Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo...

Discussion in 'Old Threads' started by bronzewhaler82, Mar 13, 2004.

  1. bronzewhaler82

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    On the 18th April 1942 - four Months after the Japanese Attacked Pearl Harbour 16 B-25 Mitchell Bombers launched an attack on Tokyos industrial sector from the carrier USS Hornet 600 miles off the coast of Japan. The B-25s were NOT designed to be carrier based and they had to be cramed up on deck in their exact order of taekoff - the aircraft were lashed to the decks for 2 weeks at sea (getting checked over regularly) unfortunately they had to launch early as a Japanese patrol boat spotted them - the bombers had to have their weight dramatically reduced (broomsticks were used for guns!) to ensure the planes would clear the carriers deck - the crews practiced the takeoff many times. Despite the odds they all got off the deck and sucessfully raided Tokyo and ditched their aircraft over the Chinese boarder as planned and most escaped back home to the states ( A few were captured by the japs and others by Russians)

    The raid was dubbed as a complete success though 8 Airmen lost their lives.

    This raid was more designed to scare the japs and boost the morale of the US rather than actually cause much damage but my question is this...was this just an attempt for the Americans to score points and a waste of time and an unessasary risk to these brave mens lives or was it a sensational act of heroism?

    Opinions please 8)

    (No crazed patriots please - only sensible opinions ;) )
     
  2. Crazy

    Crazy Member

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    In retrospect, I feel that it was more of a propaganda-boost attempt for our boys than an actual attempt to hurt the Empire. I certainly wouldn't call it an unnecessary risk of the lives of the men involved, but the mission's intent (in my opinion) of scaring and lowering the morale in Japan failed. At least, it was unsucessful enough that Japan didn't surrender, necessitating the use of the two atom bombs.
     
  3. cheddar cheese

    cheddar cheese Active Member

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    well, if it was an attempt to boost morale, then it was an act of heroism as - in my opinion - morale is one of the greatest things an army can have in its arsenal 8)
     
  4. the lancaster kicks ass

    the lancaster kicks ass Active Member

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    na, that honour goes to suprise.....................
     
  5. bronzewhaler82

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    Well i think the Japanese were pretty surprised! :lol: :lol:
     
  6. the lancaster kicks ass

    the lancaster kicks ass Active Member

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    hehe.....................
     
  7. Rafe35

    Rafe35 Member

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    After mostly the men of B-25 Pilots Crews were capture by Japanese, I think only 3 men(or wasnt 4?) were sent to death from a "trial"
     
  8. bronzewhaler82

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    Most of the crews escaped into China - one or two were injured during crash landings - one of the crews got a bit lost and put their plane down in Russian territory - the Russians were not involved in the war at that point so they arrested the Americans but later let them go (I wonder why? :) )

    All in all 9 Americans were captured by the Japs.
    4 of them died from mistreatment (i.e torture) 3 of them were executed another died of Malnutrition and the remaining prisoner - Lt Robert Hite was released after 40 months imprisonment - though i'm not sure why he was let go..bit of a mystery really - I didn't think the Japs had a habit of letting their prisoners go (who does?) - anyone else know?
     
  9. R Pope

    R Pope Member

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    If you understand the Japanese concept of "Losing face" then you will see that the Doolittle raid was a great blow to Japan. It was never intended to do anything else.
     
  10. Rafe35

    Rafe35 Member

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    I think one of the crew who bailed out and his chute would not open, so he died and I can't remember his name.
     
  11. cheddar cheese

    cheddar cheese Active Member

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    interesing stuff....
     
  12. GermansRGeniuses

    GermansRGeniuses Active Member

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    so is infinite (virtually) manpower, easy to produce weapons of war, a not as crazy as hitler dictator, and forcing to join the army!

    Reichsmarschall Batista
     
  13. cheddar cheese

    cheddar cheese Active Member

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    :lol: well yes......
     
  14. the lancaster kicks ass

    the lancaster kicks ass Active Member

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    and the lancaster...............................
     
  15. bronzewhaler82

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    I read recently that the American authorities claim the raid did more than just upset the Japs sense of honour...apparently it eased up the fighting in certain regions because the Japs pulled large numbers of their fighters back to defend their capital (Tokyo) from further attack - a very useful thing for the Americans who had a few problems with the Jap airforce at the very beginning of the war

    So therefore you could argue that it had more than a demoralising effect on the Japs...i can't say for sure if the americans just made that info up to justify it (i don't think they'd bother) but it seems plausable to me :confused:
     
  16. cheddar cheese

    cheddar cheese Active Member

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    and the hurricane.......
     
  17. jj1982

    jj1982 Member

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    well, perhaps this is a case of the american aircrew showing great heroism and bravery to make thier superiours look good???? Did the attack make any real difference to the war effort? Did it save allied lives? Did it kill and maim innocent civilians? It sounds to me as if it did very litlle but to give the americans a chance to parade and spread propagada about how great and effective they were! This is my opinion so feel free to shoot it down....call me anti american (Bronzewhaler, not a word!) or whatever.....
     
  18. cheddar cheese

    cheddar cheese Active Member

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  19. bronzewhaler82

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    Sorry old friend but it has to be said - you hate Americans more than the Japs do! :lol: I said at the start of the thread NO crazed Patriots....although you aren't a yank you certainly qualify as a crazed patriot...you crazy welshman... :lol: anyway...

    It was a bit of a show-off mission but you certainly can't overlook the amazing flying skills and courage of the airmen involved...they were told right at the start (just to show how much faith the americans have in their own abilities) that most of them wouldn't get back alive and that cos it was a volunteer mission they could drop out at any time and nothing would happen to them...most of them had families back home with young children...but not a single one quit at all - they all got through - being able to lift the B-25 off the deck of the carriers was actually deemed IMPOSSIBLE by some skeptics but they all got airbourne and hit the target...in answer to your query about wether it had an effect on the war...like i said it withdrew the jap airforce for the rest of the war so they could keep an eye on Tokyo (part of the reason the yanks suffered heavy losses bombing Tokyo after that) but most of all it really really really scared the crap out of the Japanese who up til that point considered themselves tight as a drum and almost untouchable by anyone...its just like they say...always hit your enemy where he thinks hes safest :evil2:
     
  20. cheddar cheese

    cheddar cheese Active Member

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    wow, good points 8)
     
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