PEARL HARBOR DAY got big coverage this
Bruce Bartlett's book Cover-Up,remains ignored. It's not
fringe-fanatic ravings, but hard U.S. gov't sources, inspired from writings
by John T. Flynn (Chicago Tribune), and his 1944 The Truth
About Pearl Harbor.Flynn, a right-winger, couldn't stomach the
lies of the time.
Before Bartlett's book, many heard vague memories
the years that the U.S. government knew Pearl Harbor would be bombed but
allowed it to happen to gain a pretext to enter to war.
False pretexts for war aren't new. It was, done in Panama
(twice). The Gulf of Tonkin "event" was engineered (see Pentagon
Papers) to provide phony "self defence" excuses for full U.S.
entry into Vietnam's blood-bath. North Vietnam "fired on the Destroyer
Maddox" from a small P.T.-boat. But the P.T.-boat hadn't
fired first! That fact only became public years later!
Bush's intense desire for war with Iraq was so clear
last December , I wrote then:
It would be no surprise if a new trumped-up
occurs...to allow Bush to go to war.... Note: When Iraq killed
U.S. sailors with a :missile during Iraq's war with Iran, the U.S. did
nothing against Iraq then.
U.S. leaders' morality in 1941 was such that they may
have deliberately failed to warn Pearl Harbor a massive air attack
was coming. U.S. Planners and President Roosevelt knew the day before
the attack (due to having broken Japan's secret code weeks before)
when the "sneak" attack would come; that Pearl was a .target!
But warning to U.S. General Short and Admiral Kimmel in Hawaii were only
of possible sabotage and hostility from local Japanese due to breakdown
of U.S.-Japanese negotiations.
EVEN THOUGH LATER, WHEN THERE WAS STILL
TIME TO NOTIFY
PEARL HARBOR OF MORE EXACT INFORMATION, no warning of massive
came! No instructions to move ships, take airplanes to air, or mobilize
and warn personnel for their own defense!
U.S. Chief Stimson sent Pearl Harbor a message Nov. 27,
1941) stating if hostilities occur, "the U.S. desires Japan
to commit the first overt act.... Measures (reconnaissance) should
be carried out so as not, repeat not, to alarm civil population or disclose
(except to a select few) this highly secret
When more accurate information was known the night before the bombing
no expanded warnings were sent.
And why not?
The gov't wanted outrage, which Japan's attack
would cause, to rise among the then mostly "isolationist" U.S.
people to justify getting into war. The U.S. was deeply in economic depression.
War in Europe was. becoming a growing economic boon for exporters of arms
and supplies. Fully getting into war could end the depression (and it did).
Public desire to stay. out of war w too prevalent to try to change by what
would have been only an ineffective unpopular propaganda campaign. Japan's
"sneak" attack was welcomed in the highest U.S.
Stimson's diary explained why the U.S. should
(Stimson's own word) the known attack occur first: "...in order to
have the full support of the American people...."
Of course at Pearl, Admiral Kimmel and General Short
knew next to nothing of these attitudes.
THERE WERE 3 forms of "alert" status at.
#1 Alert was to prepare for internal sabotage. No. 2
was mobilization against external attack and # 3 was for battle.
Short, who with Kimmel, had no hint of imminent
attack, ordered alert #1 -- against internal sabotage -- and the
alert was, as ordered from Washington, limited to a tiny circle of
Short reported to Washington his action to go on alert
#1. He never received word from Washington to change his alert status,
nor any word that it was inadequate.
This is of immense importance, because, the night before
the bombing, the US command and the President knew (from eavesdropping
on Japanese coded messages) exactly when the Japanese would break off relations
with the USA. That would also be the hour of the attack. The "when"
of the attack was now known.
The "where" was actually contained within
very same words as well, but not immediately apparent. Next day, the fateful
Dec. 7, 1941, at. 11 o clock in the morning, "Lieut. Com. Kramer gave
a memorandum to Sec'y Knox of transcendent importance," Flynn wrote.
"The memorandum pointed out that 1 p.m. Washington time was
sunrise over Honolulu [but only] dark night at Manila (in the Philippines).
Sunrise would be the moment for air attack. As a surprise
attack was indicated, the hour of [Japan's] presenting the dispatch (breaking
relations) indicated an air attack on Pearl Harbor. In other words,
we faced an air attack on Pearl Harbor in a little over two hours."
Many other warning rumours, intelligence reports and
advice well before this (as much as. a .year earlier had been repeatedly
given that. Pearl Harbor could be a very likely target if a sneak attack
became Japan's decision. This last memo had authoritative finality
Thus warned (again), the high command did -- what? Use
the fastest communication means at human disposal to warn Short and Kimmel
at Pearl Harbor? No, instead, Flynn tells us the aged secretaries sat down
to a conference. General Marshall wasn't informed until 11:25 . An hour
and forty-five minutes to go.
"Time," wrote Flynn "to get many ships
in motion. Time to get every available man mobilized. Time to get every
available plane off the ground." There were powerful short wave radios
over which a warning could travel. Marshall had a scrambler phone to reach
General Short instantly. Instead Marshall used commercial. radio about
an hour later (12:18 Washington and 7 a.m. Honolulu time). The message
was carried through the streets in Honolulu as the bombs were falling.
Only by 11:45 was it decoded in Honolulu by Army Intelligence. But it was
3 p.m. before General. Short received it, "hours after the great base
had been destroyed."
Marshall's explanation (to the Roberts Commission into
the tragedy) why he tried nothing faster nor more direct than a telegraph
company was he feared interception of the warning. Flynn wrote: "What.
difference? If intercepted the Japs(sic) would merely know what. they knew
already. But Short would have known it also."
ROOSEVELT APPOINTED. a commission to investigate
find those responsible for the tragedy -- Guess who they found? -- Right,
Kimmel and Short.
At first stunned by awareness of their own neglect, the
Roosevelt government reported minimum damage was caused. Later that was
impossible to sustain. More than 3,000 died the fleet decimated.
The investigator chosen by Roosevelt to ferret out
to blame was Knox -- the same man who was warned Pearl Harbor would be
bombed in two hours!!
Short and Kimmel were ordered never to discuss
their own claims of .innocence with any one. Ordered into military
silence about the affair, the charges of dereliction of duty were laid
but the commission (controlled by Roosevelt) withdrew the charges, thus
denying a trial to the accused and thus (hopefully forever) silencing the
accused in their own defense. (Later in 1946, a Congressional report
absolved Roosevelt, as well as. Kimmel and Short, but censured the War
and Navy Depts.)
The government engineered a public image, well played
out for years, even to this day, as follows:
Dec. 6th: Roosevelt appealed to Tokyo to maintain the
peace. No U.S. military alerts were taken lest the US "look"
provocative (despite its actual secret war going on prior to Pearl). The
President woke next morning totally "surprised" by Japan's declaration
of war and attack.
A date that will live infamy, he intoned. After solemnly
promising Americans he'd never take their sons to war "unless
attacked," henow had his attack. And
had his scape-goats in Short and Kimmel. But with a fatal flaw, as Flynn
"Our government...trying to induce Japan to enter
upon a peaceful settlement, was taken by... ‘surprise.' But notwithstanding
the surprise, that government adequately warned Kimmel and Short of the
attack which it did not expect...." [Emphasis added.]
Thus Kimmel and Short were guilty of not preparing for
what they were warned would happen by a government which was totally surprised
by what. happened!!
THE ATOMIC bombing at Hiroshima and Nagasaki is
as "answering Pearl Harbor." "No apology necessary,"
said (another) Bush. But A-bombed in Japan were nurses; doctors; many
American POWs, elderly, pacifists; children being born that day
-- killed or maimed in a horrible burned-alive way. What guilt had these
people for crimes at Pear Harbor?
Japanese were brainwashed Hirohito was "a
Others didn't believe this, but had no say, forced by lies, media hype,
threats, and violence into obedience to military warlords. What guilt have
And who was spared? The emperor, warlords, military
the whole upper class of feudal Japan escaped penalty for their atrocities.
The innocent were cremated unnecessarily, as was admitted by John Foster
Dulles: A quarter-million lives could have been spared just saying: "Sure,
we'll let your emperor remain safe if you surrender." But the U.S.
government demanded unconditional surrender, refusing guarantees for Hirohito's
safety, an offer they knew would be rejected. That'.s all Japan finally
asked to agree to surrender. THAT IS WHAT THE U.S. AGREED TO
BUT ONLY AFTER THE ATOM BOMBS FELL!!!
The U.S., setting terms they knew would be impossible
for Japan to accept, really wanted no surrender, because they would then
retain an excuse to test the bomb for military and political reasons.
And, unlike Japan, the USA is today is unwilling to
"If defence corporations deliberately did
this (shoddy work, overpricing, false tests) in wartime, they would be
charged with criminal violations of the law. If a U. S. citizen deliberately
set out to sabotage U.S. military production in wartime, it would be treason.
There is not much difference between that and what some U. S. corporations
are allowing to happen now." (Star-Ph., 9/28/84)
The truth is that such activities did go on in wartime
(WWII); it was known; and the corporations involved did not get charged
with treason, in fact, if they were charged at all, they were slapped on
the wrist at worst, and at best (for the big corporations) they gobbled
up hundreds of smaller corporations that couldn't compete for getting government
weapons contracts, and ended up many, many times richer and more powerful
than before the war effort.
In 1943, Assistant Attorney General Tom C. Clark had
"At the start of the War program....175,ooo
companies provided 7o% of the nation's manufacturing output, while today,
2½ years later...100 corporations hold 7o% of the war and essential
civilian contracts." (New York Times April 23, 1943.)
This represented the bulk of the 14 billion dollars worth
of new plants built at government expense for these select corporations.
These corporations grew in power by methods that
fraud, theft, forgery and cover-ups. This article will present the proof
of this. While posturing as "patriotic" (then, as they do now)
about the brave "boys at the front," the business establishment
used patriotism as a screen to hide their greed and criminal profiteering.
In a 1943 essay, George Breitman described the facts:
The S.S. Schenectady on Jan 17, 1943 snapped in half
and sank only a few hours after it had been delivered to the Maritime Commission.
The U.S. Senate Truman Investigating Committee on March 23, 1943 reported
the cause: Defective steel had been supplied by Carnegie-Illinois (subsidiary
of U.S. Steel) whose officials had willfully and consciously delivered
faulty material to the Navy, and falsified the steel test records to cover
Equally culpable was the Anaconda Wire Cable Co. They
were indicted on Dec. 21, 1942, for conspiring to sell the government defective
wire, although its officials "well knew at all times" that use
of such wire would "endanger the lives of men in the military
The company went to great and ingenious lengths to escape government tests.
Senator Kilgore then pointed out the cable on a ship controlled the guns,
the firing, aiming and range-setting. He said:
"If the cable is defective, the ship is
against aircraft attack. Also, the safety & success of the entire land
combat forces are frequently dependent on messages sent overland by these
But no less reprehensible was the case of the Wright
Aeronautical Corporation, subsidiary of the huge Curtiss-Wright Corporation.
Wright's Lockland Ohio plant [financed by the government) was accused by
the Truman Committee in July, 1943, of falsifying tests on airplane engines,
destroying records, forging inspection reports, changing tolerances allowed
on parts, skipping inspections, and so on: Inspectors who had complained
were intimidated or transferred. These activities were aided and abetted
and covered up by U.S. Army military inspectors. The Committee's reported
"Engines were built and sold to the
which were leaking gasoline.... Unsafe material has been discovered in
completed engines.... The company's own reports...indicate that these parts
had failed in a substantial number of cases. A substantial number of airplanes
using this engine have had crashes in which engine failures were
This hardly exhausts the list. In a Chicago speech, Aug.
23, 1943, Attorney General Biddle reported that Big Business frauds were
greater than in 1917 or 1918. He said 123 federal indictments were filed,
with 1,279 investigations pending. At that point 71 cases had ended, with
convictions or penalties in about 90% of them, but, Biddle complained,
the penalties had been extremely light. While a few of the smaller companies
did not get off, and some officials were even jailed, the great majority
of offenders -- especially the powerful ones -- escaped.
Typical was the trial of the Anaconda Wire & Cable
Co. Not a single one of the Anaconda officials indicted spent one hour
in jail for their crimes. Some were fined and sentenced, but the judge
ordered suspensions on payment of "ridiculously" low fines. Anaconda
admitted at the trial it made (at least) $46,ooo from the frauds. The total
fines imposed by Judge Slick came to $3l,ooo: So, after paying the fines,
the company still had a tidy margin of profit from its criminal
Revelations of the crimes did not evoke a single word
of protest, criticism or denunciation from any important capitalist in
he country. Employers' associations, Chambers of Commerce and Manufacturers
Associations -- all were as silent as a tomb, their "patriotism"
now low-key. When used by the media at all, these stories generally were
buried on inside pages while huge headlines raved on about miners or other
workers on strike for a living wage. As Rowan points out, today it's easier
to denounce the welfare mother for $24 worth of food stamps she was technically
not entitled to have:
It was always better then for the media to run material
about citizens whose "patriotism" was not up to snuff, and set
the stage for cuts in wages (a "worker's patriotic duty," dontchaknow),
no-strike pledges, and assembly line speed-up (which caused more casualties
at home than on the military front). Discrimination against Blacks, women,
others was frozen, and no complaints were tolerated.
In the quest for war contracts (true today as then),
"uniting and sacrificing" (unless you're a corporate head,) to
face the "enemy" requires, of course, that there be an
real or invented, or exaggerated. We can always, to this day, count on
much of our "enemy" being invented to justify more defence spending,
and ,the super-profits it generates for corporations and ultimately, the
coffins it generates for the young, the unemployed and the poor.
Bob Fink, Editor: Crosscurrents
See: Breitman, Wartime Crimes of Big Business,
1943, Pioneer Publ., N.Y.C., NY.