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What is the importance of the Battle of Midway?

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Despite changing naval warfare for good with their daring raid on Pearl Harbor with aircraft-carrier-based airplanes on December 7, 1941, the Japanese admiralty, as did their American counterparts, falsely believed that battleships were still the major players in any naval war. When intelligence reports came in from scouts that the American carriers Lexington, Enterprise, and Saratoga were not at Pearl Harbor, the Japanese high command was not concerned—they knew that the bulk of the battleships were still harbored at Pearl Harbor. In fact, Japanese pilots led by Mitsuo Fuchida were positively giddy when they discovered the placement of seven battleships in a row, including the USS Arizona and USS West Virginia, which they proceeded to sink using bombs and torpedoes dropped by the potent Aichi D3A Carrier-Borne Bombers.

The fact that the three carriers were unharmed, coupled with the transfer of three more carriers, the Yorktown, the Wasp, and the Hornet , from the east coast, helped bolster the...

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