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Iowa Class Battleship - United States (Europe 1940)
Part Number EU40_USBAT
Iowa Class Battleship - United States (Europe 1940)
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Description

Iowa Class Battleship

Ship/ Class

Length

Beam

Disp.

Main Arm.

Speed

#

Date

Iowa Class

861’

108’

45,000 t

9x16”

31

4

1939

 

Iowa Class Battleship

 

ID: Plastic battleship gaming piece: the battleship from the game Axis & Allies Europe 40 & Pacific 40.

 

The Story of the Iowa Class: The US, taking its treaty obligations going back to the Washington Naval Arms Limitation Treaty seriously, was a step behind the Japanese at first when it came to new battleship construction.  What’s more, the Japanese had successfully kept the true size and power of their new Yamato-class battleships a secret.  (It wasn’t until the end of the war, for instance, that the Americans discovered that the Yamato’s had carried 18” guns!)  The new US battleships did have two things going for them, however: excellent armor-piercing ammunition making use of depleted uranium, which made their 16” guns have nearly the punch of an 18” gun, and a head-start in the field of radar.  Radar, among other things, allowed them to develop a whole new approach to gunnery.  Their first two classes of “new battleships” after the lapse of the “battleship-building holiday” imposed by the Washington Treaty were thus much smaller than the Yamato’s, but they packed impressive firepower with their 9 radar-controlled 16” guns.  In the hands of a new generation of officers this radar gunnery would finally turn the tide in the Guadalcanal Campaign, when the USS Washington quickly put the Japanese battleship Kirishima out of action.  The Washington had been the second member of the North Carolina class.  The Iowa class, with a very similar profile was like the Washington’s “big brother.”  Longer, sleeker, 5 knots faster and with 10,000 tons more armor, the Iowa class would end up being the final and ultimate expression of the “American battleship” to be fully realized in steel, as the final US design, the Montana class, would never be built.  While the Montana’s would have been the “ultimate gun-fighters” of the naval world, with 12 16” guns and armor that fully matched that of the Yamato, the Iowa’s would nevertheless have been formidable opponents for the Yamato as well, with their advantages in speed, radar, and super-heavy AP ammo.  The Iowa’s and the Yamato’s nearly had a chance to slug it out in the Battle of Leyte Gulf, but alas it was not to be, leaving armchair admirals the opportunity to endlessly Monday-morning quarterback such a match-up...

 

Usage Notes: Use this piece for “Global 1939” and “Invasion of Italy” Variants as a battleship unit.  Other US warships of interest may be: Portland class cruiser & Wasp class aircraft carrier.

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