RE: GULP! (Full Version)

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tocaff -> RE: GULP! (5/26/2009 8:11:10 PM)

January 23, 1942 The Phillipines

Mac reads the reports and the news isn't good. He's used to this now but it still angers him that the planned for relief of the Phillipines will not materialize. He has demanded and pleaded for help but it's all fallen on deaf ears. Clark has been assaulted again and the fort level is at 3 now. The Japanese have used 76K troops and suffered loses of 847/31/4 while his forces numbering 27K have lost 1584/40/2 in the fighting. This doesn't bode well for the defenders. Meanwhile Naga has been hit by 23K Japanese, who lost 26/8/0, while the defenders, who numbered 9K lost 45/1/0.

In China Changsha is yet again stormed by 86K Japanese. The 45K Chinese defenders inflict casualties of 126/2/4 on the Japanese while they lose 184/2/0.

In the bowels of the Pentagon Ed reads over the comms and sees that Buin and Toboali have capitulated. He leaves his office, goes Bill's and gets pins for the wall map. Bill isn't in the office as he has been ordered by Ed to see a doctor. They have agreed that a civilian would best serve the career minded Bill for the time being.

The San Francisco continues to plod on towards Pearl, but the issue of her survival is very much in doubt in these sub infested waters. Her damage levels are 69 sys, 30 flt and the fires are all out.

The Cummings looks like she'll be able to make the safety of Pearl as she is still able to make 19 kts, if they slip through the subs operating to the south of PH. Her damage reads 44 sys, 43 flt and all fires out.

The Houston TF arrives in Brisbane, replenishes stores and fuel and the crews rush about trying to make repairs to systems after spending much of the past 6 weeks at sea.

All convoys continue on their way unmolested.

Ships are now constantly being loaded on the West coast of the US in readying for the next westward bound convoy.

In Russia Army Group Center retakes Sukhinichi from the Russians. This enrages Stalin as his staff had assured him that the winter would halt the Germans and allow his forces to take the offensive. He demands to know about his Far Eastern forces and is told that the build up of the troops there is going as planned. The Russians are training hard and troops will begin moving to their new basing assignment soon. The Japanese have done nothing to violate the uneasy truce that exists between these two antagonists.

In a tunnel at Corregidor

tocaff -> RE: GULP! (5/27/2009 6:22:43 PM)

January 24, 1942

Naga is attacked by 33K Jap troops who suffer the loss of 544/19/2 at the hands of the 9K strong Phillipinos who lose 64/1/0. Mandalay is attacked and taken by the Japanese. Ed is starting to understand why Bill is depressed and suffering abdominal pain. Bill has informed him that the doctor ran a battery of tests on him and will have the results soon. In the meantime he has been ordered to eat only bland foods, no spices, no booze and to drink Coke syrup.

Cummings will make PH in another 3 days.

San Francisco is having flotation problems as the sea is starting to win the battle and the issue is in doubt.

Pearl Harbor has directed an ASW TF to divert to the southern approaches to cover these ships and others. Another ASW TF will be formed and dispatched to escort in the SF.

Tarpon is edging closer to the longed for liberty that will be available to the crew at Suva. Red is taking lots of heat from the crew about being to young to drink.

The SS Palawan continues her way towards the safety of Pearl Harbor and with each passing our the crew is feeling a growing sense of relief that they'll make it.

At 10 Downing Street Churchill is demanding to know what went wrong that Mandalay fell to the Japanese so easily. He's asking about the collapsing front in Burma and what will be done to save India.

The fall of Changsha has left Chian Kai-shek and his staff with a large hole in the Chinese defensive lines. Retreating troops are being sent to Chunking to refit and defend that city.

"Is there nothing to slow the Japanese down?" asks a weary FDR. Gen George Marshall tells him that troops from Pearl are going to be dispatched to other islands to screen the Hawaiian Islands from attack. Further army formations are readying in San Francisco to be shipped out to various points in the Pacific. "What we need the most are more support formations so that aircraft can be shipped out from California. We also need more CVs and fast BBs to deal with the IJN. Hell, we need more of everything." he adds. FDR replies that the immediate concern is surviving until all of these things start arriving. The newly sworn in citizens of the US are drilling with broomsticks and FDR says that he will see the United States of America victorious with an unstoppable war machine.

tocaff -> RE: GULP! (5/28/2009 9:45:40 PM)

January 25, 1942

Bill hands Ed a stack of comms which contain more bad news. The IJN has bombarded Tarakan twice. Sag Sag has seen Japanese troops land. Wuchow has fallen. Ed asks Bill if he's heard from the doctor yet and gets a negative response. This being Sunday there's not much Ed can do to motivate Bill concerning this. Bill is afraid of what he might hear so he's in no hurry to call the doctor's office tomorrow.

Tarpon will make Suva in about 1 1/2 days.

Houston's TF continue making repairs at Brisbane.

Cummings looks like she'll reach Pearl Harbor in two days.

The San Francisco is still struggling to make Pearl. The issue is in doubt as the shoring of the buckled bulkhead has given way yet again. The damage control party works endlessly to stem the flow of water. They deploy every pump they've got and it's still not enough. The skipper weighs slowing down and decides to continue to make their maximum speed of nine knots.

Transports and tankers are in the final stages of loading and then they'll be off to Auckland.

In California a huge number of various ship types continue loading the materials to effectively wage war. A convoy will be forming shortly that'll head for Pearl Harbor. Dock workers are joking that the Hawaiian Islands will sink under the weight of all of the stores being shipped there. A war machine consumes huge quantities of everything and the Pacific war is starting to look as if it'll be a logistical nightmare to the planners.

-3 Wildcat on a training mission


tocaff -> RE: GULP! (5/29/2009 2:13:54 PM)

January 26, 1942

Bill arrives at the office early Monday morning and finds Ed already sifting through a mountain of comms. Landings are continuing at Sag Sag and Tarakan and the initial assaults take the bases. Johore Bharu is attacked by 112K Japanese troops and their loses are 1732/72/8 while the Commonwealth defenders, who number 15K, lose 538/11/0. Fort level is at 3 and supplies are adequate. Ed stops Bill from having a cup of coffee and reminds him that a call to the doctor's office is in order this morning. Bill reluctantly agrees.

The DD Cummings arrives at Pearl Harbor with 44 sys and 47 flt damage. Her crew has done an excellent job of saving their ship.

The CA San Francisco is still fighting for her life. She is able to maintain 9 knots and has 69 sys and 42 flt damage levels. An ASW TF has arrived and sweeps the waters around the SF. They detect and attack an IJN sub.

The Tarpon is docked at Suva and the men she rescued from the Phillipines debark. Red has found a bar and is already blind drunk. The Tarpon's crew are busily blowing off steam too, though a couple of them are keeping an eye on Red.

The AK Palawan will reach French Frigate Shoals in two days. Her crew and master share the growing anticipation of reaching the safe haven that Pearl harbor offers.

The Dutch subs SS KXVIII and SS O23 both attack DDs and each of them score a hit. They both suffer through brutal DC attacks afterwards.

The British sub Trusty nails yet another freighter, but this time the escort scores 4 shell hits on her and the crew must abandon her.

The stream of merchantmen into Pearl is slowing as these ships have gathered in their assigned ports having suffered light loses. The USN plans to start sending more convoys, but of smaller size, on the supply runs.

The German Afrika Korps has taken Msus and the 4th Indian division is forced to retreat from Derna to Michili or risk being cut off.

The loss of the Trusty hurts as she was my most lethal weapon so far. I'm pulling LCUs back to Singapore from Johore Bahru as they are rendered virtually useless by the constant Japanese attacks. The troops in Singapore refit and brace for the final battle in Malaya until the Allies manage to return. In the Phillipines Steve is readying for a big push as it was quiet today. My defense line in China is breaking. I expect an invasion of Australia after Steve is done with the Dutch. He also looks keen on pushing into India. I can only hope that he tries to do both and as a result weakens himself because if he focuses on either one I'll be in deep stuff.

tocaff -> RE: GULP! (5/31/2009 6:49:58 PM)

January 27, 1942  Washington DC

Ed is trying to make Bill understand that if he doesn't chase after the doctor and fing out what's wrong with him he'll be no good to anybody.  Bill admits that he's scared to find out what's wrong.  "Hell", he says sheepishly, "we're in a war and that's what I'm trained for and I'm scared of not doing my part in it."  Ed knows what Bill is saying as he feels the same way.  "Get your ass on the phone and make an appointment to see the doctor or I'll drag you there myself", Ed says.  Bill mutters an affirmative and they return to the day's comms.  Wewak has been invaded.  Clark suffered another assault by 83K Japanese and inflicted loses of 1412/65/14 on them.  The defenders, 24K strong, lose 1093/47/0.  Changsha has fallen to 181K Japanese troops.  The 45K defenders retreat from the city and loses are 2224/86/7 and 1530/40/0, respectively.

The submarine Cuttlefish has arrived at Anchorage and will replenish her stores before getting new orders.

The San Francisco suffers growing peril due to flotation problems as her pumps can't keep up with it.  The flt level is now 53 and with luck they can reach Pearl in 1 or 2 days.  The ASW TF stays with her to insure her safety from lurking subs.

Benham is disbanded in Pearl Harbor and her crew has liberty.  Phil decides to skip the bars and heads for an afternoon of sun at the beach in Honolulu.

Tarpon has set course for Pearl Harbor and a number of her crew are in less than optimal condition.  Red was carried back to the boat by his nursemaids after a fight with a local girl who wanted to keep him, "because he's so cute and gentle."  They figured that a bar girl was not what Red really needed.

A convoy will leave San Diego soon and will pick up additional ships at Los Angeles and then continue on to San Francisco where still more vessels will join it for the trip westwards.

FDR is shocked by the news that Irish Premier, de Valera, has protested the arrival of US troops in Ulster.  He bristles at the thought of any Axis sympathies in Ireland because of hate for the British.

Stalin is keeping an eye on things as his winter attacks on the Germans are meeting with varied results along the huge front that is his war with Hitler.  "The Japs will be made to pay for their arrogance in due time," he tells his ministers.

The lull in combat is not real as I've neglected to include all of the bombardments the Japanese troops inflict upon my brave soldiers.  The Japanese air assets are constantly strafing and bombing my forces also. 

tocaff -> RE: GULP! (6/1/2009 6:40:24 PM)

January 28, 1942  Washington DC

Bill has been to the doctor's office in the morning and arrives at the Pentagon in mid afternoon.  Ed immediately sees a long look on Bills face, but will wait for the doctor's diagnosis when Bill is ready to tell him.  They set to work and see that the Japanese, 11.8K strong have attacked Clark again while the defenders 22.6K repulse the attack.  Reports of loses read:  Japanese 183/4/0 and Allied 196/11/0.  Another report calls for the badly needed resupply of the troops, who are also hungry.  Weewak has fallen to the Japs.  After the comms are on their way to the proper places within the Pentagon Bill wearily sits down and tells Ed that the doctor has told him that he's got peptic ulcers and that only bland food and milk will comprise his diet for the near future.  Ed tells him that the stress of the job isn't going to help much, but Bill says "there's a price we all must pay in a war.  Please don't tell anybody of my condition and with any luck I'll be better soon."

The AK Palawan is now approximately 180 miles east of French Frigate Shoals and her crew become more and more excited by the hour as they draw ever closer to Pearl.

The Tarpon continues her lonely trek across the Pacific with the lookouts being reminded that though they've seen nothing since the outbreak of the war it could change in a moment and be deadly.

The San Francisco arrives in Pearl Harbor with the following damage:  70/54/0.  Her survival was due to the efforts of her damage control parties and their being relieved by other members of the crew, who were also trained in DC, as the fight was a 24 hour per day job to keep the cruiser afloat.

On the Eastern Front Timoshenko's offensive in the Ukraine slows after a 60 mile deep thrust into the German lines.

tocaff -> RE: Hunger (6/2/2009 6:59:44 PM)

January 29, 1942

Ed tells Bill that Johore Bahru has been attacked again by 121K Japanese troops. Their loses are pegged at 928/27/1. The Commonwealth defenders, who number 11.8K, lose 839/20/0. These remaining two brigades are covering the retreat of other shattered units who stream into Singapore. Supplies are running low there and no help will be sent. Bill shakes his head and wonders when and where the Japanese will be stopped.

Convoys are running unmolested and it seems that the initial surge of IJN subs has lessened. This situation is probably due more to logistics than the loses that the Allies have inflicted to date.

Tarpon is still running her course without any sightings.

Houston continues with minor repairs. She and her sisters are shackled by the continuing lurking of carriers and battlewagons.

It appears that for a couple of days the Japanese are in a transport mode as invasions of bases have slowed. Once Singapore falls there'll be plenty of workers (POWs) for the railroad in Burma that the Japanese are building. There'll be plenty of LCUs freed up too. The Phillipines won't be to far behind as the troops are hungry.

In Africa the Germans have taken Benghazi and a large amount of supplies.

The RAF Bomber Command tries unsuccessfully to sink the German BB Tirpitz which just by being in Norway threatens convoys destined for the Soviet Union.

Capt. Harlock -> RE: Hunger (6/2/2009 8:29:56 PM)


These remaining two brigades are covering the retreat of other shattered units who stream into Singapore. Supplies are running low there and no help will be sent. Bill shakes his head and wonders when and where the Japanese will be stopped.

Not at Singapore, certainly. And probably not until July '42 at the earliest.

tocaff -> RE: Hunger (6/2/2009 9:21:01 PM)

Well Capt I look to bloody Steve's nose, but he keeps protecting it with more than I'm capable of punching through at the moment.  I just try a slow him a little, conserve my forces when possible and well everybody knows that I'm flat out getting beat up as should happen at this stage of the war.

tocaff -> RE: Hunger (6/3/2009 7:57:38 PM)

January 30, 1942  Pearl Harbor

The DD Benham rests at her mooring awaiting orders.  Her crew alternates between doing the humdrum normalcy of routine upkeep of the ship and shore leave.  More than a few sailors have ended up in the custody of the SP.  It has fallen to Phil to spring these men as he happens to know some well placed people that enable him to work miracles, or so it seems.

Tarpon has nothing to report.

Palawan should reach Pearl tomorrow, if all goes well.  Nothing is assured in these waters though as another IJN sub is attacked by an ASW TF.

On the outskirts of Singapore troops retreat through the defensive lines.  Johore Bahru is attacked by over 117K Japanese troops, loses of 16/1/0.  The defenders number all of 10.5K and lose 103/2/0.  The defensive lines continue to shorten as the Japanese pressure constantly drives the defenders back.

In Washington the news of the attack on Buka surprises nobody.

A convoy arrives in LA to absorb ships there to sweel it's size.  In a couple of days it'll set sail for SF.

My posts will be short for now as construction work on my home disrupts everything and turns will get priority.  Once the workers move inside I'll try to maintain my internet access through our wireless network, but everything will be shifted around. 

tocaff -> RE: Hunger (6/4/2009 6:19:38 PM)

January 31, 1942  Washington DC

Ed and Bill are compiling lists of planes and shipping lost to both sides as they discuss Naga's Phillipino defenders being cut off and running low on supplies.  They've also talked about the Japs taking Buka.  The estimated losses of ships and planes are:

Type                              Japan                                    Allied

CV                                                                               1
CA                                                                               2
CL                                                                               1
DD                                    1                                          2
PG                                                                                2
PC                                     1
PT                                                                                5
SS                                     5                                          7
MSW                                  5                                          5
ML                                                                                 1
AS                                                                                 2
AO                                                                                 4
TK                                     3                                           5
AK                                      4                                          17
AP                                      12                                         1

Aircraft all types                  388                                       456
The Palawan arrives in Pearl Harbor and once everything is secure her skipper is taken to Chinatown in Honolulu by the crew to celebrate.  It'll be a wild night for them.

The Dutch fleet leaves Koepang for Kendari.  The fear of remaining in one place for to long and being discovered is placing a strain on men and ships.

Two more subs are attacked near Pearl and the SS I-1 is sunk.

Hitler has reaffirmed his prophecy that the war will result in the "complete annihiation of the Jews."  The SS Einsatzgruppe A reports a total of 229,052 Jews killed.

tocaff -> RE: Another Month Survived (6/5/2009 11:51:25 PM)

February 1, 1942

In Singapore retreating troops stream in as the Japanese assault on Johore Bahru has taken it.  117.5K Japanese troops have routed the 7.4K defenders from their positions.  The Japanese have lost 371/14/0 and the Commonwealth 476/14/0.  There are many units in Singapore now, but they're at only a fraction of their former strength.  Supplies are low and I believe that the city's defenses will collapse in the very near future.

In the Phillipines Clark is seized by 90K attacking Japanese troops.  The 20K defenders retreat to Manila.  The cost of the day's fighting for both sides is:  Japan 660/15/5 and the Allies 2454/39/1.  Manila is extremely low on supplies and troops will be ordered to Bataan leaving the defenders of the city to screen their continuing retreat.

In China the Japanese troops push the retreating Chinese from the outskirts of Chansha.

The Japanese continue the air attacks on anything that moves. 

SS Cuttlefish is on patrol in the Aluetians.

CA Houston sits at her berth awaiting orders.

Tarpon inches ever closer to Pearl.  Red is getting very itchy to escape Tarpon's confines the second they are there.

Phil awaits the inevitable ring of the phone.  His friend in the SP has been a lifesaver for Benham's crew.  Their skipper has read them the riot act about behavior while on shore leave and Phil has added that he's sick and tired of saving them from themselves.  Both officers are realistic enough to know that men who could die tomorrow will not always act in normal ways.

Bill has had a lazy Sunday listening to the radio and reading a newspaper.  Tomorrow is back to the grind that is the reality of the office.  His stomach is no better despite his following the doctor's orders to the letter. 

All convoys continue on their courses unmolested by the Japanese.  The supplies being moved by the Americans is an astounding amount and now that the Allied shipping has been organized I plan on more frequent, but smaller convoys forming a converyor belt to the inevitable victory that FDR talks about.

On other fronts:

The Red Army has begun an offensive towards Kyazma.

Zhukov has been promoted by Stalin and he now commands the West Theatre (Kalniin, West and Bryansk Fronts).

A puppet government has been formed in Norway by Quisling.

All Uboats adopt a new Enigma cipher and the British won't break it unil much later this year.  The rerouting of convoys to avoid the German subs has lost it's edge for now.

tocaff -> RE: Another Month Survived (6/6/2009 9:29:48 PM)

February 2, 1942

It's Groundhog Day in the US, but few really care if there's to be another 6 weeks of winter or not as the war news is bleak enough and of course has everyone's attention.

Ed and Bill read of Japanese artillery and air bombardments, but there's nothing more than that in any of the reports. Ed smiles and says, "No news is good news. Let's go get some lunch." Bill readily agrees with him and off they go. It's a rare day in the war with almost nothing happening. My esteemed opponent is just giving his tired troops a breather before polishing off my tattered forces in Singapore and the Phillipines.

All ships quietly continue to their various destinations and those already in port remain there.

Elsewhere in Washington the United States Congress appropriates $26.5 billion for the United States Navy. Since June 1940 war costs have exceeded $115 billion.

A fast convoy leaves Alexandria bound for Malta. The Luftwaffe will sink all 3 merchantmen of this convoy before they reach their destination.

tocaff -> RE: Another Month Survived (6/7/2009 9:19:10 PM)

I'd like to start this post with a thanks to those of you who are reading my feeble efforts at entertaining you.  How many of you are reading Steve's AAR too?  I look forward to reading his also once our war is over.  I think it'll be an eye opener and interesting as hell for me.  He's been in Melbourne this weekend spying on me under the guise of taking his wife there to celebrate their anniversary.  Back to the war......

February 3, 1942  Singapore

An assault by a Japanese force numbering 98.2K has been made.  There are 58.2K Commonwealth troops there, but they're tired, hungry and low on everything they need to continue the battle.  The loses of this attack were 1725/40/3 and 1235/56/4, respectively. 

In the Phillipines the Jap troops at Clark, 90K strong push the American and Phillipino troops, who number 12.3K out of the area.  These tattered troops retreat to Manila.  The Japanese suffer loses of 806/14/2 while the Allies lose 1065/17/0.

Samarinda is bombarded by the IJN, followed by Japanese troops landing there.  They take Samarinda without breaking a sweat.

Nothing else of note is going on as convoys continue to move unmolested to their designated ports, warships remain poised in various ports and the sub mining campaign continues. 

Ed gives an envelope to Bill concerning Bill's request for a transfer.  Ed says, "Before you open that I'd like you to reconsider leaving here.  I know what was said, but I'm smart enough to know when I've got somebody on my staff who's good and you are a natural for this job.  I'd appreciate more than I could put into words if you'd reconsider.  Think about it."  Bill replies, "I'll do that" and he retires to his office.  Once he's behind his desk he opens the envelope and reads what amounts to a denial of his transfer request.  He's not terribly disappointed this time around and knows that it'll be a long war and he'll get his chances later.  He walks over to Ed's office, knocks and sticks his head in and says that Ed is a pretty decent CO and that they'll be working together for a while.  He places the letter on Ed's desk and adds, "I'd stay on with you even if it read differently."  They smile at eachother, shake hands and go back to work.

In Russia German Army Group Center counterattacks at Vyazma and encircles several Soviet Divisions.  Upon hearing of this Stalin goes ballistic and his inner circle cringes.

tocaff -> RE: Another Month Survived (6/8/2009 9:13:13 PM)

February 4, 1942 Washington DC

Bill sullenly walks to his wall map of the Pacific and places a pin in Green island which was invaded and taken. Arawe has had Japanese troops land there. He then proceeds to Ed's office where he finds him on the phone. "What? Are you sure about that? Of course that's good news, but until it's something concrete I'll have to have my doubts. Yes of course I'd want to return to sea duty. What? Are you kidding me? No, I have the perfect one in mind for that. Thanks a lot and I owe you one. Thanks again admiral. Say hello you your wife for me. Bye. Come on in Bill and grab a seat. What's going on in our dreary world?" Bill fills him in on the latest comms, all the time wondering about what he's overheard.

At Singapore the Japanese stage another attack with 113K men and lose 658/23/1. The defenders, who number 56.4K suffer 243/7/0. The forts level holds at 6, but the supplies are dwindling rapidly.

Taung Gyi is attacked by the Japanese, 17.8K strong, and they lose 845/27/1. The Allied defenders, 6.3K lose 204/10/0 and the fort level holds at 2.

Allied troops continue to leave Manila for Bataan.

The AVG's appearance in air combat has put a dent in the Japanes onslaught, but on the ground they continue to move like an unstoppable tide. The IJN rules the waves where they go and the Allies remain poised looking for an opening to exploit.

As more and more troops become available I look for a small, message sending target that I can take in this lopsided war. I know that there is little depth to the Japanese at this point of the war, but I'm probably being to careful in weighing the possible gains vs. the possible loses.

In Africa the Afrika Korps takes Derna.

There's nothing to report as air bombings of troops continue and supplies are moved around.

tocaff -> RE: Another Month Survived (6/9/2009 11:10:16 PM)

February 5, 1942  Washington DC

Bill sits in Ed's office practically drooling over the hot mug of coffee that sits on Ed's desk.  Ed smiles at him and asks, "How's that bland diet of yours going?  How your stomach doing?"  Bill answers, "OK with the diet that's boring as all hell. The stomach isn't as bad anymore."  He then adds, "Ed what's going on around here with you?  You seem like a little kid on Christmas morning ever since that phone call yesterday.  What gives?"  Ed says, "You know our big boss, Rear Admiral Leigh Noyes?  Well, I served directly under him a number of years ago and that's how I landed in this slot.  He wanted to keep an eye on me while I got my act together.  To make a long story short the Admiral has talked to some of his scrambled egg pals and I'm in line to skipper one of the new cruisers that'll be launched in the near future.  I'll really miss you when I'm gone so keep on the mend, pass your physical and I'll have my exec.  How's that sound kiddo?"  Needless to say Bill is happy for Ed and overjoyed at his own prospects.  "Now, if you don't mind, let's get back to the task at hand or the Admiral will have our fannies in a sling.  What's going on," Ed continues, "in our war?"

The Japs have landed troops at Aitape and Torokina. 

Arawe has fallen to them.

In the approaches to Columbo the RN has attacked and sunk SS I-156.  The ASW TF resupplies, refuels and leaves for it's next target which has been spotted lurking around Madras.

Singapore is attacked again by 33.6K Japs, who suffer 251/12/6 in loses.  The Commonwealth defenders, 60K lose 1039/19/0.  The fort level holds at 6.

The RAN sails from Townsville looking to hit a Jap supply convoy at Gili Gili.

The USN TF centered on CA Houston sails from Rockhampton for the same destination.

Tarpon draws ever closer to Pearl, having spotted a pod of whales today.  Red is boasting about how he will sign on with another ship and do his part to win the war.

All convoys continue to their destinations without mishap.

There are sightings of 3 IJN subs in the San Francisco area.  This threat will be dealt with before the large convoy that is gathering there sails for Pearl Harbor.

For the purpose of my story I to assign characters to vessels and ignore the real commanders name. 

tocaff -> RE: Here I Come! (6/10/2009 10:46:13 PM)

February 6, 1942

A convoy approaching San Francisco is spotted by SS I-16, but before it can move in to attack the escorts chase her off.

The RAN TF increases speed on it's run to try and catch the Jap convoy at Gili Gili. The USN TF continues to cruise towards the same destination with the intention of surprising any late arriving Japanese shipping.

The Japanese troops have moved into artillery range of Bataan's outer defenses and an artillery duel has commenced. Additional Allied troops are moving to Bataan from Manila.

Aitape has fallen so Bill places another pin in the map. Ed has taken the day off to attend to some private affairs knowing the office is in good hands. He'll see to it that Ed takes some leave shortly as he needs some time off too.

Phil, like the rest of Benham's crew is getting antsy. The skipper's speech hasn't exactly had the desired effect and the crew is still tearing up Chinatown in Honolulu.

HMAS Australia

tocaff -> RE: Here I Come! (6/11/2009 11:49:03 PM)

No daily installment today as we've got a house full of company and just squeezing a turn in is difficult.  They'll be here for a few more days in the middle of the construction.  It's a crazy place here.  Hopefully I can get the post in tomorrow.

tocaff -> RE: Here I Come! (6/12/2009 8:33:01 PM)

February 7, 1942  Washington DC

The reports from Bataan are not good as the Japanese are raining artillery shells down on the defenders who are outnumbered, low on supplies and on short rations. 

Singapore has weathered another Japanese assault, but each time the attackers are stronger 101K and the defenders fewer, 54.8K.  The Japs have lost 348/7/0 and the Allies 1063/3/0. Though the forts have remained at 6 the general feeling is that another attack like this one or stronger will carry the day for the Japanese. It will be a bitter pill for London to swallow. 

A RN ASW TF attacks I-153, driving her down, but scoring no hits as it proceeds to Madras.

The RAN TF should hit the Gili Gili area in less than 24 hours while the USN TF trails it by about 1/2 a day's sailing.  The recon has been very shaky but the attacks will proceed as planned.

In Africa the German offensive has been halted at the Gazala line.

US Marines at Bataan

tocaff -> RE: Here I Come! (6/13/2009 11:44:29 PM)

February 8, 1942 Approaches to Gili Gili

The TF commander aboard the RAN's CA Canberra has been informed that an IJN covering force lies in their path as his force wants to get at the transports. What he doesn't know that in the darkness the Japanese BB Mutsu, 3 CLs and 4 DDs are there. He orders his vessels, 2 CAs, 3 CLs and 6 DDs, to open fire and in the following minutes the gunfire from both sides begin to score hits. The level of confusion is high in the darkness and a lookout aboard CA Australia screams that he sees torpedo wakes approaching the ship. Before anyone can react to this report the cruiser is hit by a fish and all aboard can feel her shudder with the impact. At the same time the ship is bracketed by huge splashes in the water as Mutsu has zeroed in on her. The Allied TF continues on towards the transports and they too launch a torpedo attack. It is believed that as they disengage from the covering IJN TF that this torpedo attack has forced the Japanese to withdraw. The Australian ships are then engaged by 4 DDs that are with the transports. After a brief fight the Aussies depart, not wanting to linger and possibly be hit by aircraft in daylight. The final tally of the battle is:

BB Mutsu hit by 8 shells
CL Katori 4 shell hits
CL Tenryu 1 shell hit and a torpedo hit
CL Tatsuta 1 shell hit and a torpedo hit
DD Shiokaze 4 shell hits
DD Wakatake 1 shell hit
DD Hatsuharu 1 shell hit
DD Nenohi sunk
DD Hatsushima 7 shell hits
1 AP is reported to have suffered 3 shell hits
CA Australia 16 shell hits and a torpedo hit and is sinking
CA Canberra 3 shell hits
CL Leander 2 shell hits
CL Achilles 3 shell hits
CL Perth 2 shell hits
DD Bulmer 5 shell hits
DD Stuart 1 shell hit
DD Voyager 3 shell hits
DD Alden 1 shell hit

The RAN TF retires after the fight with Australia in very grave condition along with a few DDs limping, but expected to get home.

The USN TF centered on Houston now hopes that they will arrive at Gili Gili to find at worst a very weakened cover force or at best none at all.

Bill hands Ed the expected bad news about the fall of Singapore. The Japanese attacked with 118.5K men and lost 2139/41/1 while the defenders numbered 53.7K and lost 92108/316/7, which includes POWs.

The huge convoy is 2 days out of San Francisco and already another is being formed up to follow shortly.


tocaff -> RE: Here I Come Again! (6/14/2009 7:30:17 PM)

February 9, 1942

Gili Gili sees the arrival of the USN TF which proceeds to work over the Japanese ships unloading there and their screening vessels. In this nightime action the IJN TF that put up such a good fight there last night has withdrawn and the hunting is good. By the time the Allied TF withdrws they have done the following:

1 APD sunk
DD Hatsuharu sunk
DD Wakaba sunk
2 APs sunk
4 APs heavily damaged

The CA Houston suffers 2 shell hits as does CL Marblehead while the DD Paul Jones is hit once. The TF of 1 CA, 2 CLs and 7 DDs then makes course for Oz. Captain Riker can be proud of his ship and the TF on this night as it's mission accomplished and all ships are safe and sound.

CDR Wallace on the SS Tarpon is a couple of days out of PH and he takes the time to talk to Damon Gaffney. "Red," he says, "you've got to go to the steamship company offices and let them know who you are and on what ship you served. Tell them exactly what happened to the ship and yourself. I'd think that they owe you your wages so make sure you get them. If I were you I'd catch the first ship Stateside and visit your family before you decide what you're going to do next." Red says, "You're not me and what family I've got I don't want to see. I'll take your advice about visiting the company and I'll ask if they've got a place on a ship for me." CDR Wallace grins and pats Red on the back and says, "GO get 'em tiger. I wish you the best of luck. Bye the way is it true that you've managed to fleece my crew of almost all of their cash in poker and crap games? No, don't answer that as the look on your face tells me." Red leaves and heads off to the mess, for a change.

Torokina has been invaded and taken by Japanese troops.

DD Bulmer is fighting for her life as it's a struggle to make a friendly port. The DD Alden is also having a tough go of it. The rest of the TF is intact and almost home. The CA Australia is scuttled as she was doomed and there was no way to save her in these hostile waters.

In Russia the Soviet North Front has cut all land communication for 90K German troops of the 2nd and 10th Corps at Demyansk.

DD Bulmer

If I ever learn to resize things and do screen saves I'll be able to better serve you readers.

tocaff -> RE: Here I Come Again! (6/15/2009 10:13:20 PM)

February 10, 1942

Ed is drinking a mug of coffee and Bill is reading comms.  "Here's more bad news," he says, "  Taung Gyi was assaulted by 25.1K Japanese troops with loses of 355/17/2.  The Commonwealth defenders, who numbered 8.8K held but forts dropped to 0 and they lost 202/4/0.  Not the kind of news they want to see upstairs at all," he adds.  Ed agrees and adds, "Yesterday and the day before, now those naval actions off of Gili Gili is what we're born for." 

The Bulmer is limping towards the Australian coast only for her lookouts to sight a Japanese TF.  After a brief, lopsided battle the Japanese move off and the Bulmer is no more.  Scant hours later this same force of 4 CAs and 6 DDs find the DD ALden who is promptly sunk.  The IJN has gotten a small taste of revenge for the raid on Gili Gili.

In the harbor of Singapore an IJN PG sinks after running into 3 mines.  I suppose Steve will be sweeping there very soon.

In Honolulu a group of the Tarpon's crew is getting drunk with Red buying from his winnings.  Some of the crew from the Benham are also tying one on and words are exchanged in a less than brotherly fashion about tin cans and sardine cans.  The ensuing fracas resultus in SP having a full brig that night and Phil has decided to let Benham's men stew in that brig for a while in the hopes that the message of the party being over reaches them.

In the Aluetians the SS Cuttlefish is on a lonely and cold patrol.

All convoys proceed as planned and are unmolested.

In San Francisco another Pearl bound convoy is readying for the journey as the last of the supplies and troops are loaded.

DD Alden

tocaff -> RE: Here I Come Again! (6/16/2009 5:10:45 PM)

February 11, 1942

Bill and Ed are relaxing at the end of a day that saw bombings and artillery bombardments with little else of note. The SS Stingray put a torpedo into and AP south of Gasmata. The RAAF had just finished bombing this convoy, but only claimed 1 hit.

Red walks into the steamship company's office in Honolulu after the SP let him go because he's only a 17 year old civilian. He identifies himself and recounts his story of Capillo's sinking, his rescue and now he wants to get his pay. Once all of this is verified Red asks the clerk is the company has any other ships here in need of crew members. The clerk replies, "The skipper of the SS Palawan has informed me that he could use a few new hands. I'll sign you on and you can speak to him tomorrow here in the office and if all is OK you'll be set. I would suggest that you clean yourself up a bit though," he chuckles. Red leaves to buy some new clothes and find a room for the night.

CDR Wallace heads for the SP office to see about the release of members of his crew. He's got a few items that need attention aboard the Tarpon that they'll just love attending to.

LCDR Worthington tells Phil that he should spring Benham's sailors and find them some nice detail, such as paint chipping, since they'll be in Pearl for the next couple of days at least.

The AS Fulton continues being repaired at Pearl, but CDR Sheetz is informed of the probability that they'll sail with the next eastbound convoy for the completion of repairs as the vessel is seaworthy and able to make convoy speeds.

I've decided that PH will be used for immediate repairs and send ship off to the US for their completion. Upgrades will be done in the US also as I fear that Pearl will be filled with damaged vessels soon enough.

In Europe "The Channel Dash" of Scharnhorst, Gneisenau and Prinz Eugen from Brest to Kiel takes place. The British will try and fail to stop this run tomorrow.


tocaff -> RE: Here I Come Again! (6/17/2009 11:53:37 PM)

February 12, 1942 Washington DC

Ed is alone in his office reading comms and spots the reports out of the Phillipines. "Not good," he mumbles to himself, "not good at all." He's looking at 2 sheets of paper and one is worse than the other. Clark was attacked by 37.4K Japanese troops with estimated loses of 260/5/3 while the American and Phillipino defenders, 5.4K, lose 360/13/0. The remaining troops are retreating towards Manila. At Naga the Japanese assault force numbered 45.9K and lost 905/29/2. The 41st and 51st PA Divisions numbered 8.6K and loses were 5769/92/0. With nowhere to retreat to the survivors surrendered.

LCDR Worthington receives orders that the Benham will sail as flagship of a 6 destroyer ASW TF. He will be in command and they will sweep the waters around Pearl Harbor searching for IJN subs that might be on the prowl. He notifies Phil to cancel are shore leave and make the ship ready.

Red enters the steamship company offices and finds the Captain of the Palawan already there. Capt Demesa greets Red and says, "So you're the sole survivor of the Capillo and you want to ship out again already? Don't you have family that you'd like to visit?" Red replies, "Yeah I was lucky and now I want to do my part to beat the SOBs that started this war by doing what I know best. I have no real family, especially since the Capillo went down with all hands." Tears form in Red's eyes and he fights to hold them back, to no avail. "Go ahead and cry," says the master of the Palawan, "we've all got or will have plenty of grieving to do before this mess is over and done with. I'll take you on as a crew member of the Palawan. Bring your sea bag here any time today and the company will see it gets to the ship or you can bring it yourself." Red is told where to find the ship and signs the papers. Then he's on his way to gather his things, buy some more stuff and dump it at the ship. He's looking forward to meeting the men that he'll be living and working with. He hopes to be able to tip a few with them before the ship leaves port.

Houston and her TF will make Brisbane in 2 more days after stopping in Rockhampton for badly needed fuel. They sucked the fuel stocks there dry and need to tap Brisbane for more fuel and supplies. Orders will await them upon their arrival.

The RAN TF will shift to Brisbane as the IJN has reportedly reinforced the PNG area with heavy forces.

All convoys are proceeding to their destinations without interference from the Japanese.

Steve is sitting on a 2:1 VP advantage at present. While this is of no great concern at this point in time I do want to start planning for hitting back at him. I've got 1 CV at Pearl and 3 in San Fran of which I want all of them to upgrade in the next month and a half along with other warships before sending them out to Pearl to do battle. Supplies and forces are being shifted with an eye towards stemming the tide of The Yellow Peril.

tocaff -> RE: Here I Come Again! (6/18/2009 10:41:22 PM)

February 13, 1942

Boac has been occupied.

The Japs have landed at Hollandia. Does anybody see a trend along the northern PNG coast? I do and a sub has been dispatched in the hopes of bagging a transport or 2.

Anchorage is now a level 7 airfield which means that I can base up to 350 planes there. My 4E bombers will be a threat to anything in the area. While the forts level grows engineers will now also build up the port facilities. I still intend to use a northern approach to try and throw Steve off balance.

Benham leads the way of the ASW TF as they head to the NE in the hopes of shepherding in an approaching convoy.

All convoys continue to be unmolested. I think that the IJN has it's hands full being spread over such a vast area.

The British are putting together a large group of ships. Some will be leaving Bombay as soon as escorts arrive.

Red is out drinking and chasing call girls with members of the Palawan's crew. He's a bit of a celebrity given his war experiences. They run into some of Tarpon's crew and the party grows bigger.

The usual bombardments, both by air and gun tube occur and that's it.

Stalin has been informed that LCUs are almost up to full strength and planes are dribbling in to fill the formations that will soon be springing a surprise on the hated Japanese. Soon the orders will be given to start the redeployments.

FDR and Churchill have agreed that the quickest way to bring Japan to her knees is to strangle her economy. To do this the major Allied thrust will be to cut off oil and mineral supplies that enable the war machine. Subs will begin to lurk at choke points and if possible bombers will attack facilities that they can reach that the Japanese have taken. It has been deemed better to reduce the facilities rather than trying to stem the flow of transports, though both will be done.


tocaff -> RE: Here I Come Again! (6/19/2009 11:46:43 PM)

February 14, 1942

Today I suffered from having LCUs ordered to move from Manila to Bataan go to Clark instead. I should say that the following units went from the frying pan into the fire. The 71 PA Div, 26 PS Cav Rgt, 57 PS RCT and the 107 USAABF all suffered for not following my orders. The Japs hit them with 37.6K troops to their 4K and the Japanese lost 119/7/2 while what wasn't killed surrendered to the tune of 5777/12/0 for the Allies. I'm not upset by this because I barely hold Manila and Bataan with starving troops so the loss of them is inevitable anyway.

Meanwhile in Washington DC Ed notes that Taung Gyi was hit by 24.6K Japs with loses of 599/11/0. The Commonwealth troops numbered 8.3K and lost 145/1/0 but the forts are 0 and supplies are dwindling fast. He gets up and puts a pin in Bill's map indicating the fall of Hollandia. The only good news today is that it's Valentine's Day and he spoke to his estranged wife. She seems to be warmer towards him and he'll try to have a dinner with her next week while she's in town.

The Dutch continue to stick pins in the Japanese every chance they get while constantly being pushed back. Today their Martins score 3 bomb hits on a MSW, which sinks, at Balikpapan.

The Benham's TF moves NE on a course to link up with a convoy bound for Pearl. There have been no sub sightings, but you never know.

The Australian ports of Townsville and Rockhampton have been sucked dry of fuel by Allied warships so they are all moving to Brisbane for safety and fuel.

Another large convoy is loading in San Francisco while a smaller one is doing the same in Los Angeles. I hope to sink Hawaii with fuel and supplies so that I can start to build up the supplies substantially at other bases as soon plenty of planes and troops will start arriving from the US.

All convoys are still moving unmolested towards their destinations.

The Soviets have moved into White Russia and are meeting strong resistance from the Germans. They have also started universal labor conscription.

POWs in the Phillipines

tocaff -> RE: Here I Come Again! (6/21/2009 1:18:03 AM)

February 15, 1942  Washington DC

Bill hands Ed a stack of comms and says, "More of the same I'm afraid.  The Japs have landed troops at Woodlark Island.  Balikpapan has fallen to a Jap force 10.6K stong, loses of 274/7/0 while the Dutch forces numbered 1.8K, lost 126/8/0.  The survivors are in retreat trying to get to Banjarmasin.  Taung Gyi was attacked again by 23.6K Japs, who lost 1197/23/2.  Commonwealth troops numbering 8.1K lost 156/4/0."  Ed proceeds to pick up the phone to get a clerk to deliver the appropriate outgoing papers to the proper places.  He then tells Bill that he's going to see his wife when she arrives in DC and shows him a picture of her.

Dutch PTs near Pinrang were attacked by Zeros and 2 of the 3 suffered minor damage.  This will effectively remove this squadron from offensive ops.

The AK Escalante is preparing to depart PM as she's in the final stages of unloading.

Benham should rendevous with the convoy in 2 days.

The IJN's KB is out there somewhere, but I don't have much of an idea.

tocaff -> RE: Here I Come Again! (6/22/2009 1:12:08 AM)

February 16, 1942  East of Banjarmasin

The Dutch patrol planes have spotted an IJN TF and they launch an all out effort.  Though there really aren't that many planes in flyable condition a decent sized raid is mustered.  Once spotted by the strike force the torpedo planes drop to their attack altitude and the level bombers start to drop their bombs on the twisting and turning Japanese force.  Somebody makes mention of the fact that they should take their time and mark their targets well as there is no CAP around.  This lack of air cover proves to be costly as CA Suzuya is struck by 2 bombs and the CA Kumano is reported to have been hit by no less than 3 torpedos.  As the planes depart Kumano is on fire and heavily damaged.

The AK Escalante has delivered her cargo of supplies to PM and is sailing for Brisbane when a lookout shouts that planes are approaching from the east.  The cargo ship is alone and an easy target for Vals and Kates.  She is quickly sent to a watery grave and now the Allies know where the KB is hunting.  Because of Escalante being able to get out a SOS stating her position and the situation the Dutch TF is diverted to Derby thus saving them from a certain lopsided encounter with the KB.

Bill sticks his head into Ed's office and tells him that the Japs launched a recon in force at Taung Gyi of about 1.4K troops and they lost 20/0/0 while the Commonwealth defenders, 7.9K strong, suffered no casualties.  They have bought themselves another day they but are still vastly outnumbered and virtually surrounded.  While the terrain helps the defenders it also inhibits their ability to move as much as it does to the Japanese.  "Woodlark was captured and the Japs have landed at Siador." Bill adds.  Ed grunts and returns to reading about the BBs that have left Pearl on a mission to bombard Wake Island.  The old girls carry quite a wallop, but are vulnerable to air attack because of their relatively slow speed.  I'll be good to bloody the Japs a bit, he thinks to himself.

The Germans have order their Uboats to attack British and American ships off of the US east coast and they shell oil storage facilities in Aruba and Curacao.

tocaff -> RE: Here I Come Again! (6/22/2009 8:26:16 PM)

February 17, 1942

Dutch PTs are straffed by Zeros near Banjarmasin, with 2 of the 3 boats suffering light damage.

The AP Barnett leaves San Francisco and after covering less than 60 miles an IJN sub puts a torpedo into her. She immediately heads back to SF with her 2 DD escorts in tow.

The only base of mention still held by the Allies in the Phillipines is Bataan. Supplies there are running low and the troops are outnumbered and outgunned.

The Dutch TF is a few days out of Derby and should find safety there for a short time. HQ is pressing for them to be sent to join the British to protect India, but the Aussies and Americans would like to see them assigned to the Oz, NZ area instead.

Benham's TF shadows the convoy and so far so good. Another ASW TF has been dispatched from Pearl to help insure the convoy's safe arrival.

Japanese troops landing on Corregidor.

tocaff -> RE: Here I Come Again! (6/23/2009 6:23:36 PM)

February 18, 1942

The Dutch planes find the CA Suzuya and hit her with another bomb. Sadly these 250 pound bombs only scratch the paint. The Jap TF has a CAP consisting of 9 Zeros this time around and they down 6 Dutch aircraft and damage another 4.

Near Pamakasan Zeros attack 3 Dutch PTs. I'm having an awful time with my PTs as I try to shift them around, but Steve is finding and hitting them.

Bill walks into Ed's office, flops into a chair and literally drops a stack of comms on the desk. "Today is bad, very bad," he says. "Manila was successfully assaulted by Japanese troops numbering 116.6K strong against 17.8K Allied defenders. Japanese loses are estimated at 1665/41/2 while ours were 26.9K/110/0. I pity those poor SOBs who were captured as these damned reports are telling tales of cruelty that is hard to imagine. There's going to be hell to pay for this. Oh yeah, I almost forgot the the Japs took Siador too." Bill just stares down at his shoes and has a helpless feeling. Ed say, "Perk up Bill because once we get our feet under us the Japs are going to be in for a world of hurt." This leaves the men at Bataan alone to face the might of the Japanese with no hope. It'll be death or capture for almost all of them, though a few will escape into the jungles and begin to wage an unconventional war against the Japanese.

USN and RAN warships are concentrating in Brisbane.

A convoy is about 2 days from Pearl and a second ASW TF has joined it. Benham searches tirelessly for threats in the air, on the surface and under it but mercifully nothing has happened other than the occasional false alarm from a lookout with tired eyes.

Another convoy is steadily approaching Anchorage with supplies and fuel. The Barnett being torpedoed yesterday hurt as she was carrying men to this destination who would have greatly expanded the air capacity there.

Other convoys continue on their ways with nothing impeding their journeys.

Gens MacArthur and Wainright

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