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Japan invade Hawaii!!!!


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#1 mp38

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Posted 15 December 2002 - 04:40 PM

We all know the Japanese attacke Pearl Harbor with 2 successfull air attacks, and then held back a third attack.

What if the Japanese had an invasion force along with the fleet? Battleships, cruisers, and landing crafts. They could lauch thier third wave of attack aircraft an lauch an invasion force of landing troops on Hawaii! Do you think they could have succeeded? If so, how would this have changed the war?

Matt

#2 redcoat

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Posted 15 December 2002 - 05:04 PM

It wouldn`t smile.gif
The Japanese were not capable of launching a successful invasion against Hawaii.
The Japanese were already at the end of their logistical capability in the attacks on Pearl Habor.
They would not have been able to supply or maintain an invasion that far from their own territory
if in doubt....Panic!!!!

#3 CrazyD

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Posted 15 December 2002 - 08:32 PM

The Japanese were not capable of launching a successful invasion against Hawaii.
The Japanese were already at the end of their logistical capability in the attacks on Pearl Habor.
They would not have been able to supply or maintain an invasion that far from their own territory

Yes, Yes, and Yes.
;)
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#4 Carl G. E. von Mannerheim

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Posted 16 December 2002 - 12:29 AM

I am not sure. It is possible but not likely, but then again, they were able to invade the Philippines, but they were much closer.

CvM

ww2sig3a-1.jpg

With broken heart and bowed in sadness, but not in shame, I report to your Excellency that today I must arrange terms for the surrender of the fortified islands of Manila Bay… With profound regret and the continued pride in my gallant troops I go to meet the Japanese commander. Good-Bye, Mr. President. - Gen. Wainwright, May 5, 1942


#5 mp38

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Posted 16 December 2002 - 02:01 AM

Redcoat and Crazy,

First off, this is a "what if" scenario. Let's not just dismiss something as "not possible".

Second off-
Why not? The Japanese were planning on invading and occupying Midway just 6 months later? They invaded Attu and Kiska, the Phillipenes, China, Tiawan, Java, Guam, Wake, Marshall Is., Gilbert Is., Tinian, Palau, need I say more?????

Why do you think that they weren't capable of launching an invasion? They definately had the troops, ships, and the ability to do so. They also had more experience in amphibious invasion than any other military in 1941!! Plus they would have had air superiority, and naval control!
If the US carriers had shown up, they could have been wiped out! The US Pacific fleet could have been gone!
Plus, don't forget that about half of population of Hawaii was Japanese!

Matt :cool:

#6 CrazyD

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Posted 16 December 2002 - 02:45 PM

They definately had the troops, ships, and the ability to do so.

Hmmm, interesting.. you seem to have found evidence that no other historian in 50 years has found. Congradulations!

Even a "what if" scenario has to be possible! Try suggesting some things that are actually realistic! Have you actually thought about these "what if" scenarios, or do you just throw it out there without a thought??

Geez, wonder why no one else responds :rolleyes:
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#7 PzJgr

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Posted 16 December 2002 - 03:53 PM

I for one think an invasion would have been successful. The navy was pretty much knocked out and in state of chaos. The army was poorly armed and not really ready. The air support was smashed on the ground. It could have been done. I do not believe it would have altered the course of the war. It would have been a logistical nightmare for the Japanese. So, it was a smart move for them not to have invaded even though it did serve as a major naval base for the US.
[SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

#8 CrazyD

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Posted 16 December 2002 - 04:50 PM

Which landing and transport craft would the Japanese have used? The vast majority of such vessels were already deployed...

And what about the fleet size? Such an invasion force would have at least doubled the size of the Japanese fleet that sailed on Pearl Harbor. So would the Japanese fleet still have been able to remain undetected as long as it did? Doubt it...
And if the fleet had been discovered earlier, you can no longer count on the attack at Pearl Harbor proceeding the same way.

In other words, the sheer size of an invasion fleet would have cancelled the suprise advantage the Japanese enjoyed at Pearl Harbor. And no suprise means prepared American defenders. Which would probably mean a horribly unsuccessful attack against Pearl Harbor (ready and waiting battleships plus carriers available), and any invasion ideas the Japanese had go down the toilet.
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#9 PzJgr

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Posted 16 December 2002 - 06:18 PM

I disagree. The Japanese did have surprise on their side regardless of the size of force. The American new the force left Japan but did not know where it was going. They could not defend all of their areas. Using the same sized force as was used in the invasion of the Phillipines would have been sufficient for the job. Question is, could it have been done successfully? I say yes. Could it have been held onto? Not for long. Would it have been a smart move? I say no. That would have left the Phillipines in American hands and having such a force that close would have been disastrous. The choice would have been Hawaii or Phillipines. Not both.
[SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

#10 CrazyD

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Posted 16 December 2002 - 06:38 PM

I disagree. The Japanese did have surprise on their side regardless of the size of force. The American new the force left Japan but did not know where it was going.

What do you mean? This makes no sense!!
True, the Americans knew the Japanese fleet left Japan. And they were looking for it, right? So if you add on a hundred ships or so, BY DEFINITION the fleet become larger and thus easier to find. Not to mention the fact that troop transports are far slower than battleships and carriers, so they would have slowed down the whole fleet.

So how in the world would Japan achieve suprise "regardless of the size of their force"?? With their magic cloaking devices???

Geez, that what-ifs this week seem to be ignoring the real world...
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#11 PzJgr

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Posted 16 December 2002 - 07:16 PM

There were two different forces that departed Japan. The Carrier force that attacked Hawaii and the invasion force that landed in the Aluetians. With those two forces, the Americans still could not find out where they were. The Americans kept an eye on Alaska, Hawaii, Midway, Guam, the Solomons, The Phillipines and who knows where else. Were the Americans not surprised by the attack on Pearl Harbor? The invasion could have taken place and achieved surprise. Just knowing that a task force left does not mean knowing where it was going to. And in a what if scenario, we do change some of the variables so we can discuss what kind of outcome would have resulted. In this case, what would have resulted had the Japanese invaded Hawaii? Not, was it feasible?
[SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

#12 CrazyD

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Posted 16 December 2002 - 08:28 PM

With those two forces, the Americans still could not find out where they were.

But if one of those forces had been larger AND slower ?

Were the Americans not surprised by the attack on Pearl Harbor? The invasion could have taken place and achieved surprise.

Again, could you actually provide any evidence or theories as to how this larger, slower fleet would have escaped detection? Or rather, since you seem to be saying that it would not have been possible for the Americans to detect the fleet, could you again elaborate on these cloaking devices?

An invasion force would also require massive amounts of supplies and provisions, further enlarging the fleet.

A Japanese invasion of Pearl Harbor would have been contrary to the entire point of the operation- the Japanese wanted to eliminate American Naval power, not invade Hawaii.

The aerial attack on Pearl Harbor tok only a couple hours- an invasion would have taken far longer, at least half a day just to land the first wave of soldiers. Look at D-Day- all the practice and equipment the Allies had, and yet they ran into major resistance. How would the Japanese have overcome this? Or do we take here the same theory that is often used with the British- that the Americans would simply freeze up in terror and surrender? (I love it- here agin, we have NO mention of Americans defending Hawaii- apparently, in what if scenarios, the allies no longer have their ability to fight! Allied)

Elaborating on the above non-mentioned point, MP and PzJgr, you are both assuming that the Japanese could easily roll up the entire Island without a fight! Hmmm... similar assumptions were made by the germans at Stalingrad and the Battle of Britian... How'd that work out?!

And, as you note, the Japanese would clearly not have been able to hold Hawaii even if they had invaded- so the premise of your what if is based on the Japanese attempting an operation they knew to be useless.

Discussing the outcome of a what-if is pointless if the basis for the scenario in the first place is flawed. It is pointless to throw out an impossible scenario and then say "what would have happened"...

What if the Japanese had enlisted Godzilla to attack Pearl Harbor instead of a carrier fleet? What would that outcome have been then?
:rolleyes: :rolleyes: :rolleyes: ]

In conclusion, if I could just quote redcoat, who actually laid out the REAL-WORLD issues surrounding this idea-

The Japanese were not capable of launching a successful invasion against Hawaii.
The Japanese were already at the end of their logistical capability in the attacks on Pearl Habor.
They would not have been able to supply or maintain an invasion that far from their own territory

Again, Yes, Yes, and Yes.

Unless the Japanese had Godzilla.
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#13 CrazyD

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Posted 17 December 2002 - 03:29 PM

Some notes on Japanese landing forces...

When that great Pacific offensive began in December 1941, there were a dozen full-size Special Naval Landing Forces in existence. All had been organized over the previous two years. These units were as follows:
Japanese Naval Landing Forces

Unit
Size
Comments

1st Kure SNLF
1401 men
Landing at Legaspi, (Philippines)

2nd Kure SNLF
1401 men
Landing at Jolo Island (Philippines)

1st Maizuru SNLF
746 men
At Hainan Naval District, 3rd China Fleet

2nd Maizuru SNLF
1069 men
Landing on Wake Island

1st Sasebo SNLF
1622 men
Landing on Menado, Celebes

2nd Sasebo SNLF
1473 men
Under 32 Special Base Force, 3rd Fleet

8th Sasebo SNLF
746 men
At Hainan Naval District, 3rd China Fleet

Shanghai SNLF
746 men
Operated from port of Shanghai, China

1st Yokosuka SNLF
849 men
Parachutes onto Menado airfield, Celebes
(naval parachute unit)

2nd Yokosuka SNLF
746 men
Landings at Miri, Seria, and Lutong, Sarawak

3rd Yokosuka SNLF
849 men
Landing on Koepang, Timor Island
(naval parachute unit)

4th Yokosuka SNLF
746 men
At Hainan Naval District, 3rd China Fleet

              Note List of SNLF units for December 7, 1941

from http://www.geocities...ndies/SNLF.html

http://www.star-game.../snlf/snlf.html
Another page on the SNLF troops.

more...

The Japanese drive unfolded a new an effective tactical pattern. The landing of troops was preceded by thorough aerial and submarine reconnaissance and by intensive aerial bombardment of airfields near the landing points selected.

The actual landing of troops was always carried out in overwhelming force. Transports were escorted to the beaches by cruisers and destroyers.

Following Pearl Harbor, the Japanese launched simultaneous attacks on Midway, Wake, Guam, Hong Kong, Luzon, and Malaysia, all of which had to be secured to protect Japan's supply lines in the western Pacific.

http://www.uog.edu/f...do/japblitz.htm

One other thing I learned- Japanese troop transport ships were rather large, capable of carrying at least 1000 troops. So the Japanese fleet would have had enough ships to transpost the troops needed to invade Hawaii. Unfortunately, these troop transports were also slow, and they did not have the fule capacity of the larger ships. Thus a trip to Pearl Harbor would have taken at least TWICE as long with transports attached, once one not only considers slow speed but also required refueling.

Soooo... in light of this EVIDENCE...

The Japanese had approximately 13,000 Naval Landing troops available at the time of Pearl Harbor. And, these troops were BUSY when Pearl Harbor was attacked. As noted above, and as makes sense, the Japanese Landing troops were used to conquer Midway, Wake, Guam, Luzon, and Malaysia- all of which were targets the Japanese could hope for some success atacking. Even more, these conquests were necessary to ensure Japanese supplies.

So- for this invasion of Pearl Harbor scenario, even if we ignore the real-world practical difficulties involved in actually transporting the troops over 1000 miles to Pearl Harbor (love those magic cloaking devices!), this "invasion" idea still is confronted by a major flaw. WHat of their other conquests would the Japanese have had to forgoe had they invaded Pearl Harbor? Would they skip Wake Island? Or Guam? You guys (and the Japanese) can't have it both ways- unless of course the Japanese could also magically produce extra invasion troops!

In addition to this, the Japanese would not have been able to use many of their common tactics for landings. "Aerial and submarine reconaissance"? Well, maybe the Japanese could have snuck a few submarines into Pearl Harbor to do SOME reconaissance (Oh yeah, the cloaking devices again- OF COURSE we would not have caught them!)... BUT- I don't think the Japanese had similar cloaking devices for their air recon forces. So without aerial reconaissance, the Japanese troops would have been landing on beaches they had not even seen, yet alone rehearsed and trained for.
And the bombardment that always preceeded Japanese landing forces- hmmmm... would the Japanese have still been able to maintain the advantage of suprise while bombarding the beaches at Peark Harbor? Think not... But wait, you say- they are already attacking the ships! They would not need suprise! -- Correct. And if they were using their efforts and munitions to bombard the beaches, what about the American ships? Again, can't have it both ways- either the Japanese air forces fire on the ships in the harbor, OR they bomb the beaches.

Considering all this, and considering that I have yet to hear any EXPLANATION as to how the Japanese would have remained undetected for 1000 miles moving at half speed, I think clearly any Japanese invasion of Hawaii was logistically and practically impossible.

Sorry- I know how much evidence can detract from a discussion like this! :rolleyes:

Although the Godzilla theory still lingers...

[ 17. December 2002, 09:31 AM: Message edited by: CrazyD ]
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#14 mp38

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Posted 17 December 2002 - 11:07 PM

Good research Crazy!

Ok, we've discussed long enough weather or not the invasion was actually possible. Now lets' get back to the original question proposed.

what if the Japanese did launch a 3 attack wave, and what if they did invade Hawaii successfully? How would this have changed the war?
DO you think the US would counter attack with an invasion of Hawaii? or do you think that they would strickly defend the West coast from any future Japanese attacks?

Matt :cool:

#15 AndyW

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Posted 18 December 2002 - 09:43 AM

See the following essay from a pretty good Pacific War site:

http://64.124.221.191/pearlops.htm

OTOH, it would be interesting to know if the U.S. intelligence actually _expected_ a Japanese Invasion on P.H.-Day or later?

Cheers,

[ 18. December 2002, 03:43 AM: Message edited by: AndyW ]
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#16 Kai-Petri

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Posted 18 December 2002 - 11:09 AM

I just loved this bit from the site Andy sent...

There's only one little problem with this scenario:

It's utter nonsense.

:D :D

I am not going in too deep on this one as I haven´t done research on this any more than just a bit on the Pearl Harbor and Midway. But I do think that the stuff I did on Pearl harbor earlier here had something interesting on it. That is, the Japanese never really got a strategic victory at Pearl Harbor but instead woke the bear from its sleep...

the question of the third attack wave!

I think it was agreed that the Japanese wanted to paralyze the US fleet for six months, and they got it. If I understood it right as well they never aimed to make more than one attack wave but made two and thought of a third but because of several dangarous factors decided to leave it undone.

http://www.ww2forums...ic;f=8;t=000030

Then as well the actual results were quite poor even if looked great.The SOLID and DESTRUCTIVE results were not reached and thus the Pearl harbor bombing was a failure in that sense.

"The Japanese failure to destroy the base infrastructure and the American carriers ultimately turned Pearl Harbor into a strategic defeat.
Had its indispensable support facilities been destroyed too, the fleet would have been forced to retreat to harbours on the American west coast, 2,200 miles further away from Japanese operations"

Now that would have changed things, I think.As well the logistics for the US troops would have been harder to achieve.

Anyway, I am happy that the Japs and Nazis lost but I think we were fortunate as well.

[ 18. December 2002, 05:10 AM: Message edited by: Kai-Petri ]
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#17 Biggus

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Posted 18 December 2002 - 12:09 PM

Hi Guys,

Been lurking for awhile, thought I might as well start posting.

MP38, I think the point that you're missing is that the intention was NOT to invade Hawaii. It was just to take the USN out of the war.

I think that taking Hawaii would be pointless. It would mean that the Japanese would have to give up some of their ambitions for the south Pacific, and try to defend what is really an indefensible position at the end of a supply line that would be under constant attack by any remaining US naval forces. And it would probably not delay the USAAF from deploying to Aus and PNG to harrass supply lines in the south.

Just my 0.02c.

#18 CrazyD

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Posted 18 December 2002 - 02:48 PM

Yeah, let's discuss the possible results of an IMPOSSIBLE scenario.

Duh...

Biggus ( :D ), thatis only one of the many points being missed :rolleyes:

It would mean that the Japanese would have to give up some of their ambitions for the south Pacific,

Very true indeed. For this What-If to have ANY validity at all, one also has to consider the areas the Japanese would NOT have been able to take if they had attempted an invasion of Pearl Harbor. Such an invasion would have (obviously to some of us!) required troops and equipment. SO what would the Japanese sacrifice? Probably their position in the Phillipines... and which would be more valuable? The Japanese were actually able to hold the Phillipines. Hawaii??? Not a chance. The Japanese forces would have quickly found themselves with no support, no supplies, and no options.

The SOLID and DESTRUCTIVE results were not reached and thus the Pearl harbor bombing was a failure in that sense.

Good point, Kai... and agin along these lines... The Japanese did not even entirely succeed in their attack on Pearl Harbor. So not only would an invasion have left them stranded in a bad position, but the US carrier force could have quickly and efficiently moved in and wiped them out.

Andy, I get the idea that US intelligence was not really worried, at least about the mainland US. I think they clearly recognized the same thing many of us have noted- an invasion over such distances and under such conditions was not really a threat. Now Hawaii- I'm sure there was some minor consideration that the Japanese would attempt an invasion... but if anything, I think the attack on Pearl Harbor probably quieted those suspicions. The Japanese attacked the naval forces and them immediately pulled back. This was probably a relatively clear signal to the US that the Japanese in fact did not have the capability to stage any such invasion, otherwise why would they not have tried it on the battered and beaten Pearl Harbor? I'm sure the American planners could see that the Japanese would not have had any better shot than P.H. So when that danger passed...
The American people, now that was a different story entirely. From what I have read, I get the idea that the entire West coast was thoroughly paranoid that the Japanese would be showing up on their beaches at any moment!

[ 18. December 2002, 08:55 AM: Message edited by: CrazyD ]
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#19 AndyW

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Posted 18 December 2002 - 05:45 PM

The Japanese must have been really desperate (in a realpolitik and geo-political meaning) to attack P.H. and going on war with the almighty U.S.A.

I mean, if the Japanese leadership considered THIS (war with the U.S.A.) as a more favorable / successful alternative compared to "appeasing" the U.S.A., I can imagine that they were running out of political and peaceful alternatives.

Maybe to them it was a question of staying a major power in the Pacific or becoming just another a minor country, living under U.S./CW hegemony in the Pacific area. I guess Japan's urgent need for colonies / imports mixed with the impossibility to get the needed resources in a peaceful way (e.g. by trade relationship with the U.S./CW) didn't left much room for peace.

Just a thought.

Cheers,

[ 18. December 2002, 11:47 AM: Message edited by: AndyW ]
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#20 CrazyD

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Posted 18 December 2002 - 07:40 PM

Heh! Funny, Andy, I was sitting here enjoying my afternoon (1/2 personal day when I SHOULD be shopping...) and a somewhat similar idea struck me...

I was thinking along the lines of combining MP's original What-if scenario with some of the issues that have been raised as problems with said What If...
Now, from my point of view, as things were, the Japanese could not realitically have attempted and invasion of Pearl Harbor. One of the major reasons for this would seem to be their lack of sufficient troops, equipment, and logistics. As redcoat noted, the Japanese were already at the end of a very long "logistical road" when they attacked Pearl Harbor. And I believe also a major problem with the What-If as it stood was the lack of Japanese troops- where would the invasion force be drawn from?
As it was, the Japanese were mainly concerned with a war of conquest, and the aquisition of as much territory and "power" as possible.
But...
Let's suppose a couple elements here. Let say, the Japanese had changed their entire outlook on entering/persecuting the war. Instead of conquest, the Japanese decide right from the beginning, as early as the mid-30s even that they will be going to war- with the express intent of conquering the US. Instead of their other island conquests (as it was, the main areas where they used their few amphibious invasion troops), the Japanese focused ENTIRELY on defeating the US?

Now in some areas (proably many actually!) of the Pacific war, I'll be the first to admit that my knowledge is deficient. One question I will need to look into is (here's a suprise ;) ) the resource and logistics situation of the Japanese upon entering the war. The resources and materials that fueled the Japanese war machine- were they mainly indigenous, or were these materials mainly assimilated from conquered tterritories?

Depending on said resource situation, I think this one could be a very interesting scenario. Let's go with an attack on Pearl Harbor as planned. In addition to this, instead of attacking the Phillipines, Luzon, etc., the Japanese concentrate all of their immediate soldiers and supplies into as big an invasion force as they could. And maybe attempt a multiple-group invasion of the west coast?
The only real major difficulty I could see off the top of my head for the Japanese would be an issue I already raised- how the invasion fleet would manage to make it any significant distance without detection...

Any thoughts on this? Does this scenario fall under the same category as the original hawaii invasion idea- an essentially impossible scenario? Or would the Japanese be able to mount anythign significant?

Or am I just way out on a limb here???

[ 18. December 2002, 01:42 PM: Message edited by: CrazyD ]
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#21 Kai-Petri

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Posted 18 December 2002 - 08:15 PM

Hmmmm.....Going to some data on this.I think the last one on Japanese technology is the most interesting.Sounds like the US fleet went to the Pearl Harbor for all the wrong reasons?? And the Lindberg´s non-interventionist movement? Never heard of that one before...Anyone else?
--------

Three events involving the sites at Cavite and Heeia, Hawaii, from 1938 to 1941 will strikingly illustrate how truly primitive were the communications which served the Navy's COMINT function overseas. In September 1938, Lieutenant Jack S. Holtwick, then the CINCAF Radio Intelligence Officer, complained to OP-20-G about the lack of electrical communications between the unit at Cavite and the flagship. He said that "it now takes days to obtain COMINT information needed to prepare a daily status report." In 1940, Hawaii commented on tracking Japanese naval vessels during annual maneuvers stating that "the only helpful direction finding came from the Philippine unit by Clipper mail!"96 Finally, on 5 January 1940 Admiral Stark, CNO, requested the Bureau of Engineering to connect the site at Heeia to an Army cable which then terminated at Kailua, eight miles away. Stark also requested the engineers to arrange for an intercom between the communications intelligence unit at Pearl harbor, the Lualualei direction finding site, and Heeia, also by Army cable, using "other than teletype instruments." These arrangements were meant to replace the public party line telephone service. By 7 December 1941, the work had not been done, and with the loss of telephone service in the attack, there were no communications between Heeia and Pearl Harbor (about thirty road miles) except by vehicle!

On 7 May 1940, the U.S. fleet moved its headquarters from San Pedro, California, to Pearl Harbor. The move was undertaken with great reluctance by Admiral James O. Richardson, Commander in Chief, U.S. Fleet. Richardson and most Navy officials who opposed the move thought a fleet anchored in Pearl Harbor would be unnecessarily exposed to Japanese naval strength. President Roosevelt, however, considered the move as a necessary countermeasure to growing Japanese bellicosity. Throughout 1940 Richardson bitterly voiced his objections to relocating his headquarters to Pearl Harbor because it challenged the soundness of U.S. policy in the Pacific. He claimed that Pacific naval offensive -- the heart of the Navy's War Plan Orange -- was sure to fail because the U.S. did not have the capability to support an offensive west of Hawaii. He also noted a factor not considered by the war planners: the U.S. was now vulnerable to attack in the Atlantic and the Caribbean. In January 1941, Roosevelt ordered him relieved. His replacement was Admiral Husband E. Kimmel who, at the same time, was designated Commander in Chief, U.S. Pacific Fleet (CINCPACFLT).

On 7 December 1940, exactly one year to the day before Japan attacked Pearl Harbor, Lieutenant Commander Edwin T. Layton, a Japanese linguist with past experience in OP-20-G, became the Fleet Intelligence Officer, and a few months later, Commander Joseph J. Rochefort, who was the only man in the Navy who was both a cryptanalyst and a Japanese linguist, became OIC of the 14th Naval District's Radio Intelligence research effort.
They quickly established a close working relationship, and the liaison would soon prove immensely beneficial to the U.S. Pacific Fleet.

In one instance Layton's analysis of callsign and address usage, which he had undertaken during 1941 at Rochefort's request, was sent to Washington on the order of Admiral Kimmel.99 His conclusion that the Japanese had begun a military buildup in the Mandate Island (Marianas, Carolines, and Marshalls) was a development which had gone unnoticed by COMINT analysts in Washington, Unexpectedly, rather than foster good relationships between Pearl Harbor and Washington, this episode caused considerable ill feeling toward Layton and Rochefort. It may also have marked the beginning of an unhealthy intramural OP-20-G rivalry between the Washington and Hawaiian centers over the issues of COMINT reporting responsibilities and Japanese intentions which persisted well into 1942. :eek:

The COM-14 daily summaries clearly showed that Lieutenant Thomas A. Huckins and Lieutenant John A. Williams, who headed the traffic analysis unit, had solved both the strategic and tactical Japanese naval communication structures. They understood the callsign generation system and were able quickly to reestablish order of battle data after routine callsign changes. This insight permitted unit identifications to the squadron level in ground-based-air and destroyer units.
The capability to exploit these features of Japanese Navy communications lasted until about three weeks prior to the attack on Pearl Harbor when callup and addressing procedures changed abruptly.

http://www.history.n...l/books/comint/

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Congress was specific in its finding against the 1941 White House( October 2000 ): Kimmel and Short were cut off from the intelligence pipeline that located Japanese forces advancing on Hawaii. Then, after the successful Japanese raid, both commanders were relieved of their commands, blamed for failing to ward off the attack, and demoted in rank.

President Clinton must now decide whether to grant the request by Congress to restore the commanders to their 1941 ranks. Regardless of what the Commander-in-Chief does in the remaining months of his term, these congressional findings should be widely seen as an exoneration of 59 years of blame assigned to Kimmel and Short.

Roosevelt believed that provoking Japan into an attack on Hawaii was the only option he had in 1941 to overcome the powerful America First non-interventionist movement led by aviation hero Charles Lindbergh. These anti-war views were shared by 80 percent of the American public from 1940 to 1941. Though Germany had conquered most of Europe, and her U-Boats were sinking American ships in the Atlantic Ocean—including warships—Americans wanted nothing to do with “Europe’s War.”
:eek: :confused: (What?? )

Japanese leaders failed in basic security precautions. At least 1,000 Japanese military and diplomatic radio messages per day were intercepted by monitoring stations operated by the U.S. and her Allies, and the message contents were summarized for the White House. The intercept summaries were clear: Pearl Harbor would be attacked on December 7, 1941, by Japanese forces advancing through the Central and North Pacific Oceans. On November 27 and 28, 1941, Admiral Kimmel and General Short were ordered to remain in a defensive posture for “the United States desires that Japan commit the first overt act.” The order came directly from President Roosevelt.

http://www.independe...07Stinnett.html

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Throughout 1941 U.S. radio interception stations kept track of major Japanese ships by listening to messages. Although the messages could not be decoded, they usually could be traced to specific ships because U.S. eavesdroppers knew the Japanese “fists”--the characteristics of individual Japanese telegraph operators--and linked them to certain ships. But in December 1941 the messages stopped--the Japanese fleet had been ordered into radio silence.

The mystery of the “missing” ships worried Lt. Comdr. Edwin T. Layton, intelligence officer on the staff of the U.S. Pacific Fleet commander at Pearl Harbor, Adm. Husband E. Kimmel.

“Do you mean to say,” Kimmel asked Layton on December 2, “they could be rounding Diamond Head [an Oahu landmark] and you wouldn’t know it?”

“I hope they would have been spotted before now,” Layton said.

intelligence officers in Washington did have some general indications of Japanese moves. But for perceived security reasons, the Washington officers declined to share that information with intelligence officers in Pearl Harbor.

In Hawaii the U.S. naval commander, Admiral Kimmel, took minimal steps to increase readiness, sending aircraft carriers to deliver Marine planes to Wake Island and the Midway Islands. The Army commander, General Short, also did little, except to line up his planes in tight groups to protect them against possible sabotage.

http://plasma.nation...ies/story6.html
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The real surprise was not the intentions of the Japanese military, or even the proximate time, it was the ability of Japanese pilots and ordinance to successfully execute the attacks.
There was a shortlist of four targets: the two most likely being Pearl Harbor, where the US Pacific fleet was stationed, and Clark Air Force Base, where virtually all of the US bombers were stationed.What was unexpected was Japanese capabilities.US military intelligence had assessed, based on observation of Japanese air shows, that Japan did not have the capacity to launch torpedoes from airplanes in shallow water. Torpedoes in 1941 were usually deployed in deep water, so their motors could start to propel to the surface before they hit the ocean floor. If Japanese pilots did not have the technology and skill to launch torpedoes in shallow water, the safest place for the US battleships would be in the shallow waters of Pearl Harbor. So, marshaled in the presumably safe harbor, the fleet was kept on an alert 1 status (the lowest of three alerts)

At Clark Air Force base, there could be no possible surprise about Japan's intention. Japan had already attacked the US, nine hours earlier. The US command assumed, however, its bombers were safe because, with the Japanese carriers now known to be in Hawaii, the nearest available Japanese bombers, based in Taiwan, could not reach the Philippines without mid air refueling. And US intelligence had assessed that these land-based bombers could not by refueled in mid-air by Japanese pilots. So the U.S. left its only wing of bombers parked, wing to wing, in the open. What was unexpected was that Japan, like the US, had perfected mid-air fueling techniques. In both cases, the US were surprised, not by the intentions of the Japan, but by its technology.

:eek:
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#22 Kai-Petri

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Posted 19 December 2002 - 09:03 AM

SOME MORE INFORMATION

March 1941

Nagao Kita, Honolulu's new Consul General arrives on Oahu with Takeo Yoshikawa, a trained spy. As the military of both countries prepared for possible war, the planners needed information about the opponent.

The U.S. knew that Hawaii was full of Japanese intelligence officers but because of our constitutional rights very little could be done. Untrained agents like Kohichi Seki, the Honolulu consulate's treasurer, traveled around the island noting all types of information about the movement of the fleet. When the attack occurred the Japanese had a very clear picture of Pearl Harbor and where individual ships were moored.

April

American scientists had developed a machine, code named 'Magic" which gave U.S. intelligence officers the ability to read Japanese secret message traffic. 'Magic' provided all types of high quality information but because of preconceived ideas in Washington some data was not followed up on and important pieces of the pre-attack puzzle were missed.

While the U.S. had all the data needed to arrive at a clear picture of Japanese intentions, the Navy had an internal struggle between the Office of Naval Intelligence and the War Plans Division about which department should be the primary collection office. When the War Plans Division was finally designated the first in line for data, all of the Navys intelligence collection was degraded .

To further complicate this problem the Army had its own intell office, G-2. At times the Army and the Navy did not talk to each other, again reducing the ability to divine Japan's intentions. Finally, Washington did not communicate all the available information that was received to all commands, at times thinking that such a transmission would result in duplication. All in all the U.S. knew that Japan was going to expand its war but the question remained, where? If U.S. Intell people had communicated , preparations for the attack could have been improved.

May

Admiral Nomura informed his superiors that he had learned Americans were reading his message traffic. No one in Tokyo believed that their code could have been broken. The code was not changed.

November

Tokyo sends Saburo Kurusu, an experienced diplomat to washington as a special envoy to assist Ambassador Admiral Kichisaburo Nomura, who continued to seek a diplomatic solution.

On the 16th the first units,submarines, involved in the attack departed Japan.

On the 26th the main body, aircraft carriers and escorts, began the transit to Hawaii.

December 7th

At 0750, Hawaiian time, the first wave of Japanesee aircraft began the attack. Along with the ships in Pearl Harbor, the air stations at Hickam, Wheeler, Ford Island, Kaneohe and Ewa Field were attacked.

http://history.acusd...e/RD-PEARL.html
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#23 Kai-Petri

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Posted 19 December 2002 - 09:11 AM

Something the Japanese were very interested in Europe...Somehow..

FAA and the Strike on Taranto

Shortly before 2100, on 11 November 1940, 12 swordfish biplanes took off from the Illustrious. Six carried torpedoes, four carried six 250lb bombs and 2 had four bombs and heavy illuminating flares.All carried extra fuel tanks either in the rear cockpits or slung on the outside.

By 2250 they were approaching Taranto. Anti-aircraft and machine-gun fire rose to meet them. Just off Cape San Vito, the two aircraft with flares swung away to starboard while the first wave of aircraft lined up to attack through the line of Barrage balloons, from the east. As they flew in across the bay, in front lay the battleship Cavour. The second wave which arrived an hour later swung in over Cape Rondinella, but by 0300 all except two aircraft were safely back aboard Illustrious. They had left Taranto in chaos. The Italian battleships Cavour, Littorio and Duilio had all been successfully torpedoed; Cavour was permanently out of action as were the other two for many months. Behind Mare Grande an aircraft hanger had been left blazing and a cruiser damaged by bombs. Of the two Swordfish that failed to return, one crew member had been taken prisoner. The other two were killed during the attack.
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The cost in human life had been surprisingly light and nothing compared to some of the other great naval engagements of the war. The Royal Navy had lost two men killed and two more taken prisoner-of-war. The Italians had lost a total of 40 men; one on the Duilio, sixteen on the Conti di Cavour and twenty-three on the Littorio. The Littorio was to be out of action for five months, the Duilio for six months, and the Conti di Cavour was still being repaired when Italy surrendered. The Trento was out of commission for months from the damage of the single unexploded bomb. Perhaps as important as the physical damage done to the Italian warships was the psychological damage. Taranto, the main offensive base of the Royal italian Navy had been shown to be insecure. The day after the raid Supermarina ordered the Vittorio Veneto and the Giulio Cesare to sail north for the port of Naples, where they would be safer. They would also be so far away from the important sealanes as to pose almost no threat to the British. The Italian fleet did fight other actions against the British, the largest being at Cape Matapan, but the raid on Taranto effectively ended any hope the Italians had of actually turning the Mediterranean into the Mare Nostrum so beloved of Fascist propaganda. For the Royal Navy it had been a good night's work

http://www.geocities.../5443/tar3b.htm

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#24 Axisgeneral1

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Posted 18 February 2003 - 08:14 PM

This changes the course of the war in a huge way. Had the Japaneese invaded Hawaii then FDR has a hard time convincing the country to go after Germany first. In this What-If USA goes after Japan first and defeats Japan in 1944, but suffers more casualties because no A-Bomb is ready and has to invade Japan. Germany still gets crushed by the Russians.
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#25 CrazyD

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Posted 18 February 2003 - 09:11 PM

Didn't FDR decide to go after the Japanese first?

If we want to get technical, wouldn't the Doolittle raid be the first US offensive action of the war?

I had the impression that the US did in fact go after Japan first...
Sno-Balls? Sno-Balls? Where the %#$@ are the God damn Twinkies?




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