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  • Pearl Harbor Commanders, Senate corrects injustice

    Here is an article about this in italics.

    The source is: http://findarticles.com/p/articles/m...6/ai_n8877134/

    The Senate has reopened a long-closed page of American history. On May 25, it voted 52 to 47 in favor of legislation that would restore the ranks of Adm. Husband E. Kimmel and Gen. Walter C. Short, the two commanders at Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941 [see rollcall, HumAN EVENTS, last week, page 22].

    After the war, they had been demoted as punishment for failing to respond adequately to the Japanese air attack that crippled our Pacific fleet Kimmel and Short, however, always maintained that they were scapegoats for those higher up the chain of command. The Senate vote belatedly acknowledges that they were right.

    There is no question that the Army and Navy were unprepared on that day of infamy. Although Kimmel and Short knew that war with Japan was a growing possibility, they had no special reason to expect an air attack on the morning of December 7. If they had any such expectation, our ships would not have been anchored at harbor but sent to sea, and our fighter planes would not have been bunched together against sabotage but dispersed or in the air. The crux of the case against Kimmel and Short is that they should have known better

    The problem with the case against the commanders has always been that the United States had broken Japan's top-secret diplomatic code, known as the Purple Code, in 1940. Eventually, U.S. code breakers were actually able to build duplicate code machines, allowing them to decipher Japanese diplomatic messages almost as fast as Japan's embassies. Although eight of these machines were manufactured, none was ever sent to Pearl Harbor. Indeed, Kimmel and Short were in complete ignorance of the intelligence these duplicate machines provided until after the war.

    Roosevelt Knew Of Imminent Attack


    It is clear from reading these decoded messages, which were known as Magic, that the imminence of attack was much greater than Kimmel and Short had been led to believe. In particular, a message intercepted on December 6 pointed to an attack at Pearl Harbor the next morning.

    When President Roosevelt saw the message, he said, "This means war." Yet no waming was sent to Hawaii until about an hour before the first bombs fell. Moreover, for some inexplicable reason, Gen. George Marshall the Army chief of staff,sent this last warning by commercial telegraph, rather than phone or radio. As a result, the warning was not received until after the attack.

    For many years, there has been speculation that Roosevelt deliberately denied Kimmel and Short adequate warnings in order to ensure a Japanese attack and America's entry into World War II, which had been raging in Europe since 1939. This was necessary to overcome the political resistance against American involvement. Supporting this view is the fact that Roosevelt had taken a number of actions to goad Japan into an attack, including embargoes on oil and steel scrap.

    Only a few months before the attack, Roosevelt froze all Japanese assets in the United States, which effectively cut off all trade. And just days before Pearl Harbor, Roosevelt personally ordered three small Navy ships into the path of a Japanese naval task force in hopes of triggering an attack Although this last effort failed, the leader of the mission, Adm. Kemp Tolley, had no doubt that his job was to provoke war.

    One can perhaps defend Roosevelt's actions as required to get America into a necessary war that the people were too myopic to support But there was no excuse for Roosevelt to deny his own responsibility and lay all the blame for Pearl Harbor on Kimmel and Short. They were just in the wrong place at the wrong time. The Senate was correct to right the injustice against them.

    Mr. Bartlett, a seniorfellow with the National Center for Policy Analysis, is a nationally syndicated columnist.


    I was not taught this reality in college anyway, that FDR wanted war, with
    both Japan and Germany, but that's the reality. There was a major cover-up
    after the Pearl Harbor disaster, took place. Even after 9 different hearing &
    investigations, the truth still didn't come out. Adm Richardson,
    the Pacific fleet commander, before Kimmel, tells how he tried to warn FDR,
    that the fleet was not safe at Pearl Harbor, and how FDR fired him for his
    attempt, to protect the men and ships under his command. People should
    know about all this, in my opinion.

  • #2
    That ought to give some folks a warm fuzzy.

    "I was not taught this reality in college anyway, that FDR wanted war, with
    both Japan and Germany, but that's the reality. There was a major cover-up
    after the Pearl Harbor disaster, took place. Even after 9 different hearing &
    investigations, the truth still didn't come out. Adm Richardson,
    the Pacific fleet commander, before Kimmel, tells how he tried to warn FDR,
    that the fleet was not safe at Pearl Harbor, and how FDR fired him for his
    attempt, to protect the men and ships under his command. People should
    know about all this, in my opinion."

    People have known, and argued all about this since I was a child in the 1960s. can clearly recall my father & friends going back and forth about it when I was in 1st grade. No great new or shocking relevation here, unless one just started studying the subject.

    I'll leave it to others to trash over the idea that Kimmel & Short mishandled repeated warnings and orders to prepare for war. That Roosevelt had information that is yet unrevealed after "9" investigations & nearly 70 years.

    Comment


    • #3
      I am not overly surprised that the two men got the shitty end of the stick.

      When life trashes you, people always look for someone to be responsible other than themselves.

      Those two men were just unfortunate to be the ones on the spot at the time.
      Life is change. Built models for decades.
      Not sure anyone here actually knows the real me.
      I didn't for a long time either.

      Comment


      • #4
        Historical hindsight is always 20/20. The best way that I've found to dismiss and counter these conspiracy theories over the years is to do an overall look at the world at war on 7 December, 1941.

        Germany is pounding at the gates of Moscow and appears to be about to knock the Russians completely out of the war. They were odds on favorites to win by most military sources of the day and FDR knew it. A total Russian defeat would immediately free-up hundreds of German Infantry and Panzer Divisions to be deployed elsewhere, against the British in the Middle East perhaps? A German victory over the USSR would also finally give the fuel starved Germans and Italians all of the Russian POL (petrol, oil, lubricants) that their war machines could ever use, thus putting the Italian Navy completely back into the war with an unrestricted fuel supply and much more effectively able to seek battle with the Royal Navy throughout the Mediterranean..

        The factories and mines of the eastern USSR would be soon churning out German war materials and raw minerial ores for the German industrial war machine. The "Breadbasket of the USSR", the Ukraine would be able to produce massive amounts of grains and livestock for Germany, thus completely negating the effects of the British Naval blockade on its civilians and overall economy.

        The UK was still being slowly strangled by the U-Boat menace in the Atlantic and was still licking its wounds after having won the Battle of Britain the year before. While not in any danger of immenent invasion by Germany, 1942 could bring about the resumption of Luftwaffe aerial bombardment and another opportunity for a Sealion type invasion being mounted. Germany and its fortunes would clearly be on the ascendancy.

        In the far east, Japan's military was tearing deep into China and was also odd's on favorites of conquering that behemouth of a country as well. The Japanese had also recently overun French Indo China and Thailand and was beginning to cast covetous eyes towards the Dutch East Indies and it's limitless oil supplies. Japan's Navy was also the equal of the US Pacific Fleet.

        FDR saw all of these things for himself and knew that he needed to buy time to build up America's Military forces to counter any and all certain, future Axis attacks on US interests. Any sign of American weakness would be viewed by the Axis Powers as an invitation to further depradations. He had absolutely nothing to gain by leaving Pearl Harbor open to a Japanese attack and everything to lose by doing so. Had the Japanese chosen to invade Oahu, as their plan originally envisioned, the US would have lost the vast majority of the Pacific Fleet and its only base in the Pacific capable for mounting future operations from for years to come.

        FDR also could not have known that the Anglo-American Allies would win through to complete victory in the face of a largely unbroken string of continuing Axis victories, gains and expansions of territory, population, raw materials, foodstuffs and manufacturing capabilities, all of which were key to continued military growth. Sooner or later, Axis industrial war production would rival or surpass that of the Allies, especially in the light of continued aquisitions of territories, population, factories, mines and other raw materials.

        The US has been called the "Arsenal of Democracy", but that power was not in any way infinite. Had Germany won through to complete victory on the European continent and in the Middle East; had Japan done the same in China and throughout Asia, WWII would have lasted far longer than it did and its historical outcome could not be assurred. In short, the Anglo American Allies could have easily lost WWII.

        The "Mother of all Conspiracies" just doesn't stand up to the cold, hard, light of historical facts. The reason being, in simpler terms, "You don't walk into a bar room brawl with your eyes closed and your chin sticking out."
        "Profanity is but a linguistic crutch for illiterate motherbleepers"

        Comment


        • #5
          John, I am going to take issue with your stance, though perhaps not for the reasons you think.

          I condemn FDR for many things before and after Pearl. In my damnable book, he's a villain for the Morgenthau plan, unconditional surrender, and a true sell out to Eastern Europe (in that 45, the Russians have not made any inroads into Eastern Europe, being stopped on the border by a better equipped Wehrmacht). But if he did provoke Japan into attacking, and I believe he did, I would not blame him, for the reasons stated.

          However, for Roosevelt's plan to work, the US must be unequivalently seen by the public as the victim. Self-hatred and soft pinko socialism had not make as much inroads then but the War office had done a report which came out in mid 1941 on public morale and mobilization. According to my old teacher Mr. Wurst, who claimed he studied it in some detail at Ohio University, essentially, without a strong feeling of danger, like that instilled at Pearl, WWII was gonna look a hell of a lot like Vietnam. They expected low tolerance for casualties, war discontentment in general, people were going to flout any rationing, public anti-war protests were gonna be a problem as people would not see why we were suffering a fight in the Old World when our allies were a decaying hyper-imperialist and godless psychopath just as evil as Hitler. This report predicted the general thrust of Vietnam 25 years before it happened, which is why my teach studied it.

          Therefore, FDR needed a causus belli, and if Pearl Harbor had been allowed to prepare, the IJN might conceivably call off the operation. At least that's how a politician would see it. And Roosevelt's deception worked handedly. America seemed to have been drug in kicking and screaming and the reluctant savior mystique was born. I say he had ample reason not to warn Pearl; the guise of innocence.
          How many Allied tanks it would take to destroy a Maus?
          275. Because that's how many shells there are in the Maus. Then it could probably crush some more until it ran out of gas. - Surfinbird

          Comment


          • #6


            The Japanese were going to attack the Philippines anyway!!! Regardless of whether Pearl Harbor was attacked or not!!

            As I posted here: http://www.armchairgeneral.com/forum...&postcount=140
            War with Japan did not automatically mean war with Germany. Going back to the Philippines, the poor performance overall-not denigrating the bravery of those who fought at Corregidor-US was just not prepared for war period. I think they would have had it bad even if they were ready.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by joea View Post


              The Japanese were going to attack the Philippines anyway!!! Regardless of whether Pearl Harbor was attacked or not!!
              I'm not saying otherwise! But the issue is POLITCAL WILL, not tactics. Attacking the Philippines is not going to get the Jap hatred going like a sucker punch on American soil. The assets lost in the beginning of the Pacific are not important except for propaganda purposes. All losses could be made up in short order, something the military and FDR knew from about 1940 on. This issue getting Americans to obey the government without dissent. This is what happened. My point that they were trying to avoid Vietnam before Vietnam stands.
              How many Allied tanks it would take to destroy a Maus?
              275. Because that's how many shells there are in the Maus. Then it could probably crush some more until it ran out of gas. - Surfinbird

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Wolery View Post
                I'm not saying otherwise! But the issue is POLITCAL WILL, not tactics. Attacking the Philippines is not going to get the Jap hatred going like a sucker punch on American soil. The assets lost in the beginning of the Pacific are not important except for propaganda purposes. All losses could be made up in short order, something the military and FDR knew from about 1940 on. This issue getting Americans to obey the government without dissent. This is what happened. My point that they were trying to avoid Vietnam before Vietnam stands.
                Not necessarily. The US had little to no information as to what the true capabilities or limitations of the Japanese Industrial War Machine or its military were before the war, other than those gathered from mostly racist, prejudiced, second hand sources. For example, we had no idea the Japanese were building three super battleships, mounting 18" guns at the start of the war. The US and British military also believed the Japanes flew second rate aircraft, using third rate, inexperienced pilots. They also thought most Japanese were nearsighted, while having poor night vision because of a diet consisting largely of rice.

                Although the Philippines were a commonwealth scheduled for nationhood in 1946, it was every bit a part of American soil as Hawaii or Guam were and they were both official US Territories. Any surprise Japanese attacks upon any of these places would kill American soldiers and therefore earn the burning wrath of the American civilian public.

                Had Hawaii been invaded and taken by the Japanese, as was originally intended, it would have tacked on an additional year to the length of the war, giving the Japanese a great deal of additional time to consolidate their new empire, expand their war production and do all to grind down the will of the US military in the field and civilian populace at home.

                The most successful weapon used against the Japanese Empire in WWII, an unrestricted warfare Submarine campaign would be nearly impossible to launch against mainland Japan, especially when conducted from the American West Coast. Australia, New Zealand and Samoa would have filled a much greater role on our road back until the Hawaiian islands could be retaken.

                There was much that FDR and the US military didn't know about Japan and to take the chances of having your conspiracy of silence revealed at the cost of tens of thousands of dead and wounded US troops and civilians would make him the most hated and reviled American President in history.
                "Profanity is but a linguistic crutch for illiterate motherbleepers"

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by johnbryan View Post
                  Historical hindsight is always 20/20. The best way that I've found to dismiss and counter these conspiracy theories over the years is to do an overall look at the world at war on 7 December, 1941.

                  Germany is pounding at the gates of Moscow and appears to be about to knock the Russians completely out of the war. They were odds on favorites to win by most military sources of the day and FDR knew it. A total Russian defeat would immediately free-up hundreds of German Infantry and Panzer Divisions to be deployed elsewhere, against the British in the Middle East perhaps? A German victory over the USSR would also finally give the fuel starved Germans and Italians all of the Russian POL (petrol, oil, lubricants) that their war machines could ever use, thus putting the Italian Navy completely back into the war with an unrestricted fuel supply and much more effectively able to seek battle with the Royal Navy throughout the Mediterranean..

                  The factories and mines of the eastern USSR would be soon churning out German war materials and raw minerial ores for the German industrial war machine. The "Breadbasket of the USSR", the Ukraine would be able to produce massive amounts of grains and livestock for Germany, thus completely negating the effects of the British Naval blockade on its civilians and overall economy.

                  The UK was still being slowly strangled by the U-Boat menace in the Atlantic and was still licking its wounds after having won the Battle of Britain the year before. While not in any danger of immenent invasion by Germany, 1942 could bring about the resumption of Luftwaffe aerial bombardment and another opportunity for a Sealion type invasion being mounted. Germany and its fortunes would clearly be on the ascendancy.

                  In the far east, Japan's military was tearing deep into China and was also odd's on favorites of conquering that behemouth of a country as well. The Japanese had also recently overun French Indo China and Thailand and was beginning to cast covetous eyes towards the Dutch East Indies and it's limitless oil supplies. Japan's Navy was also the equal of the US Pacific Fleet.

                  FDR saw all of these things for himself and knew that he needed to buy time to build up America's Military forces to counter any and all certain, future Axis attacks on US interests. Any sign of American weakness would be viewed by the Axis Powers as an invitation to further depradations. He had absolutely nothing to gain by leaving Pearl Harbor open to a Japanese attack and everything to lose by doing so. Had the Japanese chosen to invade Oahu, as their plan originally envisioned, the US would have lost the vast majority of the Pacific Fleet and its only base in the Pacific capable for mounting future operations from for years to come.

                  FDR also could not have known that the Anglo-American Allies would win through to complete victory in the face of a largely unbroken string of continuing Axis victories, gains and expansions of territory, population, raw materials, foodstuffs and manufacturing capabilities, all of which were key to continued military growth. Sooner or later, Axis industrial war production would rival or surpass that of the Allies, especially in the light of continued aquisitions of territories, population, factories, mines and other raw materials.

                  The US has been called the "Arsenal of Democracy", but that power was not in any way infinite. Had Germany won through to complete victory on the European continent and in the Middle East; had Japan done the same in China and throughout Asia, WWII would have lasted far longer than it did and its historical outcome could not be assurred. In short, the Anglo American Allies could have easily lost WWII.

                  The "Mother of all Conspiracies" just doesn't stand up to the cold, hard, light of historical facts. The reason being, in simpler terms, "You don't walk into a bar room brawl with your eyes closed and your chin sticking out."
                  I agree with a lot of what you have said here but not all. Poland, France
                  and Holland had been knocked out of the war, but still had not really given
                  up. There were insugenies going on all over Europe.

                  At the end of the war, the US was just really getting started production
                  wise, & could have cranked out "all most unlimited war materials". Our
                  technology, was really getting going to, stuff like improved radar, television
                  and smart weapons like the VT Fuse.

                  How long could Hitler kept control, in Europe, when those death camps came to light?

                  I'm not suggesting FDR had foreknowledge of Pearl Harbor attack. Just that
                  he used very poor judgement and didn't listen to his commanders. He had a
                  history, of ignoring things, he didn't fully understand. He was alway focused
                  on politics and he was very self-absorbed.

                  By the time the war was over, FDR was dead and so people didn't want to
                  bash him and the mood of the nation was to get on with normal life.

                  Nine different hearings took place after the Pearl Harbor disaster and stuff
                  is still classified yet today. So, I don't think we have all the answers, til
                  everything is released.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Doug_CP View Post

                    Nine different hearings took place after the Pearl Harbor disaster and stuff
                    is still classified yet today. So, I don't think we have all the answers, til
                    everything is released.
                    What is still classified? I was under the impression that all of the depositions from the Congressional hearings have all been published.
                    "Profanity is but a linguistic crutch for illiterate motherbleepers"

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Doug_CP View Post
                      At the end of the war, the US was just really getting started productionwise, & could have cranked out "all most unlimited war materials". Our technology, was really getting going to, stuff like improved radar, television and smart weapons like the VT Fuse.

                      How long could Hitler kept control, in Europe, when those death camps came to light?

                      I'm not suggesting FDR had foreknowledge of Pearl Harbor attack. Just that
                      he used very poor judgement and didn't listen to his commanders. He had a
                      history, of ignoring things, he didn't fully understand. He was alway focused
                      on politics and he was very self-absorbed.
                      American war production hit its peak in mid-1944 and was scaled back when the end of the war in Europe was in sight.

                      Had Hitler beaten the Soviets, he could have kept the secrets of the nazi death camps hidden for as long as Stalin did his own gulags and death camps.

                      FDR was a very successful politician. Show me one who is not self-absorbed, shows poor judgement, while not listening to his commanders.
                      "Profanity is but a linguistic crutch for illiterate motherbleepers"

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by johnbryan View Post
                        What is still classified? I was under the impression that all of the depositions from the Congressional hearings have all been published.
                        I'm a bit curious about what the "stuff" is myself.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Carl Schwamberg View Post
                          I'm a bit curious about what the "stuff" is myself.
                          I thought the "Freedom of Information Act" made all of that stuff public knowledge long ago.
                          "Profanity is but a linguistic crutch for illiterate motherbleepers"

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by johnbryan View Post
                            What is still classified? I was under the impression that all of the depositions from the Congressional hearings have all been published.
                            Best I can do on short notice. JN-25 was not broken until after the war
                            started, or so it's claimed. However, we broke their diplomatic code
                            and even reverse engineered, their cipher machine, from just the breaking
                            of the code. How this was done is still classified. The only reason I can
                            figure out for this, is that a terrorist group, might use this old of a technology. So, Jap codes were not that hard to break.

                            For a documentary, called Code Breakers, they claimed the pre-Pearl Harbor
                            attack JN-25 intercepts, are still classified. If you go back and de-code the
                            intercepts, you can put the pieces together, of the Pearl Harbor attack.

                            Unreleased classified information:

                            Part of the controversy of the debate centers on the state of documents pertaining to the attack. There are some related to Pearl Harbor which have not been made public. Some may no longer exist, as many documents were destroyed early during the war due to fears of an impending Japanese invasion of Hawaii. Still others are partial and mutilated.[94]

                            All trans-oceanic telephone conversations (transcripts and recordings) between President Roosevelt and Churchill during November (of interest is especially November 26)[95] and December 1941 (the first week in particular). There are claims about these conversations; much of this is based on fictional documents, often cited as "Roll T-175" at the National Archives. There is no Roll T-175; NARA does not use that terminology. Also see THE CHURCHILL-ROOSEVELT FORGERIES at American Heritage magazine.
                            Full and "true copy" of RDF (Radio Direction Finder) records from all of the U.S. Navy's Pacific facilities as well as those of Allies, for November 1941 and December 1941.

                            Complete and "true copy" of all raw intercepts of IJN Operations traffic for 1941, including all communications information (e.g. Frequencies Used, Call Signs, TOI, Originator, Action/Information, etc). SRN-115376 and SRN-116643 are of particular interest for some.


                            My source is Wiki, that may not be the best, but it's all I got.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by johnbryan View Post
                              I thought the "Freedom of Information Act" made all of that stuff public knowledge long ago.
                              Nah, for paper marked secret there is a review process. I've had 'experts' explain how it worked (back in the 1980s) and have not a clue what they said. Its claimed the declassification effort was accelerated during the 1990s, then the process was reversed after the Bush II took office and many previously declassified docs were being redesignated and locked back up. What the truth there might be I cant say. I've even heard people identify docs. from 1914-1919 as still labeled Secret & inacessable. Usually Executive Branch/State Dept docs are claimed.

                              I myself have seen totally useless items marked secret simply because some clerk was on autopilot with the rubber stamp.

                              Doug...thats much better. These threads that are nothing but slanging matches with nothing cited or named are so boring. While the material you present is way outside my knowledge at least there is the opportunity to follow it. Or perhaps some better informed person can comment.

                              i supose leniency for Short & Kimmel is justice in the context of a lack of negative action vs MacAurthur or Bereton, Hart or others. conversley censure of quite a few people was in order that month, and later & in that context Short & Kimmel were as guilty of bad decisions as many others.
                              Last edited by Carl Schwamberg; 16 Jun 10, 06:15.

                              Comment

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