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January 5, 2018

Action Report of USS Flusser (DD368) on the Nasugbu Landing, Jan 1945

Transcription of an action report on the 31 January 1945 Nasugbu Operation from the USS Flusser (DD1 368). This is a declassified document2 taken from the United States National Archives.

[p. 1]
DD368/A16-3
Serial 03
U.S.S. FLUSSER (DD368)
c/o Fleet Post Office
San Fransisco, Calif.
6 February 1945.
From:
To:
Via:






Subject:


Reference:



Enclosure:
The Commanding Officer.
The Commander in Chief, United States Fleet.
(1) Commander Task Unit 78.2.8 (Capt. W.M. Cole, CDS-5)
(2) Commander Task Group 78.2 (R. Adm. W.M. Fechteler, ComPhibGroup 8).
(3) Commander Task Force 78 (V. Adm. D.E. Barbey).
(4) Commander Seventh Fleet (V. Adm. T.C. Kincaid).
(5) Commander in Chief, Southwest Pacific Area (Gen. MacArthur).
(6) Commander in Chief, Pacific Fleet (Adm. C.W. Nimitz).

Action Report, U.S.S. FLUSSER, amphibious landings, Nasugbu area, Luzon, P.I., 31 Jan. - 2 Feb. 1945.

(a) PacFlt Conf. Ltr. 1CL-45.
(b) CTG 78.2 Op. Plan 1-45.
(c) Art. 874(6), U.S. Navy Regulations, 1920.

(A) Approximate Track Chart.
1. In accordance with reference (a) the following action report of the U.S.S. FLUSSER is submnitted.

Part I. Brief Summary.

1. The U.S.S. FLUSSER sortied at 1800 27 February 1945 as a unit of the screen of Task Group 78.2, and proceeded in company to Nasugbu Bay, Luzon, P.I., where amphibious landings were made at 0815 (approximately) 31 January 1945. From H-50 to H-3, this ship bombarded the area southwest of the town of Lian, thence along the beaches to San Diego Point.

2. On the night of 31 January, Japanese “Queen” boats attempted to enter the landing area and were engaged by the outer area screen. PC-11293 was sunk. During the night of 1 February, two PT4 boats approached the area from southward and similarly were engaged by the screen. During both engagements, the FLUSSER backed up the screen and furnished star shell illumination.

3. Our naval forces withdrew from the area on 2 February, the beachhead having been established.

[p. 2]
DD368/A16-3
Serial 03
U.S.S. FLUSSER (DD368)
c/o Fleet Post Office
San Fransisco, Calif.
Subject: Action Report, U.S.S. FLUSSER, amphibious landings, Nasugbu area, Luzon, P.I., 31 Jan. – 2 Feb. 1945.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Part II. Preliminaries.

1. The U.S.S. FLUSSER operated in Station 4000 as a unit of 78.2.8 – Screen composed of the following ships:

U.S.S. FLUSSER (F) (CDS-5, CTU 78.2.8).
U.S.S. SHAW.
U.S.S. CONYNGHAM.
U.S.S. CLAXTON.
U.S.S. RUSSELL.
U.S.S. TINSMAN.
U.S.S. LOUGH.
U.S.S. SUESENS.

PC’s 1129 and 623, upon completion of duties as control vessels on 31 January, acted as units of the area screen.

2. A rehearsal landing was made off Tarrangona, Leyte prior to sortie, on 27 January. No training was conducted enroute.

3. On night of 31 January, during attacks by “Queen” boats, the screen was disposed approximately as shown on enclosed track chart.

[p. 3]
DD368/A16-3
Serial 03
U.S.S. FLUSSER (DD368)
c/o Fleet Post Office
San Fransisco, Calif.
Subject: Action Report, U.S.S. FLUSSER, amphibious landings, Nasugbu area, Luzon, P.I., 31 Jan. – 2 Feb. 1945.
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PART III. Chronological Account of the Action.

27 January 1945
0700
1800
Underway on various courses and speeds to form with T.G. 78.2 in Leyte Gulf.
Took station 3.5000 on Fleet guide, U.S.S. SPENCER as unit of screen. Convoy took departure for objective area, Nasugbu, Luzon, Philippine Islands via Mindoro, Sulu and South China Seas.
30 January 1945
0822
0835
2200
Convoy stopped while Mindoro units departed convoy for San Jose, Mindoro.
Convoy underway for objective area.
U.S.S. RUSSELL and YMS5 minesweeping units departed to sweep objective area.
31 January 1945
0620
0706

0725
0810
0817
1000
2301


2308
2312
2312
2315

2317


2335

2340
2341

2342
Deployed.
This vessel on station in fire support area “Baker” which was off San Diego Point about 2000 yards from beach.
Commenced prearranged bombardment.
Completed prearranged fire awaiting call fire.
First wave hit beach.
Commenced patrolling in fire support area.
U.S.S. LOUGH, U.S.S. TINSMAN sighted numerous number of “Jap” “Queen” boats approaching outer screen from southeast. Commenced evasive action at same time proceeding to southeast to illuminate for the destroyer escorts.
Commenced illuminating with starshells in sector from 180°(t)-240°(t).
Ceased firing starshells.
Sighted small craft in water on port side near beach.
Lost sight contact. Observed hull of craft later identified as wreckage of PC-1129. First believed to be Jap Barges.
Regained contact on small craft and also a wisp of a wake thought to be caused by “Queen” boat. Lost contact. Saw large column of water to port. Maneuvered radically to withdraw because of possible torpedo fire.
Regained contact. Opened fire on small boat on port side with automatic weapons. Ceased fire due to inability to see target.
Illuminated with searchlight the hulk of a small boat.
Closed shutters for fear of midget subs. Spotted someone sending SOS near a hulk. Turned out to be survivors calling for help from PC-1129.
U.S.S. LOUGH reported sinking two “Queen”” boats. Heard explosions off starboard bow believed to be either shell exploding or torpedo exploding at end of run.
[p. 4]

Subject: Action Report, U.S.S. FLUSSER, amphibious landings, Nasugbu area, Luzon, P.I., 31 Jan. – 2 Feb. 1945.
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0025
0025

0105
0508

0513
0523

0524
0740
0755

0800
1706
2250
2252

2258

2303
2308
2310
2318
2321
2330
2332
2348

2350
U.S.S. CLAXTON reported torpedo passing down her side.
U.S.S. LOUGH lowered boat and picked up survivors of PC 1129 which had been sunk by depth charge of “Queen” boats.
U.S.S. LOUGH reported all survivors on board (7 Officers, 57 men).
U.S.S. LOUGH opened fire on object close to Talin Point. Reported more “Queen” boats approaching from south.
Commenced illuminating Talin Point area. Nothing sighted.
Ceased firing starshells. Report received that possible “Q” boats were probably rocks off shore.
Observed explosion in water ahead about 1500 yards. Cause of same unknown.
Sighted Jap in water. Attempts to get him to come aboard were without avail.
Made no further attempt to pick up the Jap because of midget sub threat. Killed Jap with tommy gun.
Resumed patrol in fire support area awaiting call fire missions.
Periscope reported on port beam. Searched area – results negative.
U.S.S. LOUGH reported surface contact.
U.S.S. LOUGH in outer screen reported two PT boats approaching from southeast. U.S.S. CONYNGHAM ordered by CTU 78.2.8 to close to and support.
U.S.S. LOUGH opened fire after checking with CTG 78.2 that PT boats should be considered enemy.
PT boats closed beach rapidly making smoke.
U.S.S. LOUGH reported small flotilla of “Queen” boats near beach.
Targets coming north along beach making smoke.
One PT set afire by gunfire from U.S.S. LOUGH and U.S.S. CONYNGHAM.
U.S.S. CONYNGHAM and U.S.S. LOUGH fired at the other PT boat.
U.S.S. LOUGH reported numerous small boats close to beach.
Illuminated Talin Point for U.S.S. LOUGH. Nothing sighted, although illumination was good.
Second PT boat was hit by U.S.S. CONYNGHAM to the southward. Possible “Q” boats reported as being rocks off shore.
Resumed patrol.
2 February 1945
0110
0240

0310
1450
1714
LST’s6 completed unloading and began forming up.
CTG 78.2 departed area accompanied by U.S.S. LOUGH. Tactical command assumed by CTU 78.2.8 (CDS-5) in U.S.S. FLUSSER.
Convoy was formed and departed area on base course 270°(t). This vessel on station 4.000.
U.S.S. TINSMAN left convoy for new assignment. This vessel took station 4.335.
Convoy arrived Mangarin Bay, Mindoro.
[p. 5]
DD368/A16-3
Serial 03
U.S.S. FLUSSER (DD368)
c/o Fleet Post Office
San Fransisco, Calif.
Subject: Action Report, U.S.S. FLUSSER, amphibious landings, Nasugbu area, Luzon, P.I., 31 Jan. – 2 Feb. 1945.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

PART IV. Ordnance.

1. 415 rounds of 5"/38 cal. AA Common were fired during the pre-arranged bombardment from H-50 to H-3. Performance of ordnance material was excellent.

2. During the night of 31 January and 1 February, 63 rounds of illuminating projectiles (Mk. 18-2 mech. Time fuze) were fired to furnish illumination for the outer screen. About 98% of the projectiles functioned and gave excellent illumination. Firing range was between 6000-7000 yards.

3. The Mk. 28 fire control radar was unable to pick up enemy “Queen” boats. In fact, none of the radars (SG-A, SC-2) were able to detect their approach. Only contacts made were visually.

4. In general, performance of ordnance material, procedures, and fire discipline was satisfactory.

Part V. Damage.

1. Own Forces:

(1) No damage was sustained by this ship. PC-1129 was sunk off Talin Point. Exact details of sinking unknown. When first observed, PC-1129 was observed bottom up with a large hole midships in the hull. An enemy “Queen” boat was observed in the vicinity.

Enemy Forces:

(1) Two small enemy boats (possible “Queen” boats) were observed set on fire by gunfire from the U.S.S. TINSMAN and U.S.S. LOUGH on the night of 31 January. It could not be discerned which ship actually hit the boats since both had them under fire.
On the night of 1 February, the U.S.S. CONYNGHAM and U.S.S. LOUGH engaged two PT boats approaching from southward. One was set on fire at about 2318 (I), and the second was set on fire at 2348 (I). Both of these boats exploded violently after burning briefly.

[p. 6]
DD368/A16-3
Serial 03
U.S.S. FLUSSER (DD368)
c/o Fleet Post Office
San Fransisco, Calif.
Subject: Action Report, U.S.S. FLUSSER, amphibious landings, Nasugbu area, Luzon, P.I., 31 Jan. – 2 Feb. 1945.
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PART VI. Special Comments.

1. The enemy “Queen” boats which attempted to enter the landing area on 31 January appeared to be very small, probably about 12 – 14 feet long, and were very difficult to see. No radar contacts were made on this boats by this ship. Two were observed visually by star shell illumination at a range of about 4000 yards and a third was observed at a range of about 2000 yards in the bright moonlight. Lookouts were able to pick up the wakes of these boats which appeared to be capable of about 15 knots.

2. The tactics of these boats apparently consisted of making the first attack from seaward to divert attention while another group “sneaks” along the shore in the shadow of the land.

3. It is believed some of these boats are armed with depth charges, since one dropped an object which caused a large explosion and column of water similar to a small depth charge exploding with a shallow setting.

4. Subsequent information has revealed that the PT boats sunk on the night of 1 February were our own. Prior to and during the engagement, a watch was maintained at 3115 kcs. (Local air warning) in CIC. At approximately 2230, a transmission “Ignatz this is Martinez Copper” was intercepted. This call was weak and intermittent. Only one call was heard. About 2248, CTG 78.2 was heard calling, “Any Martinez” on this circuit. This call was repeated at least twice. Subsequent transmissions were partially obliterated and unintelligible by numerous TBS transmissions regarding firing and maneuvers. Crowded conditions render it impracticable to keep all circuits in CIC manned with a “phone watch.”

5. No IFF was received from the contacts nor were any pyrotechnic recognition signals received.

6. Communication was generally good throughout the operation. The MAN equipment is not considered reliable for communication since some sets are slightly off the basic frequency used. At times, this ship could communicate via MAN with other ships in the convoy and screen on different bearings and ranges but had difficulty communicating with other units. Subsequent temporary installation of SCR 608 equipment permitted communication with these units but not with others.

[p. 7]
DD368/A16-3
Serial 03
U.S.S. FLUSSER (DD368)
c/o Fleet Post Office
San Fransisco, Calif.
Subject: Action Report, U.S.S. FLUSSER, amphibious landings, Nasugbu area, Luzon, P.I., 31 Jan. – 2 Feb. 1945.
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PART VII. Personnel Performance and Casualties.

1. Performance of personnel was uniformly excellent.

There were no casualties.

PART VIII. Lessons Learned, Conclusions, and Recommendations.

1. The enemy “Queen” boat is extremely difficult to spot at night, and it is believed the most effective way to prevent them from closing is to take evasive maneuvers at moderate speed, at the same time illuminating the general area with star shells so that they can be taken under fire with automatic weapons. Lookouts must be trained to look for these boats when operating in close waters and radar should not be relied upon to detect their approach.

K.G. ROBINSON

cc:
Cominch (Adv.)
Cincpac (Adv.)(3)
Comdespac

[p. 8]

ENCLOSURE: APPROXIMATE TRACK CHART.

Enclosure to action report of USS Flusser on the 1945 Nasugbu Landing.
Enclosure to action report of USS Flusser on the 1945 Nasugbu Landing.

To view or download the original document, please refer to Item 2 below under Notes and References.



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Notes and references:
1 DD stands for Destroyer. “Glossary of U.S. Naval Abbreviations – D,” online at Ibiblio.org.
2USS FLUSSER - Report of operations in the amphibious assault landing at Nasugbu, Luzon Island, Philippines, 1/31/45 2/2/45,” online at the United States National Archives.
3 PC stands for Patrol Vessel, Submarine Chaser. “Glossary of U.S. Naval Abbreviations – P,” online at Ibiblio.org.
4 P.T. stands for Patrol Vessel, Motor Torpedo Boat. “Glossary of U.S. Naval Abbreviations – P,” online at Ibiblio.org.
5 YSM stands for District Motor Mine Sweeper. “Glossary of U.S. Naval Abbreviations, Y,” online at Ibiblio.org.
6 LST stands for “Landing Ship, Tank,” Wikipedia.

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