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  1. Right, but the IJN bombed it because it was a naval base supporting USN operations in the area where the IJN was conducting landing operations. The same pattern happened again at Port Darwin and Ceylon - the IJN did attack port infrastructure if operations were ongoing and the port in question posed a threat to Japanese invasion transports or shipping. At Pearl Harbor, there were no major Japanese operations anywhere near Oahu - Wake was the closest and it was a minor invasion.
  2. Part of the Pearl Harbor attack plan was a large deployment of 6th Fleet assets in the Hawaiian Islands, to the tune of 21 submarines prowling the waters around Oahu. The results of this offensive were paltry and highly disappointing to Combined Fleet - one fleet oiler sunk, one aircraft carrier damaged. They were paying attention to US logistics and they were heavily deployed in waters well trafficked by US warships and supply vessels. But the results were not good. The US submarine fleet in 1942 also made a poor return on investment. The response was in part to purge pre-war officers of command and hand boats to aggressive officers. Did the IJN have the same problem with pre-war submarine officers and tactics? Had the German U-boat arm somehow managed to deploy 21 boats to Oahu in December 1941, I would bet from the results of Drumbeat that the results would have been a far higher return on investment.
  3. Cavite Naval Station on Luzon was destroyed on December 10th in what was clearly a high-priority raid. At Pearl Harbor, no such targeting. The difference between the two was that the Japanese were landing on Luzon and Cavite was the most important local USN base, so bombing it would disrupt US Navy operations, (in particular, submarine operations). Whereas at Pearl Harbor, the IJN had no intention of conducting major fleet operations in those waters, so not targeting naval facilities there would have no impact on IJN operations . The mission was to prevent the US Navy from interfering in the Southern Drive, so the only possibility of the tanks being targeted might be if Nagumo got to Hawaii and the US fleet was absent from Pearl Harbor.
  4. Spotting aircraft were SOP for IJN battleship doctrine, so their use during the bombardment would be routine. In reading a couple sources, the other doctrinal innovation that was adapted before the attack was the range of 19,000 yards for the bombardment. This was because tests at Truk had determined that a 25 degree impact angle was optimal for shell effectiveness.
  5. The Unionists want Northern Ireland treated like part of the UK I think, so if they go 'postal', you mean just political protests and such?
  6. The question is not whether the US is willing to enter into a shooting war, but who will win that war if it occurs. We will know when China has concluded they will win because that's when they will fight. Therefore as you said upthread, probably no change to the status quo ante in the next 10 years.
  7. I see the dispute is about Northern Ireland and the land border, but what is the problem exactly?
  8. Seems to me that in 1950 the Chinese in Korea were concerned about the US. But, about Britain in 1950, pretty much not at all.
  9. Zimm's book is useful but needed a good editor. Wemeth's Beyond Pearl Harbor has a number of first hand accounts of B5N2 crewmembers that attacked Pearl Harbor, (both in the torpedo and level bombing roles). Tagaya's Aichi 99 Kanbaku book has gobs of detail on the D3A1 attack at Pearl.
  10. The 5 which were shot down being from Kaga, and all at the tail end of the 24, as I just said. Some of the Hiryu and Soryu crews aborted their runs from the north because their assigned targets, (the carriers) were not on Carrier Row. They did not 'blunder' into the southern stream, they deliberately came around to attack Battleship Row. Yes, were the guns firing at the beginning of the torpedo attack as they were at the end, then the 'line ahead' attack method could easily see very heavy losses amongst the torpedo carrying aircraft.
  11. I've read articles here and there over the years. From memory, before the order was given to bombard Henderson Field I don't think the IJN had paid that much attention to such a mission, and I doubt they had any doctrine for it. But the order was given and what the IJN did possess was superbly trained crews and artillery experts with well equipped forces. These officers then proceeded to create a doctrine for the bombardment. At Truk they tested AP shells against steel matting to see how well these would rip up the runway, (the Japanese falsely believed that Henderson had steel matting or concrete for the runways). They also concluded that the Type III Incendiary shells would be highly effective against parked aircraft and gasoline dumps, especially in conjunction with HE. Because it would be done at night from long range, (I recall either 21,000 or 29,000 yards firing range depending on source), the IJN concluded that special support would be required, in the form of an observation post, observation aircraft, and a series of carefully placed lights on shore to allow the battleships to calculate the range and bearing to target. The first test of this doctrine invented on the fly went quite well, except that the AP (the majority of ammunition fired) was not effective because the target was soft mud, not what they hoped it would be. Most of the damage was achieved with the Type III incendiary submunitions working in conjunction with the HE.
  12. Hiei and Kirishima were lost in Iron Bottom Sound attempting shore bombardment missions. The US Navy fought two battles to prevent these bombardments from occurring after the experience of the first one. In terms of IJN battleship doctrine, my recollection is that there was a distinction drawn between the employment of the battlecruisers and the battleships. The battleships were to be held in reserve for the decisive naval clash, which would entail a final battle between the USN and IJN battle lines. The four battlecruisers had a cross-over role. Not only would they join the battle line for the decisive clash, but before that they would also participate in the preliminary attritional actions of the lighter forces, (2nd and 3rd Fleet) against the enemy fleet. When Yamamoto orders the 3rd Bat Division to do the bombardment of Henderson, of all the battleships in the IJN, they'd be the ones naturally given the task. (When Yamamoto threatened to use Yamato if 3rd BAT balked at the task, that would have been non-doctrinal.
  13. You'd asked why I thought the loss of Hiei and Kirishima more productive than the use/loss of other IJN battleships. They were lost while attempting to bombard Henderson Field, a switch in tactics (not 'BB doctrine') that put great pressure on the USN by forcing it into two night combat actions to prevent bombardments. The ships and battles were lost, but the pressure on the Americans, (and the danger of Lee's defeat in the 2nd battle) was real. The US Navy was not flush with night surface action groups after 1st Guadalcanal, and could ill afford the loss of its 2 best battleships. Yet, this was the outcome in the offering had IJN torpedo salvos been better aimed.
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