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Remembering Pearl Harbor
By Ernest Stewart
"There was never a good war, or a bad peace." ~~~ Benjamin Franklin
Back in the early 90's, a English Naval Captain finally let the cat out of the bag; and since then, more and more information has come out about the Pearl Harbor attack. A former staffer at England's decrypt headquarters, Bletchley Park, enlightened us all. Bletchley Park was the central site of the United Kingdom's Government Code and Cypher School -- where, in 1939, they broke the Japanese Naval secret code, and continued to break it every time a new one came out. They broke the latest version in March of 1941, and passed it along to us in May of 1941; so, we not only were reading the Japanese embassy codes, but their naval codes, as well. Thus, we knew well in advance of their plans for attacking Pearl Harbor.
Pearl Harbor was a set up by FDR to get us into WWII. You may recall the US Pacific Fleet's base had been moved from its traditional home in San Diego, California, to Pearl Harbor in May 1940; so all of the talk by FDR about keeping us all out of the war was just political rhetoric for the 1940 election. FDR had made up his mind the year before to bring us into the war and save England from the Germans. In fact, the long-term basing at Pearl Harbor was so strongly opposed by its commander, Admiral James O. Richardson, that he personally protested in Washington. Political considerations were thought sufficiently important that he was relieved by Yes-Man Admiral Husband E. Kimmel, who was in command at the time of the attack on Pearl Harbor.
For obvious reasons we pretended we only broke the code in the spring of 1942 when it was more than obvious we had to know the code for the battle of Midway. The fleet that arrived in Pearl Harbor was made up entirely of moth-balled, outdated WWI battleships, with one exception: the USS Tennessee, commissioned in 1920. All the good battleships were transferred to the Atlantic Fleet and were therefore safe. While the channel was dredged to the depth of 45 ft, Pearl Harbor was chosen as most of the harbor was merely 20 or 25 feet deeper that what the ships drew in depth; so all the ships that were sunk, even the Arizona sank, into the mud, leaving their superstructure well above the water line. The original thought was the harbor was too shallow for torpedo attack from the air. Only the battleship Oklahoma rolled over on its side. They were all soon raised and went on to fight in the war within 6 months except the Arizona that had her keel broken. Her guns and her superstructure were removed -- which is why she is slightly underwater and can be clearly seen from the surface.
You may also recall the three aircraft carriers stationed at Pearl were missing that day, even though they would've normally been in port -- a lucky thing, huh? No, we knew when the attack was coming, and moved them out of the way, as we also knew that the Battleship had seen its day, and that carriers were where it's at. So, if we lost a bunch of out-of-date, pretty much useless ships for our chance to rule the world, so be it -- cheap at twice the price!
The death toll was about 2500, most of which were on the Arizona and another 1000 or so wounded. We had 18 ships sunk, all of which, with the exception of the Arizona, were soon raised and sent into battle; we also lost about 300 airplanes, most of which were as outdated as were the battleships. All in all a small price to pay for world domination!
You'll recall that we came upon the world stage in 1898 with another excuse, Y'all remember the Battleship Maine? A ship that blew up in Havana Harbor when a coal bunker fire was allowed to get out of control, and blew up the powder room next door -- which we blamed on the Spanish and went ahead and took their empire for ourselves. Nor should we forget the Gulf of Tonkin, where LBJ manufactured false flag attacks by Vietnam on a couple of US destroyers. He then used it as an excuse to get at all that lovely oil and rubber and minerals the French had discovered, developed, and abandoned after the Vietnamese had thrown them out in 1954. I could go on and on with other examples: remember the Alamo, remember Saddam's WMDs? But you get the picture!
12-18-1943 ~ 12-02-2014
Thanks for the hot sax!
05-12-1945 ~ 12-03-2014
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Until the next time, Peace!
(c) 2014 Ernest Stewart a.k.a. Uncle Ernie is an unabashed radical, author, stand-up comic, DJ, actor, political pundit and for 13 years was the managing editor and publisher of Issues & Alibis magazine. Visit me on Facebook. Follow me on Twitter.