Historical Article: Fire in the Skies, Ceasefire on the Ground

historical-fire-in-the-skiesFor the U.S. Navy aviators of Task Force 38, the air war over the pacific ran right to the limit

By David Sears @ Historynet.com

FROM HIS HELLCAT OVER coastal Honshū—the main Japanese home island—U.S. Navy Lieutenant (junior grade) Henry J. O’Meara marveled to see a Tokyo Plain “so thickly studded with airfields that 10 or a dozen were visible from almost any point.” O’Meara, 21, had experienced combat, but many of his fellow aviators in the aircraft carrier Yorktown’s Fighter Squadron 88 were getting not only their first glimpse of Japan’s heartland, but a first exposure to aerial warfare. After plastering enemy fields with tons of fragmentation bombs on July 10, 1945, O’Meara and mates were brimming with swagger. However, O’Meara wrote afterward, the fliers also were “quite disappointed over the lack of Jap planes in the air.”

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