Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Tuesday Talking Points/Book Review

Hello all. We have a book review for today that I will get to in just a minute. But first a quick in real life update.  

So three weeks ago, this happened:

Dumbass in a mid size import decided the turning lane was a good place to try and merge into the travel lane. Grrrr. Finally got that all wrapped up just yesterday. Progressive can choke on a bag full of dicks. 

But hey, I got a set of new tires and enough loss of use money to finish my Gucci AR. So there is that.

And then two weeks, ago Jackie started feeling kinda cruddy. After two days, she took a test and came back positive for Covid. As did I. She's still a little under the weather but not too bad. I'm completely asymptomatic. 

Alrighty and now to our regularly scheduled Tsundoku Tuesday.

So, for some reason, in the Navy aviators historically wear brown shoes. And surface officers wear black shoes. And SEALs wear flippers. (pause for laughter)

Generally Carrier Task Groups, and by law Carriers, are commanded by aviators. But, in the early days of World War Two, Admiral Frank Jack Fletcher, a black shoe, commanded a carrier task force in the first three carrier versus carrier engagements of the war. 

And did remarkably well, in my opinion. Which is also the opinion of John Lundstrom in his terrific work about the Admiral. Cool fun fact: Admiral Fletcher received the Medal of Honor at Veracruz, while fighting with the Marines. So I guess it makes sense that the destroyer skipper might wind up fighting carrier battles.

Coral Sea was strategic victory but minor tactical defeat. Midway might be the greatest Naval battle of all time. And The Battle of Eastern Solomons...is murky. Baby Marines are ed a steady diet of how the Navy carriers left them and that has entered the commonly accepted pop history of the battle. And Admiral Fletcher is generally regarded as the guy who ran.

All of which is damn near false. The Admiral got a bum rap. John Lundstrom makes quite he case for Admiral Fletcher. And does it in a way that almost reads like a Barrett Tillman novel. 

Five out Five longnecks. 


  1. Intel is, as always, king of the battlespace, wherever it may be... Those with the best intel can plan and act with more confidence. The battle mentioned was effectively a stalemate, and both forces withdrew, not sure even after the battle what really happened.

  2. Hey Mack;

    Glad you are feeling fine, and will read that book one day, once I snag it off you ;) Admiral Fletcher got a raw deal and the Marines had a better PR dept than all the other services combined.


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