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Defenders of the Deep

Autor:   •  February 9, 2019  •  1,435 Words (6 Pages)  •  561 Views

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they hear another ship’s engineering plant or other noise, they can identify, track and target it. “This ‘acoustic cat-and-mouse game’ works both ways. Running silent helps a boat evade detection. Slowing to a crawl quiets noise from the propulsion machinery” (Holmes). Underwater crafts are loners for the most part. Surface tactics are about concentrating firepower at decisive places on the map to overwhelm an opponent. Communicating with fellow boats increases the dangers of detection, as does the very act of traveling in groups. While navies sometimes assign submarines to surface task groups, turning them loose in the depths remains the best way to prosecute undersea warfare (Holmes). Submarines, though only about two percent of the U.S. Navy, destroyed over thirty percent of the Japanese Navy, including eight aircraft carriers, one battleship and eleven cruisers (Schultz). Although there are many reasons for the success of submersibles, the element of surprise is distinctly the most important.

Without the implementation of subaquatic warfare, the Pacific War could have been a tragic failure for the United States Navy. Throughout the war, the tactics of sea denial became increasingly effective and could not have been carried out without the aid of submarine warfare. "Had it not been for the magnificent job done by our submarines, there is no doubt in my mind that the war with Japan would still be going on." - Admiral Raymond Spruance (Friedman). The emergence of new technologies, the ability to utilize the ocean in a radically different manner, and the element of surprise, all added up to an approach to ocean combat that revolutionized naval warfare and dramatically altered the outcome of the Pacific War and World War II.

Works Cited

Friedman, Hal M. “The quiet warrior back in Newport: Admiral Spruance, the return to the Naval War College, and the lessons of the Pacific War, 1946-1947.” Naval War College Review, Spring 2011, p. 116+. General OneFile, Accessed 11 Apr. 2017.

Gochenour, Phil. “The Technology of War.” Science and Its Times, edited by Neil Schlager and Josh Lauer, vol. 6: 1900 to 1949, Gale, 2000, pp. 569-574. Global Issues in Context, Accessed 11 Apr. 2017.

Holmes, James. “Hail to the deep.” The National Interest, no. 132, 2014, p. 67+. General OneFile, Accessed 11 Apr. 2017.

Meigs, Montgomery C. Slide Rules and Submarines: American Scientists and Subsurface Warfare in World War II. Honolulu, UP of the Pacific, 2002. Google,

Schultz, Robert, and James Shell. “Strange fortune: an American sub at the Battle of Midway finds that luck can be a powerful weapon.” World War II, May-June 2010, p. 58+. General OneFile, Accessed 23 Apr. 2017.

“Submarine Warfare.” International Military and Defense Encyclopedia, edited by Trevor N. Dupuy, Macmillan Reference USA, 1993. U.S. History In Context, Accessed 23 Apr. 2017.

United States, Congress, House, Office of Naval Intelligence. Notes on Anti-Submarine Defenses. Government Printing Office, 1972. Naval History and Heritage Command, Accessed 25 Apr. 2017. House Document 8.

House, Naval History and Heritage Command. Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz. Government Printing Office. Naval History and Heritage Command, Accessed 10 Apr. 2017.

House, Naval History Division. United States Submarine Losses. Government Printing Office. Naval History and Heritage Command, Accessed 10 Apr. 2017.


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