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Found 5 results

  1. Snargfargle

    Operation Killer Whale (Part 8)

    CLASSIFIED -- SENSITIVE COMPARTMENTALIZED INFORMATION -- CLASSIFIED TOP SECRET (CODE WORD: ZED) Excerpts from the log of Captain S. N. Argfargle, USN Commodore, Task Force Ishmael Operation Killer Whale Citation: Task Force Ishmael For gallantry, determination, and esprit de corps in accomplishing its mission under extremely difficult and hazardous conditions, the Presidential Unit Citation is awarded to the ships and crews of Task Force Ishmael. Citation: Marine reconnaissance team, USS Arizona. The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting the Silver Star Medal and the Purple Heart Medal to each of the Marines of the reconnaissance team, USS Arizona. Facing overwhelming odds and fully cognizant of the dangers involved, the reconnaissance team, to a man, volunteered to accompany the USS Arizona's Chief of Intelligence into enemy territory to retrieve information vital to the war effort. Fighting hand-to-hand against overwhelming numbers of [REDACTED] the team enabled the successful completion of the mission at the expense of their own lives. Their actions keep with the highest standards of selfless service and reflect great credit upon themselves, the United States Marine Corps, and the U.S. Naval Service. Citation: Captain Seymour Nathaniel Argfargle Showing extraordinary heroism in action while serving as commodore of Task Force Ismael, Captain Seymour Nathaniel Argfargle, at extreme risk to his own life, fought hand-to-hand against numerous [REDACTED] in order to secure his ships log and other intelligence vital to the war effort. Furthermore, even as his ship was being overtaken by [REDACTED] Captain Argfargle remained in communication with the ships of his command, directing operations against the enemy. His final act before he abandoned his flagship was to order its destruction, thus preventing the spread of the [REDACTED] plague. By his outstanding display of decisive leadership, unlimited courage in the face of [REDACTED], and utmost dedication to duty, Captain Argfargle reflected great credit upon himself, upheld the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service, and is hereby awarded the Navy Cross. Citation: Commander James Edward Taggert Showing conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as a military intelligence officer stationed aboard the USS Arizona and fully aware of the extreme danger in involved, Commander James Edward Taggert volunteered to lead a platoon of marines into enemy-held territory to recover information vital to the war effort. Not only did he successfully locate the relevant intelligence while facing [REDACTED] at every turn, when his platoon had been themselves turned into [REDACTED], Commander Taggert personally fought hand-to-hand against overwhelming numbers of [REDACTED] and completed the mission alone. Furthermore, after he returned to the ship, which was under attack at the time by more [REDACTED], knowing that he had contracted the [REDACTED] plague, he gave his own life in order to to save the life of his commanding officer. Commander Taggert's exceptionally valiant action and selfless devotion to both mission and shipmates sustain and enhance the highest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service and he is hereby awarded the Medal of Honor. POSTSCRIPT The war had been over for a year. The Japanese were defeated and their homeland occupied. However, efforts were being made to treat them with dignity and to restore their decimated civilian society, for they had been as much victims of their military powers as had our soldiers. It was everyone's hope that, in time, former enemies would become staunch allies. Several ships encircled the island on which the Japanese research station had once stood, though they kept a great distance. None of the combatants in the war had ever tried to re-occupy this island. If the official quarantine orders did not keep people away then the rumors did. The island was rumored to be a place of death, inhabited only by monsters. Those who had fought there knew that the rumors were not false. High in the air, the drone of a flight of B-29 bombers could be heard. Rear Admiral S. N. Argfargle donned his smoked goggles and peered toward the island. A countdown was broadcast and when it reached zero a massive fireball enveloped the island. The fireball then subsided, revealing an enormous mushroom cloud that towered into the sky. The atomic “test” had been a success. Headlines: "RAAF Captures Flying Saucer On Ranch in Roswell Region" -- Roswell Daily Record, Tuesday, July 8, 1947 "Bikini Atoll is still uninhabitable: Radiation on island exceeds safety standards nearly 60 years after nuclear tests." – The Daily Mail, June 7, 2006 POST-POSTSCRIPT For three quarters of a century a Japanese midget submarine had rested at the top of a seamount, just above its crush depth and precariously balanced over a crevasse that was thousands of feet deep. The team of oceanographers from the Scripps Institute who discovered it via magnetometer in an undersea survey also sent down a remote vehicle to investigate the wreck. They reported back that the sub had remained remarkably intact and was a good candidate for salvage. A research ship was dispatched to recover the submarine because there were very few representatives of this type still in good condition. The small submarine was raised uneventfully and lowered to the deck of the research ship. However, as it was set down one of the graduate students told her advisor that she could have sworn that she had heard something moving inside. “Don't be daft,” was the reply “that ship has had no oxygen in it for 75 years.” “I still swear that I heard something moving inside,” the graduate student said. However, nobody listened to her. The submarine was transported to San Diego, where its hatch would first be opened at a large gathering of Institute supporters. An old photo found in a footlocker stored in a WWII veteran's attic. The strange object near the Wildcat remains unidentified.
  2. Snargfargle

    Operation Killer Whale (Part 7)

    CLASSIFIED -- SENSITIVE COMPARTMENTALIZED INFORMATION -- CLASSIFIED TOP SECRET (CODE WORD: ZED) Excerpts from the log of Captain S. N. Argfargle, USN Commodore, Task Force Ishmael Operation Killer Whale Though burning, the horde of zonbi still clambered after the Japanese captain as he shinnied his way to the very top of the radio mast, kicking at them in an attempt to keep them at bay. He then pointed the signal lamp at the Dewey and sent a message. The message was in Japanese but it was relayed to the Japanese-speaking sailor on the Arizona who interpreted it. “Americans! Do not let transports leave harbor! Plague will spread!” Just as the captain had sent the message the radio mast toppled and he fell into the teeming throng of burning zonbi. At the same time, the crews of the American destroyers saw that the five transports were, indeed, powered up and making their way out of the harbor. While the military had maintained strict discipline, apparently there were enough civilians on the transports to take them over and try to sail for other parts, in an attempt to save their own skins. I requested Commander Taggert take down a written message that would be sent to the Dewey for relay to the transports by signal lamp and semaphore. At the same time, our Japanese-speaking sailor was trying to contact them over the radio. The message was simple: “Return to your mooring area or you will be fired upon!" The message was repeated, and repeated again. However, from the enemy transports there was no reply and they continued on their course, even when warning shots were fired across their bows. “Well,” I thought, “They've had enough warning.” If a Japanese captain himself told us not to let the transports leave the harbor and this was an objective of our mission at the island anyway, then so be it. I gave the order for the two destroyers to sink the unarmed transports and they were quickly sent to the bottom. The Dewy then entered the area to look for survivors, but the sea was eerily quiet. Then, suddenly, several survivors popped to the surface. The crew of the Dewey thought it strange that none were wearing life vests. Even more strange was the way that thrashed and flailed about. However, they were sailors and were in need of rescue. It was difficult for the boat crews to get them on board though because they were fighting and biting like madmen. Several of the boat crews had to be taken to the infirmary so badly had they been mauled by the transport ship survivors, who themselves were locked in a supply closet with a guard placed outside. I ordered the more seriously injured of the Dewy's crew transferred to the Arizona, for we had more comprehensive medical facilities than did the destroyer. In hindsight I curse my orders for this was the action that sealed the fate of my ship and its fine crew. I, however, could not know this at the time. Even so, it's a decision that will haunt me for the rest of my days. Whether those days will be many or few will be determined shortly. I'm going to be brief here as my full report will have to wait for a classified intelligence debriefing. Suffice it to say that the “plague” that the Japanese captain messaged us about spread through the Dewey and then the Arizona like wildfire. By the time we realized what was happening, the entire crew of the Dewey had been transformed into snarling, biting horrors. I radioed that the destroyer should be sunk by the Farragut, and it quickly was as soon as the Farragut's captain got in close enough to see what had become of the Dewy's crew. On the Arizona the situation was becoming dire. Each time a crew member was bitten it would be only a few minutes to an hour or so before he then became aggressive and began to bite others. Arms were distributed but they seemed to have no effect on the zonbi, until one lucky shot landed in the center of the forehead of a mutation and it fell to the deck. However there were more infected crew than bullets and the plague continued to spread. I gave orders for the rest of the task force to remain away from the Arizona until such a time as we had gotten the plague under control. My Chief of Intelligence, Commander Taggert, came up to me and said, “Sir! Permission to take a platoon of marines ashore to investigate the research station?” I said, “Permission granted, godspeed” as it couldn't be much more dangerous on shore than on the ship now and retrieving intelligence was our primary mission. Perhaps he could find information about the source of this plague and, perhaps more importantly to the war effort, just how the Japanese were able to develop those powerful aircraft. I longed to be able to examine those aircraft for myself but the deck of the Japanese carrier was aswarm with hundreds of zonbi. After three hours, Commander Taggert returned to the ship alone. He handed me a satchel containing a thick ream of papers he had recovered from the research station and said “It's all in there sir, I'd tell you all about it but you will have to read it for yourself, I don't have the time left.” A strange look then came over his face and his jaws begin to snap. However, with sheer force of will he shook it off. He pulled his notebook from his pocket and said "My report is here, sir. Don't attempt to go onshore, as there's nothing human left there anymore. Just make sure that you destroy both the research station and the carrier before you leave this place because they contain the source of the plague.” His jaws began to snap again but, once again, through sheer force of will he stopped them. He then raised his arm, showed me the bite on it and calmly walked to railing. There, he pulled out his .45, and shot himself in the head, his body falling into the sea. If I survive this I'm going to recommend him for the Medal of Honor. I had known Jim for years. I had been his commanding officer in Naval Intelligence, when he was an ensign fresh out of Annapolis. I'd even been the best man at his wedding. He had kept joking with me over the years that he would be the best man at mine but we both knew that would never be; the sea service was my mistress. But Jim was no more. This whole thing is going to be so classified that his wife and kids may never know just what he sacrificed for humanity. We continued to try to quell the plague on the Arizona but finally there was nobody left human but me. I fought my way to my stateroom to get the ship's log and jammed it into the satchel with the research papers and Commander Taggert's notebook. After which I found a raincoat in a storage locker, wrapped the whole thing up nice and watertight, and tied it to a life vest. I returned to the bridge and radioed the Independence, designating its captain as the new task force commander, and telling him about the information the satchel contained with orders to send a plane to the area to spot it and recover it at all costs. My last order as commodore was to direct the task force to destroy the onshore facilities, especially the research station, and forts. After which they were to sink all of the remaining Japanese ships. Finally, I ordered them to sink the Arizona and to not pick up any apparent "survivors" other than me I fought my way to the railing, flung the waterproofed satchel out as far as I could, and then jumped overboard and swam out to retrieve it. Just as I'd done so the first shells hit the Arizona and I watched as she went down. Eventually I was spotted by a plane from the Independence, who threw me a life raft, more to see if I was still human enough to swim toward it and use it than to preserve my life per se. When it was determined that I was still human I finally was rescued by a boat crew from the Cleveland. The captain of the Cleveland quickly assured me that none of the remaining ships had any contact with the infected and their crews were all clean. I gave orders for the task force to rendezvous with the carrier group as soon as the onshore facilities had been destroyed and the Japanese ships sunk. I then asked to be assigned a marine officer as an aide and retired to a stateroom to write this log entry. I have finished my log entry. I now sit at my desk and stare at the small cut on my wrist. Did I scrape it on something? Or did a zonbi bite me? It won't be long now before the question is answered. Nobody had ever remained human for much more than three hours after a zonbi bite and my time was nearly up. I have handcuffed myself to the desk and given my .45 to the Marine captain. He knows what to do should I start to change.
  3. Snargfargle

    Operation Killer Whale (Part 6)

    CLASSIFIED -- SENSITIVE COMPARTMENTALIZED INFORMATION -- CLASSIFIED TOP SECRET (CODE WORD: ZED) Excerpts from the log of Captain S. N. Argfargle, USN Commodore, Task Force Ishmael Operation Killer Whale The Japanese planes made two strafing runs and then returned to the carrier. As enormously fast and powerful as the strange-looking planes were, they also apparently had a very short-duration fuel capacity. The Americans continued the attack on the zonbi and then the squadron commander thought, “Well, since we are here anyway, and those Japanese fighters seem busy refueling, perhaps a couple of our bombs could “accidentally” take out the communications towers.” However, just as this thought crossed his mind, the towers were taken out by two salvos of shells from the guns of the inner harbor forts. Someone on the Japanese side didn't want word of this incident getting out. The American squadron commander then radioed the task force. “We have joined the Japanese in an attack on a mutual enemy. The Japanese call them “zonbi.” I don't know exactly what they are but there are hordes of them and they are destroying everything in their path. Send in recon planes in a low-level pass to collect specific intelligence on the threat. The recon planes will not be attacked by the Japanese. I say again, the recon planes will not be attacked.” Back at the Independence a message was sent to the Arizona to launch its spotter planes to make a new survey of the island but they might as well have saved their breath. For the commodore, having heard the American squadron's message, had already ordered this. What he saw in the new photos and deduced from the continued chatter of the American fighter and bomber pilots, astounded him. The commodore was quite familiar with the personnel under his command, as any commander should be. Although Commander Taggert could somewhat read Japanese, he wasn't fluent in the language. Fortunately, there was a seaman on the Cleveland who was a third generation descendant of Japanese immigrants but could speak the language fluently as it had been passed down through his family in much the same way as his great-great grandfather's samurai sword had. The Japanese-speaking sailor was brought to the Arizona and a message was sent to the Japanese base, on all frequencies know to be used by the enemy. However, there was no reply. The lack of reply from the carrier bothered the commodore most. Those strange aircraft it carried obviously were the most powerful weapons the Japanese had on the island or they would have brought others to bear in their fight against the zonbi. By this time the Arizona's spotter planes had run low on fuel and had returned, as had the squadrons that had been attacking the zonbi. Fighters therefore were launched from the cruisers to act as spotting aircraft. They reported back that, although their seemed to be a lot of activity on the deck of the Japanese carrier, nobody seemed to be servicing the strange-looking planes, nor did the planes show any signs of attempting to take off. The gunfire from the forts also had fallen silent so the commodore sent the two destroyers into the harbor for a closer look. What they saw astounded them. Although there was a great deal of “activity” on on the shore and on the ships in the harbor, everyone just seemed to be milling around aimlessly. Then suddenly, from a door the bridge of the cruiser, which had once been patrolling the harbor, burst a Japanese officer. In fact, from his uniform it appeared that he was the captain of the ship. The officer began to climb a radio mast, signal lamp in hand. A horde of sailors began clambering after him and he drew his pistol and fired it into the throng before throwing what appeared to be an improvised Molotov cocktail, setting the sailors on fire.
  4. Snargfargle

    Operation Killer Whale (Part 4)

    CLASSIFIED -- SENSITIVE COMPARTMENTALIZED INFORMATION -- CLASSIFIED TOP SECRET (CODE WORD: ZED) Excerpts from the log of Captain S. N. Argfargle, USN Commodore, Task Force Ishmael Operation Killer Whale I'm nearing the end of my career. In fact, if it were it not for the war, the Navy would probably have already retired me, or promoted me to admiral, long ago. At 60, my eyes are not what they once were. I therefore had to call a young ensign over to confirm what I thought I'd seen in the photos. Was that smoke hanging over the city from manufacturing or was it from burning houses? And those four dense areas of smoke, could they not be from high explosive shells? The ensign confirmed that they were, indeed, shell explosions. Why would the Japanese be bombarding their own city? A seaman, who had been viewing a dual image pair through a stereoscope, and who obviously was a draftee who had not yet learned the proper way to speak to “brass,” then said “Hey, captain, come over here and have a look at the carrier deck!” I went over to his station and peered through the stereoscope. My first thought was that the magnification of his stereoscope definitely made it easier to see things up close; I'd have to get myself a magnifying glass from stores to help me read with. My second thought was “What the heck?” Those aircraft had no propellers! In fact, they looked like nothing I'd ever seen before. Although they did have wing-like areas and were definitely aircraft, they had no distinct fuselage, wings or tail. Every part of the Japanese aircraft was molded into one smooth form. Now, I'm not an aviator but I've been around enough planes enough to know that these things were designed to be extremely fast. But how were they propelled? If the Japanese already had aircraft that could fly without propellers, when our carriers were only equipped with Grumman F4F-4 Wildcats that were having trouble holding their own against Zeroes, then we might just lose this battle, if not the war itself. A spotter plane's observer also was peering closely at a stereo-image of the Japanese carrier. He then said, “Sir, I wanted to look at a photo before I reported what I thought I saw but take a look at the edge of the deck of the carrier." I peered and the photo and then asked him what he thought I should be seeing. He said, "Sir, when we were in the air I could have sworn that the carrier's deck was lined with sailors and soldiers and that they were shooting at people on the shore.” I looked more closely at the photo of the carrier and couldn't find any fault in his assessment. Just what was going on at that island? The rest of the intelligence was what you would call “normal.” In addition to the warships, there also were several transport ships anchored in the harbor. I had already known of their presence in the area from the intelligence reports we had received at Pearl Harbor but it was nice to confirm that the transports had not already headed out to support the invasion and occupation of more South Pacific islands. I went back up to the bridge and sent a message summoning the senior staff to the flagship. If the Japanese were distracted and fighting some sort of internal battle of their own then it was time for us to attack.
  5. Snargfargle

    Operation Killer Whale (Part 3)

    CLASSIFIED -- SENSITIVE COMPARTMENTALIZED INFORMATION -- CLASSIFIED TOP SECRET (CODE WORD: ZED) Excerpts from the log of Captain S. N. Argfargle, USN Commodore, Task Force Ishmael Operation Killer Whale As soon as we got within range of the island, I ordered the refueled spotter spotter planes to perform a reconnaissance mission. They did so undetected and when they returned I rushed down to the intelligence division and anxiously waited for the photos to be processed. Now, the commodore of a task force usually wouldn't analyze intelligence himself but, as I may have mentioned, I'd been an intelligence officer for a substantial number of years. In fact, I'd trained the chief of intelligence myself and had served as his CO on more than one covert intelligence-gathering mission. He was more than happy to see me there. The pictures that the spotter planes took revealed that that the island was guarded by small flotilla of warships. Two of the ships, a carrier and a battleship, were docked and appeared to be undergoing repairs. However, other than one cruiser that, by the indication of a wake, was underway and patrolling the center of the harbor, the rest of the Japanese warships appeared to have drifted into a corner of the harbor and run aground. Why were the ships not at least anchored in formation? My first thought was that there had been a cyclone, which had caused the ships to slip their moorings. However, there had been no reports of foul weather in the area for several weeks, nor had we encountered any on our voyage to the island. Though it might be a tough fight, most of the ships in the harbor would be no match for ours. The carrier was of some concern but my captains well knew how to position their ships so as to create overlapping fields of anti-aircraft fire. What might be a bit more troublesome than the Japanese warships, only one of which seemed to be entirely serviceable, were the nine heavy fortifications that guarded the harbor. Why had the Japanese built such extensive defenses on this remote island? More photos were then delivered from the darkroom and I began to understand the reason for the extensive fortifications. The island was not just home to a supply depot and a small research station as indicated by the intelligence we had received at Pearl Harbor. Instead, a small city had been built on the island. Not only this but the research station was not just a mere outpost but what appeared to be a major university complex. And there was not just a supply depot on the island but an extensive network of manufacturing buildings, oil refineries, warehouses and storage tanks too. There even was an airfield with what appeared to be several large hangers. Finally, there was a military base large enough to house an entire regiment. We had expected to face a relatively small force. However, there must have been over a hundred thousand people living on that island. The intelligence reports from Pearl Harbor had been less than six months old. How could such a large complex have been built so quickly and with so much secrecy? And for what purpose? I knew that we had definitely “bitten off more than we could chew” here but we had a mission to complete and would perform it to the best of our abilities. We would attempt to recover what intelligence we could and then do as much damage as we could to the complex before we had to retreat. I was extremely hesitant to bombard any civilian areas so told my captains to limit their bombardment to the military and production facilities on the coast. Then I noticed something very strange indeed. As important as this major research, manufacturing, and supply center obviously was, I understood why it would have heavy fortifications guarding its harbor. What I didn't understand is why all of the fort's guns had been turned around so that they pointed, not outwards in defense of the harbor, but inwards toward the city itself.