Partly that but with the limits of the treaties combined with the extent of British global commitments the Royal Navy was probably always going to have local numerical inferiority as every likely opponent could concentrate their forces while Britain couldn't. Plus of course the RN had to win without taking too much damage, even if they won a slugging match against say the Italians it would leave them weak trying to cover Japan and Germany. Night fighting against an opponent that couldn't do that offered a chance to get in some crushing wins that preserved the fleet.Interesting take. I had always assumed that the emphasis on night fighting was largely driven by assessments of the relative weakness of the RN in that area in WW1, and a desire not to be caught by such a deficiency again.
The worst., most dangerous enemy the RN has ever faced was the Exchequer.Interesting take. I had always assumed that the emphasis on night fighting was largely driven by assessments of the relative weakness of the RN in that area in WW1, and a desire not to be caught by such a deficiency again.
Commander Rollo Appleyard's work was declared obsolete in 1939 and destroyed.
Valuable experience of 1914–18 was disregarded in other respects as concerns convoy. Until 1943, when Professor P. M. S. Blackett produced some interesting statistics about ocean convoys and changed the staff view on convoy escort, it was Admiralty gospel that ‘the larger the convoy the greater the risk’. Had the convoy statistics of 1917–18 been analysed after the war, and the printed results of the mathematical research on comparative escort strength by an acting commander, RNVR (Rollo Appleyard) early in 1918 been studied, the Admiralty would have been aware of ‘the law of convoy size’: ‘The escort strength requires to be measured, not in terms of the number of vessels in convoy, but in terms of the total area comprised within the boundary formed by lines connecting all outer vessels.’ Appleyard went on to prove mathematically that the ratio of the torpedo attack area around the convoy perimeter to the number of escorts directly watching it is ‘a more correct numerical measure of the escort strength of a convoy than is the ratio of the number of ships in convoy to the number of close escorts’. It is sad that operational research was not understood in the interwar years; it needed someone of the standing of Blackett to show what could be done in this field.There is substance in Lieutenant-Commander D. W. Waters’s assertion that ‘virtually every surface and air anti-submarine lesson of the first submarine war had to be, and ultimately was, re-learnt i…weaponsandwarfare.com
Yeah, it seems pretty clear that neither of the 2 real naval great powers, the UK and US, were not especially invested in fighting each other. Each have fairly glaring holes in their doctrines and equipment regarding the other (fast capital ships lacking in the USN and American BB gunfire significantly outranging the RN's, the US lacking a night fighting doctrine and the RN carriers being designed not really fighting in blue water, etc) .Now maybe that 1 extra round per gun magically made long range fighting a 'tactical option'. But when you consider the the Nagatos only had 90 rounds per gun and the Littorios scrapped by on 74 , and those were the ships the RN would actually be shooting at, then surely no-one else had the option of a long range fight either? The alternative is that Moretz is just making things up to justify a conclusion he had already reached, which seems a lot more likely.
Only the USN could truly overmatch the RN, if desired, but in most scenarios there is little reason to compare the USN and the RN, the USN is really built to secure the coasts and then to defeat Japan. Without overt provocation one should suspect whether the USN has a future of even parity with the RN, longer term if the USA withdraws from the Philippines the rationale for the Pacific Fleet dwindles.I would say any of the two together at a time.
But of course, they faced all three at the same time.
Also, the concept of KM based on the French Atlantic coast would have been moon-beam thinking for much of the 30s. With the Maginot Line, and access to the Atlantic through the Channel/North Sea choke points, meant that ASW planning concentrated on 'more realistic' concepts.Also, a major reason that asdic wasn't the cure was that uboats often operated on the surface by night (once they had sufficient numbers and until radar made this too dangerous). This probably wouldn't have been revealed by more extensive exercises before the war, it requires both a conceptual leap (they are submarines, why would they operate on the surface near surface warships) and large numbers of submarines and merchant ships for the advantages to be clear. Then, even if it was realized it's not clear what the appropriate response is until better radar is available
This is not to say that British ASW equipment and training was anywhere near as good as it could have been at the outbreak of war