Sentence of the Day, TLSOTTCS

Sorry, self just got so tired of writing the whole title out. Incidentally, the author, James D. Hornfischer, was a resident of Austin, TX and passed away just this past June.

In this excellent book, self learns that the US Navy was under the impression that they had destroyed the main Japanese navy at Surigao Strait. They didn’t know that the Japanese attack was two-pronged: the main force had snuck into the archipelago through the San Bernardino Strait, completely unchallenged. If not for the sighting by Ensign Bill Brooks, just minutes before contact was made, the Americans would have been caught completely flat-footed. In fact, the crew were mostly engaged with having breakfast and folding laundry. Then, someone spotted masts over the horizon. A gunnery officer, known for having “an especially sharp eye for ship silhouettes,” was called to the deck of the USS Roberts. The officer said he was certain that “the mystery ships on the horizon belonged to Imperial Japan.” His captain at first thought that these enemy ships were the survivors straggling from their defeat at Surigao Strait the day before.

Sentence of the Day, p. 149:

  • The revelation that the enemy was not fleeing but advancing had the surreal quality of a dream.

When the shelling began, some officers were still wearing their sleep attire: slippers, chinos, and a T-shirt.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

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