Wake Island

Wake Island

Introduction ::Wake Island


The US annexed Wake Island in 1899 for a cable station. An important air and naval base was constructed in 1940-41. In December 1941, the island was captured by the Japanese and held until the end of World War II. In subsequent years, Wake was developed as a stopover and refueling site for military and commercial aircraft transiting the Pacific. Since 1974, the island's airstrip has been used by the US military, as well as for emergency landings. Operations on the island were suspended and all personnel evacuated in 2006 with the approach of super typhoon IOKE (category 5), but resultant damage was comparatively minor. A US Air Force repair team restored full capability to the airfield and facilities, and the island remains a vital strategic link in the Pacific region.

Geography ::Wake Island


Oceania, atoll in the North Pacific Ocean, about two-thirds of the way from Hawaii to the Northern Mariana Islands

Geographic coordinates:

19 17 N, 166 39 E


total: 6.5 sq km

country comparison to the world: 244

land: 6.5 sq km

water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative:

about 11 times the size of The Mall in Washington, DC

Land boundaries:

0 km


19.3 km

Maritime claims:

territorial sea: 12 nm

exclusive economic zone: 200 nm




atoll of three low coral islands, Peale, Wake, and Wilkes, built up on an underwater volcano; central lagoon is former crater, islands are part of the rim

Elevation extremes:

lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m

highest point: unnamed location 6 m

Natural resources:


Land use:

arable land: 0%

permanent crops: 0%

other: 100% (2011)

Irrigated land:

0 sq km (2011)

Natural hazards:

occasional typhoons

Environment - current issues:


Geography - note:

strategic location in the North Pacific Ocean; emergency landing location for transpacific flights

People and Society ::Wake Island


no indigenous inhabitants

note: approximately 150 military personnel and civilian contractors maintain and operate the airfield and communications facilities (2009)

Government ::Wake Island

Country name:

conventional long form: none

conventional short form: Wake Island

Dependency status:

unorganized, unincorporated territory of the US; administered from Washington, DC by the Department of the Interior; activities in the atoll are currently conducted by the US Air Force

Legal system:

US common law

Flag description:

the flag of the US is used

Economy ::Wake Island

Economy - overview:

Economic activity is limited to providing services to military personnel and contractors located on the island. All food and manufactured goods must be imported.

Communications ::Wake Island

Telephone system:

general assessment: satellite communications; 2 Defense Switched Network circuits off the Overseas Telephone System (OTS); located in the Hawaii area code - 808

Broadcast media:

American Armed Forces Radio and Television Service (AFRTS) provides satellite radio/TV broadcasts (2009)

Transportation ::Wake Island


1 (2013)

country comparison to the world: 211

Airports - with paved runways:

total: 1

2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 (2013)

Ports and terminals:

none; two offshore anchorages for large ships

Transportation - note:

there are no commercial or civilian flights to and from Wake Island, except in direct support of island missions; emergency landing is available

Military ::Wake Island

Military - note:

defense is the responsibility of the US; the US Air Force is responsible for overall administration and operation of the island facilities; the launch support facility is administered by the US Missile Defense Agency (MDA)

Transnational Issues ::Wake Island

Disputes - international:

claimed by Marshall Islands"

The World Factbook. 2014.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Wake Island — bezeichnet: ein Atoll im nördlichen Pazifischen Ozean, siehe Wake Wake Island (Film), US amerikanischer Kriegsfilm (1942) Diese Seite ist eine Begriffsklärung zur Unterscheidung mehrerer mit demselben Wort bezeichneter …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Wake Island — [wāk] coral atoll in the N Pacific between Midway & Guam: a U.S. possession: 3 sq mi (7.8 sq km); pop. 300 …   English World dictionary

  • Wake Island — For other uses, see Wake Island (disambiguation) …   Wikipedia

  • Wake Island — an island in the N Pacific, belonging to the U.S.: air base. 3 sq. mi. (8 sq. km). * * * Wake Island Introduction Wake Island Background: The US annexed Wake Island in 1899 for a cable station. An important air and naval base was constructed in… …   Universalium

  • Wake Island — Île Wake Pour les articles homonymes, voir Wake.  Pour le film de John Farrow de 1942, voir La Sentinelle du Pacifique. Île Wake Wake Island  …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Wake Island — noun an island in the western Pacific between Guam and Hawaii • Syn: ↑Wake • Members of this Region: ↑Battle of Wake, ↑Battle of Wake Island • Instance Hypernyms: ↑island • Part Holonyms: ↑ …   Useful english dictionary

  • Wake Island — Admin ASC 1 Code Orig. name Wake Island Country and Admin Code UM.450 UM …   World countries Adminstrative division ASC I-II

  • Wake Island (disambiguation) — Wake Island has several meanings: *Wake Island the geographical location **Battle of Wake Island * Wake Island (1942 film) , a 1942 film *USS Wake Island , a US Navy aircraft carrier during the Second World War …   Wikipedia

  • Wake Island — Wake′ Is′land n. geg an island in the N Pacific, N of the Marshall Islands, belonging to the U.S. 3 sq. mi. (8 sq. km) …   From formal English to slang

  • Wake Island Airfield — Infobox Airport name = Wake Island Airfield caption = Aerial photo of Wake Island Airfield IATA = AWK ICAO = PWAK type = Private operator = U.S. Air Force location = Wake Island elevation f = 14 elevation m = 4.3 coordinates =… …   Wikipedia

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