If the war in the Pacific had ended quicker.

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by Rufus123, Sep 29, 2013.

  1. Rufus123

    Rufus123 Member

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    This question is more about how the US armed forces would have responded organizationally rather that militarily.

    Lets say the war ended at lets say the war ended in the Pacific in a 12-18 months after Pearl Harbor do to right moves on the USN and the other Pacific allies part and mistakes on Japans part and Japan saw the writing on the wall and came to terms.

    You suddenly have all of these naval aviators available and more carriers that needed for Europe.

    Would in a situation with the war still hot in Europe would some personal possibly be moved from the Navy to the Air Corps?
     
  2. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    I doubt they would have moved them from the Navy to the Army. They would have just transferred them to Europe.
     
  3. Rufus123

    Rufus123 Member

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    Thanks,

    A further question along this line. If there was not need for so many carrier based operations would some of the naval aviators become a land based force and start using land based aircraft?
     
  4. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    I would imagine the U.S. Navy would have moved a considerable amount of it's assets to the Atlantic and Med since the Kreigsmarine was still very much a threat, especially the U-Boats.

    The U.S. Army could have used the additional pilots and assets in the ETO/MTO as well.

    And while it's not likely, the possibility of U.S. Marine involvement would have been available in both amphibeous and aerial support, particularly in the Med/Italian campaign.
     
  5. Rufus123

    Rufus123 Member

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    :)

    This is turning into one of these questions where each answer leads to another question.

    If the Marines do not participate in Europe with no more war in the Pacific what assignment would they be given?
     
  6. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    They probably would have flown naval aircraft from land bases. That was done in the Pacific quite a bit as well.

    They also would have probably moved more Carriers to the Atlantic and Med, and flown operations from the Carriers as well.
     
  7. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    I am sure that as long as there is a war going on the Marines will be involved. No reason for them not to be a part of the fighting in Europe. Army units were fighting in the Pacific as well.
     
  8. nuuumannn

    nuuumannn Well-Known Member

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    #8 nuuumannn, Sep 29, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2013
    US carriers did actually operate in the Atlantic against the Germans during WW2, with naval aviators flying combat sorties and even shooting down German aircraft. Specifically, F6Fs were aboard the escort carriers Kasaan Bay and Tulagi in what was known as Anvil-Dragoon (although this was changed to the less emotive D-Day South), in support of invasion forces in the South of France after D-Day. F6Fs of VF-74 and VOF-1 flew artillery and naval gunfire spotting flights, but combat with German aircraft did occur, largely against bombers and transports, Ju 52/3ms, He 111s, a Do 217 and Ju 88 were claimed. These were the only combat operations by US Navy Hellcats in the ETO.

    I suspect US carriers would have been employed in the Mediterranean in support of the Allied advance in Italy and against the Germans in the South of France and the Balkans and Greece post D-Day, probably against Norway as well.
     
  9. swampyankee

    swampyankee Active Member

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    The USMC would probably not be built to the level that they reached in this time line, as the Army and Marines probably didn't play that well together, and Europe would largely be seen as an Army operation.

    Post-war it gets weirder: the USMC and USN would probably have less influence in proportion to the USAAF and US Army. With the increased effort in Europe, no atomic weapons may have been dropped, which makes the entire nuclear weapons issue less politically important in the US, but the USN is also viewed less as a front-line force than as a helper to the US Army and an ASW force.
     
  10. bobbysocks

    bobbysocks Well-Known Member

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    you would still need a large contingent to stay in the PTO as an occupation force and to run relief efforts. the question for me is....even if the war ended would japanese troops on the island lay down their arms? or would they continue to resist to the bitter end? some did not believe it when the order to surrender was given in 45... i could see operations still having to go on at least on some of the islands even after tokyo surrenders.
     
  11. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    I suspect, however, that the U.S. Marines would have been very useful in such operations as the Italian landings and would have certainly been an asset in the D-Day beach assaults.
     
  12. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

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    I would suspect that the marines would be given occupation duty in the Pacific. Nor would they expand beyond a few divisions.

    I dont see them being used in the ETO at all.
     
  13. parsifal

    parsifal Well-Known Member

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    The problem with trying to use the USN Blue Water assets in the Atlantic is that its a force structure trained, equipped and organized for force projection and not so much for ASW escort work. It is not at all suited to operations in far northern latitudes, and has only limited rough weather capability. these are all limitations that can be overcome, but it would take time....maybe a year or so. you would not see significant force projection into the Atlantic until roughly 2 to 2.5 years after US entry. Probably just in time for Normandy, after which usefulness of additional naval assets in the TO has to be questioned.

    But the Navy under a man like King is never going to willingly give over assets to the army or the air force.

    Army assets in the Pacific are fairly limited...maybe 2 divs at most until the middle of '43. Air force assets might add 150-300 aircraft to the ETO......in other words, virtually no effect in the ETO
     
  14. Maxrobot1

    Maxrobot1 Member

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    If the Japanese surrendered in the early 1943 time frame, a lot of Navy projects would have been frozen or stopped altogether so that resources could be used by the Army in the European theater. Some satellite plants making Navy planes would be converted to Army planes and a lot more steel, aluminum and other raw materials would be re-allocated. The big Midway class carriers would be put on hold and the Essex class reduced in number.
    Draftees would be sent only to the Army and all the other War material like trucks, tanks, gasoline diverted right away allowing D-Day to be launched much sooner.
    For example, imagine all the B-24s that were sent to the 14th A.F in India and 5th A.F in the South Pacific sent to England and North Africa!
     
  15. Rufus123

    Rufus123 Member

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    Is the Med a better place for US ships and the British take care of the Atlantic?
     
  16. Rufus123

    Rufus123 Member

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    Of course I could be wrong but If all the assets are moved to the Atlantic I would think that there would be more capital ships that can be efficiently used.

    While carriers would be nice how many are there between the USA and the British?

    Are there enough naval assets available to actually force an end to all Axis naval operations in the Atlantic. Maybe force the battle the Japanese wanted. The Standards and the British slower big gun ship can threaten naval bases with the backing of land based bombers and naval aircraft. Maybe systematically destory the Submarine bases with overwhelming force.

    Later do the fast carriers become mainly aircraft transports? Can the Navies of the USA and Britain run out of land targets that the guns ships can fire on as assets move inland?
     
  17. swampyankee

    swampyankee Active Member

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    #17 swampyankee, Oct 3, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2013
    There was a fairly significant chunk of the USN involved in ASW and the Atlantic and Mediterranean, in general.

    He just won't get them. He may have had a lot of influence on the assets the navy was allocated, but trying to keep those assets in a backwater would not be a career-enhancing move. Ultimately, King would do what he's ordered or he'd get an early start on his memoirs.


    It's not so much the assets the army has in the Pacific at the time: it's the assets that won't go there in 1944 and 1945. Maybe the ships can't be converted into tanks, but the amphibious shipping was in short supply, and it would get moved. And a lot of ships would not get built, as they are superfluous.
     
  18. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    The additional U.S. Naval assets being shifted into the Med would have been a huge help in shore assaults like Anzio, for example. Look at how the concentrated Battleship fire kept the defenders off-guard in assaults like Iwo Jima and Okinawa.

    Look at the existing numbers used in assaults like Anzio as well as Normandy. Add to that number at least half of the Battleships and Heavy Cruisers used in the PTO, for example, and this adds up to a serious amount of naval assets to support the landings.

    Like I said before, if the U.S. Marines weren't being used in the PTO, then their experience would be a boost to shore landings, even if they were simply used to assault and secure a beachhead and not as overland infantry.
     
  19. parsifal

    parsifal Well-Known Member

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    USN ships only provided a fairly minimal response in the western approaches, their ships, training and techniques were found to be largely unsuited to the rougher waters of the North Atlantic. The USN did form hunter killer groups which tended to operate in the calmer waters of the central and southern Atlantic Oceans.

    The extent to which the USN could be adapted to undertake the primary mission in the North Atlantic is an open question. My opinion, baased on what I have observed in the US Postwar navy is that it would have had some difficulty operating efficiently in rough weather conditions. Certainly their carriers would not have been able to operate very efficiently at all.

    No, he already has them. The majority of naval appropriations occurred in FYs 40-42. There were more or les guranteed proportions of funding to the Navy for the rest of the war which would have been difficult to undo. The US was as driven by inter service rivalries as any other nation. I dont see the USN receiving significantly less funding as a result of the defeat of Japan.

    .

    Again, the decisions on the division of resources for the US forces was made well before hostilities were joined. There was tweaking done at the edges, and in the case of the army huge changes occurred in the force structure as a result of innaccurate estimates on manpower availability (it was not so much a shortage of manpower, as ashortage of trained manpower, and it was thjis....a shortage of trained manpower reserves that dogged the US effort for the entire war) . The US was not a nation constrained by industrial output. it was a nation constrained by manpower, and US comittment in the Pacific, relatively speaking, did not place huge demands on iuts manpower reserves (or more correctly trained manpower). The US may well have built more tanks instead of some of the smaller ships, but this would not have translated into more tank divisions it would have translated in even larger reserves of tanks in the reserve parks.

    As far as shipping is concerned, yes, having additional APBs would give the potential for additional lift capacity, but this was not the primary constraint holding the amphibious fleet ops back. it was manpower and general shipping. Early peace in the pacific wont alter that very much....Allies would retain significant shipping obligations in the pacific, and cessation of hoistitlities does not release manpower to any great extent.
     
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