A USAAF B-25 bomber takes off from the deck of the aircraft carrier USS Hornet en route to Tokyo for bombing mission which became known as the "Doolittle Raid" after leader of the mission Lt. Col. James H. Doolittle. on Tokyo, Saturday, April 18, 1942. The bombing attack by the United States of America on the Japanese capital Tokyo and other places on the island of Honshu during World War II, was the first air raid to strike the Japanese Home Islands. Sixteen B-25B Mitchell medium bombers were launched without fighter escort from the U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS Hornet deep in the Western Pacific Ocean, each with a crew of five men. The plan called for them to bomb military targets in Japan, and to continue westward to land in China�landing a medium bomber on Hornet was impossible. Fifteen aircraft reached China, but all crashed, while the 16th landed at Vladivostok in the Soviet Union. All but three of the 80 crew members initially survived the mission. Eight airmen were captured by the Japanese Army in China; three of those were later executed.
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