Saturday, August 10, 2013


This is coolbert:

The third in the class of the Japanese super-battleship from that era of the Second World War the hull as laid down in the years just prior to Pearl Harbor and 7 December 1941 also a victim of combat ON THE MAIDEN VOYAGE, NOT SURVIVING EVEN A FULL DAY AT SEA!

IJN Shinano NOT taking to sea as a battleship, rather as an aircraft carrier of rather dubious utility and usefulness!

From the book "A GLORIOUS WAY TO DIE" by Russell Spurr.

"The battleship's demise was finally recognized in the decision to convert the half-built Shinano into an aircraft carrier. Her hull was completed up to the weather deck when the Japanese navy lost the decisive carrier battle at Midway. Valuable time was wasted while the planner haggled over conversion plans. The eventual compromise produced what was in effect an enormous carrier-support ship. The 70,755-ton hybrid boasted an armored deck, enormous fuel and ammunition storage, but only 47 aircraft for her own defense."

Please be aware that no good close-up images of the Shinano even exist. Such was the secrecy surrounding the construction and the initial sailing and sinking of the vessel photographic evidence of the warship as they exist very scant!

 "The ill-conceived project did not survive 24 hours at sea [my emphasis]. While transiting from the building yard at Yokosuka for further outfitting in Kure on November 29, 1944 Shinano was waylaid by the U.S. submarine Archerfish, whose commander fired six torpedoes in the dark at his large, zigzagging target and dived to escape counterattack. All he heard was loud explosions as the torpex warheads hit home, enough to claim an important but unidentified kill."

Shinano was a monstrosity that amount of time, energy, resources, effort could have been much better applied in a variety of other and more meaningful directions.

Indeed, it can be suggested that the ship was jinxed from the start, doomed. EVEN BEFORE THAT MAIDEN VOYAGE THE SHIP WHEN LAUNCHED SUSTAINING DAMAGE. A BAD OMEN IF THERE EVER WAS ONE:

"Shinano's launch on 8 October 1944, with Captain Toshio Abe in command, was marred by what some considered an ill-omened accident. During the floating-out procedure, one of the caissons at the end of the dock unexpectedly lifted as the water rose to the level of the harbor (no one had checked to ensure that all the caissons were properly ballasted with seawater). The sudden inrush of water into the graving dock pushed the carrier into the forward end, damaging the bow structure below the waterline and necessitating another dry-dock for repairs"

The warship not even complete but sunk while in transit "for further outfitting".

On top of it all and perhaps even more so, the humiliation most acute.


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