Japanese imperial headquarters say American troops are storming two of the Mariana Islands -- last major barrier on the mid Pacific road to the Philippines.
The enemy high command reports furious fighting in progress between Yank invasion troops and Jap garrison defenders. It says a mighty naval task force -- consisting of 20 transports and 100 landing barges swooped down on Saipan and Tinian islands yesterday. The bases lie some 1,500 miles below Tokyo or about the distance between New York city and St. Louis. It's also about 1,300 miles northeast of the Philippine island of Mindanao.
The Japs say the first invasion force was hurled back -- and the Japanese are now engaging the second.
Our Navy Department in Washington refuses to comment on the story.
But unofficial observers in the capital have been speculating all week on the possibility of early landings in the Marianas. Their conjectures were provoked by last weekend's massive sea and air bombardment of the strategic bases.
Saipan is only 650 miles northwest of Truk. Tinian lies just below Saipan.