D-Day
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07-06-2016, 08:48 PM
RE: D-Day
(07-06-2016 07:45 PM)Gawdzilla Wrote:  With all due respect to Nimitz all fifty-seven fuel tanks could have been refilled by 30 tankers in one month or ten tankers in three months. But the Japanese couldn't have destroyed all the tanks and fuel, they weren't equipped for it.

Rebuilding the things, though? That would add a little time, right, a month or two?

Two months makes Coral Sea impractical, and Midway dicey.
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07-06-2016, 09:07 PM
RE: D-Day
(07-06-2016 08:48 PM)Thumpalumpacus Wrote:  
(07-06-2016 07:45 PM)Gawdzilla Wrote:  With all due respect to Nimitz all fifty-seven fuel tanks could have been refilled by 30 tankers in one month or ten tankers in three months. But the Japanese couldn't have destroyed all the tanks and fuel, they weren't equipped for it.

Rebuilding the things, though? That would add a little time, right, a month or two?

Two months makes Coral Sea impractical, and Midway dicey.

Exactly. It's not just the time to reconstruct the tanks and refill them, it's the time during which the US fleet would have effectively been confined to the US mainland ports on the west coast, and have had difficulty stopping the expanding Japanese empire into regions where it could supply its own oil (as you already pointed out) in places like New Guinea.

I would wager that we'd have lost Australia in that time, too, making the campaign to recapture the Pacific and push on Japan last at least two more years.

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07-06-2016, 09:35 PM
RE: D-Day
I don't think we would have lost Australia. Port Moresby, perhaps. We certainly would have had a harder slog. On the other hand, had our fleet been immobilized by the destruction of fueling and repair facilities, perhaps we wouln't have scored the victory at Midway?

What-ifs are tricky little bastards.
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07-06-2016, 09:36 PM
RE: D-Day
Toland discussed a potential Japanese plan for an invasion of Australia. Assuming the army could have scraped up the 10 divisions necessary the navy told them that they had neither the transport nor the covering forces for such an operation.

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07-06-2016, 09:56 PM
RE: D-Day
And ten divisions is cutting it pretty thin for a country as large and as full of fight as that.
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07-06-2016, 11:30 PM
RE: D-Day
IIRC, Thump, the issue the navy raised was that in order to transport even a force of 10 divisions, since they had no APA type ships, would have required drawing an unacceptable number of merchant vessels which would have seriously impacted the flow of raw materials back to the home country.

They simply did not have the resources for extensive operations. Guadalcanal was an ample demonstration of that.

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08-06-2016, 02:43 AM
RE: D-Day
I did like the destroyers modified to be supply/troop carriers, which they used in the Guadalcanal campaign.

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08-06-2016, 11:32 AM
RE: D-Day
Yeah but even that was an expedient because only the DDs were fast enough to get in, unload, and get out before the sun came up and the planes from Henderson came hunting.

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08-06-2016, 12:18 PM
RE: D-Day
(07-06-2016 11:30 PM)Minimalist Wrote:  IIRC, Thump, the issue the navy raised was that in order to transport even a force of 10 divisions, since they had no APA type ships, would have required drawing an unacceptable number of merchant vessels which would have seriously impacted the flow of raw materials back to the home country.

They simply did not have the resources for extensive operations. Guadalcanal was an ample demonstration of that.

Indeed. Between the Kokoda Trail and the Guadalcanal campaign, their Pacific resources were already strained severely.

I still think ten divisions would have disappeared inside a country the size of Australia, even had then had the APAs.
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08-06-2016, 12:34 PM
RE: D-Day
(08-06-2016 02:43 AM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  I did like the destroyers modified to be supply/troop carriers, which they used in the Guadalcanal campaign.

(08-06-2016 11:32 AM)Minimalist Wrote:  Yeah but even that was an expedient because only the DDs were fast enough to get in, unload, and get out before the sun came up and the planes from Henderson came hunting.

... and the nature of the carriage -- deck-stowed 55-gal drums, shoved into the water and floated ashore -- both restricted the supplies that could be sent (no artillery or light tanks), it also ensured much loss of supplies in the process.

I think their loss at Guadalcanal reflects not only the strain on their resources, but also perhaps the largest loss they suffered at Midway: not four fleet carriers, but rather, hundreds of experienced aircrew. Guadalcanal was, in essence, decided by air strength -- owning Henderson gave us an unsinkable carrier, but with Rabaul 550 miles away, the Japanese had their own. The thing is that the Rabaul air forces were IJA, not IJN with their higher training standards; this was a direct result of the losses at Midway.
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