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RE: Game is not broken, History is!

 
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RE: Game is not broken, History is! - 1/7/2010 8:15:28 AM   
gladiatt


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Caractacus

Can I add Marathon, Agincourt, the defeat of the Ottomans at Malta, and pretty much the whole of the First Crusade to the list?


good choice of examples

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Post #: 91
RE: Game is not broken, History is! - 1/7/2010 1:44:31 PM   
Joe D.


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Vladd


quote:

ORIGINAL: Joe D.

[New for the West: the Japanese knew the actual account for abt a quarter of a century; see http://www.combinedfleet.com/MidwayBook.htm


Indeed. It was new to me, anyway


Although I live in New England on the East Coast, from Japan we're all "the West"; if it wasn't for the work of the authors of Shattered Sword we'd all still marvel at the myth of the "Miracle at Midway".

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Post #: 92
RE: Game is not broken, History is! - 1/7/2010 2:19:24 PM   
fbs

 

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If there is one really freak incident, that was Doolittle's B-25 bomber flying flying so close to the transport aircraft carrying General Tojo's on Apr 18 1942, that one of Tojo's secretaries could "see the face of the pilot flying that aircraft".

The B-25 could actually have shot him down. I wonder what the Japanese would have thought of the Cosmic Random Number Generator if their prime minister was shot down on the very first raid on Japan

Thanks,
fbs



< Message edited by fbs -- 1/7/2010 9:29:11 PM >

(in reply to Joe D.)
Post #: 93
RE: Game is not broken, History is! - 1/7/2010 11:03:57 PM   
Captain


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Joe D.


New for the West: the Japanese knew the actual account for abt a quarter of a century; see http://www.combinedfleet.com/MidwayBook.htm


I read the article. The authors have an interesting theory and it is well argued. However, at least in my case, it raises more question. As I understand it, the basic premise is that previous accounts were flawed because they relied too much on the USSBS interrogation of japanese officers ("USSBS"), Nagumo's report ("NR")and Fuchida's 1955 book, with emphasis on the latter.

Not to turn this into a batlle of historians, but Morison first published his Midway book in 49 and 1st revised it in 53. He relied primarily on USSBS and NR. In his 2nd revised edition dated 59 which is the one I have, he acknowledges having read Fuchida's book to doublecheck his Midway chapter although Fuchida is not quoted as a source. USSBS and NR remained his primary sources.

The problem every historian has faced trying to write the story of Midway from the Japanese side is the fact that all of the logs from the 4 CVs were lost and many of IJN officers involved did not survive the war.

Let's look at one of the main issue, namely whether any planes were on the CVs deck during the crucial 0730 - 1020 period.

Morison states that at 0730, a ready force of 93 planes were on the decks ready to take off. Patch and Tully state that they must have been in the hangars based on IJN carrier doctrine. This may well be true, Morison does not quote a source. It may have been a misunderstanding by the US authors as to how IJN CVs worked.

As additional proof, they use a reconstituted log of Akagi's flight operations pulled from the NR which shows fighters taking off and being recovered regularly as proof that no dive or torpedo bombers could have been on the deck during that period.

You can find the report here:

http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/Japan/IJN/rep/Midway/Nagumo/

the important bit is here:

http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/Japan/IJN/rep/Midway/Nagumo/#III-2

you have to look at June 5th since the fleet used Tokyo time. The important part is that the log only mentions flights from the Akagi, there is no mention of the other 3 CVs. The authors presume the 3 other CVs were doing the exact same thing, but there is no documentation of their flight activities. The other problem when dealing with the NR is that no one knows under what conditions it was written since Nagumo did not survive the war. It appears to have been written purely from memory, so no one knows how accurate it is.

Again if we move on to the period just before the attack, the authors state that there would have been no planes on the decks except fighters when the SBDs attacked. Morison mentions nothing about planes on the Akagi, presumably because he had no info. He states that Kaga had about 40 planes being fueled and armed. The source appears to be capt. Aoki of the Kaga. The Soryu is supposed to be turning into the wind to launch a strike. The souce for this is Capt. Ohara, the executive officer of Soryu. This is more of an issue for me since Morison quotes actual eyewitness accounts while Patch and Tully again appear to be relying primarily on their log.

I dont know if the book contains more supporting documentation, but would be interested in finding out. So far I do not find their evidence to be as solid as they make it out to be.


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Post #: 94
RE: Game is not broken, History is! - 1/7/2010 11:47:45 PM   
Joe D.


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Captain

... The problem every historian has faced trying to write the story of Midway from the Japanese side is the fact that all of the logs from the 4 CVs were lost and many of IJN officers involved did not survive the war.


But the flight logs did survive; a chronolgy of IJ fighter operations and a consolidated operational log of all 4 IJN CVs is published in the appendices of Shattered Sword.

quote:

ORIGINAL: Captain
Let's look at one of the main issue, namely whether any planes were on the CVs deck during the crucial 0730 - 1020 period.

Morison states that at 0730, a ready force of 93 planes were on the decks ready to take off. Patch and Tully state that they must have been in the hangars based on IJN carrier doctrine. This may well be true, Morison does not quote a source ...


Senior officers Lt. Dick Best and Lt. Cdr Maxwell Leslie reported few if any planes on the IJN CV decks during their attacks.

These and other eye witness accounts are all documented in Sword's Chapter 12 -- The Fallacious Five Minutes - 1020-1025



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The best fighter-bomber of World War II

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Post #: 95
RE: Game is not broken, History is! - 1/8/2010 1:05:47 AM   
Captain


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Joe D.

But the flight logs did survive; a chronolgy of IJ fighter operations and a consolidated operational log of all 4 IJN CVs is published in the appendices of Shattered Sword.



That is interesting. If they have uncovered new documents, it would interesting to pick up the book just to see what all the fuss is about...



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Post #: 96
RE: Game is not broken, History is! - 1/8/2010 2:26:09 AM   
Fishbed


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Documents were there - no-one cared about translating them into English before though.

Buy the book and come back to us afterwards Captain, very nice reading. Read it in a matter of days, that's just pure fun


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Post #: 97
RE: Game is not broken, History is! - 1/8/2010 3:53:34 PM   
Joe D.


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Captain

quote:

ORIGINAL: Joe D.
But the flight logs did survive; a chronolgy of IJ fighter operations and a consolidated operational log of all 4 IJN CVs is published in the appendices of Shattered Sword.


That is interesting. If they have uncovered new documents, it would interesting to pick up the book just to see what all the fuss is about...


For us, the "'fuss" is about historical accuracey, but for the wounded Japanese warriors of Midway, it proved an additional price they were forced to pay to maintain a state-sponsored fiction: they were returned to Japan under tight security and forbidden all outside contacts until they could be "healed, heartened, hushed and reassigned" in that order.

In practice, many of these wounded were sequestered in clinics -- where they were shamed by their own med staff -- to keep the destruction of the Kido Butai a secret. They were eventually shipped back to the Pacific from where many would never return w/o any leave, thus never saying a final goodbye to their families.

The Japanese public was informed that Midway was a great victory; they were given a "revised" IJN damage list of 1 CV sunk and 1 CV and 1 CA damaged w/the loss of only 35 AC.

_____________________________

Stratford, Connecticut, U.S.A.

"The Angel of Okinawa"

Home of the Chance-Vought Corsair, F4U
The best fighter-bomber of World War II

(in reply to Captain)
Post #: 98
RE: Game is not broken, History is! - 1/8/2010 10:42:22 PM   
JeffroK


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I hope that relying on Shattered Sword does not led us into another era of being misled.

The new book is very interesting, and clears up a lot of misunderstood  areas.

But it also needs time and other researchers to review and possibly challenge it.

Re the comment that the IJN plan for Miday was flawed is spot on. IFF everything went right at sea, and the IJN
made it to Midway, they were not capable of landing and capturing the island.
IFF they just went to draw out the USN CV force they totally botched the operation.


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Interdum feror cupidine partium magnarum Europae vincendarum

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Post #: 99
RE: Game is not broken, History is! - 1/8/2010 10:57:07 PM   
Joe D.


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quote:

ORIGINAL: JeffK

... IFF they just went to draw out the USN CV force they totally botched the operation.



Well, the Kido Butai did draw out the USN CVs, they just drew them out sooner than they anticpated.

Of course, one can argue it was breaking the IJ code that drew the USN's CVs to Midway.

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"The Angel of Okinawa"

Home of the Chance-Vought Corsair, F4U
The best fighter-bomber of World War II

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Post #: 100
RE: Game is not broken, History is! - 1/10/2010 6:58:08 PM   
Captain


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Joe D.


For us, the "'fuss" is about historical accuracey,



We all have the same objective, namely to uncover the truth. I dont know why you would assume otherwise.

If the authors of Shattered Sword have investigated new documents that other historians ignored and can back up their interpretation with facts, fine.

Looking at new sources or taking a fresh look at existing sources is how history evolves. Glantz has done a lot of interesting work on the Eastern Front by mining overlooked German and Soviet sources. However, I have been studying military history long enough to know that it is dangerous to look to just one author or one book as the undisputable source on a subject. In history, as in everything else trends come and go.

Furthermore, even if we assume Patch and Tully's intrepretation is 100% correct, namely that Nagumo could not launch a strike against the US CVs before 11 a.m., it still does not change the basic fact that the US got lucky by having the Enterprise and Yorktown SBDs arrive on taget at the best possible time. If they had arrived 5-10 minutes earlier or later, the results might have been entirely different.

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Post #: 101
RE: Game is not broken, History is! - 1/11/2010 12:08:22 AM   
spence

 

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The luck was equally distributed. Before the Japanese had launched even one aircraft to strike the American carriers the Americans had 175 bomb/torpedo carrying aircraft winging their way towards the Kido Butai. The fact they arrived one squadron at a time for 3 hours is not at all a demonstration of Japanese superiority: just a demonstration of Japanese luck. It just finally ran out after that.

(in reply to gladiatt)
Post #: 102
RE: Game is not broken, History is! - 1/11/2010 1:41:07 AM   
Joe D.


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Captain
If the authors of Shattered Sword have investigated new documents ...


Not investigated new documents, but presented translated old documents.





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Home of the Chance-Vought Corsair, F4U
The best fighter-bomber of World War II

(in reply to Captain)
Post #: 103
RE: Game is not broken, History is! - 1/11/2010 4:19:26 AM   
Fishbed


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Captain


quote:

ORIGINAL: Joe D.


For us, the "'fuss" is about historical accuracey,



We all have the same objective, namely to uncover the truth. I dont know why you would assume otherwise.

If the authors of Shattered Sword have investigated new documents that other historians ignored and can back up their interpretation with facts, fine.

Looking at new sources or taking a fresh look at existing sources is how history evolves. Glantz has done a lot of interesting work on the Eastern Front by mining overlooked German and Soviet sources. However, I have been studying military history long enough to know that it is dangerous to look to just one author or one book as the undisputable source on a subject. In history, as in everything else trends come and go.

Furthermore, even if we assume Patch and Tully's intrepretation is 100% correct, namely that Nagumo could not launch a strike against the US CVs before 11 a.m., it still does not change the basic fact that the US got lucky by having the Enterprise and Yorktown SBDs arrive on taget at the best possible time. If they had arrived 5-10 minutes earlier or later, the results might have been entirely different.


When it comes to accuracy, sure thing. When it comes to CAP interference or a possible counter-strike, I seriously doubt it. And like said afterwards, what happened this way is more an illustration of USN's ability to nearly waste a golden opportunity thanks to its bad air coordination (the Hornet planes didn't even make it to target for God sake!) than the illustration of the divine intervention of pure luck. Although arguably putting a single bomb on Akagi out of three planes was quite something ^^

So will you read the book now and come back discuss it later? Although I can mostly only agree with what you're saying, you definitely give the impression that you don't want to get proven wrong. We don't care about this, and there's no "being right" or "being wrong", so go read it and come afterwards, would you please Captain?

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Post #: 104
RE: Game is not broken, History is! - 1/11/2010 9:53:28 AM   
John Lansford

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Captain


quote:

ORIGINAL: Joe D.

But the flight logs did survive; a chronolgy of IJ fighter operations and a consolidated operational log of all 4 IJN CVs is published in the appendices of Shattered Sword.



That is interesting. If they have uncovered new documents, it would interesting to pick up the book just to see what all the fuss is about...




If you've not read it, I don't see how you could be criticizing what was said in the book. That's like someone criticizing a movie without going to see it.

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Post #: 105
RE: Game is not broken, History is! - 1/11/2010 4:14:48 PM   
mdiehl

 

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quote:

If they had arrived 5-10 minutes earlier or later, the results might have been entirely different.


Nope. Ten minutes either side, none of the Japanese CVs were in a position to put up new CAP. The only luck the USN had at Midway was bad luck. If Hornet's strike hadn't gone haring off, the Japanese would have lost many more ships. If the SBDS and TBDs had arrived together, most of the Japanese CVs would have taken torpedo hits (as happened at Coral Sea), and more of the Japanese CAP would have been shot down by US fighter escorts in the process.

As I see it, pretty much everything went wrong for the USN that could go wrong, but the plan, being sound, simple, and fault tolerant, worked. As I see it, there was no way for the Japanese to win, since even ONE American carrier showing up would ruin their plan entirely. The Japanese plan was complicated, understrength, required perfect timing, and was completely intolerant of flaws in Japanese execution or the presence of USN CV based opposition.

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Show me a fellow who rejects statistical analysis a priori and I'll show you a fellow who has no knowledge of statistics.

Didn't we have this conversation already?

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Post #: 106
RE: Game is not broken, History is! - 1/11/2010 4:21:59 PM   
Captain


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quote:

ORIGINAL: John Lansford

If you've not read it, I don't see how you could be criticizing what was said in the book. That's like someone criticizing a movie without going to see it.



I am not criticizing a book, I thought we were discussing the battle of Midway

re the book, I have ordered it.

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Post #: 107
RE: Game is not broken, History is! - 1/11/2010 4:30:36 PM   
Captain


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Fishbed


Although I can mostly only agree with what you're saying, you definitely give the impression that you don't want to get proven wrong.



certainly not the impression I want to give, sorry if it came across that way. I can be argumentative, but I am sure I am not the only one.

The Pacific Theater used to be my favorite. I read about 75% of Morison's history, but that was about 20 years ago, I may have some brushing up to do...

I own WITP, but only picked up WITPAE before Xmas, still getting back into it. I guess my avatar and sig may be a clue as to which side I prefer...


< Message edited by Captain -- 1/11/2010 4:57:40 PM >


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