WW2 USN Strategic Bombing Capability

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by wuzak, Jun 27, 2016.

  1. wuzak

    wuzak Well-Known Member

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    This statement was made in the Best Bomber thread #4:

    So just how capable were they?

    What were the bomb carrying aircraft they could use?
    The TBF Avenger could carry a 2,000lb bomb load. It had a 1,000 mile range. Top speed was 275mph.
    The SBD Dauntless could carry 2,250lb of bombs and had a maximum range of 1,115 miles. Top speed was 255mph.
    The F6F could carry up to 4,000lb of bombs. But at what range and speed?
    Similarly the F4U-4 could carry 4,000lb of bombs. The F4U-1 only 2,000lb of bombs.

    Any others?

    If the USN bombers are within range of Japanese industry the fleet will be in range of ground based Japanese aircraft, exposing the fleet to attack, including kamikaze attacks.

    Meanwhile the bombing aircraft are all quite slow when carrying ordnance. And very vulnerable to fighter defences.
     
  2. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    The USN took on a tactical role most of the time. The doctrine of the day was letting long range bombers at altitude knock out strategic targets.
     
  3. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    I don't know what that has to do with USN Strategic Bombing Capability. By late 1945 there was no Japanese Navy so sure a battleship could park itself off shore and blast away. What about targets out of the range of the ships? I think you're confusing things.
     
  4. fubar57

    fubar57 Well-Known Member

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    Today I learned a battleship was classified as a strategic bomber
     
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  5. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    And that was late in the war - the USN wasn't going to do that 6 months earlier.
     
  6. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    Although a crushing blow to Japanese morale, the bombardment of the Japanese mainland was a matter of convenience. There was still industrial centers out of the range of the battleship's guns.

    From another site...

    "By July and August of 1945, the war in the Pacific was nearing its end. Japan's naval strength had its back broken and was in its final death throes. The Japanese home islands were now under constant attack from American B-29 bombers operating off of Pacific islands. American submarines and aircraft had torn apart Japanese trade routes. The resulting shortage of fuel hampered operations by surviving aircraft and naval vessels. The American Navy was now largely free to sail anywhere in the Pacific. Japan became painfull aware of this in July of 1945 when the US Navy arrived on Japan's doorstep.

    On July 1, the US 3rd Fleet under William Halsey set sail from the Philippine Islands to commence direct attacks on the Japanese Home islands. US Submarines went in first to search for naval mines. Meanwhile, US B-29 and B-24 bombers began reconnaissance flights over Japan to pick out targets. Halsey planned to use Battleships and Cruisers to attack military facilities and factories. Meanwhile, carrier aircraft would strike airfields, ships, and other targets. The 3rd fleet arrived off Japan on July 10 and immediately commenced an attack on navy facilities around Tokyo using carrier aircraft form Task Force 38. On July 14, the task force then sailed north and attacked Honshu and Hokkaido which until that point had managed to avoid damage since they were outside the range of B-29 bombers. 19 warships, 41 merchant ships, and 25 aircraft were claimed destroyed.

    On July 14, the first naval bombardment also took place. Rear Admiral John F. Shafroth took command of Task Unit 34.8.1 which broke off from Task Force 38. Taking place while the carrier aircraft were attacking targets elsewhere, they were ordered to attack iron works in Kamaishi. The unit was made up of the battleships USS South Dakota, Indiana, and Massachusetts. In addition the baltimore class cruisers Quincy and Chicago plus nine destroyers supported the battleships."
     
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  7. fubar57

    fubar57 Well-Known Member

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  8. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    At the 11th hour and again, out of convenience.
     
  9. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    No - if you were so smart your would have realized that the Japanese still had a huge deployed army in China and have indicated they were not going to surrender. If you're going to rant about the cruel use of nukes like some revisionist, your time here will be short.
    Name one
     
  10. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    Good - you actually read my post!
     
  11. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    Bottom line, the use of battleships for strategic ops were a matter of convenience. 6 months earlier Halsey wouldn't have been able to get anywhere close to the mainland. This almost sounds like the argument Billy Mitchell had with the USN after WW1.
     
  12. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    And they still had a navy.
    Have you ever been to those places or seen them on a map??? If you're smart you'll answer you're own question.
     
  13. Reegor

    Reegor Member

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    The Wikipedia article seems to be mainly about the bombardment. But as mentioned the USN did a minor air attack in February, and a major air attack in July - August.
    The best source I found on this is
    Whirlwind: The Air War Against Japan, 1942-1945
    By Barrett Tillman , 2010.

    Here is an official description. I presume it is biased; see Tillman's book for a better assessment.
    FAST CARRIER FORCE PRE-INVASION OPERATIONS AGAINST JAPAN

    After nearly three weeks of replenishment in Leyte Gulf, subsequent to their support of the Okinawa operation, the fast carrier forces of Admiral Halsey's Third Fleet, comprising the greatest mass of sea power ever assembled, proceeded northward on 1 July toward Japan. This huge armada was to complete the destruction of the Japanese fleet, conduct a preinvasion campaign of destruction against every industry and resource contributing to Japan's ability to wage war, and maintain maximum pressure on the Japanese in order to lower their will to fight.

    On 10 July the force arrived in the launching area, 170 miles southeast of Tokyo. On that day strikes were made against airfields and industrial plants in the Tokyo area; 72 planes were destroyed on the ground and extensive damage inflicted on other targets. No attempt was made to conceal the location of the fleet but, in spite of this, little enemy air opposition was encountered.

    Admiral Halsey then moved north to attack northern Honshu and southern Hokkaido on 14-15 July. Aerial strikes dealt a severe blow to critical water transportation facilities between Hokkaido and Honshu, when 5 railroad ferries were sunk and 4 others damaged. Again, little air opposition was encountered by our planes. Simultaneously with these air strikes heavy units of the force shelled Kamaishi and Muroran, causing damage to the steel mills and oil installations in those cities.

    On 17 July the Third Fleet moved south and was joined by units of the British Pacific Fleet under the command of Vice Admiral Rawlings. Admiral Halsey was in over-all command and, on that day, ordered the first combined American-British bombardment of the Japanese homeland. Battleships fired 2000 tons of shells into the coastal area northeast of Tokyo and encountered no enemy opposition during the operation.

    On the following day American and British carrier-based planes struck at enemy fleet units concealed at the Yokosuka naval base in Tokyo Bay. NAGATO, one of two remaining Japanese battleships, was badly damaged. Numerous shore installations and transportation facilities were also hit.

    On 24 and 25 July the combined British and American naval forces launched extensive air strikes against targets in the Inland Sea area. The planes concentrated on the major fleet units still afloat at the Kure naval base. Six major ships were badly damaged and, in all, 22 naval units totaling 258,000 tons were either sunk or put out of action, sounding the death knell of Japanese sea power. Intensive antiaircraft fire was met, and for the first time the enemy mounted aggressive, airborne opposition. A total of 113 enemy aircraft were destroyed during the two-day attack, while only 12 British and American planes were lost.

    A follow-up attack was made on Kure and the Inland Sea area by the carrier-based planes on 28 July. Reconnaissance indicated that the enemy fleet units had been effectively reduced by the previous strikes, but additional bombs were dropped for good measure. Extensive damage was also done to merchant shipping and to vital shore installations, particularly railroad facilities. Strong air opposition was encountered once more, but our aircraft knocked down 21 Japanese planes air-borne and destroyed 123 on the ground for a total of 144 for the day, while our forces lost 36.

    On 30 July the Tokyo area was harassed for the third time in three weeks by aircraft from the fast carriers, our airmen destroying 121 enemy planes during the day and inflicting severe damage on lighter enemy fleet units found in the region. Meanwhile, the fast battleships were shelling the port of Hamamatsu on the east coast of central Honshu, spreading havoc in that area.

    For the first eight days of August the harassed Japanese homeland was given a temporary respite while Admiral Halsey's fleet was riding out a heavy typhoon. On 9 and 10 August, however, the offensive was renewed with another air attack on northern Honshu. It was known that the enemy had withdrawn a large part of his air force to fields in this area, and the strikes were designed to destroy as many of them as possible. The plan was partially successful, for during the two days 397 enemy planes were destroyed and 320 others damaged. Almost no air-borne opposition was encountered, and all but 10 of the destroyed planes were caught on the ground. The British and Americans lost only 34 planes. While these air strikes were in progress, battleships from the Third Fleet bombarded the coastal city of Kamaishi for a second time, inflicting further heavy damage on the steel mills in the area.

    Admiral Halsey's final blow was delivered against Tokyo on 13 August. Airfields and other military installations were the primary targets, with 46 planes being destroyed on the ground. The Japanese tried to get through to the surface ships, but 21 planes were shot down in the futile attempt. The strong protective screen around the fleet was too much for the fading enemy air strength.

    On 15 August the order of Fleet Admiral Nimitz to "cease fire" was received too late to stop the first of the day's air strikes planned for Tokyo. It knocked 30 enemy planes out of the air and destroyed 10 more on the ground. The second strike had also been launched, but it was recalled in time; its pilots were ordered to jettison their bombs and return to their carriers.

    Since 10 July the forces under Admiral Halsey's command had destroyed or damaged 2804 enemy planes, sunk or damaged 148 Japanese combat ships, sunk or damaged 1598 enemy merchant ships, destroyed 195 locomotives, and damaged 109 more. In addition, heavy blows had been struck at industrial targets and war industries, effectively supplementing the bombing by B-29's. This impressive record speaks for itself and helps to explain the sudden collapse of Japan's will to resist. Naval air power, acting in close conjunction with naval surface power and Army bombers, had beaten enemy land-based air power besides inflicting critical losses on naval ships and seriously damaging many shore targets.

    Source: www.shsu.edu/~his_ncp/Compac45.html
     
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  14. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    In July, one month before the war's end.

    In July, one month before the war's end.

    Japan still had a considerable amount of assets to deal with during the Iwo Jima/Okinawa time frame.

    In July, one month before the war's end.

    And in the final months of the war, the Japanese still had over 5 million personnel on the Asian mainland. They also had a considerable amount of aircraft there, too - both Naval and Army.
     
  15. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Negative, read a few history books and come back to the discussion.
     
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  16. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Don't trifle with me, ass-clown.
     
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  17. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    yes, azz-wipe...she strayed too close to the home island and nearly got her ass handed to her by Japanese forces, right?
    So there you have it...by Spring of 1945, the Japanese were still a serious force to contend with and no freakin' way a Battleship group is just going to steam up to the coast of Japan and start lobbing shells all over without getting checked up hard.

    And last time I checked, a Carrier was not a Battlewagon.
     
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  18. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    First off, NO battleship shelled the mainland...max. range is 27 miles, 25 optimum...so stick your "smirk" up your chute and STFU.

    Secondly, read up on TF58's ops for that point in time and see that the main objective was to intervene Japanese support efforts, not attack Japan's mainland.

    So again, take the attitude and bury it as far up your back pocket as it'll go...
     
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  19. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    So nearly sinking the Franklin is "couldn't do much?"

    No Battleship got within shelling range of Japan proper until July '45...I don't give an eff what you think, do or say.

    Facts dictate a much different picture.
     
  20. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    ok, let's give you the benefit of the doubt.

    You claim that the USN shelled the Japanese coast in February of 1945.

    Name the Battleships that shelled the Japanese coast and what their targets were.

    What the the determined damage to said targets?

    And by the way, when using the term "Nippon", you would use the term "Nipponese" when referring in a possessive sense. Like "Nipponese aircraft", " Nipponese Navy", etc.
     
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