Keynes' Cruisers Volume 2

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: After 1900' started by fester, Sep 13, 2018.

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  1. fester Well-Known Member

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    Most of the division firepower slice plus some corps assets is supporting this regiment. It only has 6 obsolete field guns and a dozen man portable mortars.

    Reminder an otl 1944 US infantry regiment share of divisional artillery is 12 105mm+ 4 155mm. Organic firepower was 18 81mm +27 60mm mortars and 9 heavy antitank guns.

    In ttl, instead of a Chinese unit being 1l3rd of a Japanese unit of the same echelon, it may be 35-40% on average.
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2019
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  2. Draconis Emperor of the North Pole.

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    The better supplied and more potent Chinese army in this ATL is constraining Japanese operations in occupied China.
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2019
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  3. Driftless Geezer

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    ^^^ IF the Chinese are challenging the Japanese more than OTL; does that also constrain the Japanese ability to borrow fighting resources for use elsewhere?

    Basically, the Japanese are getting more pressure from three sides (at an earlier date)than historically
     
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  4. Curtain Jerker Well-Known Member

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    Wonder if the more competent KMT is enough to tip the scales ITTL's Chinese Civil War.
     
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  5. fester Well-Known Member

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    Pay attention to Ichi-go
     
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  6. Threadmarks: Story 2127

    fester Well-Known Member

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    Rhez, Russia, July 14, 1943



    The general drank his tea. Silence had not been heard in over a week, but the pre-dawn minutes were as quiet as the battleground had been since the first German divisions had attacked. They had penetrated the first and then the second belt. Five divisions of Armenians, Russians and Khazaks had been effectively shattered. Trucks full of broken men had only stopped streaming the rear when the trucks that were returning from a run to the hospitals were heading west with more shells for the entrenched guns.

    But the third defensive belt held. His men held. Bastions had poured heavy and accurate anti-tank fire into the flanks of the panzers. Ravelins had protected machine gunners who had forced landsers to the ground and into deliberate, slow attacks. Bunkers shielded his flying columns from dive bombers and artillery in between fanatical counter-attacks. His artillery, and the artillery of the Front’s artillery division had fired hundreds of shells per gun per day to break up the German attacks.

    The ground in front of his command post was nearly impossible for an advance. Tanks would throw tracks within the first five kilometers. Infantry men would be scrambling through blood soaked mud pits in the first five hundred meters. It would not matter. Seventeen kilometers south of his division, a tank corps was getting ready to launch an assault into the flank of the German attack. An understrength German infantry regiment was the corps flank guard and then the T-34s and self propelled artillery could find maneuvering and operational space. The tankers would buy relief before the front line German formations could attack.


    Before they could attack, attention needed to be drawn. The general looked at his watch. Twelve more seconds, and then every working gun in his division and the divisions adjacent to him began to fire.
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2019
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  7. NHBL Long Time Member, CMII

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    The Russian Front--a meatgrinder.
     
  8. Dathi THorfinnsson Daði Þorfinnsson

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    Impassable, I believe is what you likely meant.
     
  9. fester Well-Known Member

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    I meant both words
     
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  10. Threadmarks: Story 2128

    fester Well-Known Member

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    Alexandria, Egypt July 15, 1943



    Major Jaroschek greeted the replacement pilots with a strong handshake and a curt nod. Fighter squadrons went through second lieutenants like artillery battalions used shells. Five carriers were in the harbor. USS Ranger and Wasp had arrived that morning.

    The three British fleet carriers had been training in the Eastern Mediterranean for weeks. They would typically spend a few days at sea working on fighter direction tactics and pre-dawn strikes. Last week they were escorted by HMS Hood and HMS Warspite for a raid against German airfields near Athens where they suffered minimal losses.

    A few hundred feet aft of the Marine fighter squadron’s ready room, hundreds of sailors were getting ready to restock the ship’s magazines and larders. The hot sun would beat down on them, but they could not delay the work until nightfall as the captain and the admiral had plans for the task force to go back to sea by late tomorrow morning where they would be covering a troop convoy.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2019
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    fester Well-Known Member

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    Perth, Australia, July 16, 1943



    Dozens of dolphins were frolicking in the wake of the heavily loaded assault ship. Sergeant Donahue waved at them and laughed at the playfulness. He had enjoyed watching the aquatic mammals during his recovery and since he had rejoined his original regiment, not the Illinois regiment that he had fought and bled with in Timor as a replacement but the regiment he had joined in 1939, he found a moment of displacement from the hub-bub of preparing replacements for combat whenever he had a chance to take a walk along the Swan River’s banks. His dolphins had been with him every time he read a letter from his wife, she dotted it with perfume and he was back in Lowell for a moment even as she had moved to Boston.


    His platoon was heavy on replacements. His platoon leader was a ninety day wonder. Patrick had a five dollar bet with one of his compatriots, a fellow veteran over in Hotel Company as to whether or not one or both of their lieutenants would be alive in two days of combat. He had the under. Two of the squad leaders and three corporals had been in the thickest of fighting on Timor and another dozen privates had fought in both the jungle and in the small urban hellhole at the end. Of these eighteen men, only two did not have at least one Purple Heart. Most had at least two. The rest of the platoon were well trained, by stateside standards at least, well equipped, and well fed.


    He and the other veterans had six months after the reconquest of Timor to whip the replacements into shape. They had marched, they had shot, they had crawled, they had dug, they had carried their comrades on their back under simulated fire five days a week for the four months. Company and then battalion sized exercises were carried out. He thought that most of his platoon would have a chance for at least the first ten minutes of combat. After that, it would be a crap-shoot.


    He flicked his cigarette over the side, and put on his platoon sergeant face as he heard at least three privates slacking off. The assault ship cleared the coastal defenses and the anti-submarine boom just after the three privates had finished their "motivational" push-ups.
     
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    fester Well-Known Member

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    Pearl Harbor, July 17, 1943



    Three aircraft carriers, seven cruisers, twenty destroyers, seven patrol boats, four tankers and twenty seven other ships slowly made their way past the hospital and then into the narrow shipping channel. Four hours later, the three Essex class carriers turned out of the wind before joining all the cruisers and most of the destroyers. The twenty seven warships turned to the south by southwest and synchronized their speed to eighteen knots. Tankers had already left Samoa days ago to rendezvous with the new carrier striking group near Naura. Black oil would be sent over the side before the air wings entered combat for the first time with raids against against Rabaul and Bouganville. After that, another refueling opportunity would be taken before the task force joined the 3rd Fleet in the East Indies.

    Three destroyers, all of the gunboats and the twenty one non-combatant ships were taking the scenic route to Singapore. A few ships would be detached to Samoa. Two old four-stackers were to be relieved by gunboats. The battered workhorses were due to return to California for a refit. Port Moresby would welcome half a dozen cargo ships but most of the cargo ships and all of the fleet auxiliaries would eventually arrive at Batavia or Singapore.
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2019
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    fester Well-Known Member

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    Sunda Strait, July 17, 1943


    USS Enterprise and three destroyers left the crowded chokepoint. During her stay in Singapore, the damaged carrier had temporary repairs to the torpedo damage on her port side. Now she was heading to the Puget Sound for both repairs and a comprehensive refit. Half her fighter squadron and a single squadron of Dauntlesses were aboard. The fighters were flown by men who had seen some of the most combat out of all the naval aviators in the world who were still alive. They would be the backbone of another three or four replacement squadrons. The dive bombers would stay at Pearl Harbor as part of the Pacific Fleet replacement pool. The rest of the air group had been bedded down in Johor province to serve as replacement aircraft and crews for the five American fleet carriers anchored underneath the British fortress guns.
     
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    fester Well-Known Member

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    Bremerton, Washington July 17, 1943


    Arc welders were busy. New anti-aircraft batteries were being installed. Old guns had been tossed over the side during the struggle to keep the old converted battlecruiser afloat after the Battle of Makassar. She had been in the dry dock for four months now. Another month of three shifts, around the clock, six day a week work was scheduled before she could go back out to sea and bring her crew back up to snuff. Only a third of the men who had gone to sea the day before the Pacific Trafalgar were still aboard. A third had either been committed to the deep or to the naval hospital system, and a third had been transferred off the ship to crew the crescendo of new construction emerging from yards. New men, some long service men, but mostly draftees who had been in uniform for less than a year now needed to be forged into a fine blade of the most flexible steel. A brand new air group was almost ready to come aboard. Three squadrons of brand new Grummans and a single very large squadron of Curtises had been built from scratch over the past fifteen months. In another three months, they would be ready with their ship to bring their war to Japan.
     
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  15. Driftless Geezer

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    A whole lot of reloading in progress there.
     
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    fester Well-Known Member

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    Indian Ocean, July 18, 1943



    HMS Cairo led the small convoy. The only other escort was HMIS Indus, a sloop that had fought off of Burma in 1942 and since then had only been active in the deep rear. USS Pecos and Trinity made up the first column, while a Norwegian tanker led the second column whose rear ship was a Royal Fleet Auxiliary. The journey from Abadan had been uneventful and boring, which while it was not the experience that the eighteen year olds wanted, it was what the skippers and convoy commander hoped for. A flag went up to signal a random zig of twelve degrees.


    The convoy continued into the rising sun.
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2019
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  17. SsgtC Ready to Call it a Day

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    Should be italicized

    This is fucking ominous
     
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  18. mudhead Little-Known Member

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    I made it 30 - 3 CVs, 7 CA/CL, 20 DDs.
     
  19. Draconis Emperor of the North Pole.

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    The "Pacific Trafalgar" referring to the ATL Battle of Makassar Strait. Nice turn of phrase.
     
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  20. Look More Closely Later Gone fishing means 'responses unlikely' Gone Fishin'

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    Useful having carrier repair facilities so relatively close to the action, presumably.
     
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