March 21, 2005

WWII Japanese Submarine Discovered

This isn't some little mini-sub either.

The submarine is from the I-400 Sensuikan Toku class of subs, the largest built before the nuclear ballistic missile submarines of the 1960s.

They were 400 feet long and nearly 40 feet high and could carry a crew of 144. The submarines were designed to carry three "fold-up" bombers that could be assembled for flight within minutes.

The story says that the wreckage was discovered near Pearl Harbor, and also mentions that two of the type were deliberately scuttled near Pearl after the war because the Russians were demanding access to them for study. What isn't clear is whether this is one of the deliberately sunk boats or an actual war casualty.

An I-400 and I-401 were captured at sea a week after the Japanese surrendered in 1945. Their mission — which was never completed — reportedly was to use the aircraft to drop rats and insects infected with bubonic plague, cholera, typhus and other diseases on U.S. cities.

When the bacteriological bombs could not be prepared in time, the mission was reportedly changed to bomb the Panama Canal.

More here.

Posted by Ted at March 21, 2005 05:57 AM
Category: Military

That's the sub used in the latest Clive Cussler book I read, "Black Wind" (or something like that).

Of course, for his plot, the sub was off the coast of Northern California, and it still had some biological/chemical weapons aboard that the bad guys (North Koreans, I think) wanted to use. Good escapist adventure novel.

I hope Hollywood did a good job adapting his novel "Sahara" to the big screen. It opens April 9. (Also the day Doom3 on Xbox should finally hit the shelves!)

Posted by: GEBIV at March 21, 2005 09:23 AM

Ever see the one photo taken on 12/7/41 from the Jap plane that shows the two mystery wakes from a supposed sub torpedo launch?

Posted by: Russ at March 23, 2005 07:38 PM

BTW if you ever have a chance to watch the documentary "Pearl Harbor In Color" be sure to check it out.Incredible footage.Also,unknow to most people most footage shot during WW 2 was color including the Arizona explosion.The reason it's so rare is that much of it was converted into B&W so that it could be used in news reels and newsprint.

Posted by: Russ at March 23, 2005 07:42 PM
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