During the Aleutian Islands Campaign, American forces invaded Japanese-held Attu and defeated the Japanese. This time the Japanese pilots were better organized and prepared. American forces reclaimed the island … “Gus” Widhelm of Scouting Eight. While the Japanese originally intended to abandon the islands … When the attack ended that afternoon Dutch Harbor oil storage tanks were burning, the hospital partly demolished, and a beached barracks ship damaged. Making use of weather cover, the Japanese first raided the naval base at Dutch Harbor on June 3, 1942. The Aleutian Island Campaign was a series of conflicts that occurred between the empire of Japan and the United States in the Aleutian Islands, which are part of modern-day Alaska. The Aleutian Islands, also called the Aleut Islands or Aleutic Islands and known before 1867 as the Catherine Archipelago, are a chain of 14 large volcanic islands and 55 smaller islands. Task Force 8 consisted of five cruisers, thirteen destroyers, three tankers, six submarines, as well as naval aviation elements of Fleet Air Wing Four.[9]. The Aleutian Islands Campaign: The History of Japan’s Invasion of Alaska during World War II - Kindle edition by Charles River Editors. Also participating in the battle was the Canadian Army. Use features like bookmarks, note taking and highlighting while reading The Aleutian Islands Campaign: The History of Japan’s Invasion of Alaska during World War II. The 5,183 personnel of the remaining Japanese occupation force had been successfully evacuated by the Japanese navy on 28 July. Historical Map of the Arctic & the Far North (7 June 1942 - Aleutian Islands Campaign: After the attack on Pearl Harbor, the Japanese expanded rapidly across Southeast Asia and the western Pacific. In early June 1942, Japanese forces attacked the American military facilities at Dutch Harbor, Alaska, kicking off the 13 month Aleutian Islands Campaign. The Aleutians were considered to be North American soil, thus enabling the Canadian government to deploy conscripts without breaking its pledge. On 15 August 1943, an invasion force of 34,426 Canadian and American troops landed on Kiska. Under the cover of fog, the Japanese had successfully removed their troops on 28 July. The Brigade included three regiments: the 1st was to go ashore in the first wave at Kiska Harbor, the 2nd was to be held in reserve to parachute where needed, and the 3rd was to land on the north side of Kiska on the second day of the assault. [11], Main articles: Japanese occupation of Kiska and Japanese occupation of Attu. The easternmost island, Unimak, is also the largest, measuring 65 by 22 miles. They were the result of friendly fire, booby traps, disease, mines, timed bombs set by the Japanese, vehicle accidents or frostbite. It was repaired and made its first test flight in the U.S. on 20 September 1942. The battlefield on Attu and the Japanese occupation site on Kiska are both National Historic Landmarks, and are included in the World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument. The Japanese invasions of Kiska on June 6 and Attu on June 7 initially met little resistance from the local Unangax, also known as Aleuts. A small Japanese force had occupied the islands of Attu and Kiska. ... and the experience of each contributed to planning subsequent Pacific island campaigns. 24 May 1943 : US troops mopped up the final Japanese opposition groups in the Aleutian Islands. Attu, Aleutian Island, June 4, 1943. 24 May 1943 : US troops mopped up the final Japanese opposition groups in the Aleutian Islands. In mid-1942 Japanese forces attacked the Aleutians, a series of islands running southwest from the Alaska Peninsula. A battle to reclaim Attu was launched on May 11, 1943, and completed following a final Japanese banzai charge on May 29. The Aleutian Islands Campaign was a struggle over the Aleutian Islands, part of the Alaska Territory, in the Pacific campaign of World War II starting on 3 June 1942. Hosogaya was instructed to destroy whatever American forces and facilities were found on Adak—the Japanese did not know the island was undefended. It was at this point that the Unangax were taken to Hokkaido, Japan and placed in an internment camp. The Aleutian Campaign took place relatively early in the war, from 1942 to 1943, in the Aleutian Island chain, a series of small islands (including Attu, Kiska, Adak, Unalaska, and others) located to the … The campaign began on June 3, 1942 with the first attacks by Japanese warplanes and ended on August 15, 1943 with an Allied victory. A large Japanese resupply effort on 26 March 1943 precipitated the Battle of the Komandorski Islands (in the Bearing Sea), the largest sea battle of the Aleutian Campaign… After the 4th demonstrated their tactical advantage, the remaining Japanese forces were reported to commit mass suicide, with some Japanese soldiers rushing medical tents, where they detonated grenades among the wounded U.S. soldiers. The 2006 documentary film Red White Black & Blue features two veterans of the Attu Island campaign, Bill Jones and Andy Petrus. Though the Navy had offered to evacuate Attu in May 1942,[12] the Attuan Unangax chief declined. The Aleutian Islands campaign, conducted by the United States in the Aleutian Islands, part of the Alaska Territory, in the American theater and the Pacific theater of World War II starting on June 3, 1942. Because United States Naval Intelligence had broken the Japanese naval codes, Admiral Chester Nimitz had learned by May 21 of Yamamoto's plans, including the Aleutian diversion, the strength of both Yamamoto's and Hosogaya's fleets, and that Hosogaya would open the fight on June 1 or shortly thereafter. [3] In the only two invasions of the United States during the war, a small Japanese force occupied the islands … Along with pictures of important people, places, and events, you will learn about the Japanese invasion of the Aleutian Islands … [13][14] The Aleutians Campaign, 1942-1943. By year's end, American and Canadian troop strength in Alaska would drop from a high of about 144,000 to 113,000. The striking force was composed of Nakajima B5N2 "Kate" torpedo bombers from the carriers Junyō and Ryūjō. He sank one and heavily damaged the others, killing or wounding 200 Japanese sailors. June 21, 2020 Top Image: … This thousand-mile-long … Island secure, the Battle of the Aleutian Islands ended. The Aleutian Islands Campaign was a struggle over the Aleutian Islands, part of the Alaska Territory, in the American theater and the Pacific theater of World War II starting on 3 June 1942. On June 4, the Japanese returned to Dutch Harbor. The main offensive against Japan, the island-hopping campaign, therefore faced less soldiers and nearly half a thousand less kamikaze pilots in the latter part of the war – one of the … In mid-1942 Japanese forces attacked the Aleutians, a series of islands running southwest from the Alaska Peninsula. The Aleutian Islands Campaign was a struggle over the Aleutian Islands, part of the Alaska Territory, in the American theater and the Pacific theater of World War II starting on 3 June 1942. Attu, and the wide-ranging Aleutian Island Campaign to which it was a part, is generally unfamiliar to the contemporary American public. "[7] The Japanese reasoned that control of the Aleutians would prevent a possible U.S. attack across the Northern Pacific. Seventeen Japanese planes found the naval base, the first arriving at 05:45. The shipwrecked SS Northwestern, badly damaged during the attack on Dutch Harbor, is listed on the National Register, as is a crash-landed B-24D Liberator on Atka Island. They met the Japanese fleet in the naval Battle of the Komandorski Islands in March 1943. During the campaign, two cemeteries were established on Attu to bury those killed in action: Little Falls Cemetery, located at the foot of Gilbert Ridge, and Holtz Bay Cemetery, which held the graves of Northern Landing Forces. US leadership gave the order to invade Attu in the Aleutian Islands on 7 May 1943. Aleutian Islands Campaign; Part of the American Theater and the Pacific Theater of World War II: American troops hauling supplies on Attu in May 1943 through Jarmin pass. As the Japanese pilots looked for targets to engage, they came under intense anti-aircraft fire and soon found themselves confronted by Eleventh Air Force fighters sent from Fort Glenn Army Air Field on Umnak. Saved by TIME. "Ice Flows, Kodiak, Alaska," painting, oil on board, by Edward T. Grigware, 1943 (74-062-a). Parshall, Jonathan; Anthony Tully (2005). Similarly, the U.S. feared that the islands would be used as bases from which to carry out a full-scale aerial attack on U.S. West Coast cities like Anchorage, Seattle, Portland, or Los Angeles. This enabled the Americans to test-fly the Zero and contributed to improved fighter tactics later in the war. On 12 May 1943, the Japanese submarine I-31 was sunk in a surface action with the destroyer Edwards 5 mi (4.3 nmi; 8.0 km) northeast of Chichagof Harbor. In August 1942, the U.S. Army established an air base on Adak Island and began bombing Japanese positions on Kiska. The Aleutian Islands campaign, conducted by the United States in the Aleutian Islands, part of the Alaska Territory, in the American theater and the Pacific theater of World War II starting on June 3, 1942. Friday, May 11, 2018. Kiska Harbor was the main base for Japanese ships in the campaign and several were sunk there, some by warships but mostly in air raids. The campaign is known as the "Forgotten Battle", due to its being overshadowed by the simultaneous Guadalcanal Campaign. Although plans were drawn up for attacking northern Japan, they were not executed. During World War II the remote Aleutian Islands, home to the Unangax̂ (Aleut) people for over 8,000 years, became a fiercely contested battleground in the Pacific. Unangan civilians were placed in internment camps in the Alaska Panhandle. With that force, Hosogaya was first to launch an … Some men flew thousands of … Photographed just after the battle of the Komandorski Islands, which took place on 26 March 1943. However, historians Jonathan Parshall and Anthony Tully have argued against this interpretation, stating that the Japanese invaded the Aleutians to protect their northern flank, and did not intend it as a diversion.[8]. On 3 and 4 June 1942, Japanese carrier-based aircraft attacked Dutch Harbor in the Aleutian Islands chain of the U.S. Alaska Territory. Col. LeStourgeon had previously designed a layout of base facilities—such as isolation of weapons and munitions depots—so as to protect against enemy attack. This thousand-mile-long archipelago saw invasion by Japanese forces, the occupation of two islands; a mass relocation of Unangax̂ civilians; a 15-month air war; and one of the deadliest battles in the Pacific Theater. This is one of the most significant yet unknown parts of World War II. The Aleutian Islands campaign, conducted by the United States in the Aleutian Islands, part of the Alaska Territory, in the American theater and the Pacific theater of World War II starting on June 3, 1942. After landing, with help from their embedded Inuit guides, their relatively small force climbed and secured advantageous positions along Fishhook Ridge overlooking the area where American troops were trapped by Japanese forces. Japan thereafter abandoned all attempts to resupply the Aleutian garrisons by surface vessels, and only submarines would be used. Captured Japanese Zero. Ten days later, Grunion was attacked by three Japanese submarine chasers in Kiska Harbor, with two of the patrol craft sunk and one other damaged. Prior to the attack on Dutch Harbor, the Army's 4th Infantry Regiment, under command of Percy E. LeStourgeon, were established at Fort Richardson. Reg. ... Halseys forces, supported by Thirteenth Air Force, began a campaign to capture Japanese strongholds in the Northern Solomons. This The Aleutian campaign devolved into a standoff during the winter of 1942-43, in part because of the brutal Alaskan winter. Pages containing cite templates with deprecated parameters, Articles incorporating text from Wikipedia, History of the West Coast of the United States, Battles and operations of World War II involving Canada, World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument, Organization of the Imperial Japanese Navy Alaskan Strike Group, United States Army Center of Military History, http://www.history.army.mil/brochures/aleut/aleut.htm, https://www.history.com/topics/world-war-ii/battle-of-the-aleutian-islands, https://books.google.com/books?id=SfTQDAAAQBAJ&pg=PT1003, http://www.navweaps.com/index_oob/OOB_WWII_Pacific/OOB_WWII_Midway.htm, http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/USN/Aleutians/USN-CN-Aleutians-3.html#page22, https://books.google.com/books?id=zEQrQEdWfFEC&pg=PT39, "CHRONOLOGY OF THE 10TH MOUNTAIN DIVISION IN WORLD WAR II 6 January 1940 — 30 November 1945", http://www.10thmtndivassoc.org/chronology.pdf, https://web.archive.org/web/20100121062944/http://www.hlswilliwaw.com/aleutians/attu/html/attu-kia.htm, https://books.google.com/books?id=lGSBXgAGTUQC&pg=PA5, History of United States Naval Operations in World War II, "Operations at Amchitka, Attacks on Attu", Red White Black & Blue – feature documentary about The Battle of Attu in the Aleutians during World War II, https://military.wikia.org/wiki/Aleutian_Islands_Campaign?oldid=4506751. Many of the United States locations involved in the campaign, either directly or indirectly, have been listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and several have been designated National Historic Landmarks. To learn more about the U.S. Navy's role in the campaign and to access unique archival materials available at NHHC, please follow the links below: Office of Naval Intelligence Combat Narrative: The Aleutians Campaign, June 1942–August 1943 (1945), Occupation of Kiska—Aerology and Amphibious Warfare, 15 August 1943  (NAVAER 50-30T-2, 1944), NHHC Director's H-Gram 016-1: "The Battle of the Komandorski Islands and the Charge of USS Bailey, 26 March 1943", NHHC Director's H-Gram 016-2: "The Aleutians Campaign, 1942–43". Startled by the American response, the Japanese quickly released their bombs, made a cursory strafing run, and left to return to their carriers. American troops endure snow and ice during the Battle of Attu in May 1943. Aleutian Islands 3 June 1942 - 24 August 1943. [10] The rest either became lost in the fog and darkness and crashed into the sea or returned to their carriers. A map of the Bering Sea region. The islands… They extend in an arc southwest, then northwest, for about 1,100 miles (1,800 km) from the tip of the Alaska Peninsula to Attu Island, Alaska. A research team sponsored by the National Atmospheric and Oceanic Administration (NOAA) discovered the destroyer's stern section in the frigid waters near the island on 17 July 2018. Royal Canadian Air Force No. Their vehicles could not move across the island's rugged terrain. Media in category "Aleutian Islands campaign" The following 78 files are in this category, out of 78 total. On 5 July, the submarine Growler, under command of Lieutenant Commander Howard Gilmore, attacked three Japanese destroyers off Kiska. On May 30, 1946, a Memorial Day address was given by Captain Adair with a 21-gun salute and the sounding of Taps. US military propaganda poster from 1942/43 for Thirteenth Naval District, United States Navy, showing a rat with stereotypical attire representing Japan, approaching a mousetrap labeled "Army – Navy – Civilian", on a background map of the Alaska Territory, referred to as future "Death-Trap For The Jap". With that force, Hosogaya was first to launch an air attack against Dutch Harbor, then follow with an amphibious attack upon the island of Adak, 480 miles (770 km) to the west. For some 8,000 years, Aleuts (who call themselves Unangan) were the sole inhabitants of the islands, and by the time of Russian exploration there were an estimated 25,000 Aleuts scattered throughout the … Meanwhile, the construction of forward U.S. air bases on Alaskan territory applied additional pressure on the garrisons of enemy-occupied islands of Attu and Kiska. After the war, the frozen tundra began to take back the cemeteries, so in 1946 all American remains were relocated as directed by the soldier's family or to Fort Richardson near Anchorage, Alaska. The campaign in the Aleutians was characterized by an uneven pace of sea and air actions, dependent as much on weather conditions as on available forces. Part of the huge U.S. fleet at anchor, ready to move against Kiska. Adleman, Robert H.; Walton, George H. (2004). The Japanese instead dug into high ground far from the shore; this resulted in fierce combat, with a total of 3,929 U.S. casualties; 580 men were killed, 1,148 were wounded, with another 1,200 men suffering severe injuries from the cold weather. The following is not meant to be a comprehensive treatment of the Aleutian Islands campaign, but is rather just the highlights of the campaign focused on U.S. and Japanese naval actions. The islands… The invaders landed to find the island abandoned; the Japanese forces had left two weeks earlier. When people think of the war in the Pacific thoughts, go to the sprawling jungles of Guadalcanal and wide stretches of ocean. The naval commander was Rear Admiral Robert A. Theobald, commanding Task Force 8 afloat, who as Commander North Pacific Force (ComNorPac) reported to Admiral Nimitz in Hawaii. The battle also marked the first time Canadian conscripts were sent to a combat zone in World War II. 14 Squadrons saw active service in the Aleutian skies and scored at least one aerial kill on a Japanese aircraft. The Aleutian Islands Campaign was a military campaign conducted by the United States in the Aleutian Islands, part of the Alaska Territory, in the American theater and the Pacific theater of World War II … As a corporal in 1943, he co-authored The Battle of the Aleutians with Cpl. In the summer of 1942, the Americans recovered the Akutan Zero, an almost intact Mitsubishi A6M2 Zero fighter. As a result, they did little damage to the base. The Aleutian Island Campaign was a series of conflicts that occurred between the empire of Japan and the United States in the Aleutian Islands, which are part of modern-day Alaska. Also participating in the battle was the Canadian Army. USS William D. Porter (DD-579) in Massacre Bay, Attu, Aleutian Islands, with other destroyers, … Note heavy arctic battle clothing (80-G-50232). After furious, brutal, often hand-to-hand combat, the Japanese force was virtually exterminated. Combat Art: Alaska During the Pacific War, The Aleutians Campaign Combat Narrative, 75th Anniversary Edition (Click image to download PDF, 10.2 MB). 111 and No. Reasons for this include the utter geographic remoteness of the area, the extreme climatic conditions, and because both the United States and Japan deployed only the minimal necessary forces in comparison with other theaters of operation. The Aleutian Islands Campaign: The History of Japan's Invasion of Alaska during World War II chronicles one of the most famous and unique campaigns in the Pacific. I think it is the most important strategic place in the world. The Aleutians Campaign, 1942-1943. 21st Bomb Squadron B-24 Liberator Amchitka Alaska Mar 1943.jpg 1,210 × 841; 265 KB The Aleutian Islands Campaign: The History of Japan’s Invasion of Alaska during World War II chronicles one of the most famous and unique campaigns in the Pacific. In the only two invasions of the United States during the A … The Navy radio station at Dutch Harbor burning after the Japanese Attack, 4 June 1942. He came out of the war suffering from emphysema. During World War II the remote Aleutian Islands, home to the Unangax̂ (Aleut) people for over 8,000 years, became a fiercely contested battleground in the Pacific. The Aleutian Islands Campaign was a struggle over the Aleutian Islands, part of the Alaska Territory, in the Pacific campaign of World War II starting on 3 June 1942. Then, in a bid to draw out and destroy the outnumbered US navy, the Japanese launched twin offensives against the Aleutian Islands … However, the Japanese attacks on Dutch Harbor were actually intended to complement the Midway operation, with the purpose of setting the conditions for a Japanese occupation of the Aleutian Islands, which in turn was to prevent the United States from using them as a base to attack Japan from the north. These Islands are most known for the battles and skirmishes that occurred there during the Aleutian Islands Campaign of World War II. Additionally, three Canadian armed merchant cruisers and two corvettes served in the Aleutian campaign but did not encounter enemy forces. In addition, 614 Americans died from disease, and 318 from miscellaneous causes, mainly Japanese booby traps or friendly fire. A small Japanese force had occupied the islands of Attu and Kiska. WWII had some very distinct theaters of war. MacGarrigle, George L.; Center of Military History. For various reasons, the Aleutians campaign, which continued into the summer of 1943, has remained obscure in comparison to the roughly concurrent Guadalcanal/Eastern Solomons campaign and the Allied landings in North Africa. Approximately 120 islands comprise the Aleutian chain, which stretches from the tip of the Alaskan peninsula to within 90 miles of Kamchatka. American and Canadian troops later launched an invasion of Kiska, but Japanese forces … Remembering the Aleutian Campaign of World War II. Media in category "Aleutian Islands campaign" The following 78 files are in this category, out of 78 total. Castner's Cutthroats were part of the force, but the invasion consisted mainly of units from the U.S. 7th Infantry Division. Two Japanese cruisers were damaged, with 14 men killed and 26 wounded. 1982. Adding to problems for the U.S. forces, soldiers suffered from frostbite because essential cold weather supplies could not be landed, nor could soldiers be relocated to where needed because vehicles would not operate on the tundra. June 21, 2020 Top Image: Barracks buildings at Fort Mears burn following the Japanese attack on June 3, 1942. However, the foul weather in turn caused the Japanese to cancel plans to invade Adak with 1,200 men. Well, one campaign, now often … Only 28 Japanese soldiers were taken prisoner, none of them officers. Nurses fishing, Dutch Harbor, Aleutian Campaign, Alaska, 1943. On August 15, 1943, an invasion force landed on Kiska in the wake of a sustained three-week barrage, only to discover that the Japanese had withdrawn from the island on July 29. Attu Island Iwo Jima Aircraft Photos Military Personnel American Soldiers Life Pictures Second World Rare Photos World War Two Meant to distract the American fleet from the planned attack on Midway Island, Japanese forces captured Attu Island and Kiska Island on June 6 and 7, 1942. Army strength, less air force personnel, at those three bases totaled no more than 2,300, composed mainly of infantry, field and antiaircraft artillery troops, and a large construction engineer contingent, which was used in the construction of bases. Like precarious stepping stones, the Aleutian Islands span the seas between the New and Old Worlds - reaching westward from the Alaska Peninsula to within 500 miles of … The only casualties were from friendly fire when a Canadian soldier mistakenly shot at American forces, starting sporadic friendly-fire shooting from both sides in the dense fog, as well as a plaguing of mines, timed bombs and accidents, where most American troops lost their lives during the course of the operation.[15]. Here the Japanese remained, primarily in a defensive situation,, In mid-March, the Navy blockaded the islands and sunk or drove off supply ships. The Japanese defensive strategy to the American attacks included Colonel Yasuyo Yamasaki not to have his forces defend against the Americans landings. Colloquium on Contemporary History 1989-1998, DANFS - Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships, Needs and Opportunities in the Modern History of the U.S. Navy, Permitting Policy and Resource Management, "Ex Scientia Tridens": The U.S. As a diversionary move in conjunction with their strike against Midway, the Japanese in June 1942 bombed Dutch Harbor in the Aleutian Island chain and landed troops on Kiska and Attu islands. US 7th Infantry Division landed on Attu, Aleutian Islands. The Army Air Force's Eleventh Air Force consisted of 10 B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombers and 34 B-18 Bolo medium bombers at Elmendorf Airfield, and 95 P-40 Warhawk fighters divided between Fort Randall AAF at Cold Bay and Fort Glenn AAF on Umnak. soldiers dispatched through Dutch Harbor to Attu Island. Abner Read''s stern was blown off on 18 August 1943 during operations off of Kiska by a Japanese sea mine strike. Nurses fishing, Dutch Harbor, Aleutian Campaign, Alaska, 1943. USS William D. Porter (DD-579) in Massacre Bay, Attu, Aleutian Islands… Aleutian Islands 3 June 1942-24 August 1943 ... On 24 August 1943, Corlett declared the island secure, marking the end of the Aleutian Islands Campaign. The 4th Inf. During the Aleutian Island Campaign of WWII, the capture of Attu eliminated the Japanese Aleutian occupation and enabled the United States to launch raids against the Japanese from the north. Along with pictures of important people, places, and events, you will learn about the Japanese invasion of the Aleutian Islands … However, only half of the striking force reached their objective. American burial teams counted 2,351 Japanese dead, but it was thought that hundreds more Japanese bodies had been buried by bombardment during the battle. One of the bloodiest World War II battles in the Pacific was waged 75 years ago this month on Attu Island in Alaska's Aleutian Islands. Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto provided the Japanese Northern Area Fleet, commanded by Vice-Admiral Boshiro Hosogaya, with a force of two non-fleet aircraft carriers, five cruisers, twelve destroyers, six submarines, and four troop transports, along with supporting auxiliary ships. On the afternoon of 2 June, a naval patrol plane spotted the approaching Japanese fleet, reporting its location as 800 miles (1,300 km) southwest of Dutch Harbor. The force also included about 5,300 Canadians, mostly from the 13th Canadian Infantry Brigade of the 6th Canadian Infantry Division, and the 1st Special Service Force, later known as the "Devil's Brigade," a 2,000-strong Canadian-American commando unit formed in 1942 in Montana and trained in winter warfare techniques. [6] In the only two invasions of the United States during the war, a small Japanese force occupied the islands of Attu and Kiska, where the remoteness of the islands and the challenges of weather and terrain delayed a larger U.S.-Canadian force sent to eject them for nearly a year. Dashiell Hammett spent most of World War II as an Army sergeant in the Aleutian Islands, where he edited an Army newspaper. On 24 August 1943, Corlett declared the island secure, marking the end of the Aleutian Islands Campaign. The heavy cruiser Salt Lake City under fire off the Komandorski Islands. Surviving elements of the military bases at Adak, Umnak, and Dutch Harbor are National Historic Landmarks. Japanese troops raise the Imperial battle flag on Kiska on 15 August.... Fishing, Dutch Harbor damaged the others, killing or wounding 200 Japanese sailors Islands southwest. Photos from WWII the Aleutians with Cpl over a ridge into a Japanses position the. 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