Part 15: Operational Report: 21/12/41
The Argonaut attacks a freighter, after two dud torpedoes it surfaces and uses its guns and another torpedo to leave the freighter burning. It seems that the captains are getting increasingly annoyed with their faulty ordinance and are getting a little direct about it.
In the sky, the relentless bombing of Chinese forces continues, this is no where near as large scale as in the Philippines or at Wake, but its enough to disrupt several units.
On the ground the Chinese army has its first real success in a while, stopping a Japanese attack cold at some place known as Wenchow.
This luck is then reversed as the Japs assault Chengchow and capture the city.
But we are not on the retreat in every area of China, we launch one attack that meets with stunning success. It may not be for a base or anything of any real value, but it is a small reversal for the enemy.
Another day for the CAP over Manilla. This time they shoot down three enemy planes for the loss of three of their own. At least they haven't given up and surrendered yet.
Over Rangoon the daily bomber shoot continues. This time they only managed to bag one plane.
Despite being outnumbered two to one, the defenders at Rabaul manage to hold on for another day, causing heavy casualties on the attacking forces there.
Fight on brave soldiers!
A Quiet day on the front here. This seems to be the calm before the storm, I'm expecting the Japanese to do something any time now.
Our air losses have been heavy, with some planes destroyed on the ground at Wake and Manilla. But there have been no ship losses on our side, and we added another sunk transport to our list.
The Japanese forces in Malaya are getting reinforced soon, as are their troops in the southern Philippines.
The time has come to think about offensive moves, I've ordered the 19th regiment out of Pearl and down to Fiji. Here they will wait until we are ready to plan a major attack. They can also be used to shore up any holes that form in our lines.
About the only other thing of note I do is form another cruiser task force to go raiding around the north seas of Borneo.
The Dutch cruisers will be moving up tomorrow, just as the British cruisers return to port to rearm. If the enemy give us the opportunity I would love to continue these raids for as long as possible, they are being extremely effective, and we have yet to lose a ship from them while inflicting heavy losses on the enemy.
I'm not going to risk the Repulse, she's slower and a much more valuable target. She will remain my ace in the hole until needed.
It seems that the Captain of the Prince of Wales seems to have decided to take his ship off to Cape Town on his own, I was sure I ordered him to seek repairs before doing so, but so far he reports not taking on any more water, and he has managed to actually pump some of the accumulated water. This leaves me confident the battleship will make port for repairs.
As long as she doesn't run into another sub along the way.
A good number of troops are now on their way to Port Moresby, so I order up supplies to follow them. I also move two newly arrived squadrons of dive bombers up there, where they can start to make themselves useful.