Pearl Harbour 12/7/41


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Profile Chris S
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Message 1176252 - Posted: 7 Dec 2011, 11:24:26 UTC

Pearl Harbour was 70 years ago today, which brought USA into WWII.

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Message 1176263 - Posted: 7 Dec 2011, 12:44:40 UTC

All US Carriers from the pacific fleet where convinient on manouvers that day 70Y ago.

Can you imagine if the enterprise, the hornet and the essex where sunk on that day together with the Arizona?

I think that the us pacific fleet would be crippled for years, and even Australia would be in danger.

Japan would rule in the pacific for longer than it happen.

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Message 1176302 - Posted: 7 Dec 2011, 16:19:23 UTC - in response to Message 1176263.

Actually, I don't think (prior to the war) the US had three carriers in any single port, including Pearl Harbor, at any time (except perhaps Norfolk while working up).

At the time of Pearl Harbor, the US had a total of 7 carriers in service, plus 5 in construction. Three were in the Pacific, and four were in the Atlantic.

The Lexington had left Pearl Harbor on 12/5 -- to bring additional planes to Midway.

The Enterprise was nearing Pearl Harbor returning from a mission to bring planes to Wake Island. The Enterprise was close enough to launch planes toward Pearl Harbor. Of the 18 planes launched in time to be over Pearl Harbor during the attack, one was shot down by friendly fire, four were shot down by the Japanese and one was damaged and crash landed. The remaining 12 landed at bases on Oahu.


The Saratoga was in San Diego, just post dry dock work in Washington (Bremerton).

The Ranger was on the east coast, returning from a tour in the Caribbean.

The Yorktown was at the naval base in Norfolk, VA

The Wasp (a new ship just commissioned the previous year, was in Bermuda.

The Hornet (an even newer ship, commissioned in October 41) was in training exercises out of Norfolk.


All US Carriers from the pacific fleet where convinient on manouvers that day 70Y ago.



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Message 1176304 - Posted: 7 Dec 2011, 16:45:26 UTC - in response to Message 1176302.

no need to so over wraught when He meant all "active" US pacific Fleet carriers... Obviously the Atlantic fleet wasn't going to be in Pearl so their really wasn't a need to be such a zealot over him missing a couple of words in his thoughts
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Message 1176336 - Posted: 7 Dec 2011, 20:42:04 UTC

While surfing for info on the 70th anniversary earlier today, came across this poem which I felt appropriate for the past,present & future......

A Soldier Died Today

He was getting old and paunchy
And his hair was falling fast,
And he sat around the Legion,
Telling stories of the past.

Of a war that he once fought in
And the deeds that he had done,
In his exploits with his buddies;
They were heroes, every one.

And 'tho sometimes to his neighbors
His tales became a joke,
All his buddies listened quietly
For they knew whereof he spoke.

But we'll hear his tales no longer,
For ol' Bob has passed away,
And the world's a little poorer
For a soldier died today.

He won't be mourned by many,
Just his children and his wife.
For he lived an ordinary,
Very quiet sort of life..

He held a job and raised a family,
Going quietly on his way;
And the world won't note his passing,
'Tho a soldier died today.

When politicians leave this earth,
Their bodies lie in state,
While thousands note their passing,
And proclaim that they were great.

Papers tell of their life stories
From the time that they were young
But the passing of a soldier
Goes unnoticed, and unsung.

Is the greatest contribution
To the welfare of our land,
Some jerk who breaks his promise
And cons his fellow man?

Or the ordinary fellow
Who in times of war and strife,
Goes off to serve his country
And offers up his life?

The politician's stipend
And the style in which he lives,
Are often disproportionate,
To the service that he gives.

While the ordinary soldier,
Who offered up his all,
Is paid off with a medal
And perhaps a pension, small.

It's so easy to forget them,
For it is so many times
That our Bobs and Jims and Johnnys,
Went to battle, but we know,

It is not the politicians
With their compromise and ploys,
Who won for us the freedom
That our country now enjoys.

Should you find yourself in danger,
With your enemies at hand,
Would you really want some cop-out,
With his ever waffling stand?

Or would you want a soldier--
His home, his country, his kin,
Just a common soldier,
Who would fight until the end.

He was just a common soldier,
And his ranks are growing thin,
But his presence should remind us
We may need his like again.

For when countries are in conflict,
We find the soldier's part
Is to clean up all the troubles
That the politicians start.

If we cannot do him honor
While he's here to hear the praise,
Then at least let's give him homage
At the ending of his days.

Perhaps just a simple headline
In the paper that might say:
"OUR COUNTRY IS IN MOURNING,
A SOLDIER DIED TODAY."



.....Lest We Forget.......

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Message 1176339 - Posted: 7 Dec 2011, 20:46:27 UTC

Freedom Isn't Free

I watched the flag pass by one day.
It fluttered in the breeze
A young soldier saluted it, and then
He stood at ease.
I looked at him in uniform
So young, so tall, so proud
With hair cut square and eyes alert
He'd stand out in any crowd.
I thought how many men like him
Had fallen through the years.
How many died on foreign soil?
How many mothers' tears?
How many Pilots' planes shot down?
How many foxholes were soldiers' graves?
No Freedom isn't free

I heard the sound of taps one night,
When everything was still.
I listened to the bugler play
And felt a sudden chill.
I wondered just how many times
That taps had meant "Amen"
When a flag had draped a coffin
of a brother or a friend.
I thought of all the children,
Of the mothers and the wives,
Of fathers, sons and husbands
With interrupted lives.
I thought about a graveyard at the
bottom of the sea
Of unmarked graves in Arlington.....
No -- Freedom isn't free!!

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Message 1176340 - Posted: 7 Dec 2011, 20:48:16 UTC - in response to Message 1176263.

All US Carriers from the pacific fleet where convinient on manouvers that day 70Y ago.


Convenient for who?
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Message 1176342 - Posted: 7 Dec 2011, 20:54:58 UTC

Hmmmmmnnnnnn...wondered why this was in politics.....

...now I know why!
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Message 1176343 - Posted: 7 Dec 2011, 20:59:28 UTC
Last modified: 7 Dec 2011, 21:29:00 UTC

I wasn't sure where best to put it Sirius. As it was an act of war this seemed to be the best place. It was meant to be a remembrance of those who lost their lives. If it turns out differently then I will ask for it to be closed.

Late edit

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Profile Sirius B
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Message 1176347 - Posted: 7 Dec 2011, 21:18:34 UTC - in response to Message 1176343.

Thanks Chris. It's nice to see respect for the fallen.
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Message 1176351 - Posted: 7 Dec 2011, 21:38:18 UTC

I wouldn't be here but for the war. Dad never would have met Mom.

He graduated Case with a BSEE in 1940. He was working in a defense allied company, but not in a critical position. After some deferments, he was sent to Quantico for basic training in the Marine Corps. Somewhere in the process they screwed up a medical and classified him 4F. He finished Basic and they sent him home. He got a job with the Navy Department at the Navel Ordinance test station Washington DC. That is how he came to meet my Mom who also worked for the Navy Department as a clerk. I still have her hand written list of the 50 destroyers in the lend lease program with the restricted stamp on it. The only time Dad ever talked about anything he did there was one time when we were watching Tora! Tora! Tora! on the TV and it came to the scene where the electronic arming switches failed on the planes at the battle for Midway. He told me heads rolled.

Many years later I became friends with Chuck Gill. Chuck was a kid in 1941, living on Hawaii with his dad who worked as a doctor. He had a couple of spent slugs and part of a Japanese aircraft from that day. He told me soon after the attack his family was classified as refugees and shipped to the mainland.

It isn't that far removed from today. We all owe a debt of gratitude to those that came before us.



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Message 1176369 - Posted: 7 Dec 2011, 23:19:32 UTC - in response to Message 1176351.

I wouldn't be here but for the war. Dad never would have met Mom.

He graduated Case with a BSEE in 1940. He was working in a defense allied company, but not in a critical position. After some deferments, he was sent to Quantico for basic training in the Marine Corps. Somewhere in the process they screwed up a medical and classified him 4F. He finished Basic and they sent him home. He got a job with the Navy Department at the Navel Ordinance test station Washington DC. That is how he came to meet my Mom who also worked for the Navy Department as a clerk. I still have her hand written list of the 50 destroyers in the lend lease program with the restricted stamp on it. The only time Dad ever talked about anything he did there was one time when we were watching Tora! Tora! Tora! on the TV and it came to the scene where the electronic arming switches failed on the planes at the battle for Midway. He told me heads rolled.

Many years later I became friends with Chuck Gill. Chuck was a kid in 1941, living on Hawaii with his dad who worked as a doctor. He had a couple of spent slugs and part of a Japanese aircraft from that day. He told me soon after the attack his family was classified as refugees and shipped to the mainland.

It isn't that far removed from today. We all owe a debt of gratitude to those that came before us.




Gary, It's always interesting to read these type anecdotes.

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Message 1176380 - Posted: 8 Dec 2011, 2:14:28 UTC - in response to Message 1176340.

All US Carriers from the pacific fleet where convinient on manouvers that day 70Y ago.


Convenient for who?

OK think about it this way. The carriers survived Pearl Harbors bombing. Let's go back and have the battle ships out of pearl as well. What difference would they have made in the war? Very little since the air plane was discovered to be the weapon of the day. Battle ships were slow lumbering barges with enormous guns that needed to be withing 25 miles of a target to do any good. Air craft and aircraft carriers were the weapon that made the difference.

Truth be told if the battleships were that important to the fleet why weren't we furiously making more or at least bringing those sunk back online. Because they were of little use to anyone that's why. Think about the Axis big boats; they were all eventually tracked down and unceremoniously sunk. Do you think the Japanese would have left ours floating for long? I doubt it. They were and are to easy of a target.
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Message 1176386 - Posted: 8 Dec 2011, 2:55:26 UTC - in response to Message 1176380.

AS were the Japanese big ships. Much has been speculated on this subject.
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Message 1176438 - Posted: 8 Dec 2011, 7:40:07 UTC - in response to Message 1176304.

Fair enough -- I wasn't overwraught, just overly pedantic <smile>.

That being said, if the Japanese had sunk the Essex, that would have been an impressive feat -- it was still under construction. <smile>.

The Japanese were very much hoping to knock out one or two carriers -- and had they been able to do that, the Pacific War would have been much longer.

One thing, for sure though, the Americans would have redeployed the Atlantic carriers to the Pacific Coast.

But the Japanese did miss out on two very real targets at Pearl -- the very large oil storage bunkers, and the extensive repair facilities. Had those been destroyed or at least badly damaged, that too would have changed the dynamics of the Pacific War.

Not having the carriers to attack -- that was a matter outside the Japanese control, not dealing with the repair facilities and the oil storage -- that was (from the Japanese point of view) a major strategic error.



no need to so over wraught when He meant all "active" US pacific Fleet carriers... Obviously the Atlantic fleet wasn't going to be in Pearl so their really wasn't a need to be such a zealot over him missing a couple of words in his thoughts

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Message 1176439 - Posted: 8 Dec 2011, 7:42:46 UTC - in response to Message 1176252.

Hey, it was (and is) Pearl Harbor. The British had their chance in Hawaii during the 19th century -- they missed it and can keep the 'u' for themselves <giggle>.

Pearl Harbour was 70 years ago today, which brought USA into WWII.

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Message 1176440 - Posted: 8 Dec 2011, 7:55:36 UTC - in response to Message 1176380.

The thing is, most naval planners in the 30's and into 1941 still were 'big gun' folks. Naval aviation was just coming truly lethal. Even the Japanese were still building big gun ships -- the two largest battleships ever built were just coming on line in Japan.

As an example of the transition -- the successful British attack on Italian cruisers and battleships in harbor (I think it was at Taranto) was carried out by *bi-planes*). That was something the Japanese studied for the Pearl Harbor attack.

Oh, one more note, many (most?) of the battleships sunk at Pearl WERE repaired and brought back online.

But battleships were definitely in 'fading glory' mode even though the most modern of them were as fast as the carriers, they simply didn't have that long distance striking power of the aircraft carrier.

The one place where surface ships did matter was during the battles around Guadalcanal -- the Japanese surface ships made that battle a really long battle of attrition.




Truth be told if the battleships were that important to the fleet why weren't we furiously making more or at least bringing those sunk back online. Because they were of little use to anyone that's why. Think about the Axis big boats; they were all eventually tracked down and unceremoniously sunk. Do you think the Japanese would have left ours floating for long? I doubt it. They were and are to easy of a target.

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Message 1176481 - Posted: 8 Dec 2011, 11:36:39 UTC

As an example of the transition -- the successful British attack on Italian cruisers and battleships in harbor (I think it was at Taranto) was carried out by *bi-planes*). That was something the Japanese studied for the Pearl Harbor attack.


It was on 11th November 1940, and was carried out by Fairey Swordfish nicknamed "The Stringbag". They were armed with aerial torpedoes and bombs, and were launched from HMS Illustrious.

taranto

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Message 1176547 - Posted: 8 Dec 2011, 19:41:15 UTC - in response to Message 1176342.

Hmmmmmnnnnnn...wondered why this was in politics.....

...now I know why!


Heh. Perhaps I'm too used to other forums where "convenient" is all too often code for "there must have been a conspiracy" (and yes, there are some that believe FDR had foreknowledge of the Pearl Harbor attack and let it happen anyway). That there weren't carriers in the harbor at the time of the attack was not a matter of convenience for anybody at the time, it was what it was, and as Barry explained, there were good reasons for the locations of the 3 carriers in the Pacific. It may be unintended word usage by Dr Imaginario which is why I asked my question by way of response to his post.

Of course if Dr I. wants to divert this thread on such a tangent, I'll ask him/her to join me in a different one, Chris has very clearly stated he does not want that to happen here.
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Message 1176651 - Posted: 9 Dec 2011, 1:53:51 UTC - in response to Message 1176547.
Last modified: 9 Dec 2011, 1:56:27 UTC

Hmmmmmnnnnnn...wondered why this was in politics.....

...now I know why!


Heh. Perhaps I'm too used to other forums where "convenient" is all too often code for "there must have been a conspiracy" (and yes, there are some that believe FDR had foreknowledge of the Pearl Harbor attack and let it happen anyway). That there weren't carriers in the harbor at the time of the attack was not a matter of convenience for anybody at the time, it was what it was, and as Barry explained, there were good reasons for the locations of the 3 carriers in the Pacific. It may be unintended word usage by Dr Imaginario which is why I asked my question by way of response to his post.

Of course if Dr I. wants to divert this thread on such a tangent, I'll ask him/her to join me in a different one, Chris has very clearly stated he does not want that to happen here.


Well, the attack on Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941 was a terrible thing. Many of the brave members of our military at that base lost their lives that day. Truely, a Day that will live in Infamy.

Yes, that attack did throw the nation squarely into WWII. There was a LOT of moral outrage. My dad was in High School that day, but as soon as he had graduated he enlisted (he wound up fighting the Nazis in Europe).

However, in one very small sense, it was 'convenient'. The Allied powers in Europe had been trounced by the Axis, and were in a very real danger of totally losing. There was no political will among the people here in USA to go to war again in Europe, so soon after the last time (WWI). Many, in fact, were somewhat sympathetic to the Nazis (we did not yet know the true scope of Nazi evil). Before Pearl Harbor, the most that FDR could do was to 'lend/lease' war material to the Allies (by this time, pretty much only Britain) while we remained officially neutral.

In the aftermath of Pearl Harbor, since the Germans and Italians honored their alliance with Japan, we at last had causus belli and enough moral outrage to sustain us through the long and very bloody war. So, in a very real sense, it was 'convenient' to those in Asia and Europe at the time who longed for Freedom from tyranny.

But, what a price paid by all sides for it.

So, let us remember our honored dead and wounded at Pearl Harbor from the Dec. 7th, 1941 attack. They gave their blood, bodies, and lives for not only our people and Nation (the USA) but also for the freedom loving people and nations the world over. Let us, the world over, never forget their bravery, heroism, and sacrifice that day. They actually made the world a better place through their deeds.
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