Nagumo puts his country first

There has been several posts on Midway recently which has got me thinking could Nagumo have saved Hiryū?

POD: At 11:15 Nagumo having transferred his flag from his burning flagship Akagi to the Cruiser Nagara - realising that he is holding a very poor hand - places Moral courage above personal courage and orders the Hiryū and the escorting Crusiers and Battleships to abandon the 3 burning Carriers and leave the battle area, leaving a few DD's behind to recover the crews and scuttle the ships

Could Hiryū, being instead of spending several hours getting closer to the positions of the suspected US Carriers by early afternoon in fact having moved North West at max speed and is instead nearly 100 NM's further away by the time of her OTL fate of being Dick Best 2nd carrier kill of the day, survive to fight another day?

Does this also reprieve Yorktown as she is not the target of a 2nd strike?

Despite not killing off Yorktown (potentially) is this result 'better' for the Japanese - despite being 3 : 0.5 to the Americans?
 
Interesting. I think Hiryu dies at the Eastern Solomons and Fletcher does much better as he now has that goddamned fool, Yamaguchi, as his opposite instead of The Ditherer, cause the only way Nagumo does the right thing at Midway is if he commits seppuku immediately afterward.

All aggression 24/7 was the IJN way, until the chickenitis hit them and then they ran for their lives. Odd piece of Pacific War psychology that the USN learned to exploit.
 
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Geon

Donor
There has been several posts on Midway recently which has got me thinking could Nagumo have saved Hiryū?

POD: At 11:15 Nagumo having transferred his flag from his burning flagship Akagi to the Cruiser Nagara - realising that he is holding a very poor hand - places Moral courage above personal courage and orders the Hiryū and the escorting Crusiers and Battleships to abandon the 3 burning Carriers and leave the battle area, leaving a few DD's behind to recover the crews and scuttle the ships

Could Hiryū, being instead of spending several hours getting closer to the positions of the suspected US Carriers by early afternoon in fact having moved North West at max speed and is instead nearly 100 NM's further away by the time of her OTL fate of being Dick Best 2nd carrier kill of the day, survive to fight another day?

Does this also reprieve Yorktown as she is not the target of a 2nd strike?

Despite not killing off Yorktown (potentially) is this result 'better' for the Japanese - despite being 3 : 0.5 to the Americans?

I agree with @McPherson . Assuming Hiryu survives to fight another day likely she goes down later at one of the sea battles of Guadalcanal. It also means the USN has one more carrier still available to her.
 
Yorktown will be out of action for some time, but will be very handy to have around later. The quick and dirty repairs after Coral Sea will have to be removed, at least in part, before the real repairs can be done.
One more carrier gives the USA more options--just knowing that Yorktown will be back in three months adds to the options.
Yorktown would look great at Battleship Cove alongside Massachusetts! (Or perhaps Patriot's Point still has a USS Yorktown, but just an older one.)
 
Yorktown will be out of action for some time, but will be very handy to have around later. The quick and dirty repairs after Coral Sea will have to be removed, at least in part, before the real repairs can be done.
One more carrier gives the USA more options--just knowing that Yorktown will be back in three months adds to the options.
Yorktown would look great at Battleship Cove alongside Massachusetts! (Or perhaps Patriot's Point still has a USS Yorktown, but just an older one.)

Personally I’d prefer the Big E but any Yorktown class surviving as a museum and war memorial would be nice.
 
Personally I’d prefer the Big E but any Yorktown class surviving as a museum and war memorial would be nice.
The Hiryu probably escapes. Yorktown survives, plus 1 Japanese cruiser survives.

The Japanese could probably have retired after the first or second Yorktown strikes as well, even moving west an hour early might have increased escape attempt, and at least saved a cruiser.
 

Driftless

Donor
IF Yorktown survives Midway (along with Hiryu), we're assuming that it goes in for major repairs? So, how long might that run? Also, does that mean the Wasp gets pulled into the Pacific fight in the interim?
 

Sargon

Donor
Monthly Donor
I agree. She probably doesn't make it much past Guadalcanal. I mean, she might get lucky and last longer, that's not impossible, but bearing in mind Yorktown is very likely going to be back, that's another deck for the US too to add to the equation. And a better one at that.


Sargon
 
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IF Yorktown survives Midway (along with Hiryu), we're assuming that it goes in for major repairs? So, how long might that run? Also, does that mean the Wasp gets pulled into the Pacific fight in the interim?
According to the DANSF, three months repair was what was anticipated after Coral Sea.
had not achieved her part in the victory without cost, but had suffered enough damage to cause experts to estimate that at least three months in a yard would be required to put her back in fighting trim. Unfortunately, there was little time for repairs, because Allied intelligence, most notably the cryptographic unit at Pearl Harbor, had gained enough information from decoded Japanese naval messages to estimate that the Japanese were on the threshold of a major operation aimed at the northwestern tip of the Hawaiian chain, two islets in a low coral atoll known as Midway.
Would the operations off of Midway do more damage that would need more attention? I have no idea, but she was run hard at Midway.
 
According to the DANSF, three months repair was what was anticipated after Coral Sea.

Would the operations off of Midway do more damage that would need more attention? I have no idea, but she was run hard at Midway.
If hammann had not been so close sending shockwaves could yorktown have survived?
 
If the Yorktown did survive the Battle of Midway, maybe having another carrier might save the Hornet at Santa Cruz.
 
IF Yorktown survives Midway (along with Hiryu), we're assuming that it goes in for major repairs? So, how long might that run? Also, does that mean the Wasp gets pulled into the Pacific fight in the interim?

Yorktown took 3 direct 450 kg bombs in the first attack - the 2nd attack is not happening here as Hiryu has buggered off saving what she can and by 16:00 hrs Yorktown is capable of steaming at up to 20 knots

Needless to say she is in for a lot of yard time - possibly with a major refit thrown in for good measure.

She had suffered damage to her superheater boilers at Coral (which I am not sure if this was fully repaired?) and the 3 bombs hits at Midway had damaged the uptakes for 3 boiler rooms and damaged two of the boilers.

Not sure if anything changes in regards to Wasp as in terms of Carrier availability there is the same numbers as OTL for the balance of 1942 (IJN are +1 though) - but gives the US +1 Deck in 1943 (at one point they were down to just Saratoga).

Perhaps USS Robin does not join her as OTL.....or maybe Robin or a Sister joins earlier?
 
Yorktown will be out of action for some time, but will be very handy to have around later. The quick and dirty repairs after Coral Sea will have to be removed, at least in part, before the real repairs can be done.
One more carrier gives the USA more options--just knowing that Yorktown will be back in three months adds to the options.
Yorktown would look great at Battleship Cove alongside Massachusetts! (Or perhaps Patriot's Point still has a USS Yorktown, but just an older one.)
Since Enterprise did not work as a museum, i do not see Yorktown as such
 
Let's do this the easy way and assume that as soon as Nagumo's three flight decks get whacked on the morning of 4 June, they turn west and do their very best impression of Brave Sir Robin. So this means both the USN and the IJN are up a flight deck. However, with Saratoga on her way from the west coast and Wasp departing Norfolk for the Pacific, I am betting Nimitz will use the opportunity to send Yorktown to Bremerton where she will not only have were wounds from Coral Sea repaired, she will also get a full scale refit like Saratoga got earlier that year and Enterprise got in 1943 OTL. That means she is in drydock for three or four months. Even if it is three months, I am not sure she make it to Santa Cruz in time given the need to take on an air group and collect escorts and actually get down there.

An extra Japanese flight deck could make things harder on the Allies from August to October but assuming things go similar to OTL, the US could be looking at two undamaged flight decks in late November (Saratoga and Yorktown) meaning Enterprise can leave the area for her refit about six months earlier than OTL. That can create some pretty butterflies for the later half of 1943, particularly later in the year as it likely means a heavier strike against Rabaul in November.
 
Let's do this the easy way and assume that as soon as Nagumo's three flight decks get whacked on the morning of 4 June, they turn west and do their very best impression of Brave Sir Robin. So this means both the USN and the IJN are up a flight deck. However, with Saratoga on her way from the west coast and Wasp departing Norfolk for the Pacific, I am betting Nimitz will use the opportunity to send Yorktown to Bremerton where she will not only have were wounds from Coral Sea repaired, she will also get a full scale refit like Saratoga got earlier that year and Enterprise got in 1943 OTL. That means she is in drydock for three or four months. Even if it is three months, I am not sure she make it to Santa Cruz in time given the need to take on an air group and collect escorts and actually get down there.

An extra Japanese flight deck could make things harder on the Allies from August to October but assuming things go similar to OTL, the US could be looking at two undamaged flight decks in late November (Saratoga and Yorktown) meaning Enterprise can leave the area for her refit about six months earlier than OTL. That can create some pretty butterflies for the later half of 1943, particularly later in the year as it likely means a heavier strike against Rabaul in November.

I still would have liked Fletcher to handle Santa Cruz, wounds and King be damned. Hornet might have made it through as well as Wasp.
 
She had suffered damage to her superheater boilers at Coral (which I am not sure if this was fully repaired?) and the 3 bombs hits at Midway had damaged the uptakes for 3 boiler rooms and damaged two of the boilers.

Yorktown had a boiler room out of action from Coral Sea. She went to Midway as a 27 knot carrier. The Yorktowns had three boiler room, all adjacent and forward of the engine rooms. It was seen as a weakness corrected in the Essex class.

Perhaps USS Robin does not join her as OTL.....or maybe Robin or a Sister joins earlier?

"Robin" was a call-sign for Victorious, just like New Jersey was "Werewolf" or Indianapolis was "Superman" or Bennington was "Circus".

I am betting Nimitz will use the opportunity to send Yorktown to Bremerton where she will not only have were wounds from Coral Sea repaired, she will also get a full scale refit like Saratoga got earlier that year and Enterprise got in 1943 OTL. That means she is in drydock for three or four months. Even if it is three months, I am not sure she make it to Santa Cruz in time given the need to take on an air group and collect escorts and actually get down there.

An extra Japanese flight deck could make things harder on the Allies from August to October but assuming things go similar to OTL, the US could be looking at two undamaged flight decks in late November (Saratoga and Yorktown) meaning Enterprise can leave the area for her refit about six months earlier than OTL. That can create some pretty butterflies for the later half of 1943, particularly later in the year as it likely means a heavier strike against Rabaul in November.

She's definitely not making Eastern Solomons at the end of August, and would have to rush to make Santa Cruz at the end of October. I think you're right, she'll let the damaged Enterprise go home for repair and modernization early. Having Yorktown with Saratoga and when the four Sangamons (CarDiv 22) come west means a lot of air-power in the South Pacific. As an aside, the Sangamons were the only escort carriers to operate SBD Dauntless dive bombers as part of their squadrons. Second Guadalcanal essentially ended the Guadalcanal campaign, but having another carrier for the Solomons campaign might mean Air Group 28 doesn't get stripped from the escort carriers and sent to Henderson. Even if that still happens, I agree the fast carriers will be used against Rabaul.

Regards all,
 
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One interesting thought on this - part of the reason HMS Victorious was sent to the South Pacific is because the Royal Navy was keen to learn from the US Navy, particularly in the area of sustaining ships at sea for long periods of time (at one point during the deployment Victorious spent 28 straight days at sea, the longest for a RN carrier up to that point) so a USN in a better position does not necessarily mean that deployment doesn't happen. That means you could see a situation in the summer of 1943 where the Allies have Saratoga, Yorktown, and Victorious in SOPAC and maybe even Enterprise depending on her refit schedule and whether or not Nimitz decides to keep her at PH for the buildup going on there. That could lead to a more aggressive posture by the Allies.
 
One interesting thought on this - part of the reason HMS Victorious was sent to the South Pacific is because the Royal Navy was keen to learn from the US Navy, particularly in the area of sustaining ships at sea for long periods of time (at one point during the deployment Victorious spent 28 straight days at sea, the longest for a RN carrier up to that point)

I wonder if that came through officers serving with the RAN? IIRC, there were complaints from Australia when she was operating with Nashville that the latter needed replenishment far less frequently, and among other things, had a lot more refrigeration to keep the crew in fresh victuals longer...

Regards,
 
Japanese planes had longer range at this point; Nagumo could have waited until the attack which took out Yorktown was launched and then had Hiryu flee. And that might still have been enough to save Hiryu. A lot of the things Nagumo is blamed for were unavoidable or defensible, but having Hiryu continue to close range after the strike was launched was inexcusable.
 
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