Plans for the Invasion of Japan WW2

Discussion in 'War Against Japan' started by 17thDYRCH, Sep 23, 2010.

  1. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer Pearl Harbor Myth Buster

    I'm going to show my ignorance on this with these two questions. How would he get home sooner that way? Wouldn't there be occupation duty in Japan as well?

    Would the allied soliders in NW Europe destined for Japan have been shipped across the Atlantic and then go by trains to the west coast of North America? He might have been home to Canada then, but it would be a short leave, if any, I would think.

    The US troops were transited through the States for a leave before going to the West Coast for embarkation for the training sites. I presume the Canadians did the same thing.
     
  2. fyrftr422

    fyrftr422 Junior Member

    I haven't asked him exactly how it would be quicker, maybe I assumed he meant that and he just didn't want to sit around and do guard duty for Germans. He had only turned 18 in April of 1945 and he didn't see more than 2-3 months action as a 17-yr old so maybe that was his way of getting back in the fight (he was also wounded - grenade shrapnel in neck and back - on April 24 and celebrated VE-Day from a bed). I think they also knew Japan was on the ropes and since the Americans pretty much ran the show in the Pacific, maybe the thought was that the US would do most if not all the occupation duty once it all ended. Could be they also thought or hoped that the war in the pacific would end before they ever got there, meaning they would more than likely just get sent back home, rather than shipped back to Germany for occupation duty

    I'm going to show my ignorance on this with these two questions. How would he get home sooner that way? Wouldn't there be occupation duty in Japan as well?

    Would the allied soliders in NW Europe destined for Japan have been shipped across the Atlantic and then go by trains to the west coast of North America? He might have been home to Canada then, but it would be a short leave, if any, I would think.

    As far as I know, the Canadians that volunteered for Japan were to be shipped back to Canada to train in the ways of a US combat Division, with US equipment, then ship out to the Pacific in time for the invasion.
     
  3. martin14

    martin14 Senior Member

    I haven't asked him exactly how it would be quicker, maybe I assumed he meant that and he just didn't want to sit around and do guard duty for Germans. He had only turned 18 in April of 1945 and he didn't see more than 2-3 months action as a 17-yr old so maybe that was his way of getting back in the fight (he was also wounded - grenade shrapnel in neck and back - on April 24 and celebrated VE-Day from a bed). I think they also knew Japan was on the ropes and since the Americans pretty much ran the show in the Pacific, maybe the thought was that the US would do most if not all the occupation duty once it all ended. Could be they also thought or hoped that the war in the pacific would end before they ever got there, meaning they would more than likely just get sent back home, rather than shipped back to Germany for occupation duty



    As far as I know, the Canadians that volunteered for Japan were to be shipped back to Canada to train in the ways of a US combat Division, with US equipment, then ship out to the Pacific in time for the invasion.


    Yes, shipped home now, 30 days leave at home, then ship out again.

    As it was, some Canadian troops did occupation duty until June 1946,
    a year after the war.

    Interesting choice.
     
  4. Driver-op

    Driver-op WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    I was with 3rd British Infantry Div and early in 1945 was sent back to UK for infantry officer training to take part in the invasion of Japan. I thanked God for the bomb and was posted to Warley Barracks, Essex, to become 2i/c of a company training new recruits - only a bus ride from home - Great.
     
  5. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer Pearl Harbor Myth Buster

    I was with 3rd British Infantry Div and early in 1945 was sent back to UK for infantry officer training to take part in the invasion of Japan. I thanked God for the bomb and was posted to Warley Barracks, Essex, to become 2i/c of a company training new recruits - only a bus ride from home - Great.

    Sir! If anybody says the bombs weren't needed I'll slap them an additional time for you.
     
  6. arnhem44

    arnhem44 Member

    Let me be the one to set the cat among the pigeons;

    I think the casualties of the americans for a war on Japanese soil is exaggerated.

    Arguments:
    1) It is always best/safe to put in higher estimates by the planners , as the actual casualties that are lower are then publicly (or by the Senate/Government top ) accepted.
    There is no risk that the battle would be called off by frightfully high numbers as Japan HAD to be invaded/crushed anyhow.

    2) Japanese airplane numbers may have been more than estimated..but WHAT type of planes were these ? I'm sure you can make a kamikaze plane out of a piper alpha..but no military in the world would scare that. And would all of them really be operational ?? (airfields, pilots, mechanics, supplies..."one" plane on its own is nothing).

    3) This document talks of "2000 kamikaze planes ready at the start" and "endless kamikaze attacks". Well , I beg to differ; once you throw these 2000 planes in the skies, it 'll be all wasted in 10 days (200 a day?) .. hardly "endless".

    4) Much of the high casualty rate is based on the losses on attacks on tiny islands and atols in the pacific whereas in Japan they get the room to manoeuvre (once out of beachhead).
    See Normandy: high or equal losses in first month..germans throw in everything they got along the beachhead (logically = smallest front circumference..and artillery has booming time)...but once broken through = finished for Germany /as is japan.
    It's like basing hand fights on a rugby field on the experience of fights in pubtoilets.

    5) Japan , much as Germany has a large population that has not or dared not to speak against their military. NSDAP had only ever a maximum of 30% (?correct me here) of the votes of germany and it showed that those 70% never fought on the streets of Germany (unless forced in the Volkssturm..but even so..who is to tell they actually fought?!). Likewise , there are documents/letters that show deep concern with Japanese (elder) familymembers. There are enough japanese pilots that didnot volunteer for kamikaze ("refusing" is another statement).
    So , I don't believe there would be 50 million civilians ready and prepared to fight each and every allied soldier.

    As with the Gestapo/SS, as with the Cheka, civilians had to be pushed/forced to do this.
    If there are no (not enough) Kempeitai around, I'm sure there would be not much fanaticism in local folk.
    (Autonomous) Fanaticism is only there in people who are receptive...mostly the indoctrinated youth and they (those who are truly effective as fighting men) are already in the japanese army.


    edit:
    6) and generally what surprising material did the japanese have ?
    No supertanks (muhaha), no modernized artillery, old frame airplanes (perhaps only a handfull of new not fully tested/perfected flying kamikaze bombs), yes one or two super subs with 20 improved torpedos (20 only !) but useless navy, no V2 rockets, no atomic bombs,...
    only poison gas ..that is/was the only worry.... (which is why the US also prepared (!) for its own use of poison gas).
    But WW1 showed that poison gas on a strategic level was not effective.
    And how (long) could an isolated japanese army sustain without food, ammo , repairs ? Think hard..once it comes to hunger, there is no "super"soldier.
     
  7. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer Pearl Harbor Myth Buster

    arnhem44, I strongly disagree, based on the information from books by John Ray Skates, Ben Frank, and the good Mr. Giangreco, among others. The Japanese strength on Kyushu was slightly underestimated, for one thing. Instead of ~450.000 troops, they had over 700,000.

    Skates cites figures of approximately 2.000 midget submarines, 3.000 Okha bombs, 5.000 airplanes and 10.000 suicide boats, IIRC. And they had the fuel to operate them, that "last ditch defense" reserve would have been sufficient to make life interesting on the seas off the coast.
     
  8. Wills

    Wills Very Senior Member

  9. Slipdigit

    Slipdigit Old Hickory Recon

    I'm going to show my ignorance on this with these two questions. How would he get home sooner that way? Wouldn't there be occupation duty in Japan as well?

    Would the allied soliders in NW Europe destined for Japan have been shipped across the Atlantic and then go by trains to the west coast of North America? He might have been home to Canada then, but it would be a short leave, if any, I would think.

    Yes, shipped home now, 30 days leave at home, then ship out again.

    Interesting choice.

    The US 30th ID was ear-marked for Japan. Marion Sanford of the 30th Recon knew in early June that his division was headed that way. What he remembered was that they would get 30 days leave in the States, at home, then reassemble for training. They had lost a good many from his troop who had sufficient points that they came home early and were not going to be a part of the upcoming campaign.

    As it worked out, the bombs were dropped before the 30th ID ever left England, so he knew that he would be getting released when he got back to the States.

    The phrase 'one plane on it's own is nothing' caught my attention - here a film of outstanding courage and seamanship - the USS Franklin. The one that got through. 724 KIA in one attack.


    Saga of the USS Franklin : U.S. Navy : Free Download & Streaming : Internet Archive

    The ship that would not die.
     
  10. Wills

    Wills Very Senior Member

    KOKURA'S LUCK - Nagasaki was the secondary target - Kokura the primary!




    Kokura was the primary target of the nuclear weapon "Fat Man" on August 9, 1945, but on the morning of the raid, the city was obscured by clouds and smoke from an earlier fire-bombing of the neighboring city of Yahata. Since the mission commander Major Charles Sweeney had orders to drop the bomb visually and not by radar, he diverted to the secondary target, Nagasaki. People now use the phrase "Kokura luck" to mean the lucky avoidance of some great misfortune as a result of this event (Wiki)
     
  11. arnhem44

    arnhem44 Member

    The phrase 'one plane on it's own is nothing' caught my attention - here a film of outstanding courage and seamanship - the USS Franklin. The one that got through. 724 KIA in one attack.


    What I mean is to get that one plane in the air as far as that target (carrier) you'll need to count/register more than just the plane.

    The whole support /control system for it.

    As a similar example: In the US today you have a huge junkyard of old planes with perhaps a huge amount (those in capsules) capable of flying. But that doesn't mean that next week the US can have them all ready and prepared to launch a fleet of 5000 kamikazes...
    And that is even considering peace time.

    Imagine a Japan continuously bombarded and strafed...



    The sentence that caught my eye to detect exaggeration was :

    Carrier pilots crippled by fatigue would have to land time and time again to rearm and refuel. Guns would malfunction from the heat of continuous firing and ammunition would become scarce. Gun crews would be
    exhausted by nightfall, but still the waves of kamikaze would continue.

    :lol: really ? This is the way to scientifically prove the millions of allied casualties ?


    I can imagine if all 2000 kamikazes would focus on ONE carrier within ONE hour on the SAME day that that would give a hard time for its crew (and fleet around it).. but you don't suppose that is a realistic assumption . And even so, that would result in the loss of one Carrier versus all the Japanese airdefense within the first day.
    Not bad result for the invasion of Japan.
     
  12. Wills

    Wills Very Senior Member

    I do not wish to get into anything - it is too far into the past to start scoring points or making score cards I was saluting very brave men. Out to you.
     
  13. arnhem44

    arnhem44 Member

    I do not wish to get into anything - it is too far into the past to start scoring points or making score cards I was saluting very brave men. Out to you.

    I know you mean to salute the US crew members, but the way you said it , looks like you salute the one japanese kamikaze that got through... (btw irrespective of his ugly war government/monarchy , militarily he would also deserve a salute).

    But the point I want to make is not scoring cards, but to raise an awareness and healthy suspicion on any book or investigation (especially those done by a single narrator) producing numbers and statistics and assumptions based on them or other assumptions, without detailing them exactly.
    Predicting is tough. Predicting military campaigns is very tough and predicting the weather is tougher still ;).
     
  14. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer Pearl Harbor Myth Buster

    I agree that a single-sourced estimation is suspect ipso facto. But the dozen or so books I've read on the topic plus the original source documents they cited do not give me any choice but to believe Downfall would have been anything but a blood bath.
     
  15. rockape252

    rockape252 Senior Member

    Hi,

    I have followed this topic with great interest.

    My only input would be the use of "Poison gas" (Chemical Weapons) by the Allies against the Japanese mainland.


    First.

    After the discovery of the ill treatment of Allied POWs by the Japanese I think there would be little Moral guilt about using such weapons.


    Second

    The use of Persistant Chemical Weapons such as the Mustard group as a Pre-Emptive attack against the poorly trained and protected civilians as well as service personnel would swamp the medical services and cause a severe drop in Morale.


    However.

    Chemical Weapons are notoriously a double edged weapon and the Allies would have to be prepared against changes of wind creating a downwind hazard to their own troops.


    I feel that the use of the 2 Nuclear Bombs was justifiable. Given that Japanese civilians including very young children were trained in combat with a bamboo spear to repel the invaders.

    The use of these 2 Bombs most certainly saved many thousands of Allied and possibly Millions of Japanese lives.


    Regards, Mick D.
     
  16. Gary Kennedy

    Gary Kennedy Member

    The subject of whether the atomic bombs should or should not have been dropped on Japanese cities I think will always polarise opinion. The Allied estimates of their projected losses in a conventional amphibious assault and the following ground campaign can never be proven, as the actions did not take place. I seem to recall the actual losses in the Normandy assault landings were far lower than the gloomy predictions of the planners, but plenty enough blood was shed in the months afterwards to meet their expectations.

    In August 1945 Imperial Japan had not relinquished any of the overseas holdings taken in its conquests of 1941-42 campaigns without the need for a protracted ground operation to evict them from such. There remained substantial forces in mainland Asia, the Home Islands and the Far East. Wherever the Allies had faced the Imperial Japanese in land combat, they had been involved in prolonged operations against an enemy who routinely, though not entirely, opted to fight to the death rather than surrender when the military situation proved hopeless.

    When your enemy has shown no inclination to abandon this central tenant of their martial philosophy, during the battles of 1942, 1943, 1944 and 1945, and 1946 will see you fighting in their homeland, I fail to share the optimism expressed in some quarters that resistance was on the verge of collapse and everyone with sense knew the jig was up. I would have expected the Japanese defenders to display a similar welcome to the US forces that the defenders of Berlin did to the Red Army a few months earlier, but that is of course more supposition.

    It is difficult to see how an assault by land, sea and air forces against mainland Japan would have resulted in fewer overall Japanese civilian casualties than were inflicted by the two bombs, as would a protracted blockade that would have very likely lead to widespread famine.

    It would certainly have resulted in many Allied losses, though you can argue till the cows come home about just how many that would have been. If you subscribe to the alternate universes theory perhaps someone knows, I'll go for far in excess of one.

    Gary
     
    Dave55 likes this.
  17. Dave55

    Dave55 Very Senior Member

    It would certainly have resulted in many Allied losses, though you can argue till the cows come home about just how many that would have been. If you subscribe to the alternate universes theory perhaps someone knows, I'll go for far in excess of one.

    Gary


    Terrific post.

    We may not know how many allied solders would have been killed during an invasion, but one would have been too many if it could have been avoided, especially if you were the one.
     
  18. fyrftr422

    fyrftr422 Junior Member

    I saw my wife's Grandfather today and asked him about this very topic and his rationale for opting to join the 6th Canadian Infantry Division (which would have been part of the Commonwealth Corps).

    They were told that Occupation Duty could potentially be as many as 2 years whereas, if they volunteered for the Pacific theatre, they were sent home, given 30-day leave, then off to training somewhere in Canada. He, and they all, pretty much knew that Japan was on the ropes and the hope was that it would all be wrapped up before it came time for them to actually see combat. As it turned out, he was right and the last of his Regiment (Algonquin) didn't leave Germany till early 1946.
     
  19. canuck

    canuck Token Colonial Patron

    I agree that a single-sourced estimation is suspect ipso facto. But the dozen or so books I've read on the topic plus the original source documents they cited do not give me any choice but to believe Downfall would have been anything but a blood bath.

    I totally agree.
    The 90,000 American casualties from the Iwo Jima and Okinawa campaigns, far higher than estimated, were the most recent (June 45) actions on which the U.S. could base projections for a mainland invasion. Under the circumstances, I fail to see any cause for optimism that a fanatical defence of the homeland would be easily or cheaply overcome given those experiences.
     
  20. canuck

    canuck Token Colonial Patron

    Terrific post.

    We may not know how many allied solders would have been killed during an invasion, but one would have been too many if it could have been avoided, especially if you were the one.

    Truman may well have been publicly lynched on Pennsylvania Ave. had he even delayed the deployment of the A-bomb and caused avoidable casualties. By that stage of the war it is unthinkable that anyone would doubt the absolute political necessity of using the bomb first. This debate has always been farcical in my view.
     

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