From: Northwestern Georgia, USA
Sweeping Nagasaki: The carrier fighters finally broke loose and swept Nagasaki. The Hellcats started the onslaught, about 40 at a time. Then came a few Corsairs. These were strong enough to finally put the Japanese CAP out of action, so when a massive sweep of 700 Corsairs arrived, there was no opposition. I would've liked to have seen that 700-plane raid take on 250 or 300 fighters.
On the day, enemy losses were roughly 3:1.
But this raises several important questions:
1. What prevented the sweeps previously? Weather? Or was it indeed air superiority that the extra 150 or so Hellcats overcame? I confess I really don't know.
2. John's fighters didn't perform well against Hellcats. Is this a reflection of his pilot quality, as referred to yesterday, or was this an anomaly?
3. Does he still have "countless" fighters, handled by select pilots, that can handle CAP over his major bases for a long time to come?
4. Or are the Allies begin to break his back, from an air superiority standpoint?
5. Is it time to rev up the bombers, or should I sweep for a few more days to get a better feel for things.
One question that I think I know the answer to: It is indeed better for Death Star to remain on station here, serving in this Air Superiority role. If the Allies can achieve air superiority, or at a minimum keep John guessing and off balance, that enhances strategic bombing considerably. And SB is definitely the most efficient way to win the war.
Tomorrow I am likely to try for another massed sweep of either Nagasaki or Fukuoka. I may also try a variation, where the main sweeps hit one of those bases while a smaller sweep targets a secondary, less-defended target that will then also be hit by bombers. Shimonoseki is one possibility.
If Plan A for the Allied carriers become unnecessary or unproductive, Plan B involves the invasion of Malaya, refueling at Miri, and brining in additional supply from Boela. I'd prefer not to trigger that mission for at least a month, as optimally I'd like the empties at Boela to retrieve the supply from Oz rather than drawing down the big reserve at Boela itself.
< Message edited by Canoerebel -- 10/19/2017 3:36:51 PM >