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"U.S.S. Allen M. Sumner DD-692" Topic

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Tango0101 Dec 2020 9:45 p.m. PST

"Ormoc Bay was to be the bloody baptism of fire for the Navy's new Sumner-class destroyers.

One of the fiercest – and most pivotal – battles of the Pacific War is also one of the least known. It was, in fact the only naval engagement of the war in which the enemy unleashed the full fury of shore, sea-based, air, and undersea weapons all in one short, desperate action. But history has barely taken notice. The reason: No capital ships took part on either side, so there were no war correspondents to file breathless accounts of momentous angst and travail. But it was a deciding battle nevertheless. And several battle-scarred officers who witnessed it described it as an all-out slugfest befitting a Hollywood version of war in the Pacific.

Picture the situation for the Japanese at the time. It's November 1944. MacArthur's troops have landed and secured a toe-hold on the eastern half of Leyte in the Philippines. The greatest naval battle of all time, the Battle of Leyte Gulf, took place one month previously with the loss of four Jap carriers, three battleships, nine cruisers and nine destroyers. This historic battle was fought to give the Allies control of the seas and seal the fate of the 23,000 Japanese troops on Leyte. But this didn't happen. Instead, the enemy continued to resupply Leyte garrisons through their port of Ormoc on the western side of the island. In fact, one month after the great battle, Jap strength on Leyte more than doubled – to 55,000 men…"
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