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    Battle of the Philippine Sea (Great Marianas Turkey Shoot)  Mariana Islands
Location
The Battle of the Philippine Sea occurred on June 19, 1944 and June 20, 1944 in the Philippine Sea to the west of the Mariana Islands. Also known as the "Great Marianas Turkey Shoot" or "Marianas Turkey Shoot". Reportedly a USS Lexington (CV-16) pilot who remarked "Why, hell, it was just like an old-time turkey shoot down home!" The combatants were the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) and U. S. Navy (USN) plus aircraft and resulted in an American victory.

Wartime History
Prior to the battle, U. S. carrier aircraft conducted preparatory attacks against targets in the Mariana Islands in preparation for the U. S. amphibious landings on Saipan on June 15, 1944 and Guam on July 21, 1944.

The U. S. carriers included Task Force 58 (TF-58) includibg USS Lexington (CV-16).

Results
The Battle of the Philippine Sea was a resounding American victory. The U. S. lost 123 aircraft, one battleship damaged and 109 dead or missing. Japanese losses included 550-645 aircraft plus three aircraft carriers: Taiho, Shōkaku and Hiyō plus two oilers sunk and six other ships damaged with a estimated 2,987 dead or missing.

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Last Updated
June 15, 2019

 

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