THE PEARL HARBOR DECEPTION
The Bombing of Pearl Harbor
On 7 December 1941 the greatest disaster in United States history occurred. Truly this was and is, “’A date which will live in infamy.’”(Costello 1), but not for the bombing of Pearl Harbor, rather for the deception and the mis-guidance used by the Government and Franklin D. Roosevelt. In a purely artificial chess game Roosevelt sacrificed over 2400 American Seamen’s lives, thanks to his power as Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces. By over-looking the obvious facts of an attack by Japan on Pearl Harbor, Roosevelt was able to control both the political and economic systems of the United States. Most of American society before the Pearl Harbor bombing believed in the idea of isolationism.
Franklin D. Roosevelt knew this, and knew the only way in which United States countrymen would take arms and fight in Europe’s War was to be an overt action against the United States by a member of the Axis Power. Roosevelt also believed Hitler would not declare war on the United States unless he knew they were beatable. There are numerous accounts of actions by Roosevelt and his top armed forces advisors, which reveal they were not only aware of an attack by Japan, but also they were planning on it, and instigating that attack. On 7 October 1940, Lieutenant Commander Arthur H. McCollum, head of the Far East desk of the Office of Naval Intelligence, wrote the eight-action memo.
This memo outlined eight different steps the United States could do that he predicted would lead to an attack by Japan on the United States. The day after this memo was giving to Franklin D. Roosevelt, he began to implement these steps. By the time that Japan finally attacked the United States at Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941, all eight steps had occurred (Willy 1). The eight steps consisted of two main subject areas; the first being a sign of United States military preparedness and threat of attack, the second being a forceful control on Japans trade and economy. The main subject area of the eight-action memo was the sign of United States military preparedness and threat of attack. McCollum called for the United States to make arrangements with both Britain (Action A) and Holland (Action B), for the use of military facilities and acquisition of supplies in both Singapore and Indonesia.
He also suggested for the deployment of a division of long-range heavy cruisers (Action D) and two divisions of submarines (Action E) to the Orient. The last key factor McCollum called for was to keep the United States Fleet in the vicinity of the Hawaiian Islands (Action F). Roosevelt personally took charge of Action’s D and E; these actions were called “pop up” cruises. Roosevelt had this to say about the cruises, “’I just want them to keep popping up here and there and keep the Japs guessing (Stinnett 9).’” With the fleet located around Hawaii and particularly in Pearl Harbor a double-sided sword was created; it allowed for quicker deployment times into South Pacific Water, but more importantly it lacked many fundamental military needs, and was vulnerable due to its geographic location. To understand the true vulnerability of Pearl Harbor one must look at Oahu, the Hawaiian Island that the military base is located. The North part of the island is all mountains, these mountains hinder the vision of military look out points, making an attack from the North virtually a surprise until the sound of fighter planes are over head.
There were many key military needs that were missing from Pearl Harbor, and they were; a lack of training facilities, lack of large-scale ammunition and fuel supplies, lack of support craft such as tugs and repair ships, and a lack of overhaul facilities such as dry-docking and machine shops. Commander in Chief, United States Fleet – Admiral James O. Richardson, was outraged when he was told by President Roosevelt of his plans on keeping the fleet in Hawaiian Waters. Richardson knew of the problems and vulnerability of Pearl Harbor, the safety of his men and warships was paramount. In a luncheon with Roosevelt, Richardson confronted the President, and by doing so ended his military career. Four months later Richardson was removed as commander-in-chief, and replaced by Rear Admiral Husband Kimmel (Stinnett 11).
Kimmel by many top Naval personal was looked down upon on, for taking orders from Roosevelt and not considering the immediate dangers he was putting the fleet in. The second part of McCollum’s eight-action memo was a forceful control on Japans trade and economy. He insisted that the Dutch refuse to grant Japanese demands for oil (Action G), and a complete embargo of all trade with Japan (Action H), by the United States. This embargo closely represented a similar embargo that was being imposed by the British Empire. McCollum also knew that if Japan controlled the Pacific, it would put a strain on America’s resources for copper, rubber, tin, and other valuable goods. These imports from the Pacific were all essential to America’s Economy, and to protect these trading routes McCollum insisted for all possible aid to be given to the Chinese government of Chiang Kai-shek (Action C).
Japan had some control over China due to a military operation, which took over part of the country. Thanks to the control, Japan took and used many raw goods from China that were not in abundance in their own homeland. The government of Chiang Kai-shek was completely against Japan, and with economic support from the United States, they were able to deny certain possessions from Japan. The United States Government and United States Navy by withholding important information about the bombing of Pearl Harbor have done everything they can do to protect the integrity of President Franklin D. Roosevelt and the government. True nationalist believe this information is withheld from the general public in order to protect national security, and not to hide a conspiracy that was created by the United States Government some fifty years ago.
This school of thought asks people and wants them to think, “How in the world could the President of the United States sacrifice over 2400 American seamen’s life’s, horrific amounts of damages to the Fleet, and tremendous amounts of destruction to Army fighter planes?” This group also asks, “In the past fifty years why has there not be one single piece of hard evidence which links Roosevelt to Pearl Harbor, or why has there not been one person who had top security clearance to come out and say something about Roosevelt and his involvement with the bombing?”
On 5 December 1941 at a Cabinet meeting, Secretary of the Navy Frank Knox said, “Well, you know Mr. President, we know where the Japanese fleet is?” “Yes, I know, …Well, you tell them what it is Frank,” said Roosevelt (Toland 294). Knox became extremely excited with the ok from Roosevelt, and he went to tell the group of where the Japanese were and where they were headed. Just as Knox was about to speak Roosevelt interrupted saying, “ We haven’t got anything like perfect information as to their apparent destination (Toland 294).” All Navy reports showed the Japanese were in Pacific Water, and were in a direction towards Hawaii and Pearl Harbor. Roosevelt knew this information, but one must wonder why in the world would he not want to tell his cabinet this information, unless he wanted to hide something? On 6 December 1941 at a White House dinner Roosevelt was given the first thirteen parts of a fifteen part decoded Japanese diplomatic declaration of war and said, “This means War (Toland 318).”
Later that night, Roosevelt along with top advisor Harry Hopkins, Henry Stimson, George Marshall, Secretary of the Navy Knox, with aides John McCrea and Frank Beatty deliberately sat through the night waiting for the Japanese to strike Pear Harbor (Toland 320). Not until the morning of 7 December 1941 at 7:55 Hawaii Time did Japan deliberately and forcefully attack the United States at Pearl Harbor, finally ending disillusioned isolationist ideas of an only European War. United States countrymen immediately ran to recruiting offices after the news of the attack, to join the armed forces and fight against the Japanese and Hitler.
Beyond a doubt Pearl Harbor was President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s back door into the European War. Roosevelt’s decisions and actions were very much so, deliberate and calculated, in order to lead a victorious Allied Powers in World War II. By provoking the Japanese and the foreknowledge of an attack on Pearl Harbor, Roosevelt along with his top advisors and the Federal Government are truly to blame for the lost of American life’s and American property. 7 December 1941 shall be a day in American history, which will be remembered as “a day of deceit.”
Costello, John. Days of Infamy. New York: Pocket Books, 1994. Stinnett, Robert B. Day of Deceit. New York: The Free Press, 2000. Toland, John. Infamy. New York: Doubleday & Company, Inc, 1982. Willey, Mark. “Pearl Harbor Mother of all Conspiracies.” 13 Mar. 2001. www.geocities.com/Pentagon/6315/pearl.html. Works Consulted Larrabee, Eric. Commander in Chief. New York: Harper & Row, 1987. Prange, Gordon W. December 7, 1941 The Day the Japanese Attacked Pearl Harbor. New York: McGraw-Hill Book Company, 1988. The Roosevelt Years to United States Enters World War II. Videocassette. By Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr. Flimic Achieves, 1995. 75 mins. Thompson, Robert S. A Time For War. New York: Prentice Hall Press, 1991.
Why did Roosevelt want to enter into World War II? Was it to defeat the tyranny of Hitler? Stalin, who was our partner during the war, was even more vicious and tyrannical than Hitler. Was it to stop the aggression of the Japanese? Before the war, this country did everything it could to give Japan no choice and goad them into waging war.
Roosevelt was a 33rd degree mason. That is the highest level one can attain in the satanic Masonic order. One of objectives of the lucifer worshipping Masonic order is to establish a one world government. After World War I these people tried, and failed, to start a one world government organization, The League of Nations. Realizing they would need another world war to finally create such an organization, they manipulated world events, started and won World War II, and created the United Nations, the tool for the final phase of one world government.
More at: PEARL HARBOR ATTACK: THE GREAT DECEPTION
Did President Franklin Roosevelt Have complete
Knowledge of the Attack on Pearl Harbor?
Did FDR know in advance? Was there a cover up when the truth was revealed? truth was revealed?
Members of the family of Adm. Husband E. Kimmel at a hearing during the Congressional Pearl Harbor inquiry in 1995. Edward “Ned” Kimmel, second from right, said the review still fell short of exoneration of his father, Adm. Kimmel and Gen. Walter C. Short.
A question of honor: After 59 years, military commanders may be exonerated of wrongdoing
By William Brand
For 59 years, the names of Adm. Husband E. Kimmel and Gen. Walter C. Short have carried the stigma of two men who were either incompetent or simply in the wrong place at the wrong time and left way out of the loop.
Just before 8 a.m. on Dec. 7, 1941, Kimmel and Short watched as carrier-launched Japanese aircraft crisscrossed above the Hawaiian Islands, their bombs, torpedoes and bullets laying virtual waste to U.S. military installations, men and machines commanded by the two career officers.
It was the Sunday morning attack on Pearl Harbor, and it began the United States’ direct participation in World War II and ended the careers of the islands’ two top military commanders, both of whom had stellar service jackets.
Now, the U.S. Congress wants to reverse the actions taken against the Navy’s Kimmel and Army’s Short following the attack. It is asking, by a joint resolution, that President Clinton exonerate the two men.
U.S. Army Photo/ Mrs. Florence Short pins the three stars of a lieutenant general on her husband Gen. Walter C. Short on Feb. 1, 1941. A year later Short was forced to retire in disgrace. .
The key to the resolution is simple: Washington failed to warn Kimmel and Short that intercepted Japanese radio messages showed war was imminent.
The resolution asks Clinton to clear Kimmel and Short of any wrongdoing and to posthumously grant them promotions – promotions that were given to every other World War II flag officer upon retirement, but were denied Kimmel and Short.
Retired in disgrace, Short died in 1949; Kimmel in 1968. Both were refused courts martial – trials that would have given them a chance to clear their names.
What has brought this latest effort to restore the names and memories of Kimmel and Short to ones of respect is the relentless pleas of their families and investigations by the government and by historians.
Helping the cause is a book published last year by Oakland resident Robert Stinnett, a WW II Navy Veteran turned historian. His “Days of Deceit: The Truth About FDR and Pearl Harbor,” documenting for the first time the real lack of intelligence information given to Kimmel and Short, continues to draw both raves, from supporters, and objections, from those who flatly say there was no conspiracy to deprive the two commanders of needed information.
The Congressional resolution cites a number of government Pearl Harbor inquiries and notes, for example, that a 1995 Department of Defense study concluded “Army and Navy officials in Washington were privy to intercepted Japanese diplomatic communications … which provided crucial confirmation of the imminence of war.”
Rejected by Congress previously, this version of the resolution has garnered powerful, bipartisan backing. In the U.S. Senate, Delaware’s Republican William Roth and Democrat Joseph Biden Jr., carried the proposal, along with Republicans Jesse Helms of North Carolina and Strom Thurmond of South Carolina.
In the U.S. House of Representatives, John M. Spratt Jr., D-S.C., and Floyd Spence, R-S.C., were co-sponsors. After approval, the resolution was included in the defense appropriations bill, which cleared Congress Oct. 30.
Clinton has already signed the appropriations bill, but still must sign an order concerning the Pearl Harbor commanders to put the Congressional resolution into effect.
So what are the chances of approval of the resolution this time? Perhaps a tossup at best. The White House has no comment, and a Department of Defense spokeswoman at the Pentagon said it’s unsure if the Army and Navy will recommend that the President sign the resolution.
“There’s still a lot of opposition here,” the spokeswoman, Cathy Abbott, said. U.S. Army historian Col. Fred Borsht served on the 1995 Pearl Harbor inquiry panel and retains his belief that Kimmel and Short should not be exonerated.
“It’s a time-honored tradition in the armed services that the senior man on the spot when something happens bears ultimate responsibility,” Borsht said. “During the investigation, we went to Pearl Harbor; we looked at Battleship Row; we also looked at all the millions of pages of documents. I think there were nine investigations,” he said.
“Speaking only for myself, I came away convinced that both of these men – who were good men and had been very successful – simply failed to appreciate that technology had changed and it was, in fact, possible for our forces to be seriously hurt by an aerial attack,” Borsht said.
Opinions in the military notwithstanding, members of the Kimmel and Short families hope the resolution will be signed by Clinton. “A lot of us have been working for a long time and I’m tickled to death,” said Edward R. “Ned” Kimmel, Adm. Kimmel’s son.
Robert Stinnett’s book Days of Deceit: The Truth About FDR and Pearl Harbor
The Kimmel and Short families say openly that Stinnett’s “Days of Deceit” and its conspiracy implications helped turn sentiment in their favor in Congress.
Short really died of a broken heart, and the fact that he could never clear his name haunted Kimmel, Stinnett said. If he helped, he’s very pleased, he said.
Stinnett’s book, published by the Free Press, an imprint of the New York publisher Simon & Schuster, is based on thousands of long secret American intercepts of Japanese fleet radio messages that he obtained through the Freedom of Information Act. The documents indicate America did know an attack was coming.
This is historical revisionism. For decades, revisionist historians have argued that Kimmel and Short were kept in the dark, because President Franklin D. Roosevelt needed Japan to attack the United States to inflame Americans and force the country from its isolationist stance.
It worked, the argument goes. America entered the war.
The congressional resolution stops short of calling it a conspiracy. Congress cites the 1995 report which found that “the evidence of the handling of [the intercepted Japanese] messages in Washington reveals some ineptitude, some unwarranted assumptions and mis-estimations, limited coordination, ambiguous language and lack of clarification and follow-up at higher levels.”
Nuts, Stinnett says. There was a conspiracy to keep Kimmel and Short out of the intelligence circle and it extended as far as Roosevelt. Most historians, though, say Stinnett’s trail of uncovered memos doesn’t squarely nail Roosevelt.
With or without a Roosevelt smoking gun,“Days of Deceit” has created a furor. More than 100,000 copies have been printed. It will soon be published in Japanese, and a paperback version with a new epilogue, adding more documentation showing the attack was no surprise in Washington, is scheduled in the United States in a few months.
“We’re so grateful to Mr. Stinnett,” said Emily Short, the general’s daughter-in-law, who lives in Las Cruces, NM. “I credit “Day of Deceit” with being the needed impetus to shake the Congress loose from the forces opposing the truth,” she said.
In Wilmington, Del., Ned Kimmel, 79, a retired lawyer and the admiral’s only child, said the Stinnett book added another important chapter to the long struggle to vindicate his father and Short.
“When “Days of Deceit” came out last December, there was a seminar about Adm. Kimmel by the Naval Historical Foundation. The book had some helpful information, and it was read by an awful lot of people,” he said. Kimmel said a committee is working hard to convince Clinton to sign the proclamation.
“My opinion is this,” Kimmel said, “finally, after all these years, the people of the United States in the form of the House and Senate have addressed this question, and my father and Gen. Short are exonerated.”
Most mainstream historians say there never was a plot. But revisionists long have argued that the attack was anticipated in Washington.
Dissident revisionists argue that Pearl Harbor, while horrible, did what Roosevelt wanted: It galvanized Americans and drove the country into World War II against the Axis powers.
Congress was right to pass the resolution, Stinnett says. The conspiracy is no theory. It really happened, he believes.
Researching the book
It took Stinnett, a retired Oakland Tribune photographer who served in the Pacific in WW II, 17 years of research through volumes of previously classified U.S. intercepts of secret Japanese radio messages and government memos to produce the book. The radio intercept-code-breaking information went to Washington, but it didn’t come back to Pearl, he said. He learned about America’s secret code-breaking war 20 years ago during a visit to “Station Cast,” a former radio signal listening post in Hawaii, while on a Tribune assignment.
After retirement, Stinnett started his own investigation – interviewing former American military communications personnel and asking our government for long-classified messages, now controlled by the National Security Agency.
When he was rebuffed – he began firing off Freedom of Information requests – called FOIAs and based on a law first passed by Congress in 1966, requiring the government to make records public unless it is in the modern-day security interests of the country to keep them secret. They’re regularly submitted by investigative journalists, but little used by academics. Today, his office is stuffed with tens of thousands of declassified memos and messages.
Despite Stinnett’s exhaustive effort and support for his conclusions, his detractors are equally strong in their belief that he has not supported his case.
Stanford History Professor Barton Bernstein said Stinnett’s evidence linking Roosevelt to a plot to allow the Japanese to bomb Hawaii, is flimsy. “This is a book full of speculation; the evidence seems to be lacking,” Bernstein said. He admitted he knows nothing about the Navy’s message intercept and code-breaking prowess.
At the University of California, Berkeley, History Professor Anthony Adamthwaite takes a more neutral stand. “There really isn’t enough evidence to say if the Roosevelt Administration knew of an imminent attack on Pearl Harbor,” Adamthwaite said.
“No doubt there was monitoring of Japanese transmissions going on – but electronic intelligence was quite new at that time. Now we have the leisure to analyze this data,” he said. “But at that time – there was a tremendous amount of data coming in and the question was – who read the intercepted signals?”
“I don’t think the evidential chain is strong enough to reach the conclusion that the White House let the attack happen,” he said. “You have to realize – for Japan to attack an American base so far way – that would seem like a crazy thing to do from the American point of view.”
The code question
U.S. Navy Photo/ Adm. Husband E. Kimmel, the U.S. Naval commander in Hawaii at the time of the Japanese attack, retired in disgrace. He died in 1968 – still unable to clear his name.
David Kahn, author of a definitive book on U.S. code-breaking, leveled a scathing attack on Stinnett’s code research in the latest issue of the New York Review of Books.
The operating Pearl Harbor attack story long has been that the Japanese Navy task force, commanded by Adm. Isoroku Yamamoto, kept strict radio silence as the fleet crossed the Northern Pacific en route to Pearl. That’s what really happened, Kahn said. No wonder.
“Central to the surprise [attack] was the radio silence of the strike force,” Kahn says. “The Japanese commanders and radio operators alike, say unanimously they never transmitted any messages.”
He adds that the Japanese code at that time, labeled JN 25, by the United States, had not been cracked, and U.S. intelligence summaries produced in Hawaii stated there was no information on submarines or carriers.
Now it’s Stinnett who is scoffing.
Sitting in his basement office in his house near Lake Merritt, he pulls out a sheaf of photocopied message intercepts from the days and hours before the Pearl Harbor attack. All were obtained under the Freedom of Information Act in May of this year.
The intercepts show that American radio operators in Hawaii, Corregidor in the Phillippines and near Half Moon Bay here in the Bay Area tracked the Japanese fleet before the Pearl Harbor attack. The information went to Washington – but it never reached the two key commanders in Hawaii, Stinnett said.
He also produces a communiqué from the listening station on Corregidor: “We are redoing enough current traffic to keep two translators very busy,” the station commander wrote Washington on Nov. 16, 1941.
Stinnett adds that after his book was published, four retired Navy officers who worked at the Navy listening post in San Francisco in 1941 contacted him. One is Charles Black, husband of former U.S. Ambassador and film star Shirley Temple Black. “These guys knew we had broken the Japanese code,” Stinnett said.
“They didn’t say definitely they knew Pearl Harbor was being attacked. But they said the threat was very well-known in their department in San Francisco,” he said.
The admission that American cryptographers had broken the Japanese code was kept in secret U.S. Navy vaults until this May, Stinnett said.
Stinnett believes that one reason the National Security Agency remains reluctant to declassify the rest of the Pearl Harbor documents is because the United States still relies on communications intelligence.
“Who knows? Maybe there’s some way they can track Saddam Hussein. Maybe they’re monitoring his radio communications, and they don’t want publicity about what our government does,” he said.
Meanwhile, the mystery continues.
After “Day of Deceit” came out last December, the National Security Agency reviewed documents about U.S. intercepts of coded Japanese messages before Pearl Harbor that Stinnett had requested.
“They withdrew about two dozen documents,” Stinnett said. “I don’t know what in the world was in the text – all I have is the withdrawal slips.”
Not to worry. Stinnett has filed a new Freedom of Information Act request, naming the 24 withdrawn documents.
A Historian Investigates A Tough Question: Where Was The General?
Did Gen. George C. Marshall go horseback riding while Pearl Har bor burned? Or, was he too busy preventing the commander of that Hawaiian military installation from being warned of the coming attack?
It would be an interesting exercise to endeavor to reconstruct Gen. George C. Marshall’s movements after he left his office at mid-afternoon on December 6, 1941, following the translation of the Kita message and the information that the Japanese pilot message had arrived, indicating that the reply to Secretary of State Cordell Hull’s ultimatum of November 26 was about to arrive. It had been assumed from the 26th onward that this would indicate that war would probably come at any moment.
We have an impressive but neglected background for this analysis which not even revisionist historians have seriously considered. They have usually accepted the legend of Marshall’s morning horseback ride in Rock Creek Park, his late arrival at his Pentagon office at 11:25 Sunday morning, his reading there for the first time the 14-part message and the time of delivery message, and his subsequent decision to send a message to Gen. Walter Short in Hawaii, which he then composed and sent through the Signal Corps by slow commercial radio.
We now have a conclusion to reckon with. President Roosevelt, apparently being informed or convinced by the morning of December 4 that the Japanese would attack at Pearl Harbor on the morning of the 7th, directed Marshall to take steps to assure that no communications could be sent to Pearl Harbor unless cleared by him (Marshall). This made it certain that no warnings would be sent through Army channels. Marshall then conferred at once with Admiral Harold Stark and told him of Roosevelt’s directions, which Stark apparently accepted. In explaining or excusing any of his actions after this time, Stark always fell back on the statement that all he did was under the orders of a “higher authority,” which could only have been Roosevelt, for Marshall did not outrank Stark.
PEARL HARBOR MOTHER OF ALL CONSPIRACIES
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FDR Pearl Harbor Conspiracy – 44 Min
PEARL HARBOR CONSPIRACY?
FDR and the making of a war
by Srdja Trifkovic
Some of our readers may be shocked by the mere intimation that the government of the United States in general, and its chief executive in particular, could be capable of criminal conspiracy resulting in thousands of lost American lives. In deference to their sensibility we shall refrain from making any such suggestion. On this, 59th anniversary of Pearl Harbor we shall limit ourselves to a brief summary of what some less idealistic souls have dubbed the “mother of all conspiracies.”
Their claims can be summarized as follows: President Franklin D. Roosevelt wanted to enter the war in Europe, especially after the fall of France (June 1940). In this desire he was supported by the old elite of Anglophile Wasps and by the increasingly influential Jewish lobby. In June 1941 they were joined by the assorted leftists who cared about the Soviet Union more than about America. After meeting FDR at the Atlantic Conference (August 14, 1941) Churchill noted the “astonishing depth of Roosevelt’s intense desire for war.” But there was a problem: the President could not overcome the resistance to “Europe’s war” felt by most Americans and their elected representatives.
The mood of the country was a problem, and Roosevelt therefore resorted to subterfuge. He systematically and deliberately provoked the Japanese into attacking the United States. His real target was Hitler: Roosevelt expected the German dictator to abide by the Tripartite Pact and declare war on America, and hoped that Hitler’s decision would be facilitated by a display of America’s apparent vulnerability. Accordingly, even though Roosevelt was well aware of the impending attack on Pearl Harbor, he let it happen and was relieved, even pleased, when it did. The evidence is circumstantial, of course, and chronologically its more important elements proceed as follows:
1. In the summer of 1940 Roosevelt ordered the Pacific to relocate from the West Coast to Hawaii. When its commander, Admiral Richardson, protested that Pearl Harbor offered inadequate protection from air and torpedo attack he was replaced.
2. On October 7 1940 Navy IQ analyst McCollum wrote an eight-point memo for Roosevelt on how to force Japan into war with U.S., including an American oil embargo against Japan. All of them were eventually accomplished.
3. On 23 June 1941 – one day after Hitler’s attack on Russia – Secretary of the Interior and FDR’s Advisor Harold Ickes wrote a memo for the President in which he pointed out that “there might develop from the embargoing of oil to Japan such a situation as would make it not only possible but easy to get into this war in an effective way. And if we should thus indirectly be brought in, we would avoid the criticism that we had gone in as an ally of communistic Russia.”
4. On 18 October Ickes noted in his diary: “For a long time I have believed that our best entrance into the war would be by way of Japan.”
5. The U.S. had cracked key Japanese codes before the attack. FDR received “raw” translations of all key messages. On 24 September 1941 Washington deciphered a message from the Naval Intelligence HQ in Tokyo to Japan’s consul-general in Honolulu, requesting grid of exact locations of U.S. Navy ships in the harbor. Commanders in Hawaii were not warned.
6. Sixty years later the U.S. Government still refuses to identify or declassify many pre-attack decrypts on the grounds of “national security”!
7. On November 25 Secretary of War Stimson wrote in his diary that FDR said an attack was likely within days, and asked “how we should maneuver them into the position of firing the first shot without too much danger to ourselves. In spite of the risk involved, however, in letting the Japanese fire the first shot, we realized that in order to have the full support of the American people it was desirable to make sure that the Japanese be the ones to do this so that there should remain no doubt in anyone’s mind as to who were the aggressors.”
8. On November 25 FDR received a “positive war warning” from Churchill that the Japanese would strike against America at the end of the first week in December. This warning caused the President to do an abrupt about-face on plans for a time-buying modus vivendi with Japan and it resulted in Secretary of State Hull’s deliberately provocative ultimatum of 26 November 1941 that guaranteed war.
9. On November 26 Washington ordered both US aircraft carriers, the Enterprise and the Lexington, out of Pearl Harbor “as soon as possible”. This order included stripping Pearl of 50 planes or 40 percent of its already inadequate fighter protection. On the same day Cordell Hull issued his ultimatum demanding full Japanese withdrawal from Indochina and all China. U.S. Ambassador to Japan called this “The document that touched the button that started the war.”
10. On November 29 Hull told United Press reporter Joe Leib that Pearl Harbor would be attacked on December 7. The New York Times reported on December 8 (“Attack Was Expected,” p. 13) that the U.S. knew of the attack a week earlier.
11. On December 1 Office of Naval Intelligence, ONI, 12th Naval District in San Francisco found the missing Japanese fleet by correlating reports from the four wireless news services and several shipping companies that they were getting signals west of Hawaii.
12. On 5 December FDR wrote to the Australian Prime Minister, “There is always the Japanese to consider. Perhaps the next four or five days will decide the matters.”
Particularly indicative is Roosevelt’s behavior on the day of the attack itself. Harry Hopkins, who was alone with FDR when he received the news, wrote that the President was unsurprised and expressed “great relief.” Later in the afternoon Harry Hopkins wrote that the war cabinet conference “met in not too tense an atmosphere because I think that all of us believed that in the last analysis the enemy was Hitler… and that Japan had given us an opportunity.” That same evening FDR said to his cabinet, “We have reason to believe that the Germans have told the Japanese that if Japan declares war, they will too. In other words, a declaration of war by Japan automatically brings…” – at which point he was interrupted, but his expectations were perfectly clear. CBS newsman Edward R. Murrow met Roosevelt at midnight and was surprised at FDR’s calm reaction. The following morning Roosevelt stressed to his speechwriter Rosenman that “Hitler was still the first target, but he feared that a great many Americans would insist that we make the war in the Pacific at least equally important with the war against Hitler.”
Jonathan Daniels, administrative assistant and press secretary to FDR, later said “the blow was heavier than he had hoped it would necessarily be… But the risks paid off; even the loss was worth the price.” Roosevelt confirmed this to Stalin at Tehran on November 30, 1943, by saying that “if the Japanese had not attacked the US he doubted very much if it would have been possible to send any American forces to Europe.”
Hitherto eminently establishmentarian historian Jonathan Toland has made it possible for Pearl Harbor “conspiracy theorists” to become more respectable “revisionists” with his Infamy: Pearl Harbor and its Aftermath : “Was it possible to imagine a President who remarked, ‘This means war,’ after reading the [thirteen-part 6 December] message, not instantly summoning to the White House his Army and Navy commanders as well as his Secretaries of War and Navy? … Stimson, Marshall, Stark and Harry Hopkins had spent most of the night of December 6 at the White House with the President. All were waiting for what they knew was coming: an attack on Pearl Harbor. The comedy of errors on the sixth and seventh appears incredible. It only makes sense if it was a charade, and Roosevelt and the inner circle had known about the attack.”
Churchill later wrote that FDR and his top advisors “knew the full and immediate purpose of their enemy”: “A Japanese attack upon the U.S. was a vast simplification of their problems and their duty. How can we wonder that they regarded the actual form of the attack, or even its scale, as incomparably less important than the fact that the whole American nation would be united?”
The real target, Adolf Hitler, duly walked into the trap on December 10, 1941, thus committing the greatest blunder of his career and ensuring Germany’s defeat. The rest, as they say, is history. The ensuing fury gave birth first to a superpower, then to an empire. It swept away doubters and isolationists, it legitimized a total war for unconditional surrender. It created nuclear weapons, the Cold War, the military-industrial complex, the “intelligence community,” and today’s benevolent global hegemony. The people who run the American Empire today will as strenuously deny the existence of a Pearl Harbor conspiracy as their predecessors denied it half a century ago. But in their hearts they’ll admit that, even if there had not been one, it should have been invented.
AMERICAN PATRIOT FRIENDS NETWORK
Who Is Ken Vardon?
More Evidence FDR Knew
About Pearl In Advance
The Red Cross Connection
By Daryl S. Borgquist
Families of the Pearl Harbor commanders have been championing the theory that official Washingon knew when and where the 1941 Japanese attack would occur. Evidence of secret medical shipments prior to the attack is lending credence to it…
A previously unsubstantiated report that President Franklin D. Roosevelt requested the national office of the American Red Cross to send medical supplies secretly to Pearl Harbor in advance of the 7 December 1941 Japanese attack is beginning to look much more feasible.
Don C. Smith, who directed the War Service for the Red Cross before World War II and was deputy administrator of services to the armed forces from 1942 to 1946, when he became administrator, apparently knew about the timing of the Pearl Harbor attack in advance. Unfortunately, Smith died in 1990 at age 98. But when his daughter, Helen E. Hamman, saw news coverage of efforts by the families of Husband Kimmel and Walter Short to restore the two Pearl Harbor commanders posthumously to what the families contend to be their deserved ranks, she wrote a letter to President Bill Clinton on 5 September 1995. Recalling a conversation with her father, Hamman wrote:
. . . Shortly before the attack in 1941 President Roosevelt called him [Smith] to the White House for a meeting concerning a Top Secret matter. At this meeting the President advised my father that his intelligence staff had informed him of a pending attack on Pearl Harbor, by the Japanese. He anticipated many casualties and much loss, he instructed my father to send workers and supplies to a holding area at a P.O.E. [port of entry] on the West Coast where they would await further orders to ship out, no destination was to be revealed. He left no doubt in my father’s mind that none of the Naval and Military officials in Hawaii were to be informed and he was not to advise the Red Cross officers who were already stationed in the area. When he protested to the President, President Roosevelt told him that the American people would never agree to enter the war in Europe unless they were attack [sic] within their own borders.
. . . He [Smith] was privy to Top Secret operations and worked directly with all of our outstanding leaders. He followed the orders of his President and spent many later years contemplating this action which he considered ethically and morally wrong.
I do not know the Kimmel family, therefore would gain nothing by fabricating this situation, however, I do feel the time has come for this conspiracy to be exposed and Admiral Kimmel be vindicated of all charges. In this manner perhaps both he and my father may rest in peace.*1
Smith first told his story to his daughter and granddaughter in the 1970s, Hamman said, and it bothered him a great deal. Hamman had herself served in the Red Cross on the West Coast during World War II and never had heard anything about this before. She was surprised by the story, but she knew, she said, that “Papa would not lie.” Unfortunately, her father had left no papers and never told her of any specific actions he took to fulfill President Roosevelt’s request. She had not thought about her father’s story again until she read about efforts to restore the ranks of Kimmel and Short.
Because Hamman had nothing but her recollections to corroborate the story, without further evidence it was still only a story. Even if it were true, it would appear to have been a merely quiet shift of employees, equipment, and supplies within the overall massive buildup of the Red Cross in preparation for war, paralleling a similar effort in the military from the 1940 Soldier and Sailors Act. Supporting information turned up in Red Cross records at the National Archives, but no “smoking gun” indicated that such an effort had taken place. Ultimately, however, a copy of the Hawaii Chapter’s Annual Report for the fiscal year ending 30 June 1942 confirmed the secret receipt of medical supplies by the Red Cross at Pearl Harbor immediately before attack. In part, it reads:
In the latter half of 1941, and indeed prior thereto, the Hawaii Chapter took the definite position that there was serious trouble ahead in the Pacific. In spite of peaceful cooings from both American and “enemy” sources, and suggestions to slow down, we stepped up.
. . . We obtained from National Headquarters of the American Red Cross in Washington vital medical supplies and drugs to the value of some $50,000, which were here before December 7th, unbeknown save to a very few, and were stored in cooperation with the Army. We likewise obtained from Washington First Aid equipment and supplies to the value of about $25,000, which were also available.*2
This seems to correspond with Hamman’s recollection of what her father had told her. So why did the story not come out at the time? And what about the cooperative efforts with the Army to store the supplies? Who in the Army knew, and where were the supplies stored? Did General Short, the Army commanding officer for the Hawaiian Department, know about these supplies? If he did, then he also would have been better prepared for the attack. The best answer to these questions is that Hawaiian Red Cross officials must have thought the secret transfer of supplies was in response to previous requests for assistance from national headquarters. Additional evidence indicates, however, that a few Hawaiian officials may have received an advance warning.
The supplies might have been kept secret for several reasons. Hawaiian Red Cross officials might have wanted to protect them from potential Japanese saboteurs, about whom military officials had been duly warned. Those officials also were soliciting donations and volunteers from the community to help in preparing supplies. Publicizing receipt of the medical supplies might have dampened enthusiasm and support for Red Cross projects.
Regarding the question of Army cooperation, the Army had been supportive of the Red Cross and civilian defense preparations and was undoubtedly supporting these efforts at the time. General Short’s Army Day Speech to the Honolulu Chamber of Commerce on 6 April 1941 corroborates this. The subject of this major speech was civilian defense preparation–including preparations that should be made by the Red Cross–and was deemed important enough by the Army board and the joint congressional committee to have been included in the official record.*3
Red Cross personnel activities and assignments appear to support the Hamman story as well. A select number of experienced people were tapped to go to Hawaii in fall 1941–all of them directed from Washington. Some arrived as regular transfers; others appear to have been special transfers. Almost all arrived just in time to prepare for the Pearl Harbor attack in the rapid and massive buildup that resulted from the Selective Service Act of 1940.*4
From required Red Cross monthly field reports, nurses recruited for the military by the Red Cross and those who had received commissions as Army nurses filed reports, noting their times of arrival. One of the two new Red Cross nurses at Station Hospital Hickam Field in Honolulu, on duty the morning of 7 December 1941, wrote in a 16 February 1942 letter to Major Julia O. Flikke, Superintendent of the Army Nurse Corps in Washington:
. . . As you may recall, there were just six of us, who, on November 15th were transferred to Station Hospital, Hickam Field. We felt that we were the happiest group of nurses anywhere–a new 30 bed hospital, lovely quarters–just two blocks from the Officer’s Club, nice working hours, more social activity than we could possibly crowd in, the hospitality of our Medicos, and above all–the grandest chief nurse, Miss A[nnie Gayton] Fox, who enjoys everything as much as we do.*5
The writer, who is not identified in the correspondence but who was one of the two nurses on duty the morning of 7 December (along with a Miss Boyd, according to the text), had transferred from Walter Reed Army Hospital in July 1941 and had been transferred again from somewhere else, arriving for duty in Hawaii at the new hospital on 15 November 1941.
Red Cross Field Director Nell Ennis, at the U.S. Naval Hospital in Pearl Harbor, filed her first narrative report for November to December 1941. She wrote:
The greatest difficulty was the fact that the supplies ordered in October had not been received. This was a real handicap, for, as we were expecting this shipment daily we did not want to make local purchases thereby duplicating the order.
. . . the following month [December] brought an avalanche of work entirely foreign to any previous services I have ever been called upon to do.
. . . The Red Cross volunteers were my only workers and without them I could not have carried on. . . . There were six Gray Ladies who had received training at other naval stations and the medical staff frequently spoke of their efficiency and endurance.*6
On 22 November 1941, William Carl Hunt, acting manager of the Eastern Area, sent a memorandum on American Red Cross National Headquarters letterhead to the Eastern Area headquarters staff and New England field staff that read:
Mr. Robert Shepard has accepted an emergency assignmant [sic] as Executive Director of the Hawaii Chapter. He will be leaving for this post about the first of December. . . . in these times such changes of assignment are necessary in order to bring the full strength of the Red Cross to bear upon whatever emergencies arise.*7
According to the National American Red Cross Human Resources office, Shepard was one of the organization’s most experienced and capable people. He arrived in Hawaii a few days after the Pearl Harbor attack, but he never became executive director. The Honolulu Advertiser recorded his arrival and qualifications on Christmas Day 1941.
Shepard is not the only national office staff member sent to Hawaii during this critical period, as a 12 December 1941 national office press release states. These staff members are not named or identified, but another Red Cross document indicates their titles.
Mr. Castle’s [Alfred Castle, chairman, Hawaii Red Cross Chapter] cable also stated that cooperation between the Red Cross and the local Civilian Defense in the emergency was excellent. The Hawaiian Red Cross was equipped with large supplies of clothing, made by women volunteers in the islands, and also had stores of food and medical supplies. Five members of the national Red Cross staff from Washington, were sent to the islands some time ago.*8
Red Cross Activity in Hawaii
The secret cache of medical supplies appears to have had a bearing on a discrepancy concerning the number of first aid stations established between 8 December and 12 December. An 8 December 1941 press release of the American Red Cross News Service states that, “Prior to the beginning of hostilities the American Red Cross established 10 emergency medical stations on the islands and made other plans for emergency operations.”*9
According to a 12 December 1941 press release from American Red Cross News Service-based Hawaiian Red Cross Cables, “Twelve 50-bed Red Cross first aid stations had been set up in Hawaii, completely equipped with doctors, nurses and first aid personnel, the Red Cross stated.”*10
As difficult as it was to get equipment and supplies to Hawaii, two extra 50-bed first aid stations represented either a large expectation of casualties or a large error on someone’s part, particularly in light of Ennis’s complaint that by November she had not received all of her supplies ordered in October.
The site where the medical supplies were stored continues to be elusive. The most complete account for 7 December 1941 is by Betty MacDonald, the social page editor of The Honolulu Star-Bulletin, in an article published on Saturday, 13 December 1941. “To the Women of Hawaii–There Is Work To Be Done” states that the Red Cross Motor Corps was mobilized completely by 1400 on the 7th at their headquarters in the Castle Kindergarten Building in downtown Honolulu. The activities of the motor corps in evacuating civilians through that night and into the next morning is well documented.
MacDonald, now Betty McIntire, remembers nothing more than what she wrote in her article, except that the editor had cut out all graphic details of the condition of the wounded. The editor had revised significantly what she wrote and may have added material, because McIntire did not remember some of the points in the article.
The most probable location of the secret supplies was in downtown Honolulu, somewhere that was accessible from the motor corps headquarters. An outbuilding at the then-sprawling Fort DeRussy is the most likely site. The existence and location of the surgical dressings made by the Hawaii Chapter are well documented and known; these also were distributed by the motor corps. The motor corps probably began its 7 December trips downtown, picking up supplies and delivering them to hospital and medical sites and then picking up evacuees or wounded and delivering them to medical facilities or civilian relocation centers on the return trip to Honolulu.
In the book At His Side: The Story of the American Red Cross Overseas in World War II (New York: Coward-McCann, 1945), George Gershon Korson writes that the motor corps’ “first assignment on 7 December was the delivery of Red Cross surgical dressing and medical supplies to the Army and naval hospitals and civilian emergency hospitals set up in school and government buildings.” None of the first-hand accounts from military hospital personnel and commanding officers records the delivery of any Red Cross supplies or the work of Red Cross ambulances, nor can any reference be found for Korson’s statement.
War Volunteer Study and Staffing Levels
In his monthly report for November 1941, American Red Cross Director of Personnel J. Blaine Gwin made a significant statement about the escalation in staffing:
It is interesting to note that we have reached the point where the total number of temporary staff members exceeds the number of permanent or regular staff members, being 1,505 temporary employees as compared with 1,029 permanent or regular employees.*11
In order to determine how many volunteers would be needed, the National Headquarters conducted a study on the “proposed utilization of volunteers on the national organization staff.” It was completed on 29 October 1941, sent to the chairman, and subsequently forwarded to Red Cross national office area directors by Director of Domestic Operations DeWitt Smith on 2 December 1941.*12 Only a few positions could be identified as suitable for volunteers at the national headquarters, where full-time permanent employees were needed, but many volunteers would be needed by the Red Cross chapters.
While it is noteworthy that the study was completed a month in advance of the Pearl Harbor attack and forwarded to the area directors just five days before it, the most significant fact seems to be that the Red Cross national office had for all practical purposes already staffed up to wartime operational levels by November 1941, even though war had not yet begun.
Red Cross Home Service Director Sanderson opened his November 1941 monthly report, dated 3 December 1941, with the statement: “Every phase of our Home Service program has continued to develop new interests and a tremendous increase in activity has been in evidence during the month.” All of the Home Service field representative staffs had been called in on 10 November for “instructions regarding the study now being made of Chapters in areas adjacent to military centers.” Buried in this report is another statement worthy of note:
The report from the Pacific Area shows that the Home Service staff has been augmented for the special study by the Director of Disaster Relief, Director of Personnel, Administrative Assistant, and three General Field Representatives, all of whom met with the Home Service group on the 10th and 11th [November 1941].*13
These must be the Washington people mentioned in the previously cited 12 December press release, even though the release said five were from Washington and six are named here. This group met with the Home Service group early in the month as part of a special Pacific emphasis. When they were deployed to Hawaii is not stated, but it was in time to be on-site for the Pearl Harbor attack. The national Red Cross office was giving particular attention to the Pacific, which could be expected. But does any evidence support the notion that they were given advance planning information of the Pearl Harbor attack? A possible answer can be found in the diaries of William Castle, a former Under Secretary of State whose brother Alfred was the Chairman of the Red Cross in Hawaii. On 26 December 1941, William received his first correspondence from brother Alfred after the bombing on 7 December and recorded in his diary:
This morning I actually had letters from Alfred in Honolulu. . . . Alfred and his family always go to the country for the week-end; this was the first time this year they had not gone. Alfred said that he felt the moment to be exceedingly critical and that he did not want to be out of town. This remark made me think very hard, because it would suggest that they knew in Honolulu, far better than we did here, how critical the situation was.*14
Alfred Castle’s daughter Gwendolyn remembers an unusual conversation with her father about going to the Laie house on Friday, 5 December. She wrote:
Indeed, I do know why Father and Mother didn’t go to Laie the weekend of December 7th. Father felt that, from news he had received from letters from Uncle Billy [William Castle] in Washington war with Japan was imminent. Charlie (my then-husband) and I wanted to use the Laie house that weekend as we had been invited to the Spaldings’ (nearby) for tennis and lunch on Sunday. On Friday Father called me and said he would rather we wouldn’t go to Laie as he felt a Japanese attack was imminent. I told Charlie that when he came home that evening, and he said that as the navy had its patrol planes 2,000 miles out there was no way the Japanese could have a surprise attack. I told Father this the next day, and he reluctantly agreed to let us go. So of course that is where we were when the attack came that Sunday morning.
The timing of this conversation two days before the Pearl Harbor attack raises a question, especially since William Castle’s diary entries do not support the reason given by Alfred for knowing that an attack by the Japanese was imminent. It appears that Alfred was covering another confidential source by using his brother’s name. No one would question that the former Under Secretary of State would have confidential sources and that he might convey such information. The Castle family has indicated that the former Hawaii Red Cross chairman had many confidential sources, and much of his correspondence or notes of conversations no longer exist.
Taken alone, this might mean nothing and be merely coincidental, but the comments reflect a striking correlation with actions by some of President Roosevelt’s closest staff 6,000 miles away. The President’s Naval Aide, Captain John R. Beardall, had come unannounced to the White House in full uniform for Sunday duty, a first since his arrival in May 1941. Beardall testified in the congressional hearings on the Pearl Harbor attack in 1946 that he also put his staff on 24-hour duty for the first time beginning Friday, 5 December 1941. His response to questioning from Senator Homer Ferguson (R-MI) used almost the same language as Castle, even though they were recorded years apart and no evidence exists that the two had never conversed: “The situation was getting more tense in the diplomatic relations, and I wanted somebody to be there in case I was going out for dinner or somewhere else . . . .”*15 Beardall was someone with direct access to MAGIC–the deciphered intercepts of Japanese diplomatic messages. So how was it that Alfred Castle came up with this language and stayed home that weekend in Honolulu? This appears to be evidence of contact with someone who either had access, or was being advised by someone with access, to MAGIC intelligence.
As Hamman pointed out in her letter, her father had top-secret clearance and was privy to other secret operations during the war. Why not this one?
In fall 1941, the Red Cross conducted its most aggressive peacetime annual “Roll Call” fundraising campaigns, with national coverage and using well-known personalities and heavy business involvement. Most of the cabinet officers, particularly high military officials, gave significantly throughout the fall on behalf of the Roll Call. Behind the scenes, some unusual budgetary activity was taking place. Red Cross records show the change from peacetime to wartime before the Pearl Harbor attack.
At the meeting of the American Red Cross Central Committee on 24 June 1941, committee members adopted its first resolution moving it to a war footing:
That the Central Committee hereby approves the following general provisions with reference to a possible campaign for a national Defense Fund, or for a War Relief Fund in the event of the involvement of this country in war. It is recognized that the development of events and other unforeseen conditions may require some adaptation of these general provisions and the Chairman is authorized to take such steps in this connection as seem to him wise and necessary.*16
The provisions that follow the resolution recognize:
That the National Defense activities or the War Relief activities, if this country becomes involved, will require the participation of practically the entire organization and activities of the Red Cross, and that it is not practicable to segregate these activities in such a way as to finance some of them from the General Fund and others from the National Defense or the War Relief Fund or the Foreign War Relief Fund.
The Chairman is authorized, if in his judgment the timing of events makes such a step necessary, to combine the fund raising campaign with the regular annual Roll Call and the Junior enrollment, under such terms and conditions as he may approve.
At the 16 September 1941 meeting of the central committee, the chairman was authorized to make special arrangements for the national office to receive more than the usual 50 cents from some of the larger membership gifts in the intensified Roll Call drive.*17 A member was defined as anyone giving more than one dollar. The standard peacetime practice was for the national office to receive 50 cents per membership, and the remainder of the gift would remain with the chapters to fund their activities. The reason for the change appears in the statement approved by the central committee:
It was recognized that major emergencies might develop before the Roll Call which would require changes in the fund raising plans and the Chairman was authorized to take appropriate steps should such emergencies occur.
On Saturday, 29 November 1941, DeWitt Smith sent three memos to key Red Cross managers with an attachment for $1 million to finance expenditures not covered in the current budget. This had been approved by the chairman the day before, using the emergency authority. Smith also wrote in the cover memo that they should not wait until the end of December as planned to revamp the budget but should do so at the end of November. The date of the memo being 29 November, this was an order to make an immediate revision of the budget, because the next day was the end of the month.*18 Most of the materials were for running a massive support system for servicemen after the war had begun. But the war had not begun; this was eight days before the Pearl Harbor attack.
The role played by the Red Cross at Pearl Harbor has been neglected by historians, mostly because accounts inevitably focus on the military attack. In all of the confusion after the Japanese attack and with military censorship, the arrival and activities of Red Cross medical workers at all of the major military locations immediately before the Pearl Harbor attack were not questioned, most likely because of the high esteem in which the organization always had been held. Their arrival had been coordinated quietly from Washington and even most of the workers themselves–although some seem to have had more information–thought it a mere coincidence that they were there just before the attack. But thanks to Don Smith’s daughter, it is now known that it was no accident that specific pieces were in place in the nick of time. It appears to have been part of a planned operation within the rapid overall growth of the Red Cross.
In 1941, only a small group of people close to President Roosevelt were the real players and were actually part of the decision-making process. Many of these same people were also on the Red Cross Board. In effect, the Red Cross became an extension of their policy-execution process, which explains why the personnel and budget activities so closely paralleled White House insiders’ knowledge and decision-making. They could operate quietly, without the rest of Washington knowing. The location of the Red Cross two blocks from the White House and the State Department (now the Old Executive Office Building) made this even easier. And in the case of the Red Cross, some of President Roosevelt’s closest war advisers and some who received MAGIC intelligence were the same ones who served on the Red Cross board and sat on its central committee. This included the President’s physician, Rear Admiral Ross T. McIntire, the Navy Department representative and the Navy Surgeon General; Sumner Wells, the Under Secretary of State; and Harry Hopkins (who was closely involved with the Red Cross Roll Call in fall 1941 and was appointed to the central committee in 1942).*19
The relationship between the Red Cross, the military, and the White House always has been close, but at no time does it appear to have been closer than just before the outbreak of the Pacific War at Pearl Harbor.
Mr. Borgquist is media affairs officer for the Community Relations Service Headquarters, U.S. Department of Justice. He also is a U.S. Naval Reserve public affairs officer. The views reflected here are his own. This article was not prepared as part of any of his offical duties.
1. Department of Defense Investigation, “Memorandum for the Secretary of Defense: Advancement of Rear Admiral Kimmel and Major General Short” (also known as the “Dorn Report”) signed by Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, Edwin Dorn, 15 December 1995.
2. Annual Report for the Year Ending June 30, 1940, Hawaii Chapter of the American Red Cross, p. 1. The Hawaii Chapter and the National Archives do not have copies in their collections. What is likely the last existing copy of the document is in the Hawaii War Records Depository, University of Hawaii, Manoa, document #59.02.
3. LGEN Walter C. Short, Army Day Speech, Exhibit 1-O, “Proceedings of the Army Pearl Harbor Board,” found at pp. 2607-2610, Part 30, in the Hearings before the Joint Committee on the Investigation of the Pearl Harbor Attack, U.S. Congress, 1946.
4. American Red Cross, 1935-1946, National Archives Record Group 200 (Hereafter cited as ARC 1935-1946, RG 200), “1940-1941 Annual Report of Military and Naval Welfare Service.” The general history of the ARC in World War II is in Box 1.
5. ARC 1935-1946, RG 200, Box 1705 Serial Code 900.11/6131 P.O.A., File: “Station Hospital, Hickam Field, TH.”
6. ARC 1935-1946, RG 200, Box 1705, Serial Code 900.11/6131, P.O.A., File: “Hawaii Area–218th General Hospital.”
7. ARC 1935-1946, RG 200, Boxes 456-457, Serial Code 187.211 (C 141.02).
8. ARC 1935-1946, RG 200, Box 14, Serial Code 020.1801, Press Release # 67107, 12 December 1941. The success of the civilian defense organization and credit for its planning belongs to LGEN Short, who devoted great effort to this throughout 1941. Correspondence from a major Hawaiian business owner after the war in Shortis papers at the U.S. Army Military History Institute and Army War College Library, Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania, attest to this.
9. ARC 1935-1946, RG 200, Box 14, Serial Code 020.1801, Press Release #67047, 8 December 1941.
10. Same citation as in endnote 8.
11. ARC 1935-1946, RG 200, Box 164, Serial Code 140.18.
12. ARC 1935-1946, RG 200, Box 591, Serial # 300.02. Memorandum of 2 December 1941, with attachments; to Mr. Hunt, Mr. Baxter, Mr. Schafer; from DeWitt Smith, “Subject: Proposed utilization of volunteers on the national organization staff.”
13. ARC 1935-1946, RG 200, Box 185, Serial Code 140.14 Document at this location is coded 140.18 H.S.
14. Diaries of William Richardson Castle, unpublished, Houghton Library, Harvard University, ms Am 2021, vol. 42, page 320.
15. Hearings before the Joint Committee of the Pearl Harbor Attack, U.S. Congress, Part 10, 15, 16, 18, 19, and 20 February 1946, pp. 5280-5283.
16. “Minutes of the Central Committee Meeting,” 24 June 1941, memorandum dated 25 June 1941. ARC 1935-1946, RG 200, Box 112, Serial Code 114.22, File: “Central Committee.”
17. “Minutes of September 16, 1941, Meeting of the ARC Central Committee,” memorandum dated 18 October 1941. ARC 1935-1946, RG 200, Box 112.
18. ARC 1935-1946, RG 200, Box 579, Serial code 240.12 S.A. 7. Memorandum from DeWitt Smith, Director, Domestic Operations to Mr. Betts, dated 29 November 1941, “Additional Appropriations.”
19. Two American Red Cross lists provide a good overview of board composition during this critical time period: “Members of the Central Committee During the World War II Period” and “Members of the Central and Executive Committee for 1941.” ARC 1935-1946, RG 200, Box 110. McIntire’s whereabouts on 7 December 1941, are described generally in his autobiography, Ross T. McIntire, White House Physician (New York: G. P. Putnam’s Sons, 1946), pp. 136-137.
First Published May/June 1999