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  • No MacArthur in the PI

    What if the US Army didn't bring MacArthur out of retirement to head USAFFE in the Philippines? Instead, they decide to promote and ship George Patton there. How much difference would that change in leadership make?

  • #2
    MacArthur would still have been in command of the Philippine Army. That gave him a six star rank! I think one of the other generals in the CONUS would have been sent over instead of Patton. Ben Lear, Krueger and Stilwell were available.

    Pruitt
    Pruitt, you are truly an expert! Kelt06

    Have you been struck by the jawbone of an ASS lately?

    by Khepesh "This is the logic of Pruitt"

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    • #3
      Any of them would have done a better job than Mac. If only because they would have trained their men instead of strutting around like an Italian opera field marshal.
      Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it whether it exists or not, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedy. -- Ernest Benn

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Pruitt View Post
        MacArthur would still have been in command of the Philippine Army. That gave him a six star rank! I think one of the other generals in the CONUS would have been sent over instead of Patton. Ben Lear, Krueger and Stilwell were available.

        Pruitt
        Not if the US Army didn't pull him out of retirement and offer him the job. Sure, I just used Patton but another general can be substituted. If the War Department doesn't ask MacArthur to come out of retirement and take the job, it goes to somebody else. MacArthur has little or no say in that.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Tsar View Post
          Any of them would have done a better job than Mac. If only because they would have trained their men instead of strutting around like an Italian opera field marshal.
          Very true.

          Although given the time frame and logistics issues in place, leadership could not save the day.

          However, an aggressive motivator and trainer such as Patton would have gotten a lot more out of the PI forces that Bugout Doug did.

          The IJA would have had a rougher time. And I doubt so much of the air power would have been lined up on the fields 24 hours after Pearl.
          Any man can hold his place when the bands play and women throw flowers; it is when the enemy presses close and metal shears through the ranks that one can acertain which are soldiers, and which are not.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Arnold J Rimmer View Post
            Very true.

            Although given the time frame and logistics issues in place, leadership could not save the day.

            However, an aggressive motivator and trainer such as Patton would have gotten a lot more out of the PI forces that Bugout Doug did.

            The IJA would have had a rougher time. And I doubt so much of the air power would have been lined up on the fields 24 hours after Pearl.
            The IJA almost failed in their attempt to take the PI. They had to heavily reinforce their initial invasion forces to make up for the losses they had suffered. Had the landings been more forcefully opposed and the USAAC done better in the air, the Japanese likely would have suffered a loss or at best a stalemate that drained their resources badly.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by T. A. Gardner View Post
              The IJA almost failed in their attempt to take the PI. They had to heavily reinforce their initial invasion forces to make up for the losses they had suffered. Had the landings been more forcefully opposed and the USAAC done better in the air, the Japanese likely would have suffered a loss or at best a stalemate that drained their resources badly.
              Well, with control of the sea, the outcome was inevitable. In a pure land conflict you're right.
              Any man can hold his place when the bands play and women throw flowers; it is when the enemy presses close and metal shears through the ranks that one can acertain which are soldiers, and which are not.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Arnold J Rimmer View Post
                Very true.

                Although given the time frame and logistics issues in place, leadership could not save the day.

                However, an aggressive motivator and trainer such as Patton would have gotten a lot more out of the PI forces that Bugout Doug did.

                The IJA would have had a rougher time. And I doubt so much of the air power would have been lined up on the fields 24 hours after Pearl.
                hell patton might of had them over nearest piece of Japanese real estate

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Arnold J Rimmer View Post
                  Well, with control of the sea, the outcome was inevitable. In a pure land conflict you're right.
                  If Japan is defeated on land that means the loss of an entire army (corps sized unit in US equivalents). It would be hard for them to come up with a second equal or larger sized unit, the necessary shipping, and try again.

                  The Philippines has sufficient economic capacity to supply the basic needs of US and Philippine forces locally. What they would lack are resources like avgas and other specialized ones necessary for a continuation of military offensive operations.
                  Some of this could be supplied even with the Japanese blockading the islands. Certainly aircraft reinforcements could be flown in.
                  USN stocks of torpedoes and ammunition along with possession of Manila Bay means US subs can operate more efficiently in the South China Sea.

                  The US had the potential forces in the Philippines to win or at least stalemate the Japanese indefinitely. It was largely MacArthur's fault that his command was as inept as it was in carrying out the defense. For example, with out Sutherland as CoS, Brereton commanding the USAAC would have performed much better than he did. It was largely Sutherland's interference with air force operations and methods that ham strung them and led to their defeat.

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                  • #10
                    Patton in the Pacific would have been a waste - born armour commander. Another general might have been more able tactically, but given the importance of the navy would it have made a big difference? My questions wouldn't be so much about tactics & strategy, but about politics of various sorts. Would other generals have been as good at lobbying & pressuring Washington for resources in what was the secondary theatre & would someone else have had better or worse relations with the navy?

                    I don't know the answer to either, but I get the distinct impression that MacArthur was about the best guy around at the former - pressuring the US Government for resources. He certainly formed a very public & successful partnership with Australian PM Curtin to that end. Curtin & senior Australian Generals were prepared to deal with Mac failings because he gave them a greater voice in Washington than they felt they would otherwise have had.
                    Human beings are the only creatures on Earth that claim a god and the only living thing that behaves like it hasn't got one - Hunter S. Thompson

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                    • #11
                      Patton would have done more for training.

                      And for making sure that the Philippine Army actually had guns.

                      US had lots of WWI (and earlier) surplus that would have just fine for them.

                      Dugout Doug, he was more interested in having a huge army.

                      That they had little training or even arms, was secondary.

                      Would be an interesting experiment, Patton on the defence

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                      • #12
                        MacArthur also used Australian troops to do the dirty clean up work in the Solomons, New Guinea and then sent them to Borneo. He did not take any with him to the Philippines. If he liked the Australians so much, why didn't he send some American troops to help them out? You would have thought he would have released their names to the press instead of calling them "Allies".

                        FDR had his eye on him because Douglas was the darling of certain Republicans back home. If Douglas was back home training troops, no telling what he would have cooked up with these people.

                        Pruitt
                        Pruitt, you are truly an expert! Kelt06

                        Have you been struck by the jawbone of an ASS lately?

                        by Khepesh "This is the logic of Pruitt"

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Marathag View Post
                          Patton would have done more for training.

                          And for making sure that the Philippine Army actually had guns.

                          US had lots of WWI (and earlier) surplus that would have just fine for them.

                          Would be an interesting experiment, Patton on the defence
                          World War I era rifles and machine guns would be on par with much of what the Japanese had. World War I ear artillery would be fairly on par, though the Japanese did have a lot of light very maneuverable light artillery such as their type 92 70mm gun.

                          Patton might take a very aggressive defensive stance with frequent counter attacks and spoiling attacks to keep the Japanese off balance.
                          "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it" Beatrice Evelyn Hall
                          Updated for the 21st century... except if you are criticizing islam, that scares the $hii+e out of me!

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Marathag View Post
                            Patton would have done more for training.

                            And for making sure that the Philippine Army actually had guns.

                            US had lots of WWI (and earlier) surplus that would have just fine for them.

                            Dugout Doug, he was more interested in having a huge army.

                            That they had little training or even arms, was secondary.

                            Would be an interesting experiment, Patton on the defence
                            Actually the Philippines paid for all the military aid they were given. MACARTHUR gave them a plan to create a defense of the Philippines and much of it was spent building air strips on Luzon which the Japanese used! MacArthur would have still been there to make sure the money was spent his way. The training of conscripts in the Philippine Army had only been going for a year or so. Many were still called up with no training.

                            The Philippine Scouts were supposedly full of long term trained Regulars, but I read Lt. Ramsey's book and he says his Troop was almost all new recruits! The 26th Cavalry (PS) was supposed to be the most elite formation in the PI.

                            There was no such large stockpile of Field Artillery in the US for the Philippines to buy. The 75mm Field Piece was the main gun used in the PI. There were some 155 pieces, but they were in the American Philippine Division. The Army did send a Field Artillery Regiment as reinforcements, but they ended up in Australia. They were sent with their old 75 Field Pieces. Once in Australia one Battalion was sent to Java and the other remained in North Australia until re-armed with 105 Howitzers.

                            The US Army had been activating a number of new divisions and had activated the National Guard. We were actually short on Artillery. The two divisions on Hawaii were also still armed with 75's. A large number of 75's had been mounted on Halftracks as well. They were called Tank Destroyers but on Luzon they were used as SP Artillery. We even issued Enfield 1917's to units that were considered not very important. The Philippines bought a large number of Enfield 1917's as well. No matter that most Filippinos had trouble taking the 30'06 recoil.

                            Pruitt
                            Pruitt, you are truly an expert! Kelt06

                            Have you been struck by the jawbone of an ASS lately?

                            by Khepesh "This is the logic of Pruitt"

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Here we have MacArthur, at most, in charge of the Philippine Army with another US general appointed in charge of US forces in the Philippines.
                              In this case I can see the US general asking for, and getting, a national guard division prior to the war. MacArthur turned this down.
                              A full US national guard division (triangular) and a full Philippine Division (triangular) with two M3 light battalions and two TD battalions in support would have been a formidable force to overcome.

                              An aggressive USAAC with full use of the radar available, not hamstrung by MacArthur's martinet Chief of Staff, Sutherland, would have made the Japanese air campaign far more difficult too.

                              I could even see MacArthur being more aggressive towards FDR in supplying arms to the Philippine Army as he has no control over US forces and doesn't want his Philippine ones to look bad.

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