United States Pacific Fleet
USS Pennsylvania, flagship
Flagship of the Commander-in-Chief
Serial 0114W May 28, 1942
From: Commander-in-Chief, United States Pacific Fleet
To: Commander Striking Force (Operation Plan 29-42)
Subject: Letter of Instruction
1. In carrying out the task assigned in Operation Plan 29-42 you will be governed by the principle of calculated risk, which you shall interpret to mean the avoidance of exposure of your force to attack by superior enemy forces without good prospect of inflicting, as a result of such exposure, greater damage to the enemy. This applies to the landing phase as well as during preliminary air attacks.
C. W. Nimitz
28 May 2021 at 14:56
Thank you for posting this. Its combination of brevity and weight is beautiful. Incredible.
28 May 2021 at 16:44
I met the Admiral at his home on Yerba Buena Island while I was in the Transit Barracks @ Treasure Island in 1964. Work detail to the Admiral’s yard clean up detail. He was a real Gentleman.
28 May 2021 at 18:43
Reference to “the landing phase” in this letter is something I can’t recall ever having seen quoted before. The first part of this letter is, of course, quoted in E.B. Potter’s NIMITZ. While Japanese plans for Midway included landing troops on the island and the capture of Midway, fortunately “ORANGE” was stopped in its tracks.
Nice letter. I had the great good fortune of attending the Chester W. Nimitz elementary school at Pearl Harbor many years ago.
I suspect most readers of the Station HYPO blog know that the photograph of Admiral Nimitz on today’s issue was used on the original book jacket for E.B. Potter’s biography of the fleet admiral. Excellent photograph!