Hello and welcome to the forum, OriginalMexicanBob! I never read the script, but I have read the book from which the movie was based on, and the character of Admiral Torrey was dignified and a bit understated. He was all duty who lived to be Navy. I thing Duke did an impressive job bringing Torrey to life on the screen. Your theory may be plausible, but I don't remember ever reading this in the books I have read over the years.
I agree about the special effects being sub par. You never see any planes in the attack on Pearl Harbor. That always bothered me. Preminger should have took Kirk's offer!