Why was USN cruiser shooting so poor?

From the Washington Naval Treaty to the end of the Second World War.
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aurora
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Re: Why was USN cruiser shooting so poor?

Post by aurora » Wed Dec 17, 2014 5:13 pm

What must never be forgotten is the fact that just over 50 years ago, submariners were forced to engage the enemy for 18 months with ordnance that proved to be at least 70 percent unreliable. Often, Japanese merchantmen would enter port with unexploded Mark XIV torpedoes thrust into their hulls. Despite the problems with ordnance until late 1942, American submariners, a mere two percent of U.S. naval personnel, sank more than 1,178 merchant vessels and 214 warships, totalling more than 5,600,000 tons. They sacrificed 52 submarines, 374 officers and 3,131 enlisted men from their close-knit ranks. The Silent Service suffered 40 percent of all naval casualties in the Pacific, yet managed to destroy 55 percent of all Japanese ships. American submarines succeeded where the Germans had twice failed–in the systematic and complete blockade of an island nation.

One can only speculate as to the war's outcome had there been reliable torpedoes available from the onset. As for the American submarine campaign against Japan, we must always honor its sacrifices, take pride in its accomplishments and continue to learn from its mistakes–mistakes that fostered a scandal described by Clay Blair, Jr., as 'the worst in the history of any kind of warfare.'

- See more at: http://www.historynet.com/us-torpedo-tr ... NoZrH.dpuf
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Re: Why was USN cruiser shooting so poor?

Post by Garyt » Wed Dec 17, 2014 7:36 pm

Hate to cast any rain on the parade, Aurora :D

But I'd like to point out that Japan was by far worse than Allied nations when it came to ASW.

They actually had a decent amount of escorts, contrary to popular belief, and their sonar was not bad.

But they lacked a fair amount of things
1) Unlike the US, they did not escort merchant convoys with carriers, even of an "escort" variety.
2) They failed to institute convoying until the middle of 1943.
3) They did not have a dedicated Escort Command along the lines of the British Atlantic effort until September 1943.
4) Their escorts lacked an effective forward throwing depth charge launcher like the Allies Hedgehog or similar.
5) They had virtually non-existent ASW training, including training the escorts to work as a team.
6) They lack a homing torpedo like the US "Fido" for ASW use.

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aurora
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Re: Why was USN cruiser shooting so poor?

Post by aurora » Wed Dec 17, 2014 8:06 pm

Fair comment Gary- never felt a drop-but you will have noted US submarines did not receive the improved torpedoes until late 42 early 43-which will almost match with the IJN introduction of Convoy Escorts;albeit poorly trained and poorly armed.However the good news was that USN destroyers got the improved torpedoes too.
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Re: Why was USN cruiser shooting so poor?

Post by Garyt » Thu Dec 18, 2014 1:03 am

However the good news was that USN destroyers got the improved torpedoes too.
Good news only if you are not Japanese :D
until late 42 early 43-which will almost match with the IJN introduction of Convoy Escorts
Good point. I don't think the timing of both is purely circumstantial.

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