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pearl harbor intelligence

Discussion in 'War in the Pacific' started by denny, Nov 13, 2016.

  1. denny

    denny Member

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    I assume much of what Japan knew about the harbor came from Japanese Sympathizers/Citizens that were in Hawaii.?
    Was Yamamoto mislead about how often or how long the aircraft carriers were in port, or was it uncommon for them all to be out to sea at one time like that.?
    If the carriers were to leave port before the attack, could these people have contacted "Yamamoto" somehow to give warning.?
    I am wondering if Yamamoto ever gave any (historical) mention of the possibility of important ships not being there, and what it would mean if the attack was a "success" over a limited number and less desirable type of boats.?
    Thank You
     
  2. OpanaPointer

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

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    No espionage by Japanese residents of Hawaii was ever reported. Takao Yoshikawa was sent by the Imperial Japanese Navy to ostensibly be an aide in the Japanese consulate at Honolulu, but his real job was to track the movements of USN ships and learn about the defenses around the base. (He was aided by a former naval officer already in the staff.)

    The Nagumo Kido Butai ("Striking Force" led by Adm. Nagumo) were notified that the two carriers currently at Pearl were not in the harbor the day before the attack was launched.

    The orders to the Kido Butai was that four battleships and four carriers, in that order of preference, were to be attack as first priority. Without the carriers being in port the attackers concentrated on the battleships.

    More information on this can be found here.
     
  3. denny

    denny Member

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    Wow...OK.
    I would have thought more attention would have been placed on the carriers.....
    Thanks For The Info
     
  4. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    Both sides still thought of battleships as the more important vessel at that point in time and indeed for some time after.
     
  5. OpanaPointer

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

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    Well, there were only three USN carriers in the Pacific at the time, and one was on the West Coast. There were a lot of battleships in port that day and EVERY IJN torpedo plane pilot reported he'd dropped on a BB. There was some embarrassment when they were informed for their actual targets.
     
  6. OpanaPointer

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

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    Opinion was split on that, of course. Halsey and Brown were obviously in the carrier camp, but Adm. Pye was also leaning that way despite being the head of the battleship force in the Pacific.
     
  7. denny

    denny Member

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    I thought The Japanese placed a fairly high value on their carrier fleet. Which, of course, Does Noe mean they did not value their Battle Ships more, but.....didn't they have as many or more carriers than usa and england combined.?
     
  8. OpanaPointer

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

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    They had carriers, yes, and the carrier-oriented naval people loved them. But they also built the three Musashi-type super battleships, 65,000 tons and 18.1 inch guns. (Shinano was converted to a carrier before she was finished as a BB, but she had a short career.) As late as 1944 a Congressman had "Carrier vs. Battleship" read into the Congressional Record. That work presented "both sides" of the controversy long after carriers were demonstrating a predominance in the naval arena.
     
  9. denny

    denny Member

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    I see, i guess that proves the wheels of progress DO turn slow. :)
     
  10. OpanaPointer

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

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    They were huge investments and national icons, both the battleships and the carriers. William Halsey saw the handwriting on the wall and became a aviation cadet at the age most enlisted men retired. Others believed to the day they died that the battle line would still be the deciding factor in a war.
     
  11. steverodgers801

    steverodgers801 Member

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    the dive bombers were given priority for the carriers and were told to bomb, bomb and bomb again.
     
  12. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    Well, yeah...The 250 kilogram bomb carried by the D3As will only annoy a battleship.
     
  13. OpanaPointer

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

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    And when they left there wasn't a carrier afloat in the harbor.
     
  14. denny

    denny Member

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    I did not realize, 'til just a few days ago, and now again on This Forum, that the shallow depth of the harbor aided in recovering several of the big ships.
     
  15. OpanaPointer

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

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    Pearl Harbor:
    Why, How, Fleet Salvage and Final Appraisal

    by

    Vice Admiral Homer N. Wallin
    USN (Retired)

    Written by the man who ran the salvage operation.
     
    rkline56 likes this.
  16. rkline56

    rkline56 USS Oklahoma City CG5

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    Waiting for my salutes to reset, OP. You are the Professor of all things WITP. Always great reading, the humor is exemplary as well.
     
  17. OpanaPointer

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

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    Not all things. I can't figure out tokko tactics, they just baffle me.
     
  18. rkline56

    rkline56 USS Oklahoma City CG5

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    My homework, God another assignment.
     
  19. OpanaPointer

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

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    "Kamikaze" was the nickname. "Kikusui" (special attack) was the strategic name. "Tokko" was the tactic.
     
  20. OpanaPointer

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

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    BTW, there are rumblings that the Magic books are going to be republished.
     

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