task Force 57 (TF-57), and later dessignated Task Force 37 (TF-37). Major actions in which the fleet was involved included the invasion of Okinawa in 1945. Towards the end of the war, it had sole responsibility for operations in the Sakishima Islands. The BPF would also have played a major part in a proposed invasion of the Japanese home islands, known as Operation Downfall (which was canceled after Japan surrendered).
The fleet included 17 aircraft carriers (with 300 aircraft), four battleships, 10 cruisers, 40 destroyers, 18 sloops, 13 frigates, 29 submarines, 35 minesweepers, other kinds of fighting ships, and many support vessels. Because of their armored flight decks, the RN aircraft carriers proved highly resistant to kamikaze attacks. A Canadian naval airman, Lt Robert Hamilton Gray (or Grey), based on HMS Formidable, was awarded the Victoria Cross while part of the BPF.
Okinawa - Formosa
Uganda (CL-66) joined Task Force 57 and in Mar/Apr 45 was employed screening
RN carriers during air strikes on the Ryukyu Islands & Formosa, and later against Japan mainland, July 15 - Aug 16, 1945 .
Truk 14June1945 - The Royal Navy's Task Group 111.2 consisting of the aircraft carrier HMS Implacable, the escort carrier HMS Ruler, four light cruisers and five destroyers, attacked Truk Atoll in the Caroline Islands to neutralize the enemy's air bases
In June she took part in the naval bombardment of Truk and Dublon Islands.
Afterwards On the end of hostilities, the fleet separated into squadrons to accept the surrender of colonies.
Following the end of hostilities, The fleet formed the naval arm of the British Commonwealth Occupation Force in Japan. This fleet was gone by year-end.
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About this page: BritTF57 - British Task Force 57 activities in Pacific War, at the time of Okinawa and Japan.
Last updated on January 22, 2005 - draft 1
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