Who fires first wins ?????

General naval discussions that don't fit within any specific time period or cover several issues.
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neil hilton
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Re: Who fires first wins ?????

Post by neil hilton » Wed Mar 30, 2011 11:32 am

celticmarine10 wrote:Geez thats almost scary. As Fieldmarschall Rommel said "I have found again and again that in encounter actions, the day goes to the side that is the first to plaster its opponent with fire. The man who lies low and awaits developments usually comes off second best.
Guess this is only true for the Panzers! :wink:
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Celticmarine10
Agincourt and Crecy. The English were 'plastering' their enemies long before Germany was even a concept. Many other nations can claim the same no doubt :wink:
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Seekanone
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Re: Who fires first wins ?????

Post by Seekanone » Mon Apr 04, 2011 1:51 pm

It is usually the side that hits first who wins. Bismarck won because she hit first, although I am not sure Hood could have defeated Bismarck in any event. Japan won Savo Island because she caught the US covering force off guard and landed the first gunfire and torpedo blows. :clap:

lwd
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Re: Who fires first wins ?????

Post by lwd » Wed Apr 06, 2011 1:39 am

Well the following was offered in one of the British French wars: "Gentlemen of France, perhaps you would care to fire first?" The French did and got some hits but lost as I recall.

Getting telling hits early is certainly good but it may not be enough. History is full of counter examples.

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RF
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Re: Who fires first wins ?????

Post by RF » Thu Apr 28, 2011 5:56 pm

Seekanone wrote:It is usually the side that hits first who wins. Bismarck won because she hit first, although I am not sure Hood could have defeated Bismarck in any event.
Not sure on this one - the latest analysis of the DS battle suggests that POW hit Bismarck before Hood was hit at all.

It is an interesting hypothesis about what would have happened if Hood had opened fire on Bismarck instead of the Prinz Eugen, as it has been suggested that the gunnery that produced the near misses on the cruiser would otherwise have hit Bismarck in the bow, miships and stern, before the Bismarck third salvo hit on Hood. But this of course is conjecture. Just as the question ''what if the shell that blew up the Hood was a dud?''
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RF
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Re: Who fires first wins ?????

Post by RF » Thu Apr 28, 2011 6:02 pm

lwd wrote:Well the following was offered in one of the British French wars: "Gentlemen of France, perhaps you would care to fire first?"
It makes war sound almost like a game of cricket......

It also brought back to my mind the alleged comment from Oliver Cromwell at the start of the Battle of Edge Hill, when he enquired why the Parliamentarian Army wasn't opening fire and on being told that the commanders were waiting for the ''appointed hour'' exclaimed ''the appointed hour? whose stupidity is this? Colonel Hampdon - open fire!''
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Re: Who fires first wins ?????

Post by lwd » Thu Apr 28, 2011 6:08 pm

RF wrote:
lwd wrote:Well the following was offered in one of the British French wars: "Gentlemen of France, perhaps you would care to fire first?"
It makes war sound almost like a game of cricket......

It also brought back to my mind the alleged comment from Oliver Cromwell at the start of the Battle of Edge Hill, when he enquired why the Parliamentarian Army wasn't opening fire and on being told that the commanders were waiting for the ''appointed hour'' exclaimed ''the appointed hour? whose stupidity is this? Colonel Hampdon - open fire!''
If I recall correctly in the case above the French fired. The British then closed the range and delivered a much more devestating volley.

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Re: Who fires first wins ?????

Post by Bgile » Thu Apr 28, 2011 8:14 pm

In naval combat it's often the case that the side firing first achieved tactical surprise and has a substantial advantage because of that.

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RF
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Re: Who fires first wins ?????

Post by RF » Fri Apr 29, 2011 3:52 pm

Admiral Holland did just this at the start of the DS battle, as the German observers were only able to confirm the identity of the British ships when they opened fire. Despite the delay in the Germans opening fire they still of course decisively won that encounter....
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Re: Who fires first wins ?????

Post by Bgile » Fri Apr 29, 2011 5:31 pm

The Germans thought they might be German battleships? Good grief.

I was primarily referring to night actions in the Pacific, where one side would sometimes strike first with torpedoes and then gunfire at close range. Two prominent examples are Savo Island and Surigao Strait, but there are others.

lwd
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Re: Who fires first wins ?????

Post by lwd » Fri Apr 29, 2011 5:34 pm

No the Germans thought that they were British cruisers.

BobDonnald
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Re: Who fires first wins ?????

Post by BobDonnald » Mon Apr 18, 2016 12:44 am

So the Nowaki won when it was engaged by Iowa and New Jersey? I could argue that either way.
The second meeting didn't come off as well if memory serves.

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Re: Who fires first wins ?????

Post by Harry Lime » Mon Apr 18, 2016 1:48 pm

It was a Lord Charles Hay at the battle of Fontenoy 1745 who invited the French to fire first. The volleys of the English Foot Guards broke the French line, but ultimately the British and their allies were driven back and they are considered to have lost the battle.

The film "Cromwell" has Cromwell raging about the agreed starting time but that film has some significant historical inaccuracies. Not least being the possibility that Cromwell was not even on the field of Edgehill when that battle started. Certainly the prayer spoken by Richard Harris as Cromwell at the start of the battle "Lord Thou knowest how busy I shall be this day, if I forget Thee do not Thou forget me" is wrong. That was said by Lord Astley (iirc) who was close by King Charles. But that's films for you! :D

paul.mercer
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Re: Who fires first wins ?????

Post by paul.mercer » Mon Apr 18, 2016 7:47 pm

Gentlemen,
Surely it is not 'who fires first' but who hits first and keeps on hitting?

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RF
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Re: Who fires first wins ?????

Post by RF » Tue Apr 19, 2016 8:32 am

paul.mercer wrote:Gentlemen,
Surely it is not 'who fires first' but who hits first and keeps on hitting?
With the benefit of Antonio's revised timings for the DS battle we now know that the first hit was actually scored by POW on Bismarck (ahead of the Prinz Eugen first hitting Hood) - yet the Germans decisively won that encounter.
As a counterpoint it could be argued that the hit in question - the puncturing of Bismarck's forward oil tanks - ultimately resulted in Bismarck's demise...

I would also mention the River Plate battle, where the AGS landed the first heavy hits - and ultimately was the only ship NOT to survive the battle and its aftermath.
''Give me a Ping and one Ping only'' - Sean Connery.

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