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Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 2:34:50 PM   
Gary Childress


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If Yamamoto hadn't been killed and instead stayed the rest of the war as Japanese CinC, would there have been much difference? Would he have perhaps been able to delay some of the Japanese defeats?

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 3:06:27 PM   
Cpt Sherwood

 

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I doubt it. It is hard to make chicken soup using chicken poop.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 3:23:31 PM   
geofflambert


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But what if Yamamoto had come back as a zombie?

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 4:03:19 PM   
Mundy


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Agreed.  Yamamoto wasn't above bungling things as Midway showed.

Ed-

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 4:29:06 PM   
Chickenboy


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Mundy

Agreed.  Yamamoto wasn't above bungling things as Midway showed.

Ed-


Yup. Several campaigns (Midway, Coral Sea and much of the Solomons) were poorly orchestrated / planned / run before his demise. This trend (and the resultant spanking the Japanese took) would likely have continued or even accelerated as he overplayed his increasingly poor hand.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 5:06:23 PM   
gradenko_2000

 

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If you didn't know Yamamoto died in 43, you might think Operation Sho-Go was still one of his plans from how complex it was, so I doubt there would have been much improvement.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 5:36:56 PM   
Lokasenna


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quote:

ORIGINAL: gradenko_2000

If you didn't know Yamamoto died in 43, you might think Operation Sho-Go was still one of his plans from how complex it was, so I doubt there would have been much improvement.


This is what makes me think that the complexity of planning was an inherent flaw in the IJN doctrine, rather than unique to Yamamoto.

However, Sho-Go almost worked...

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 5:44:58 PM   
gradenko_2000

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Lokasenna
This is what makes me think that the complexity of planning was an inherent flaw in the IJN doctrine, rather than unique to Yamamoto.

However, Sho-Go almost worked...

I would agree. Yamamoto just happened to be the guy in the driver's seat, and Pearl Harbor was dead simple enough that it worked, but the IJN was going to come up with these overly elegant plans regardless.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 5:52:48 PM   
Chickenboy


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Lokasenna


quote:

ORIGINAL: gradenko_2000

If you didn't know Yamamoto died in 43, you might think Operation Sho-Go was still one of his plans from how complex it was, so I doubt there would have been much improvement.


This is what makes me think that the complexity of planning was an inherent flaw in the IJN doctrine, rather than unique to Yamamoto.

However, Sho-Go almost worked...


So-losses for Leyte Gulf were:

Allies: 1 CVL; 2 CVE; 2 DD; 1 DE, circa 200 planes

Japanese: 1 CV; 3 CVL; 3 BB; 10 CA; 11 DD, circa 500 planes

Even IF the IJN had been able to shoot up a few Allied transports and sink them with their contingents in toto (unlikely to have transpired in that fashion in any case), this was still a catastrophic loss for the IJN. It would not have been reversed by some additional damage to APA or AKAs disembarking the landing forces after the fact.

Sho-Go 'almost worked' in the same way that Midway almost was a Japanese victory and Hiroshima was a near-run thing. They had a chance right up until the point where they lost terribly and got pummeled.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 6:36:31 PM   
Lokasenna


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almost worked...if you consider that the war was already lost and it was really just a "fingering the hawk" move. The time for the momentum-stopping major actions was in late 1942/early 1943, not 1944/1945. The material effect of losing the landing forces wouldn't have meant much, but the effect on morale it would have had on morale is hard to estimate. And what if Admiral "likes to play soldier" Turner had been lost?!

But in seriousness, what could IJN do with a fleet of ships that had just been cut off from its fuel supply?

"fingering the hawk":

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 6:45:47 PM   
linrom

 

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It's hard to say when your enemy has your plans and knows all your moves in advance. At the very least, he might have figured out that US broke Japanese naval code. And that would have made a HUGE difference. For one, US couldn't just send a few tug boats to sink all the Japanese submarines because they knew their locations as soon as they came off the production line.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 6:48:59 PM   
gradenko_2000

 

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Sho-Go worked in the sense that Halsey took the bait almost exactly as the IJN had planned it.

Sho-Go did not work in the sense that even if Halsey took the bait, Kurita was completely unable to deliver.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 7:02:03 PM   
dr.hal


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Yamamoto was a product of his culture and as some have indicated above, that culture was the foundational source of destruction for the Japanese. The rigidity of rank and following orders, the lack of free will and the idea that to die for one's emperor rather than to live and fight another day all come together in an overwhelmingly negative approach to the task at hand, winning a war. In Japanese culture of the time, it was more important to die correctly than to win an action. What Japan needed and DIDN'T have was someone who could step outside that culture and still be acceptable. Look at Rear Admiral Tanaka... sidelined despite considerable success. Thus in answer to the question originally put forth, I don't think Yamamoto living would have made any difference. Him going earlier MIGHT have, but I doubt that too, as those who followed would not have challenged the main stream thinking of the time.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 7:19:34 PM   
Chickenboy


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quote:

ORIGINAL: gradenko_2000
Halsey took the bait


Halsey taking the bait was the 'cost' side of this equation. The Japanese were unable to deliver any benefit after Halsey beat on their carriers. A plan that doesn't maximize the benefits at the lowest possible cost is a poorly designed plan. The supposition that it 'worked' is incorrect, whether or not Halsey took the bait.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 7:23:08 PM   
Capt Hornblower


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It would be nice to think that had Yamamoto survived into 1945 he could have been well enough respected and influential to have convinced the Emperor and the High Command of the folly of continuing the war, had he wished.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 7:23:42 PM   
jeffk3510


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Gary Childress

If Yamamoto hadn't been killed and instead stayed the rest of the war as Japanese CinC, would there have been much difference? Would he have perhaps been able to delay some of the Japanese defeats?


That is a smiliar argument to Stonewall Jackson....

I don't think either would have made a difference..

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 7:49:20 PM   
Barb


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Chickenboy


quote:

ORIGINAL: Lokasenna


quote:

ORIGINAL: gradenko_2000

If you didn't know Yamamoto died in 43, you might think Operation Sho-Go was still one of his plans from how complex it was, so I doubt there would have been much improvement.


This is what makes me think that the complexity of planning was an inherent flaw in the IJN doctrine, rather than unique to Yamamoto.

However, Sho-Go almost worked...


So-losses for Leyte Gulf were:

Allies: 1 CVL; 2 CVE; 2 DD; 1 DE, circa 200 planes

Japanese: 1 CV; 3 CVL; 3 BB; 10 CA; 11 DD, circa 500 planes

Even IF the IJN had been able to shoot up a few Allied transports and sink them with their contingents in toto (unlikely to have transpired in that fashion in any case), this was still a catastrophic loss for the IJN. It would not have been reversed by some additional damage to APA or AKAs disembarking the landing forces after the fact.

Sho-Go 'almost worked' in the same way that Midway almost was a Japanese victory and Hiroshima was a near-run thing. They had a chance right up until the point where they lost terribly and got pummeled.


I cant fully agree with you - the question was not about sinking several APA/AKA/LSTs... It was the troops aboard. US would be SHAKEN AND SHOCKED by thousands of casualties aboard those ships! The public outrage would be such that Pearl Harbor thingy would appear like kids play. A regiment sunk means 3000 casualties. A Division 15000. Number you certainly don't want to appear on Newspapers across country.
Not to mention thousands tons of equipment, rations, munitions, airfield mats, tents, artillery, radar sets, etc. Operations at Philippines would be thrown back by several months at least.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 8:14:20 PM   
witpqs

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Lokasenna

almost worked...if you consider that the war was already lost and it was really just a "fingering the hawk" move. The time for the momentum-stopping major actions was in late 1942/early 1943, not 1944/1945. The material effect of losing the landing forces wouldn't have meant much, but the effect on morale it would have had on morale is hard to estimate. And what if Admiral "likes to play soldier" Turner had been lost?!

But in seriousness, what could IJN do with a fleet of ships that had just been cut off from its fuel supply?

"fingering the hawk":


My understanding is that the troops were all ashore already and only some supplies were still being unloaded.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 8:29:20 PM   
DivePac88


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As has been said already, with Yamamoto and his still being around in 1945, there could have been an earlier cessation of the war. Because for all of his command operational and tactical failures, Yamamoto was a realist when it came to the strategic situation. He had already in 1941 mapped out the basic outcome of the conflict, and history was to prove him was reasonably acute in his timeline and outcomes.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 9:22:27 PM   
Chickenboy


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Barb


quote:

ORIGINAL: Chickenboy


quote:

ORIGINAL: Lokasenna


quote:

ORIGINAL: gradenko_2000

If you didn't know Yamamoto died in 43, you might think Operation Sho-Go was still one of his plans from how complex it was, so I doubt there would have been much improvement.


This is what makes me think that the complexity of planning was an inherent flaw in the IJN doctrine, rather than unique to Yamamoto.

However, Sho-Go almost worked...


So-losses for Leyte Gulf were:

Allies: 1 CVL; 2 CVE; 2 DD; 1 DE, circa 200 planes

Japanese: 1 CV; 3 CVL; 3 BB; 10 CA; 11 DD, circa 500 planes

Even IF the IJN had been able to shoot up a few Allied transports and sink them with their contingents in toto (unlikely to have transpired in that fashion in any case), this was still a catastrophic loss for the IJN. It would not have been reversed by some additional damage to APA or AKAs disembarking the landing forces after the fact.

Sho-Go 'almost worked' in the same way that Midway almost was a Japanese victory and Hiroshima was a near-run thing. They had a chance right up until the point where they lost terribly and got pummeled.


I cant fully agree with you - the question was not about sinking several APA/AKA/LSTs... It was the troops aboard. US would be SHAKEN AND SHOCKED by thousands of casualties aboard those ships! The public outrage would be such that Pearl Harbor thingy would appear like kids play. A regiment sunk means 3000 casualties. A Division 15000. Number you certainly don't want to appear on Newspapers across country.
Not to mention thousands tons of equipment, rations, munitions, airfield mats, tents, artillery, radar sets, etc. Operations at Philippines would be thrown back by several months at least.


You're assuming too much.

A pair of DDs, a DE and some lightly armed CVEs extracted more than their share of blood from the attacking Japanese. If the Japanese had 'broken through' at Surigao, they would have had to move South to get to the transports still. Undoubtedly, they would have faced some additional opposition on their way there.

Had Oldendorf been able to detach some of his Samar fleet north or had Halsey been able to get off a strike against the Japanese, things could have turned out much worse for the Japanese. There was no reasonable outcome wherein most of the troops would be onboard the assault ships, awaiting their sinking patiently. There could have been WORSE historical outcomes for the Japanese, even if they had come into gun range of the Americans amphibious landings off of Leyte. So, even if 'successful' in getting at the amphibious landings, the outcome could have been worse for the Japanese.



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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 9:26:45 PM   
Chickenboy


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Capt Hornblower

It would be nice to think that had Yamamoto survived into 1945 he could have been well enough respected and influential to have convinced the Emperor and the High Command of the folly of continuing the war, had he wished.


I wonder if Yamamoto would have survived to the end of the war in any case. Militant agitators within the Japanese military and government killed off several ranking officers of 'suspect' loyalty near the end. Had Yamamoto spoken out and tried to convince the Emperor and High Command to accept surrender terms, I propose that he would have been assasinated in short order.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 9:27:19 PM   
mike scholl 1

 

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The only interesting difference I can see is that given the way Yamamoto liked to put to sea in BB's, he might have been commanding the "center force" during Leyte Gulf rather than Kurita. Then we might have found out just how much of a fighter he really was.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/22/2013 9:36:22 PM   
Termite2

 

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Yes, by oct 22nd, all the troops had landed. They sunk the CVE's on the 25th.

< Message edited by Termite2 -- 1/22/2013 9:37:18 PM >


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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/23/2013 12:04:28 AM   
Lokasenna


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quote:

ORIGINAL: mike scholl 1

The only interesting difference I can see is that given the way Yamamoto liked to put to sea in BB's, he might have been commanding the "center force" during Leyte Gulf rather than Kurita. Then we might have found out just how much of a fighter he really was.


I re-read a bit on Wiki about the pre-battle action, and how Kurita had to swim for it when his CA was torpedoed out from under him. And how he immediately got on Yamato.

Why wasn't he on Yamato to begin with? Some kind of humble vanity? I find it hard to believe that Atago (or was it Takao?) had better command facilities than Yamato, which was only 3 years old.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/23/2013 12:47:04 AM   
gradenko_2000

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: witpqs
My understanding is that the troops were all ashore already and only some supplies were still being unloaded.

Correct. Even if Kurita had managed to reach the transports, they would have all been mostly empty.
quote:

ORIGINAL: Lokasenna
I re-read a bit on Wiki about the pre-battle action, and how Kurita had to swim for it when his CA was torpedoed out from under him. And how he immediately got on Yamato.

Why wasn't he on Yamato to begin with? Some kind of humble vanity? I find it hard to believe that Atago (or was it Takao?) had better command facilities than Yamato, which was only 3 years old.

Kurita was on a cruiser because of IJN doctrine as it related to torpedo attacks and how cruisers were supposed to be the tip of the spear for such actions.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/23/2013 1:49:09 AM   
3rd ACR Tanker


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In all reality, the outcome would not have changed after Midway. But then it poses the question, just how different would the war had gone, if Yamamoto's commanders at Pearl Harbor, had launched a Third Strike against Pearl to get the dry docks and Oil tanks. Further raises the question of if we had not followed the destroyer as it ran back to the Japanese Fleet at Midway..Once Midway was over, I believe the handwriting was on the wall for Japan, so if Yamamoto had survived, I do not believe that it would have changed much. Yamamoto was a product of the pre-war indoctrination and as such struck me as unable or unwilling to learn new tricks and adapt to the ever changing situation. On the political side, the in fighting between the Navy and Army would not have abated, and if the Army felt he was more of a threat to the command culture, then I agree they would have done him in.

But that is what makes this game so great, knowing what we know now about him and his plans, we can fight it out just to see if anything would have changed. But that would mean, both sides would have to stick to what they knew then, and not play with hindsight. That would be an interesting project if it could be done.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/23/2013 3:12:31 AM   
scout1


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Gary Childress

If Yamamoto hadn't been killed and instead stayed the rest of the war as Japanese CinC, would there have been much difference? Would he have perhaps been able to delay some of the Japanese defeats?


Japan would have lost the war in an ugly fashion ........

Wait they did that anyway ......

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/23/2013 3:54:24 AM   
Sredni

 

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I wonder if he would have ended up tried and hung after the war if he made it that far.

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/23/2013 3:43:52 PM   
Lokasenna


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quote:

ORIGINAL: gradenko_2000

Kurita was on a cruiser because of IJN doctrine as it related to torpedo attacks and how cruisers were supposed to be the tip of the spear for such actions.


Learn something new on these forums just about every day. Thanks.


quote:

ORIGINAL: Sredni

I wonder if he would have ended up tried and hung after the war if he made it that far.


Given the pseudo-love affair that US culture seems to have with him, I'm not sure. Almost certainly he'd have been tried for something, but somehow I don't think he'd have been given a death sentence.

< Message edited by Lokasenna -- 1/23/2013 3:48:26 PM >

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RE: Had Yamamoto survived... - 1/23/2013 6:30:59 PM   
crsutton


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He died in April 1943. I would say that the war was already lost by that time. I doubt his presence would have had very little impact on the remainder of the war. Unless he could have convinced the Americans to build more BBs in lieu of Essex class carriers.....

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