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New Movie Alert! "Midway", coming November 2019!

Discussion in 'WWII Films & TV' started by George Patton, Jan 18, 2019.

  1. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    Thanks for the correction.
     
  2. Stuka1942

    Stuka1942 Member

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    That's funny...The British 18th Division was on it's way to the Med,

    So, you point out ONE exception, and that is supposed to negate my entire statement about "leftovers"? Is the suggestion that the Brit. Divs. (& misc. other smaller contingents) sent to Malaya/Singapore and Burma were good & fought well ??? And if you think so, then THAT is funny.
     
  3. RichTO90

    RichTO90 Well-Known Member

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    Further to that the 18th (East Anglian) Infantry Division was actually a 2d Line Territorial division, formed on 30 September 1939. They had in reality over two years of training, were fully manned and equipped, and were actually slated for movement to Egypt and Eighth Army 28 October 1941 and were diverted en route when they reached South Africa. There is little evidence of poor leadership in the division, except at the most senior level, most of its problems on the battlefield, especially the expereince of the 53 Brigade was due to it being thrown into combat after 11 weeks at sea.
     
  4. RichTO90

    RichTO90 Well-Known Member

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    What was sent was what was available in the emergency. The 18th Infantry Division was considered good enough for overseas deployment, which is why they were deployed overseas. Ditto the Australians and the Indians. What is funny is the apparent assumption that they were sent because they were "leftovers"?
     
  5. Stuka1942

    Stuka1942 Member

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    Makes no sense...If the primary objective is to sink the US carriers...Why draw them off somewhere else? It defeats the purpose.

    Not what I said. I said spread U.S. assets out, so you increase your chances of winning the big sea battle. If you sink the CV's, great, and if you don't but you sink enough other U.S.N. & down enough planes, that equals a big victory. Besides, the Japanese historically did this (the attempt to spread U.S. assets) by the move towards the Aleutians. Nimitz could largely ignore that and concentrate on Midway, because of the codebreaking intel he had.
     
  6. RichTO90

    RichTO90 Well-Known Member

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    It's also not just one exception. The Australian 8th Infantry Division were not "leftovers" either. Formed in July 1940, they had been planned for deployment to the Middle East, but shifted to defense of Malaya in February 1941. The 3 Indian Corps was also not a "leftover"...it was formed 16 April 1941 in Malaya with the mission of defending against a Japanese attack. Its 9th and 11th Division were formed 15 September 1940.

    So far by my count that is five exceptions. :D
     
  7. Stuka1942

    Stuka1942 Member

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    Makes no sense...If the primary objective is to sink the US carriers...Why draw them off somewhere else? It defeats the purpose.

    Not what I meant. I meant spread U.S. assets out, so you increase your chances of winning the big sea battle. If you sink the CV's, great, and if you don't but you sink enough other U.S.N. & down enough planes, that equals a big victory. Besides, the Japanese historically did this (the attempt to spread U.S. assets) by the move towards the Aleutians. Nimitz could largely ignore that and concentrate on Midway, because of the codebreaking intel he had.

    There is more to intelligence than code-breaking...

    Yup, I'm well aware...But, the other intel gave no real assurance. From earlier in this thread, we have agreed that the code-breaking intel was gold, because it shortened the Pacific War by allowing the U.S. to take the initiative away from the Japanese much sooner. It was gold, because it had been CONFIRMED, (using the sly strategem of signalling that Midway's water supply had a problem, which the Japanese then repeated, thus verifying that Midway was indeed the subject of earlier signals about Japanese intentions). Nimitz could bank on the Code-breaking result.

    all of which pointed to Midway-Oahu as the target.

    (here we are referring to the NON-codebreaking intel.) For me, if I'm Nimitz, this is not good enough. The intentions might be at Oahu or Midway. (You might as well say intentions are somewhere in the Pacific) If I'm Nimitz & I don't have the codebreaking bonus, I cannot confidently concentrate my forces on one target, which is largely why victory was possible at Midway. I cannot afford to be wrong. I cannot bank on it. Admirals are generally expected to be conservative with their nation's very expensive & hard to replace assets, like BB's & CV's (a "fleet in being"). In the early months in the Pacific, the Philippines, Saipan, and Wake were sacrificed. Here, if I'm Nimitz w/o Code-breaking, I add Midway as a sacrifice (token resistance). Halsey wouldn't like it (but Halsey was impulsive - which can be good or bad, but it isn't always responsible). As soon as more major fleet units arrived, (some considerable months away) the U.S. might begin to take away the initiative. Maybe the first amphibious landing by 1st Marine Div. would be at Midway (not Guadalcanal). I have been pointed to several references (and thanks for that), but if the previous threads are based on info from those references, I've seen nothing that would fundamentally change my viewpoint on this situation, if I'm Nimitz.
     
  8. Stuka1942

    Stuka1942 Member

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    It's also not just one exception. The Australian 8th Infantry Division were not "leftovers" either. Formed in July 1940, they had been planned for deployment to the Middle East, but shifted to defense of Malaya in February 1941. The 3 Indian Corps was also not a "leftover"...it was formed 16 April 1941 in Malaya with the mission of defending against a Japanese attack. Its 9th and 11th Division were formed 15 September 1940.

    And did they all generally comport themselves well in battle? (Malaya/Singapore not, Burma, not) If not, then they were "3rd stringers" (i.e. Home Defense Britain = 1st, Med. = 2nd, inactive Pac. = 3rd) Do we really have to nitpick about nomenclature? To me 3rd stringers = leftovers. You are generally going to send your lesser units to the inactive region. When I make a broad statement, it is a broad statement.
     
  9. Stuka1942

    Stuka1942 Member

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    What exactly baffles you...

    The Horri book mentioned, was a revelation, because it is a much clearer picture of the Japanese high-level road to war, than any of the Western literature that preceded it. It was written by a Japanese with access to Japanese documents. What baffled me was that the highest-level decisions could be made by a group of supposedly responsible people, WITHOUT saying what they actually thought. One would think that the gravity of the situation would dictate that they do so...but they didn't. I challenge anyone to read this, and not reach the same conclusion.
     
  10. RichTO90

    RichTO90 Well-Known Member

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    I'm sorry, but what does that have to do with anything? You claimed they were "leftovers". Now, apparently, you are defining "leftovers" as any unit that does not "generally comport themselves well in battle"? How are you supposed to know, before they enter battle?

    Huh? I'm sorry, but do you think they were planning a baseball season? For one thing, your dichotomy is, to put it bluntly, silly. If the Home Army was the "1st string" why then in August 1940 did they send much of the "1st String's" strongest assets, 7 RTR and its Matilda I tanks to Egypt for COMPASS? If the Med was "2d String" why then divert the 18th ID, which was meant for it, to a "3d String" Pacific?

    It makes little sense and worse, ignores the reality of the history. The 18th, 46th, and 59th were all 2d Line Territorial divisions that served overseas. The 18th was intended for the Med, but went to Malaya and was destroyed. The 46th went to North Africa and Italy and served out the war. The 59th went to Normandy and was eventually disbanded to provide replacements for 21st Army Group. None were 1st, 2d, or 3d "string" or deployed in any particular way for that reason.

    Apparently yes, since we keep having to question your nomenclature.

    Let me get this straight. So given the assumption, widely held by strategists in Britain and the United States, that Japan was going to attack British and American interests in Southeast Asia and the Pacific, you believe the proper response would have been for them to send "lesser units" to defend it? Indeed, it seems when you make broad statements you intend to make them broad enough to be essentially meaningless.
     
  11. RichTO90

    RichTO90 Well-Known Member

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    Um, no, only in retrospect was it "gold" and at the time Nimitz could not "bank on the Code-breaking result", but he did gamble on it. The idea that U.S. code-breaking somehow led inevitably to Nimitz "setting a trap" for the Japanese is simplistic in the extreme. See A Priceless Advantage: U.S. Navy Communications Intelligence and the Battles of Coral Sea, Midway, and the Aleutians, especially Part II and also especially James D'Angelo's analysis in Victory at Midway, pp. 28-48 where he dissects the interplay between HYPO, OP-20-G, CINCPAC, and COMINCH.
     
  12. Stuka1942

    Stuka1942 Member

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    With Pacific War clouds gathering, it is not a great idea to send lesser units, but that was the tendency. Churchill gambled in 1940 sending his few tank units to the desert, instead of staying home. This was an exception. The blooded and better divisions were usually not the ones sent to the inactive Pacific. The divisions that were not blooded or already shown as better, were less likely to comport themselves well in battle - a reasonable assumption to make ahead of time. I weary of this....
     
  13. RichTO90

    RichTO90 Well-Known Member

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    How do you know they were "lesser units"? What "greater units" were there that were available?

    No, it wasn't an exception, it was just the first time it was done. The gamble was repeated again in April 1941 with the TIGER convoy. And again in August-November 1942 with the TORCH decision. And by the Americans in August 1942 with WATCHTOWER.

    Which blooded and better divisions were available to send to the inactive Pacific in 1941?

    Yet again, which divisions that were blooded or already showed themselves better were available? And yes, inexperienced units do generally tend not to do well in their initial battles, which is a reasonable assumption...do you think that was not understood then? Or do you know of some pool of better blooded divisions that was available?

    Yes, I imagine all that dodging and weaving avoiding things does get wearisome. I know I'm getting weary of the effort trying to correct you and pin you down on your assumptions. :D
     
  14. RichTO90

    RichTO90 Well-Known Member

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    Well, I rather doubt there will be an answer, so I'll try to answer it myself. First, even though they would not be very practical in the Pacific, the armoured divisions:

    1st and 7th were in the Western Desert, in the aftermath of CRUSADER when the Japanese attacked.
    2d was destroyed in the Western Desert in April 1941.
    10th was in Palestine, formed 1 August 1941 from the 1st Cavalry Division...and as of the Japanese attack was still training, which activity was hampered by its almost complete lack of tanks.
    Guards (organized 17 June 1941), 6th (formed 12 September 1940), 8th (formed 4 November 1940), 9th (formed 1 December 1940), 11th (formed 9 March 1941), and 42d (formed 1 November 1941) were all in Britain in various states of organization, training, and equipment.

    All the armoured divisions, except the 1st and 7th (and the few remnants of the 2d) were un-blooded.

    The infantry divisions:

    The prewar "Regular" divisions were the 1st-5th in Britain, all of which were more or less blooded in France, but afterwards had been heavily relied upon for drafts of officers and NCO cadres for new formations. Of them, the 2d was already slated for India and was in fact under War Office command from 12 November 1941, retraining and re-equipping for service in the Pacific. The sudden Japanese attack delayed their embarkation due to ship scarcity and the uncertain situation in the Indian Ocean, which was a big reason the 18th Division was diverted mid-Ocean from the Middle East to India and then Malaya. The 2d left for India on 15 April and arrived on 7 June 1942. Of the others, the 1st went to the Middle East in February 1943, the 3d landed in Normandy on 6 June 1944, the 4th followed the 1st to the Middle East in March 1943, and the 5th was chosen to reinforce India in early January 1942.

    So of the five, one was already on the way, a second soon followed, and the remaining three made up the core of the Home Army defending Britain until 1943, after the tide had changed.

    The 6th, 7th, and 8th Divisions were formed from various garrisons in the Middle East on the outbreak of war and were fully occupied in operations there. Sadly, most of the few blooded elements they contained were lost in Crete. So no blooded divisions available from this source.

    The only blooded (in the French Campaign) Territorial Army divisions were the 42d, 44th, 48th, 50th, and 51st. Of them, the 42d was converted to an armoured division on 11 November 1941 (see above), the 44th went to the Middle East in May 1942, the 48th was reduced to a Lower Establishment Division on 15 November 1941 in order to provide personnel for other active service divisions, the 50th went to Egypt in April 1941, and the 51st was so well blooded in France that most of it wound up in PW Cages for the duration. The famous 51st Highland Division that fought most of the war was actually the 9th Highland Division, which like the 18th was a 2d Line Territorial Division. So only one blooded division for Malaya, the 44th.

    The 12th, 23d, and 46th Divisions were blooded in a sense in France, since they took casualties, but not in a good way. they were only partly organized and equipped and were used as labor and LOC troops, so gained little or no experience as divisions. The 12th was disbanded on 11 July 1940, the 23d on 30 June 1940, and only the 46th was retained, going to the Middle East in January 1943. In theory, the 46th could have gone to India, but it was unlikely to have been any different than the 18th.
     
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  15. R Leonard

    R Leonard Member

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    Don't get many opportunities :)
     
  16. Mussolini

    Mussolini Gaming Guru WW2|ORG Editor

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    I get the feeling this is going to be Pearl Harbor all over again...more about the love story then the actual battle and the men who fought in it. I miss those old style movies where there was no love interest/romance thrown in.

    Pearl Harbor preview looked amazing, the movie was trash.
    Midway preview looks mostly amazing (the love story makes it into the preview), so expecting it to be trash too.
     
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  17. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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    The conspiracy fodder in "Pearl Harbor" got me a bit steamed.
     

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