cj#1162> * Roosevelt knew! *


Richard Moore

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Date: Sat, 9 Dec 2000 11:32:01 EST
Subject: December 7, 1941 -  A Day Of Deceit
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December 7, 1941 - A Day Of Deceit
By Robert B. Stinnett*

As Americans honor those 2403 men, women, and children
killed -- and 1178 wounded -- in the Japanese attack on
Pearl Harbor, Hawaii on December 7, 1941, recently released
government documents concerning that "surprise" raid compel
us to revisit some troubling questions. At issue is American
foreknowledge of Japanese military plans to attack Hawaii by
a submarine and carrier force 59 years ago. There are two
questions at the top of the foreknowledge list: (1) whether
President Franklin D. Roosevelt and his top military
chieftains provoked Japan into an "overt act of war"
directed at Hawaii, and (2) whether Japan's military plans
were obtained in advance by the United States but concealed
from the Hawaiian military commanders, Admiral Husband E.
Kimmel and Lieutenant General Walter Short so they would not
interfere with the overt act.

The latter question was answered in the affirmative on
October 30, 2000, when President Bill Clinton signed into
law, with the support of a bipartisan Congress, the National
Defense Authorization Act. Amidst its omnibus provisions,
the Act reverses the findings of nine previous Pearl Harbor
investigations and finds that both Kimmel and Short were
denied crucial military intelligence that tracked the
Japanese forces toward Hawaii and obtained by the Roosevelt
Administration in the weeks before the attack.

Congress was specific in its finding against the 1941 White
House: Kimmel and Short were cut off from the intelligence
pipeline that located Japanese forces advancing on Hawaii.
Then, after the successful Japanese raid, both commanders
were relieved of their commands, blamed for failing to ward
off the attack, and demoted in rank.

President Clinton must now decide whether to grant the
request by Congress to restore the commanders to their 1941
ranks. Regardless of what the Commander-in-Chief does in the
remaining months of his term, these congressional findings
should be widely seen as an exoneration of 59 years of blame
assigned to Kimmel and Short.

But one important question remains: Does the blame for the
Pearl Harbor disaster revert to President Roosevelt?

A major motion picture based on the attack is currently
under production by Walt Disney Studios and scheduled for
release in May 2001. The producer, Jerry Bruckheimer,
refuses to include America's foreknowledge in the script.
When Bruckheimer commented on FDR's foreknowledge in an
interview published earlier this year, he said "That's all

Yet, Roosevelt believed that provoking Japan into an attack
on Hawaii was the only option he had in 1941 to overcome the
powerful America First non-interventionist movement ledby
aviation hero Charles Lindbergh. These anti-war views were
shared by 80 percent of the American public from 1940 to
1941. Though Germany had conquered most of Europe, and her
U-Boats were sinking American ships in the Atlantic Ocean ñ
including warships ñ Americans wanted nothing to do with
"Europe's War."

However, Germany made a strategic error. She, along with her
Axis partner, Italy, signed the mutual assistance treaty
with Japan, the Tripartite Pact, on September 27, 1940. Ten
days later, Lieutenant Commander Arthur McCollum, a U.S.
Naval officer in the Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI), saw
an opportunity to counter the U.S. isolationist movement by
provoking Japan into a state of war with the U.S.,
triggering the mutual assistance provisions of the
Tripartite Pact, and bringing America into World War II.

Memorialized in McCollum's secret memo dated October 7,
1940, and recently obtained through the Freedom of
Information Act, the ONI proposal called for eight
provocations aimed at Japan. Its centerpiece was keeping the
might of the U.S. Fleet based in the Territory of Hawaii as
a lure for a Japanese attack.

President Roosevelt acted swiftly. The very next day,
October 8, 1940, the Commander-in-Chief of the U.S. Fleet,
Admiral James O. Richardson, was summoned to the Oval Office
and told of the provocative plan by the President. In a
heated argument with FDR, the admiral objected to placing
his sailors and ships in harm's way. Richardson was then
fired and in his place FDR selected an obscure naval
officer, Rear Admiral Husband E. Kimmel, to command the
fleet in Hawaii. Kimmel was promoted to a four-star admiral
and took command on February 1, 1941. In a related
appointment, Walter Short was promoted from Major General to
a three-star Lieutenant General and given command of U.S.
Army troops in Hawaii.

Throughout 1941, FDR implemented the remaining seven
provocations. He then gauged Japanese reaction through
intercepted and decoded communications intelligence
originated by Japan's diplomatic and military leaders.

The island nation's militarists used the provocations to
seize control of Japan and organized their military forces
for war against the U.S., Great Britain, and the
Netherlands. The centerpiece ñ the Pearl Harbor attack ñ was
leaked to the U.S. in January 1941. During the next 11
months, the White House followed the Japanese war plans
through the intercepted and decoded diplomatic and military
communications intelligence.

Japanese leaders failed in basic security precautions. At
least 1,000 Japanese military and diplomatic radio messages
per day were intercepted by monitoring stations operated by
the U.S. and her Allies, and the message contents were
summarized for the White House. The intercept summaries were
clear: Pearl Harbor would be attacked on December 7, 1941,
by Japanese forces advancing through the Central and North
Pacific Oceans. On November 27 and 28, 1941, Admiral Kimmel
and General Short were ordered to remain in a defensive
posture for "the United States desires that Japan commit the
first overt act." The order came directly from President

As I explained to a policy forum audience at The Independent
Institute in Oakland, California, which was videotaped and
telecast nationwide over the Fourth of July holiday earlier
this year, my research of U.S. naval records shows that not
only were Kimmel and Short cut off from the Japanese
communications intelligence pipeline, so were the American
people. It is a coverup that has lasted for nearly 59 years.

Immediately after December 7, 1941, military communications
documents that disclose American foreknowledge of the Pearl
Harbor disaster were locked in U.S. Navy vaults away from
the prying eyes of congressional investigators, historians,
and authors. Though the Freedom of Information Act freed the
foreknowledge documents from the secretive vaults to the
sunlight of the National Archives in 1995, a cottage
industry continues to cover up America's foreknowledge of
Pearl Harbor.

* Robert B. Stinnett has worked as a journalist for the
Oakland Tribune and the BBC, and is the author of the book,
Day of Deceit: The Truth about FDR and Pearl Harbor (Free
Press, 2000). This article is adapted from his presentation
before the Independent Policy Forum held earlier this year
at The Independent Institute in Oakland, California. Click
here to order copies of this Independent Policy Forum
transcript, audio tape, video, and/or the book, "Day of

Richard K Moore
Wexford, Ireland
Citizens for a Democratic Renaissance 
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