Wednesday, November 20, 2019

A Note From The Past

MON 20 NOV 1944
Heavy cruiser Augusta (CA-31) is damaged by explosion of unknown origin, Boston Navy Yard.

Oiler Mississinewa (AO-59) is sunk by kaiten (fired by Japanese submarine I-47 or I-36) Ulithi, 10°06'N, 139°43'E.
Allegedly the first successful kaiten attack. YouTube comment, slightly edited:
My ship the USS Nemasket AOG 10, was the last ship that was loaded with Aviation Gas from the Mississinewa that day when we were tied up alongside her, when the Capt. of the Mississinewa informed our captain Dandrew, that we could remain tied up to her for the night and go back to our anchorage in the morning, our Cap't. decided that since we had enough daylight, that he would rather leave and go to our assigned anchorage. That turned out to be a most fortunate decision for us for had we stayed tied alongside the Mississinewa our ship also would have been blown up as well. I remember when the GQ sounded early that morning as I was sleeping in my bunk. I quickly responded and climbed up through my hatch from the crews quarters located in the aft of the ship, when I saw the heavy black smoke coming from the USS Mississinewa. As I was running to my 20 MM gun position located at the starboard side of the bridge I was looking at the sky thinking that we were under an air attack. However, when I got to my phone I was informed that some 2 man Japanese subs broke thru the nets and torpedoed the Mississinewa. We then learned that the sub launched a suicide manned torpedo. As daylight grew brighter I suddenly spotted a periscope appear nearby my ship, it was so close that if I had a lasso I could have easily got it around the periscope. Unfortunately, our 20 MM guns could not be lowered down that far and dropping depth charges would be too close to our ship as well. Later, I heard that our PBY plane dropped a bomb and sunk the sub as it was trying to find its way out of the area. Our crew felt saddened for the crew of the Mississinewa but was relieved in knowing that had our captain decided to stay tied up to the AO 59 we would not be here to tell this story.
— Barney Leone MoMM2/c
Japanese planes attack three U.S. tankers proceeding from Ulithi to Eniwetok, near-misses and strafing account for damage to tanker Fort Dearborn at 12°00'N, 155°00'E. There are, however, only four men wounded among the ship's 50-man merchant complement, 27-man Armed Guard and five passengers.

Submarine Atule (SS-403) sinks Japanese minesweeper W.38 southwest of Formosa, 21°21'N, 119°45'E.

Submarine Gar (SS-206) lands supplies on north coast of Mindoro.

British submarine HMS Tally Ho sinks Japanese auxiliary minesweeper Ma 4 30 miles east of the southern tip of Great Nicobar Island, 06°55'N, 94°15'E.

USAAF B-25 (14th Air Force) sinks Japanese merchant cargo ship Daichi Maru in Yangtze River northeast of Shanghai, China, 31°57'N, 122°18'E.

USAAF B-25s sink Japanese ship No.79 Nany_ [sic] Maru off Timor.

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