Pearl Harbor stillstands for the sudden and deliberate attack the Japanese made on the Islandof Oahu in Hawaii on December 7th 1941. Everyone still remembers this dayin history as the only surprise attack on the United States.
How comethis attack came without any knowledge to the U. S? Was there anyinformation regarding the involvement of a Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor?One of the main questions; was the information deliberately withheld fromthe Commanders in the Pacific Fleet? Many speculate but no one hasanswered this question to the fullest. Only different facts and views aregiven to help with this answer. YESThe start of this controversy started in 1900 when Secretary of StateJohn Hay made two notes known as the Open Door Policy.Order now
The first not wasto provide equal access to commercial right in China for all nations. Thesecond said for all countries to respect China’s “territorial andadministrative” integrity. In 1922 the restatement of the Open Door policycame onto the Nine Power Treaty agreeing to assist China in forming astable government. Japan supported the agreements because of worldwideeconomic stability this would take a turn for the worst as a worldwidedepression would reach in 1931.
Japan was now looking to expand therepolitical and economic influence on China as on Sept 18th 1931 the Japanesearmy over-ran Chinese troops stationed in South Manchuria. The League ofNations condemned Japan’s actions and the Japanese withdrew from theLeague. President of the United States Franklin Roosevelt specificallyannounced that there would be no U. S. involvement in any military actionnot in the U.
S. Then in 1937 a full scale battle broke out between Japanand China which in-turn China receiving only nonmilitary aide from the U. S. This then involved many conflicts between the U.
S. and Japan regarding theinvolvement of U. S. in any stature. Japan, Germany and Italy signed theTripartite Treaty on Sept 1940.
Under that treaty war with Japan, meantwith Germany and Italy. Many pressures increased on Japan when the UnitedStates froze of all Japanese assets and trade with the U. S. , Great Britain,and the Netherlands, the extension of financial and military aid to Chinain concert with Great Britain and the Netherlands which started early in1941. Then more pressure came upon the Japanese when Roosevelt gaveunmistakable evidence that he was not worried about the Pacific Fleetseffects upon Japanese diplomatic decisions when he authorized the weakeningof the fleet, already inferior to that of Japan by the detachment of 3battleships, 1 Aircraft carrier, 4 light cruisers and 18 destroyers forduty in the Atlantic.
A movement in which Japanese spies in Hawaii wouldcertainly notice. U. S. Cryptanalyst had much success in reading code usedby the Japanese. At the same time Japanese Cryptanalysts also had successin reading our code involving movement in our Fleets.
At this point youwould suppose a military act against the U. S. in some way. Maybe not aspecific threat (Location, time ect.
) but would cause an alert for militaryto be “on guard” for a military movement against the United States by theJapanese. Meaning not weakening forces in the Pacific leaving Pearl Harboran open area for attack. Roosevelt also knew from ongoing treaty trieswith the Japanese that this was the “last straw with the Japs. ” Also pureevidence that the attack was happening when Ambassador Grew a politicalanalyst in Tokyo overheard a conversion with diplomatic leaders that therewill be an attack on Pearl Harbor. At first we did not know if there wouldbe an attack, or where or where.
Now we have evidence that it will happen. Roosevelt still refused and Japanese involvement because of specificdetails that were excluded from Grew’s statement. Obviously we hadinformation regarding an attack on Pearl Harbor. Some say PresidentRoosevelt withheld information from Admiral Kimmel, the Pacific Fleetscommander, so that an attack would inevitably bring U. S.
into a war withthe Japanese. The attack would then be a prelude to the defeat of the AxisPowers. NOWith all this information and facts coming into retrospect, the attack happened, we had information, and Roosevelt had signs from the Japanese that war was going to be unavoidable. With all this at hand, how come there was no military movement to reinforce Pearl Harbor? Was this really a surprise attack? Some say yes.
With all this information regarding war against the U. S. was the information to scattered? Was there just not enough information for Roosevelt to put the military and the country and alert for an attack? Even though the Japanese did say “it meant war” was pretty vague, they could mean war anywhere not specifically on Pearl Harbor or even against the United States. Most of the codes we were receiving did not mention Pearl Harbor in even Hawaii in fact.
Even the burning of papers not necessarily “codes” was happening in Hawaii by Japanese consulates. Indeed at the time there was a good deal of evidence available to support all the wrong interpretations of last-minute signals, and the interpretation appeared wrong only after the event. There was for example, a good deal of evidence to support that Japan would attack the Soviet Union from the east while the Russian army was heavily engaged in the west. Plus the high probability of an attack on Russia was concluded late November when we had to concede that most of the troops were moving south.
Enemy moves are often subject to reversal of movement especially for the Japanese. The Japanese turned silent when only a select few Japanese Cabinet members were allowed to recognize naval movements by them and the U. S. Japan kept most of their signals quiet in the later days of October and into November. For every signal that we did receive there were usually several plausible alternative explanations. Another barrier to accurate perception was the fact that the relevant signals were subject to change and often very sudden.
This was true even of the so-called static intelligence, which included data on capabilities and the composition of military forces. Sometimes even our own security systems prevented the communication of signals. It confronted out officers with the problem of trying to keep information from the enemy without keeping it from each other, and, as in the case of MAGIC, they where not always successful. Only a few very key individuals saw these secret messages, and they saw them briefly. They had no opportunity or time to make critical reviews of the material and each one assumed that others who had seen it would arrive at identical conclusions.
For example Admiral Stark thought Admiral Kimmel was reading all of MAGIC. This meant the limiting the reading and discussion of MAGIC over the net. The codes and signals were just too scarce. There was just not enough intelligence to figure out when or where an attack or no attack would be present.
After reviewing all the information given by the sources I received, I have come to my own conclusion that follows one of these arguments very well. I wish someone could tell me how this was a surprise attack. One of my main arguments is when the U. S.
destroyed a Japanese Submarine one hour before the attack of Pearl Harbor off the coast of the island Oahu. That should be a major clue is that maybe the Japanese are closer to us then we think. Yes, there were Japanese aircraft carriers 200 miles off the coast of Oahu. That was a surprise because they went silent and secretly piloted in north of the islands. It was only an hour before the attack when we did locate there sub, but no one was notified of this? How could of these gone unseen? Going back to the early months of 1941 almost a year before the attack there were many codes or signals that were cracked by U.
S. cryptanalysts. I have found much more information on signals or codes that should have not been over looked. “Warnings do no harm and might do inexpressible good”. On January 27, 1941, Dr. Ricardo Shreiber, the Peruvian envoy in Tokyo told Max Bishop, third secretary of the US embassy that he had just learned from his intelligence sources that there was a war plan involving a surprise attack on Pearl Harbor.
This information was sent to the State Department and Naval Intelligence and to Admiral Kimmel at Hawaii. It’s to my uncertain mind now another source who learned from intelligent source that an attack was inevitable. March 31, 1941 – A Navy report by Bellinger and Martin predicted that if Japan made war on the US, they would strike Pearl Harbor without warning at dawn with aircraft from a maximum of 6 carriers. For years Navy planners had assumed that Japan, on the outbreak of war, would strike the American fleet wherever it was. The fleet was the only threat to Japan’s plans. Logically, Japan couldn’t engage in any major operation with the American fleet on its flank.
The strategic options for the Japanese were not unlimited. August 10 1941, the top British agent, code named “Tricycle”, Dusko Popov, told the FBI of the planned attack on Pearl Harbor and that it would be soon. The FBI told him that his information was “too precise, too complete to be believed. The questionnaire plus the other information you brought spell out in detail exactly where, when, how, and by whom we are to be attacked. If anything, it sounds like a trap. ” He also reported that a senior Japanese naval person had gone to Taranto to collect all secret data on the attack there and that it was of utmost importance to them.
The info was given to Naval IQ. I would like to know how the information was “too precise”. It says that Japan will attack Pearl Harbor. Too precise? September 24 1941, the “bomb plot” message in J-19 code from Japan Naval Intelligence to Japan’ s consul general in Honolulu requesting grid of exact locations of ships pinpointed for the benefit of bombardiers and torpedo pilots was deciphered. There was no reason to know the EXACT location of ships in harbor, unless to attack them – it was a dead giveaway. Chief of War Plans Turner and Chief of Naval Operations Stark repeatedly kept it and warnings based on it prepared by Safford and others from being passed to Hawaii.
The chief of Naval Intelligence Captain Kirk was replaced because he insisted on warning HI. It was lack of information like this that lead to the exoneration of the Hawaii commanders and the blaming of Washington for unpreparedness for the attack by the Army Board and Navy Court. At no time did the Japanese ever ask for a similar bomb plot for any other American military installation. Why the Roosevelt administration allowed flagrant Japanese spying on PH has never been explained, but they blocked 2 Congressional investigations in the fall of 1941 to allow it to continue. The bomb plots were addressed to “Chief of 3rd Bureau, Naval General Staff”, marked Secret Intelligence message, and given special serial numbers, so their significance couldn’t be missed.
There were about 95 ships in port. This and about 2 full pages of signals were received by our government. Obviously after reviewing all of this incredible information I was mind boggled from the fact that none of the Admirals in command of the Pacific fleet were informed of this information. Is it possible that other attacks on the United States could have been prevented if information had not been withheld?