Skip to comments.FLEET STRIKES AS TOKYO ‘IGNORES’ TERMS; B-29 CHIEF NAMES 11 CITIES TO BE WIPED OUT (7/28/45)
Posted on 07/28/2015 4:57:19 AM PDT by Homer_J_Simpson
#1 - On the Atchison Topeka & Santa Fe - Johnny Mercer, with the Pied Pipers
#2 Sentimental Journey Les Brown, with Doris Day
#3 - Chopins Polonaise - Carmen Cavallaro
#4 - Gotta Be This Or That - Benny Goodman
#5 There! Ive Said It Again Vaughn Monroe
#6 If I Loved You Perry Como
#7 - Bell Bottom Trousers - Tony Pastor, with Ruth McCullough
#8 On the Atchison Topeka & Santa Fe Bing Crosby
#9 - Bell Bottom Trousers - Jerry Colonna
#9 - Sentimental Journey - Hal McIntyre
#9 Sentimental Journey Merry Macs
#9 Tampico Stan Kenton, with June Christy
#10 - Bell Bottom Trousers - Kay Kyser, with Ferdy Slim Quartet
#10 You Belong to My Heart Bing Crosby, with Xavier Cugat Orchestra
July 28th, 1945 (SATURDAY)
UNITED KINGDOM: Attlee, with Ernest Bevin, the new foreign secretary, flies out to rejoin the Potsdam conference.
Submarines HMS Aurochs and Alliance launched.
JAPAN: Premier Suzuki notes on the Japanese government’s reaction to the Potsdam Declaration that they will “take no notice.” There is concern among the members of the Japanese government that the diplomatic note was not delivered through a neutral government. There are also several other possible translations of the words used by the Premier.
He says that the Potsdam Declaration could only be ignored as it failed to answer several fundamental issues. The ultimatum had made no reference to the emperor or to the status of the throne after a surrender. Nor had Japan received any response to its request made to Moscow two weeks ago to mediate in peace negotiations and receive Prince Konoye as a special envoy. Hawks in the Japanese cabinet - identified as Korechika Anami, the war minister, Yoshijiro Umezu, the army chief of staff - argue that the deliberate absence of any reference to the emperor in the Potsdam declaration is certain evidence of Allied determination to topple the throne.
With Allied invasion forces building up they want the Ketsu-Go plan implemented to defeat US landings. The plan calls for a force of 2.35 million troops, backed by four million reservists and a newly-recruited civilian militia of 28 million.
During the day US bombers dropped thousands of leaflets on 12 Japanese cities warning civilians to “flee or perish.”
Carrier-based aircraft of the USN’s Task Force 38 attack the Inland Sea area between Nagoya and northern Kyushu, especially the Kure Naval Base. The aircraft sink a battleship HIJMS HARUNA, a battleship-carrier HIJMS HYUGA, heavy cruisers HIJMS AMAGI and KATSURAGI, a light carrier HIJMS RYUHO, 17 other vessels and the uncompleted carriers KASAGI, ASO and IBUKI. American and British pilots shot down or burned up 306 enemy planes and damaged 392. Heavy and accurate AA fire brings down 133 USN aircraft and 102 airmen.
1772 RN Sqn, Firefly a/c off HMS Indefatigable, Lt(A) Charles Peter Rodger “Steve” “CPR” Stevens RCNVR of Montreal, Province of Quebec. Lost in action - failed to return from strike, strafing enemy shipping at Hirara, near Shimo Islands, Japan.
Carrier-based aircraft of the RN’s Task Force 37 sink 3 ships off Yura.
Historians vary on the accounts of these strikes. Hammel for instance has strikes only occurring today. Reynolds shows these strikes occurring on both the 24th and today. Admiral Halsey with Bryan adds strikes on the 25th to those listed by Reynolds. In all three cases the US losses are listed with the same numbers. (Rich Leonard)
The USAAF’s VII Fighter Command dispatches 140+ P-51s, based on Iwo Jima, to hit 9 objectives (airfields and military targets) in a wide area around Tokyo and attack a destroyer escort along the Chiba Peninsula, leaving it burning.
During the day, 137 Ie Shima-based P-47s of the US Far East Air Force rocket and strafe airfields, oil stores, railroad yards, warehouses, industry, gun positions, and other targets on Kyushu at or near Kanoya, Metatsubara, Tachiarai, Kurume, Saga, and Junicho; 21 more P-47s attack shipping at Yatsushiro and A-26 Invaders and B-25s pound airfields at Kanoya; P-51s and B-25s, sweeping over the Inland Sea, destroy 2 small cargo vessels and a patrol boat and 70+ B-24s bomb shipping at Kure, claiming direct hits on a battleship and an aircraft carrier. RN and USN carrier-based aircraft attack airfields and naval installations in the Inland Sea. The battleship-aircraft carrier HIJMS Hyuga is sunk but 133 USN aircraft are lost due to intense AA fire.
During the night of 28/29 July, 554 US Twentieth Air Force B-29 Superfortresses fly 6 incendiary raids on secondary cities and 1 bombing raid against Japan without loss.
- Mission 297: 76 B-29s attack the Tsu urban area destroying 0.84 sq mi (2.18 sq km), 57% of the city area.
- Mission 298: 61 B-29s hit the Aomori urban area destroying 1.06 sq mi (2.75 sq km), 64% of the city area; 3 others hit alternate targets.
- Mission 299: 122 B-29s attack the Ichinomiya urban area destroying 0.99 sq mi (2.56 sq km), 75% of the city area; 2 others attack alternate areas.
- Mission 300: 93 B-29s hit the Uji-Yamada urban area destroying 0.36 sq mi (0.93 sq km), 39% of the city area; 1 other hits an alternate target.
- Mission 301: 90 B-29s attack the Ogaki urban area destroying 0.48 sq mi (1.24 sq km), 40% of the city area.
- Mission 302: 29 B-29s hit the Uwajima urban area destroying 0.53 sq mi (1.37 sq km), 52% of the city area.
- Mission 303: 76 B-29s bomb the Shimotsu Oil Refinery; 75% of the tank capacity, 90% gasometer capacity and 69% of the roof area destroyed or damaged; 1 other B-29s hits an alternate target.
- 140+ P-51s, based on Iwo Jima, hit 9 objectives (airfields and military targets) in a wide area around Tokyo and attack a destroyer escort along the Chiba Peninsula, leaving it burning.
During the night of 27/28 July, the destroyer USS Callaghan (DD-792) is sunk by a kamikaze while on radar picket duty about 50 miles (80 km) southwest of Okinawa. The Japanese biplane struck the ship on the starboard side, exploded and one of the plane’s bombs penetrated the after engine room. The destroyer flooded, and the fires which ignited antiaircraft ammunition prevented nearby ships from rendering aid. She sank at 0235, 28 July 1945, with the loss of 47 members of her valiant crew. This is the last USN ship sunk by a kamikaze.
SINGAPORE: British frogmen sink the Japanese cuiser TAKAO with limpet mines.
CANADA: Minesweepers HMCS Oshawa and Rockcliffe paid off.
Destroyers HMCS Cayuga and Micmac launched Halifax, Nova Scotia.
U.S.A.: A USAAF North American B-25 Mitchell, “Old Feather”, enroute from Bedford AAFld, Massachusetts, to Newark AAFld, New Jersey, hits the fog-shrouded Empire State Building in New York City directly on the 79th floor. There are three men aboard the B-25, the pilot, Lt. Col. William F. Smith, Jr., the flight engineer and a sailor hitching a ride home; all are killed. Also killed are 11 employees of the War Relief Services, a Roman Catholic charity; 23 others are injured. The aircraft’s wings are sheared off and one engine tears across the 78th floor, through the opposite wall destroying a penthouse on the roof of a neighboring 12-story building. The other engine and the fuselage punch an 18 by 20-foot (5.49 by 6.10 m) hole in the building. Fortunately, it is a Saturday or the casualties would have been greater. (John Nicholas and Jack McKillop)
WASHINGTON: The U.S. Senate ratifies the United Nations Charter.
Minesweeper USS Tanager commissioned.
Destroyer USS Corry launched.
Submarine USS Cusk launched.
The top pop tunes today are (1) “The More I See You” by Dick
Haymes; (2) “Dream” by The Pied Pipers; (3) “Sentimental Journey” by Les
Brown and his Orchestra with vocal by Doris Day which was ranked Number 3
for the year; and (4) “Oklahoma Hills” by Jack Guthrie.
From Combinedfleet.com the story of the disabling of the Takao
26 July 1945: British Operation “Struggle”:
The British, after taking Rangoon, Burma, are fast moving towards Singapore. TAKAO and MYOKO’s eight-inch guns pose a threat to any forces that may try to cross the causeway from Johore, Malaya to Singapore Island. The cruisers could also wreak havoc with Allied shipping attacking from seaward.
Lt G. S. C. Clarabut’s submarine HMS STYGIAN departs Brunei and tows S/Lt Frank Ogden’s midget submarine HMS XE3 towards Singapore. HMS SPARK tows HMS XE1, under Lt J. E. Smart who is assigned to attack MYOKO.
30 July 1945:
At 0600, S/Lt Ogden and his passage crew turn XE3 over to Lt Ian Fraser and his three-man crew to execute the attack on TAKAO. At 2300, XE3 slips her tow at 036 degrees from the Horsburgh Light. Intelligence briefed them that the buoys marking the channel swept through the minefield would be lit, but all are extinguished except the Horsburgh Light.
31 July 1945:
At 0217, the main engine is stopped and they creep past a listening post using the electric motor only. About 0240, Fraser fixes their position at 8. 3 miles from Johore. He goes ahead on his main engine at 4.5 knots. At 0400, a large tanker and an escorting motor launch come into view closing at high speed. XE3 dives. About 0420, she surfaces, but the two ships are still nearby, heading towards them. XE3 dives again.
As XE3 makes her way up the Johore Strait her echo-sounder registers the depth at thirty feet as she crosses the Johore Shoal. At 0800 they pass through the boom guarding the harbor. At 1250, TAKAO comes into view. Suddenly, a liberty boat full of sailors passes by at about 40 feet, but without spotting XE3.
Fraser maneuvers XE3 into position under TAKAO with only a foot of water between her and the cruiser’s keel. Leading Seaman Magennis dons his breathing appartus, succeeds in cleaning away marine growth and plants six limpet mines spread across 45 feet of TAKAO’s hull. Magennis re-enters the midget and her crew operates the hand wheels to drop the two side cargoes - one full of two tons of high explosive and the other the empty limpet carrier. The HE charge falls away, but the limpet carrier refuses to budge.
TAKAO slowly settles with the tide. XE-3 is trapped under her bilge keel. After much thrashing with the motor and pumping water the midget frees herself from the cruiser. Now, the flooded limpet carrier has to be ditched. The only way to release it is by hand. Magennis, already exhausted, dons his breathing apparatus again and completes the task. At 2130, some but not all of the limpet mines explode and blow a 23 by 10 foot hole in the starboard side of TAKAO’s hull. Her keel buckles, the blast disables her turrets and damages her rangefinder, but she does not sink. Postwar, it is learned that she was manned by a skeleton crew and had no ammunition aboard for her 8-inch main armament.
Later, Lt Fraser and Leading Seaman Magennis are each awarded Britain’s highest military award for valor - the Victoria Cross.
Wiki entry on IJN Takao...
“Destroyer USS Corry launched.”
This rang a bell as I recognized the name of the Corry so I consulted the great oracle BING and came up with this.
The USS Corry DD-463 had been sunk on 6 June 1944 off Utah beach.
But back to haragei. Japanese language at the higher levels is nothing if not diplomatic, as befits a people knit together by a combination of (supposed) racial purity, Confucianism, and having to live cheek-by-jowl with each other. Communication is never ever direct, always roundabout and metaphorical: you let your soul rather than your mouth speak, and the listener picks up on the cues and gets the meaning without the meaning having to be said.
Moreover, the decision-making process in Japan is referred to as nemawashi 根回し, a term which refers to bonsai tree root-pruning. Group decisions are only made after round after round after round of roundabout discussion, deliberation, analysis, and ensuring a consensus of all involved parties, particularly all involved authorities. It might be described as ready-aim-ready-aim-ready-aim-ready-aim-ready-aim-ready-aim-ready-aim-ready-aim-fire. While the nemawashi process is going on, everyone has to wait for the consensus to build.
Which takes us to mokusatsu, 黙殺. When PM Suzuki responded to the Potsdam Declaration, he used the term mokusatsu, and people have for the last 70 years or so debated just what the word was supposed to mean. It literally means "kill with silence," and it came across to the US as a slap in the face, that the Declaration was beneath the contempt of the Japanese government and so did not deserve a response. IIRC, it was this that prompted Truman to drop the bomb as an in-your-face response.
The problem, of course, is that what Suzuki may have meant was simply that the Declaration would not be accepted, rejected, or (attempt to be) negotiated until the nemawashi process was completed--something that would be obvious to any Japanese who listened, not to the words, but to the haragei. Or it could have meant that the Japanese government would ignore the Declaration until it came up with its own counteroffer. Or it could have meant, but almost certainly did not mean, that the Japanese wanted to give the Allies a slap in the face and a complete refusal to consider terms of surrender...
...except that this is exactly what the Allies took the word as meaning, because they got Suzuki's response in a Japanese-to-English translation that got the words correct and the meaning incorrect, because the meaning was hidden in haragei.
Would it have made any difference if the Allies had understood what Suzuki meant by mokusatsu? Probably not: Atlee evidently didn't care what happened to Japan (choosing Bevin as his foreign minister partly proves that, I think), Chiang was by this time more concerned with Mao than with Japan, Stalin wanted to loot Mongolia and Manchuria and maybe get the northern half of Japan...and Americans wanted to see the Japanese grovel the way they had seen the Nazis grovel, if not more. But history is a series of what ifs, and this is one of the bigger "what ifs" of WWII.
Thank-you for your comments. I’ll chew on this one all day and come back later for a second helping.
It is foggy in NYC this morning. Keep your radio on.
It is interesting to read about the nascent civil rights movement on page 12. I guess Negroes was the respectable term then?
Yes. Through most of the sixties.
There is a time for subtlety, and a time not to be subtle.
Obviously, the Japanese warmongers didn’t know the difference.
Personally, I’m quite averse to this particular cultural trait of the Japanese. I consider it to be a form of sophistry, the shrouding of the truth rather than its forth-telling. In other words, I think it, generally-speaking, dishonest and deceitful.
I much favor Truman’s American style. Flat out tell it like it is.
Or like LeMay’s. ‘We’re going to flatten these cities. Get out or die.’
My dad, in the 20th Armored, has left Le Havre en route to the USofA. He'll be back in L.A. on a 30-day furlough, awaiting transshipment to the Far East for Operation Downfall, when the A-bombs go BANG.
Thanks for the cultural insights. One would have hoped that the Japanese would be more “diplomatic” in their dealings with the United States. This was a two-way street. Sure, the Americans should have consulted people like former Ambassador Grew who might have discerned what you said about the true Japanese meaning behind the words. On the other hand, it might have behooved the Japanese to have known how to better state their position in terms more understandable to the West.
But then again, these are the people who thought they could lay a declaration of war on Cordell Hull’s desk and start dropping bombs on Pearl Harbor 30 minutes later and not make Americans mad as hell. I don’t think the bad typist in the Japanese Embassy made a bit of difference. We were going to be mad as hell no matter what.
So I’ll play a “what if” and try to not break henkster’s law. What if the Japanese response had been:
“We are studying your proposal and will provide a formal answer after due deliberation.”
The American response would have been: “You’re stalling for time. What isn’t clear about these terms? Either you accept or reject them.” American military superiority is evident from the propaganda leaflets and LeMay’s statement: “They can’t do anything about it.” The only Japanese response that was going to stop a bomb from being dropped on Hiroshima was “We Accept.”
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