76 years ago today

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by mbossman2, Dec 7, 2017.

  1. mbossman2

    mbossman2 I am, in reality, a moose Staff Member

    Aug 4, 1999
    RTP, NC
    was a "day that will live in infamy"

    1941 Radio News : WA4CZD : Free Download & Streaming : Internet Archive

    December 7, 1941
    0342 Hours – A Japanese submarine is spotted off the harbor. The minesweeper USS Condor makes the initial observation. Officers aboard the vessel take note of a periscope and relay the message to the destroyer USS Ward.

    0645 Hours – With the information from the Condor, the Ward seeks out what was believed to be a miniature sub. Eventually, the sub is found and sunk by the Ward, under the command of Lt. William W. Outerbridge. This marks the first casualty of Pearl Harbor.

    0702 Hours – Incoming Japanese fighters are first observed by the Army’s Opana Mobile Radar Station on Oahu. A call is made to Fort Shafter from the station warning of an unusual reading on the radar but the operator is told to wait for a commanding officer to call back.

    0715 Hours – Admiral Husband E. Kimmel is advised of the Japanese mini-sub but is hesitant to act, believing it to be another of many false reports of submarines in the area. Kimmel decides to wait for verification, one of several fatal mistakes made that morning.

    0720 Hours – Fort Shafter responds to Opana’s radar report. Believing the large blip to be US B-17 Flying Fortress bombers scheduled to arrive that morning from California, the lieutenant who calls Opana simply tells the operator, “Don’t worry about it.”

    0733 Hours – The first sign of Japan’s intent to engage the United States wasn’t the first bomb that was dropped. American code breakers decipher a Japanese code and learn that Japanese negotiators were advised to cease talking with US officials. General George C. Marshall considers this a sign of war and attempts to warn the forces in Hawaii. Forced to communicate via commercial telegraph, the message would come too late.

    0753 Hours – Japanese commander Mitsuo Fuchida signals to his ship, “to ra, to ra, to ra,” indicating that total surprise has been achieved.

    0755 Hours – The first sighting of Japanese fighters by Commander Logan C. Ramsey on Ford Island. Noticing a low-flying plane, Logan initially believes it to be a US pilot but then notices a bomb being dropped. “AIR RAID ON PEARL HARBOR X THIS IS NOT A DRILL” is transmitted via telegraph from Ford Island. The first bombs strike Wheeler and Hickam.

    0810 Hours – The USS Arizona is the first battleship to be hit. An armor-piercing bomb proves to be fatal. Over 1,100 crewmen are killed in the explosion.

    0819 Hours – The Arizona begins to sink to the bottom of the harbor.

    As we’ve learned through eyewitness accounts and official histories of the attack, the next five hours are chaos for the men stationed at Pearl Harbor. Though they fought back as hard as they could, over 2,400 servicemen died. It didn’t take long for America to respond.
  2. David M

    David M Techphile.

    Nov 25, 2003
    San Francisco Bay
    How do you see a periscope at night? It would have had to be a really bright moon and one would have had to be right near it...within a few hundred yards.

    At 0645 they sink a sub. At 0715 they are advised of the same sub, but decide not to sink it. You can't have both.
  3. mbossman2

    mbossman2 I am, in reality, a moose Staff Member

    Aug 4, 1999
    RTP, NC
    the moon that night was pretty full, the USS Condor was 1-2 miles from the contact
    night periscope sightings were fairly common as the create a phosphorescent glow in their wake
    As to the Ward's attack, according to her log book:
    • 0640 Sighted unidentified submarine 1 point of starboard bow. Sounded general quarters. All engines ahead full, course 125° T. and PGC, 118° PSC.
    • 0645 Commenced firing on submarine. Fired two salvos. Observed second salvo to be direct hit on enemy submarine conning tower.
    • 0645 Commenced depth charge attack.
    • 0646 ceased firing and ceased depth charge attack.
    • 0703 Established sound contact on enemy submarine.
    • 0705 Commenced depth charge attack.
    • 0706 Sighted black oil bubble 300 yards astern.
    • 0706 Ceased depth charge attack.
    the 0645 attack was vindicated in 2002 when a wreckage was discovered with damage consistent in size and location was discovered. The second (~0703) contact is explainable as

    1. there were 5 midget submarines deployed against Pearl Harbor and the Ward was patrolling the defense zone outside of the entrance to the harbor and all 5 midget submarines would have had to transit this area to attempt to penetrate the harbor.
    2. The Ward had just sunk a submarine and her captain and crew were keyed up from the combat action.
    There is no concrete evidence that the Ward destroyed more than 1 submarine that morning.

    As to your comment

    The 0715 notification was to Adm. Kimmel in regards to the Ward's initial contact/attack report from 30 minutes earlier.

    This delay in the Ward's attack report getting to Adm. Kimmel was one of the focal points of the Congressional investigation into the Pearl Harbor attack. The was accusations flying around that had Kimmel 1) been notified in a more timely fashion, 2) taken more aggressive and decisive action and 3) not vacillated, the Pacific fleet would not have been plastered an hour later.
  4. Bob338


    Aug 24, 2003
    I can still tell you exactly where I was and what I was doing at that time. Remember it vividly. Had a fear since I was home alone in a big house and I had no idea where Pearl Harbor was and only a vague idea of Japan. Living on the southern border of the US I had concern the Japanese army would be there shortly traversing through Mexico to get there. Took a few hours to sort that out. My computer was "down" that day so couldn't Google a thing!
    Blaster3 and rjfvillarosa like this.