Operation Cockpit file photo

Operation Cockpit and Operation Transom

19 Apr 1944 - 17 May 1944

Contributor: C. Peter Chen

On 19 Apr 1944, American carrier Saratoga and British carrier Illustrious launched an air raid on Japanese port and oil facilities on Sabang Island off the northern tip of Sumatra under the code name Operation Cockpit. The carriers were accompanied by a two task forces of 20 other warships, not counting the carriers. Force 69 was commanded by British Eastern Fleet commander Admiral Sir James Somerville and was consisted of the battleships Queen Elizabeth, Valiant, and Richelieu, supported by an array of other ships; Force 70 contained battlecruiser Renown, carriers Saratoga and Illustrious, and other ships. At 0530 that morning, 46 bombers (17 British, 29 American) and 37 fighters (13 British, 24 American) were launched from the carriers, catching the Japanese by surprise. Sabang harbor was bombing, damaging two merchant ships, two destroyers, and one escort vessel. Lho Nga airfield was also targeted, damaging aircraft, barracks, and communications station, while a large oil tank was set on fire by a direct hit. When British submarine returned to the scene hours later, she reported that fires still raged. Only one Allied aircraft was lost during the raid.

On 17 May 1944, a repeat attack under the code name of Operation Transom was launched. It was similarly successful.

Source: Wikipedia.

Photographs

Japanese oil tanker, destroyer, and harbor facilities burning after being attacked by Allied aircraft during Operation Cockpit, Sabang, Sumatra, 19 Apr 1944




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More on Operation Cockpit and Operation Transom
Participant:
» Somerville, James

Location:
» Dutch East Indies

Ship Participants:
» Illustrious
» London
» Newcastle
» Queen Elizabeth
» Renown
» Richelieu
» Saratoga
» Valiant


Operation Cockpit and Operation Transom Photo Gallery
Japanese oil tanker, destroyer, and harbor facilities burning after being attacked by Allied aircraft during Operation Cockpit, Sabang, Sumatra, 19 Apr 1944




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