Japanese aircraft carrier Sōryū

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Coordinates: 30°38′N 179°13′W / 30.633°N 179.217°W / 30.633; -179.217

Soryu (蒼龍 Sōryū?, meaning "blue/green dragon") was an aircraft carrier of the Imperial Japanese Navy. She took part in the attack on Pearl Harbor and was sunk at the battle of Midway.[1]

Sōryū was built at Kaigun Kosho, Kure, Japan and commissioned on 29 December 1937[1]. As opposed to some earlier Japanese carriers which were redesigns on battlecruiser (Akagi) or battleship (Kaga) hulls, she was designed from the start as an aircraft carrier. At close to 65 km/h (35 kts)[1], she was the fastest carrier in the world at launch.

At the outbreak of the Pacific War, commanded by Captain Ryusaku Yanagimoto, Sōryū, in Carrier Division 2, was one of six carriers making up the Kido Butai (Striking Force) that attacked Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941. She launched two waves of air strikes against the US Naval base. Her first wave targeted Nevada, Tennessee, and West Virginia with armour-piercing bombs and Utah, Helena, California, and Raleigh with torpedoes, as well as attacked grounded aircraft at Barbers Point. Her second wave targeted California, Raleigh, Kaneohe and Navy Yard installations.

Combat history

From 21 December to 23 December 1941 Sōryū launched air strikes against Wake Island. In January 1942 she supported the invasion of the Palau Islands and the Battle of Ambon. On 19 February 1942 Sōryū launched air strikes against Darwin, Australia. In March 1942 she took part in the Battle of the Java Sea, helping sink the US tanker Pecos.

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