Part 70: Operational Report: 14/02/42
Task Force 111 runs into a small troop transport convoy, and as they scatter, the larger ships makes short work of the freighters. The Caledon takes several hits from the light weapons of the Daigen Maru, but none do much damage to the heavily armoured cruiser.
They then run into a much larger force of small transport ships. For the second time in two days the Japanese merchantmen have to face the might of the British and Dutch fleets in the Java sea unescoted.
But when they find their third group of the night, things go wrong, and a fantastically brave attack by the Japanese Navy destroyer Sazanami puts two torpedoes into the side of the Caledon in quick succession, and the crew are soon forced to abandon ship from the damage.
The rest of the fleet gets their revenge, and the Sazanami soon follows her to the bottom.
Near to dawn, the remains of the force come across another force, taking no chances this time, and they concentrate their fire on the warships, sinking them before they can inflict any damage.
South of Batavia, the Dutch sub KVII comes under attack from Japanese destroyers, she takes some damage, but manages to escape.
After that, a number of freighters in Bandjermasin are unable to stop a vengeful task force from wrecking them at anchor.
Later in the day, the enemy launch their first attack out of Bandjermasin, targeting and finishing off the Indomitable with a final torpedo hit.
Our Hudson bombers get a hit on a troop transport that TF111 missed, but lose a plane doing so.
The Swordfish take out a wounded ship as well.
There is a larger raid on Soerabaja, sinking both of our mine layers in the area.
There are more carriers in the area, and they strike the harbour as well.
I fact, the Java area has become somewhat dangerous, as the Iron Baron is sunk by long range torpedo bombers.
The Swordfish gets a solid hit on a freighter off the Coast of Japan.
Changsha suffers its heaviest bombardment yet today, as it seems that the enemy has reinforced their squadrons in the area.
At Pucheng, our shock attack has much more effect than the deliberate attacks of the previous few days.
South at Chuhsien, things go even better as we drive the enemy back with heavy losses. Its been a good day in China today.
Finally, we manage to get a confirmed hit on one of the enemies big tankers, as the S-38 hunts off the south of the Philippines.
The first air attack on Rangoon in over a week is met by a huge number of planes, and nearly half of the enemy planes fail to return home.
See you next week guys, when you've replaced those planes!
That was a fairly up and down day, the slaughtering of Japanese transports was soured somewhat by the loss of two valuable ships.
Why the cruiser Oi is on there I don't know, but if its true, then I'll take it.
I am ordering a General Evacuation of all forces from Java. Its has now become untenable to hold the area.
There are just to many enemy ships in the area to allow us to hold them off, and now that the port is in range of their land based bombers, its no longer safe to allow any ship to dock.
All warships capable of sailing have been ordered to Darwin. Unfortunately we don't have the cargo ships in the area to move the troops on the ground, but I'm trying to get out the Hurricane squadrons and other modern planes.
The Invasion force is head out.
God save their souls, lets hope my planning goes better than at Luganville....