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RE: Letters. - 5/30/2017 10:43:54 AM   
ny59giants


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quote:

A F. Knox class?


Correct. She came out of Brooklyn shipyards the year before with the latest ASW package. We broke many ASW tracking records on that cruise, including tracking a diesel sub.

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Post #: 121
RE: Letters. - 6/7/2017 9:53:20 AM   
1275psi

 

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February 4th

The tanker has left, emptied, sucked dry.
And by now not a few men wish they have gone with her..
Still nothing. Still no word on the mission.

Ford, secretly, wonders if there is a mission..........

There has been only one flurry of action, Betties reported over Christmas island.
Briefly Chester has come to full availability downstairs, anticipating a strike against
a possible invasion.

But it has not come.
Boredom returns.

But the simmering frustration continues to grow. Half of Java has fallen, the final
battle for Singapore rages, the Japanese air force roams at will over the DEI's
And Chester steadily gains system damage.

Why is she waiting?

But unknown to all, except for her Captain, the answer to why approaches.........

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Post #: 122
RE: Letters. - 6/13/2017 9:33:52 AM   
1275psi

 

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February 5th

Chester comes awake jarringly, shockingly just after ten am.
Nobody will, afterwards, be able to say how long the Betty had been there, circling,
circling above the task force, but Ford would guess far, far too long.

Clear skies, bright sun, from 20000 feet the bloody thing would have been able to
count every goddam one of us.
The alarms ring, Chesters crew scrambles, the guns swing upwards (too slow, too slow!!!)
, swing upwards, impotent.
The Betty, mission completed, swings away east ward, and dwindles away.

How long before she returns.......with her many, many friends?


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Post #: 123
RE: Letters. - 6/14/2017 10:08:20 AM   
1275psi

 

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Shock watches the Bettie dwindle from sight, jaw agape.
Ford watches him, not the bomber, watches the blood drain from his Captains face.
And for just a moment, he see's his eyes.

"New course!, 270 !, 21 knots!, all ships conform!"


New course. Away from Christmas island.
Away
Away
Goddam it!.........away!


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Post #: 124
RE: Letters. - 6/14/2017 11:21:03 AM   
Bif1961


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Rhut Roo!

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Post #: 125
RE: Letters. - 6/15/2017 10:00:03 AM   
1275psi

 

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7th feb.

From SS O20
to
ABDA Command

Have unsuccessfully attacked CV Kaga, 20 miles south of Manando.
At least 3 other carriers in attendance
Enemy task force heading south by south west.
end

Mohammed is reluctant to go to the mountain. The mountain, it seems, might come for him......

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Post #: 126
RE: Letters. - 6/19/2017 10:23:09 AM   
1275psi

 

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8th Feb

Heart racing, pounding, driven half from exertion, and yes, half by fear,
Scotty scrambles up the ladder towards his gun. The alarms ring, clanging, clanging,
'to arms!, to arms!, to arms!'
Beneath him, Chester trembles, her fans rising in speed, her funnel banging, banging
as deep below sprayer punchers slam in the nozzles, pouring extra fuel into her ravenous boilers.
He enters the gun bay....Rob is already there, headset on, face pale.
"What have we got?!"
"Sixty plus!, from the North!"

Sixty!
And fear bubbles close.
Training kicks in.......automation kicks in.......the gun swings, the shells are fed,
the wind whips past stronger now, Chester heels, shaking, shaking

And there they are, black dots..growing black dots......coming swiftly across the sea

Scotty eyes his men.........we are ready.........we are ready........God,
war is upon me.

But the guns don't fire.
The fighters, the bombers sweep overhead, wings waggling
American fighters.
American bombers.
Carrier planes.


They join at dusk.
Unmistakable.
Two Great, great Ladies
Saratoga and Lexington.

Chesters wait is over.


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Post #: 127
RE: Letters. - 6/26/2017 8:04:16 AM   
1275psi

 

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9th of February.

The carriers take charge. Peter is almost literally run of his feet relaying
the messages flashed across the waters from the flag deck down to the bridge.
Steaming states.......formations......encounter procedures........action to take when
under air attack....or surface attack.
Shock grumbles........the unseen Admiral on The Lady Lex is "one pedantic barsted"

Peter is not alone in being busy. Later in the day Chester takes fuel from the Lady herself,
topping her tanks to almost brimming. All the ships top up.
And as Dusk falls, the entire group finally, finally abandons this empty spot of ocean
in the middle of nowhere, and heads south east.

Target Darwin
Radio intercepts apparently place this city too, on Japans menu.........








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Post #: 128
RE: Letters. - 6/26/2017 8:05:50 AM   
1275psi

 

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Singapore falls
Kendari falls
Soerabaya is pounded......and allied air begins to evacuate.

We have fought for every inch. With everything available, and more.
We have still lost

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Post #: 129
RE: Letters. - 7/10/2017 2:29:37 PM   
Lecivius


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Where, repeat where, is 1275psi? The world (myself included) wonders...

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Post #: 130
RE: Letters. - 7/11/2017 10:11:15 AM   
1275psi

 

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RL.............grrrrrrrrrrrrrr

and holidays

resumption soon

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Post #: 131
RE: Letters. - 7/11/2017 4:32:08 PM   
Ol_Dog


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The anticipation increases

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If you think you have everything under control, you don't fully understand the situation.

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Post #: 132
RE: Letters. - 7/12/2017 8:46:26 AM   
1275psi

 

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10th of Feb
There is no job in the world without its own unique little perk.
Young Peter cherishes his. Its a good un. A perk that not a few fellow ship mates would like to have.
Knowledge, inside knowledge, the inside run, the goss, the real deal.

Each flimsy, each signal. Its his job to keep all this to himself, and, I am pleased to say,
he does.
But its good to know what is going on.

Usually.

But this one , this signal, sends a shiver through him

From
CenPAC
to
TF 128

Firm intelligence places Darwin invasion force at sea
Known escort includes CV Akagi, 2 CVL
You are to utilise the theory of reasonable risk to possible reward, and,
if, in Commander 128's opinion, conduct a successful intercept, to do so.

As Peter leaves the bridge, Chester changes course.
South by south EAST.
Some one, apparently, thinks that 4 against 3 is odds good enough.


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Post #: 133
RE: Letters. - 7/12/2017 8:51:06 AM   
morejeffs

 

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Now this...is drama!

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Post #: 134
RE: Letters. - 7/13/2017 9:16:47 AM   
1275psi

 

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14th February
Some 200 miles North of Broome.

Yet again the catapult flings Cross and Jock into the air. There are no wobbles with
this take off, there have not been any for a while now.
Cross is learning, is gaining that one thing only time and practice can give...experience.
Everything in his cockpit is starting to show wear, including his face.
Its burnt deep brown now, and there are now minor crinkles about the eyes.
And the eyes........

They are harder now, . They move incessantly, and, and, how do you say this?.......they look
now. They don't just scan the seas and skies, they look, really, really look.
For both sea and skies are now filled with danger. Betties, submarines, Nells ( who
have been known to engage search planes), the subs, and now, now fighters, actual airborne
killers.

As they climb away from Chester, Jock loads his gun, chambers the first belt.
He does not say anything. They both don't have to.
War washes away everything superfluous.

The Japs are landing at Darwin
There, Just a zero's flight to the east.
Supported by Carriers.

Apparently, lots and lots of carriers.


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Post #: 135
RE: Letters. - 7/17/2017 9:29:14 AM   
1275psi

 

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15 Feb
CV Saratoga, CV Lexington.
Great Grand Ladies.
Not hard to think the three Brit carriers in company as daughters.
And all around them, spread across these brilliant blue seas, the accompanying destroyers and cruisers,
Chester amongst them.
They head East, due east, and at speed.

Dawn is breaking, and all the ships bustle.
On the carriers, the decks fill with aircraft. For years, years now, the theory of
carrier on carrier combat has been debated. The use of carrier on surface combatant as well.
Soon, tomorrow, at the latest, theories are going to be tested in the furnace of war.

Darwin is being assaulted.
Three small destroyers, Thracian, Van ness, Phillsbury have got in amongst the Japs
during the night, hit, hit hard....and been smashed in return.

Shock has had Ford on the hop, again and again, the man exuding nerves, and sweat In rivers. "Ïs this ready?", "ïs that ready?"
Ford has been from one end of Chester to another.
She is ready
She has to be.
As the dawn breaks, 2 things simultaneously.
'Many vals and kates over darwin'
and, ominously

Unseen, un detected until it is outbound, a Betty bomber takes in the whole task group,
and fills the world with electronic noise of its discovery.


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Post #: 136
RE: Letters. - 7/17/2017 11:35:15 AM   
ny59giants


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Cue up the theme song to "Jaws."

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Post #: 137
RE: Letters. - 7/17/2017 2:10:38 PM   
Bif1961


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It might not be tomorrow, but you have the Japanese in the position of the Japanese at Midway, a land strike from carriers while your decks are full of planes waiting to spot his carriers that launched that strike. Unfortunately for you, unlike Midway, you have been spotted first so there will be no surprise carrier strike.

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Post #: 138
RE: Letters. - 7/17/2017 2:12:54 PM   
Lecivius


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I'm just glad you're back

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Post #: 139
RE: Letters. - 7/18/2017 9:32:35 AM   
1275psi

 

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Scotty looks around his gun tub, around at his crew.
Mentally he checks things off, ammunition, ready and waiting.
His crew, all, obviously accounted for.
Helmets, flack jackets.......comms in place, power on,.

They are, materially it seems, as ready as they ever can be.
He re tightens his own helmet strap, scans the skies again.
Materially ready........but what of the human factor?
God. This could, soon, get very, very real.

I wish we had practiced more.






Peter enters the radio room, ready to take the next flimsy.
Radio chatter fills the room. The language is unknown to him.
"Who's that?"
The Comms CPO waves him to hush, leans closer to the radio.
The unidentifiable chatter rises, becomes shriller.

The Leading seaman whispers to peter.
"Ïts the Dutch..CL De Ryter, a Desroyer....God knows what they are doing there"

Peter recognises the Language now. he can't make out the words, but the language is Universal.
The language of men calling for help.
Of Men dying.

At 0700:
Saratoga flashes all ships.
'SET COURSE 090.........SPEED 26 KNOTS.'

At 0720, Darwin signals.
"Air raid overhead"


At 0722, another call, somehow clear and strong.

Static free.

'This is Hudson 72, Officer Smith, 140 miles due east Dilli.
To anyone who can hear. many carriers, course due West, speed 26 knots.
Goddam it...all 6 big barsteds, and the little ones too!.
I repeat, this is Hud.................


And then just the static, the static, the static.







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Post #: 140
RE: Letters. - 7/18/2017 1:35:37 PM   
Lecivius


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"Cannons to the left of them, cannons to the right". These guys are in for a serious ride.

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Post #: 141
RE: Letters. - 7/19/2017 8:47:57 AM   
1275psi

 

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Shock and Ford stand side by side on Chester's bridge.
Both have eyes fixated on Saratoga, waiting for what ever the Flagship decides to do.

Further news comes from Darwin. This is no raid, this is a full on invasion, Divisions strong.
The seas to the West crawl with Japanese ships.
The Engineer joins them on the bridge, summoned urgently
"Whats our fuel state like Engines?"
"80 percent"

Shock merely nods, sweat on the brow.
There is plenty. Plenty if Flank speed to Darwin is ordered.
Ford has already done the plotting. Flank speed ordered now.........
The beach head at dawn.


If, of course they made it.


And if on cue, Saratoga's lamp flashes

"task force new course.........180 degrees........flank"
180 degrees........GOD!, that's EAST!


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Post #: 142
RE: Letters. - 7/19/2017 12:11:04 PM   
ny59giants


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quote:

And if on cue, Saratoga's lamp flashes

"task force new course.........180 degrees........flank"
180 degrees........GOD!, that's EAST!


No, that's due South!

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Post #: 143
RE: Letters. - 7/19/2017 1:14:29 PM   
Wargmr


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quote:

ORIGINAL: ny59giants

quote:

And if on cue, Saratoga's lamp flashes

"task force new course.........180 degrees........flank"
180 degrees........GOD!, that's EAST!


No, that's due South!


I thought that was true :]

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Post #: 144
RE: Letters. - 7/19/2017 1:55:35 PM   
PaxMondo


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literary license or FOW?

I guess we await the next installment ...

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Post #: 145
RE: Letters. - 7/19/2017 7:50:59 PM   
BBfanboy


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quote:

ORIGINAL: PaxMondo

literary license or FOW?

I guess we await the next installment ...

Maybe Saratoga sent the back-bearing by mistake and really wants to bug out to the North!



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Post #: 146
RE: Letters. - 7/19/2017 8:28:28 PM   
Lecivius


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.




Attachment (1)

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Post #: 147
RE: Letters. - 7/20/2017 10:13:11 AM   
1275psi

 

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MY BAD!!!!

Yes, task force about face 180 degrees, new course 270!!!

Flank!!!

Run away, run away! (too amused to write serious stuff this post)

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Post #: 148
RE: Letters. - 7/20/2017 10:29:36 AM   
1275psi

 

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For a moment shock rules Chester's Bridge.
About face????..........course due West?.........Flank?

"They can't be serious, can they?" Ford gasps. Run away? The United States Navy
refusing a fight?
He can't accept it.
Almost in mute appeal, he turns towards Shock.
But Shock can, already has, already taking the bearings off the carriers, already
taking the steps to Follow Sara's great bulk West.


And turning West she is, hard.
Shock commands " Helmsman...Port 30!, revolutions 280!"

And that, thinks Ford, is that.
Forever, forever, the fleet that ran away..........





The Japs are swarming ashore at Darwin, backed by something unthinkable 4 months ago
Japan is not just gaining strategic advantage.
She is taking it, at her pleasure.

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big seas, fast ships, life tastes better with salt

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Post #: 149
RE: Letters. - 7/20/2017 8:22:46 PM   
BBfanboy


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No carrier clash! ...

Time for Occidentals and AAR readers to adopt "Oriental patience" I guess.
There will be a time and a place ...


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No matter how bad a situation is, you can always make it worse. - Chris Hadfield : An Astronaut's Guide To Life On Earth

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Post #: 150
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