Thanks for all the responses!
AA was set to 100, NAD set to 10. I'm thinking that NAD setting is creating the inflated losses. I think I need to understand these attrition dividers better.
As to escorts, I just wasn't sure if transports added any inherent AA fire so now I know. In the future I will escort my transports.
As to why my fighters did not intercept I'm not sure. I will need to pay closer attention to weather in the future.
And for the 24 Swordfish pilots...they will all receive a Victoria Cross for bravely launching in unknown weather from their position aboard the HMS Eagle located just west of Corsica. Showing the undeniable audacity and tenacity of the Royal Navy, they continued eastward ACROSS the Northern Italian peninsula despite the presence of over 200 Italian and German fighter planes. Having reached the Adriatic they then located a troop convoy headed to North Africa and sank the lot. They repeated this exact same mission with success the following week. The actions of these pilots directly contributed to the early success of Commonwealth forces in Africa. The Swordfish pilots' actions are in keeping with the highest traditions of the Royal Navy and reflect great credit upon themselves, the naval air arm, the HMS Eagle, and His Majesty's Armed Forces. God save the King!
PS: the Captain of the HMS Eagle will be relieved of his command for allowing such a reckless mission, despite the success.
LOL, two full corps lost like that! Can you imagine? Probably would've knocked Italy clean out of the war.
Again, thanks all.