After reverses all across the Pacific and Far east, the United States decided to strike back at Wake Island. Its proximity to Midway and Pearl harbour made it important though not critical. A victory was needed and this was an opportunity not to be missed.
USS Saratoga and USS Yorktown and a number of destroyers arrived to find a large Japanese reinforcement fleet comprising of two Battlships and a large force of supply ships and transports. Kirishima and Fuso were caught in the open sea and subjected to two days of air raids from both American carriers and were sunk.