Ah - we can get into a peeing match - but what for? It was a blunder that we learned from. Butcher passed away a few years ago - lived in North County San Diego - a good man.
I agree - never give up the ship - however when faced with what he was in real time - I cut him a lot of slack. I think he did the right thing and saved his crew.
We can build ships and aircraft - what does it take to replace a trained man or woman?
I was all with Bucher...I just know what you are told.
Oddly enough in that business, the men are the MOST expendable. They are easily replaced.
I was in Navy boot camp in San Diego when this happened.
My company commander, a chief petty officer was apoplectic with rage at Bucher for surrendering.
By chance we had a class about what you are permitted to do when you surrender. The instructor, another crusty old chief gave us the class by the book, and then told us, "This surrendering crap is for Army pukes!" "Bucher is a coward, and ought to be shot!"
"We are the US NAVY!" "You will NEVER surrender!!!" "You will WIN, or you will DIE!" "You will NEVER, EVER, HAUL DOWN THE FLAG, and you will kill anyone who tries to do so!!"
It made a massive impression on us.