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Re: Pearl Harbor battleship turret top recognition colors
Re. Utah misidentification. The airmen of the USN and IJN made some real howlers of misidentification during the war, for this matter, so did the crews of gun warships. The Utah was simply mistaken for a first-line battleship in the tumult of combat, possibly for Arkansas, which still had a cage mast at this time, or, maybe, one of the New York class. In the long shadows of early morning neither the cage mast or the details of the armament of Utah would have been clear. Very possibly two torpedo bomber pilots thought "Oh s--t!" as they shot over the ship after release, and got a good look at her.
It certainly is not impossible the worthies simply lied about hitting an American carrier.
I do not think that it is beyond the realm of possibility that the torpedo bomber pilots saw a big gray thing in front of them, and this was enough to qualify for a CV. That this was enough for a stressed-out pilot to think "big, gray = Saratoga" certainly is not impossible.
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