Historical Overview:

Wake Island is actually a group of three atolls: Wake, Peale and Wilkes. It is located in the Pacific Ocean, north of the Marshall Islands and west of Pearl Harbor. The island is home to a military base with a runway, and also has a convenient harbor for hydroplanes.

The Japanese Air Force attacked Wake Island on December 8, 1941, just a few hours after the devastating attack on Pearl Harbor. The first assault destroyed the majority of the aircraft stationed on the island. However, the four remaining F4F-3 and a small group of coastal artillery managed to defend the base for two weeks until the lack of ammunition, provisions, fuel, and the loss of the remaining aircraft forced the Wake garrison to surrender on December 23. On September 4, 1945 the island was retaken by the U.S.

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