Days of Infamy: Invasion, Occupation, and Liberation of Hawaii (1941-1943)

Discussion in 'Alternate History Books and Media' started by Alterwright, Jan 23, 2019.

  1. Alterwright "You were never even a player."

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    For clarification, this thread is for Harry Turtledove's "Days of Infamy" series, in which Japan successfully attacks Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941, and follows up the attack with an invasion of the Hawaiian Islands.

    This is one of Turtledove's smaller series of stories, with only two books covering a specific point of divergence during WWII - the invasion of Hawaii after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Although events taking place outside of the region fair a bit differently in this timeline, the books tell a tightly focused story centered solely on Hawaii and the possibility of a Japanese invasion force occupying the islands, rarely putting the perspective away from events and people outside of Hawaii.

    From the pitched battles on Oahu following the Japanese invasion to the surrender of US soldiers at Honolulu in 1942, from the coronation of a puppet Hawaiian king, the harsh occupation of the islands, and eventual liberation in 1943, the series highlights the events of a hostile takeover of Hawaii in good detail.

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    For this thread, you can talk about the books themselves, fill in details, post pictures, write head-canons, discuss events, the works. Most, if not all the threads regarding this book series are old and discontinued. This thread is intended to give users a new thread for discussion.
     
  2. lukedalton Well-Known Member

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    My head-canon for this little series is that the Japanese while being succesfull in the conquest of the Hawaii were defeated in Malaysia and never occupied Indonesia, New Guinea and Singapore; with only the invasion of the Philippines being a success due to the logistic strain and resource wasting in supply the war effort in the Hawaii.
    Plus at the end of the war the Japanese obtained more or less the same treatment of OTL Germany as due to the massive war crime in the occupied Islands the americans are not in a very conciliatory mood and instead of McArthur someone more 'hardliner' is appointed
     
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  3. Historyman 14 Well-Known Member

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    The issues is does mention Japan controlling all of New Guinea and the Dutch East Indies, as well as Wake and Midway.
     
  4. Historyman 14 Well-Known Member

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    IJA officers pose for a picture, Port Moresby, 1942. From 1941 till 1943, Japan rule as the Master of Asia. From Southeast Asia to Hawaii, Japan had beaten America and the British/Commonwealth in every way possible. Only did in 1943 did the tide turn.


    [​IMG]

    Australian soldiers resting somewhere in New Guinea, 1943-1944. In the eyes of Australia, both the British and Americans had failed and failed again against Japan for two whole years, failing to protect them and force then and New Zealand to fight on their own. This would sow the seeds of the Post-War Australian Republic.

    [​IMG]
     
  5. pattontank12 Better Dead than Red!

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    With the occupation of actual United States territory and the bombing of San Francisco far more focus is going towards the Pacific Theater against than towards Europe/Africa against Nazi Germany. With the public going "why are we sending vital troops and material all the way to Africa when the Japs are bombing our cities!?" Though I still see Germany going down same as OTL only with the Soviets being even more battered and not making it as far into Europe as OTL.

    I see the lend lease program being more focused on nations that were fighting Japan like Australia and possibly China.

    Also expect the US having more focus on developing superior naval vessels and amphibious vehicles.
     
  6. Alterwright "You were never even a player."

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    Scenes of the Invasion: Road to Honolulu, 1941-1942

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    ^^^ --- Japanese artillery crew firing upon US positions around the city of Honolulu. Despite stiffening resistance around the city, it was only a matter of time before US forces would surrender

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    ^^^ --- A Japanese flame-thrower assists an assault group as they approach a harden bunker on the hills above the highway to Honolulu. US defender defenders made valiant efforts to resist, but they could not withstand the rapid movement and the aggressiveness of their Japanese counterparts for long.

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    ^^^ --- Japanese soldiers unfurl the Rising Sun as they await orders to attack a town being bombarded by Japanese dive bombers on the coast of Oahu. Besides serving as a morale boosting symbol these flags also served to mark friendly units on the ground so that Japanese aerial units would not fire o their own men.

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    ^^^ --- Japanese troops lie low as an American machine gun opens up on them. Two officers observe the situation as they try to plan out an attack to neutralize the machine gun. Aware that supplies were limited and that speed was a critical factor in succeeding with the invasion, Japanese troops took every opportunity to bypass American strong points, maneuvering, infiltrating, or outflanking them so as not to give the Americans the advantage in a fire-fight.
     
  7. Alterwright "You were never even a player."

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    Mine is that the Hawaiian Royal Army, the puppet king of Hawaii's own military force that was only the size of a battalion, were equipped with a mixture of Japanese and American surplus equipment and weapons to make them look like a unique and professional force. They would probably have their own insignia and such, but it would probably be very basic and minimal due to the chronic shortages the islands would face during the course of the occupation.

    Likely they would be armed with a mixture of Arisaka rifles or Springfields as their primary weapon.
     
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  8. Alterwright "You were never even a player."

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    Of course. Hawaii was one of a few good places for a staging area for the Americans. It had good facilities to accommodate naval and army units. Its loss to the Japanese s early in the war means that any plans for the Philippines, War Plan Orange, would be rendered ineffective and further cut off American forces in the Philippines. It also means that the Americans have to travel a greater distance and also extends the Pacific Campaign. How much of an extension would it be is up for debate.

    Germany and Japan are still going to lose either way you slice it. There will be different paths, but they all lead to the same place. By the end of this series its made clear that the Japanese taking Hawaii was more of a detriment to their forces there in the long run, a risky gamble that succeeded... but failed to give them the dividends they wanted. Sure the Japanese also sunk to out of the three carriers of the US fleet and severely set back their plans of Pacific Campaign, but the Americans returned in greater force than before. We're still dealing with the same factions as in our timeline - just that the Japanese do something different.

    As for the Soviets - this is a bit of a tangent here. The Soviets are still going to get battered in this timeline, but I believe they are still going to be ones to drive all the way into Berlin and plant the red flag over the Reichstag. They will make it very far into Europe, as far as they did in our timeline.
     
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  9. Historyman 14 Well-Known Member

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    Japan was always going to lose against America. The difference here is Japan had TL-191 Dice rolls and by 1943, the tide has turn, and its going to much harder to fight across the Pacific with Japan's stronger hold.

    With Germany, by OTL 1945, the Soviets where tired and exhausted and at the bottom of the barrel for manpower. I very much in OTL, and more so they could march any further.

    Stalingrad was still a Soviet Victory. That is true, however...

    Without any second front, with he decline of L-L, and without even any action in Italy, and America so focus on Japan, it may be Stalin conclude that the British and Americans are either incapable or unwilling to give him genuine help in the form of a second front, and that it might therefore be better to cut a deal with Hitler and then let the Germans and the Western Allies destroy each other.

    OTL, there was in fact 3 peace offers between Germany and Russia. ( December 1942, June 1943 and finally September 1943.) The June ’43 offer involved a face to face meeting between Ribbentrop and Molotov at Kirovograd. Ribbentrop offered that the future frontier between the two empires ‘should run along the Dnieper (sic)’, while Molotov wouldn’t accept anything less than the restoration of their original frontier; that is, the Curzon Line bisecting Poland.

    You could see Fascist Italy try and switch sides. (And it work out for them if Hitler pick to follow Rommel's and other German ideas of the peninsula was indefensible & should be immediately abandoned, and focus on a northern Apennines mountains. Then again, the Allies are no where to be found aside from North Africa, so...)
     
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  10. lukedalton Well-Known Member

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    I don't see a decline of L-L, more that direct military asset used in North Africa and Italy here will not happen till the Hawaii are free; probably the first use of the american troops in Europe will be during the D-Day equivalent.

    Even if the book mention that the Japanese had the same level of success of OTL...just to keep a semblance of realism i not take in consideration as it's basically impossible, just the Hawaii operation will mean put a stretch on the IJA/IJN capacity and so other operation will suffer.

    If/Once North Africa falls the Italian goverment will attempt a separate peace, what happen next depend if the German are allowed to pass the Brennero as OTL and the general situation in Italy and how many German troops are present in Italy
     
  11. pattontank12 Better Dead than Red!

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    One thing for certain is that the United States will be far less forgiving towards the Japanese than OTL, following the mess with Hawaii. Which might earn us some browny points with the mainland Asian countries like China and Korea.

    I do see Italy jumping ship once the allies achieve a D-day styled landing in western Europe. Though jury's still out if they're still in North Africa at the time or not.

    How likely would it be for post-war Europe to look like this?
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    https://www.deviantart.com/rvbomally/art/Inglourious-Basterds-348345893
     
  12. Alterwright "You were never even a player."

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    Yup. Quite possibly the United States will be even less forgiving towards Japan than in our timeline, but its unclear to me. The Japanese did some shit in the Philippines and that was still technically under US control - commonwealth, protectorate, doesn't matter how you spin it, we still and control of the place. Anyway, its likely they might be harsher toward Japan, but as to how harsh is up for debate.

    @lukedalton brings up the point that when North Africa falls (and I have to stress when it falls, not if - I think North Africa is still going to fall to the Allies there) Italy is likely to surrender. He may know more on the subject than me, but I believe that if Italy is to really be knocked out of the war they would still need to go for Sicily - to put allied boots on Italian soil to really show Mussolini his days are numbered. Its definitely debatable on whether going for Italy was strategically viable since the Allies bickered over it even in OTL, but for me an Allied landing in France with out some kind of pressure on Italy is unlikely to make the Italians capitulate. Hitler is going to make damn sure Mussolini keeps his regime going, just like he did in our timeline.

    I'm... honestly a bit confused by the map lol XD Where is East Germany? And why East Prussia on the map?
     
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  13. pattontank12 Better Dead than Red!

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    It's an alternate history map based off of Inglorious Basterds. With the Eagle Plotters having taken over Germany during ww2 after Hitler got offed.

    I'm definitely thinking Italy could have switched sides and jump ship ITTL once the allies launched D-day.

    Actually many marines were surprised by the fact that they encountered locals speaking American English when they landed on the Philippines. With most people back in the states actually being unaware about the Philippines at all, let alone it was an actual territory. Plus there's a difference between a place on the other side of the Ocean that's going to be independent in a few years anyway and a well known territory, that's rather popular in the general public and is on the verge of becoming a full blown state.
     
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  14. Matt Wiser Well-Known Member

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    Some thoughts after rereading both novels:

    1) Once Hawaii is liberated, the top military priority is to get the bases back operational as quickly as possible. Some of the escort carriers likely had both Marine and AAF fighter squadrons aboard to fly them in to fields that had been retaken (similar to the Marianas OTL), to relieve the carriers. Top priority at Pearl will be to clear the harbor of wrecks, repairing some and scrapping others-though any Japanese ships might be refloated and towed to the West Coast for evaluation-imagine the looks on people's faces in SF or San Diego if Zuikaku is towed in with a very large Stars and Stripes flying over the IJN starburst-she was likely scuttled at Pearl to block the harbor. Once Pearl is usable, along with the airfields, then offensive operations to the NW can be contemplated. On the civilian side, shipments of food and medicine for the civilian population, though the islands will still be under martial law, and funds for reconstruction-will be coming in.

    2) Offensive operations to end the threat to Hawaii. JNAF Betty bombers from Midway are hitting Oahu once the islands are liberated-flying at night-"Washing Machine Charlie." AAF P-70 night fighters (converted A-20 Havocs) will arrive, but carrier air strikes will be needed to put the Betties out of business on the ground. The Japanese probably have an intermediate airstrip at French Frigate Shoals (and one OTL was constructed during the war, but a recent Hurricane almost sank the islet which had the airstrip), so taking French Frigate Shoals is first on the agenda (2nd Marine Division while the 1st rebuilds after the fight on Oahu). After that's secured, then you can plan on retaking Midway. That will be 1st Marine Division again, with the Army's 7th ID (OTL fought in the Aleutians in Summer '43-and are likely veterans of Oahu. Once Midway's done, then Wake-2nd Marine Division and maybe the 3rd.

    3) Down Under: MacArthur was probably evacuated to Australia per OTL. The second book mentions U.S. forces in Australia (shipped either via the Panama Canal or the Cape of Good Hope) are hitting Japanese strongholds in New Guinea. Once Wake is retaken, Nimitz can start thinking about a Solomons campaign, while MacArthur takes the fight to New Guinea by retaking Port Morseby and pushing north. The campaigns in New Guinea and the Solomons probably proceed as per OTL, but beginning in 1943 instead of 1942.

    4) The Pacific War is then fought generally as per OTL, but dates are set back a year. Island-hopping begins November '44 in the Gilberts and Marshalls, then Marianas in June-July '45; Leyte October '45 and Luzon beginning Jan '46. Iwo Jima is in Feb '46, and Okinawa in April-June '46. Nuclear strikes on Hiroshima and Nagasaki-and the Soviet invasion of Manchuria and the Kuriles end the war August '46.

    Thoughts?
     
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  15. pattontank12 Better Dead than Red!

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    1) With more men and resources being directed towards the Pacific Theater, against Japan I could actually see them reaching the home Islands slightly ahead of schedule, before the A-bomb was ready. Leading to Operation Downfall actually happening and much of Japan becoming a nation sized version of the battle of Berlin. Leading to a brutal bombing campaign similar to OTL's Bombing of Pyongyang during the Korean war. Things do eventually end after the A-bomb is dropped in 1945 but leading to a much more brutal occupation of Japan post war.

    2) Not sure how feasible it would be but I was thinking that allied forces could manage to retake Hong Kong before the end of the war. Mainly to open up supply routes to the Chinese military and arm them with better weaponry to fight the remaining Japanese forces on the mainland.

    3) Since the Soviets were hit harder here than OTL thanks to a reduced lend lease and a most likely reduced presence in post war Europe compared to OTL they weren't able to send as many troops into Manchuria as OTL. Possibly leading to a North-South China split though with all of Korea coming under communist rule thanks to the United States being tied down fighting/occupying in the Japanese home isles.

    4) Presidential Douglas MacArthur anyone?
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2019
  16. Alterwright "You were never even a player."

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    I think that's a pretty good summary on the course of events that would happen in this universe. The Pacific War still sees the US winning, but the capture of Hawaii is a major set back that extends the war in the Pacific by at least another year.
     
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  17. Alterwright "You were never even a player."

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    Scenes of the Invasion - Combat, Hawaii: 1941-1942

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    ^^^ --- Japanese soldiers rush over the top of a berm as they advance near Waianae Range. Skirmish between US and Japanese forces were intense and bloody, with engagements at close range as the Japanese pressed home their advantage in speed and surprise.

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    ^^^ --- Type 92 heavy machine-gun team in action, laying down suppressing fire for advancing Japanese troops on an American position near Waianae Range. Despite constantly being put on the back-foot, US soldiers made excellent use of the defensive features around the high ground on Oahu, forcing the Japanese to adopt more unconventional tactics to get around their defenses.

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    ^^^ --- A Japanese soldier prepares to throw a grenade toward an nearby American position. Close-range encounters were extremely brutal during the Hawaiian Campaign. Neither side was willing to show mercy.

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    ^^^ --- Japanese troops marching down a coastal road toward Honolulu, with nearby homes burning in the background. As the Japanese advance soldiers scavenged as food a they could find on the island, looting abandoned homes in the hopes of sending little prizes of war back home. American civilians recalled seeing many Japanese soldiers carrying toys, tourist memorabilia, and Coca Cola bottles with them as they marched.

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    ^^^ --- Japanese soldiers prepare a sandbag position on the outskirts of Honolulu. As the Japanese advanced into the city fighting became ferocious as every building was contested by the Americans. Instead of fighting through sweltering jungles, American and Japanese forces would for the first time fight one another urban environment of Honolulu.
     
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  18. Matt Wiser Well-Known Member

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    One thing now about the IJN after the end of the Hawaiian campaign in June-July 1943: carrier construction. Now that they have lost CarDiv 5 (Shokaku and Zuikaku) and half of CarDiv 1 (Akagi), the Naval General Staff will be looking to increase carrier construction. Shinano (the third Yamato) may be too late to convert to a carrier, but Hull 111 (the fourth) will be canceled. Hiyo and Junyo should be in service by June-July '42, along with the older Ryujo, plus Shoho and Zuiho. and Nagumo may be using them for strikes against Australia and another IO raid. Other than Taiho, the only new-build carriers possible will be the Unryu class (the follow-ons to the Hiryu). Unless the decision is made to gut Shinano and turn her into a carrier. Conversions would be Chitose, Chiyoda, and Ryuho. CVEs would still go ahead as per OTL-the need for escort carriers as aircraft ferries and for convoy protection will be obvious-even to the hide-bound admirals in Tokyo-and certainly to Yamamoto.
     
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  19. Alterwright "You were never even a player."

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    Indeed. CVEs were critical in their roles that go beyond just being smaller aircraft carriers.

    So, in regards to the ship Shinano, are you saying there may be a new class of carrier? If the hull of the Shinano is based off what is essentially a Yamato-class hull, which to me is huge, are we looking at just a really big aircraft carrier?
     
  20. Matt Wiser Well-Known Member

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    She was the biggest carrier of the war, and is still the largest ship ever sunk by a submarine. The IJN may finish her as a carrier, but-if they want more hulls, the Unryus would be the way to go.
     
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