Sea Skimmer wrote:The problem remains the lack of troops to actually take the island, and as the Japanese never had much bombardment ammunition, or ammo at all frankly, and would have wanted to be ready for a surface action adding lots of ships doesn't add much firepower for land attack in the terms Japan operated. If the Aleutians invasion force was also added and actually made an assault alongside the other troops (only half of whom were even to be an assault force, the rest were like aircraft mechanics and AA gunners) the Japanese odds of actually taking the islands would go way up, but since Japan plainly learned nothing from Wake and had poor intelligence their would be no real reason for them to do this.
THe Aleutions force had two carriers though, its about like adding another fleet carrier to the battle, and more importantly another independent task force. The Japanese would certainly win the naval battle, the Japanese had several other CVLs in play too after all, but an occupation of the islands would kinda remain in doubt.
Japanese advantages like superior range of plane would also remain very difficult to exploit, and Japanese ASW remains pathetic, and while the Mk14 torpedo doesn't really work the Mk10 sure did and a lot of US submarines were in the area/
Right, so I am wondering whether or not Nimitz would still commit his forces to Midway (as he probably would have known about the total combined fleet via intelligence) if a Japanese naval victory would be certain under the OP scenario . If the USA was going to lose the OP scenario wouldn't it have been better for Nimitz to wait for the Japanese finish their attack and withdraw their fleet, then retake the island over risking his carriers in a battle he couldn't realistically hope to win? Or would it still be worth committing them in the hopes of taking at least taking out a couple of Japanese carriers and trying to mess up the landing even if potentially meant the USA would be down to just the Saratoga after the battle? Would that have still been worth the risk?