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 Post subject: The Last Sortie
PostPosted: Sat Dec 23, 2017 8:08 pm 
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Many thanks to nomad990, who had saved this and provided me with a copy when I thought it was gone for good.

THE LAST SORTIE

In April 1945, the war was almost over. For the Japanese, it was already irrevocably lost, yet there were those who clung to whatever hope they could imagine for victory.

Their last great hope was called the Kamikaze, and during the first days of the American landings on Okinawa, hundreds of young men strapped themselves into aircraft and took off, intent on flinging their aircraft and themselves into an enemy ship, where they would die together with their enemies.

These airmen were not the only Kamikazes. From the Imperial Navy's base at Kure came the last remnant of the Combined Fleet's surface strength, transformed into seagoing Kamikazes.

Eight destroyers.

One light cruiser.

One battleship.

Her name was Yamato.

***

For the Americans, the war was won, but there was yet a great deal of dying to be done. Soldiers and Marines rooted out the suicidal Japanese troops ashore, while in the waters and in the air around Okinawa, Sailors and Airmen fought the Kamikazes.

It was a submarine that found Yamato first. Her name was Threadfin, and she was on her second war patrol when she picked up Yamato and her consorts coming out of the Bungo Strait on the night of April 6. Although Threadfin could not gain attack position, she did send a contact report. Other submarines closed the Japanese position, but none were able to attack. Yamato slipped away.

But now her presence was known. Admiral Raymond Spruance, Commander Fifth Fleet, deployed his forces to meet her. Either his fast carrier task force or his bombardment force was capable of handling these seagoing Kamikazes. But the fast carrier task force was also required to intercept the waves of aerial Kamikazes expected in the morning, and Admiral Spruance did not believe it could execute both missions. He ordered Vice Admiral Marc A. Mitscher, Commander Task Force 58, to forget about Yamato, and ordered Rear Admiral Morton L. Deyo, Commander Task Force 54, to assemble his group of old battleships and cruisers and prepare for a surface action on the following night.

Admiral Mitscher, though fuming at the lost opportunity to sink a battleship, obeyed. Admiral Deyo, anxious about the unknown capabilities of the approaching enemy battleship - and of his own ships, wearied by weeks of shore bombardment - set about planning his night action.

On the afternoon of April 7, as the Kamikazes attacked and were shot down in droves by the fighter pilots of Task Force 58, and as Admiral Deyo exercised his ships in their night battle tactics, Yamato, shadowed by American flying boats, drew steadily closer to Okinawa as the day wore on. At dusk, Admiral Deyo, satisfied that his ships and men were prepared, assumed his night battle formation and steamed northwest to intercept.

***

The Combat Information Center glowed green. Around, and around, and around, swept the electronic lines on the radarscopes. On each sweep, blips popped up. Most were known, and all were plotted. There were a few aircraft in the area - snoopers, both American and Japanese. They were not a particular threat as long as they stayed away, and the CIC watch aboard USS Mannert L. Abele kept a careful eye on each to make sure that they did.

There were also surface ships in the area. All of these were known and plotted. The two closest were the other picket destroyers, Bryant and Barton. Twenty-nine others were the rest of Task Force 54, steaming along cautiously behind the probing picket destroyers, waiting for the word.

***

The tension aboard Yamato was so thick you could cut it with a katana.

The battleship had been at Action Stations for more than 24 hours, menaced first by submarines and then by aircraft. The crew had spent the daylight hours keeping a careful eye on the shadowing American seaplanes that stayed just out of range, waiting for an air attack that had never materialized.

Once night had fallen, the crew had been allowed to go off duty in rotations, just long enough to be served a simple meal of beans and rice. That had let them relax a little, but they were still terribly tired, and now they were back at their stations, waiting for the Americans they knew were nearby. Yamato's radar screens showed a few aircraft, and her radar detectors had been picking up the emissions of American radars for hours.

And now, as they closed Okinawa, the men at their stations waited. Waited for word that the Americans had been found. Waited for word that the decisive battle had begun. Waited to die.

***

Admiral Deyo sat in his chair in the flag plot of the battleship Tennessee. With him was Commander Samuel Eliot Morison, the historian-turned-naval officer who had been assigned to Tennessee for the Okinawa operation.

Deyo and Morison got along well. The two men were of the same age and similar backgrounds, and despite early suspicions some Navy men had had of an academic in uniform, Morison's reputation as a seaman in his own right had gained him acceptance within the Navy. Now he sat with the man who would direct the upcoming engagement, both quietly watching the plot as it was updated. The flying boats of the patrol squadrons were sending back a steady stream of information on the enemy force, and as its estimated position drew nearer, Deyo shifted uneasily. Before long his picket destroyers should make contact; once they did, he would have work to do, but until that time, all he could do was wait.

***

Cold seas broke around the bow of Mannert L. Abele as she continued keeping her watch on the picket line. It was a dark night with low clouds and occasional rain squalls that kept the men on her open bridge in their foul-weather gear, but it was warm and dry in the CIC one deck below, where men continued to hunch over radarscopes that showed nothing new...nothing new...nothing new.

Until there was something new.

"Sir, I've got something," said one of the radarmen without looking up.

A crowd quickly formed around the scope. The radarman pointed to a green trace near the edge of the scope. "There. Bearing about three-one-five. Range maybe fifty thousand yards."

The CIC officer lifted a sound-powered phone. "Bridge, CIC. Surface contact bearing three-one-five."

He hadn't yet replaced the phone when the destroyer squadron commander walked through the hatch, water dripping from his rain gear. "Show me," Comdesron60 ordered brusquely.

"Here, sir." The CIC officer pointed a finger at a fresh grease pencil mark on the plastic chart overlay. "One large contact. If that's Yamato, we should be picking up the rest of her task force soon."

"Very well." Comdesron60 turned to his staff communications officer. "Get off a contact report, right away."

"Aye-aye, sir." The communications officer departed for the radio room.

***

Captain Ariga of Yamato stared out from his protected battle bridge into the rain lashing his ship. He had mixed emotions about the weather. On the one hand, it offered some protection from enemy eyes. On the other hand, it also obscured the view of his lookouts. And he had no doubt that American radar could see through the rain. He was not so confident in the ability of his own radar to do the same.

Nevertheless, the rain was there. A gift from the gods? Or a curse? There was no way to know.

***

Admiral Deyo watched impassively as the plot developed. All three picket destroyers had found the enemy, and the picture being put together from their information showed, thus far, six contacts - one large and one medium ringed by four small. Each was marked with a tentative identification - BB for the large contact, CL for the medium, and DD for each of the small ones.

The Japanese were fifty miles away. At their current speed, with Task Force 54 already lying across their line of advance, they were ninety minutes from being within gun range of the American battleships.

It was time.

"Recall the pickets," he said quietly. "Marshal the Right Flank destroyers. I want them to execute a torpedo attack one hour from now."

"Aye-aye, sir."

***

Comdesron55, Captain A. E. Jarrell, received the news calmly. As leader of the Right Flank destroyers, he was responsible for delivering the opening torpedo attacks on the enemy.

The plan was simple. Desron55 would split into its component divisions. The five ships of Desdiv109, led by Captain Jarrell in Porterfield, would dash west, across the path of the oncoming Japanese force, and carry out a torpedo attack on the right flank of the enemy formation. Meanwhile the three ships of Desdiv110 and the three picket destroyers would execute successive attacks against the enemy's left flank. If the attacks were timed properly, the Japanese would be caught in a brutal torpedo crossfire similar to the one that had devastated them at Surigao Strait.

And, Captain Jarrell knew, as soon as his ships were clear their attacks would be followed up by the eight destroyers from Deyo's left flank. Then whatever was left would fall under the guns of six battleships and seven cruisers.

If all went well. And there was no reason to believe, at this stage of the war, that it would not. They had the tactics, the men, and the equipment. Forged in the crucible of the Solomons and tested in the fires of Leyte, the sword of the US Navy was very sharp indeed. Especially at night.

***

The light cruiser Yahagi had an extensive electronics fit for a Japanese warship. Besides the usual radio direction-finding and radar-intercept receivers - both of which had been warning of the presence of American radars for hours - she also carried two search radars of her own, a No.13 air-search set and a No.22 surface-search set. The No.22 was especially unusual in that it had been modified so that it could be used to control Yahagi's 6in guns. It had proved reasonably useful off Samar.

Something was wrong, though. On all of Yahagi's radarscopes there had suddenly appeared the strangest things: ugly blotches of electronic noise, flickering weirdly, washing out the neat blips that had represented various contacts. The operators worked their controls desperately, trying to make some sense of the picture. Nothing worked.

***

Captain Jarrell eyed the plot as the range wound down. Ten thousand yards...nine thousand yards...eight thousand yards off the starboard bow. Any time now, he knew, his ships would release their torpedoes...or be met by a withering blast of gunfire from the Japanese formation.

Topside, Porterfield's torpedo officer watched his Torpedo Data Computer work. The whole system was in remote - radar ranges and bearings were being fed automatically into the computer, which in turn set the torpedo gyros and rotated the tubes to the proper angle. All that remained was to release the weapons.

And when the range came down to 6500 yards, that's what he did. Five Mark XV torpedoes hissed into the water, aimed at the large ship in the center of the enemy formation that he could not even see.

Behind Porterfield, her sister ships Callaghan, Cassin Young, Irwin, and Preston did the same. As soon as the torpedoes were gone, Porterfield swung sharply to port and led her division away.

***

The same thing was happening on the opposite side of the formation. The three pickets fired their half-salvoes perhaps half a minute after Porterfield's division, and the rest of Desron55 - Laws, Longshaw, and Morrison - launched their torpedoes about a minute later. Fifty-five torpedoes were on their way into the Japanese formation. The runs would be short.

***

The sea on Yamato's starboard bow lit up with a brilliant flash and a dull roar echoed across the water.

"Hard to port!" Captain Ariga shouted down the voice pipe.

Below, Yamato's brass wheel spun sharply. The giant battleship hesitated, then began to heel over and swing into the turn.

One of the Porterfield division's torpedoes had exploded the destroyer Isokaze in the screen. Submarine? Destroyer? No one aboard Yamato knew. It didn't matter. The main thing was to get away from the other torpedoes that had to be approaching.

On the port beam came another thunderous explosion. It backlit the destroyer Suzutsuki, sinking fast, her back broken by a torpedo from one of the picket destroyers.

Whumpf!

A torpedo hit Yamato on the starboard side at about Frame 50, forward of the citadel. The bow began to flood.

Whumpf!

A second torpedo hit the battleship, by now turning very sharply, near the turn of the bilge on the port side at about Frame 112, which marked the boundary between the hydraulic pump room and Boiler Room No.4, just abaft the forward 15.5cm turret. Both machinery spaces flooded instantly, and the 15.5cm magazine and Boiler Room No.2, inboard of the demolished compartments, began to flood through damaged bulkheads and bottom plating. The forward 15.5cm turret and the main battery director were jammed in train by shock. Yamato completed a full circle and resumed her southwesterly course.

***

Admiral Deyo continued watching the plot develop. There, the Japanese... there, the American destroyers retiring from their initial attacks... there, the second group of American destroyers driving in to make their attacks... here, the Battle Line, its guns already trained out on the approaching enemy.

If the intelligence estimates were correct, Yamato's guns had a maximum range in the neighborhood of 45,000 yards. Theoretically, she could have opened fire by now. But she had not, probably because she could not see the American ships. That made Admiral Deyo feel a little better.

***

Captain Hara of Yahagi did not know what to think. Had submarines or destroyers conducted the attack? Either way, it was clear the ship's radars were doing no good. He ordered Yahagi to switch on her searchlights and probe the darkness for the enemy.

***

The American Left Flank destroyers conducted their torpedo attack in much the same way as their Right Flank counterparts had before. The four ships from Desron51 - Hall, Paul Hamilton, Laffey, and Twiggs - drove in against the Japanese right, while the four ships from Desron56 - Heywood L. Edwards, Richard P. Leary, Bennion, and Daly, all veterans of Surigao Strait - attacked the Japanese left, noting the searchlights flickering from one of the targets, hoping it would not find them. They launched a total of forty torpedoes and retired.

***

Whumpf! Whumpf!

Yamato shuddered under the impact of two more torpedo hits. Both weapons struck the battleship's starboard side. One struck at Frame 170, between the after turrets, causing serious flooding in the vicinity of the after magazines. This torpedo also displaced the outer starboard shaft, causing steady leakage in Engine Room No.3. The other torpedo exploded at Frame 122, flooding Boiler Rooms Nos.3 and 7. These hits obviated the need for counterflooding, but by now Yamato had been deprived of four of her twelve boilers, and she was noticeably slower and more sluggish.

Moments after Yamato was torpedoed, Yahagi was hit. One torpedo struck her at Frame 155. This hit nearly amputated her stern; it snapped the two port shafts, distorted the two starboard shafts, and ruptured her gasoline stowage tanks. With flooding in all three engine rooms and a raging gasoline fire aft, Yahagi staggered to a halt, settling by the stern.

One other ship was hit in this attack: the destroyer Hamakaze, which caught a torpedo meant for her betters and blew up.

***

In Tennessee's flag plot, Admiral Deyo watched the American destroyers clear the area. The range to Yamato was 32,000 yards. The wait was over.

"Commence firing."

***

Vice Admiral Seiichi Ito, commanding the operation from Yamato, saw the horizon in front of him brighten suddenly, light dancing off the low clouds as though from an electrical storm. But he doubted that it was lightning. A moment later, fountains of water told him his intuition was correct.

"Signal Yahagi and the destroyers to make a torpedo attack, please," he said. "Yamato is to attack independently."

***

Admiral Spruance stepped out onto the flag bridge just in time to see the American line light up with gun flashes. Six battleships were steaming in line ahead, crossing from east to west, with four heavy cruisers off their bows and three light cruisers on their quarters. Only one of the cruisers, Portland, was firing. The guns of the light cruisers could not yet reach the enemy, and of the heavies, only Portland had the necessary radar equipment. Similarly, only four of the six battleships could engage at this range because of their radar. Idaho, leading the column, was in action, as was the flagship Tennessee, third in line, the sharpshooting West Virginia, fourth, and Colorado, sixth. But his own New Mexico, second, and Maryland, fifth, were still silent. Maryland had ranged on West Virginia's splashes at Surigao Strait, but at present the range was too great even for that, so for the moment she remained silent, biding her time.

It was odd, being aboard a silent ship in the midst of so much gunfire. The admiral could hear the guns of the other ships, see their muzzle flashes, see the odd reflections off the cloud cover, smell the powder smoke drifting back from Idaho. But around him it was quiet. Odd.

***

The first shell struck Yamato. A 16in shell fired by West Virginia, it crashed into the forward 15.5cm turret and exploded. A gout of flame erupted from the ruined turret as ready ammunition exploded. The damage control officer ordered the flooding of the forward 15.5cm magazines, which had already been partly flooded by the second torpedo hit.

An 8in shell from Portland struck 5in mount S1 and exploded, killing the crew and showering the area with splinters.

A 14in shell from Idaho, the only vessel present which was fitted with the new Mark 13 fire control radar, landed next to the forward main battery turret, pierced the weather deck, and was rejected by the armored deck below. West Virginia scored a similar hit moments later.

Tennessee landed a 14in shell on the armored conning tower. Its occupants were severely shaken, but the shell did not penetrate.

A 16in shell from Colorado passed through the tower mast, leaving broken cables crackling in its path, and plunged into the sea.

One of Idaho's shells hit the roof of Turret II. The armor held.

Two 16in shells smashed into the cluster of antiaircraft guns on Yamato's port side. One exploded as it passed through the weather deck, uprooting a 5in mount and leaving it lying upside down on the deck. The other was rejected by the deck armor. Fires broke out on the port side.

An 8in shell skimmed off the side armor amidships. Another exploded inside the unarmored bow.

A 14in shell was rejected by the transverse bulkhead forward. Another exploded in the water next to the ship. Splinters holed a few void compartments.

Another 14in shell hit, tearing through the tower mast and exploding deep within the superstructure, igniting a smoky fire.

A 16in shell hit the bow well forward and passed through the ship. It exploded as it exited the hull, blowing a sizeable hole at the waterline.

A 14in shell detonated at the base of the funnel on the starboard side, caving in the funnel casing and adding to the carnage among the antiaircraft gunners.

Two 16in shells pierced the weather decks and were rejected by the armored deck.

And Yamato steamed on, absorbing every blow.

***

Four of the five surviving Japanese destroyers obeyed the order to execute a torpedo attack. Asashimo, whose engines were in poor condition, was attending to Yahagi and so did not attack. Kasumi closed until she could see gun flashes, fired torpedoes, and turned back. Yukikaze did likewise. Hatsushimo closed in a bit more and was taken under a deliberate fire by the unengaged heavy cruisers San Francisco, Minneapolis, and Tuscaloosa. Dancing and weaving to avoid 8in fire, Hatsushimo launched her torpedoes at long range and retired. All of these extreme-range shots missed.

Fuyuzuki was the most gallant, but least fortunate. She pressed imprudently close - a mere 18,000 yards - to the light cruisers Mobile, Birmingham, and Biloxi, which raked her with rapid 6in salvoes that left her a sinking wreck.

***

The American battleships, on their westerly heading across Yamato's bows, were approaching an unfavorable position. If they ventured much farther west, Yamato would have a clear path to the transport area. The time had come to reverse course, and each American warship checked fire as the line came about.

***

Yamato was a shambles. Fires were blazing out of control on either side of her superstructure. Machine-gun ammunition crackled as it cooked off, punctuated by the occasional dull booms of detonating 5in rounds. Men were trying to fight the fires, but there had been heavy casualties, and each fresh hit inflicted more.

Captain Ariga marveled that his ship was holding up so well. Four torpedo hits, more than a dozen hits from heavy-caliber shells, yet she continued on at 20 knots. If only they could get close enough to see the enemy!

***

The American line steadied up on its new easterly course. The range had closed to just 24,000 yards, and now the light cruisers and Mark 3-equipped ships could join in the assault.

Thunder split the night again as six battleships and seven cruisers opened up on Yamato. The light cruisers fired deliberately at this range, yet they were getting hits. What seemed like dozens of 6in rounds began to explode all over Yamato's upperworks, and the heavy cruisers sent their 8in rounds home as well.

The battleship guns were at work, too. Ten 14in and 16in shells struck Yamato in the space of five minutes - but not one penetrated her citadel. The massively-armored behemoth shrugged them all off as the range wound down to 20,000 yards.

***

Captain Ariga stared at the horizon through wild eyes. Blood streamed from seven wounds on his smoke-grimed body, soaking the remains of his shredded uniform. He bent to the wreckage of the sheared-off voice pipes and shouted: "Hard to port! Steer east!"

In the wheelhouse, Chief Quartermaster Koyama, an old man who had been at Tsushima, deftly spun Yamato's brass wheel to port, bringing her around to due east.

***

In the plotting rooms of six American battleships, fire control parties noted the changing target angle. They made minute adjustments, and fired again.

***

Yamato heaved slowly onto her new course. In the foretop, her gunnery officer could see the flashes of the American guns, but he could do nothing about it. His instruments had been destroyed by shellfire and communications had been severed, so that he had no way of knowing whether the after fire control station had taken charge, and he himself was dying.

The after fire control station had in fact taken charge and had ordered the guns trained out - but the ship's hydraulic systems had been severely damaged, and the turrets were rotating very slowly. Too slowly. The splashes from falling shells rose all about the ship, and a 14in shell smashed through the 250mm side armor of the forward turret and exploded. Fire swept through the turret, killing everyone inside, but the flames were contained to the gunhouse.

Moments later, a 16in shell struck the 410mm side armor abreast Boiler Room No.11. The shell broke up but achieved a partial penetration, with a few fragments entering the boiler room. One of them severed a steam line; superheated steam jetted into the compartment, killing nearly every man there. Only a few badly-scalded men managed to escape.

***

It had become a running fight, Admiral Deyo saw. A slugging match, six against one. His ships were landing many blows, but the enemy might yet punch back.

***

Yamato's second gunnery officer focused his attention on the third ship in the American line, which, although he did not know it, was now West Virginia.

"Range twenty thousand meters. Bearing one-zero-zero. Target speed fifteen knots," the rangefinder operator reported calmly.

"Very well." The fire control computer accepted the data and generated a solution. Orders were sent to the turrets, which adjusted their bearing and elevation. And then:

"Fire."

***

Six shells whistled over the American line, exploding in the sea more than a thousand yards off West Virginia's starboard bow. The Japanese had misjudged both range and bearing. This time.

***

The second gunnery officer ignored the violent shaking as more heavy shells exploded aboard Yamato. All was secondary to the task at hand. He fired another salvo. They were again long, but this time they were on in azimuth.

He felt Yamato shake again. This time he couldn't ignore it.

A pillar of fire erupted from Yamato's after section. A heavy shell had driven into the after 15.5cm turret, causing a violent ammunition explosion that literally blew the turret apart. The roof was lifted into the air and crashed down amid the wreckage of the antiaircraft guns. The back plate was blown overboard. The side plates were simply shredded.

By the slimmest of margins, the flash protection held, and the after 15.5cm magazines were flooded. But the blast and fire wrecked the after fire control station. It also smashed the rangefinder of Turret III, leaving that turret blind and helpless. Only Turret II remained in action. It fired a few haphazard salvoes, but none fell anywhere near the American line.

Meanwhile, more and more American shells of all calibers smashed into Yamato. Her main belt resisted a number of shells, but there were a few partial penetrations, and her unarmored portions were thoroughly riddled. As progressive flooding spread, the ship settled deeper into the water, pulling more damaged areas below the waterline and causing further progressive flooding. Engine Room No.3 finally had to be abandoned, dropping the battleship's speed to 12 knots, but with three shafts still turning, she continued on.

***

Admiral Deyo was growing frustrated. The enemy had slowed and her gunfire was sporadic at best, but despite countless hits, she was still underway, still afloat, still, somehow, holding on.

It was time for the destroyers to finish the job.

"Have the cruisers cease firing," he ordered, remembering the fate of Albert W. Grant, damaged by friendly fire at Surigao Strait. "Order the Right Flank destroyers to attack."

The cruiser guns fell silent. The battleship guns continued to roar.

***

Captain Ariga was dead. Vice Admiral Ito was dead. There was no one left alive to give orders, so old Chief Quartermaster Koyama remained at his post, following the last orders he had been given, paying no attention to the screaming shells or the flashing guns or the five dark shapes that crossed beneath the whistling battleship guns and fired torpedoes.

Whumpf. Whumpf. Whumpf. Whumpf.

Captain Jarrell's five destroyers had released three torpedoes each at the wounded giant. Four struck home. One at Frame 220 tore open the stern, wrecking both starboard shafts and the steering gear, leading to flooding in Engine Room No.1. One at Frame 175, very near an earlier hit, left a huge gash abreast the after magazines. One at Frame 135 flooded Boiler Room No.11 and the cooling machinery room instantly. And one at Frame 90, between the forward main battery turrets, caused flooding in the forward magazine spaces.

These hits doomed Yamato. With virtually the entire starboard side of the ship open to the sea, her capsize was only minutes away.

***

The Americans noted that Yamato had slowed further. They continued firing.

***

Yamato rolled to starboard, her list growing, her hull lying deeper in the water. Loose pieces of wreckage slid across the deck. Rivers of blood from her dead and wounded flowed down into the sea. The few survivors of the topside slaughter began to jump overboard, swimming frantically away from the sinking ship. Old Koyama clung doggedly to his wheel.

Inside the ship, shells and powder cans began to break loose, crashing about the magazines and handling rooms, crushing any unfortunate soul in the way. Men scrambled for hatches and ladders, trying desperately to escape. Few did.

Yamato lay over on her starboard side, wreathed in smoke and steam, with shells still falling around her. Then, without any warning whatsoever, she exploded.

***

After sinking Yamato, the Americans spent the remainder of the night mopping up the Japanese remnants. Three destroyers - Yukikaze, Kasumi, and Hatsushimo - escaped by fleeing to the north. Asashimo, still tending to Yahagi, was caught unawares and sunk by the same torpedo salvo that finished off the crippled cruiser.

Yamato was not the last Kamikaze. Many more aerial suicide attacks were to come, and the ships which destroyed Yamato would suffer as they continued to support the forces ashore. Less than twelve hours after Yamato sank, in fact, Mannert L. Abele - first of the destroyers to detect the oncoming battleship - was herself sunk by a Kamikaze. Four more of the participating destroyers would be lost by the end of the war, and others would be seriously damaged. Two, Laffey and Cassin Young, survive to this day as museums, with prominent displays discussing Okinawa, the Kamikazes, and Yamato.

In 1986, a team of explorers located the wreck of Yamato. Today the great seagoing Kamikaze is a tangled mass of wreckage on the ocean floor off Okinawa, her shattered hull a grave for 2000 men.

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 Post subject: Re: The Last Sortie
PostPosted: Sat Dec 23, 2017 11:12 pm 
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Wow.

Just curious: There was a mention of IJN RADAR going wonky. Was this deliberate USN ECM, or simply the surfeit of converging USN RADAR creating cross-talk in Y's equipment ??

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 Post subject: Re: The Last Sortie
PostPosted: Sun Dec 24, 2017 12:28 am 
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Electronic countermeasures. By this stage of the war, many American warships were fitted with jamming gear.

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 Post subject: Re: The Last Sortie
PostPosted: Sun Dec 24, 2017 8:15 am 
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...Theodore -

Bravo.


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 Post subject: Re: The Last Sortie
PostPosted: Sun Dec 24, 2017 6:16 pm 
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Thanks for the additional birthday present. A fine work indeed. Bravo Zulu, sir.

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 Post subject: Re: The Last Sortie
PostPosted: Sun Dec 24, 2017 6:27 pm 
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Thank you, and happy birthday.

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 Post subject: Re: The Last Sortie
PostPosted: Sun Dec 24, 2017 8:26 pm 
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A good story. Thank you.


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 Post subject: Re: The Last Sortie
PostPosted: Mon Dec 25, 2017 2:50 pm 
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Thanks. It was a good read.

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