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"The Fate of Battleship KONGO: A Research Odyssey" Topic


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471 hits since 8 Feb 2018
©1994-2018 Bill Armintrout
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Tango0108 Feb 2018 9:54 p.m. PST

"In my time since starting to post these mysteries and studies, one of the most-asked about and requested (understandably) has been the mystery surrounding the explosion and sinking of battleship KONGO. This is appropriate, because as it turns out, next to the similar vague detail of UNRYU's loss, the KONGO was my number-one Japanese Navy mystery, and indeed, these two ships were the catalyst for me to embark on a serious fresh research of the sources. Like many of us, I had grown accustomed through the years of studying over and over again the available books and articles, and always holding out hope for a new good study and (instantly buying them) on the IJN as they came out. These were few and far between in the late 70's and 80's, and the pickings remained slim. Regarding KONGO, after an initial bit of data, almost nothing ever was added (in English at least) and I fully shared the wish to know more.


In addition I have received several inquiries regarding my unpublished book manuscript "Total Eclipse" about the 1944/45 period of the IJN and samples of the work. Since it contains the KONGO's loss as derived from Japanese sources in detail it seems appropriate to `kill two birds with one stone' and present an excerpt from the pertinent Leyte campaign chapter. Therefore, both as an introduction to beginning new scholars, and as a nolstagic 'look back" for enthusiasts, I offer this article that shows how a `research knot' can come to exist, and also most of the final solution to `untie' same. In many respects the KONGO story represents the story of the initial generation of IJN works ---- a flagrant gap in the record was presented, and even more suprising, was the almost utter lack of notice that there was a mystery involved…"
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