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On this day:

The Battle of Midway ends

The Battle of Midway ends as the United States reverses the tide against the previously invincible Japanese navy. A thousand miles northwest of Honolulu, the strategic island of Midway became a target for Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto’s Japanese fleet.

As with Pearl Harbor, Yamamoto planned a surprise assault, but this time U.S. naval intelligence had decoded Japanese messages and the United States was prepared for the attack. An outnumbered squadron of American fighters repulsed a large force of Japanese aircraft attacking Midway, and two U.S. attack fleets surprised the Japanese fleet, destroying all four of Yamamoto’s aircraft carriers and thus signalling the beginning of the end of Japanese hegemony in the Pacific.