Skip to comments.STRIKE TO HALT COAL MINES TODAY AS PARLEYS END WITHOUT AGREEMENT (11/17/41)
Posted on 11/17/2011 4:54:20 AM PST by Homer_J_Simpson
* Quarterly feature to follow evolution of American reading habits. The Keys of the Kingdom is still doing well. It is #1 in seven of the twelve markets surveyed. Saratoga Trunk is emerging as the next big thing. Berlin Diary, is still topping the charts in the General category. Here are the earlier lists. They are near the end of the post in each case.
Nazis to exploit occupied Soviet lands
Monday, November 17, 1941 www.onwar.com
Alfred RosenbergIn Berlin... Hitler appoints Rosenberg, the Nazi ideologist to head the new Reich Ministry for Occupied Eastern Territories. His mandate is to remove “undesirable elements” and to exploit the areas for German economic benefit. He will issue orders which involve the extermination of local populations, seizing of all goods and assets from the occupied areas.
On the Eastern Front... The First Panzer Group continues its advances near Rostov, however, the Soviet 9th and 37th Armies under General Timoshenko, begin a counterattack on the flank of the German drive.
November 17th, 1941
Escort carrier HMS Archer commissioned.
Minesweeper HMS Stornoway commissioned. (Dave Shirlaw)
GERMANY: Rosenberg is appointed to head The Reich Ministry for Occupied Eastern territories. This ministry is new and has jurisdiction over the Baltic states and White Russia. The mission is to exploit them for German economic benefit while ridding them of “undesirable elements” such as Jews and Communists. Rosenberg is the Nazi Party “expert” for racial matters.
After a series of arguments with Luftwaffe Field Marshal Erhard Milch, and disgraced by air failures in the east, the former air ace Ernst Udet commits suicide.
GERMANY: U-660 is launched. (Dave Shirlaw)
FINLAND: In northern Finland, Maj. Gen. Hjalmar Siilasvuo, CO of the III Corps, orders his corps to halt all offensive operations. Siilasvuo’s corps is subordinated to the German 20th Mountain Army, and had been involved in succesful offensive operations, advancing towards Louhi. However, political considerations came to play.
Despite Siilasvuo’s formal subordination to Germans, he always verifies his orders with Mannerheim. Lately the Western Allies had put lot of pressure on Finland not to cut the Murmansk railway. Capturing Louhi would achieve just that. On 6 Nov Mannerheim confidentially told Siilasvuo that it is better Louhi is not captured. Siilasvuo naturally could not let the Germans know the true reasons for calling the advance to halt, thus the decision is justified by stiffening Soviet resistance. (Mikko Härmeinen)
U.S.S.R.: The advance of the German 1st Panzer Group continues near Rostov. General Timoshenko begins a counterattack on the flank of the German column.
EGYPT: German intercept stations report complete radio silence from the British. (Jay Stone)
Early on during their 3rd patrol, U-331 dropped off 8 commandos on the Egyptian coast east of Ras Gibeisa. Their mission was to blow up a railway near the coast, but they did not succeed. (Dave Shirlaw)
CHINA: The Nationalist leader, Chiang Kai-Shek, calls for the western democracies to take action against Japan.
JAPAN: Foreign Minister Shigenori Togo said an amicable conclusion of Japan’s negotiations with the United States was by no means impossible. (Dave Shirlaw)
HMC ML 053 commissioned.
Corvette HMCS Midland commissioned. (Dave Shirlaw)
U.S.A.: Ambassador Kurusu told President Roosevelt Germany had not requested Japan to fight. Sections 2, 3, and 6 of the Neutrality Act of 1939 repealed by Public Law 294. Ambassador Grew warned the United States of the inability of the Embassy to warn of Japanese attack.
Congress amends Neutrality Act to allow US merchant ships to be armed. Navy’s Bureau of Navigation directs Navy personnel with Armed Guard training to be assigned for further training before going to Armed Guard Centers for assignment to merchant ships.
Light fleet carrier USS Cowpens laid down.
Minesweepers USS Speed, Steady, Strive and Sustain laid down. (Dave Shirlaw)
"Eight Warsaw, Poland, Jews, including six women, are executed for leaving the ghetto without permission.
The executioners, pressed into service, are Polish policemen.
"The gate of Theresienstadt's Small Fortress bore the Nazi slogan ARBEIT MACHT FREI ("Work Will Set You Free").
The Nazis, insisting that Jews were universally "work shy," cynically tried to create the impression that, if Jews worked hard enough, they could earn their freedom.
No Jews ever "earned" freedom, though for some continued work allowed them to survive until liberation.
More often, however, Jews were allowed to work only as long as they were needed, or until they were no longer physically capable of performing their tasks.
At that point the charade would end and the workers would be put to death."
(p44) "From mid-November onward, American radio monitors linked Carrier Divisions Three and Four with the Japanese battle force headed for the Southeast Asia region.
Their sortie port was Sasebo on the southwest corner of Kyushu, the most westerly of Japans home islands.
Reports issued by the monitor stations were emphatic.
The two light carrier divisions were under the command of Japans Third Fleet and were headed for Southeast Asia.
Missing from the southern-movement scenario were the six heavy flattops of Carrier Divisions One, Two, and Five.
They were sailing to Pearl Harbor on Route 2.
Refering to Dutch Naval attache in Washington, Captain Johan Ranneft's diary:
(p46-48)"By reconstructing records of Station H and Japanese naval records, the destination and the departure port for Rannefts mystery force is made clear.
Japans fleet movement to Hawaii fitted into two time frames in late November: (1) assembly at standby locations on November 1725, and (2) the sortie to the target November 25December 7.17
Hitokappu Bay, an inlet on Etorofu Island in the Kurile Islands group, was the assembly location for the six carriers of the First Air Fleetthe offensive power of the Pearl Harbor raid.
Joining the carriers in the anchorage were its support force of two battleships, two heavy cruisers, one light cruiser, eleven destroyers, and three I type submarines, plus the crucial supply train of seven tankers.
"Several warships committed a serious radio security breach during their sortie to the Hitokappu Bay anchorage: each transmitted coded movement reportsreports that could be read by American naval cryptographers in Washington, according to Albert Pelletier one of the Navys top cryppies at Station US.18
These Japanese warship movement reports are substantiated by intercept records of Station H.
"None of the movement reports were shown to the 194546 congressional investigation or to the one in 1995.
Instead, Congress was told that American radio intelligence had lost the warships because each Japanese naval vessel maintained radio silence.
Admiral Kimmels intelligence chief, Edwin Layton, substantiated this claim.
During his Capitol Hill testimony in 1946, he said neither the Japanese carriers nor the carrier commanders were ever addressed or heard on Nippon radio frequencies in the twenty-five days preceding Pearl Harbor.
"But Layton was covering up.
The radio intercept reports were available, but Layton failed to inform Admiral Kimmel of the Japanese movement to Hitokappu Bay.19
"In fact, Navy radio monitoring stations at Corregidor, Guam, Hawaii, and Dutch Harbor, Alaska, intercepted the transmissions.
Japanese warships and the commanding admirals of the thirty-one-ship Hawaii force broke radio silence and were addressed by Tokyo radio during the twenty-five days from about November 12 through the December 7 surprise attack.
"One intercepted message on November 18 defied all security precautions and spelled out H-I-T-O-K-A-P-P-U-B-A-Y.
The Roman letters were not even encodedthey were spelled out in clear.
Confirmation of this is available from the Station H records, but Captain Duane Whitlock, the radio traffic analyst at CAST, denies that such a message was sent.
"Other warships went on the Japanese naval air waves and confirmed that Hitokappu Bay was the standby location for the Hawaii force.
British naval monitors at Singapore and their Dutch counterparts in Java heard the same broadcasts.20
General Hein ter Poorten, commander of the Netherlands army forces in the DEI, said his cryptologists at Kamer 14 had evidence that showed Japanese naval concentration near the Kuriles.21
"The plain-language dispatch of the words Hitokappu Bay, confirmed a prediction made on the basis of radio intercepts on October 22, 1941, by Joseph Rochefort, the commander of Station HYPO on Oahu, who told Admiral Kimmel that Japan was in the midst of a large-scale screening maneuver or operation involving air units.
Rochefort laid out the operation for Kimmel.22
He predicted it would include a vast triangular area of the Pacific Ocean from the Kurile Islands in the north to the Marshall Islands in the south and Marcus Island in the east and extending to the southeast areas of Asia.
For emphasis, Rochefort cited the Kurile Islands three times in the prediction.
He had discovered Japans secret sortie port for Route 2.
Stinnett, Robert (1999-12-14). Day of Deceit -- The Truth about FDR and Pearl Harbor
Unfortunately I really don’t have time to go into this in detail right now due to my schedule, but I will say briefly, that I have gone into aspects of Stinnett’s claims on the radio intelligence that existed, didn’t exist, was translated, was not translated not only here, but with Mr. Stinnett himself as well and I have come to the conclusion based on these conversations and research that the bulk of Stinnett’s claims are based on wild conjecture not based on any hard facts and should not be taken seriously.
I would recommend you find some corroborating data that backs up the individual claims you have listed.
"Up to this point we had enjoyed tank superiority. But from now on the situation was reversed." he wrote. Also:
[Guderian records, "[I] made a report on this situation, which for us was a new one, and sent it to Army Group. I described in plain terms the marked superiority of the T 34 to our PzKw IV and drew the relevant conclusions as they must affect our future tank production. I concluded by urging that a commission be sent immediately to my sector of the front, and that it consist of representatives of the Army Ordnance Office, the Armaments Ministry, the tank designers, and the firms which built the tanks. ... it could examine the destroyed tanks on the battlefield . . . and be advised by the men who had to use them what should be included in the designs for our new tanks. I also requested the rapid production of a heavy anti-tank gun with sufficient penetrating power to knock out the T 34."
This commission was in fact constituted remarkably quickly, and visited Guderian's headquarters on the 20th November.
In 1941 our code breakers were concentrating on the diplomatic codes, which we were reading.
Stinnet was right in one respect, we may have had enough intercepts to possibly point at Pearl Harbor, but December 1941 but they might as well have been written in Klingon for all that we could not read them. Most of that traffic did not get fully decoded until well after the start of the war. They may not have been decoded until 1943 or later, due to the need to decode newer, more pressing, messages.
First of all, I appreciate your humorous reference to Klingon -- in concert with my previous suggestion of a Romulan cloaking device to hide the Japanese fleet. ;-)
For those who don't quite get it, you'll remember the "star-ship" Enterprise, under command of Admiral "Bull" H. Kirk, will soon boldly launch into seas where no carrier has gone before, on an officially peace-time mission, but with "Bull" fully alerted and searching everywhere for the enemy -- which unfortunately he only finds on the day of his return to "star-base" home port, Pearl Harbor. ;-)
What, now you'll say I can't keep real history and myth separate?
iowamark: "Very few sober people place any credence in Stinnetts Day of Deceit." "
CougarGA7: "I would recommend you find some corroborating data that backs up the individual claims you have listed."
I know of three other authors who make pretty much the same case that Stinnett did: John Toland, George Victor and John Coleman.
Of those, Toland is otherwise considered a reputable historian.
Other, more restrained authors included Gordon Prange (frequently quoted by Homer), Henry Clausen (Democrat) and Percy Grieves (Republican).
All these folks tell basically the same story: Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor.
The differences among them have to do with evidence introduced (or merely asserted to exist) showing how much Washington knew, and when did they know, about the coming attack.
Authors like Clausen spread the blame among some well known names -- Short, Kimmel, Layton, Rochefort, Bratton and of course, President Roosevelt -- plus a number of lesser knowns: Dusenbury, Fielder, Bicknell, Turner, Safford, Mayfield, Gerrow, and Kramer.
But to Clausen, their errors amount to basically bureaucratic bungling, not some intentional conspiracy.
And it's most notable the names which Clausen does not blame: Marshall, Stark, Stimson, Knox, McArthur or McCollum.
And those are just the people that -- along with blaming FDR, Rochefort and Layton -- authors like Stinnett take direct aim on.
I think it's very important that genuine scholars like FR's own CougarGA7 and LS consistently and strongly blast Stinnett and other "conspiracy nuts" as just that: nuts.
The nuts' evidence does not stand scrutiny, their charges are ridiculous, and their "theories" are beyond the pale of reasonableness, according to FR's best experts.
So they demand a mere "history buff" such as yours truly must produce documents to support claims by any such "nuts".
Well, I have no more access to original documents than I do to the far side of the moon.
And I marvel at how enthusiastically such normally conservative and skeptical FReepers defend the godfather of modern Liberalism, that most wily of leftist American politicians, Franklin Roosevelt.
So I would ask you to consider this: of all the Pearl Harbor books I know of, none were written by actual working scholars doing what scholars are supposed to do: review and evaluate all the evidence, give proper weight to what's real, reject unfounded claims based on substantial reasons, and arrive at conclusions fair-and- balanced warranted by the data.
I'd be interested in such a fair-and-balanced book.
Toland's claims are widely refuted, respectable historian or not, scholars agree that he is off the reservation with this one. Victor tends to source Stinnett so all we have here is repeating bad information. Coleman sources no one apparently making it completely useless.
As far as asking you to produce corroborating information. All people like LS and myself are doing is trying to keep you from spreading bad information to others. I've shown you time and time again the flaws in Stinnett's method and conclusions, but you still continue to produce him as a source of information on Pearl Harbor. By challenging you to find something to back up Stinnett's claim I'm trying to encourage you, much as a teacher will encourage his student, to look for more reliable sources of information.
It's not a case of the history scholar asking the "history buff" to do his leg work. It's the history scholar trying to make the "history buff" a better student of history.
And I marvel at how enthusiastically such normally conservative and skeptical FReepers defend the godfather of modern Liberalism, that most wily of leftist American politicians, Franklin Roosevelt.
Final thought since I found this statement interesting. So are you saying that because F.D.R. is a liberal, then we should support what are unsubstantiated and probably false accusations against the man? In my experience, that is very liberal thinking.
There's a lot of criticism I can heap on F.D.R. and you will see a lot of it when we get further in this project. But I will not just willy nilly back wild accusations against the man just because he's a liberal. Doing that devalues my own agruements against actions and positions by F.D.R. which are real and had serious consequences.
POST for later read
About Mgr Sheen, best Sellers list and last but least Union Crap at time of need.
Here's my point: in a legal proceeding, if a witness is discredited -- found to be lying -- on one point, a judge will instruct the jury that it may disregard that witness on everything he or she claimed.
And that is the standard being applied here, I think.
But if you truly applied such a standard to all of history, we'd have virtually no history at all, just a bunch unsubstantiated myths.
So what real historians have to do is go through the data point by point, and evaluate how reliable is each item, separate out the wheat from the chaff, and then build their narrative on those points which hold up under scrutiny.
For an example of how it should work, just consider the "9/11 truthers'" claims.
No sooner had they published their nonsense than many different groups set to work debunking them with science, witnesses and records.
So today there is no virtually "truther" claim out there that I can't easily find the facts and argument against it.
The same is also true of Holocaust deniers -- the Internet is full of sites taking on the deniers point-by-point.
So my point here is, so far as I know, no real historian has ever published a book which takes each one of the "conspiracy nuts'" claims and answers them item-by-item.
And as with 9/11 "truthers" and Holocaust deniers, I think there's a genuine need for such detailed analysis concerning Pearl Harbor "conspiracy nuts".
Because otherwise, I'm just not convinced they are entirely nuts. ;-)
So there are books out there which look at this, they just don't get much press because there is not an interest why these conspiracies exist, just the conspiracy itself.
If I, for example, was to do a scholarly book and the Pearl Harbor attack, it probably wouldn't sell very well since it would not sensationalize the event. It would just show the fact that there were screw-ups all the way up the chain of command along with some serious flaws in the system for sharing information in general.
There are two seminar papers I will be writing this spring which both may be a chapter in just such a book, but would probably be better served as publications in military history, or political science journals.
Thanks to the miracle of Kindle technology, plus my brand new high-speed wireless DSL Internet connection, it took me all of about a minute to find and download Rosenberg's book.
And the cost was less than the fuel it would take to drive to my closest book store.
So I'm ready to dig into it, will let you know what I find and think.
Thanks for the recommendation!
I've now read everything Rosenberg says about Stinnett and several other authors.
Later in the book, she deals indirectly with Arthur McCollum's "Eight Action Plan" (without naming him) and with the question of code-breaking -- in both cases by simply denying-without-demonstrating their validity.
Rosenberg deals directly with exactly one of Stinnett's data-points:
"Stinnett's first piece of evidence for his assertions was a vignette that opened the book.
Although he conceded that its status as proof was "speculative," it is still worth examining his opening story in some detail.
He recounted a twenty-two-minute meeting on the evening of December 7 among Edward R. Murrow, Colonel William Donovan, and FDR."
Actually, according to Stinnett, the meeting lasted 25 minutes.
Rosenberg: "Donovan, he stated, reported that the conversation dealt with public reactions to the attack and that Roosevelt seemed unsurprised by and actually welcomed the attack.
Donovan's claim that FDR was not surprised, however, does not mesh with a direct quote, allegedly from FDR, that Donovan supposedly remembered:
'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.' "
Apparently Stinnett thought that this no-surprise vignette buttressed his thesis that "FDR knew."
"...This vignette seems preposterous as 'evidence' that 'FDR knew.'
Its claim is illogical, and it would not stand even the flimsiest test of reliability as source material.
So Rosenberg claims.
But the fact that the meeting took place is easily confirmed and apparently not disputed.
According to Stinnett, Donovan confirmed it, Murrow confirmed it, and the meeting's arrival and departure times are noted in Chief Usher Howell Crim's Usher Book -- which "comprise the only official record; there were no official minutes of the meeting."(p3)
And Stinnett's vignet actually begins with Murrow, not Donovan:
"During their twenty-five minute discussion in the second-floor Oval Study, the President provided Murrow with something -- we will never know exactly what -- that any reporter would kill for.
That night he told his wife,
'It's the biggest story of my life, but I don't know if it's my duty to tell it or forget it.'Long after the war ended, Murrow was asked about this meeting by author-journalist John Gunther.
After a long pause, Murrow replied,
'That story would send Casey Murrow through college, and if you think I'm going to give it to you, you're out of your mind.' "
So, it should be readily confirm-able if the 25 minute meeting took place, and if Murrow reported something important was said, but then what?
For that Stinnett gives us only Donovan's report, 12 years later, told to "his executive assistant, William J. vanden Heuvel, who summarized the recollections in his diary."
But Rosenberg tells us that diary:
So here we go again: Rosenberg never saw the diary, doesn't know for certain if it even exists, can't confirm in any way if Stinnett quoted or interpreted correctly, and yet still concludes scathingly that Stinnett's report is "preposterous", "illogical" and "would not stand even the flimsiest test of reliability as source material."
I'd say what's "preposterous", "illogical" and "flimsy" are Rosenberg's arguments.
Here's what matters: even at age 81, vanden Heuval himself could still confirm what's in his diary.
So the diary is either a known item or it is not.
If it is a known item, then it has either been studied and evaluated by serious scholars, or it has not.
If studied, the evaluations must produce a bottom line: either reliable or not reliable.
If reliable, then Stinnett quoted or interpreted it correctly or incorrectly.
If correctly, then Stinnett has done the true historian's job, and Rosenberg is just blasting away with innuendo.
By the way, the politics here are most unusual, considering that vanden Heuval's daughter is affectionately known as Hurricane Katrina, for her effect on ideological opponents. ;-)
Wild Bill Donovan (age 58 in 1941):
Edward R. Murrow (age 33 in 1941, here with Truman circa 1951)
President Roosevelt (age 59 in 1941):
William J. vanden Heuval (born 1930, today age 81):
I’d have to read the book myself before I could comment on this.