Marianas and Leyte Gulf; Mirror Images?

Discussions on WW2 in the Pacific and the Sino-Japanese War.
User avatar
sailorsam
Member
Posts: 57
Joined: 14 Feb 2021 23:10
Location: Merryland USA

Marianas and Leyte Gulf; Mirror Images?

Post by sailorsam » 20 Jul 2021 21:16

Many of you will know that in the great battle of Leyte Gulf, the IJN succeeded in drawing away the USN's main battle force (under Admrial Halsey), leaving their transports relatively undefended. Halsey was severely criticized for what was considered to be carelessness.

Previous battle was the Marianas. In this one, the USN admiral, Spruance, withheld his carrier forces to protect the transports, fearing that the IJN attack was a feint.

so in the Marianas, Spruance held back fearing an IJN feint; in Leyte Gulf, the IJN really did feint, and Halsey totally bought it.

in the event; US airpower overwhelmed the inferior Japanese planes and pilots, but if the 1941 quality had been there (I know, 'what if'...), the US Navy could have taken some serious losses. (IIRC, first day of the battle, Japanese ships were not even fired upon by US planes or surface ships.)
@ Leyte Gulf, a handful of small ships ('Taffy 3') held off the Japanese force until the admiral concluded that there was too much US firepower and he withdrew. Critics suggest the IJN could have won a victory if they had pressed the attack.

One could say that the IJN out-strategized the USN in both battles, but did not have the resources to exploit.

thoughts?

got this idea from the book 'Eagle Against the Sun', good review of WWII in the Pacific.
https://www.amazon.com/Eagle-Against-Su ... oks&sr=1-1
Saint Peter, let these men enter Heaven; they served their time in hell.

Return to “WW2 in the Pacific & Asia”