Pearl Harbor: What Really Happened & Why It Still Matters. Podcast of December 8 Show

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I couldn’t help but notice how little coverage the 72d anniversary of Pearl Harbor got in the news this weekend, so I dedicated yesterday’s show to that sad day.

In rummaging through my father’s things after his death, I came across a wealth of books from the period. He was a sailor in the Pacific during World War II and was fascinated by the subject. Unlike the books you pull from the New York Times bestsellers list, however, these books did not toe the party line. As a matter of fact, one very scholarly treatment of the subject in my father’s collection laid out what I found to be an irrefutable case that FDR provoked and then allowed the attack on Pearl Harbor.

That book is called Back Door to War, The Roosevelt Foreign Policy 1933-1941. It was written in 1952 by Charles Tansill, Professor of American Diplomatic History at Georgetown University. Tansill did most of his research in the State Department Archives and documents all his facts and findings. Here are references both to this book and some other material I mentioned (or should have mentioned) on the show…

*For a specific citation of interest, please see my comment to this post.

Here is a short video concerning Pearl Harbor by the great Professor Robert Higgs, of the equally great Independent Institute.

A listener called in and mentioned a newer book he read on the subject called Day of Deceit, by Robert Stinnett. When I mentioned I read mixed reviews on that one, he rightly pointed out that negative reviews are sometimes planted to discredit threatening history. If you think that’s paranoid, read up on cognitive infiltration as established by Cass Sunstein under the first Obama administration.

Another book that offers an unconventional view of World War II from an unassailably conservative source is Pat Buchanan’s Churchill, Hitler, and “The Unnecessary War”: How Britain Lost Its Empire and the West Lost the World.

A book I mentioned on the air that claims that General Patton was killed to cover up the Allied conspiracy to give Russia Eastern Europe after the war is called Target Patton, The Plot to Assassinate General George S. Patton, by Robert K. Wilcox. I brought this up primarily to point out that the number one argument I hear against any conspiracy is that it could never be kept quiet. My answer is that they are kept quiet in three ways: whistleblowers are killed (like General Patton supposedly was), they are discredited (like Susan Lindauer was – see below), and others are scared off by witnessing the killing or discrediting of those who went before (i.e., they saw “the squirrels nailed to the tree.”)

In addition, here are four very easy-to-read books, three of them fiction, that I enjoyed and recommend if you are in the mood for World War II stuff.

My opinion of Churchill has changed dramatically over the years. I used to have cats named Winston and Clementine and always toasted “the Prime Minister” on his birthday, November 30. Over time, however, I had to resolve my cognitive dissonance with respect to Churchill on everything from his attitude and participation in the Boer War to his decision to kill 25,000 civilians in the bombing of Dresden, and finally concluded that Churchill was no doubt a warrior for the British Empire, but that doesn’t make him an American hero. Churchill: A Life, written by Martin Gilbert, an accomplished English historian, does portray him a hero, just FYI; but it is short yet comprehensive and a pleasure to read.

Here are three novels by Herman Wouk that are well worth reading. The Caine Mutiny was just plain great – one of my favorite novels ever. (Funny aside about this book: my mother read this book when it first came out in 1951. She had just had her first baby and found herself rocking him with her foot as she devoured the book – she simply could not put it down! After she finished it, she vowed never to read a novel again until she was finished having babies. Considering she had eight more after that first one, I’m guessing she got WAY behind on her reading, but I knew Caine Mutiny was one for the ages, and indeed it is.)

The Winds of War is both a pleasure to read and an education of the period, but it’s War and Remembrance that one of the caller’s comments brought to my mind. In that novel, Wouk follows an intelligent and sophisticated Jewish professor who tells himself the killing of Jews in Germany is just a paranoid delusion – as the caller put it, “a conspiracy theory.” He tells himself this even as he is naked in a chamber and pellets begin to drop. It’s really a terrible and sad book, but Wouk wrote it for the same reason we should read it – to understand, to remember and to learn.

I also referred to the sinking of the USS Indianapolis and the court martial and ultimate suicide of Captain Charles McVay. This book is truly the saddest book I ever read, but it was good and important.

Here’s why it still matters:
We are continuing our pattern of false flags and provocations to get America into wars her people don’t want. To those who defend FDR for tricking us into WWII and sacrificing US lives in the process, I ask them, would you have Obama provoke and then allow an attack by Syria on our ships off her coast and sacrifice thousands of sailors in the process just so we could create a massive conflagration in the Middle East and change the governments of Syria and Iran? It matters what we let our government get away with. As Churchill rightly noted, history is written by the victors, by which he surely meant that you can do what you want as long as you win. The video below brings it all into the here and now. (If you’re in a hurry start at 2:49.)

Susan Lindauer is a CIA Whistleblower who claimed that Libya was not responsible for the Lockerbie bombing but rather that the CIA blew up the plane to cover up some intel. She further claimed that Qadaffi was threatening to kick American oil companies out of Libya if this issue wasn’t resolved, e.g., reparations repaid, the convicted Lockerbie bomber returned to Libya (which he was), etc. Finally, Lindauer holds that Qadaffi was overthrown as a direct result of these actions and threats. Rather than prosecute Lindauer for treason, the US government held her in a psychiatric institution, deemed her unfit to stand trial and let her go. She continues to blow the whistle on covert activities by the CIA. My only concern about Lindauer is that I think it’s always wise to think “once CIA always CIA” and to view CIA whistleblowers as potentially still working for the CIA in the interest of “cognitive infiltration,” a tactic recommended by Cass Sunstein to discredit truthers.


  1. Hugh says:

    I’m reading “The Creature from Jekyll Island” now, about a third of the way through. I’ve only had the book since April of 1995 when I attended a lecture by the author out in California. The book reads like it was written yesterday. My reading pile of unread books is immense. “Tragedy and Hope” is in it. God Bless Monica for discussing the topics she selects. They are so gravely important.

  2. Anonymous says:

    A listener emailed with recommendations: “”The Imperial Cruise” James Bradley provides sad background to the entire saga. Also suggest “Lusitania” Colin Simpson about US entry into WW One. Then there’s “Theodore & Woodrow” Judge Andrew Napolitano. “Tragedy and Hope” Carroll Quigley. “The Creature from Jekyll Island” Griffin and “The Shadows of Power” James Perloff…..this last is guaranteed to make you angry. As Napoleon is quoted- History is a pack of lies everyone agrees with. Read those and you’ll be wiser but not very happy.”

    and from another post: “Please try to read the William Stevenson book on “A Man Called Intrepid” about the real life story of the man who both Roosevelt and Churchill depended upon to provide secret war. This was the beginning of the OSS and finally CIA. The Publisher was Harcourt Brace Jovanovich in 1971. This was when all the new information was made available in 1971. The second book I suggest is The Rising Sun by John Toland Random House 1970. It fully describes the situation within the Empire beginning in 1890. Leading up to the start of the Pearl Harbor attack.”

  3. Monica Perez ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    I mentioned on the show that the Japanese tried to negotiate peace as late as January 1941 but to no avail. This claim was challenged on my facebook page, so I thought I would share my reference for this with you and let you decide whether or not the effort was sincere. This is from Tansill’s Back Door to War, pp. 628-629.

    In November 1940, Japan Foreign Minister Matsuoka asked Bishop James E. Walsh, Superior General of the Catholic Foreign Mission society of Maryknoll, NY, and Fr. JM Drought of the same order to undertake a mission to Washington to impress upon FDR that the Japanese Govt “wished to negotiate a peace agreement: (1) An agreement to nullify their participation in the Axis Pact…(2) a guarantee to recall all military forces from China and to restore to China its geographical and political integrity.” Bishop Walsh and Fr. Drought then had a conference with General Muto, the director of the Central Bureau of Military Affairs, who assured them that “he and his associates in the Japanese Army were in accord with the efforts to reach a peace agreement.” Walsh & Drought went to Washington and met with FDR and Secretary of State Hull on January 23, 1941, for two hours. They were told the matter would be “taken under advisement.” (Citation: the Far Eastern Military Tribunal Exhibit No 3441, pp 32979-85.)

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