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182

So I want to know, did the Japanese Navy have the ability to destroy it in a surprise attack, let's say on 1941 Dec 7? I'm asking if the Japanese Navy had the ability. I'm not asking if it was a viable strategy or sound war plan. Well, you're getting both. :) Evaluating it as a war plan is WAY more interesting. Yes, but... It would be fixed in six months. ...


87

There are two simple reasons they did not, besides "they couldn't" The "they couldn't" make the airborne assault with paratroopers is underscored by the fact that their longest range transport planes had ranges (one way) of at most 3300 km (about 1700 NM) so even on a one way trip they could not reach Hawaii. But the idea is dead in the ...


84

Japanese AC power outlets were first standardised in 1926 with the publication of the "挿込型接続器標準仕様書" (lit., "Standard for a Insertable Connector"), which became JIS C 8303. At the time, Japan was barely an industrial nation, and generally relied on imported power outlets. The leading designs up for consideration were thus the German Schuko and the American "2-...


81

No. The general argument goes something like this: Japan was running out of trained pilots Japan couldn't spare the fuel to properly train more pilots But they had plenty of planes. Thus untrained kamikaze pilots are more effective than untrained conventional pilots, and they used less fuel. It can be argued that it was the most effective tactic for the ...


79

The total land area of Japan is around 146,000 square miles. 20% of that works out around 29,000 square miles or 18.6 million acres. The population of Tokugawa japan was around 30 million people. 80% of that is 24 million people. This gives each farmer roughly 3/4s of an acre. The basic unit of land in Japan was the cho, which was roughly 2.5 acres. ...


73

There is a 1946 book by John Hersey, Hiroshima, which is an excellent compilation of personal testimonies from Hiroshima residents following the atomic bombing. Although it doesn’t mention Allied leafleting specifically, there’s a few important things it indicates about civilian perceptions of the threat at the time, namely It was abundantly clear to ...


67

Training and morale of Japanese soldiers First of all, Japanese Forces were by no means inferior to their enemies in terms of fighting spirit or training. Beyond a doubt, No nation in WW2 had soldiers of such fanatical devotion in her service as Japan did, who actively sought out Gyokusai (Glorious death). Their mindset could be explained in Japanese martial ...


60

Also, correct me if I'm wrong but the heavy AA guns appear like they can't point down over the deck. They can only point upwards or parallel to the surface, but not down at the surface. This assumption is wrong. The US Mark 12 5"/38 caliber dual purpose (surface and aircraft) mount was the primary heavy AA armament facing kamikazes. It was mounted on ...


60

Because the Japanese Government surrendered on 15 August. Naturally, the Japanese military was ordered to lay down their arms. For Manchuria this meant the much-reduced Kwantung Army, which accordingly surrendered as a unit to the advancing Soviets. There is a surprising amount of confusion over when exactly the surrender took place. A quick search found ...


55

The specific scenario of using paratroopers is a nonstarter. In addition to @KorvinStarmast's answer on why it's infeasible, Japan actually only had about 1,500 paratroopers. There simply wasn't enough of them to actually do anything, even if they could be transported to Hawaii. (For the rest of the post I'm treating "take Pearl Harbor" as taking Hawaii. ...


52

It's possible we adopted the term Kamikaze because that's what we heard from the Japanese themselves. The term was apparently used by Tokyo Rose on her broadcasts to the American troops. The book Lucky Lady: The World War II Heroics of the USS Santa Fe and Franklin,By Steve Jackson, states she declared the Japanese had a new "superweapon...the ...


49

No. At least, not to any practical intent or purpose. Japanese in Britain Significant numbers of Japanese were actually sold into slavery overseas during the 16th century, mostly through Portuguese merchants. Aside from chattel slavery, Portuguese sailors also bought young Japanese women as concubines, and it would not have been unthinkable if one ...


49

Japan was a threat to the US's Pacific territories, and those of other European powers. China was not. Unlike China, and every other Asian nation at the time, Japan had defeated and humiliated a European power in the Russo-Japanese War. They defeated Russia not only on land, but also at sea where European powers typically dominate. Even if it was the ailing ...


45

Japan successfully wiped out America's defenses at Pearl Harbor, The basic premise of your question is faulty: the American defenses weren't wiped out. Look at the list of what the Japanese hit (from Wikipedia): 4 battleships sunk 4 battleships damaged 2 other ships sunk 3 cruisers damaged 3 destroyers damaged 3 other ships damaged 188 aircraft destroyed ...


44

Wow, where to start. Basically, ignore anything in the previous answer regarding Europe and shields. As far European metallurgy goes, pattern welding was in use as early as the 2nd and 3rd centuries. The technique continued to be used up until about the end of the viking era (mid 11th century) when quenching and tempering basically took over. As a ...


42

This is a matter of very hot debate. It depends on what assumptions you make about what would have happened in the future. But there are two basic scenarios: The bombings saved somewhere in the neighborhood of 250 - 500 thousand US lives, and Japanese lives in the millions. The bombings saved US lives numbered only in the thousands, and actually cost the ...


40

This modern tradition has its roots in the First World War, when Japan entered on the side of the Allies following the Anglo-Japanese Alliance. Japan's entry carried an initial, overt goal of restoring the German Kiautschou Bay Concession to Chinese sovereignty. The Siege of Tsingtao, the administrative centre of the German concession, ended in the ...


40

The Wikipedia entry on the atomic bombings cites a few sources that confirm this was indeed a criterion, among others (emphasis mine): In April 1945, Marshall asked Groves to nominate specific targets for bombing for final approval by himself and Stimson. [...] The Target Committee nominated five targets: Kokura, the site of one of Japan's largest munitions ...


39

Yes, there were extensive rapes by American soldiers during the Second World War. During the Second World War American GIs in Europe raped around 14,000 civilian women, in England, France and Germany. There were around 3,500 rapes by American servicemen in France between June 1944 and the end of the war ... some Allied troops were punished for sexual ...


37

Japan had a small domestic oil production, a few million barrels, but not nearly enough to meet their peacetime needs let alone war. What they did have is enough oil refineries with a capacity of almost a year's peacetime consumption. If they could get the oil to Japan, they could refine it into fuel. They were also heavily invested in synthetic oil plants ...


37

Yes, that would be the Kenpeitai. It was a military police corps, founded in 1881. The kenpeitai had jurisdiction everywhere within the Japanese empire and their conquered territories. Although it was a military police corps, everyone fell under their jurisdiction. Not just the military, civilians as well. The naval equivalent was the Tokkeitai. Both ...


36

I seriously doubt it. Japan was a traditional monarchy, philosophically and ideologically far closer to China than Germany. Of course both were mortal enemies and had been for centuries. Far more likely they were drawn together simply by the fact that both were shut out from the "international community" and felt slighted by the UK and US (and in case of ...


36

The fate of the German ambassador to Japan, Heinrich Georg Stahmer indicates what probably happened to most of the Germans in Japan. On May 5, 1945, as the German surrender was approaching, Stahmer was handed an official protest by Japanese Foreign Minister Shigenori Togo, accusing the German government of betraying its Japanese ally. Following the ...


35

Truman retained mission authorization within the Oval Office, but all further details were delegated through the normal chain of command to Colonel Tibbets to plan the mission. Once the Japanese response to the Potsdam declaration, Mokusatsu, had been sent and received, it would have been tacitly understood all around that any further decisions could ...


34

What intelligence did the Russians have that the Japanese had either torpedo boats or mines in the North Sea, and what was the source of that intelligence? I don't have the book referenced in the article, but the report from the International Commissions Of Inquiry is online. It mentions several "reports" (really rumors) in more detail. It ...


34

One element is there were more Filipino than American troops. On April 9, 1942, the 12,000 American and 58,000 Filipino soldiers surrendered. At the time of surrender, about a third were sick or wounded, note historians Everett Rogers and Nancy Bartlit. Source: Atomic Heritage Foundation The New Mexico National Guard Baatan Memorial Museum gives this ...


33

Yes, there were. Below are examples from Siam, the Philippines, China, Mexico and Indonesia. Ayutthaya (Siamese Kingdom) Probably the best known one was Yamada Nagamasa (born 1590, died 1630) in the Ayutthaya Kingdom. Over a period of 15 years, he ...rose from the low Thai nobility rank of Khun to the senior of Ok-ya, his title becoming Ok-ya ...


32

Little Boy detonated at ~580 metres above Hiroshima, and Fat Man at ~500 metres above Nagasaki. While all nuclear explosions generate electromagnetic pulses of some sort, at these low altitudes their strength rapidly diminishes with distance, giving them a rather limited area of effect. The effects of EMP from a surface or low-altitude nuclear burst will ...


32

I came across a document in the Truman library while researching another question here, which according to the one Library page, seems to be the closest thing to documenting the order by Truman authorizing the bomb drop: First is the request for authorization, dated 31 July, 1945: FROM: AGWAR Washington TO: Tripartite Conference Babelsberg [a district of ...


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