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  • #31
    Originally posted by Full Monty View Post
    I know they lost pilots, but not the majority of the aircrew (which was what I thought you were implying).


    Hmmmmm, Lexington, Yorktown and Wasp all took their time to sink. But I think you're exaggerating a little.
    When did the Lexington sink, I thought it made it through the war? This article on my Grandfathers brother has been my research focus recently....


    "This life..., you know, "the life." Youíre not gonna get any medals, kid. This is not a hero business; you donít shoot people from a mile a way. You gotta stand right next to them... blow their heads off."

    BoRG

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    • #32
      Originally posted by P.V. Mann III View Post
      When did the Lexington sink, I thought it made it through the war? This article on my Grandfathers brother has been my research focus recently....



      Coral Sea!

      P.V.!!!!!Your Google broken

      HP
      "Ask not what your country can do for you"

      Left wing, Right Wing same bird that they are killing.

      youíre entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.

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      • #33
        USS Lexington & USS Saratoga were laid down as Battle Cruisers. They were converted in construction to Aircraft Carriers, PV. This, because of their prohibition under the Washington Naval Treaties. They became Americas 2nd & 3rd carriers. They were very large as a result of their battle cruiser hulls.

        Your reli served on the Essex class CV16. Lady Lex is now a museum ship anchored at Corpus.

        No Essex Carriers were lost, though USS Franklin came relatively close. She survived & steamed home to New York under her own steam.


        Last edited by Admiral; 01 Jul 07, 05:01.
        On the Plains of Hesitation lie the blackened bones of countless millions who, at the dawn of victory, sat down to rest-and resting... died. Adlai E. Stevenson

        ACG History Today

        BoRG

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        • #34
          Full Monty

          Full Monty, please see last reply to your last post.

          You can guess who sent me that Australian link as proof.
          and man does it seem to prove their point.

          Agree with you completely about the brown vs black shoes till then.

          Comment


          • #35
            Originally posted by Dr What View Post
            Very true, with some excellent damage control and luck, Lexington lost fewer men than expected.
            Wasp rescued 90% I think?
            But while Lexington was hit in a distant battle where the far smaller-than-Midway Japanese fleet withdrew, and Wasp was sunk by a lone submarine (if i recall correctly?),
            neither casualty rates reflect the circumstances that would be faced had they been sunk in such a total Japanese victory at Midway as being considered here.

            The Yorktown is the only one that even comes close to reflecting the circumstances, having actually been there and sunk by Japanese planes, but in a victorious cause.
            Even in victory the Yorktown suffered horrendously just in the aerial engagements, not including on-board casualties.

            "Out of 128 pilots and crew who were in the torpedo planes that day, 29 survived, 99 died. And not one torpedo exploded against the hull of a Japanese ship." The Unknown Story of Midway, Kernan(who used the Shattered Sword as one of sources btw)

            Now if that is in victory, you have to expect even higher in defeat.Every single engagement between Japanese and American planes that day resulted in such lop-sided events with the Wildcats either refusing to engage the Zeros or disengaging after losing 1 of their number even during cover for attack runs.
            Thanks for clarifying that. I'd assumed that you meant aircrew who were still onboard, or returning to, the Carriers. With that in mind, I'd agree that casualties amongst pilots and crew would probably have been higher, but maybe not appreciably so. Depending on when the Japanese strikes hit the US fleet there's every possibility that US aircraft would fly fewer sorties than they did historically resulting in less casualties being incurred in the air. There are a LOT of variables in this,

            I don't mean to make all Japanese out to be monsters, but first, in the Repulse and PoW, those were sunk by land-based torpedo planes, not a Japanese fleet who'd claim control of the sea area if not to chase down survivors, but secure the seas against further threats to the invasion forces.

            Upon destruction of the carriers, I do not believe the Japanese would 'call it a day'. I am pretty sure, like we did, they would continue to advance on and through(as we all do when we play naval sims ourselves) and keep attacking cruisers and destroyers even submarines even on rescue missions. Yes, I definately do believe that. They would want to destroy every American cruiser and destroyer even submarine that popped up once the carriers were downed. We did no less when we sunk their carriers.
            Hmmmm, I'm not so sure. The Japanese had a certain code of honour regarding defeated enemies. Additionally, there's the time issue should the Japanese wish to harry the retreating US forces. Finally, there was the taking of Midway Atoll itself to add in to the equation. Some vessels (the submarines I would imagine) would certainly be sent to screen the US remnants but that would be all. The attack on Pearl Harbour is an interesting case to take into consideration since the Japanese had an opportunity to deny its use as a base for the Pacific Fleet for many months but chose not to.

            My apologies if I came across a little condescending. You are obviously well-read and interested in the topic. Just disagree even where not mis-understandings.
            No offence taken. I'm used to the way that the written word can't carry the subtleties of speech even though we write in a conversational style.

            I think our major misunderstanding so far is trying to equate what a drawn out battle would do compared to the unbelievably lucky stroke we had.
            How do you mean 'drawn out'? Carrier battles were invariably quite short affairs once each fleet had spotted the other. Could you clarify?


            Ah hah! lol
            I think I might!.

            I was going to try to dig out my Macksey and Hughes-Wilson books that use quotes from Ultra and post-war Japanese Intelligence files, but how about this instead?

            This webpage links you to Australian historians actual assessments here.

            http://www.users.bigpond.com/battlef...ustinvade.html
            Nice site, thanks for the link. Did you read the Stanley article? It does raise some interesting questions and I have to say that I don't find the rebuttal on the site you linked to wholly convincing.

            As for the battleship vs carrier, you are again perfectly correct, spot on. The 'black shoes' (air power) were still considered second fiddle to the 'brown shoes' (big gun). Yet as far as the Pacific was concerned, Pearl and Midway were what was needed for leaders like Spruance and Fletcher to take centre stage in influence. (I think you'll agree?).

            Regardless of who wiped out whose carrier force at Midway, the resulting perception of surface power now at the mercy of air power would only be a greater, not lesser, revelation and addition to immediate post-Midway panic.
            Japan tried to hide her disaster, America simply wouldn't be able to hide that kind of disaster.
            I'm not sure that Midway necessarily leads to that change of perception (although it's another step in that direction) simply because it was almost exclusively a Carrier battle. It's only 1944 where we start getting into the all-arms battles for the islands under Japanese control that the true worth of the Carrier becomes clear for all to see.

            But such a major defeat discussed here, couldn't help but make the Allied perception of the value of aircraft carriers over battleships even more urgent than had we won.
            Well yes, of course. But largely in the minds of military men rather than John and Jane Doe.


            Well that's only because we won at Midway, not lost.
            Of course we'd consider the loss of battleships till that time more important than carriers, WE hadn't lost that many carriers yet.
            It's only after you suffer the same injury that you fully appreciate it's importance.
            Well I base that conclusion on the loss of British Carriers compared to the loss of British Battleships. The Carriers were a sad loss, the battleships a national calamity!!

            The Quarter-back lying winded on his back with a 240lb line-backer stomping off with arms raised is at least as cognicent of the value of the blitz than the blitzer is.
            Believe me. I've been on both sides of that ball lol.
            It's fortunate that I'm familiar with Gridiron (whether CFL or NFL) and so 'get' the analogy.

            Believe me guys, I was in the same mind-frame as you about this till recently. If I came across condescending, I didn't mean to sorry, since having to work and live overseas so much, I've been embarassed to find out how egotistical and arrogant my own view of history has been and I thought I was well read.
            I thought I was reasonably well read too (BA, MA etc.) when I started posting here. Whooops!!

            So please include me in any insults I seem to imply.
            Well thank you, but I much prefer crafting my own.
            Last edited by Full Monty; 01 Jul 07, 10:32.
            Signing out.

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            • #36
              Originally posted by Full Monty View Post
              Thanks for clarifying that. I'd assumed that you meant aircrew who were still onboard, or returning to, the Carriers. With that in mind, I'd agree that casualties amongst pilots and crew would probably have been higher, but maybe not appreciably so. Depending on when the Japanese strikes hit the US fleet there's every possibility that US aircraft would fly fewer sorties than they did historically resulting in less casualties being incurred in the air. There are a LOT of variables in this,
              Ironically, given that the Americans were getting creamed in the Midway air war, according to Kernan's "The Unknown Battle of Miday" and that "Miracle at Midway", that we might prefer to have our air crews get sunk with their carriers instead of engaged in the air.

              As silly as that may sound, I also go along with the belief that the Americans were actually lucky the way the Pearl Harbour attack was planned out. I believe had the US fleet, carriers included, gone out that day to engage the Japanese, it would've been a far greater disaster as the American losses would've been permanent(not raised again) and crews couldn't just swim to shore so easily.

              I doubt anyone officially wrote down a contingency plan for what happened to the Hood(unbelievably unlucky hit) or the Bismark rudder(similar but not quite as bad as Hood) would happen either.

              Originally posted by Full Monty View Post
              Hmmmm, I'm not so sure. The Japanese had a certain code of honour regarding defeated enemies. Additionally, there's the time issue should the Japanese wish to harry the retreating US forces. Finally, there was the taking of Midway Atoll itself to add in to the equation. Some vessels (the submarines I would imagine) would certainly be sent to screen the US remnants but that would be all. The attack on Pearl Harbour is an interesting case to take into consideration since the Japanese had an opportunity to deny its use as a base for the Pacific Fleet for many months but chose not to.
              :
              You know when I was a boy I was raised on stories how the Japanese had actually murdered some relatives. So when I went into my studies of history, I had a most definate predisposition and bias on what I was and wasn't going to take as historical fact.

              That being said, the more I studied, the more went on foreign student exchange programs, worked and lived in other countries, the more I learnt different. I didn't know war-crimes were one-sided. Nor that the Japanese not only charged and convicted but even executed even officers responsible for Nanking and other war crimes. That was never in any of my history books.

              I also know that not all Japanese pilots shot everything in a parachute, and that we had our people even white vs white in Europe who did the same thing. I do know that at Midway some captured Americans pilots and seamen were executed before even getting back to Japan. On the other hand, I know some were treated well.

              I think Clint Eastwood's movie "Letters from Iwo Jima" was the first movie I didn't think was worth going to see in a movie theatre, that upon watching on video, agreed with our friends that it is a 'must have' for our dvd collections. What Tom Hanks got hate mail for portraying our boys shooting surrendering enemy soldiers in "Saving Private Ryan" and the fantastic series "Band of Brothers", some of my other relatives admitted went on on our side. Even worse before they died.

              STILL...and I don't say this just because when we play naval simulations we do it all the time to eachother, I believe the Japanese fleet and carriers and submarines would do everything they could to not only finish off the remainder of the now air-defenseless surface fleet, not only prevent us from increasing the number of experienced and trained people to 'fight another day'.
              I'm pretty sure I recall a Japanese submarine sinking a destroyer trying to evacuate a sinking American carrier?
              To be fair, I also know we did the same thing like an air attack on a German Uboat towing Allied POWs to the coast of Spain I think.
              But ok, if you think they would be satisfied with the carriers and leave the rest alone, it's a possibility. A nice thought from our point of view too to be sure.

              Originally posted by Full Monty View Post
              How do you mean 'drawn out'? Carrier battles were invariably quite short affairs once each fleet had spotted the other. Could you clarify?
              :
              Maybe not 'time' so much, as expanse of the battle, but then also time.
              Historically the Hiryu survived to the next day, so did the Yorktown for that matter, so the battle as it was did technically go beyond just that unbelievably lucky strike. But if the Hiryu alone could last longer and still sting back outnumbered 3 to 1 taking the Yorktown down with her, then imagine what the 4 Soryu, especially Kaga and Akagi could have done.

              9/10 times, engagements between the Hood and the Bismark would be alot more 'drawn out' than it was historically.

              Though I will admit, the IJN carrier planes were absolutely surviving the aerial aspect of the battle more than the USN carrier planes. So I'll admit that it wouldn't be long before it was only they who had operational carrier attack capabilities and as in the vast majority of Midway computer games we play, as the US, we'd have to hope to flee. The problem being, eventhough the Yorktown? was in a separate Tf from the Enterprise and Hornet, they had such a significant range advantage on us, when we play, and the US loses, the Japanese player usually chases me down(damage slows my carriers) all the way to Hawaii if need be.

              But no, I don't mean drawn out like a week of battles, just more expansive, maybe even more than 2 days, as you say, depending on what happens.

              Originally posted by Full Monty View Post
              Nice site, thanks for the link. Did you read the Stanley article? It does raise some interesting questions and I have to say that I don't find the rebuttal on the site you linked to wholly convincing.
              :
              Yes I did, and I can see both sides. Though, as any guy here who's been married can attest to, sometimes how she 'feels' or 'perceives' things, is, in the end, more important than how 'reasonable' it seems to you at the time.


              Someone once lent me a book that he couldn't get published on why the French shouldn't have surrendered in 1940. He did an excellent job in showing, in hindsight of course with intel they didn't know then, how the Germans were in fact far more over-stretched, and French far more able to rebound, than we thought.

              My simplest analogy would be the story of Yamashita actually going into the meeting with Percival at Singapore expecting the British to demand his submission and withdrawal. I think someone said one of the things he loved about America was Poker, and man did that come back to bite us. We all know now the Japanese bluffed their victory at Singapore, but at the time, the British didn't.

              Get my point? or does your wife always accept your logic knows best?

              Disclaimer: I am making a joke. I am not ridiculing the Australian position nor saying that it is only the wife who will make a decision against the husband's perceived better judgement. It goes both ways I'm sure I'm just stating a very rare happenstance from my perspective indeed .

              Originally posted by Full Monty View Post
              I'm not sure that Midway necessarily leads to that change of perception (although it's another step in that direction) simply because it was almost exclusively a Carrier battle. It's only 1944 where we start getting into the all-arms battles for the islands under Japanese control that the true worth of the Carrier becomes clear for all to see.

              Well yes, of course. But largely in the minds of military men rather than John and Jane Doe.
              :
              Totally agreed.
              Like you, I couldn't see why the Australian 'leadership' would be 'ahead of the curve' in realizing the importance of aircraft carriers from most.

              My new computer doesn't have them, but my Australian friends once showed me webpages of Australian newspaper headlines of the period. More than American papers, our papers heralded the success of the carrier raid on Taranto. The carrier support in the victory over the Italian battlefleet in the East Mediterranean. The carrier role in the sinking of the Bismark. Then, most important to Australia, was they blamed Brit Adm Phillips for the surrender of Singapore and Australia's worst military humiliation and disaster since Gallipoli, the 'unconditional surrender' of 14,000 of their men at Singapore they linked to Phillip's refusal to transfer another available Indian Ocean aircraft carrier to support the PoW and Repulse in Force Zed when the assigned Indomitable was unable to comply. To them, it was a direct link.
              a) no carrier support as already ordered led to destruction of Force Zed
              b) destruction of Force Zed had direct impact on surrender of Singapore
              c) surrender of Singapore not only led to greatest Australian military humiliation in recent memory, but as I already quoted the Australian PM, 'started the Battle for Australia'.

              They also claim that MacArthur (I'm not that well read on the subject) was vehemetely against the Midway operation wanting the carriers reserved for supporting he and the Australians defending Papua New Guinea and the Solomons. They claim that even by then, MacArthur, who was the biggest American wig in Australia at the time, blamed the lack of Allied carrier support for their problems vs the Japanese on the land.

              So that's their claim as to why the Australians were 'ahead of the curve' in appreciation of aircraft carriers over battleships.

              I think they also felt aircraft carriers were vital to keeping their Australian troops in the Mediterranean supplied too. Even if only convoy escort like the Ark Royal or Malta drop offs like the Wasp?

              That's their claim anyways.

              I guess it's possible. I wasn't a 'brit' or 'aussie' back then. It does seem that the Americans failed to appreciate the lesson the British were already appreciating in the value of aircraft carriers over battleships at Taranto for instance. So it is possible one nation could have different views on what is and what isn't so important in warfare even if allied.

              Originally posted by Full Monty View Post
              Well I base that conclusion on the loss of British Carriers compared to the loss of British Battleships. The Carriers were a sad loss, the battleships a national calamity!!
              Absolutely. The Hood was maybe more important to the British ego than Pearl Harbour was to the Americans. Then the Bismark for Germany. The Japanese stupidly treated the Yamato like a national treasure rather than use her as she should have been. I believe Lippman or Lundsdorff? wrote that Lee felt had the Yamato been committed he'd have lost the campaign. When the Eagle? was caught by the Scharnhorst and sunk, or this or that carrier sunk actually hunting for Uboats. I agree with you completely.

              But Australia had no battleships, she had a couple of modern cruisers I think, but she didn't quite have that same tie to the dreadnought the British did I guess. Australia's 'immediate' naval ego was tied to the loss of 2 dreadnoughts 'supposedly' because of the absence of an aircraft carrier.

              So they say. I can see that.

              Originally posted by Full Monty View Post
              It's fortunate that I'm familiar with Gridiron (whether CFL or NFL) and so 'get' the analogy.
              :
              Yeah, sorry about that. If I'm not drinking or drunk after work when typing here for 'relaxation'(wife is away so I have alot of spare time I'm half watching TV and CFL football season has started up and I used to play and coach. I should probably use more international analogies like Rugby.

              Where I would add "while the enemy offers you a hand up from a chin butt tackle while he digs his cleats into shins."

              Originally posted by Full Monty View Post
              I thought I was reasonably well read too (BA, MA etc.) when I started posting here. Whooops!!
              :
              You and me both. But I think I'd rather converse with someone, who like me, is willing to accept not only that the victors do write the history books, but that I am willing to change my mind(obviously given my background) even if it isn't supportive of my ego or popular where I live.

              Been great discussing with you so far.

              Some seem to join forums to tell people how great their own nation or arm of the military etc are.
              Spout how much information they've had time to commit to rote memory.

              I hope I like to come here to learn stuff too. I find it more exciting to have my mind changed on something than just ditto out 'yeah, ain't we great?'.

              Just 2 years ago, I believed the exact opposite of what I'm playing devil's advocate for here in this post.

              Enjoyed discussing with you so far Monty.
              One of wife's favourite movies is 'full monty' lol.
              I think we even have the sound-track.

              Cheers Monty.

              Comment


              • #37
                Originally posted by tsar View Post
                I love this argument. The U.S. should have pursed a single thrust strategy instead of a dual one. And of course the one that should have been pursued is always dugout Dougís.
                The problem with this is that the U.S. had the resources to pursue a dual thrust while Japan didnít have the resources to defend against it. So instead of being able to put everything into stopping just the one thrust that some people advocate they had to split their already insufficient forces into stopping multiple thrust. Thus weakening the number of ships, men and aircraft that any of them had to face.

                Also nothing stopped the U.S. from shifting forces around to assist one group or the other as needed.
                I always thought that if there were to be only one thrust, it shouldn't be the one directed at the Philippines. By 1944, the USN submarines were already cutting the essential supply line of war material from Southeast Asia by sinking merchant ships. By late 1944, this would become essentially a strangle hold.

                On the other hand, the central Pacific thrust was absolutely necessary to pierce the Japanese defensive line and push towards Japan itself. It was far more manpower efficient to take small island atolls than the huge land masses of the Philippines.

                With the USN dominating the Pacific, Jap troops on the Philippines would be bottled up anyway, and contribute little to the final fighting.

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                • #38
                  I'm snipping most of this because where we differ is in our interpretations and they are not debatable.

                  Originally posted by Dr What View Post
                  But ok, if you think they would be satisfied with the carriers and leave the rest alone, it's a possibility. A nice thought from our point of view too to be sure.
                  Just to clarify my thoughts on this, the Japanese had a set of objectives that they wished to achieve. With the US Carriers sunk their primary consideration would be the occupation of Midway itself. They might refuel and rearm a further wave of aircraft to harry the Americans but with them in full retreat and the ever present danger of submarines the Japanese surface fleet would be unlikely to give chase. Their code of honour would be reinforced by pragmatism.

                  Get my point? or does your wife always accept your logic knows best?
                  I am blessedly without such an appendage.

                  Enjoyed discussing with you so far Monty.
                  One of wife's favourite movies is 'full monty' lol.
                  I think we even have the sound-track.

                  Cheers Monty.
                  Cheers to you too

                  As an aside, I don't know if you are aware that had WW1 continued into 1919 the British were planning on launching a carrier strike on the German High Seas Fleet in its home port! (Kiel or Wilhelmshaven, I'm not sure off the top of my head ). Now there's a 'what if?'
                  Signing out.

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                  • #39
                    Originally posted by Dr What View Post
                    That being said, the more I studied, the more went on foreign student exchange programs, worked and lived in other countries, the more I learnt different. I didn't know war-crimes were one-sided. Nor that the Japanese not only charged and convicted but even executed even officers responsible for Nanking and other war crimes. That was never in any of my history books.
                    Apparently it didn't make it into Ms Chang's either. The book the I consider the authoritative history of the Rape of Nanking.

                    Originally posted by Dr What View Post
                    I'm pretty sure I recall a Japanese submarine sinking a destroyer trying to evacuate a sinking American carrier?
                    The Hamman was tied up along side providing power to the damage control parties that were going a long way toward saving Yorktown. Hamman just happen to be in the way when the sub fired on Yorktown. The carrier was the main target the destroyer was just an extra silhouette on the coning tower.
                    Last edited by Tsar; 03 Jul 07, 12:58.
                    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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                    • #40
                      Originally posted by Full Monty View Post
                      As an aside, I don't know if you are aware that had WW1 continued into 1919 the British were planning on launching a carrier strike on the German High Seas Fleet in its home port! (Kiel or Wilhelmshaven, I'm not sure off the top of my head ). Now there's a 'what if?'
                      yes, (and both were bases), the Admiralty had that plan.

                      now 1919 planes would not have done much damage (but then there was also little effective AA then) but it would have shown to the Germans that a Fleet in harbour (what the Kaiser thought was his bragaining chip) was also vulnerable and thus obsolete.
                      "Freedom cannot exist without discipline, self-discipline, and rights cannot exist without duties. Those who do not observe their duties do not deserve their rights."--Oriana Fallaci

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                      • #41
                        Originally posted by Full Monty View Post
                        As an aside, I don't know if you are aware that had WW1 continued into 1919 the British were planning on launching a carrier strike on the German High Seas Fleet in its home port! (Kiel or Wilhelmshaven, I'm not sure off the top of my head ). Now there's a 'what if?'
                        What sort of arms were the Brtis to use? Torpedos even? What should we read for more on this plan?

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          Originally posted by Carl Schwamberg View Post
                          What sort of arms were the Brtis to use? Torpedos even? What should we read for more on this plan?
                          Carl, I wish I could help you but in truth, as the fact that I wasn't sure which base the raid was going to be launched at shows, I only know that a plan was hatched and little more.
                          Signing out.

                          Comment


                          • #43
                            Originally posted by Carl Schwamberg View Post
                            What sort of arms were the Brtis to use? Torpedos even? What should we read for more on this plan?

                            bombs and torpedoes (but bombs would be low yield - and thus very ineffective and torpedoes would probably have failed due to the nettings in Wilhelmshaven harbor, etc.)

                            I never seen an article on this online, the story of the planning of these operations for 1919 I read in a book about british ww1 planned carriers.
                            "Freedom cannot exist without discipline, self-discipline, and rights cannot exist without duties. Those who do not observe their duties do not deserve their rights."--Oriana Fallaci

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