Most of the aircraft were shot down by U.S. covering patrols, while a handful of survivors made it to Luzon. If the government will make this event a National Holiday, then other parts which had their own battle will claim too. Some 250,000 troops still remained on Luzon, but the loss of air and naval support at Leyte so narrowed Gen. Yamashita's options that he now had to fight a passive defensive of Luzon,:325 the largest and most important island in the Philippines. On the east, the 19th Infantry's 2nd Battalion, under Lt. Col. Robert B. Spragins, swung east around Hill 1525 behind the enemy right flank, cutting back to Highway 2, 3 mi (4.8 km) south of 'Breakneck Ridge', blocking the Japanese supply line. Naval, air and ground forces had joined hands to bring the Allies to the Japanese-held Philippines. It was Halsey's basic philosophy of warfare which led directly to his controversial actions at Leyte Gulf. Thank you for specifically pointing it out. The Battle off Cape Engaño. – Vic. Meanwhile, on October 24th, Rear Admiral Shoji Nishimura's southern forces failed to synchronize with other Japanese central forces (Vice Admirals Shima and Kurita) because of strict radio silence that had been imposed. As might be expected, he has his ardent supporters and his vehement detractors. Starting on October 25, 1944, and for more than a month, Japanese re-supply groups called TA convoys headed for Ormoc Bay (west of Leyte), and brought to the defenders of Leyte Island the reinforcements needed to prolong the resistance well beyond what the Allies had expected. As a comparison, Luzon (the largest island of the Philippines) is just 42,458 square miles and the total land area of the Philippines is 115,831 square miles (300,000 square kilometers). :95–96 Meanwhile, on 29 October, the 32nd Infantry's 2nd Battalion, preceded by the 7th Cavalry Reconnaissance Troop, moved 15 mi (24 km) south along the east coast to Abuyog for a probe of the area, and then over the next four days patrolled west through the mountains to Baybay, all without opposition. The author of this first full biography was once close to the ranks of detractors. Waiting to engage the enemy there would be taking on the enemy where our strength is relatively greater, but a Halsey would not look on it as being on the offensive. It was during the Battle of Leyte Gulf that the Japanese forces launched the first organized Kamikaze attacks (suicide attacks by Japanese aircraft pilots against Allied naval vessels). :47 In the X Corps sector, the 1st Cavalry Division held Tacloban airfield,:40 and the 24th Infantry Division had taken the high ground on Hill 522 commanding its beachheads. Kamikaze – Wikipedia.org. War Plan Orange was based on naval reinforcements coming from Hawaii …. US Seventh Fleet :116 General Krueger ordered the 1st Cavalry to join the 24th Infantry Division in the attack south, and the X and XXIV Corps (96th Infantry Division) to block routes through the central mountain range, anticipating General Suzuki's renewed attack with the arrival of his 26th Infantry Division. Supported by the 63rd Field Artillery Battalion, the unit cleared the ridge, and the 34th Infantry continued unopposed that night through the town of Pinamopoan, recovering numerous heavy weapons abandoned by the enemy, then halted at the point where Highway 2 turns south into the mountains. The Battle of Leyte Gulf started a few days after the Allied Forces, under the command of General Douglas MacArthur, landed in Palo Beach in Leyte on October 20, 1944. 6. Still, MacArthur had vowed that he would return to the Philippines. Battles of Leyte Gulf – HistoryofWar.org This article incorporates public domain material from the United States Army Center of Military History document: "The Leyte Campaign". Our mission is to share stories that will help Filipinos and the world gain knowledge about everything in the Philippines, including its beautiful spots, rich history, unique society, and solutions towards the nation's progress. . Japanese forces successfully sank the Princeton and forced the Birmingham into early retirement. }, The crew of Fleet Aircraft Carrier Zuikaku salute as she ceases to be the flagship of the Japanese Imperial Navy. :121 Plus, Krueger had access to the 32nd and 77th Infantry Divisions, and the 11th Airborne Division, which MacArthur was staging in Leyte in preparation of the Luzon invasion.:133.