Observations: On the player side, Paul is perfect for me to oppose as Japan at this time with my experience. He is aggressive with a plan. He has secured the DEI and a large part of Australia. The Pacific is his playground. The tactics of not building up most bases makes retaking them especially precarious as no air fields or ports reward a successful landing leaving me especially vulnerable to the Kido Butai which has won it’s one large encounter with the USN at the Battle for Tabiteuea. Ensuing bombardments from Yamato and company make building and fortifying difficult at best. Unless I can pin the Kido Butai into an LBA sandwich in early to spring 1943 it will continue to hold back the dam of allied forces until fall. In China the battle has been titanic. The losses to both sides are bordering on lunacy. Here I have the great battle of Chungking, waged inside the capital for one day, to thank for a continued presence of China at all. The continuous shock attacks and endless bombing finally caught up with him. The loss of 1,ooo combat squads in one day resulted in a massive retreat across the Yangtze, restoring the lines from the spring and early summer. In the air in China I claim a victory as well as American squadrons, bought out early in the war, made their appearance in Asian skies and continue to shred IJAF formations over Chinese cities and army groups .Losses of aircraft and pilots has been acceptable compared with hundreds and hundreds of kills claimed there. Two squadrons alone boast over 400 air to air kills. Six operate in the theater. On the game side, it is time to take a close look at what we need to do and where in 1943. While the Kido Butai roams in CenPac and SoPac a real opportunity exists to evict the IJA from western Australia. Ample naval and transport lift exist and four reinforced US divisions are in or very close to SwPac. In SoPac there are the US Marine formations. In India-Burma there is just enough to force a one axis advance or land behind him.
At the strategic table: It will take a minimum of 60 days to launch a major seaborne invasion. It would take 24 hours to mount an atoll or unoccupied grab. Forces to take, build, and defend an objective are in place. Supply in SoPac is at over 400,ooo pts and 180,ooo pts of fuel are a week to ten days away. Fuel is at a premium in Australia and SoPac so this first large shipment will be necessary before any sizable operation is undertaken.
Intentions: At the current time, I fully plan on retaking Port Moresby, Horn Island, Ndeni, and Kira Kira before summer. I expect to have Rabaul surrounded and cut off by winter. If something goes wrong in SoPac, I will invade in western Australia with at least three divisions backed by SwPac air. The US Army will be tasked with New Guinea and the Marines with the Solomons. If it is quiet enough through the new year, B17 and Liberator strength should be sufficient for spring. All groups are filled out, some with reserves, and stock piling has begun. The B26 and B25 squadrons are filled out as well. SwPac boasts well over 100 B17 and B24s with a further 128 mediums, not counting DAF, RAAF, and RAF squadrons present. There are two operational P38 squadrons with crack pilots and reserve airframes for sweeping duties and three squadrons of Spitfires train hard for local forward CAP. US Marine air is very strong in SoPac and backed up by a further two fighter groups. Once Lexington weighs anchor, by Christmas I hope, a further 2 groups can be brought forward to CAP the advance.
Tactics: I will take Sulu Sea’s advice on carrier Ops and try and maximize what I have.. It looks like ten CVE, one CVL, and one fleet carrier for spring. Submarines, while hit hard in Manila, escaped west with few losses and have begun to deploy forward looking forward to spring. Some small mining ops have been made to mainland Japan and transit areas. NorPac will see a large feint in a vain hope to lure KB into the icy cold.