Part 12: Operational Report: 18/12/41
KXVII continues its reign of terror off the coast of Vietnam.
The sub leaves the fuel cargo burning and the ship destined for the bottom of the ocean. But her next target is much sweeter, a large converted passenger liner, most likely packed with troops several figures were seen falling into the water after the explosion.
In the sky over, Changsha is bombed, although some fighters get into the air, they are fairly ineffective, but are better than nothing.
We suffer a number of reversals in China today, loosing two bases, although the second one at Chuhsien does cost the Japanese heavily.
At Finschhafen , the cruisers out of Port Moresby get the drop on the unloading and unprotected transports.
while none are reported sunk, three ships are reported hit and burning by the time they manage to escape into the night. But their escape is short lived, and the taskforce soon catches up with them.
That's one enemy landing force that will not be bothering us again. And with that we buy ourselves more time to defend Port Moresby.
Rabaul is bombed heavily today, maybe in response to last nights fleet operations. And a cargo ship rushing supplies to Port Moresby is torpedoed.
We need to increase the anti-submarine patrols around Pearl harbour, this ship was hit almost within sight of the harbour itself!
A Japanese raid hits a supply convoy coming into Rangoon. This is going to have to be the last sea convoy to the area, it would be to costly in shipping. A second attack later in the day is in range of fighters from Rangoon, and they shoot down three of the Sally bombers in revenge.
Another 21 Japanese planes destroyed on the field I know Intelligence need to cut corners somewhere, but it seems odd. I'm still assuming that's another large bomber squadron or two smaller ones going down with a ship. If so, then that great news.
More support for Rabaul is planned. They really want that base.
After their successful raid last night, I've ordered the cruisers back, this time to Rabaul to try and help them out there.
Near Borneo, the other two raiding taskforces are given their orders to attack as well.
One is moving on each of those docked fleets. Hopefully this will be bloody tomorrow.
I skip this area in the combat breifing, as its more of the same, the airfields and ports are being hammered by large sorties of bombers, and there is little in the way of CAP going up.
As you can see, we are loosing land rapidly. The 91st PA division has no supplies and less than 3,000 men in Cabanataun, and with an estimated 2 enemy units in the area, the last line before Manilla will not hold for the long.
I've ordered all the subs to rebase to Soerabaja, from there we can continue the attack on the enemy, its still close enough to get them into range of Japan, Sidney or Pearl are to far for decent operations.
The fighter squadrons are decimated, only 7 planes are available to cover the area.