Killing Yamamoto

Discussion in 'War Against Japan' started by Bob Guercio, Aug 19, 2009.

  1. Bob Guercio

    Bob Guercio Senior Member

    Hi All,

    I understand that Admiral Nimitz corresponded with Washington prior to launching the raid to kill Yamamoto. I also understand that the reason for this dialogue was not to get Washington's permission but to find out if Yamamoto could be replaced by someone better.

    Is this true?

    Presuming that it is, I don't understand why it would matter if Yamamoto could have been replaced by someone better!

    Let's presume that there could have been someone better. Wouldn't the disruption in the Japanese war machine caused by Yamamoto's death have trumped his being replaced by someone better?

    Regards,
    Bob
     
  2. James S

    James S Very Senior Member

    I would think the Americans would have been aware of pool of officers , their potential and who might have "been in line" for promotion.
    Taking him out would seem to have ben still the best option.
     
  3. Za Rodinu

    Za Rodinu Hot air manufacturer

    Organizations tend to be quite good at replacing members that stop working for one reason or other, that's one of the reasons they are called organizations. Adm. Isoroku Yamamoto was soon replaced by Adm. Mineichi Koga. By the time Adm. Yamamoto died Japan was not going to win the war, with his death this course was maintained.

    One Yamamoto more or one Yamamoto less, it would make no difference already. As Sean connery said in The Untouchables, "Just like a wop to bring a knife to a gun fight". In this case a Jap.
     
  4. A-58

    A-58 Not so senior Member

    Well, he was fair game afterall. We were just happening to be reading their mail, and decided to take out Yamamoto when his itenerary was discovered. A by-product of the action was that it had to have dealt a blow to their morale.
     
  5. Bob Guercio

    Bob Guercio Senior Member

    I don't think that my question was understood.

    Suppose there was somebody better than Yamamoto in line for the job! If this were the case, would Nimitz have still killed him?

    It sounds like he would not simply because he asked the question.

    My thinking is that, in either case, whether or not there was someone to replace Yamamoto, he should have been killed. If there was someone better, the disruption caused to the Japanese war machine by Yamamoto's death would have been much more important to us than having someone better than Yamamoto in the job.
     
  6. Za Rodinu

    Za Rodinu Hot air manufacturer

    To your question in bold, Yes!

    To your last paragraph, disruption is temporay, the 2nd-in-Command will jump to the post upwards in the same minute the leader is found dead. If a beter qualified person (if any) will get nominated an in the saddle may be a variable.

    This can happen at any moment in a military (or other) organization, death or no death. It's quite common for a leader to be dismissed and another guy stepping on his shoes. Guderian was dismissed, so was von Manstein, Wavell was sent to India, etc, etc., and things didn't fall apart. Organizations will replace an individual, it's never a tragedy.

    (please excuse if I'm still not understanding what you mean)
     
  7. spidge

    spidge RAAF RESEARCHER Patron

    Just to add one of my fathers quotes:

    Cemeteries are full of people who could not have been done without!
     
    A-58 likes this.
  8. A-58

    A-58 Not so senior Member

    Your question is pretty close to a "what if" scenario anyway. That really doesn't bother me, but it does rankle people on this forum who pride themselves on not entertaining "what if's." If not, then I apologize for the statement, and will retract it.

    And keeping with your scenario, just maybe if Yamamoto was replaced by someone with superior capabilities, sooner or later we'd figure that out too. We'd also figure out when he was going to inspect the troops, and then we'd splash his a$$ too.
     
  9. Bob Guercio

    Bob Guercio Senior Member

    To your question in bold, Yes!

    To your last paragraph, disruption is temporay, the 2nd-in-Command will jump to the post upwards in the same minute the leader is found dead. If a beter qualified person (if any) will get nominated an in the saddle may be a variable.



    You are implying that disruption is not that big a deal. If that is the case, why would Nimitz have still killed Yamamoto if Yamamoto could have been replaced with someone better? It seems like that decision would have hurt the war effort of the United States!
     
  10. Bob Guercio

    Bob Guercio Senior Member

    Your question is pretty close to a "what if" scenario anyway. That really doesn't bother me, but it does rankle people on this forum who pride themselves on not entertaining "what if's." If not, then I apologize for the statement, and will retract it.



    I do wish that the "What if" police would mind their own business and let the moderators do their job!
     
  11. Gerard

    Gerard Seelow/Prora

    Ok Bob, in relation to this issue there are a number of ways to answer this
    but the main answer is "Japan gets hit by a number of Atomic bombs and is forced to surrender". Replacing Yamamoto, not replacing him, its doesnt matter. The manhatten project ensured that all "alternative scenarios" are a moot point.

    BTW, there's nothing wrong with A-58's post. It is a "what if" scenario, an extremely well-worded one at that but still, one nonetheless. A-58 feel free to call it as you see it.

    As has been pointed out here before there are two answers to "what if" questions

    EUROPE: US nukes Berlin, War ends.

    PACIFIC: US nukes Tokyo, Emperor found out to be human after all, war ends.

    Maybe I'm doing your question a disservice but whilst it might have made a difference tactically, strategically it wouldnt have mattered. Once the US entered the fray on the Allied side, the endgame was a question of "when" rather than "if".
     
    A-58 likes this.
  12. Za Rodinu

    Za Rodinu Hot air manufacturer

    ...but whilst it might have made a difference tactically, strategically it wouldnt have mattered. Once the US entered the fray on the Allied side, the endgame was a question of "when" rather than "if".

    Also the fact that the Emperor's laundry lists (figuratively speaking) were being intercepted and all plans were on the table every day helped a bit.

    You are implying that disruption is not that big a deal. If that is the case, why would Nimitz have still killed Yamamoto if Yamamoto could have been replaced with someone better? It seems like that decision would have hurt the war effort of the United States!

    It's not the disruption, I had a boss having a heart attack, it was a mess but all routines kept ticking, it was only a matter of kicking the next talking head upstairs. What mattered in this case was the quality of the Guy On Top. The idea was to shoot the GOT as he was too bright for confort. Then if the new GOT was as bright then you'd have to shoot him too, but that was unlikely.

    The Brits had a plan to bump Hitler off. They gave up on that idea when it was realized that letting the F├╝hrer stay on top was the best option for Allied victory. I think this was discussed here sometime.
     
  13. Bob Guercio

    Bob Guercio Senior Member

    I guess I am not at all making myself understood so one last shot but from a different angle.

    In 1943, Nimitz knew of the whereabouts of Yamamoto and had a plan to kill him.

    Before killing him, Nimitz asked Washington if Yamamoto could be replaced by someone better. At least this is my understanding why he consulted Washington.

    Was this a logical thing for Numitz to do?

    This is my last shot at trying to make myself understood.:)

    Bob
     
  14. Za Rodinu

    Za Rodinu Hot air manufacturer

    I think I see. "If there is someone smarter, should we leave the present guy in place?", is that it? Well, I.Y. had proved to be smart enough so it would be a good idea to snuff him in any case. In the unlikely case there was a better one in line of succession, he could be snuffed as well in due course.
     
  15. Bob Guercio

    Bob Guercio Senior Member

    I think I see. "If there is someone smarter, should we leave the present guy in place?", is that it? Well, I.Y. had proved to be smart enough so it would be a good idea to snuff him in any case. In the unlikely case there was a better one in line of succession, he could be snuffed as well in due course.

    Exactly and I agree with you! But a follow up question!

    Why did Nimitz consult with Washington?

    I originally thought that he was concerned about being accused of assassination and wanted the ok from Washington. I am sure that most of you, as I do, would say that this was a ridiculous concern of Nimitz. But this is what I thought.

    Recently, I'm not sure where but it may very well have been in this forum, the conclusion was reached that this was not the reason for consulting Washington. The reason was that Nimitz wanted to know if there was somebody better to replace Yamamoto.

    So, if the reason was to find out if there was somebody better to replace Yamamoto, why did he need or want to know this? Logicly, regardless of the answer, Yamamoto should be and was killed.

    Bob
     
  16. spidge

    spidge RAAF RESEARCHER Patron

    Bob,

    I must say I have not heard of this interpretation of Yamamoto's assassination. FDR was provided with the intelligence report and ordered Knox to instruct Nimitz to get Yamamoto as he was the architect of Pearl Harbor and his death would be a blow to Japan's military morale.

    Nimitz may have been covering his a**e by asking that question as American policy was not to target enemy heavy weights.
     
    Formerjughead likes this.
  17. Bob Guercio

    Bob Guercio Senior Member

    Bob,


    Nimitz may have been covering his a**e by asking that question as American policy was not to target enemy heavy weights.

    This is what I think!

    Bob
     
  18. Formerjughead

    Formerjughead Senior Member

    The only person who Nimitz asked for permission from was Adm. Halsey, Commander of Naval Forces Pacific.

    Nimtz forwarded the information from the "Magic" intercept to Washington, up his chain of command, and it came back to him with a "green light".
    Nimitz determined that it was unfeasible for the Navy to undertake the mission, due to range limitations of it's aircraft, and the task was assigned to 339th fighter squadron.

    ( Operation Vengeance - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia )
     
  19. Za Rodinu

    Za Rodinu Hot air manufacturer

    Om mani padme hom. :curtsey:
     
  20. Smudger Jnr

    Smudger Jnr Our Man in Berlin

    To me it was a logical decision to intercept Yamamoto's plane when the information of its flight plan and timing was decyphered.

    It was too good an opportunity to miss.

    Regards
    Tom
     

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