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JAPANESE DRIVE INTO JAVA FROM 3 BEACHHEADS; ALLIES BLAST 26 SHIPS, BUT OWN LOSS IS HEAVY (3/2/42)
Microfilm-New York Times archives, Monterey Public Library | 3/2/42

Posted on 03/02/2012 4:25:29 AM PST by Homer_J_Simpson

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TOPICS: History
KEYWORDS: asiaticfleet; bataan; macarthur; milhist; realtime; worldwarii
Free Republic University, Department of History presents World War II Plus 70 Years: Seminar and Discussion Forum
First session: September 1, 2009. Last date to add: September 2, 2015.
Reading assignment: New York Times articles delivered daily to students on the 70th anniversary of original publication date. (Previously posted articles can be found by searching on keyword “realtime” Or view Homer’s posting history .)
To add this class to or drop it from your schedule notify Admissions and Records (Attn: Homer_J_Simpson) by freepmail. Those on the Realtime +/- 70 Years ping list are automatically enrolled. Course description, prerequisites and tuition information is available at the bottom of Homer’s profile. Also visit our general discussion thread
1 posted on 03/02/2012 4:25:35 AM PST by Homer_J_Simpson
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To: Homer_J_Simpson
Selections from West Point Atlas for the Second World War
The Far East and the Pacific, 1941 – Operations of the Japanese First Air Fleet, 7 December 1941-12 March 1942
The Far East and the Pacific, 1941 – American Carrier Operations, 7 December 1941-18 April 1942
Micronesia, Melanesia and New Guinea: Japanese Centrifugal Offensive-Japanese Fourth Fleet and South Seas Detachment Operations, December 1941-April 1942
Luzon, P.I., 1941: Centrifugal Offensive, 10 December 1941-6 May 1942-Fourteenth Army Operations on Luzon
Netherlands East Indies, 1941: Japanese Centrifugal Offensive, December 1941-April 1942, Sixteenth Army and Southern Force (Navy) Operations
Southern Asia, 1941: Japanese Centrifugal Offensive (and Continued Operations), January-May 1942
Eastern Europe, 1941: Soviet Winter Offensive – Operations, 6 December 1941-7 May 1942
North Africa, 1940: Rommel’s Second Offensive, 21 January-7 July 1942
2 posted on 03/02/2012 4:26:46 AM PST by Homer_J_Simpson ("Every nation has the government that it deserves." - Joseph de Maistre (1753-1821))
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To: r9etb; PzLdr; dfwgator; Paisan; From many - one.; rockinqsranch; 2banana; henkster; meandog; ...
Not one author named. That hasn’t happened for a long time.

Invaders Advance – 2
3 Battles at Sea – 3-4
Luzon Defenders Win Local Victory – 4-5
Cry in Gaelic Rallied Scots to Victory in Raid on Nazis – 5
Moonlight Ignores Yonkers Blackout – 6
The Texts of the Day’s Communiques on Fighting in Various Zones – 7-8

3 posted on 03/02/2012 4:28:34 AM PST by Homer_J_Simpson ("Every nation has the government that it deserves." - Joseph de Maistre (1753-1821))
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To: Homer_J_Simpson

http://www.onwar.com/chrono/1942/mar42/f02mar42.htm

Japanese advance in Philippines
Monday, March 2, 1942 www.onwar.com

Japanese General Homma arrives in the PhilippinesIn the Philippines... Japanese forces land on Mindanao. Japanese warships bombard targets on Mindanao, Ceo and Negros Islands.

In Burma... the Japanese troops cross the Sittang River in force.

In the East Indies... Batavia on Java falls to Japanese Troops


4 posted on 03/02/2012 4:31:05 AM PST by Homer_J_Simpson ("Every nation has the government that it deserves." - Joseph de Maistre (1753-1821))
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To: Homer_J_Simpson

http://homepage.ntlworld.com/andrew.etherington/frame.htm

March 2nd, 1942

UNITED KINGDOM: The second U.S. Army increment (8,555 personnel) of the MAGNET Force, the movement of the first U.S. forces to Northern Ireland, arrives in Belfast in a 21-ship convoy plus escorts which sailed from Brooklyn, New York on 19 February. Among the arriving troops is the 34th Infantry Division headquarters and parts of the 133d and 168th Infantry. American strength in Northern Ireland on this date is reported as 10,433 (including 534 officers, 70 nurses, and 2 warrant officers). (Jack McKillop)
Destroyer ORP Orkan (ex-HMS Myrmidion) launched.

Escort carrier HMS Avenger commissioned. (Dave Shirlaw)

NETHERLANDS: Four RAF Bomber Command Bostons attacked ships off Den Helder without loss. (Jack McKillop)

GERMANY: U-185, U-520 launched. (Dave Shirlaw)

HUNGARY: The government breaks diplomatic relations with Brazil. (Jack McKillop)

U.S.S.R.: Minsk: The Germans shoot dead 5,000 Jews.

TURKEY: The government closes the Dardanelles to all ships without Turkish captains. (Jack McKillop)

BURMA: The Japanese continue to infiltrate westward between the Burmese 1st and Indian 17th Divisions and are swinging southwest on Rangoon, bypassing Pegu. (Jack McKillop)

NETHERLANDS EAST INDIES: The Japanese gain further ground in Java, where the Dutch are continuing to resist; the Japanese claim the capture of Batavia, from which Dutch Government has been forced to move to Bandoeng. Actually, a hastily organized Australian-Dutch-American-British infantry unit commanded by Australian Brigadier Arthur Blackburn, General Officer Commanding Australian Imperial Force Java, stops the Japanese 16th Army’s advance on Batavia, the island’s capital. (Jack McKillop)
Many ships are scuttled off Java to prevent them from failing into enemy hands but the Japanese Main Body, Southern Force overtakes fleeing Allied ships southwest of Java; heavy cruiser HIJMS Maya and destroyers HIJMS Arashi and Nowaki sink British destroyer HMS Stronghold; heavy cruisers HIJMS Atago and Takao attack what they initially identify as a “Marblehead-class” cruiser and sink her with gunfire; their quarry is actually destroyer USS Pillsbury (DD-227), which is lost with all hands in the Indian Ocean about 270 miles (435 kilometres) south-southeast of Christmas Island. (Jack McKillop)
In Surabaja, three ships are scuttled in drydock, the damaged Dutch destroyers HNMS Witte de With and Banckert and the American destroyer USS Stewart (DD-224). Stewart had entered the floating drydock on 22 February, however, she was inadequately supported in the dock, and, as the dock rose, the ship fell off the keel blocks onto her side in 12 feet (3,7 meters) of water bending her propeller shafts and causing further hull damage. With the port under enemy air attack and in danger of falling to the enemy, the ship could not be repaired and
demolition charges were set off within the ship, a Japanese bomb hit amidships further damaging her; and, before the port was evacuated on 2 March, the drydock containing her was scuttled. Her name was struck from the Navy list on 25 March 1942 and her name was soon assigned to a new destroyer escort, DE-238. Later in the war, U.S. pilots began reporting an American warship operating far within enemy waters. The ship had a Japanese bunked funnel but the lines for her four-piper hull were unmistakable. After almost a year under water, Stewart had been raised by the Japanese in February 1943 and commissioned by them on 20 September 1943 as Patrol Boat No. 102. She was armed with two 3-inch (7,62 centimeter) guns and operated with the Japanese Southwest Area Fleet on escort duty until arriving at Kure, Japan, for repairs in November 1944. There her antiaircraft battery was augmented and she was given a light tripod foremast. She then sailed for the Southwest Pacific, but the American reconquest of the Philippines blocked her way. On 28 April 1945, still under control of the Southwest Area Fleet, she was bombed and damaged by USAAF aircraft at Mokpo, Korea. She was transferred on 30 April to the control of the Kure Navy District; and, in August 1945, was found by American occupation forces laid up in Hiro Bay near Kure. In an emotional ceremony on 29 October 1945, the old ship was recommissioned as simply DD-224 in theUSNat Kure. On the trip home, her engines gave out near Guam, and she arrived at San Francisco in early March 1946 at the end of a tow line. DD-224 was struck from the Navy list on 17 April 1946, decommissioned on 23 May 1946, and sunk a day later off San Francisco, California, as a target for aircraft.
At Jogjakarta Airdrome, the last airbase on Java still occupied by the Allies, 260 officers and enlisted men are crammed aboard five USAAF B-17 Flying Fortresses and three LB-30 Liberators for the final flight to Broome, Western Australia. (James Paterson and Jack McKillop)

LOMBOK STRAIT: Submarine USS Sailfish (SS-192) torpedoes and sinks Japanese aircraft transport HIJMS Kamogawa Maru about 10 miles (16 kilometres) off the northeast coast of Bali. (Jack McKillop)

COMMONWEALTH OF THE PHILIPPINES: Four P-40s based on Bataan attack Japanese ships in Subic Bay, Luzon, with 500-pound (227 kilogram) bombs sinking an auxiliary submarine chaser. One P-40 is shot down and the other three are destroyed in crash landings. (Jack McKillop)
The rations of the U. S.-Filipino army on Bataan are reduced again, this time to one-quarter of the normal daily food allowance. The trapped troops supplement their diet with horse and water buffalo meat and even lizards. Disease is taking a heavy toll on the 95,000 men on Bataan and Corregidor — especially malaria, malnutrition and diarrhea. Many men are so weak they can hardly crawl to their foxholes and lift their rifles. (Jack McKillop)
Elsewhere in the Philippines, Japanese warships bombard Cebu and Negros Islands in the central archipelago and Japanese troops land at Zamboanga on Mindanao Island. (Jack McKillop)

NEW GUINEA: The Japanese Navy begins heavy air strikes against Allied bases in preparation for invasion of the Huon Gulf area. (Jack McKillop)

AUSTRALIA: The government declares war on Thailand. (Jack McKillop)

Minesweeper HMAS Glenelg laid down. (Dave Shirlaw)

U.S.A.: Admiral Ernest J. King, Commander in Chief United States Fleet, proposes that 353 square mile (914 square kilometer) Efate Island in the central New Hebrides Islands be established as a place “from which a step-by-step advance could be made through the New Hebrides, Solomons, and Bismarcks.” (Jack McKillop)
Regularly scheduled operations by the U.S. Naval Air Transport Service are inaugurated with an R4D Skytrain flight from NAS Norfolk, Virginia, to NRAB Squantum, Massachusetts. (Jack McKillop)

The Western defence Command issues a proclamation which designates the western halves of California, Oregon, and Washington, and the southern third of Arizona as a military area and states that all persons of Japanese descent are to be removed from this area. Through the month of March 1942, people affected by this proclamation are allowed to move to new homes of their own choosing outside the military area, and about 8,000 people in fact move outside the military area during the month. (Scott Peterson) More...
Destroyer USS Aulick launched.

Destroyer USS McKee laid down.

Submarine USS Kingfish launched. (Dave Shirlaw)

ATLANTIC OCEAN:

At 2047, the unescorted Gunny was torpedoed by U-126 about 400 miles south of Bermuda and sank within one minute. The ship had been missed at 1215 by a first torpedo. 13 survivors climbed on a raft, but had no food and water. The injured chief engineer died on the fourth day. On 9 March, Swedish MS Temnaren picked up the remaining survivors. (Dave Shirlaw)


5 posted on 03/02/2012 4:32:27 AM PST by Homer_J_Simpson ("Every nation has the government that it deserves." - Joseph de Maistre (1753-1821))
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To: Homer_J_Simpson

The 3 days Java Sea battles were more of a disaster for the Allies than Pearl Harbor. The true nature of just how bad it was, was kept hidden until much later in the war.

5,000 Sailors killed, a dozen plus ships sunk, including an Aircraft Carrier/Seaplane Tender (U.S.S. Langley) and several cruisers, Java and it’s oil lost, and India, Australia laid bare to attack, with literally nothing left in theater to stop the Japanese.

The propaganda of the time downplayed the importance of the losses, when in fact, the exact opposite was true.


6 posted on 03/02/2012 5:32:14 AM PST by tcrlaf (Election 2012: THE RAPTURE OF THE DEMOCRATS)
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To: Homer_J_Simpson

Filipino’s want to send aid to Kalipornia. lol.


7 posted on 03/02/2012 6:39:15 AM PST by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Pursue Happiness)
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To: tcrlaf

The entire Allied campaign in South East Asia from December 8th through the fall of Burma was a massive disaster from beginning to end.

-Poor land commanders in the Philippines and Malaya.

-Lack of coordination between the services. (Both US and Commonwealth)

-Lack of coordination between the ABDA powers

-Inadequate Air Forces and poor use of them.

-Naval Forces thrown away piecemeal

The Japanese plan should not have worked, but outside of the Philippines it worked perfectly. They used their few advantages (morale, initiative, and air power) to hammer the Allies repeatedly and keep them off balance. Despite the fact that the Japanese were using barely enough forces to do the job.

The only bright spot was the Philippines, which held out longer than anywhere else, and would have held out even longer had MacArthur not screwed up their supplies.

Fortunately for us, 1942 was the last time a US or British forces would suffer such a comprehensive defeat.

(Yes, we lost at Kasserine Pass, but it was not a defeat on this scale.)


8 posted on 03/02/2012 7:42:40 AM PST by GreenLanternCorps ("Barack Obama" is Swahili for "Jimmy Carter".)
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To: NYer
Military campaigns ebb and flow, begin and end, but on the holocaust front there were no days off while the war went on. Thanks for the post NYer.

‘Hitler’s Pope praised for preventing their deportation to death camps

9 posted on 03/02/2012 9:15:03 AM PST by Homer_J_Simpson ("Every nation has the government that it deserves." - Joseph de Maistre (1753-1821))
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To: Homer_J_Simpson

10 posted on 03/02/2012 11:14:26 AM PST by CougarGA7 ("History is politics projected into the past" - Michael Pokrovski)
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To: tcrlaf
The Langley was the United States 1st aircraft carrier. It was originally a collier call the Jupiter. I've always found it interesting that the first American carrier would be the first one lost in combat too.


11 posted on 03/02/2012 11:22:56 AM PST by CougarGA7 ("History is politics projected into the past" - Michael Pokrovski)
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To: CougarGA7

I worked for a man, who was Dutch Army, and was captured on Java. Spent 5 years in a Jap POW cage, best Engineer I ever worked for, absolutely unflappable. His son was killed in VN, excellent man.


12 posted on 03/02/2012 11:23:55 AM PST by Little Bill (Sorry)
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To: GreenLanternCorps
Poor land commanders in the Philippines

-snip-

The only bright spot was the Philippines, which held out longer than anywhere else, and would have held out even longer had MacArthur not screwed up their supplies.

Two questions: First, if the Philippine land commanders were as you say poor, how then could the only bright spot in the Pacific have been in the Philippines? Second, how did MacArthur screw up supplies?

13 posted on 03/02/2012 1:13:46 PM PST by fso301
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To: fso301

On the supply side there was the issue of his backing the enforcement of Filipino law regarding the transport of food stocks across province borders. This was even after he had called for falling back to Bataan. Tons of rice and other essentials were left behind because of that. At the government depot in Cabanatuan about 10 million tons of rice was left behind to be captured by the Japanese due to the enforcement of these laws.


14 posted on 03/02/2012 2:21:41 PM PST by CougarGA7 ("History is politics projected into the past" - Michael Pokrovski)
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To: CougarGA7
On the supply side there was the issue of his backing the enforcement of Filipino law regarding the transport of food stocks across province borders. This was even after he had called for falling back to Bataan.

Ok but under WPO-3, how many people were to be fed and for how long versus the actual numbers?

I must disclose that I've never actually had before me the actual full text of any WPO variants so, I go on my general understanding that WPO-3 called for sufficient supplies for 40K men to hold out at most 6 months.

Tons of rice and other essentials were left behind because of that. At the government depot in Cabanatuan about 10 million tons of rice was left behind to be captured by the Japanese due to the enforcement of these laws.

I don't dispute that a lot of food was left behind but if the amount was in exces of what was called for under WPO-3, why not leave it behind for the civilian population? Furthermore, MacArthur had only been commander less than 6 months and his orders were to execute Rainbow-5. Why had no previous commanders who were under WPO at least provisioned Bataan and the Manila Bay island fortresses with non-perishables?

I dare say that in mid to late Dec 1941 when MacArthur switched from Rainbow-5 to WPO-3, had the American's (and Filipinos) understood they would not be resupplied and that the enemy were little more than primal savages, the Quartermaster Corps would have supplied Bataan and the island fortresses accordingly.

15 posted on 03/02/2012 4:08:24 PM PST by fso301
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To: Homer_J_Simpson
Military campaigns ebb and flow, begin and end, but on the holocaust front there were no days off while the war went on. Thanks for the post NYer. ‘Hitler’s Pope praised for preventing their deportation to death camps

The "Hitler's Pope" monniker came straight from Moscow and the left has obediently clung to it ever since.

16 posted on 03/02/2012 4:15:28 PM PST by fso301
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To: fso301
Ok but under WPO-3, how many people were to be fed and for how long versus the actual numbers?

Well, first of all MacArthur would have been in the wrong to go by Orange's supply requirements to the letter. He knew his force was far larger than the 43,000 men called for six months supply in WPO-3. Also, remember that some in the WPD felt that MacArthur would set the Filopino force up to be able to last even as long as 12 months. This is what makes abandoning items like that 10 million tons of rice all the more damning.

Even with that, he still did not have Bataan supplied with the amount of food stuff as outlined by WPO-3. In the first week of January, quartermaster assessments of food stores on Bataan were placed at 20 to 40 days depending on the item. Even if we assume that this was calculated using 80 to 90k people instead of the planned 43k it still puts the built up stocks on the pennensula at less than half of what was required by WPO-3. When G-4 gave this report to MacArthur, the bleakness of the situation prompted him to issue the half-ration order on January 5th. Maybe they should have moved that rice.

Of course, MacArthur would have liked to have moved these supplies after he got that report, but by then he had waited until it was too late to move the amount of supplies that he would have needed to even reach the WPO-3 requirements.

And again, him being a commander in that theater for only 6 months is no excuse. He had been there longer than any of the previous commanders and was well versed on the situation from the word go. He wasn't just dropped in the Philippines from a farm in Kansas, he was the man who already was in charge of training the Filopino Army, the only change was that he inherited the small American force too. Nobody knew the state of things on the ground better than him. But despite that he still failed miserably at supplying the men on Bataan.

17 posted on 03/02/2012 9:27:25 PM PST by CougarGA7 ("History is politics projected into the past" - Michael Pokrovski)
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To: CougarGA7; Homer_J_Simpson
Well, first of all MacArthur would have been in the wrong to go by Orange's supply requirements to the letter. He knew his force was far larger than the 43,000 men called for six months supply in WPO-3.

The consequences of a failed strategy are always severe. This was no different on Luzon when it became apparent that the Japanese could not be defeated on the beaches per RAINBOW-5 and WPO-3 was placed into effect.

As for the supply situation, my understanding is that the increased number of men to feed in Bataan over what was called for in WPO-3 was known. What was unforseen were the additional 25K-35K civilian refugees and residents of Bataan that also ended up being fed out of USAFFE Quartermaster supplies.

On Dec 8, there were less than 1,300 officers and enlisted men in the USAFFE Quartermasters Corps serving the U.S. Army, Philippine Scouts and Commonwealth Army. This was about 75% understrength for what was generally regarded as the minimum number of men (4K) required to maintain efficient field supply for a force of 100K men.

Prior to Dec 1941, Brig. Gen. Charles C. Drake, the Chief Quartermaster in the Philippines issued a logistics report showing that at least 14 days under good conditions would be needed to get 180 days of supplies for 43K men into Bataan. As we know, the actual number ended up being closer to 100K soldiers and civilians.

Between Dec 8 and Dec 23, the principal quartermasters challenge was supplying dispersed forward positions under RAINBOW-5. On Dec 23, Brig. Gen. Richard J. Marshal, MacArthur's Deputy Chief of Staff notified Gen Drake that WPO-3 was in effect and that he had seven days to supply Corregidor and Bataan. At about the same time, the Philippine rail system ceased functioning.

The degraded transport system in part necessitated authorization being issued to requisition civilian vehicles. To help overcome issues of transportation and schedule, the withdrawal of supplies from forward areas into Bataan depended heavily upon the willingness of combat officers to transport their men and supplies (food, fuel and clothing), a willingness unequally shared.

When retreating forces also transported supplies, the choice of which supplies if any to transport was largely up to what happened to be available and preferences of individual officers and men.

Also, remember that some in the WPD felt that MacArthur would set the Filopino force up to be able to last even as long as 12 months.

That may have been the case but for the most part, supplies for the Commonwealth force had to come from stateside and funds were not made available by Washington in meaningful amounts until approx Sept 1941.

This is what makes abandoning items like that 10 million tons of rice all the more damning.

Contrary to popular portrayals, it's not as if these foodstuffs were sitting out there in U.S. Government depots but MacArthur somehow prevented their being used. Not acquiring millions of tons of rice from the Cabanatuan Rice Central warehouses, not transporting rice beyond the Province it was purchased in nor seizing other local foodstuffs were conscious political and humanitarian decisions by MacArthur.

Even with that, he still did not have Bataan supplied with the amount of food stuff as outlined by WPO-3. In the first week of January, quartermaster assessments of food stores on Bataan were placed at 20 to 40 days depending on the item.

Those meager stores came from field provisions rather than the reserve supplies requested by USAFFE in the summer of 1941 of which only 500K cans of C rations had arrived from Stateside by Dec 1941.

Even if we assume that this was calculated using 80 to 90k people instead of the planned 43k it still puts the built up stocks on the pennensula at less than half of what was required by WPO-3. When G-4 gave this report to MacArthur, the bleakness of the situation prompted him to issue the half-ration order on January 5th. Maybe they should have moved that rice.

Again, not moving the rice was a political and humanitarian decision.

Of course, MacArthur would have liked to have moved these supplies after he got that report, but by then he had waited until it was too late to move the amount of supplies that he would have needed to even reach the WPO-3 requirements.

And again, him being a commander in that theater for only 6 months is no excuse. He had been there longer than any of the previous commanders and was well versed on the situation from the word go.

I assume you meant his total time spent in the Philippines was longer than that of any previous commander.

He wasn't just dropped in the Philippines from a farm in Kansas, he was the man who already was in charge of training the Filopino Army, the only change was that he inherited the small American force too.

Except the Filipino regular army numbered only a few thousand and it's approx 100K reserve force existed largely on paper due to a variety of political factors in the Commonwealth and Washington.

Nobody knew the state of things on the ground better than him. But despite that he still failed miserably at supplying the men on Bataan.

In the summer of 1941 Gen. Drake submitted requisitions to the War Department for supplies sufficient to last 50,000 men 180 days. By Dec 8, 1941, only 1,000,000 gallons of gasoline and some 500K cans of C rations had arrived in Manila.

For further reading, see:

Brig Gen Charles C. Drake, "Report of Operations of Quartermaster Corps USAFFE and USFIP in the Philippine Islands, 27 Jul 41-6 May 42"

Stauffer, Aliv P., "United States Army in World War II ,The Technical Services, The Quartermaster Corps: Operations in the war against Japan",Center of Military History, United States Army, 1956

18 posted on 03/03/2012 3:13:47 AM PST by fso301
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To: fso301
Not acquiring millions of tons of rice from the Cabanatuan Rice Central warehouses, not transporting rice beyond the Province it was purchased in nor seizing other local foodstuffs were conscious political and humanitarian decisions by MacArthur.

I don't think there is any proof that he did any of this for humanitarian reasons. He did short his troops on Bataan by doing that though.

19 posted on 03/03/2012 3:47:11 AM PST by CougarGA7 ("History is politics projected into the past" - Michael Pokrovski)
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To: CougarGA7
I don't think there is any proof that he did any of this for humanitarian reasons.

That he supplied the 25K-25K refugees and residents of Bataan from the meager provisions is evidence for humanitarian motives. As for political reasons:

"When it became obvious shortly after the Japanese landings that Luzon might soon come completely under enemy control, the increasing objection of the Commonwealth Government to measures that might reduce the food available to the Philippine public under Japanese occupation handicapped further accumulation of food reserves. This objection was reflected in the frequent refusal of Headquarters, USAFFE, to approve the commandeering of food, even the seizure of stocks owned by Japanese nationals."

Stauffer, Aliv P., "United States Army in World War II ,The Technical Services, The Quartermaster Corps: Operations in the war against Japan", Center of Military History, United States Army, (p9), 1956


20 posted on 03/03/2012 4:03:55 AM PST by fso301
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To: fso301

There are no orders from MacArthur commanding that food stocks be left for humanitarian reasons. Additionally, they could have easily have stocked Bataan with the required (minimum) or even realistic amounts of food had MacArthur actually been on the ball about the real situation. (The Navy was and their men had adequate supplied, but granted they didn’t have nearly the numbers).

At full rations 80k soldiers would need around 160 tons of food per day. Rounding up that’s 30,000 tons of food for the required 6 months. That’s well short of the 10 million in rice stores at Cabanatuan, which was one of several food stockpiles. Had MacArthur been prepared, he could have easily stocked Bataan without causing any type of humanitarian crisis.

No, I think his motivations for enforcing the provincial laws were more politically contrived around bolstering his friend Quezon than it was any effort to think of the civilians first. And he definitely wasn’t thinking of his men first.


21 posted on 03/03/2012 11:48:10 AM PST by CougarGA7 ("History is politics projected into the past" - Michael Pokrovski)
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To: Homer_J_Simpson
Ugh, lead day messed me up. Better late than never.

Photobucket

22 posted on 03/03/2012 12:26:10 PM PST by CougarGA7 ("History is politics projected into the past" - Michael Pokrovski)
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To: CougarGA7
There are no orders from MacArthur commanding that food stocks be left for humanitarian reasons.

As I pointed out in my prior post, evidence for humanitarianism comes from his decision to feed the refugees and residents of Bataan out of woefully inadequate food stocks.

Was it a written order? I don't know. An order of some sort went out to feed the civilians. Would it serve as an example of humanitarian thinking on the part of MacArthur that should be taken into account when considering the civilian foodstocks throughout Luzon, yes.

Additionally, they could have easily have stocked Bataan

In light of the estimated two weeks under good conditions needed to stock Bataan with 180 days worth of supplies for 43K men, what could have easily been done when orders were to send supplies forward in support of RAINBOW-5?

with the required (minimum) or even realistic amounts of food had MacArthur actually been on the ball about the real situation.

What would a reasonable commander have done in that situation? Two weeks into the war and the rail network ceased operation and transport situation was so chaotic that the Quartermasters Corps had to destroy supplies in place due to lack of time and transport.

We aren't talking about much in the way of forward supplies that could be withdrawn into Bataan, the forward depots held about a 10 day supply at best. These weren't reserves. The Quartermaster had requested reserves of which only 500K cans of C rations had arrived from Stateside by Dec 8.

(The Navy was and their men had adequate supplied, but granted they didn’t have nearly the numbers).

Less than 5K navy men remained. My understanding is the large naval vessels for the most part weighed anchor and sailed out of Manila Bay soon after the shooting started. The remaining vessels comprised inshore patrol craft, submarine forces, PT boats and assorted auxiliary vessels.

Naval vessels tend to berth near their supplies. Army Quartermasters didn't check branch of service before issuing rations which did benefit navy people who also had their separate supplies. 1,500 marines on Corregidor brought their own food supplies with them yet drew rations from the Army Quartermaster.

At full rations 80k soldiers would need around 160 tons of food per day. Rounding up that’s 30,000 tons of food for the required 6 months. That’s well short of the 10 million in rice stores at Cabanatuan, which was one of several food stockpiles. Had MacArthur been prepared, he could have easily stocked Bataan without causing any type of humanitarian crisis.

The 10 million tons of rice was significant but weighing into decision making may have been seizure of the freighter Si-Kiang which was bound for Indochina with 5 million pounds of flour and large quantities of petroleum. The Si-Kiang was seized and brought to Bataan but in late '41 and early '42, the God's of War were favoring the Japanese. The Si-Kiang was bombed and sunk before the flour could be unloaded.

Perhaps by the time the Si-Kiang was lost, there was no ability to go back and obtain civilian foodstuffs.

Furthermore, no matter how well fed, the army couldn't hold out without ammunition and fuel. At the time Bataan fell, I believe only a few weeks fuel and ammunition remained. So, had the defenders of Bataan been well fed, they would have run out of fuel and ammunition sometime in May 1942. Had the civilians on Bataan not been fed from Quartermaster's supplies, the defenders may have been able to hold out for another month at which point their food, fuel and ammo would have been exhausted.

No, I think his motivations for enforcing the provincial laws were more politically contrived around bolstering his friend Quezon than it was any effort to think of the civilians first. And he definitely wasn’t thinking of his men first.

Nothing wrong with having hunches. I agree with you that MacArthur had to think about Quezon's needs since any Philippine government in exile/Bataan would involve Quezon and he needed to maintain credibility among the people.

Well before Dec 8, Quezon had been speaking of a shift towards official neutrality and had been making goodwill gestures towards Tokyo. So yes, there was a public sentiment that had to be taken into consideration.

In this thread I previously posted and referenced information that the decisions to not appropriate civilian foodstuffs were based on political and humanitarian considerations. As always, I am open to evaluating new information that would suggest the political considerations I referenced were not as significant as I understand them to be.

23 posted on 03/03/2012 4:06:54 PM PST by fso301
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To: CougarGA7

That’s an interesting article in that issue about Chiang Kai Shek


24 posted on 03/03/2012 5:25:56 PM PST by fso301
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To: fso301

I would attribute the feeding of civilians on Bataan to the commanders in the field, not MacArthur. I can’t find any orders issued by him or attributed to him to share those rations. And remember not to associate government food stocks as civilian foodstocks. The reference you cite in the Green Book concerns commandiering individual and town food supplies, not accessing a government store and taking a minor percentage of the total supply. Government supplies depots like the Cabantuan supplies were designated for use by the troops when they were defending the beaches among other things and it would stand to reason that this would still be true in the withdraw to Bataan.

The Navy, though they had a smaller outfit to supply, began withdrawing supplies to Corregidor a full 10 days before MacArhtur did. They even gave some of their surplus after completing this task to the army. It is unfortunate that there were still not coordinated logistics even by this point in time. It harkens back to the days when the army had to charter civilian liners to load units and provisions for the invasion of the Philippines in 1898.

Still, MacArthur had plenty of time to make the right call and begin supplying Bataan. He failed on this account and made his decisions after it was too late to meet the demand.


25 posted on 03/03/2012 6:40:45 PM PST by CougarGA7 ("History is politics projected into the past" - Michael Pokrovski)
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To: CougarGA7
I would attribute the feeding of civilians on Bataan to the commanders in the field, not MacArthur. I can’t find any orders issued by him or attributed to him to share those rations.

That should be an easy enough question to sort out. MacArthur himself takes responsibility for establishing the refugee camps. So, either his claim can be corroborated or not. Here's one place where he claims responsibility:

My food situation had been increasingly prejudiced by the great number of civilians who had fled into Bataan with our army forces. The Japanese had craftily furthered this movement by friving the frightened population of the province of Zambales, just north of Bataan, into our lines, knowing full well we would feed them -- a humanitarian measure which cut deeply into our food stocks. I had to establish refugee camps back of our defense positions for many thousands of these forlorn people, mostly old men, women, and children. It forced me to cut the soldiers rations by not only half, but later to one quarter of the prescribed allowance."

MacArthur, Douglas A. (1965) "Reminiscences: General of the Army Douglas MacArthur", (p130), Fawcett Publications

As it pertains to prior mention on this thread of political and humanitarian reasons behind not seizing civilian supplies and obeying Philippine prohibitions against transporting foodstuffs across provincial lines, we have here from MacArthur circa Dec 18, 1941

"I was greatly concerned by the needs of the stricken civilian population and President Roosevelt authorized me to make available 200-million pesos for relief purposes. I at once turned this amount over to President Quezon. "

MacArthur, Douglas A. (1965) "Reminiscences: General of the Army Douglas MacArthur", (p123), Fawcett Publications

To emphasis the seriousness of official USAFFE policy towards commandeering civilian foodstuffs:

When it became obvious shortly after the Japanese landings that Luzon might soon come completely under enemy control, the increasing objection of the Commonwealth Government to measures that might reduce the food available to the Philippine public under Japanese occupation handicapped further accumulation of food reserves. This objection was reflected in the frequent re- fusal of Headquarters, USAFFE, to approve the commandeering of food, even the seizure of stocks owned by Japanese nationals.

An incident at the Tarlac Depot illus- trates this difficulty. The commanding of- ficer, Col. Charles S. Lawrence, planned the confiscation of 2,000 cases of canned fish and corned beef and sizable quantities of clothing, all of which were held in the warehouses of Japanese firms. But USAFFE disapproved the plan and informed Colonel Lawrence that he would be court-martialed if he took the goods.

Stauffer, Alvin P., (1956) "United States Army in World War II ,The Technical Services, The Quartermaster Corps: Operations in the war against Japan",Center of Military History, United States Army, (p-9)

And remember not to associate government food stocks as civilian foodstocks. The reference you cite in the Green Book concerns commandiering individual and town food supplies, not accessing a government store and taking a minor percentage of the total supply.

I may have gotten some items reversed or co-mingled. Sorry about that. As I understand it, forward units defending Luzon beaches were supplied out of three regional depots at Tarlac, Los Banos and Gaugau. Of these three, Tarlac was the largest. These regional depots were in turned supplied by the main USAFFE Quartermasters depot at Manila.

Forces did not draw all their food from USAFFE stores. Even in the forward areas post Dec 8, much food such as perishables was purchased in local markets.

Government supplies depots like the Cabantuan supplies were designated for use by the troops when they were defending the beaches among other things and it would stand to reason that this would still be true in the withdraw to Bataan.

The Cabanatuan Rice Central to my knowledge was not under control of USAFFE. It was just a place where USAFFE could purchase rice as needed. I believe the rice was unhusked which meant it would then have to be milled but mills did exist on Bataan.

The Navy, though they had a smaller outfit to supply, began withdrawing supplies to Corregidor a full 10 days before MacArhtur did. They even gave some of their surplus after completing this task to the army. It is unfortunate that there were still not coordinated logistics even by this point in time. It harkens back to the days when the army had to charter civilian liners to load units and provisions for the invasion of the Philippines in 1898.

The service branches did not operate well together in those days. The navy received first word in the Philippines of the attack on Pearl Harbor yet failed to call MacArthur to ask if he heard the news.

Still, MacArthur had plenty of time to make the right call and begin supplying Bataan. He failed on this account and made his decisions after it was too late to meet the demand.

If at best the USAFFE on Dec 7, 1941 maintained a 60 day supply and defensive reserves were on back order to the States, what should MacArthur have done that would have enabled Bataan to hold out until say July 1942?

I close with another Quartermasters quote:

Peacetime procedures for meeting current supply requirements did not permit the ac- cumulation of stocks in quantities large enough to fill gaps in the defense reserves. The main supply installation, the Philip- pine Quartermaster Depot in Manila, requi- sitioned items for current use only in the quantities necessary to maintain a sixty-day level of supply for U.S. troops and Philip- pine Scouts. Since rice, sugar, coffee, and perishable foods were abundant in the com- mercial markets, the depot did not buy the items as they were needed but delegated their procurement to posts and stations. These installations, able to secure these foods whenever they were wanted, filled their im- mediate requirements by frequent purchases from nearby merchants but built up, nor- mally, only a few days' reserve. This meant that when war came there were only small stocks of these essential supplies.

The Manila Base Quartermaster Depot, hurriedly established in September 1941, was designed to perform for the Philippine Army the same functions that the Philip- pine Quartermaster Depot performed for the Regular Army, but the early outbreak of war gave it too little time to obtain ade- quate stocks for either current or reserve use. Accordingly the Philippine Quarter- master Depot was given responsibility for supplying the Commonwealth Army, with the result that its limited stocks were soon almost depleted.

Stauffer, Alvin P., (1956) "United States Army in World War II ,The Technical Services, The Quartermaster Corps: Operations in the war against Japan",Center of Military History, United States Army, (p-5)


26 posted on 03/03/2012 11:06:02 PM PST by fso301
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To: fso301
"Reminiscences: General of the Army Douglas MacArthur"

I think the title says it all. Remember, Mac was a self promoter, I'm sure he remembers it that way. But his failure to properly move supplies tells a different story.

And we are still left with the fact that there were adequate supplies of food availible that would not have interfered with the civilian food supply. The minor cases from the Green Book easily represent the localized foodstores which they were ordered to leave alone but there were large supluses that did not fall under those restrictions which were readily available yet still not accessed.

My understanding of facilities like the ones on Cananatuan was that it was under Filopino authority, but at the disposal of the USAFFE per Quezon. This means that supplies could be requisitioned from the facility and not just purchased. Even so, the supplies on Tarlac, and Los Banos were also abandoned. These were also large depots and these were under direct USAFFE control.

MacArthur could have moved these supplies to Bataan, but reacted too late, 10 days later than the Navy in fact, and left Bataan undersupplied as a result.

27 posted on 03/03/2012 11:52:55 PM PST by CougarGA7 ("History is politics projected into the past" - Michael Pokrovski)
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To: CougarGA7
I think the title says it all. Remember, Mac was a self promoter, I'm sure he remembers it that way. But his failure to properly move supplies tells a different story.

As a group, generals & admirals aren't known for their humility.

The only reason I referenced it was to include claims which seemed readily verifiable. Either record exists that FDR authorized the 200-million peso humanitarian payments or not.

As for MacArthur asserting the refugee camps were set up on his orders, if that wasn't the case, surely there would be some surviving junior officer claiming refugees were fed and sheltered without orders from HQ USAFFE? That could not have been kept quiet.

Under conditions as they existed in Bataan, I find it exceedingly difficult to imagine field officers without orders drawing from their own inadequate supplies and giving them to civilians whose numbers may have exceeded a quarter of the military forces. Were that the case, a historian has an explosive story of mutiny.

And we are still left with the fact that there were adequate supplies of food availible that would not have interfered with the civilian food supply. The minor cases from the Green Book easily represent the localized foodstores which they were ordered to leave alone but there were large supluses that did not fall under those restrictions which were readily available yet still not accessed.

Do you mean large USAFFE stores, or Commonwealth/civilian stores? I address Cabunatuan a little farther down in this post.

My understanding of facilities like the ones on Cananatuan was that it was under Filopino authority, but at the disposal of the USAFFE per Quezon. This means that supplies could be requisitioned from the facility and not just purchased.

I believe our understanding here is substantially similar. The question remains as to why civilian stores accessible to USAFFE weren't drawn upon? This is where I believe we differ.

Let's focus on Cabanatuan Rice Central. Yes, a lot of rice was stored there. However, my understanding is that it was unhusked rice. That the rice at Cabanatuan was unhusked is to me significant in that it probably wasn't bagged. I'm not claiming it was unbagged but I assume the facility received bulk delivery from the fields, stored the rice and as bulk orders came in, it would be loaded into graintrailers/dumptrucks/railcars for delivery to mills.

The rice wouldn't be bagged until after the mills had finished processing it.

I'm certain pre-war agricultural reports and news articles exist that would clarify this as well as the markets served by Cabanatuan.

If Cabanatuan rice was in fact unbagged, a real transport problem existed. How could such quantities of loose grain be transported all the way into Bataan? Cabunatuan is not far to the east of Tarlac and if the railroad between Tarlac and Manila was non-operating by mid-December, how was the rice to be transported to the Manila area? Once in the Manila area, the rice either would have to go into Bataan via water or the Bataan Provincial Highway which was just a two-lane dirt road.

If a good answer exists, I am willing to reevaluate my opinion.

Even so, the supplies on Tarlac, and Los Banos were also abandoned. These were also large depots and these were under direct USAFFE control.

My understanding is that Tarlac was the largest regional USAFFE depot and had to be abandoned due to lack of transport. Rail was the prime means of moving supplies between Manila and Tarlac. However, railroad operations were so degraded as to have essentially ceased between the first and second week of fighting. IIRC, by Dec 25, not a single locomotive was operating.

There may have been operable locomotives but with lines under constant attack, the civilian crews refused to operate what remaining locomotives may have been useable.

With rail operations not possible, that left road transport and we've already discussed the lack of trucks and issues of transport on clogged, inadequate roads that were under daylight attack.

As for Los Banos and Gaugau, I would have to research their situations but my understanding is never-the-less that Tarlac was the largest USAFFE regional depot.

MacArthur could have moved these supplies to Bataan, but reacted too late, 10 days later than the Navy in fact, and left Bataan undersupplied as a result.

Comparing naval versus army logistics is an apples oranges comparison. The navy generally keeps it's supplies close to the docks. Since it also controlled the shipping in Manila Bay, it could claim priority on cargo destined for Bataan.

Never-the-less, provisioning for 5K navy men was probably little more than unloading dockside warehouses onto boats and then transporting the cargo across the Bay to Bataan.

I don't know but If the navy began moving supplies to Bataan on Dec 13, under what war plan were they operating? MacArthur's orders from Marshal were to execute Rainbow-5.

Separating ourselves from the clarity of hindsight, how would MacArthur ordering the Quartermasters to begin supplying Bataan in any meaningful way circa Dec 13 have been consistent with carrying out Rainbow-5?

Even if food for 24 months was available on Bataan, for how long could the garrison have held out?

28 posted on 03/04/2012 9:18:32 AM PST by fso301
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To: Homer_J_Simpson; Seizethecarp
Interesting p5 article about the air raid false alarm in Oahu. In the early morning hours of March 4, Japanese bombs would once again fall on the island.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_K

29 posted on 03/04/2012 10:56:38 AM PST by fso301
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To: fso301

Good thing the seaplane attack was ineffective. Some folks in HI might have ignored the sirens thinking it was another false alarm!


30 posted on 03/04/2012 11:34:07 AM PST by Seizethecarp
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To: Seizethecarp
Some folks in HI might have ignored the sirens thinking it was another false alarm!

The timing of the false alarm so soon to the actual raid makes one wonder if intel had caught wind that something might be up?

31 posted on 03/04/2012 12:03:53 PM PST by fso301
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To: fso301
As a group, generals & admirals aren't known for their humility.

Hense why I would take any memoir by MacArthur with a grain of salt.

Under conditions as they existed in Bataan, I find it exceedingly difficult to imagine field officers without orders drawing from their own inadequate supplies and giving them to civilians whose numbers may have exceeded a quarter of the military forces.

No. That's not that uncommon, especially in American military history.

You keep fixating on the rice at Cabanatuan being unhusked. This is only one example of a larger problem of not gathering necessary supplies. Whether its is husked or not is insignificant. They milled flour on Bataan, they would have husked rice. The real point here is that there were large stores of food that were not gathered when they should have been. MacArthur reacted too late to get these supplies moved, hence the lack of transport at places like Tarlac. The reason Tarlac didn't have sufficient rail and truck capacity is that much of it had already fled the area. Even Col. E.B. Miller mentions seeing the many empty trucks coming from the depots as drivers fled before loading up supplies. The situation had already reached a breaking point before MacArthur even tried to order any of these supplies moved. He failed to give the order at a reasonable time. This is why the Navy's reaction is an important aspect. It has nothing to do with the amount of supplies moved, but when they reacted. They could see that things were not going to go well and reacted to this a full 10 days before MacArthur was able to process that reality. Like you said, with the Navy having smaller forces, and closer logistical lines, they really had more leeway in how soon they would have to react and yet still they figured it out over a week before MacArthur.

32 posted on 03/04/2012 8:04:52 PM PST by CougarGA7 ("History is politics projected into the past" - Michael Pokrovski)
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To: CougarGA7

Three of the sister ships later got lost at sea, in the Bermuda Triangle!


33 posted on 03/04/2012 8:10:12 PM PST by narses
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To: CougarGA7
Hense why I would take any memoir by MacArthur with a grain of salt.

As I said, I only used the two MacArthur quotes because off the top of my head, I knew they would be verifiable evidence that responded to your question about humanitarian reasons behind obeying Filipino civil law regarding transport of food.

Either FDR authorized payment or MacArthur was BS'ing. Verifying FDR's authorization should be relatively easy. I've read and heard countless criticisms of MacArthur but to date, I'm unaware of anyone discrediting such claim. Concerning the refugees, either MacArthur authorized establishment and support of the refugee camps or he was BS'ing. To date, I'm unaware of anyone discrediting such claim.

I previously wrote:

Under conditions as they existed in Bataan, I find it exceedingly difficult to imagine field officers without orders drawing from their own inadequate supplies and giving them to civilians whose numbers may have exceeded a quarter of the military forces.
You responded with:

No. That's not that uncommon, especially in American military history.

Gen. Sherman's army notwithstanding, GI's certainly have a tradition of distributing food and candy amongst locals. However, in situations where the supply situation was strained such as the immediate aftermath of VE-Day, GI's received normal rations while a lot of German POW's went very hungry.

Prior to VE-Day, airlifts of humanitarian supplies into Denmark and the Netherlands required high level authorization on both sides.

In Chosun, I don't know to what extent civilan refugees existed but U.S. forces in the pocket were able to be resupplied. Pre-Inchon, I don't know much about how refugees were handled aside from having read of NORKs infiltrating refugee columns.

In Vietnam, firebases were essentially designed to be surrounded.

You keep fixating on the rice at Cabanatuan being unhusked.

Yes but whenever criticisms of MacArthur's handling of the food supplies is mentioned, rice at Cabanatuan is invariably addressed in such a way as to conjur images of an immense warehouse somewhere in the area of Manila, possibly dockside with rail spurs containing pallets and pallets of bagged polished rice.

Perhaps, you were thinking of mention of Cabanatuan in other threads. In this particular thread, it was you that first addressed the rice at Cabanatuan:

At the government depot in Cabanatuan about 10 million tons of rice was left behind

Only in my most recent reply in this thread did I mention the rice at Cabanatuan being unhusked. I did this to make clear the transport issue. You just can't take loose grain and load it into a 2 1/2 ton truck (ma deuce) or a flat bed trailer and expect to haul it anywhere.

Furthermore, from where would all the trucks come from? Assume you wanted to requisition half of the 10 million pound supply at Cabanatuan. 5 million pounds = 2,500 tons. Assume you have dump trucks capable of hauling 5 tons each. That's 500 truckloads. Per Google direction finder, Cabanatuan City to the north end of Bataan peninsula is about 75 miles. Add another 25 to get to Mariveles on the southern tip.

Given the adverse conditions, one truck might complete one round trip in 24-48 hours. You will be hauling rice for a long time.

This is only one example of a larger problem of not gathering necessary supplies.

This is why I dwelled on Cabanatuan. When you begin crunching numbers, the picture changes.

Whether its is husked or not is insignificant. They milled flour on Bataan, they would have husked rice.

I agree, unhusked rice could be milled in Bataan. My point is that from what I know of agriculture having toured rice mills when living in Southern Louisiana a few years ago, the rice is not bagged until it has been milled. Loose grain requires closed bed transport containers. It just can't be loaded onto flatbeds and covered with a tarpaulin.

The real point here is that there were large stores of food that were not gathered when they should have been.

Aside from the Commonwealth/civilian stores at Cabanatuan that are always mentioned by MacArthur critics, what are some other comparably large Commonwealth/civilian warehouses? I'll address them as well. I ask this in all seriousness because off the top of my head, I don't recall critics ever mentioning other such warehouses.

MacArthur reacted too late to get these supplies moved, hence the lack of transport at places like Tarlac.

I don't dispute that. My point has always been that such are the consequences of a failed strategy. No sooner had the main Japanese forces landed than the rout was on. This is unfortunate because those same green Filipino troops who ran from the beaches quickly found their nerve in the jungles of Bataan and gave an excellent accounting for themselves.

The reason Tarlac didn't have sufficient rail and truck capacity is that much of it had already fled the area.

First, let's consider the quantity of supplies available at Tarlac on Dec 15. Remember, Tarlac was the largest of 3 USAFFE regional depot's on Luzon. Presumably, troops in the Manila/Bataan area were provisioned out of the regional depot at Gaugau and/or the central depot in Manila.

No figures on shipments from the Manila Depot are available, but thirty-five trainloads of Quartermaster supplies are estimated to have been delivered to the depots at Tarlac, Los Banos, and Guagua. 21 Shipments of rations to Tarlac, for example, comprised a five-day level of supply, and by 15 December an eight-day stock of food had been accumulated.

Stauffer, Alvin P., (1956) "United States Army in World War II ,The Technical Services, The Quartermaster Corps: Operations in the war against Japan",Center of Military History, United States Army, (p-8)

So, it appears that Tarlac, the largest USAFFE regional depot had perhaps a 10 day supply. What difference would it have made had every last can of spam been withdrawn from Tarlac to Bataan? The 10 day supply would have been for units supplied out of Tarlac which may have been no more than 40 percent of the total Luzon force. This means, perhaps no more than 4 days supply for the entire Luzon force.

Hopefully my point is now clear. Had each of the regional depot's stores been withdrawn to Bataan, it wouldn't have amounted to much more than two weeks total rations.

Even Col. E.B. Miller mentions seeing the many empty trucks coming from the depots as drivers fled before loading up supplies.

I know you already know this but for those who may be following this thread, Col Miller's book while blood boiling is a composite record. Not everything he writes of in Bataan did he experience personally. But I still think it reasonable that Col. Miller did see at least some empty trucks going into Bataan. Clearly, empty trucks did go into Bataan as evidenced by:

Removal of Quartermaster stocks to Bataan therefore depended mainly upon the willingness of combat officers to load their trucks with food, gasoline, and clothing. Unfortunately, while units took all they could, they did not always take what the QMC wanted. The commander of a Philippine Scout regiment, when asked to remove from Fort Stotsenburg whatever subsistence his unit could use, reportedly answered that he was "not even interested."

Stauffer, Alvin P., (1956) "United States Army in World War II ,The Technical Services, The Quartermaster Corps: Operations in the war against Japan",Center of Military History, United States Army, (p-12)

The situation had already reached a breaking point before MacArthur even tried to order any of these supplies moved. He failed to give the order at a reasonable time.

I think your view excessively discounts the situation at hand:

In mid-December military food stocks fell substantially short of the 180-day supply for 43,000 men on Bataan that was contemplated as a reserve in WPO-3. Yet the number of troops to be fed had increased to almost 80,000, and after the withdrawal to Bataan the number of persons to be sup- plied was further increased by about 25,000 civilians"

Stauffer, Alvin P., (1956) "United States Army in World War II ,The Technical Services, The Quartermaster Corps: Operations in the war against Japan",Center of Military History, United States Army, (p-9)

From the above quote, even if WPO-3 went into effect Dec 15, the supply situation on Bataan would not have been significantly improved.

This is why the Navy's reaction is an important aspect. It has nothing to do with the amount of supplies moved, but when they reacted. They could see that things were not going to go well and reacted to this a full 10 days before MacArthur was able to process that reality.

I still believe a navy-army comparison is apples and oranges. My understanding is in response to war warnings in Nov 1941, Admiral Hart began withdrawing the Asiatic Fleet from Manila Bay. By Nov 25, four destroyers and a destroyer tender left Cavite for Borneo. Before the outbreak of hostilities, all 3 of the Asiatic Fleet's cruisers and 9 of it's 11 destroyers had left Cavite and headed south.

By the morning of Dec 10, important documents were being burned at Cavite.

So yes, for those in the navy, the message was clear- Bon Voyage!

34 posted on 03/05/2012 7:02:02 AM PST by fso301
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To: fso301

That’s the crux of it then isn’t it. I don’t see the comparison to the Navy as apples to oranges, I see it as evidence that they had a better understanding of the situation on the ground than MacArthur did. The lack of food on Bataan was due to a failed strategy and it was MacArthur’s lack of vision which made it impossible to even meet even the minimal requirements.


35 posted on 03/05/2012 12:41:33 PM PST by CougarGA7 ("History is politics projected into the past" - Michael Pokrovski)
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To: CougarGA7
That’s the crux of it then isn’t it. I don’t see the comparison to the Navy as apples to oranges, I see it as evidence that they had a better understanding of the situation on the ground than MacArthur did.

To those navy men left behind at Cavite, there had to be something unsettling about standing dockside watching their fleet with tucked tail hauling ass at flank speed in the opposite direction of Japan before the shooting even started.

I say that with some jest but as I understand it, there was nothing particularly insightful about the movement of navy men across 5 miles of water from Cavite to Bataan... especially after Cavite had been all but destroyed on Dec 10.

IIRC, about 1K marines were ordered from Cavite to Bataan on Dec 8. After Cavite was pounded on Dec 10, Adm. Rockwell, commander of the 16th Naval District recommended abandonment of the base.

The PT squadron decided dispersal might be a good idea and relocated from Cavite over to Sisiman Bay, near Mariveles Harbor on the southern tip of the Bataan.

On Dec 21, 1st Separate Marine Battalion were ordered to withdraw from Cavite to Mariveles. Adm. Rockwell also moved his command from Cavite to Corregidor on Dec 21. On Christmas night Admiral Hart, commander of the Asiatic Fleet snuck out of Manila Bay aboard the submarine Shark.

The lack of food on Bataan was due to a failed strategy and it was MacArthur’s lack of vision which made it impossible to even meet even the minimal requirements.

Had 180 days of balanced rations for 100K men been stored at Bataan, it would have fallen in May 1942 when the ammo and fuel ran out.

The difference was possibly the 25K-35K civilian refugees that had to be fed but required no fuel or ammo.

36 posted on 03/05/2012 8:16:11 PM PST by fso301
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To: fso301

The Navy still saw the writing on the wall way before MacArthur did. And who knows. The men on Bataan lasted until April with significantly less than the WPO-3 mandated supplies for 43k men. If MacArthur would have been smart enough to see he needed to move supplies into Bataan sooner, you know fuel and ammo would have been moved as well. I’d bet they would have been able to push the 1 year envelope that the WPD believed possible, I’d wager October myself.


37 posted on 03/05/2012 10:13:38 PM PST by CougarGA7 ("History is politics projected into the past" - Michael Pokrovski)
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To: CougarGA7
The Navy still saw the writing on the wall way before MacArthur did.

Do we really want to continue in this path and thereby risk shining light on Admiral Hart and the Asiatic Fleet? Thing's don't look so good on the navy side. While MacArthur is crucified for the bad luck timing of planes returning to fields to refuel and rearm just as the initial Japanese attacks from Formosa arrived. What is ever mentioned about the navy? Nothing. Nothing at all. Critics have given the navy a complete pass.

In the pre-dawn hours of Dec 8, orders went out to the Asiatic fleet to be prepared for a dawn attack. Yet, the first engagement between Japanese and American forces in the Philippines took place at about 0700 when Japanese planes attacked the destroyer-seaplane tender Preston which lay at anchor alongside two PBY's...also anchored. A third PBY tended by Preston was in the air... about 15 miles away. All this after being alerted to prepare for a dawn attack. The navy prepared for attack by casting anchors.

After the blue water surface vessels of the Asiatic Fleet fled from the enemy, the 29 submarines of the Asiatic Fleet remained in Manila Bay. On the morning of Dec 8, where were the ~29 submarines of the Asiatic Fleet assigned patrol and picket duty? Surely 29 sub's could form a formidable protective screen about Luzon. Well, they weren't on patrol or picket duty. Instead, they were berthed in Manila Bay (with maybe 2 exceptions). The submarines of the Asiatic Fleet responded to orders to prepare for a dawn attack by checking their mooring lines.

After all the trouble U-boats caused in WWI and given the even greater troubles U-boats were causing in the present war, 29 (with 2 exceptions) U.S. submarines responded to orders to prepare for a dawn attack by making sure their mooring lines were secured to their berths. Actually the sub's submerged in Manila Bay to hide from view but the effect was the same, the sub's were going to remain in port rather than seeking out the enemy.

MacArthur is crucified because a dozen B-17's were caught on the ground while refueling and refitting yet critics remain silent about 27 submarines cowering in Manila Bay. Had those sub's been out on patrol and picket might one of them have tagged a troop transport, tanker or even a carrier?

Even after Dec 8, why is it that most of the PBY's destroyed were destroyed at anchor or while taking off during daylight hours? The PBY could stay aloft from pre-dawn till post-dusk. Why even after Dec 8 weren't they out on dawn to dusk patrols?

Of those naval forces which moved to Bataan prior to WPO-3 going into effect, I seem to recall over 20 percent comprised some or all of the 1K marines that had just arrived from China and were already scheduled to go to Bataan ~Dec 8. My recollection is foggy because I never looked into it deep enough to know which marines were assigned to which units. I know some marines may also have been at Subic Bay (basically bordering Bataan).

In any case, once the marines already planned for Bataan headed for Bataan ~Dec 8, that left 3,600 naval forces outside of Bataan. After Cavite was essentially put out of service on Dec 10, the navy decided to disperse the remaining vessels and assigned PT squadron 3 to Bataan. At the same time, the navy began burning papers at Cavite thereby indicating their intent was to abandon the base.

I don't know how many men were assigned to Squadron 3 but once moved, fewer than 3,600 navy men remained outside Bataan. A significant portion of those would have been at Subic Bay which bordered Bataan.

It wasn't any great insight or sense of reality by Adm. Hart that caused him to move men to Bataan prior to WPO-3. A man that is afraid to fight will always seek an avenue of retreat. Whereas MacArthur had to be ordered off Corregidor in March 1942, Adm. Hart snuck out of Manila aboard a submarine Christmas night 1941.

And who knows. The men on Bataan lasted until April with significantly less than the WPO-3 mandated supplies for 43k men. If MacArthur would have been smart enough to see he needed to move supplies into Bataan sooner, you know fuel and ammo would have been moved as well. I’d bet they would have been able to push the 1 year envelope that the WPD believed possible, I’d wager October myself.

Again, be it business, politics, or military, the consequences of a failed strategy are always severe. Failed tactics can be recovered from fairly quickly but more times than not, failed strategies coincide with turning points.

Given the mauling delivered to the Japanese by Bataan defenders, I agree that had balanced rations along with supplies for 180 been available, they would have held out much longer than 180 days. That's of course a hypothetical because 180 days of ammo never existed on the island.

By April 1942, provisions for 180 days likely would have been available but by Dec 1941, convoys had only just begun arriving.

Where I would lay blame on MacArthur is in not expecting the unexpected by the Japanese. His intelligence and that of Marshal's pointed to an early date of April 1942 which I believe coincided with the end of typhoon/monsoon season. Supply strategy in the Philippines rode on that assumption. The Japanese preempted that strategy. I think it safe to say, the strategy of defeating the enemy on the beaches is one that any combat commander of the era would have agreed with. Even prior to MacArthur taking command in July 1941, Wainwright wrote that he was opposed to WPO-3 and was doing his best do defeat it.

Anyway, my guess and this is just my guess is that once MacArthur realized the scope of the disaster at Pearl, he knew the USAFFE was on it's own and their best if not only hope was to defeat the enemy on the beaches.

When his forces were routed on the beaches by the main Japanese landings circa Dec 20-24, the full consequences of a failed strategy hit home. All that was left was to put WPO-3 into effect which he quickly did.

Had he chosen to contest Manila and thereby provide more time for supplying Bataan he could. Instead, he made the humanitarian decision to declare Manila an open city and complete the retrograde withdrawal into Bataan. That retrograde withdrawal into Bataan is considered by all a military masterpiece.

38 posted on 03/06/2012 12:32:15 PM PST by fso301
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To: CougarGA7
Just to make sure I'm clear, I wrote in post #38

Even prior to MacArthur taking command in July 1941, Wainwright wrote that he was opposed to WPO-3 and was doing his best do defeat it.

By that I meant Gen. Wainwright wrote in the spring of 1941 that he (Wainwright) was doing his best to defeat WPO-3.

39 posted on 03/06/2012 12:38:47 PM PST by fso301
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To: fso301

I don’t see why we need to do that. The Navy figured it out sooner than MacArthur did. That’s all there is to it. The personnel they left behind were fully supplied per WPO-3 and WPL-46 standards.

The fact that Wainwright was against WPO-3 isn’t really significant either. He was not making the call. MacArthur was, and he reacted too slow and those men ended up under-supplied as a result.


40 posted on 03/06/2012 8:44:16 PM PST by CougarGA7 ("History is politics projected into the past" - Michael Pokrovski)
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