|Only 35 Operational Aircraft Out Of 430
Jun. 19, 1944 - The Battle of the Philippine Sea began when USS Hornet (CV 12) launched strikes to destroy as many land-based Japanese planes on Saipan as possible before the carrier-based Japanese aircraft came in. The Japanese approached the American carriers in four massive waves. But fighter aircraft from Hornet and other carriers broke up all the attacks before the Japanese reached the task force. Nearly every Japanese aircraft was shot down in became commonly known as "The Marianas Turkey Shoot." Only 35 operational aircraft remained out of the 430 planes with which Japanese Adm. Ozawa had commenced the Battle of the Philippine Sea. U.S. air strikes also sank the Japanese carrier Hiji and so damaged two tankers that they were abandoned and scuttled.
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