The Last Stand of the USS Houston
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(May 31, 2006)
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War Plan Orange in 1941 called for the Asiatic Fleet to execute a fighting withdrawal to Java and Australia, giving the Pearl Harbor Fleet time to come to the rescue. December 7, 1941 changed all that. Now, the Asiatic Fleet and the Flagship, USS Houston (CA-30), would fight alone and no help would come their way. After the loss of Battleships HMS Prince of Wales and HMS Repulse on December 10, the Houston was the largest remaining all gun ship among the Allied Fleets. These fleets soon banded together in a combined fleet of American, British, Dutch and Australian warships. Even the combined fleet was not enough. Nonetheless, the Japanese were challenged for every mile of conquest. It is no wonder this fleet is sometimes referred to as "THE FLEET THE GOD'S FORGOT" The Houston and her Asiatic Fleet fought battles almost continuously from December 8, 1941 to March 1, 1942. March 1, is Asiatic Fleet Memorial Day That is the day the Houston died alongside the only remaining Allied cruiser, the HMAS PERTH. They made their LAST STAND in Sunda Strait only two days after the rest of the Allied Fleet was thoroughly destroyed in THE BATTLE OF THE JAVA SEA. This two disc documentary makes heavy use of interviews with survivors of the USS Houston (CA30). The Houston survivors, among others, became slave laborers on the Death Railway in Burma. (Bridge over the River Kwai). The Battles and the POW experience are presented here. Note: This title is contained in two parts in a multi disc set which is shipped in a single case. Disc one also contains a special 60 year memorial dive feature in which divers on the Houston wreck were in contact by cell phone with a reunion of survivors in Houston Texas at the time.
NEW BOOK BY JIM HORNFISCHER:
"SHIP OF GHOSTS" http://tinyurl.com/y2tujv
ALSO HIGHLY RECOMMENDED:
New Book "PLAYING FOR TIME" by Alford http://tinyurl.com/yyqfx5
Companion DVD: The Battle of The Java Sea (Dutch - English subtitles) http://www.customflix.com/208870
Website Research -- http://www.usshouston.org
Online video and additional interviews --http://www.me3tv.com
Order Information -- http://www.buzzcreek.com
Public Access and ETV stations (see buzzcreek.com) are encouraged to air this video as a part of their history offerings. Customers can loan their copy to Access Stations or stations can buy their own copy. Note that sailors from the Asiatic Fleet came from every state in the nation. See http://www.Buzzcreek.com for special offer on combined set of "Last Stand and Java Sea".
The title "LAST STAND OF USS HOUSTON" includes parts I and II of the former VHS title "Death Becomes The Ghost" plus extras.
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Top customer reviews
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Read the book Ship of Ghosts for a great account of these brave men.
Otto Schwartz, Dutch Kooper and other USS Houston sailors, at the time in their later years, are featured in the DVD. Buy this DVD for the interviews, if you buy it. "The Last Battle Station" by Schultz and "The Ghost that Died at Sunda Strait" by Winslow are my recommended reading on the USS Houston. Winslow also wrote "The Fleet the Gods Forgot" as a perspective on the action in the Phillipines in the late months of 1941 and early months of 1942.
For my money, considering all the material available on the USS Houston in the Cruiser Houston collection at the University of Houston, and in the US archives, this DVD was a dissappointment.