The possibility that China’s submarine force would adopt a focused strategy of attacking transport nodes cannot be ruled out—something Japan failed to do in World War II.
Lyle J. Goldstein
July 17, 2015
As the 70th anniversary of the ending of the bloody Pacific War looms in August , many Chinese scholars will no doubt be writing about Tokyo’s wartime atrocities and perceived post-war failures to reckon with grave misdeeds in China and elsewhere. But among Chinese naval analyst, the focus is quite different. They are not particularly interested in Japan’s war against China, but rather have taken up a different theme: a special issue of the March 2015 edition of 现代舰船 [Modern Ships] probes in detail the failures of Japanese naval strategy during the Pacific War.
TNI readers understand well that the last naval battles undertaken among the fleets of the great powers occurred during World War II , so that China’s lessons from that massive conflict are hardly of simple academic interest. In order to divine these lessons, which could well influence contemporary Chinese naval strategy, this edition of Dragon Eye will probe one Chinese article from this interesting series that takes as its focus the strategy and employment of Imperial Japan’s submarine fleet in the Pacific War. The conclusion of this analysis is not difficult to discern. Indeed, the article’s title asks whether or not Japanese submarine strategy was a “巨大的错误”[huge mistake]. The overall conclusion is that Japanese submarines failed to take advantage of the “soft rib” of the U.S. armed forces by the method of “破交” [attacking transport nodes].