CMS for branded email campaigns

The reason for the Japanese success at Pearl Harbor was the shallow water torpedo. Unlike Taranto, Pearl Harbor is a narrow confined harbor. Torpedo planes required a long "fetch" of water to descend over. They slowly "bled-off" speed, while lining up the target. If they weren't level when the drop was made, the device would auger down too high, and it would fall apart upon "smacking" the water.

Pearl Harbor's geography forced the Japanese to train carefully. First, they had to fly down from the mountains into the harbor, then drop again when they reached the small harbor, ruling out the usual glide-path of a torpedo plane. Mr. Yosioka Adakats invented a torpedo that would work in shallow water (see illustration), but it couldn't be dropped from higher than 25 feet. The low and slow approach is what accounted for many describing these planes as "sitting ducks." Eye-witnesses say if they had a rock they could have hit them. Others can still tell you what the pilot looked like as they flew by at 25 feet smiling and waving.

The torpedo planes slowly filed into the harbor. Since "ten-ten" dock (so called because it's exactly 1010 feet long) offered a good "marker," they followed it, crossed the harbor and made straight for "Battleship row." Here they made numerous drops of their "fish" into the best targets there -- the Oklahoma and West Virginia. Other ships were torpedoed that day, but the Oklahoma and West Virginia took the brunt of the attack (nine torpedoes each). Their sides were literally blasted off. The Oklahoma quickly capsized, while the WV took on a dangerous 28 degrees list, before counter flooding took hold. What made it worse was, as the ships rolled, new torpedo hits occurred above the armor beltline. Damage was catastrophic and wide-spread.

The Tennessee and Maryland were protected by the Oklahoma and West Virginia since their birth was starboard side. They came through relatively unscathed except for a few bomb hits and a scorched hull from the burning oil that was everywhere. The Arizona probably would have rode out the attack since the repair ship vestal was along side, blocking a torpedo shot (many claim one went under it to strike the Arizona). A lucky bomb hot struck the Arizona between turret 1 and turret 2 on the starboard side igniting the forward magazine. One and a half million pounds of gun powder erupted raining hell itself onto the rear quarter decks of the West Virginia and Tennessee. This explosion ranked as the largest man-made bang until a fertilizer ship blew up near Galveston and then the A-Bomb was dropped shortly after.

Doolittle's Tokyo Raid
Are you an eyewitness or survivor of Pearl Harbor?  Contact us for your chance to get your story posted!