The Truth About Pearl Harbor

3 Dec, 2012

Note: This article is a part of the author's forth coming book 9/11 and The New World Order, expected to be out in January 2013. This chapter is being displayed because the 71st anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attack falls on December 7, 2012. An understanding of how the truth about Pearl Harbor was covered up for almost 58 years, is essential to understanding 9/11. This is a much expanded version of an article published in Daily The Nation in 2005. 

The article is based on the work of Robert B. Stinnett, whose book The Day of Deceit The Truth About FDR and Pearl Harbor(Free Press, 2000) revealed, for the first time, that the attack on Pearl Harbor was the result of preplanned provocation by a coterie of leaders, including the then President of the United States of America. This conclusion was based on documents that were uncovered as a result of the Freedom of Information Act. Pulitzer Prize winner John Toland wrote:

Step by Step, Stinnett goes through the prelude to war, using new documents to reveal the terrible secrets that have never before been disclosed to the public. It is disturbing that eleven presidents, including those I admired, kept the truth from the public until Stinnett's Freedom of Information Act requests finally the Navy to release the evidence.

The novelist Gore Vidal had the following to say:
Many of us who are veterans of World War II's Pacific Theater of Operations have always suspected that the December 1941, Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor was deliberately provoked. A half century later, Robert Stinnett has come up with most of the smoking guns. Day of Deceit shows that the famous "surprise" attack was no surprise to our warminded rulers, and that the three thousand American military men killed and wounded one Sunday morning in Hawaii were, to our rulers and their present avatars, a small price to pay for that 'global empire' over which we now so ineptly preside.
What would have happened if millions of American and British people, struggling with coupons and lines at the gas stations, had learned that in 1942 Standard Oil of New Jersey [Part of the Rockefeller empire] managers shipped the enemy's fuel through neutral Switzerland and that the enemy was shipping Allied fuel? Suppose that the public had discovered the Chase Bank in Nazi occupied Paris after Pearl HarborPearl harbor was doing millions of dollars' worth business with the enemy with full knowledge of the Head Office in Manhattan [the Rockefeller family among others]? Or that Ford trucks were being built for the German occupation troops in France with authorization from Dearborn, Michigan? Or that Colonel Sosthenes Behn, the head of the international American telephone conglomerate ITT, flew from New York to Madrid to Berne during the war to help improve Hitler's communications systems and improve the robot bombs that devastated London? Or that ITT built the Fockewulfs that dropped bombs on Brit-ish and American troops? Or that crucial ball bearings were shipped to Naziassociated customers in Latin America with the collusion of the vice-chairman of the US War Production Board in partnership with Goering's cousin in Philadelphia when American forces were desperately short of them? Or that such arrangements were known about in Washington and either sanctioned or deliberately ignored?

Charles Higham
author of Trading with The Enemy

The Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941 enabled USA to enter the war in Europe, a war that the White House wished to enter for strategic reasons but could not, owing to the opposition of the American public and the Congress. It may, therefore, be of deep interest to know as to how it was that the Japanese were able to launch a "surprise" attack on Hawaii on December 7, 1941. The question is particularly relevant in the post 9/11 world.

Fortunately, researchers have been able to uncover the terrible truth behind this attack as a result of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). A "treasure trove" of documented evidence implicating the then President Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR) and a coterie of confidantes with pre-planned provocation and foreknowledge of the Japanese attack was uncovered. The documents were hidden away in naval vaults and were concealed from nine Congressional inquiries, including the last one held during Clinton's Presidency in 1995.

FDR was a Democrat. Republicans were immediately suspicious that the authorities knew about the attack but allowed it to happen in order to change the climate of public opinion in favor of entering the war in Europe. But it was only on December 7, 1999 that researcher Robert B Stinnett, who himself fought in the Pacific theater during WW II, published a book in which he presented irrefutable documentary evidence, not only confirming these doubts, but also showing that the attack resulted from preplanned and sustained provocation spread over a period of more than a year. The book[1] Day of Deceit: The Truth about FDR and Pearl Harbor represented seventeen years of persistent effort.

The trail begins with a letter written by Lt. Commander Arthur H.McCollum, Head of the Far East section of the Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI) to FDR's two most trusted advisers in the White House on October 7, 1940, fourteen months before the Japanese attack. A photograph of this letter, which he uncovered on January 24, 1995, is reproduced in Stinnett's book.

The two advisers were Captains Walter S Anderson, Director ONI at the White House, with direct access to FDR, and Dudley W. Knox a naval strategist and chief of ONI library. After summarizing the strategic dangers that the situation in Europe posed to US interests, the letter suggested an eight-point plan of provoking the Japanese into attacking Pearl Harbor. McCollum had seized upon a treaty between Japan, Germany and Italy, signed only ten days earlier, on September 27, 1940, whereby an attack on any one of the countries would be considered an attack on all three.

The eight point plan is reproduced below[2]

9. It is believed that in the present state of political opinion the United States Government is capable of declaring war gainst Japan without more ado; and it is barely possible that vigorous action on our part might lead the Japanese to modify their attitude. Therefore, the following course of action is suggested:
A. Make an arrangement with Britain for the use of British bases in the Pacific, particularly Singapore.
B. Make an arrangement with Holland for the use of base facilities and acquisition of supplies in the Dutch East Indies.
C. Give all possible aid to the Chinese Government of Chiang-Kai-Shek
D. Send a division of long range heavy cruisers to the Orient, Phillipines, or Singapore.
E. Send two divisions of submarines to the Orient.
F. Keep the main strength of the U.S. fleet now in the Pacific in the vicinity of Hawaiian islands.
G. Insist that the Dutch refuse to grant Japanese demands for undue economic concessions, particularly oil.
H. Completely embargo all U.S. trade with Japan, in collaboration with a similar embargo imposed by the British Empire.

The aim of keeping the strength of the Pacific fleet around Hawaii, and of sending long range cruisers as well as submarine divisions to the Orient, was to create a sinister ambiguity that the US was preparing to attack Japan. The letter ended with the following sentences:
10. If by these means Japan could be led to commit an overt act of war so much the better. In any case we should be prepared to accept the threat of war.

On October 8, the very next day, FDR held a three-hour meeting with Admiral Richardson, Commander in Chief of the US naval fleet. When Admiral Richardson heard the proposal he was outraged: "Mr. President senior officers of the Navy do not have the trust and confidence of the civilian leadership of this country that is essential for a successful prosecution of the war in the Pacific," he said[3]. His refusal to go along with Roosevelt cost him his career. He was relieved of his command in February 1941 by restructuring the U.S. Navy. The Navy was split into two fleets, the Atlantic Fleet and the Pacific Fleet. Command of the Pacific Fleet was given to a relatively junior officer Admiral Husband E Kimmel. Richardson also quoted the President as having said[4] "Sooner or later the Japanese would commit an overt act against the United States and the nation would be willing to enter the war". The phrase "overt act" was a reproduction of McCollum's phrase.

Stinnett observes[5]:

As McCollum's eight action proposals began to be applied, relations with Japan deteriorated. With the New Year, three of his actions were in place: Action E, the dispatch of twenty-four U.S. Navy submarines to Manila; Action F, retaining the U.S. Fleet in Hawaiian waters; and Action G, the Dutch now refusing to supply Japan with oil and raw materials. Navy intelligence detected the new Japanese attitude from an intercepted diplomatic radio messages sent by Foreign Minister Yosuke Matsuoka on January 30, 1941: "In view of the critical situation between the two countries we must be prepared for the worst." Matsuoka directed his ambassador in Washington to change from what he called publicity and propaganda work and establish an espionage-gathering network within the United States.

Documentary evidence uncovered by Stinnett establishes that each of the eight points suggested by McCollum was acted upon in the subsequent days. In particular Stinnett links FDR directly to at least six of the eight proposals. He writes [6]:

President Roosevelt can be directly linked to ... six of McCollum's proposed actions: namely Actions B and G, curtailing Japanese access to natural resources of Southeast Asia - for he met with Dutch officials and received Japanese intercepts concerning Japan- Dutch negotiations in 1940-41; Action C, aid to China: FDR directed the Administration's China strategy which antagonized Japan's leaders who were engaged in war with China. On September 25, 1940, the administration approved a $25 million loan to China's U.S.-recognized government headed by Generalissimo Chiang-Kai-Shek. ...
The conclusive evidence that links FDR or high-level administration officials to the eightaction proposals is as follows: Action A: Arrange for U.S. use of British Pacific Bases. Arrangements were made for U.S. use of Rabaul's Simpson Harbor, a British possession in New Britain in South Pacific, as USN Advance Pacific Base F. Orders came from Admiral Harold Stark, FDR's Chief of Naval Operations.

The most dangerous provocation was deployment of warships in or close to Japanese territorial waters. FDR himself took charge of these provocations - "pop-up" cruises as he called them. Stinnett quotes FDR [7]:

I just want them to keep popping up here and there and keep the Japs guessing, I don't mind losing one or two cruisers, but do not take a chance of losing five or six.

Stinnett further writes [8]:

Documentation that directly links FDR with McCollum's Action D - sending US Navy cruisers in provocative moves against Japan includes the following first discussion in the White House Feb 10, 1941. Present were President Roosevelt, Secretary of State Cordell Hull, Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson, Secretary of Navy Frank Knox, General George Marshall, Army Chief of Staff and Admiral Harold R. Stark, Chief of Navy Operations. Stark warned FDR that the cruises "will precipitate hostilities."

Stinnett writes [9]:

From March through July 1941, White House records show that FDR ignored international law and dispatched naval task groups into Japanese waters on three such pop-up cruises.

Although Admiral Kimmel, Admiral Pacific Fleet, objected by saying that this could precipitate war, he did not know that this was precisely FDR's intention. He wrote to Admiral Harold R. Stark that he "fought" to prevent the "ill advised pop-up cruises.", expressing the apprehension "but the decision may go against me may go against me." [10]

Stinnett further writes:

Action E: "Send US submarines to the Orient." See letter re dispatch of US subs to Manila, from Admiral Harold Stark to Admiral James O Richardson, Nov 12, 1940 PHPT 14, p 971, and US Assistant Secretary of State Breckenridge Long, War Diary p 155. Long writes that twelve submarines were sent from Honolulu to Manila. Action F: Retain the US Fleet in Hawaiian waters. See discussion in this and following chapters. See the transcript of Oval Office audio tape of October 4, 1940, 48-61:1 (1) and (2) FDRL, in which President Roosevelt can be heatrd discussing "fool things that Japan might do." ...
Action H: A complete embargo of Japan. A total embargo was issued by the President on July 26, 1941. See Executive Order 8832, Federal Register this date in National Archives I, 7th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue,Washington.

In a most significant development, US cryptographers were able to decipher two principal Japanese codes - the diplomatic code and the naval code. This happened in the last days of September and early October 1940. The diplomatic code is also known as the Purple code. Stinnett states [11]:

Leading historical publications in the United States have erroneously confused readers by publishing erroneous details on Purple. The truth about Pearl Harbor is found in the naval codes not the diplomatic codes. ...
Controversy surrounds the timing of the successful decryption of the four code systems of Kaigun Ango. Testimony given to various Pearl Harbor investigations suggests that the navy codes were not solved until Spr-ing 1942. The author's research proves otherwise. Their solution emerged in the early fall of 1940, at about the same time Arthur McCollum's memorandum reached the Oval office.

In fact after Stinnett published his book some court historians, commentators and reviewers attacked him. As one reviewer, John F. McKeown, wrote: "I am not surprised by the negative treatment that this book has received. If the author had treated any other topic, or any other President, the comments would be different. This historian has attacked one very, very, sacred cow."
Stinnett further points out [12]:

Rear Admiral Royal Ingersoll, Assistant Chief of Naval Operations, revealed America's ability to detect and predict Japan's naval war strategy and tactical operations to the US Navy's two Pacific commanders, Admirals James Ricahrdson and Thomas Hart in a letter dated October 4, 1940. The Navy began tracking the movement and location of Japanese warships in October 1940. "Every major movement of the Orange (America's codename for Japan) Fleet has been predicted, and a continuous flow of information concerning Orange diplomatic activities has been made available." He said the Navy cryptographers had solved the Japanese naval merchant ship code. "The system itself is 99 percent readable," reported Ingersoll.

There are a very large number of documents that reveal that the US stations in the Pacific region were able to intercept the dominant percentage of secret Japanese diplomatic and naval transmissions once these codes had been broken. There was other intelligence available too. In fact, in January 1941 information about a plan to attack Pearl Harbor was leaked to US intelligence. Stinnett has reproduced this information in his book. In fact the U.S. ambassador to Germany Joseph Grew sent the following telegraph that was read by Cordell Hull on January 27, 1941 [13]:

My Peruvian colleague told a member of my staff that he had heard from many sources including a Japanese source that the Japanese military forces planned in the event of trouble with the United States, to attempt a surprise attack on Pearl Harbor using all of their military facilities. He added that although the project seemed fantastic the fact that he had heard it from many sources prompted him to pass the information. Grew

Cordell Hull distributed copies of the telegram to Army Intelligence and to ONI. McCollum, who worked at the ONI, and who had written down the strategy of provoking a Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, must have been satisfied with this information. Things were moving as he had planned. However he engaged in a further deception - he dismissed Grew's information as "rumor"! His assessment of the Grew cable was an outright deception - he was deceiving his own Admiral! He wrote to Admiral Kimmel [14]:

The Division of Naval Intelligence places no credence in these rumors. Furthermore, based on known data regarding the present disposition of Japanese naval and army forces, no move against Pearl Harbor appears imminent or planned for in the foreseeable future.

The record shows that once the US and the British Empire began strangulating the Japanese economy through a boycott and through the Dutch, the militants in Japan very quickly gained the upper hand. The diplomats wanted to sort things out diplomatically but in late 1940 and early 1941 Japanese plans for launching a surprise attack on Pearl Harbor were formulated by Admiral Yamamoto.

Stinnett writes that the intercepts and corresponding radio logs of station H in Hawaii, one of the several stations that monitored Japanese signal traffic are [15]:

powerful evidence of American fore-knowledge of the attack on Pearl Harbor. Americans do not know these records exist - all were excluded from the many investigations that took place from 1941 to 1946 and the Congressional probe of 1995.

Stinnett reproduces many messages that unambiguously establish the US foreknowledge of the attack.

There is another cruel side to this deceit. Once Richardson had been removed and Admiral Kimmel installed, Anderson was dispatched to Hawaii as an intelligence gatekeeper. He was well aware of the fact that the US had broken Japanese naval and diplomatic codes but concealed it from Admiral Kimmel, who subsequently paid a heavy price once the attacks had taken place. Kimmel had sensed in February 1941 that he was being excluded from some vital intelligence loop and tried in writing, on at least two occasions, to persuade the establishment to supply him with all vital information. "I can't understand, may never understand why I was denied the information available in Washington", Kimmel wrote sadly after the war. [16]

In November, and during the days of December 1941 leading right up to the attack, the US cryptographers were aware of the impending Japanese attacks. But the key records remained concealed from every inquiry until Stinnett uncovered them. A vital player in this game of concealment was the cryptographer Lt. Commander Joseph J. Rochefort, who withheld vital information from Kimmel and from various Pearl Harbor inquiries [17]. Stinnett recovered some of this vital information from Rocherfort's personal effects in possession of his daughter. In his Oral History, Rocherfort told a navy interviewer that the death of a few thousand people was a cheap price to pay for the unification of America. Stinnett writes [18]:

By hiding Yale Maxon's alert, Rochefort diverted a thorough examination of the Sarnoff- Roosevelt spy-message deal and made it impossible for Admiral Kimmel to establish a logical defense of dereliction of duty. The blame for dereliction of duty belongs on the shoulders of the two cryptographers, not on Admiral Kimmel. Rochefort's motive can only be guessed. In his Oral History he told a U.S. Navy interviewer that the carnage at Pearl Harbor on December 7 was a cheap price to pay for the unification of America. His unity observation observation parallels that of his close friend Arthur McCollum's eight-action plan that called for America to create "ado" and provoke Japan into committing an overt act of war against the United States.

Although everything had been done by a coterie [19] not only to conceal information from, but also to mislead the Pearl Harbor naval and military command, there still was a possibility that reconnaissance planes, or merchant vessels, would discover the advancing Japanese naval fleet prompting some measures by Kimmel. Although he had been cut out of the vital intelligence loop regarding the Japanese attack Kimmel nonetheless planned an exercise, Exercise 191, from November 21-25, 1940. This could have led U.S. forces to meet, even if unexpectedly, the approaching Japanese forces. But he was forced at the last moment to cancel the exercise on the orders of his superiors. The orders were conveyed through Rear Admiral Ingersoll. As Stinnett remarks [20]:

At that time, of course, Kimmel did not know of Washington' eight-action policy. If McCollum's action policy was to succeed in uniting America, Japan must be seen as the aggressor and must commit the first overt act of war on an unsuspecting Pacific Fleet, not the other way around. FDR and his highestlevel commanders gambled on Japan committing the first overt act of war, and knew from intercepted messages that it was near. An open sea engagement between Japan's carrier force and the Pacific Fleet would have been far less effective at establishing American outrage. Japan could claim that its right to sail the open seas had been deliberately challenged by American warship if Kimmel attacked first.

He was ordered to call off this exercise at the last minute on the pretext that such an exercise would be interpreted as a provocation by Japan. This was strange because the Japanese were already on their way to Hawaii. However Kimmel immediately planned two new missions [21] "intended to discover a Japanese carrier force." These missions were announced on November 24. However these missions were sabotaged under directions of Admiral Stark on November 26. Admiral Stark ordered that aircraft carriers be used instead of battleships as originally planned. However a delivery of eighteen fighter planes for the exercise was delayed by a week and were in fact never delivered! And then another mysterious and confounding order [22] was issued to Kimmel. He was directed to move all modern ships, twenty one in number, as well as the aircraft carriers, out of Pearl Harbor [23] westwards i.e. in a direction away from the advancing Japanese fleet. Only the oldest vessels, mostly "27-year-old relics" surviving from World War I, were to remain in Pearl Harbor!

The situation has been summed up by Stinnett in the following words [24]:

With the recall of the Pacific Fleet from the North Pacific on November 24 and the cessation of aerial reconnaissance over the ocean, America had no effective means of locating the advance of an enemy force on Hawaii except through the intercepts obtained by the monitoring stations. But the cryptographic reports obtained by station CAST and H did not appear in the Daily Communications Summaries shown to Kimmel in 1941.

Stinnett has shown a photograph of the cryptographer Captain Homer Kisner nearly a half century later, holding a copy of the daily chronology of December 6, 1941 in which he had stated that the Japanese had taken the "first steps towards placing the operations of the Navy on a wartime basis." Apparently all cryptographers were required to keep a personal copy of the daily chronology. Kisner had tracked Japanese ship movements and had located them. The documenation of Japanese naval movements from November 18 to 20 is particularly "compelling" according to Stinnett. Stinnett writes [25]:

Kisner was excluded from every Pearl Harbor investigation, including the 1995 inquiry. His first public comments on the pre-Pearl Harbor communications intelligence were made to the author in April 1988 when he examined the intercepts contained in the President Carter document release. Kisner confirmed their authenticity. ...
In an interview in 1998, Kisner, then eightyeight years old, was shown McCollum's memo by the author. His reaction to proposal F was the same as Admiral Richardson's - disbelief and outrage: "No one in the Navy would deliberately place warships and sailors in harm's way. If I had known of the plan, I'd have gone direct to Admiral Kimmel and warned him"

In order to forestall any possibility that a chance discovery of the advancing Japanese naval fleet might lead Kimmel to act against them, a message [26] was sent by FDR to Kimmel on November 28: "If hostilities cannot be avoided the United States desires that Japan commit the first overt act." This was FDR's response to a November 25 alert sent by Admiral Kimmel. Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson wrote in his diaries later [27]:

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.

These diary entries further establish that the U.S. authorities knew of the impending attack and allowed it to happen because they wanted the American people to feel that they had been attacked. Such thinking was not an adjustment to a sudden realization that Japan was going to attack Pearl Harbor - it was the result of planned forethought.

The attitude of FDR with regard to Kimmel and Short was not very honorable. He told Donovan [28]:

They caught our ships like lame ducks! Lame ducks Bill. We told them at Pearl Harbor and everywhere else, to have the lookouts manned. But they still took us by surprise.

This was a lie. The fact is that FDR knew of the attack and had planned the provocations that led to the attack. That is why Bill Donovan observed that FDR was less surprised by the attack than the others ad welcomed it. FDR tied Kimmel's hands in every possible way, left him in the dark and then discredited him in the public eye. No wonder the families of Admiral Kimmel and General Short have, for decades, pursued the case for honorable restoration of these officers. It was, finally, in May 1999, that the Senate, by a narrow split margin, voted that Kimmel and Short "were denied vital intelligence that was available in Washington." [29] Some justice was done

The story runs as follows:

The Senate voted today to clear the names of the two senior military officers who were accused of dereliction of duty as a result of the bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941. The vote came after an emotional debate among the dwindling number of World War II veterans left in the Senate.

The vote, 52 to 47 on an amendment to the $289 billion military spending bill, was intended to exonerate Adm. Husband E. Kimmel and Lieut. Gen. Walter C. Short, the American military commanders in Hawaii who were blamed for failing to anticipate the devastating Japanese attack on Dec. 7, 1941.

After the surprise attack, the two men were relieved of their commands and forced to retire from the military at reduced ranks, their reputations in tatters. A panel created by President Franklin D. Roosevelt accused them of dereliction of duty. Both died decades ago.

58 years after Kimmel demanded that he be given access to all intelligence pertaining to the Japanese forces.

The concealment of certain facts from the various inquiries was the result of a deliberate policy by senior naval officers. This concealment lasted for over five decades and, at one point, was carried out in violation of the orders of President Truman showing how the military men pursue their own policies independent of the orders and/or desires of the competent civilian authority. Stinnett refers to this concealment as the "cryptology blackout". The reasons the cryptology blackout was enforced by senior naval officers were apparently two fold. Firstly the failure to conceal the fact that the U.S. cryptologists had broken both, the diplomatic and naval codes by Oct 1940, the same time at which the eight-action plan to provoke Japan was put forward, would have directly proved that the U.S. had engaged in a policy of provocation and that the Government knew before hand that the attack would take place. Secondly certain naval officers did not want to reveal that the U.S. had indeed broken the Japanese codes, presumably for future, or at least during the war. This impression is strengthened by the fact that the FBI had spotted the activities of a Japanese spy, a diplomat, in Honolulu. Hoover wanted to have him arrested but the superior authorities resisted because "neither Berle nor the President wanted to lose the Japanese pipeline [30]. As Assistant Secretary of State Berle put it:"No expulsion is possible as any charge leading to ouster would reveal American cryptographic success to Japan." [31]

But in the 57 years since one of the nation's worst military disasters, a number of historians have described Admiral Kimmel and General Short as scapegoats for failures among military commanders in Washington who were aware of intelligence reports suggesting an imminent Japanese attack.

Under pressure from Senator Alben Barkley (D, Kentucky), Chairman Joint Congressional Investigation Committee (JOINT) of 1945-46, President Truman issued the following directive, easing the release of cryptographic information [32]:

The State, War and Navy Departments will make available to the Joint Committee on the Investigation of the Pearl Harbor attack, for such use as the Committee may determine, any information in their possession material to the investigation, and will respectively authorize any employee or member of the armed services whose testimony is desired by the Committee to testify publicly before the Committee concerning any matter pertinent to the investigation.

Despite this clear-cut directive Fleet Admiral Ernest King tried to block the testimony to the Committee regarding cryptographic information. He ordered that military personnel appearing before JOINT will be subjected to military discipline if they disclosed any cryptographic information. This came to the knowledge of President Truman who then issued the following protection order [33]:

The testimony of any person in the armed services, and the fact that such person testified before the committee herein provided for, shall not be sued against him in any court proceeding or held against him in examining military status for credits in the service to which he belongs.

Despite these orders the Navy was able to gag its cryptographers. As Stinnett puts it [34]:

But Fleet Admiral King prevailed. None of the Navy's intercept operators - the 165 members of the On the Roof Gang - testified. Not one of their military intercepts of Japanese naval broadcasts was introduced into evidence before the Committee. America's pre-Pearl Harbor success in obtaining, decrypting, and translating Japanese naval message in the 5- Num code was safe.
Most of the documents, evidence, and testimony heard by the JOINT were reproduced in the official 39-volume transcript. But the most important records involving communication intelligence were omitted. None of the Station US papers - which contain crucial Japanese military intercepts - were shown to Congress in either 1945-46 or the 1995 Pearl Harbor investigations.

Stinnett also describes how some crucial documents were rotting or decaying and disintegrating to dust because they had not been stored in proper safe boxes.
It was a four days after the attack that the cover up began and Rear Admiral Leigh Noyes told a group of subordinates: "Destroy all notes and anything in writing." This was an illegal order because even personal memoranda concerning naval matters cannot be destroyed without approval of the Congress. Fortunately, everything was not, and could not be, destroyed as key information was scattered over different places, including the White House. By this fortunate circumstance future generations have been able to know the truth about Pearl Harbor.
Immediately after the publication of Stinnett's book the US agencies and historians closely connected to them, moved in to confuse the public and to conceal documents that had been opened up under FOIA. It was in 1993 that the US Naval Security Group, which had in its custody what are known as the Crane Files, (these were so named because they were stored in vaults in Crane, Indiana) moved these to a government facility on the College Park campus of the University of Maryland. This was Archive II. However, as Stinnett wrote on December 7, 2003, once The Day of Deceit was published (December 7, 1999):

NSA began withdrawing the pre-Pearl Harbor documents from the Crane Files housed in Archives II. This means that the Government decided to continue 60 years of Pearl Harbor censorship. As of January 2002, over two dozen NSA withdrawal notices have triggered the removal of Pearl Harbor documents from public inspection. The number of pages withdrawn appear to be in hundreds.

Why remove documents a decade after they had been opened to the public? Under the agreement with National Archives, NSA has the right to withdraw documents if their presence in National Archives can lead to defense concerns. What defense concerns could there be sixty years after the events except that the truth must be concealed from the public - otherwise the present phase of US militarism would also be called into question.

One cannot help quoting Professor Peter Dale Scott:

The chronological record of events as reconstructed by archival historians has become increasingly subverted by suppressed or deep history. We now have a chronology for which the public records are either nonexistent or have been falsified.


[1] Robert B. StinnettDay of Deceit: The Truth about FDR and Pearl Harbor; The Free Press 2000

[2] McCollum's letter is reproduced on pages 262- 265 of Stinnett's book. In fact Stinnett used a camera to photograph many of the important documents that he was able to uncover, and has printed some of these in his book.

[3] Ibid, p 10

[4] Ibid p 11; also p 41

[5] Ibid, p 28, 29

[6] Ibid p 311-313

[7] Ibid p 311-313

[8] Ibid p 311-313

[9] Ibid p 9

[10] Ibid p 313

[11] Ibid p 21, 22

[12] Ibid p 22, 23

[13] Ibid, p 31

[14] Ibid, p 32

[15] Ibid p 45

[16] Kimmel cited from his book I May Never Understand by Stinnett p 37

[17] Stinnett lists the following inquiries (footnote 17, p 341): "(1) Roberts Commission proceedings 1942; (2) Admiral Thomas Hart's inquiry of 1944; (3) Army Proceedings 1944; (4) Navy Court of Inquiry, 1944; (5) Clarke Investigation, 1944; (6) The Clausen Investigation 1944-45; (7) Admiral Henry Kent Hewitt Investigation of 1945; (8) The Joint Congressional Investigation of 1945-46, and (9) Senator Strom Thurmond's investigation of 1995.

[18] Ibid p 117

[19] On p 312, footnote 10, of his book Stinnett states: "The following (and probably more) knew of McCollum's eight-action policy that was adopted by FDR, according to direct and indirect evidence outlined herein: President Roosevelt; Lieutenant Commander Arthur H. McCollum, CaptainsWalter S. Anderson and Dudley Knox; Admirals Harold Stark, James O Richardson, and William Leahy; General George Marshall: Commander Vincent Murphy."

[20] Ibid p151

[21] Ibid p 151

[22] Ibid p 152, 154

[23] Ibid p 152, 154

[24] Ibid p 156

[25] Ibid 57

[26] Ibid p 172

[27] Ibid p 179

[28] Cited by Stinnett, p 3

[29] Philip Shenon: Senate Clears 2 Pearl Harbor 'Scapegoats' : New York Times, May 26, 2012. scapegoats.html

[30] Ibid p 97

[31] Ibid p 97

[32] Ibid p 270

[33] Ibid p 270

[34] Ibid p 270, 271

Read Article (Pdf format)