What Happened to the Attacking Japanese Fleet?
ATTACK FORCE - VAdm Naguma Carriers Akagi Kaga Soryu Hiryu Zuikaku Shokaku SUPPORT FORCE - VAdm Mikawa Battleships Hiei Kirisima Heavy Cruisers Tone Chikuma SCOUTING FORCE - RAdm Omori Light Cruiser - flagship of destroyer flotilla Abukuma CL Destroyers Tanikaze Hamakaze Urakaze Kasumi Arare Kagero Shiranuhi Akigumo Isokaze or Asakaze ? Midway Attack Ushio Akebono or Sazanami ? SUPPLY FORCE. Tankers Kyokuto - flagship Kyokuyo or Akebono ? Kenyo Kokuyo Shinkoku Toho Toei Nippon SUBMARINE FORCE Three fleet reconnaissance: I-19, I-21, I-23. These travel with the strike fleet and are the only ones the public seems to know about and considers part of the attack. There were many more. Five attack submarines with five midget submarines strapped aboard: I-16 with A, I-18 w/E, I-20 w/D, I-22 w/B, I-24 w/C. The five midget subs, each capable of penetrating Pearl Harbor and each firing two torpedoes: Ha. A, B, C, D, E. Twenty other subs were stationed in Hawaiian waters. Squadron 1: I-9, I-15, I-17, I-25. Squadron 2: I-1, I-2, I-3, I-4, I-5, I-6, I-7. Squadron 3: I-8, I-68, I-69, I-70, I-71, I-72, I-73, I-74, I-75. Two others were sent to the West Coast: I-10 and I-26.
The thirty or so Japanese Submarine Force at Pearl Harbor is described on a separate page.
|CV Akagi||CarDiv 1||PH||Midway|
|CV Kaga||CarDiv 1||PH||Midway|
|CV Soryu||CarDiv 2||PH, WI||Midway|
|CV Hiryu||CarDiv 2||PH, WI||Midway|
|CV Shokaku||CarDiv 5||PH||CoralS||19Jun44||Cavalla (SS-244)|
|CV Zuikaku||CarDiv 5||PH||25Oct44||planes Essex, Lexington|
|BB Hiei||32,000T|| Guadalcanal|
|BB Kirishima||32,000T|| Guadalcanal|
|CA Tone||11,200T||PH, WI||Kure, 27Jul45|
|CA Chikuma||12,500T||PH, WI||25Oct44||CV planes|
|DD Akigumo||PH||11Nov44||Redfin (SS-272)|
|DD Urakaze||Kagero||PH||21Nov44||by Sealion II|
|DD Isokaze||Kagero||PH||7Apr45 w/Yamoto|
|DD Tanikaze||Kagero||PH||9June44||Harder (SS-257)|
|DD Hamakaze||Kagero||PH||7Apr45 w/Yamoto|
|DD Kagero||Kagero||PH||8May43||USMC aircraft|
|DD Shiranuhi||Kagero||PH||Surigao,27Oct44||CVE planes|
|DD Arare||Asashio||PH||5July42||Growler (SS-215)|
|DD Kasumi||Asashio||PH||Surigao||7Apr45 w/Yamoto|
|DD Asakaze||or||PH?||23Aug44||Haddo (SS-255)|
|DD Akebono||either||MI?||13Nov44||CV planes|
|DD Sazanami||or||MI?||14Jan44||Albacore (SS-218)|
|Kokuyo||14Jan44||Sand Lance (SS-381)|
Spring 1940. War Games: For twenty years the goal of the annual IJN fleet exercise had been to defeat the American fleet in the Marshalls as it rushed to rescue the Philippines per US warplan "Orange". The place of air power in the fleet gradually increased. With the movement of the US Pacific fleet to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, in May 1940, the possibility of moving the Japanese attack line east presented itself.
Jan 1941. Adm Yamamoto initiates a feasibility study of an air attack on Pearl Harbor.
May 1941. Air Staff analyst finds that an air attack is possible.
July 1941. Summer war games are directed at practicing harbor attack.
Special armor piercing bombs and shallow running torpedoes required to attack the US fleet at anchor are developed and tested.
Oct 1941. Attack tactics are developed on a model of
Pearl Harbor and surroundings.
Fleet units move to Tankan Bay, Kurile Islands, north of Japan, in radio silence.
17Nov41. Five submarines carrying midgets head for Pearl Harbor.
26Nov41. The Attack Force sorties from Tankan Bay, east into North Pacific. Fleet turns southeast.
02Dec41. Cabinet sends message, "Climb Mount Niitaka!", proceed with attack.
07Dec41 . 02:25 Minsub from I-16 passes net into Pearl Harbor channel, minisub from I-22 follows.
07Dec41 . 06:00 First air attack wave launched consisting of: 51 Val dive bombers, 49 Kate horizontal bombers, 40 Kate torpedo bombers, and 43 Zero fighters.
07Dec41 . 07:00 Second attack wave launched consisting of: 78 Val dive bombers, 54 Kate bombers, and 35 Zero fighters.
07Dec41 . 07:55 First attack begins. Fighters and some bombers attack air fields to suppress air defenses. Torpedo planes and the rest of the bombers attack "Battleship Row".
07Dec41 . 08:00 Minisub from I-16 attacks West Virginia and Oklahoma with 1000# warhead torpedoes.
07Dec41 . 08:25 Lull as first wave withdrawals.
07Dec41 . 08:35 Minisub from I-22 fires torpedoes, miss. Sunk 8:44.
07Dec41 . 08:40 Second attack wave arrives.
07Dec41 . 10:00 Last plane leaves. "Remember Pearl Harbor".
2,403 lives: Navy, 2,008; Marine Corps, 109; Army, 218; Civilian, 68.
07Dec41 . 13:00 Mission accomplished, Japanese fleet decides no third strike, turns north.
7Dec41. Japanese attack Pearl Harbor with naval aircraft from six carriers: Akagi, Kaga,
Soryu, Hiryu, Shokaku, and Zuikaku.
Japanese submarine I-26 shell and sink steam schooner Cynthia Olson about 1,000 miles northwest of Diamond Head, Hawaii. There are no survivors.
Midway Island is bombarded by destroyers Ushio and Sazanami. Marine shore batteries return the fire, claiming damage to both ships. The invasion force withdraws. Of the two US submarines deployed off Midway, Argonaut (SS-166), is unable to make a successful approach; Trout (SS-202), makes no contact with the enemy ships. Subsequent bad weather will save Midway from a pounding by planes from the Pearl Harbor Attack Force as it returns to Japan.
16Dec41. Japanese Pearl Harbor Attack Force detaches carriers Hiryu and Soryu, heavy cruisers Tone and Chikuma, and two destroyers to reinforce the second attack on Wake Island.
21Dec41. Planes from carriers Soryu and Hiryu bomb Wake Island.
22Dec41. Japanese bombers, covered by fighters from carriers Soryu and Hiryu, bomb Wake Island for the second time. The last two flyable USMC F4Fs intercept the raid.
23Dec41. Planes from carriers Hiryu and Soryu, as well as seaplane carrier Kiyokawa Maru provide close air support for the invasion of Wake Island.
19Feb42. Japanese carrier striking force attacks Darwin, Australia; 189 planes from carriers Akagi, Kaga, Hiryu and Soryu bomb shipping, airfields, and shore installations; six ships are sunk.
1Mar42 . Planes from Japanese carrier Soryu attack Pecos (AO-6) three times to sent the oiler to the bottom.
3Mar42 . Submarine Perch (SS-176), depth-charged and irreparably damaged by Japanese destroyers Ushio and Sazanami, is scuttled by her crew in Java Sea. All hands (59 men) survive the boat's loss and are taken prisoner.
5Apr42 . Japanese carrier striking force raids Colombo, Ceylon. After reconnaissance floatplane from heavy cruiser Tone finds British heavy cruisers HMS Cornwall and HMS Dorsetshire, carrier bombers from Akagi, Hiryu and Soryu sink both ships.
9Apr42 . Japanese Indian Ocean operation continues: carrier striking force raids Trincomalee, Ceylon. Japanese carrier bombers sink British carrier HMS Hermes and four supporting ships.
8May42 . Battle of the Coral Sea. Japanese Carrier Strike Force formed around carriers Shokaku and Zuikaku is located and taken under air at of those two carriers for several months, thus making them unavailable for immediate operations (Midway). Lexington is abandoned, Yorktown returns to Pearl for repair.
4June42 . Battle of Midway. Concentrating on the destruction of Midway and US air forces and diverted by land-based air attacks, the Japanese carriers were caught unprepared for the carrier air attack. Heroic but unsuccessful effort of Hornet's Torpedo Squadron 8, divert Japanese Zero defenders. US dive bombers hit and sank the carriers Akagi, Kaga, and Soryu. In the late afternoon, U.S. carrier air hit the Mobile Force again, sinking Hiryu, the fourth and last of the big Japanese carriers in action.
5July42. Submarine Growler (SS-215) sinks Japanese destroyer Arare and damages destroyers Kasumi and Shiranui off Kiska, Aleutians. Growler is damaged by depth charges.
17Aug42. Submarine Gudgeon (SS-211) damages Japanese oilers Shinkoku Maru and Nichiei Maru northwest of Truk
18Aug42. Japanese destroyers Kagero, Hakigaze, Maikaze, Urakaze, Isokaze
and Hamikaze begin landing 916 troops of the Imperial Army's Ichiki Detachment on Guadalcanal.
19Aug42. USAAF B-17s, flying from Espiritu Santo, bomb Japanese destroyers Kagero, Hagikaze and Maikaze off Guadalcanal, damaging Hagikaze off Tulagi.
15Oct42. Planes from Japanese carriers Shokaku and Zuikaku sink the destroyer Meredith off San Cristobal, Solomons .
26Oct42. Battle of Santa Cruz Islands. In
the fourth major carrier battle of 1942. Enterprise (CV-6) is damaged by planes
from carriers Junyo and Shokaku. Hornet (CV-8) is damaged by planes from Junyo,
Shokaku, and Zuikaku. South Dakota (BB-57) and San Juan (CL-54) are
damaged by planes from Junyo. SBDs from Enterprise damage carrier Zuiho.
SBDs from Hornet damage carrier Shokaku.
27Oct42. Abandoned carrier Hornet (CV-8) - damaged by bombs and torpedoes and attempted scuttling the previous day - is sunk by Japanese destroyers Akigumo and Makigumo.
30Nov42. Battle of Tassafaronga: Four heavy cruisers, one light cruiser, and six destroyers surprise seven Japanese destroyers off Tassafaronga Point, Guadalcanal. The enemy presses on to jettison supply containers to sustain Japanese troops on Guadalcanal, while torpedoes launched from destroyers Kagero, Makinami, Kuroshio, Oyashio, Kawakaze and Naganami wreak havoc on US ships, sinking Northampton (CA-26) and damaging heavy cruisers Pensacola (CA-24), New Orleans (CA-32), and Minneapolis (CA-36). Japanese destroyer Takanami is sunk by gunfire.
10Jan43. U.S. submarine Argonaut (APS-1) sunk by depth charges and gunfire from destroyers Maikaze, Isokaze, and Hamakaze while attacking a Japanese convoy in the S.W. Pacific.
29Mar43. Submarine Gudgeon (SS-211) sinks Japanese fleet tanker Toho Maru in Makassar Strait and damages tanker Kyoei Maru.
8May43 . Destroyer Kagero, damaged by mine off Rendova, Solomons, is sunk by USMC aircraft.
10Jul43. Submarine Pompano (SS-181) damages Japanese oiler Kyokuyo Maru off Osaka, Japan.
29Nov43. Submarine Paddle (SS-263) attacks Japanese fleet tanker Nippon Maru off Brown Island, eastern Carolines.
3Jan44 . Submarine Raton (SS-270) damages Japanese fleet tanker Akebono Maru east of Mindanao, P.I.
14Jan44. Submarine Scamp (SS-277) attacks Japanese convoy ESE of the Palaus, sinking fleet tanker Nippon Maru. Albacore (SS-218), nearby, sinks destroyer Sazanami. Guardfish (SS-217) sets upon same convoy and sinks fleet tanker Ken'yo Maru.
17Feb44. Nine carriers and six battleships strike Japanese installations and shipping at Truk inflicting massive damage sinking 32 ships including fleet tanker Shinkoku Maru.
25Feb44. Submarine Hoe (SS-258) attacks Japanese convoy sinking fleet tanker Nissho Maru and damaging fleet tanker Kyokuto Maru south of Davao Gulf, P.I.
13Mar44. Submarine Sand Lance (SS-381) attacks Japanese convoy off Honshu, sinking light cruiser Tatsuta and cargo ship Kokuyo Maru SSW of Yokosuka.
30Mar44. Fifth Fleet begins intensive bombing of Japanese airfields, shipping, fleet servicing facilities, and other installations at Palau, Yap, Ulithi, and Woleai in the Carolines. TF 58 planes sink 41 ships including fleet tanker Akebono Maru.
11Apr44. Submarine Redfin (SS-272) sinks Japanese destroyer Akigumo in eastern entrance to Basilan Strait, 06°43'N, 122°23'E.
9June44. Submarine Harder (SS-257) sinks Japanese destroyer Tanikaze in Sibitu Passage, 90 miles southwest of Basilan Island, 04°50'N, 119°40'E.
19June44. Battle of Philippine Sea. The Japanese lose at least 300 aircraft in what U.S. Navy pilots call the "Marianas Turkey Shoot." Submarine Albacore (SS-244) sinks Japanese new carrier Taiho, NNW of Yap; submarine Cavalla (SS-244) sinks Japanese carrier Shokaku.
20June44. TBFs from Belleau Wood sink carrier Hiyo northwest of Yap Island. TF 58 planes also damage carrier Zuikaku, small carriers Chiyoda and Ryuho, fast fleet tanker/seaplane carrier Hayasui, battleship Haruna, heavy cruiser Maya and 5 lesser ships. VAdm Mitscher orders the ships of TF 58 to show lights in order to guide returning planes home. Japanese retreat, US fleet returns to protect Saipan.
23Aug44. Submarine Haddo (SS-255) torpedoes Japanese destroyer Asakaze as the enemy warship is escorting tanker Niyo Maru, off Cape Bolinao, Luzon, P.I. Asakaze sinks near Dasol Bay after attempts at salvage fail.
21Sep44. TF 38 (VAdm Mitscher) begins strikes on Japanese shipping in Manila and Subic Bays, Clark and Nichols Fields near Manila, and the Cavite Navy Yard. At Manila, planes sink fleet tanker Kyokuto Maru and 28 other ships.
25Oct44 Occupation of Leyte. The Fast Carrier Force met the Northern
Force in the Battle Off Cape Engano, sinking the heavy carrier Zuikaku and
light carriers Chiyoda, Zuiho, and Chilose.
Heavy cruiser Mogami is scuttled by destroyer Akebono.
27Oct44. Escort carrier-based planes of TF 77, New Guinea invasion force, sink destroyer Shiranui north of Iloilo, Panay, Shinkoku.I.
5Nov44 . Carrier-based planes hitting targets in Manila Bay and off Santa Cruz damage destroyer Akebono and escort destroyer Okinawa.
13Nov44. At Cavite, Navy carrier planes sink destroyers Akebono and Akishimo, fleet tanker Ondo, and guardboat Daito Maru, 14°29'N, 120°55'E
21Nov44. Battleship Kongo and escorting destroyer Urakaza sunk by submarine Sealion II in the Formosa Strait.
29Nov44. Shinano, worlds largest carrier, torpedoed while escorted by battle-tested destroyers Hamakaze, Isokaze, and Yukikaze.
19Mar45. TF 58 (VAdm Marc Mitscher) pounds shipping at Kure and Kobe, Honshu, damaging heavy cruiser Tone.
07Apr45. TF 58 (VAdm Mitscher) attacks Japanese First Diversion Attack Force, formed around battleship Yamato, moving through East China Sea toward Okinawa. 386 planes sink Yamato and light cruiser Yahagi southwest of Nagasaki, destroyers Asashimo, Hamakaze, Isokaze and Kasumi and damage three other destroyers.
24July45. Aircraft from TF 38 launch two-day attack on the Inland Sea area of Japan. Heavy cruiser Tone is pushed aground to facilitate salvage.