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    Mariana Islands (Marianas)  

Location
Tinian, Saipan, and Guam are the major islands in the Marina Island Group.

Wartime History
Prewar American territory was captured by the Japanese on December 8, 1941 three hours after the attack on Pearl Harbor.
During the war, the islands were developed into major airfields and bases.   At the height of its defense, there were 19,000 men under General Takashuina based on the island.

During June 1944, the "Great Marianas Turkey Shoot" air battle off the coast of Saipan saw the destruction of over 300 Japanese aircraft. The same month "Operation Forager" the invasion of Saipan, Tinian and Guam began and all three islands were liberated during the summer of 1944. Following liberation, the islands served as bases for the B-29 Superfortress bombing campaign against the Japanese home islands. The bombers that delivered the first atomic weapons used in combat took off from Tinian.

Today
Guam is a US territory. The Northern Mariana Islands are a Commonwealth of the United States.

 Attacked by US forces in August 1944
 Guam's Harbor located near the center of the island's west coast
 Peninsula on the western shore and airfield
  Northern Mariana Islands

Saipan

 Strong Japanese defense turned suicidal after landings in June 1944
 Airfield complex developed by Americans for B-29's
  Japanese airfield and wrecks.
 Small island 75 miles from Saipan
 Island north of Saipan
 Island north of Saipan
 Island north of Saipan
 Island north of Saipan
 Island north of Saipan

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Last Updated
May 22, 2017

 

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