Wuhan China – Day 6

November 14th, 2010 | by scottleduc |

The Flying Tigers 飛 虎 隊

Today I came across in interesting event. An America fighter plane shot down in WWII was uncovered last month in Wuhan. A point of interest for me is the fact that the Flying Tiger, an American volunteer group who help defend the Chinese against relentless, unopposed air raids before the United States was involved in the war, were stationed just south of here a couple hundred miles. I have been reading about the Flying Tigers since I was nine years old. Their efforts are still appreciated by the Chinese. People my age know who the Flying Tigers were, which is reassuring for a history aficionado like me.

The Flying Tigers Historical Organization is planning an incredible memorial at the site of the main Chinese Flying Tiger base at Guilin, China. I am so excited about the scale of the project. It’s planned to be over 13 acres and even include the cave headquarters used by the Flying Tigers leader Claire Lee Chennault.

The Battle of Wuhan

Another WWII reference came to my attention today. Wuhan was the center a major battle in WWII. In fact, it was the turning point of the Japanese advance into China. Up to this battle the Japanese had been winning each battle they started. It was at Wuhan that the Chinese took the momentum out of the Japanese campaign.

The Chinese army preserved enough strength to be able to continue opposing the considerably weakened Japanese. The Japanese’s pre-war hopes for a final showdown in Wuhan, to annihilate the main forces of Chinese army and forcing them to yield were unsuccessful. At the end of the battle, Japan had only one division left in the home island and was unable to reinforce the 7 divisions in Northeast China and Korea to counter the pressure of the 20 Soviet Far East divisions on the border. With numerous battles around Changsha, the China theatre now entered the stage of stalemate with no major Japanese offensives until Operation Ichi-Go in 1944. – Wikipedia

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