Raise a cold one to the crew of the Enola Gay...

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toad
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Re: Raise a cold one to the crew of the Enola Gay...

Post by toad » Mon Aug 13, 2018 2:09 am

IIRC The US Army plan was called Operation Olympic and the casualty estimates were one million US Soldiers and six million Japanese by direct fire.

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HTRN
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Re: Raise a cold one to the crew of the Enola Gay...

Post by HTRN » Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:47 pm

They were still using the purple hearts made for that planned invasion up until the mid 90s :shock:
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Langenator
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Re: Raise a cold one to the crew of the Enola Gay...

Post by Langenator » Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:50 pm

The code-word for the overall invasion was DOWNFALL. OLYMPIC was the landings on Kyushu (the southernmost main island) planned for November, 1945, and CORONET was the planned landings on the Kanto plain near Tokyo in the spring of 1946.

Casualty estimates were...fluid. As Frank makes clear in Downfall, the initial casualty estimates assumed that we would achieve at least some level of surprise regarding the time and place of the landings. Over the summer of 1945, U.S. intelligence became increasingly aware that this was not the case, and that (thanks to terrain analysis and excellent observation and analysis of our operational patterns and tendencies by Japanese intelligence) the IJA was making extensive defensive preparations right where we intended to land. In fact, they would have achieved at least numerical parity with our invasion troops, and would have had the advantage of prepared positions. Resulting casualties would have been extremely high.

Major changes to the plan - including skipping Kyushu and going straight to Honshu, which would have been a great deal riskier, because it would have put the landing beaches out of easy range of land-based planes on Okinawa - were being seriously considered at the time the bombs were dropped.

Other recommended reading on the topic:

Hell to Pay: Operation Downfall and the Invasion of Japan, 1945-1947 by D.M. Giangreco
The Most Controversial Decision: Truman, the Atomic Bombs, and the Defeat of Japan by Rev. Wilson Miscamble, C.S.C.
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Langenator
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Re: Raise a cold one to the crew of the Enola Gay...

Post by Langenator » Tue Aug 14, 2018 2:27 pm

Here's a (very) short version of Miscamble's book:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BmIBbcxseXM&t=6s
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Langenator
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Re: Raise a cold one to the crew of the Enola Gay...

Post by Langenator » Fri Aug 17, 2018 12:48 pm

Link to some great reading on the subject, from Trent Telenko at Chicago Boyz blog. https://chicagoboyz.net/archives/57858.html#more-57858

Things I didn't know:
-Japan had an A-bomb program. Actually, they had two, one belonging to the IJA and one for the IJN.
-Japan thought after Hiroshima that it would take several months for the US to be able to drop another bomb. Thus, Nagasaki was necessary to show that we had more than one bomb.
-Thanks to their A-bomb programs, the Japanese knew the bombs were different types
-Given enough bombs, we would have used them in a tactical role to support the invasion by nuking Area Army, Army, and maybe even division HQs.
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randy
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Re: Raise a cold one to the crew of the Enola Gay...

Post by randy » Fri Aug 17, 2018 4:59 pm

Langenator wrote:
Fri Aug 17, 2018 12:48 pm
Actually, they had two, one belonging to the IJA and one for the IJN.
Actually that was pretty standard. The only people the Imperial Japanese Army and Navy hated and mistrusted more than Gaijin were each other. One of the reasons Yamamoto was transferred to active fleet operations in 1941 was to get him away from the Tokyo Headquarters and lower the possibility of the Army assassinating him for not being enthusiastic enough about their war plans.

That attitude carried over into weapons development and procurement, and ensured there was never a true Japanese combined arms/Joint doctrine during WWII
...even before I read MHI, my response to seeing a poster for the stars of the latest Twilight movies was "I see 2 targets and a collaborator".

Langenator
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Re: Raise a cold one to the crew of the Enola Gay...

Post by Langenator » Fri Aug 17, 2018 5:08 pm

In fairness, the U.S. and UK didn't have any 'joint doctrine' during WWII either, nor did they create any. (Neither did the Russians or Germans, but for them, land/sea operations were largely irrelevant, and air/ground operations were almost entirely tactical in nature, with the air supporting the ground.)

What the U.S. and UK did have were generals and admirals who could, when necessary, subordinate their and their services egos in the interests of winning the war, and, when that failed, civilians leaders (FDR and Churchill) who could force them to it.

BTW, I recommend reading the whole list of links at the bottom of this year's article I linked. It's the archive or CB's VJ day articles since 2010. Lots of interesting stuff.
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MiddleAgedKen
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Re: Raise a cold one to the crew of the Enola Gay...

Post by MiddleAgedKen » Fri Aug 17, 2018 6:31 pm

I put the Franks book (Downfall) cited in the Chicagoboyz article on my to-read list.

I keep thinking Agent Franks, for some reason. :mrgreen:
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Langenator
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Re: Raise a cold one to the crew of the Enola Gay...

Post by Langenator » Fri Aug 17, 2018 8:49 pm

I think i'm going to put Truman and the Hiroshima Cult near the top of my to-read list.
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Langenator
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Re: Raise a cold one to the crew of the Enola Gay...

Post by Langenator » Sat Aug 18, 2018 11:53 pm

This article by Richard Frank provides a (very) short summary of his book, Downfall.
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