July 13, 1945 – News Reports from the Pacific Front – Gordon Walker – Susan Tate – to Mutual – Gordon Skene Sound Collection –
July 13, 1945 – Several reports were filed, all intended to be broadcast by Mutual throughout the day. Starting with a report, finally released over a month after it took place due to censorship, of a Typhoon which swept across the Pacific and slammed into the Fifth Fleet just off Okinawa. The Typhoon, later named Connie, took the fleet by surprise, having been spotted but also drifting away from danger, it was at first thought. As storms in the Pacific were known to be unpredictable, the Typhoon changed course and the eye of the storm slammed into the fleet, full strength during the pre-dawn hours of July 5th. The fleet was caught off-guard and had no time to prepare for the 100-120 mile an hour winds and over 100 foot waves. Four ships were badly damaged, heavy cruiser USS Pittsburgh lost her bow and two other cruisers suffered frame damage. All the fleet carriers suffered flight deck damage, while USS Belleau Wood also lost an elevator. The destroyers rode out the storm rather well, only USS Samuel N. Moore suffering major superstructure damage. In the refueling group, escort carriers USS Windham Bay and USS Salamaua lost part of their flight decks and tanker USS Millicoma suffered severe topside damage. One officer and five men were lost or killed, with another four seriously injured. Storm damage wrecked 43 planes and another 33 were washed overboard.
In other reports; speculation on the upcoming invasion of the home islands of Japan and thoughts on whether the defeat of Japan would be best accomplished from the air, rather than a long and costly and invasion. Other reports included the tightening of the embargo of ships to Japan from China carrying foodstuffs to relieve the worsening food shortages.
The reports when switch over to Susan Tate, reporting from Manila on behalf of the Red Cross. Of interest is an interview with the Filipino film star Corazon Noble, who was witness to a massacre of Filipino civilians by Japanese troops during the battle of Manila. Noble’s husband, child and other relatives were murdered and Noble herself was tortured and stabbed by bayonet several times before Allied troops arrived. She would later testify at the Japanese war crimes tribunal regarding the occupation of The Philippines during the war.
And that’s a small chunk of news as it was taking place in the Pacific region for July 13, 1945.
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