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Navy marks Battle of Midway's 70th anniversary

Navy marks Battle of Midway's 70th anniversary

CREATED Jun 4, 2012 - UPDATED: Jun 4, 2012

PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii (AP) The United States Navy is observing the 70th anniversary of the battle that changed the course of World War II in the Pacific.

On Monday, Pacific Fleet commander Adm. Cecil Haney and other officials will fly 1,300 northwest of Honolulu to Midway Atoll where Japan sent four aircraft carriers on June 4, 1942.

Tokyo wanted to draw out and destroy what remained of the U.S. Pacific Fleet six months after it attacked Pearl Harbor.

But Navy intelligence cracked the code Japan's military used to communicate over radio, giving the U.S. advance notice of Japanese plans. The tables for an ambush had turned.

The U.S. sank all four Japanese aircraft carriers on the first day of the three-day battle and put Japan on the defensive for the rest of the war.