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- 9/5/2001 10:22:00 AM   
Chiteng

 

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Yes I am aware that every other Sunday they had been in port. Yes I am aware of the sceduling. However you look at the events isolated from the rest of the world if you only evaluate on that basis. The facts are that THAT weekend everything was FAR
from normal. The Japanese invasion fleets had been
spotted and shadowed for days. Everyone KNEW that
war was imminent. That was NOT the case in the previous weekends. I would also argue that Saratoga being in the vicinity would hardly have been usefull since she had already offloaded
her fighters. If you had been Kimmel, would you have simply
sat still waiting for word of hostilities?
He was an aggressive commander. He sent the fleets out with delibretely vauge orders.
They could be interpeted any way the Task Force
commander wanted. Sure the CV 'could' have been in the port, but to assume that they WOULD be in the port was simply
defying human behavior. They were fast fleet
assets and the commander used them.
I dont think Yamamoto actually felt he would
catch them in port. He merely 'hoped' that he would. As for the best target: I would assert they should have destroyed the tank farm and the sub
pens rather than hammer the BB's.
A ship w/o fuel doesnt move. I used to be a fanatic conspiracy theorist on this
topic, much convinced that everything pointed
to FDR allowing the fleet to be bombed.
I now realize that EVEN if he wanted to do that
King would have never allowed it.
King was a fanatic about navy assets. No FDR was an unplesant Prez but he wasnt that
callous. It would take a man like Marlbough
or Napoleon to set up that type of causus belli.

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Post #: 31
- 9/5/2001 12:07:00 PM   
byron13


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Jeez, Timjot, don't you have anything else to do? How many was that - eighteen posts in a row? I didn't realize how nuttily lucky we were. Er, I mean, how well we planned the carrier dispositions while waiting for the inevitable strike on Pearl that we knew was coming THAT weekend. In fact, we knew it was coming on Sunday and not Saturday. Think you got the Hornet and the Wasp mixed up. Just checked a navy site, and the Wasp was operational in 1940 (after taking FOUR years to build!). It was the Hornet that was still working up. Pretty good site at www.chinfo.navy.mil/navpalib/ships/carriers/
You should go to the site and look at the phenomenal numbers of Essex class carriers we pumped out. I count 20 - not to mention the Midway, Ticonderoga, and Saipan classes laid down during the war! You know, I'd forgotten all about the Ranger. How'd you like to have to be a Ranger fighter pilot sitting in the bar with a bunch of pilots from the Enterprise? What a drag! ("Yeah, I know you've got eight kills, but have you ever seen an iceberg?") Chiteng, Kimmel was a battleship guy. If he was so raring to go, why was it just the carriers that were out of barn? Why not flush the battleships as well to intercept a potential invasion fleet? Or was he SO tuned in that he knew that it would just be a carrier strike with no surface combatants to speak of? And if he were so perspicacious and prescient as to believe the risks were too high at Pearl because of a potential strike, why were the carriers 1) operating singly and not grouped 2) well away from Pearl (the obvious target) and 3) operating way to the west, closer to Japan and, after delivering aircraft, presumably with a reduced air compliment? Everything I see indicates that the Japanese just didn't happen to catch them in the nest - whether by luck or chance. Okay, guys, trivia question: what was the name of the one numbered carrier, e.g., CV-5, that was never completed?

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Post #: 32
- 9/5/2001 3:14:00 PM   
Chiteng

 

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Byron, The minutes of the meeting on Thursday 4, 1941?
exist.
Sorry exact dates I am NOT so good at.
In any case: He asked Halsey if he wanted to use the BB. Halsey said: 'No, they are too damn slow' So the BB got left behind. At a million gallons of oil per ship I can see why.

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Post #: 33
- 9/5/2001 5:11:00 PM   
moore4807


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OK Byron
I'll bite (or byte?) who/what was CV-5? hmmm, maybe converted to what?- I'm guessing Ranger class or, maybe even an airship for planes? (really going out on a limb) Hindenburg style?
LOL!!! just skippy huh? ROFLMAO!
Gday mate!

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Post #: 34
- 9/5/2001 9:04:00 PM   
TIMJOT

 

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quote:

The facts are that THAT weekend everything was FAR
from normal. The Japanese invasion fleets had been
spotted and shadowed for days. Everyone KNEW that
war was imminent. That was NOT the case in the previous weekends. I would also argue that Saratoga being in the vicinity would hardly have been usefull since she had already offloaded
her fighters.
Actually things were pretty normal. Weekend leaves were granted to the Fleet. No additional air recon or sea patrols. Contrary to your statement, only one fleet was briefly sited on the 6th off the coast on Indo-china. The contact was quickly lost and the siting was inconclusive to say the least because at the time it was heading west toward Japanese controlled Indo china. Even the Brits, who were the only ones threaten by this fleet took no overt actions The Saratoga wasnt in the vacinity the Enterprise was. Either way I dont get your arguement here.

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Post #: 35
- 9/5/2001 9:15:00 PM   
TIMJOT

 

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quote:

If you had been Kimmel, would you have simply
sat still waiting for word of hostilities?
He was an aggressive commander. He sent the fleets out with delibretely vauge orders.
They could be interpeted any way the Task Force
commander wanted.
No...but thats exactly what he did. What was so vague about his orders? He sent the Enterprise and Lexington taskforces out to delivery fighters to Wake and Midway with orders to return to the fleets as fast as possible. Sounds like a pretty clear cut mission to me. The cruisers were on practice manuevers off Johnston Island, that had been planned months ahead of time. If he was really worried of an attack he would have increased air recon, sent out picket ships and possitioned subs to cover the the approaches to PH. The Fact is no one expected the Japanese to be foolish enough to attack PH.

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Post #: 36
- 9/5/2001 9:20:00 PM   
TIMJOT

 

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[QUOTE] As for the best target: I would assert they should have destroyed the tank farm and the sub
pens rather than hammer the BB's.
A ship w/o fuel doesnt move. [/QUOTE/] I would agree with you here, but in all fairness Yammamoto's planned third strike was to eliminate them. It was Nagumo loseing is nerve that saved them from destruction. In fact had Nagumo allowed the 3rd strike they probably could have caught the returning Enterprise.

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Post #: 37
- 9/5/2001 9:28:00 PM   
TIMJOT

 

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quote:

Sure the CV 'could' have been in the port, but to assume that they WOULD be in the port was simply
defying human behavior. They were fast fleet
assets and the commander used them.
I dont think Yamamoto actually felt he would
catch them in port. He merely 'hoped' that he would.
Actually Kimmel was a "BIG GUN" Adm. he saw the Aircraft carriers sole purpose as to providing aircover and scouting for what he called his "BATTLE FORCE" the BB's of his Fleet. He did not see them as a decisive offensive weapon in their own right. Thats why he prefered to keep them close to his BB's as possible and thats why he ordered Halsey to return as fast as possible. [ September 05, 2001: Message edited by: TIMJOT ]



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Post #: 38
- 9/5/2001 9:31:00 PM   
byron13


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Hey, Skippy, don't come a raw prawn with me! Actually, the CV-5 was just an example. The number of carrier in question was CV-35. Given the number, you can guess that it was an end-of-war throw away. I'll titillate everyone all day and let them squirm until I release the official winning answer. More likely someone will pull out their multi-volume set on naval history and get the right answer. Chiteng: To be sure, the BB's slowed the CV's down to the point that they probably didn't train much together. But I think you're suggesting that Kimmel (of all people) had the fast carriers out on a war footing almost looking for a fight becuase he saw that war was imminent THIS weekend but not the weekend before. Of course, he had the war warning cable from Washington, but the carriers were clearly out doing aircraft transport duty - not hunting Japanese - and Kimmel had nothing to do with that. Furthermore, any aggressive commander itching for a fight would have flushed the battleships as well. What a dream! The full weight of the Pacific fleet fresh and topped off fighting a sea battle in its own backyard with the Japanese after they've traveled half way around the world. Sorry, you're not going to convince me that Kimmel (especially) or anyone else had a "plan" to keep the carriers out of port that day. And I'm not saying that Yammamoto counted on catching the carriers, but he certainly hoped he would and planned for that contingency. Okay, one last hint on CV-35. It had a distinctly un-American name and actually sounds very English. Which brings up another point: I wish we'd quit the naming of carriers after people and go back to the traditional names. I wouldn't mind seeing the tenth Wasp or another Ranger, Saratoga, or Lexington in the inventory. The U.S.S. John C. Stennis just doesn't cut it for me.

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Post #: 39
- 9/5/2001 9:34:00 PM   
TIMJOT

 

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quote:

I used to be a fanatic conspiracy theorist on this
topic, much convinced that everything pointed
to FDR allowing the fleet to be bombed.
I now realize that EVEN if he wanted to do that
King would have never allowed it.
King was a fanatic about navy assets.
I agree there was no PH conspiracy. Yes FDR wanted to get into the war and did see Japan as a possible backdoor way into a war with Hitler. He was however thinking more on the lines of an attack on the Philipines. He accordingly refused to allow any large scale naval rienforcement of those Islands. You forget FDR was a former Secretary of the navy and loved the fleet, he would never had deliberately sacrificed it.

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Post #: 40
- 9/5/2001 9:54:00 PM   
TIMJOT

 

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quote:

Think you got the Hornet and the Wasp mixed up. Just checked a navy site, and the Wasp was operational in 1940 (after taking FOUR years to build!). It was the Hornet that was still working up. Pretty good site at www.chinfo.navy.mil/navpalib/ships/carriers/
You should go to the site and look at the phenomenal numbers of Essex class carriers we pumped out. I count 20 - not to mention the Midway, Ticonderoga, and Saipan classes laid down during the war!
I stand corrected. Your right the Wasp was a scaled down Yorktown class carrier to fit Treaty requirements. The navy wasnt too happy with the results and decided to revert back to the Yorktown class for the Hornet when it was obvious that no one was abiding by the treaty anymore. Thanks for the link. I agree about the Essex numbers just recently found out, I previously thought the number was closer to 10, of course many of the latter ones were not operational before the war ended. With those numbers can any dought that Japan simply could not win a total war with the USA.

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Post #: 41
- 9/6/2001 2:19:00 AM   
byron13


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That really is a neat site. Curious about the Wasp being scaled down and the Hornet scaled back up. I don't know any more than what I see on this particular site. They list both as being Hornet class with the Enterprise and Yorktown being Yorktown class. Took a little scroll through the battleships on that site and was reading about the West Virginia. Seems when they finally started working on her, they obviously found a number dead crewman. Unfortunately, they found a scratch off calendar that someone had diligently marked off until the end. The last mark was December 23rd - some two weeks after the raid. I knew they could hear people inside some of the other ships for a couple of days, but I didn't know some had lived for two weeks. What a tragedy; to be alive for two weeks and so close to help but not have anyone 1) know you were there or 2) able to reach you. My salute to those that never had the chance to fight.

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Post #: 42
- 9/6/2001 2:22:00 AM   
byron13


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The fact that the Wasp apparently took four years to build would be explained by either a redesign as you suggested or maybe a temporary halt due to either budget constraints or concerns about the Treaty. Anyone have any ideas?

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Post #: 43
- 9/6/2001 8:35:00 AM   
TIMJOT

 

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quote:

Originally posted by byron:
The fact that the Wasp apparently took four years to build would be explained by either a redesign as you suggested or maybe a temporary halt due to either budget constraints or concerns about the Treaty. Anyone have any ideas?
The Wasp was slightly shorter and had less compartmentalization to save on tonnage. Many experts believe that its lack of compartments contributed to its sinking relatively easily compared to other US carriers. I would guess budget and contruction retraints for its long building time. I believe the Hornet was slightly longer than the Yorktown class, but otherwise identical. Not sure about that though. [ September 05, 2001: Message edited by: TIMJOT ]



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Post #: 44
- 9/7/2001 8:09:00 AM   
byron13


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Timjot, you're pretty smart - until I disagree with you. And I disagree with what both you and Chiteng say about the tank farms. Placing myself in the Japanese shoes, I definitely would have rated hitting the battleships above the tank farms. First, I would probably still believe that battleships were going to be the primary weapons used in the war, and getting rid of them would be first priority. Second, destroying the tank farms may have made a big mess and put a crimp in things for awhile, the oil itself was easily replace, the farms could be rebuilt in six months and, in the meantime, the Pacific fleet could refuel directly from tankers. Those battleships that were recovered, on the other hand, generally took two years to get back in service. I don't see a contest here. I'm disappointed that no one is aching to know what CV-35 is. Fine. I shouldn't tell you, but it was the U.S.S. Reprisal. Told you it wasn't very American. Sounds more British - like the Revenge. Never completed nor commissioned. Hull, 53% complete, was sold to Boston Metals Co, Baltimore, Md. and scrapped November 1949. Skippy wins the prize for most interested.

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- 9/8/2001 6:28:00 AM   
Ringbolt

 

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Do you know why they chose Reprisal? Intrepid and Enterprise were both RN names we lifted in the Revolution for our new navy. I dont recall a previous USS Reprisal though so that is odd. Was in maybe named in to make Churchill happy maybe?
They probably scrapped it because they realised the name stunk.
Ringbolt

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- 9/8/2001 8:15:00 AM   
Greg Wilmoth

 

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quote:

Originally posted by TIMJOT:
The Wasp was slightly shorter and had less compartmentalization to save on tonnage. Many experts believe that its lack of compartments contributed to its sinking relatively easily compared to other US carriers. I would guess budget and contruction retraints for its long building time. I believe the Hornet was slightly longer than the Yorktown class, but otherwise identical. Not sure about that though. [ September 05, 2001: Message edited by: TIMJOT ]
You're basically right about the lack of protection. That was a tradeoff for airplane capacity. The Navy wanted about the same number of planes as a Yorktown class carrier but on a 14,000 ton displacement. Protection was sacrificed. And I've heard and read the same thing; they paid the price when she was torpedoed. There were design changes as she went along; the island wasn't in the original design. That added to the displacement. I speculatee stretching out construction would also her past the expiration of the naval treaties and allow the extra weight, although I don't know that for a fact. Norman Friedman's coffee table sized book on American aircraft carriers says the reason the Navy made the Hornet a repeat Yorktown was because too much of the their design staff was working on the Iowa class battleships, the first pair also laid down in 1939. That delayed the Essex design, although he says it's curious because they could have contracted the work out to private firms, and they had done so in the past.

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- 9/8/2001 11:32:00 PM   
grumbler

 

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USS Wasp and USS Ranger were both designed and built to specific displacements as a result of the naval treaties, and both suffered as a result. Hornet, as noted above, was started after the treaty limitations had expired. Wasp was badly delayed by design changes undertaken in 1939 when the treaty limitations were abandoned. Speed got a modest boost, at the cost of some additional displacement. The delay was not really all that significant: she was 48 months from being laid down to being commisioned, while Yorktown was 40 months, Enterprise 46 months, and Hornet (which benefitted from the war scare as well as being a follow-on to two previous efforts) a mere 25 months (and in fact, the Hornet had something of a USN record for prewar ships: she was only 37 months from being laid down to being sunk!)

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- 9/8/2001 11:39:00 PM   
grumbler

 

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An interesting side note on the name USS Reprisal: CL-100 was originally given this name, before it was changed to USS Newark and then again to CVL-30 USS San Jacinto when she was converted. I am still looking for more examples of the US adoption, for a time, of British style warship names. Alas, my entire collection of Friedman books is out on loan. Does anyone else have them, and can they look up the naming histories for the 90-110 series of USN CLs to see if there was a pattern or an explanation?

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Post #: 49
- 9/9/2001 5:51:00 AM   
Ringbolt

 

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quote:

Originally posted by grumbler:
I am still looking for more examples of the US adoption, for a time, of British style warship names.
I assume we must have used names that the RN was not using so as not to cause confusion? I can see the possibility of a USS Indianapolis type thing in convoy routing: "...now was that HMS Constipation or USS Constipation we sent to Palembang?"
Ringbolt

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- 9/9/2001 6:54:00 AM   
grumbler

 

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I was sort of wondering if the USN ship-naming conventions were not a sort of revenge for the Brits consistently renaming of American vehicle and aircraft (e.g the US "Grant" tanks became the British "Lee" and the "Sheridan" became the "Stuart" - both of which british nbames became more popular than their American counterparts, for at least part of the war :-)). BTW, there was no British ship named "Reprisal" during the war, although there was an "Enterprise" which apparently caused no confision! :-)

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- 9/9/2001 7:02:00 AM   
grumbler

 

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Bck to the original idea of the thread, though: I think the US public was fully prepared to go to war with japan over tha Japanese attacks on British and Dutch possessions in the Far East. The Japanese certainly believed this to be the case, and so rejected a "non-American" solution to their problems. They knew that they would never ave as good a crack at US forces as they would have on December 7th, and so their plans always included an attack on the US. The USS Enterprisewas so close to docking in PH that her cruisers were, in fact, already in port when the attck occured. Big "E" herself was delayed by a refuelling glitch, as has been pointed out. Her aircraft detected the Japanese second wave and Big E ran to the west to stay out of the results. So much for the theory that she was at sea to stop the Japanese!

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- 9/10/2001 8:53:00 PM   
byron13


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I thought the Brits called the Stuart tank "Honey." ???? Ringbolt's right about the reasons for scrapping the Reprisal. After extensive research, I found a copy of "Bob's Scrapped Ships List," and I quote the following: "By war's end, the Ship Naming Council within the Navy Department was in the midst of a sea change. The proud, traditional names used since the Revolutionary War, such as Ranger, Enterprise, and Wasp, fell into disfavor once the Council realized that ships bearing those names had, over the previous two centuries, been sunk in action a disturbingly high percentage of the time. "But creating a new naming convention caused heated debate. The Council, staffed largely by friends of the liberal Roosevelt that would lead the "I'm ok, your ok" generation some twenty years hence, abhorred the unnecessarily aggressive and war-like names bestowed upon British ships such as the Revenge, Conqueror, and Warspite. Clarence Milktoast, a member of the Council was quoted as saying, "We find names like Repulse to be repulsive." Hence, the U.S.S. Reprisal was scrapped in mid-construction because it was deemed that the name stunk. The Council finally settled on happier, feel-good names such as Shanri-la and Bon Homme Richard."

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- 9/11/2001 12:28:00 AM   
Doug Olenick

 

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The Enterprise's screening cruisers had not made port yet. Task Force 2 was about 150 west of PH when the raid took place. However, several SBDs from Scouting Six came into land at Ford Island during the attack. Several were shot down by the Japanese and several by the Navy AAA gunners. I believe the first official US air to air kill is attributed to the rear gunner on one of the planes. Go to http://www.cv6.org/default.htm if you want to see a great site. It has a ton of info on the Big E along with after action reports issued by its various ship/squadron commanders.

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- 9/11/2001 8:33:00 AM   
grumbler

 

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Skeets, It looks as though you are right and HP Wilmot wrong (he notes on p. 133, dealing with Nagumo's dilemma of whether or not to attack despite the fact that the cvs were not in port: "Even as late as the sixth, Nagumo could reasonably hope that because the cruisers normally with the Enterprise had returned to port, at least one of the carriers might arrive in time to be sunk." However, testimony to Congress (extracted atShips not at Pearl Harbor shows that 3 CAs were still with Big E at the time of the attack on PH. BTW, a great site with lots of OOBs is at Battleships, Carriers, and all other warships. Follow the OOB link to find infor on the ships at PH.

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Post #: 55
- 9/12/2001 1:08:00 AM   
TIMJOT

 

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quote:

Originally posted by grumbler:
Bck to the original idea of the thread, though: I think the US public was fully prepared to go to war with japan over tha Japanese attacks on British and Dutch possessions in the Far East. The Japanese certainly believed this to be the case, and so rejected a "non-American" solution to their problems. They knew that they would never ave as good a crack at US forces as they would have on December 7th, and so their plans always included an attack on the US. The USS Enterprisewas so close to docking in PH that her cruisers were, in fact, already in port when the attck occured. Big "E" herself was delayed by a refuelling glitch, as has been pointed out. Her aircraft detected the Japanese second wave and Big E ran to the west to stay out of the results. So much for the theory that she was at sea to stop the Japanese!
I respectfully disagree. Fully prepared? Are you kidding? You totally disregard the large anti-war/isolationalist sentiment in the US at that time. So much so even the sinking of two USN DD's by U-boats were not enough to bring us into a war with Hitler who even the most ardent isolationalist beleived posed a real threat to the US. So for you to say the US public was fully prepared to go to war over some European colonies half way around the world against an ememy that most americans felt posed no direct threat to America is totally off base. Look FDR certainly wanted to get into the war and the military did see Japan as a real threat, but as for the rank file populus, I just dont see that many mothers would be happy to send there sons to defend British rubber plantations and Dutch oil wells in far off places like Kuala Lampur and Tarakan. You are wrong that there were no other plans considered. In fact the IJA plan did just that. It called for by-passing the PI and attacking on the line Malaya, Singapore, DEI and then if need be a follow on attack on the PI . The advantages they argued would bring the maximum amount of forces to bare against the most important targets while avoiding or at least delaying any direct conflict with the US. It was the Navy that insisted that the PI had to be secured. The army was eventually swayed but it was far from unaminous. RE PH , actually both the IJA staff and IJN staff were against it. The army becuase they saw it deverting forces that they felt should be used in support of the attacks in the south. The navy because the saw it as too risky and prefered to stick with there long held plan to lure the USN navy into a decisive battle near the PI. It was only Yamamoto's insistance and threat to resign that they reluctantly agreed to the PH plan. [ September 11, 2001: Message edited by: TIMJOT ] [ September 11, 2001: Message edited by: TIMJOT ]



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- 9/16/2001 9:34:00 PM   
grumbler

 

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quote:

Originally posted by TIMJOT:
I respectfully disagree. Fully prepared? Are you kidding? You totally disregard the large anti-war/isolationalist sentiment in the US at that time.
I don't disregard the antiwar sentiment, I simply say that it had largely died out by Late 1941. The fact that Roosevelt could apply harsh sanctions on Japan (which were predicted to cause war) without significant Senate opposition tells you how much things had changed. The passage of the Two Ocean Naval Act in June 1940 was not the act of a pacifist/isolationist navy. See HP Wilmott (cited above) for more specifics. Feel free to cite the sources of your own info.
quote:


You are wrong that there were no other plans considered. In fact the IJA plan did just that. It called for by-passing the PI and attacking on the line Malaya, Singapore, DEI and then if need be a follow on attack on the PI . The advantages they argued would bring the maximum amount of forces to bare against the most important targets while avoiding or at least delaying any direct conflict with the US. It was the Navy that insisted that the PI had to be secured. The army was eventually swayed but it was far from unaminous.

Feel free to quote your source on this japanese plan. HP Wilmott (who is writing about precisely this issue) notes no such plan. He notes on page 67: "Only after the imposition of the Allied blockade in mid-1941 did the Japanese face up to the twin realities that they had to contemplate a war with Britain, the Netherlands, and the United Staes and that the war would come that year. Until mid-1941 the diffusion of power in the Japanese upper council had lead to the puruit of two divergent objectives. The objective of the dominant army faction was the Asian mainland, specifically China but generally more widely, with the USSR figuring strongly in the army's list of priorities. The interest of the Navy was in Southeast Asia. Though in early 1941 the two serices had agreed to pursue a southwards option, it was not until the trade embargo that the two armed forces studied the implications of the Allied move in detail. As a result of this study, they finalized plans that merged the army's and the navy's strategic considerations and intentions." Page 71-72: "The Japanese problem was to secure the resources of Southeast Asia...though the Japanese objectives were mostly in the Dutch east Indies, Japan was aware that any nove on her part was almost certain to provoke American intervention. The Americans had committed to much prestige in attempting to force the Japanese to back down that it was inconceivable that the Americans would stand aside tamely and leave China and the European colonies to their fate. Thus for Japan there was a powerful incentive to attempt the neutralization of American power at the onset, especially as American forces in the Philippines stood aside Japanese lines of communication between the homeland and the intended area of conquest. Japan did not dare risk leaving the
Philippines unreduced in their rear." Page 75: "Dearly though the Japanese would have wished to strike directly and immediately at the Dutch in order to secure the Indies, they could not trust to luck and hope that no British or American reaction would be forthcoming... In fact, the Japanese never seriously considered the temptation of a strike at the weak center while leaving alert and intact forces on the flanks." So, exactly when and where did the Japanese army publish plans (in 1941, anyway) to leave the US out of the war? When did the debate between the army and navy occur, with the army trying to get their bypass plan accepted, and being forced by the Navy to accept the occupation of the PI? Feel free to quote your sources, as I have done.

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Post #: 57
- 9/17/2001 9:16:00 AM   
Greg Wilmoth

 

Posts: 50
Joined: 2/18/2001
From: Scottsdale, Arizona, USA
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quote:

Originally posted by grumbler:
So, exactly when and where did the Japanese army publish plans (in 1941, anyway) to leave the US out of the war? When did the debate between the army and navy occur, with the army trying to get their bypass plan accepted, and being forced by the Navy to accept the occupation of the PI? Feel free to quote your sources, as I have done.
Allow me to jump in and offer a quote. From David Evans and Mark Peattie's "Kaigun," (US Naval Institute Press, Annapolis MD, c1997): (page 468) "In their plans for the summer of 1941 for operations in Southeast Asia, the army and navy agreed on the overall strategic objective--the acquisition of strategic materials to prepare for a protacted war--but disagreed on the sequence in which the offensive operations were to be carried out. The army held out for attacking Malaya first, then the Netherlands East Indies, and last of all the Philippines. It based its argument on the premise that operations against Malaya would be difficult in any case and that if they were delayed, the British position on the peninsula would become too strong to dislodge. The navy, on the other hand, insisted that the Philippines be attacked first. It reasoned that if Malaya and the East Indies were attacked it would lead to a conflict with the United States in any event. In a conflict with the United States, bypassing the Philippines would become much more difficult, with incalculable consequences for Japanese strategy. Moreover, as the Philippines stood between Japan and the East Indies, American air power in the islands was in a position to threaten Japanese lines of communication between the two regions. This would endanger not only military transport for the invasion of the Indies, which was, after all, the great prize, but also the transportation of its treasure ouse of materials back to Japan. Ultimately the two services compromised their differences by agreeing to open the Southeast Asian offensive with simultaneous attacks on Malaya and the Philippines. . . . Since you live next door to Arlington in Falls Church, have you ever visited the Naval Institute books store at the Naval Academy in Annapolis? They have a wonderful bargin bin with seconds and shopworn books for a fraction of their cover price.


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Post #: 58
- 9/17/2001 10:04:00 PM   
grumbler

 

Posts: 214
Joined: 12/4/2000
From: Falls Church VA USA
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Greg, You are correct that there was debate over the timing of the attacks, but this is not what TIMJOT is arguing. He is arguing that the army wanted to bypass the PI and never attack it at all. I don't think that is what the history supports.

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Post #: 59
- 9/19/2001 10:46:00 PM   
TIMJOT

 

Posts: 1822
Joined: 4/30/2001
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originally posted by Grumbler;
quote:

Feel free to quote your source on this japanese plan. HP Wilmott (who is writing about precisely this issue) notes no such plan. He notes on page 67: "Only after the imposition of the Allied blockade in mid-1941 did the Japanese face up to the twin realities that they had to contemplate a war with Britain, the Netherlands, and the United Staes and that the war would come that year. Until mid-1941 the diffusion of power in the Japanese upper council had lead to the puruit of two divergent objectives. The objective of the dominant army faction was the Asian mainland, specifically China but generally more widely, with the USSR figuring strongly in the army's list of priorities. The interest of the Navy was in Southeast Asia. Though in early 1941 the two serices had agreed to pursue a southwards option, it was not until the trade embargo that the two armed forces studied the implications of the Allied move in detail. As a result of this study, they finalized plans that merged the army's and the navy's strategic considerations and intentions."
Grumbler, I had hoped we could have a nice friendly debate without resorting to this tedious siteing of sources stuff, but if you insist. "THE PACIFIC CAMPAIGN" van der Vat, p.65,pg3;
(Quote)"Force having failed to settle the China Insident, the Army now seriously proposed dividing Japan's already stretched resources by risking the opening of a huge and complex new front. But at least the generals had the wit to limit their designs to French,Dutch,and (only if unaviodable)British possessions, leaving out all American territories such as the Philipines. The admirals disagreed with the generals. The residual Dutch and minimal British maritime presence in the Far East was not enough to justify the Navy's voracious budgetary plans, past, present or future. Conviently, their staff war-games late in 1940 were supervised by Yamamoto himself, and showed that an attack on French and Dutch possessions in the Far East would bring first the British and then the Americans into the ensuing war - and therefore that, instead of the risk of ignoring the US, the much bigger risk of attacking its intersts should be taken from the first! The student of Japanese strategic thinking at this period cannot fail to be struck time and gain by the numbing, mountainous stupidity of the generals and admirals and those who supported them. "The Eagle against the Sun"pg N/A;
(QUOTE) "Now, in the summer and autumn of 1941 , army and navy stategist considered four alternatives (1)to sieze the DEI first, then the Philipines and Malaya;(2)to advance step by step form the Philipines to Borneo, Java, Sumatra, Malaya;(3)TO BEGIN WITH MALAYA AND THEN ADVANCE IN REVERSED ORDER TO THE PHILIPINES, THUS DELAYING AN ATTACK ON AMERICAN TERRITORY;(4)to attack Malaya and the Philipines simultaneously, followed by a quick siezure fo the DEI. The navy prefered option 2,because it offered a secured line of advance while the Army prefered option ,because it siezed the most important objectives first and it delayed an attack on American territory, which intern allowed for the possibility avoiding a war with America if it did not react. They eventually compromised on option 4. I also have read pretty much the same thing in "Yamamoto the Reluctant Admiral" unfortunately I dont have the book in hand so I cant site specifics. That being said, I never said the Japanese didnt have some legitimate reasons for attacking America, just that it was the wrong decision and as demostrated by Van Der Vat that it was a decision skewed by the exageration of the American threat by the Navy to justify their bugetary prominience. Also that there was at least other alternative plans debated.
null [ September 19, 2001: Message edited by: TIMJOT ] [ September 19, 2001: Message edited by: TIMJOT ] [ September 19, 2001: Message edited by: TIMJOT ] [ September 19, 2001: Message edited by: TIMJOT ] [ September 19, 2001: Message edited by: TIMJOT ]



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