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  • Writer's pictureGeorge Castrioti

November 30th, 1942 - The Battle of Tassaforonga

Conflict: World War II

Combatants: Americans vs. Japanese

Location: Pacific

Outcome: American victory

Determined to stop the "Tokyo Express", the Japanese re-supply and reinforce Guadalcanal, an American fleet of five cruisers and seven destroyers under command of Rear Admiral Carleton H. Wright confronted seven enemy destroyers in the Ironbottom Sound commanded by Rear Admiral Raizo Tanaka. While the Americans managed to sink one destroyer, the Japanese fired off a salvo of torpedoes before escaping which killed 400 sailors, damaged three cruisers and sank a fourth. But the Americans had forced the Japanese to retreat without landing troops on the island.

Ships of U.S. Task Force 67 underway off Guadalcanal just before the Battle of Tassafaronga, 30 November 1942 (U.S. Navy Archives)

Points of Interest:

  • Tassafaronga was the last of six naval engagement during the Battle for Guadalcanal.

  • The Japanese ceased anymore attempts to reinforce Guadalcanal, but managed to evacuate 12,000 troops from the island before it was secured by American forces.

Rear Admiral Raizo Tanaka by an unknown photographer

Rear Admiral Carleton H. Wright by an unknown photographer

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