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Ensign T. Toshio goes to War

 
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Ensign T. Toshio goes to War - 10/1/2007 11:36:23 PM   
Snip

 

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This is the story of IJN Ensign Taketo Toshio, told by himself in letters home or recorded in his diary. At least for the most part. The editor (errrm.. me) may need to explain some of the larger issues by foot notes, but it is still the story of a young IJN Officer in training.

Well, at least when things get started.

The adventures of Toshio San are based on a PBM between me and “wolffpack”. We are using CHS AB extended map version 6.3, Scenario 157, version 2.08c. Latest patch for WitP.

Just to get the clerking job out of the way - Here are our current house rules:

Sub Doctrines = off
FOW = on
Allied damage control = on
Hist 1st turn = no
PDU = on
Vary Setup = off
Dec 7 surprise = on
Reinforcements = historical
Auto sub ops = off
Expand at start = off
Automatic upgrades = off
Accept replacements = off
Turn cycle = 1

1. The allied player on turn 1 will not enter ANY orders to simulate the Japanese achieving total surprise. The two exceptions to this rule are;
a. New orders can be given to the CV task forces at sea.
b. The Chinese can be given orders (as they are already at war vs. Japan).
However, they cannot be ordered to move towards Burma or given a target outside China till turn 2.
Basically the Japanese players sends their opening turn, the allied player loads it up, moves the CVs and Chinese and sends it straight back.
2. For the Japanese player, all first turn landings need to be in range of long range cap of Jap fighters (land based), for example: Java, Sumatra, Timor, and Sulawesi are NOT OK. Philippines, Borneo etc. are OK. Szenario defined (historic) landings outside this limit are fine. But not mandatory.
3. Only one Japanese port attack on turn 1 - except KB going for PH - optional.
4. Air or ground units belonging to the Kwangtung, China, or India commands may not leave their areas unless PP's are spent to change their command. China command (Japanese and Allied allready in China units are free to move "east"). A few Kwantung units are in china command at the start. Those few (4 mongolian divs) may be used as if part of china command. Allied China units must pay PPs going outside china to the north, west or south. Except the units in or assigned to Burma Command at the start.
5. The Japanese are not allowed to enter the Panama and Aden passages. In addition no Japanese units allowed within 4 hexes of the exits from the Aden and Panama passages.
6. No Allied 4 engined bombers allowed on Naval Attack below 10000 ft
7. No 2 engine Bomber units allowed to upgrade to 4 engine bombers as the allies. Skip bombing with 2E Bombers is not allowed before January 43 (or a historic date. Bismark Sea Battle)
8. PT Boats: PT boats can only be in a TF by themselves. Max PT TF 8. Max number of PTs in one hex 16. PTs out of fuel need to reach a port or need to refuel from a TF within two days - or get scuttled.
9. No more than 6 ships in an ASW TF.
10. Limit of two AA units per hex once they leave their start base. No mass flak bases
11. Stacking limit of 50 planes per airfield level. (not counting float planes/amphibs)
12. No submarine Invasions - unless specialized landing forces are carried - raiders etc.
13. Amphibious invasions must be at a dot or base. No empty coast hexes can be landed on.
14. Parachute invasions must be at a dot or base. No empty hexes can be landed on.
15. Japanese subs cannot change/upgrade their scout planes.
16. No "lingering" of subs in enemy ports from size three upwards.
17. Deliberate para drops on enemy units behind the lines are not allowed.
18. Deliberate naval "suicide" attacks of small units (DDs etc) on enemy capital ship formations are not allowed - exception PTs. Some allied players like this, knowing the respawn rules are working in their favour. However, this may happen at times.
19. Japanse "light" air units (DBs etc) may not be upgraded beyond "Lilies" or their upgrades.
20. No Corsairs on aliied CVs of any description - except for ferrying - till 1/44.
21. Mine laying by AC is restricted to night operations.
22. Russia is neutral till activated (attack, time, points in kwantung). Allied units entering russian border will be "interned". Japanese player will "activate" Russia at least 1 month prior to invasion.
23. Capital ships (Light Cruisers onward) cannot replenish from ports smaller than three. DDs/DMS/DML etc not from smaller than 2. Unless support ships (AO/AE) and similar are in the same port.
24. LCU stacking rules:
To prevent the mammoth stack of 500,000 men moving around Asia and/or 100,000 man garrisons on Wake Island…
Single Island hex (including Okinawa).
10,000 men per airfield and port level. 5,000 per fort level.
Atolls.
Halved (5,000 men per AF and Port, 2,500 per fort).
All others (non base, continental, large islands). 200,000 men per hex.

If a hex is contested, then maybe 50% more allowed until 30 days after last day hex is contested. (Not super rigid here, this will just take some common sense to apply). This will allow the attacker to bring more troops and the defender to bring in some reinforcements. At the same time, it puts a premium on doing the logical military thing and finding the weak spots to land at, isolating targets, bombing, ensuring proper support, etc.

Note - stacking numbers are not based on the SRS but the actual size of the facility, allowing you to build up troops if you invest in building up a large base over its SRS.

The reduced stacking rule was extended to all bases in the Pacific (except Hawai and the island chain from Alaska to Japan) and the Bases on New Guinea, Bismarks, Solomon chains etc. in the half strenght rule. This quite puts a high premium on good logistics and mid/long term planning.

After all this “bumff”, let me introduce Ens. Taketo Toshio to you.
Taketo graduated from Etajima Naval Academy Class 70 on 15/11/1941. His marks placed him somewhere in the middle. Not the least, because he showed a rather pronounced interest in naval aviation issues, which was not all that popular with his tutors at the time.
He experienced his most serious set back in his nascent career as an officer in training, when his application for the IJN flight training school at Kasumigaura was turned down. Mostly because of bad eye sight – a common issue with young Japanese Officers, according to US military intelligence.
Anyway, his keen interest in aviation was taken into consideration by the authorities in charge, and he was ordered to report aboard CVE Taiyo after a very short leave – to dispel the Sake fumes from the graduation festivities and some such .
Well, to be honest, in the heat of many pressing issues, nobody really cared about the needs of tiny CVE , freshly converted from a commercial liner, and getting into anyones way by its commissioning needs. It did not take much cutting of red tape to dispel a run of the mill Ensign into a “bottom” very low on the list and hardly ready for war – or lets say hostilities.

CVE Taiyo, a conversion from KASUGA MARU, entered the Sasebo Dock for conversion on May 1st 1941 and left it on Sept. 2nd 41 as a freshly hatched CVE. Commisioned on Sept. 10th, it left Sasebo for Takao on a shake down cruise with a skeleton crew. On return to Sasebo on Nov. 10th a number of hasty fixes got applied.

CVE Taiyo was ordered to proceed to sea at Nov. 28th any gate, to perform some sort of vital task.
Ens Toshio is ordered to join ship on Nov. 27. (pretty brisk work by the pen pushers, considering).

Lets hear him out:

Dear Mom, Dear Dad,

just a few notes in a hurry. I managed to arrive in time – despite the congested roads and rail ways – just an hour after the new Captain Hamsaki took over. There was little time to settle in. The whole ship is a bee heave – everyone moving at the double. Even though the crew is made up of a few seasoned warrant officers, very few experienced leading hands even less carrier trained officers, and while most of the hands are more or less fresh from the barracks, things are slowly taking shape. A single “shake down” cruise did help some, though. The ship – being new – is still regarded as a bit “clunky” but workable. At least according to scuttle but.
There is at least one familiar face aboard: Ens. Hishitami Kiyo, we got along rather well at the academy.
Summons to the XO at 1300. I am assigned to the Navigation Department under Lt. Mitsuru Goga, while Hishitami is attached to the wireless/coding division. We are in the same watch and share a berth. Navigation is not that exciting, but it is a start.

Taiyo is a somewhat curious ship. Rated as a CVE, she has room for 30 AC. That puts her in the same Class as the CVLs. But Taiyo lacks the speed, endurance, armor and fire power of the CVLs.

While I am writing, a first group of our permanent AC compliment is landing, A1/China Chutai commanded by LCDR Takagi More will arrive tomorrow A2/Omura Daitai for transfer to Palau.

We are supposed to join up with CarDiv 4 under RADM Nabeta at Palau.

Hope to write soon
Your loving son.

p.s. Many thanks to you, my sisters and all who worked on this marvelous belt of “1000 stiches”. Looks like I can use any “charm” any gate according to the old hands tales and scuttle but - a little creepy indeed.
Post #: 1
RE: Ensign T. Toshio goes to War - 10/2/2007 8:26:39 PM   
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Posts: 27
Joined: 9/24/2007
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Well,

just to get the story started.

An excerpt from Ensign T. Toshios Diary.

Dec. 1st 1941:

We are at sea. Steaming towards Palau at better than cruise speed.
The Old Man gave use some pep talk – mostly about our ship and what he expects of us – to make it a first class fighting ship. The old hands shrug it off, the new ones listen closely.
According to the last newspapers we got, things are getting tense with the US. Anyway, what we get into our radios is mostly patriotic music and commentaries. Or increasingly so.
Whatever, soon as we cleared Sasebo, the Cpt. ordered exercises. We have been going from action stations to abandon ship, or anything in between. No pause. No breather.
We are told, we are on a war footing – for the good of the ship, our own, the Navy and the Tenno – forgot the real order of things.
Looks like I get along with my boss main well.


Dec. 5th.
We are still on exercises of all kind – dusk to dawn and beyond. The ship and its crew is getting into full stride.

Dec. 6th
We are one days sailing away from Palau. Tidying up the ship and preparing to transship the additional Kates to Palau AF.

Hishitami tells me at supper that the W/T is picking up a constant flow of mysterious messages from IJN and IJA High Command stations. He is sure something unusual is going on.
One of the messages was addressed to our ship.

Shortly after the Old Man informs us of what he learned: Taiyo will indeed join up with CVE Hosho, CS Mizuho, CL Oi, and six DDs (Ariake, Yugure, Wakaba, Umikaze, Hatsuharu, Nenohi). CarDiv 4 (or TF 108) will operate under the jurisdiction of 3rd Fleet (VADM Takahashi) with Palau as its base.
We are to receive a permanent allotment of fighters to flesh out our air group: F3/Tainan Chutai and F3/3rd Chutai are both equipped with A6M2 Fighters and are supposed to arrive at Palau by transport the same day we do. LCDR Takagi, CO of our Kate Chutai will be the senior officer of our air group.

CarDiv4 is supposed to leave port for sea exercises on the 9th as the latest. There will be no shore leave this time.

Looks like this schedule is going to keep every man jack busy as a bee. On the other hand, the arrival of the A6Ms does indicate, Taiyo is no longer last in line for almost everything.
And of course about 50 A/C on the carriers and some 20 more float planes from the CS makes for a quite impressive show of force.

(in reply to Snip)
Post #: 2
RE: Ensign T. Toshio goes to War - 10/2/2007 10:27:45 PM   
Capt. Harlock


Posts: 4910
Joined: 9/15/2001
From: Los Angeles
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Snip

1. The allied player on turn 1 will not enter ANY orders to simulate the Japanese achieving total surprise. The two exceptions to this rule are;
a. New orders can be given to the CV task forces at sea.
b. The Chinese can be given orders (as they are already at war vs. Japan).
However, they cannot be ordered to move towards Burma or given a target outside China till turn 2.
Basically the Japanese players sends their opening turn, the allied player loads it up, moves the CVs and Chinese and sends it straight back.



Not really accurate: British intelligence was aware when the troop transports sailed for the Malaysian peninsula. IMHO it would be legitimate to give orders to the British and Indian units.

Wolffpack seems to make a good opponent for those of a literary turn of mind!


_____________________________

Civil war? What does that mean? Is there any foreign war? Isn't every war fought between men, between brothers?

--Victor Hugo

(in reply to Snip)
Post #: 3
RE: Ensign T. Toshio goes to War - 10/2/2007 11:24:42 PM   
Snip

 

Posts: 27
Joined: 9/24/2007
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I am sorry mate,

but what the Brits knew - or regarded as unique and usefull is one thing. What they choose to act on is another story.
If you think our rules in this game are to much in favour of the Japs - please feel free to enlighten me and the audience.

From my end, the Japs did manage to achieve a rather decent amount of surprise in almost all of their doings for several reasons:
a) They did what any reasonable military commander would have done. Some allied commanders got a little to "wise" for their own good.
b) The Japs followed trough. Big surprise.
c) The Japs got lucky in some ops. Kutching etc.
d) Allied commanders beat themselves
e) The Jap attack - and the way it is conducted is pretty well documented. I really care to learn, how you would care to factor in a kind of surprise factor in house rules ? In WitP?

Let me know.

Cheers


(in reply to Capt. Harlock)
Post #: 4
RE: Ensign T. Toshio goes to War - 10/3/2007 10:35:17 PM   
Capt. Harlock


Posts: 4910
Joined: 9/15/2001
From: Los Angeles
Status: offline
quote:

If you think our rules in this game are to much in favour of the Japs - please feel free to enlighten me and the audience.


c) The Japs got lucky in some ops. Kutching etc.
d) Allied commanders beat themselves

e) The Jap attack - and the way it is conducted is pretty well documented. I really care to learn, how you would care to factor in a kind of surprise factor in house rules ? In WitP?


For reasons c & d, I wouldn't factor in surprise at all except at Pearl Harbor. In the great majority of the AAR's I've read, a competent Japanese player can take Singapore ahead of the historical date, and the Philippines significantly ahead of historical. Why institute a rule that's not needed?

_____________________________

Civil war? What does that mean? Is there any foreign war? Isn't every war fought between men, between brothers?

--Victor Hugo

(in reply to Snip)
Post #: 5
RE: Ensign T. Toshio goes to War - 10/4/2007 12:54:00 AM   
Barb


Posts: 2178
Joined: 2/27/2007
From: Bratislava, Slovakia
Status: offline
Few notes to better autenticity. As a japanese sailor Toshio should use japanese names:
quote:


...additional Kates to...

For the Japs it was Type 97 Carrier Attack Bomber or B5N. Kate was an allied nickname

quote:


... Japanese carrier division...

Koku Sentai is Japanese translation

quote:


...A6M Fighters...

Type 0 Carrier Fighter, or Japanese nicknames Rei-sen or Zero-sen

_____________________________

[img]https://drive.google.com/open?id=0BzOZPXg_qJ22TG43UmJ5UjRsb3c[/img]

(in reply to Snip)
Post #: 6
RE: Ensign T. Toshio goes to War - 10/11/2007 9:55:39 PM   
Snip

 

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Joined: 9/24/2007
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Thx for your advise Gentlemen !
The story continues

Dec 7th 1941:

The ship, approaching Palau went to action stations at 4 am. Presumably to prepare the launching of our “passengers” and their transfer to Peleliu AF at the earliest possible time.
However, while on duty, Lt. Goga took me aside and asked me to find two maps: one of the entire Pacific and adjacent areas including the Indik and Australia and another covering the seas south and west of Palau. He advised me to be prepared to attend to a meeting with the Captain with him and all departmental/divisional officers shortly after the Old Man had returned from the Flag.

Lt. Goga informed me, that my classmate Ens. Hishitami Kiyo would be instructed to very closely liaison with us and to transfer any available information from the W/T department immediately.
Both of us would support the X.O. in maintaining the ships diary from now on.
Looks like I am granted a grand stand view of all things to come !

Anyway, the ship turned into the wind and went to full speed ahead to help the B5N (Kate) Daitai to take off from our congested deck without incident on their transfer to Peleliu AF. After this, we steamed to Malakal Harbor for replenishment and to receive our fighter complement.
While approaching the port, Taiyo picked up a pilot with sealed orders. As I learned later in the day, the ship was ordered to anchor outside the inner harbor, replenish from barges and oilers and then move on to the moles to bring the still crated fighters aboard next day, which had just arrived by transports from Formosa.
When the Captain returned from the Flag, he informed the ships company that the Empire of Japan was at war with the US, the British Empire including Australia and New Zealand and the Dutch or anyone else venturing to stand in the way of Japans plans for that matter.
He cited an Imperial Order:

We, by grace of heaven, Emperor of Japan, seated on the throne of a line unbroken for ages eternal, enjoin upon ye, our loyal and brave subjects:
We hereby declare war on the United States of America and the British Empire. The men and officers of our Army and Navy shall do their utmost in prosecuting the war, our public servants of various departments shall perform faithfully and diligently their appointed tasks, and all other subjects of ours shall pursue their respective duties; the entire nation with a united will shall mobilize their total strength so that nothing will miscarry in the attainment of our war aims.
To insure the stability of East Asia and to contribute to world peace is the far-sighted policy which was formulated by our great Illustrious Imperial Grandsire and Our Great Imperial Sire succeeding him, and which we lay constantly to heart.
To cultivate friendship among nations and to enjoy prosperity in common with all nations have always been the guiding principles of our Empire's foreign policy. It has been truly unavoidable and far from our wishes that our Empire has now been brought to cross swords with the United States and Great Britain.
More than four years have passed since China, failing to comprehend the true intentions of our Empire, and recklessly courting trouble, disturbed the peace of East Asia and compelled our Empire to take up arms. Although there has been reestablished the National Government of China, with which Japan has effected neighborly intercourse and cooperation, the regime which has survived at Chungking, relying upon United States and British protection, still continues its fratricidal opposition.
Eager for the realization of their inordinate ambition to dominate the Orient, both the United States and Britain, giving support to the Chungking regime, have aggravated the disturbances in East Asia. Moreover, these two powers, inducing other countries to follow suit, increased military preparations on all sides of our Empire to challenge us. They have obstructed by every means possible our peaceful commerce, and finally resorted to a direct severance of economic relations, menacing gravely the existence of our Empire.
Patiently have we waited and long have we endured, in the hope that our Government might retrieve the situation in peace, but our adversaries, showing not the least spirit of conciliation, have unduly delayed a settlement and, in the meantime, they have intensified the economic and political pressure to compel thereby our Empire to submission.
This trend of affairs would, if left unchecked, not only nullify our Empire's efforts of many years for the sake of the stabilization of East Asia, but also would endanger the very existence of our nation. The situation being such as it is, our Empire for its existence and self-defense has no other recourse but to appeal to arms and to crush every obstacle in its path.
The hallowed spirits of our Imperial ancestors guarding us from above, we rely upon the loyalty and courage of our subjects in our confident expectation that the task bequeathed by our forefathers will be carried forward, and that the sources of evil will be speedily eradicated and an enduring peace immutably established in East Asia, preserving thereby the glory of our Empire.

Shortly after, all officers got a summons to attend the Captain – and this time me and Hishitami did attend as well. Some of the Officers looked a little queer when we “lowlies” entered the Captains cabins for the occasion, but the Captain explained the purpose of our presence to them in quite clear terms: We would have the essential task to gather and plot all relevant information pertaining to our ships and TF for the benefit of the ship. The better we are informed, the more helpful our work might be.

In essence, Taiyo as a part of CarDiv4 would work from Palau for the time being, supporting operations in the Zulu Sea and North of Australia around Sulawesi, the Moluckas and probably Timor.

For the time being a TF of Fleet Carriers (Kaga/Akagi) is operating in the vicinity of Tarakan to support a landing there and at Jolo Island while covering ops against Brunei/Miri as well.
To the North two CVLs supported by two BBs and Destroyers are deployed to both cover landings at Luzon (Legaspi) and to stop enemy shipping in the area.

3rd Fleet, in cooperation with the Armies Southern Area HQ, has alloted shipping and troops for landings at Manado, Namlea and Amboina. The most important ops is at Namlea with a view to establish a forward base to both recon and interdict enemy ops in the area.
The landings at Manado and Amboina will be conducted by Naval Landing forces. These are expected to take the bases by surprise or at least tie down the garrisons and inhibit both reinforcements or evacuations. The Army is sending 4th Inf Division from Shanghai to support the operations in the area, if the Naval forces should prove insufficient.
21st Inf Division at Tientsin is held in reserve.

The invasion at Namlea (21st NLF) will use a TF of CLs of Fast Transports, the invasion force for Manado will embark on transports. The Manado Force will have four BBs in close support. Both landings will have fuel and supply ships following a day or two behind the invasion forces. Both invasion forces are slated to leave Palau tomorrow. CarDiv 4 will follow them immediately to provide air cover.


During the day the following general picture transpired:

Large scale landings occurred at Singora (unopposed) and Kota Bharu, our troops move through Siam.
A smaller landing operation is under way at Brunei.
Paratroopers have taken Laoag, Naga and Legaspi, while amphibious landings are under way at Vigan, Aparri and Batan Island.
Light naval forces – supported by air attacks - are engaging enemy shipping in the South China Sea vigerously.
An air attack on Clark Field was very successful, while an attack on Manila Harbor was less so.
The carriers near Tarakan have engaged an enemy Destroyer squadron with some success.
Carrier Planes of the CVL TF East of Mindano have attacked enemy ships with success.

Guam is invaded as well as Wake Island. The latter movement being supported by CVs and a cruiser TF.

18 enemy ships – including CL Marblehead and two DDs – are reported sunk, while 47 enemy aircraft are considered destroyed.

p.s.: Of course some of the ops of Taiyo described as taking place at the 7th will take place on the 8th in the game. Some license being taken for the sake of the story line.




Attachment (1)

(in reply to Barb)
Post #: 7
RE: Ensign T. Toshio goes to War - 10/16/2007 11:32:11 PM   
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Dec, 8th 1941

Our ship – and the task force – stayed in Malakal Harbor (Palau) all day. The ships company was busy taking supplies, fuel and - most important – our fighter complement aboard. Taking on the fighters took all day, since those arrived crated at the docks, had to be put on lighters and barges and then aboard from these vessels. It may take some time to erect them and put them on operations.

The whole port is a bee-heave. Transports are readying for the invasion of Manado, the BBs are preparing to cover the landing. In the middle of all this, a division of light cruisers threaded its way out of port, heading for Namlea to deploy a forward force on the island. (1)

The tactical picture in our area evolved like this:

The enemy has a large number of transports and small war ships in our area. Besides the Destroyer Division attacked south of Tarakan the day before, it is known that at least one CL, one CA and 4 to 6 DDs are stationed in Manila and the Mindanao area.
The priorities for our warships are clear:
Protect our invasion forces and support any landings.
Attack and destroy enemy war ships
Take, sink or damage any allied transport shipping.
In this order.

Dispositions for today:
35th Brigade is held as floating reserve aboard transports to the north of Palawan (a). In case of need, the invasions at Brunei or Tarakan may call this force in to assist them.
Paratroopers will attack Jolo Island, Miri and Sandakan (b)
An invasion force for Tarakan will be in a holding position SW of Jolo Island, together with the landing forces for Jolo (c). The Fleet Carriers south of Tarakan will move to their position to protect them. Two light Cruisers are in close support.

The CVL TF to the east of Luzon/Mindanao will hold its position, protecting the Luzon landings in the south (d). The two BBs are supposed to bombard Cagayan to impede the use of the airfield there (e).

A forward echelon of 4th Div. from Shanghai is close to Palau (f). It will act as a reserve for the invasions at Manado and Amboina in case of unsuspected strong resistance.
The reminder of 4th Div. is following in separate transports rather close behind.

Four subs have arrived to cover the narrows between Borneo and Sulawezi (g)

During the day, numerous transmissions from our air and naval forces have been intercepted of attacks on enemy shipping in the south China sea and adjacent areas.

Reports from our search and recon planes indicate a “fanning out” pattern of movements of enemy ships from Manila and Mindanao area.




Attachment (1)

(in reply to Snip)
Post #: 8
RE: Ensign T. Toshio goes to War - 10/18/2007 9:37:37 PM   
Snip

 

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Joined: 9/24/2007
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Dec. 9Th 1942

Our TF is going to leave Palau during the day. We are ordered to sail West towards Manado ahead of the landing forces going to this base, even though most of our fighters are still not ready for combat.

Besides protecting those forces, the TF is supposed to intercept any enemy ships headed south for Australia and to interpose between the approaches to Manado and any threads coming up from the south west..

The situation evolved like this:
Paratroopers secured Miri, Sandakan and Jolo Island, while the amphibious landing force at Brunei succeeded in taking the area before the retreating enemy could damage the oil installations there.

Due to bad weather, the fleet CVs east of Tarakan where unable to launch any successful air strikes against ships in the area. However, this TF is now in close support of the Tarakan landing force.
A number of enemy ships made it past the carriers probably into safety heading for Balikpapan, even though one of our subs in the narrows between Borneo and Sulawesi scored.

During the night a single enemy CL (Boise) (1) managed to attack the Jolo reinforcement ships, but was driven away by CL Kashii and CL Isuzu. Both CLs took some hits but are able to continue operations. The enemy ship was damaged during the engagement as well.

Two BBs bombarded Cagayan (2) inflicting substantial damage. However, the enemy had evacuated the AF there already.

The CVL TF east of Samar managed to send off a single strike against enemy ships in the area, causing some damage. The CVLs will remain in this position for the time being

Palau has now two long range torpedo bomber datais in readiness.

Reinforcements are unloading at Jolo and aircraft are moving to the new base (Army Ki-30 dive bombers (Ann) and Navy B5N torpedo bombers (Kate).
At the same time Army KI-27 (Nate) fighters and KI-21 Bombers (Sally) plus a long range torpedo bomber Datai have relocated to Brunei.

The CLs heading for Namlea (3) have not been detected by the enemy yet.

Late in the day, we got notified that CA Ashigara (Chokai Class) has been released from the Aparri landing force to join up with our TF after replenishment at Palau.

On the grand scale, our troops managed to take Kotha Baru, Guam, Tarawa, Vigan and Aparri.
30 enemy ships are reported sunk, for no loss on our side.

A TF of four CAs has been released from the Kotha Baru covering force and is heading for Brunei.





Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Snip -- 10/18/2007 9:41:55 PM >

(in reply to Snip)
Post #: 9
RE: Ensign T. Toshio goes to War - 10/22/2007 10:07:10 PM   
Snip

 

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Dec. 10th, 1942

CarDiv4 has sailed from Palau due West at noon Dec 9th. We are under strict orders to observe radio silence – except for essential sighting reports from our search planes. The Admiral keeps a very watchful eye on his new command, issuing flag and optical signals concerning station keeping, flight schedules, course and rate of sailing. The weather was not very good during the morning but started to clear in the afternoon.
So far we have not been detected by the enemy – which is a good thing, since we have only three operational fighters aboard. Looks like our service chaps have a hell of a time erecting the new fighters. Neither the old man, nor the CAG looked very happy today.

A long signal from 3rd Fleet (Palau) summarized the events and intel of the day as follows:
No enemy activity has been detected to the South and SW of our assumed course.
3rd. Fleet expects very light enemy air coverage in our area. This is derived from:
a) Both our TF nor the CLs heading for Namlea are detected yet.
b) Only three Martin bombers attacked the invasion force heading for Tarakan.
c) The reinforcements for Jolo Isl. unloaded unmolested.
d) Our aircraft in the area did not encounter any enemy fighters – except at Tarakan.
e) Vigorous air attacks targeted at our ships in the Malaya area – including 4E heavies – indicates a concentration of enemy air assets in this area.

Therefore, CarDiv4 is to proceed as ordered.

At least four enemy convoys heading southeast in our direction are reported.
At the same time, enemy ships are heading east from the Philippines and along the northern shore of Borneo towards Singapore.

The whereabouts of the enemy CL (Boise), CA (Houston) and the DDs from Manila is unknown.

The invasion forces for Tarakan are on their way and the forces for Manado have sailed from Palau.

During the day, we received or intercepted reports on air attacks on Tarakan by both carrier AC and land based bombers (presumably Brunei based).
Bombers from Jolo, Luzon, Palau and the CVLs in the north attacked enemy ships around Mindanao and in the Zulu sea with quite some success.



Grand picture: Makin and Tuguegarao (Pi) are secured. The latter by Paratroopers. The invasion forces for Luzon are pretty much unmolested by enemy activity.
A Sub heading for Legaspi was detected, attacked and damaged by our screening forces, but is believed to have attacked a CL in port nevertheless ( unsuccessful however).
Despite heavy air attacks, the landings in the Malaya area proceed as planned.




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RE: Ensign T. Toshio goes to War - 10/25/2007 10:19:14 PM   
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Dec. 11th, 1942

Today our aircraft have encountered the enemy for the first time – and they drew their first blood !
The Namlea TF has delivered the troops. The landing was unopposed.
A DD Flotilla released from the Legaspi landings encountered a Transport East of Samar Isl. and sank it during the night

Search planes launched by CS Mizuho, Palau and the CL TF at first light soon revealed the positions of enemy ships to the North West, South West and South of our course.

We launched two strikes in the morning: One encountered a smallish transport, which was hit by two torpedoes, the second strike attacked two large enemy tankers without scoring a hit. Two bombers and Air Crews from our Carrier where lost in this engagement. One by a direct AA hit, the other by battle damage sustained – probably puncturing the tanks – making it impossible for the crew to make it back. Sad news – indeed.

Anyway – it was a very hectic day, both for me and for Hishitami and his Radio/Coder Crew. Message after message was received, needed deciphering and was relayed to me for plotting purposes. No time to go to the mess ... Too many contact reports for our own sector coming in.

As far as we can make out, the Tarakan force has hit the beaches – despite at least two air attacks.
Tarakan was attacked by our land based bombers from Brunei during the day.
Both the bombers from the CVs in the north as the bombers from Jolo Isl. attacked enemy ships in their sector repeatedly and with success. The CVLs in the North met with poor weather.

From what we can make out, none of our ships in our sector has been molested by enemy air during the day. This confirms 3rd Fleet intelligence on enemy air dispositions. The enemy ships try to make for safety from the PI by sailing East, North of Borneo and West of the Molucka Group.

The orders from 3rd Fleet pretty much coincide with our own picture:
CarDiv4 is to proceed South West to intercept/destroy enemy ships West of the Moluckas or force them to the east of the island chain – closer to the bombers on Palau.
The landing of Manado is to proceed as as ordered.

Two more CAs are supposed to meet up with us soon (Chokai and Maya) but may get delayed, since they will be used in an attempt to intercept enemy ships North of Boneo (Chokai) and North of Samar. The BBs East of Samar are ordered to hold their position for the same reason.

We expect quite a bit of action in our sector for tomorrow – any gate, 12 Fighters and 8 Bombers are being reported ready for action aboard for the day.




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RE: Ensign T. Toshio goes to War - 10/27/2007 12:54:27 AM   
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Dec. 12th, 1942

After a long and taxing day – our first in a combat zone – I just managed to join my messmates to share a commemorative cup of sake in honor of the first of the ships lost heroes in combat. Anyway, the recall to the plotting table was immediate.
Looks like my Officer, Lt. Goga takes care of his lot, while keeping his command efficient. Food (in a fashion) and drink where brought by orderlies and some sort of sleeping/resting facilities have been set up in the chart room.

After taking some luke warm tea, hard tack and rice aboard, I managed a short shut-eye; but relevant night time combat results started coming in.

The first report came from our forces hitting the beach at Tarakan.
The next originated from the BBs covering the Manado force:
Night Time Surface Combat at 41,67

Japanese Ships
BB Ise, Hyuga, Fuso, Yamashiro
DD Shiratsuyu, Shigure, Yamakaze, Kawakaze

Allied Ships
AK Elcano, Shell hits 8, and is sunk

The next encounter was North of Brunei:
Night Time Surface Combat at 33,55
Japanese Ships
CA Chokai
DD Sagiri
Allied Ships
AK Sagoland, Shell hits 16, Torpedo hits 1, and is sunk
AK Anakan, Shell hits 2, Torpedo hits 2, and is sunk
AK Bisayas, on fire
AK Compagnia Filipinas
AK Corregidor, Shell hits 2, on fire
AK Palawan, Shell hits 6, Torpedo hits 1, on fire, heavy damage

While the next encounter took place close to Legaspi
Night Time Surface Combat at 45,55
Japanese Ships
CA Maya
Allied Ships
MSW Bittern, Shell hits 3, and is sunk
MSW Lark, Shell hits 1, on fire, heavy damage
PC Napa, heavy damage
PC Genesee, Shell hits 7, and is sunk
AK Mayon, Shell hits 8, and is sunk

Looks like the CAs assigned to join us are crack ships !

The last report came from SS RO-34:

Allied Ships
MSW Finch, Torpedo hits 2, on fire, heavy damage – the ship was reported sunk.

Just a couple of minutes before false dawn, CL Oi alerted the TF because of an incoming bogey. Action stations ! The bogey turned out to be a lonely Catalina, damaged by our AA. Whether the Catalina managed to report our TF and its composition – or made it back to base is not known.

One hour later an urgent message was received from the Manado force: Enemy warships are approaching, probably intend on interfering with the landing operations.

A maximum effort strike from our TF was called for. All our bombers (16) went out and struck the approaching enemy:

Day Air attack on TF, near Manado at 39,67

Japanese aircraft
A6M2 Zero x 5
B5N2 Kate x 16

No Japanese losses

Allied Ships
DD Peary, Torpedo hits 2, on fire, heavy damage
DD Pillsbury, Torpedo hits 1, on fire, heavy damage

Aircraft Attacking:
3 x B5N2 Kate launching torpedoes at 200 feet
1 x B5N2 Kate launching torpedoes at 200 feet
4 x B5N2 Kate launching torpedoes at 200 feet
4 x B5N2 Kate launching torpedoes at 200 feet
4 x B5N2 Kate launching torpedoes at 200 feet

While the strike from our TF took care of one enemy TF, a second strike from the CVs North West of our position, successfully interfered with a second surface TF at extreme range:

Day Air attack on TF, near Manado at 39,67

Japanese aircraft
B5N2 Kate x 23

No Japanese losses

Allied Ships
DD John D. Ford, Bomb hits 5, on fire, heavy damage
DD Pope, Bomb hits 6, on fire, heavy damage
PG Isabel

Aircraft Attacking:
3 x B5N2 Kate bombing at 4000 feet
4 x B5N2 Kate bombing at 4000 feet
4 x B5N2 Kate bombing at 4000 feet
4 x B5N2 Kate bombing at 4000 feet
4 x B5N2 Kate bombing at 4000 feet
4 x B5N2 Kate bombing at 4000 feet

The covering force finished the attackers off:

Day Time Surface Combat, near Manado at 39,67

Japanese Ships
BB Ise
BB Hyuga
BB Fuso
BB Yamashiro
DD Shiratsuyu
DD Shigure
DD Yamakaze
DD Kawakaze

Allied Ships
DD Pillsbury, Shell hits 5, and is sunk
PG Isabel, Shell hits 3, and is sunk

Day Time Surface Combat, near Manado at 39,67

Japanese Ships
BB Ise
BB Hyuga
BB Fuso
BB Yamashiro
DD Shiratsuyu
DD Shigure
DD Yamakaze
DD Kawakaze

Allied Ships
DD John D. Ford, Shell hits 5, and is sunk
DD Peary, Shell hits 1, and is sunk
DD Pope, Shell hits 1, and is sunk

During the day, Hudsons probably from Ambon attacked the CLs West from us and the Manado force without result. An attack by those Hudsons on our ML west of the Moluckas was intercepted by our fighters – damaging two of the bombers.

Afternoon strikes from our TF had mixed results;

Day Air attack on TF at 39,73

Japanese aircraft
A6M2 Zero x 7
B5N2 Kate x 5

Japanese aircraft losses
B5N2 Kate: 1 damaged

Allied Ships
AK Antonio, Torpedo hits 2, on fire, heavy damage

Aircraft Attacking:
1 x B5N2 Kate launching torpedoes at 200 feet
4 x B5N2 Kate launching torpedoes at 200 feet

Day Air attack on TF at 39,74

Japanese aircraft
B5N2 Kate x 9

No Japanese losses

Allied Ships
AVD Sirius

Aircraft Attacking:
1 x B5N2 Kate bombing at 4000 feet
4 x B5N2 Kate bombing at 4000 feet
4 x B5N2 Kate bombing at 4000 feet

However:

Bombers from Brunei, Jolo Isl., the CVs, Palau and the northern CVLs kept up incessant attacks and scored hits on enemy shipping.

Our troops landed at Namlea secured the area.

An invasion force for Ambon has left Palau today.


Just a commentary from my side:

The action around Manado today showcases the game engine at its best. Just imagine a rather small landing force is going “in” in the first light, when two enemy forces of warships come close – previously undetected and not identified..
The smaller strike from the CVEs goes for the smaller force, while the bombers from the CVs attack the larger force with larger numbers at extreme range. Both take the stuffing out of the enemy.
And at long last the covering force (BBs) removes the thread.
From a tactical view, all of this is in perspective.

On the other hand: In the current configuration of the air component, CarDiv4 lacks “punch” - no doubt. But as long as the allied air disposition is in doubt, I can live with a bunch of transports escaping my grip, as long as my amphibious landings get through.





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