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“Wake Island” (Movie Review-9/2/42)
Microfilm-New York Times archives, Monterey Public Library | 9/2/42 | Bosley Crowther

Posted on 09/02/2012 5:46:22 AM PDT by Homer_J_Simpson

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TOPICS: History; TV/Movies
KEYWORDS: moviereview; realtime
Free Republic University, Department of History presents World War II Plus 70 Years: Seminar and Discussion Forum
First session: September 1, 2009. Last date to add: September 2, 2015.
Reading assignment: New York Times articles delivered daily to students on the 70th anniversary of original publication date. (Previously posted articles can be found by searching on keyword “realtime” Or view Homer’s posting history .)
To add this class to or drop it from your schedule notify Admissions and Records (Attn: Homer_J_Simpson) by freepmail. Those on the Realtime +/- 70 Years ping list are automatically enrolled. Course description, prerequisites and tuition information is available at the bottom of Homer’s profile. Also visit our general discussion thread.
1 posted on 09/02/2012 5:46:29 AM PDT by Homer_J_Simpson
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To: r9etb; PzLdr; dfwgator; Paisan; From many - one.; rockinqsranch; 2banana; henkster; meandog; ...
“Wake Island” original trailer
2 posted on 09/02/2012 5:48:19 AM PDT by Homer_J_Simpson ("Every nation has the government that it deserves." - Joseph de Maistre (1753-1821))
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To: Homer_J_Simpson

As a kid in the early ‘60s, “Wake Island” was the first war movie that made an impression upon me. Early on, it was always one of my favorites to watch on TV.

I watched it again just about 6 months ago - still enjoyed it.


3 posted on 09/02/2012 5:52:01 AM PDT by texanyankee
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To: Homer_J_Simpson

William Bendix was the best, btw.


4 posted on 09/02/2012 5:52:42 AM PDT by texanyankee
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To: Homer_J_Simpson
A stirring tribute to the United States Marines ...
Perhaps that's true, but the movie doesn't do justice to what really happened: As a former Marine, I thought knew my history, but was totally surprised when I read how bad the Marines kicked Japanese butt.
I highly recommend ...

5 posted on 09/02/2012 6:23:03 AM PDT by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: Homer_J_Simpson

The book “Pacific Alamo” by John Wukovits is a great read.


6 posted on 09/02/2012 6:25:47 AM PDT by OrioleFan (Republicans believe every day is July 4th, Democrats believe every day is April 15th.)
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To: texanyankee
A number of years ago The History Channel (when it was still about history) did a special 2 hour long program bringing back to Wake Island 5 or 6 surviving Marines from the battle. Almost to a man they all said they would have rather have fought to the death rather than surrender as they did as their treatment as POW’s for almost 4 years was so horrible. The Marine commander at Wake Island. Major James Devereux, an incompetent, completely screwed up and surrendered during the middle of the second Japanese shore landing, right when the marines were pushing the Jap invasion force back to the beaches. He took a peak-e-boo out side his command bunker and saw some japanese flags in the distance, and that made him feel it was all over and pulled the plug. Thank god he wasn't at Gettysburg as he would have surrenederd on the second day. The surviving Marines said “why are we surrendering? we were winning the battle.”
America needed heros, so Devereux was falsely made into one. After the war he unfortunately became a Republican congressman. In my opinion, he should have been court martialed. But the movie its-self is pretty good, considering it was made so early in the war. If you get the chance, try to view the history channel special. It was called 'Wake Isalnd: Alamo of the Pacific".
7 posted on 09/02/2012 6:28:41 AM PDT by Lockbar (I promise to move fire-wood twice a day.)
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To: Lockbar

Thanks for the head’s up! I definitely will check for any upcoming broadcast of that show.


8 posted on 09/02/2012 7:15:10 AM PDT by texanyankee
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To: Lockbar
Gee, another re-write of history by yet another keyboard commando. Go figure.
There is not a single shred of evidence to support your childish, ignorant attempt to defame Major Devereux.
The surrender came after Devereux was told the relief force was being canceled. and fighting to the death would accomplish nothing as the Japanese would soon demonstrate at Iwo Jima, Guam, Peleliu and so many other battles in the Pacific.

But speaking of surrender, what does that make General Wainwright at Corregidor or even "Dugout" Douglas Macarthur who saved his own doggie butt and hi-tailed it to Australia?
The disaster in the Philippines was the worst military defeat in U.S. history.
9 posted on 09/02/2012 7:27:45 AM PDT by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: Homer_J_Simpson

Nice that you posted “ Wake Island” on Sept 2nd,2012 but what else happened on Sept 2nd 1945 ? Saw film as a kid, Milda theater 3239 S Halstead (Bridgeport) Chicago.


10 posted on 09/02/2012 7:41:48 AM PDT by mosesdapoet (The best way to punish a - country is let professors run it. Fredrick the Great p/p)
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To: Homer_J_Simpson
I was in the Air Force 1965-1973. I was a Crypto Custodian with Top Secret clearance. Our course in cryptography included information about how we had broken the Japanese Naval Code and how it aided the US at the Battle of Wake Island.

While attending ROTC camp I met the ROTC Commandant from Syracue University. He had flown on the mission to kill Yamamoto the head of the Pearl Harbor attack. The revenge mission was planned when codes of Yamamoto's morale mission was decyphered.

Those Gallant Marines were aided by tactical deception when misinformation was broadcast to the Japanese!

Great Movie and the backstory was great too!

11 posted on 09/02/2012 7:48:02 AM PDT by Young Werther (Julius Caesar said "Quae cum ita sunt. Since these things are so.".)
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To: oh8eleven
To say the movie took liberties with the actual story is putting it mildly.

The true story itself would've made a fantastic movie. But it was made during wartime, and this was the 40s...

12 posted on 09/02/2012 8:03:40 AM PDT by skeeter
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To: Lockbar
Devereux didn't surrender, Cmdr Cunningham did.

And the decision was based on the information they had at the time, which was japanese carriers had joined the assault, there would be no help forthcoming, and Japanese were advancing steadily across all islands (which was true except on Wilkes).

Communications had been cut with forward positions so neither commander had an idea of what was going on.

13 posted on 09/02/2012 8:09:33 AM PDT by skeeter
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To: skeeter
The true story itself would've made a fantastic movie. But it was made during wartime, and this was the 40s...
After reading the book, my first thought was that it would make a great movie too.
14 posted on 09/02/2012 8:17:07 AM PDT by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: oh8eleven

The coolest character would be The Baron, Hammerin Hank Elrod. The guy was an animal.


15 posted on 09/02/2012 8:19:45 AM PDT by skeeter
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To: mosesdapoet

My dad was in Tokyo that day...


16 posted on 09/02/2012 8:37:35 AM PDT by stormer
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To: skeeter
The Baron, Hammerin Hank Elrod. The guy was an animal.
"Captain Elrod assumed command of one flank of the line set up in defiance of the enemy landing and, conducting a brilliant defense ..."
Just one more example of - every Marine a rifleman - even air wingers.

17 posted on 09/02/2012 8:46:14 AM PDT by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: oh8eleven

http://www.amazon.com/Magnificent-Fight-Battle-Wake-Island/dp/1557501408


18 posted on 09/02/2012 10:23:43 AM PDT by skeeter
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To: mosesdapoet
Nice that you posted “ Wake Island” on Sept 2nd,2012 but what else happened on Sept 2nd 1945 ?

Are you nuts? How am I supposed to post newspapers from the future?

But here is today's post on September 2, 1942. .

19 posted on 09/02/2012 10:24:46 AM PDT by Homer_J_Simpson ("Every nation has the government that it deserves." - Joseph de Maistre (1753-1821))
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To: oh8eleven

I concur with your assessment of Major Devereux’s actions. It’s also worth noting the order to surrender came from Navy Commander Winfield S. Cunningham, the overall commander of U.S. forces on the island. Devereux worked for Cunningham, and when the Commander gave the order to surrender, he followed instructions—and it was the right call. When Cunningham made his decision, the Japanese had landed in force on the island and were overwhelming the defenders. Further resistance was futile and would have only resulted in more deaths.

Cunningham and Devereux had no way of knowing how badly their men would be treated in captivity, either. Had they known about the depravity and suffering they would face, they might have elected to fight to the last man.

If you’re looking for some real scapegoats, you might start with FDR, and the ages-old question about what he knew regarding Japanese naval movements in the Pacific in the months leading up to Pearl Harbor, and why he left the Pac fleet as sitting ducks in Hawaii—against the counsel of Admiral J.O. Richardson (Kimmel’s predecessor) who paid for his courage with his job.

There’s also the question as to why the relief force for Wake was cancelled when they were within a day or so of the island. You can make the case that it was too little, too late, or (on the other hand), the availability of more fighter might have allowed the defenders to hang on longer, forcing the Japanese to put more assets into the battle and slowing planned attacks in other areas.

Devereux was only following orders issued by his superior, Commander Cunningham. And in defense of the Cunningham, he arrived at Wake less a month before the Japanese attacks, with orders to finish the airfield, rather than improve the island’s ground defenses.


20 posted on 09/02/2012 12:25:17 PM PDT by ExNewsExSpook (uoted)
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To: ExNewsExSpook
Good post ... I was aware Cunningham was CIC of the island, but thought it was never made clear historically as to which one actually made the surrender decision.
And no matter what any FDR defender ever claims, I'll always believe he knew exactly what he was doing prior to 7 December.
21 posted on 09/02/2012 1:21:17 PM PDT by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: Homer_J_Simpson

” Nice that you posted “ Wake Island” on Sept 2nd,2012 but what else happened on Sept 2nd 1945 ?
“Are you nuts? How am I supposed to post newspapers from the future?”

Sept 2nd 1945, WWII Officially ended is the point. You mean the NYT didn’t record that ? There’s a reason why there is so little attention paid to this very significant date. I contend all the racial bashing of the Japanese that went on during that time played a major part of that decision to ignore this very important date.

While I laud your posts of that period I have noticed the absence of pre and post WWII from the NYT about our relationship between US and that Communist (USSR) state during that period .


22 posted on 09/02/2012 1:50:44 PM PDT by mosesdapoet (The best way to punish a - country is let professors run it. Fredrick the Great p/p)
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To: Homer_J_Simpson

Homer ..... Respectfully request to be added to your ping list.... Love this stuff.

Stay safe and thanks for your efforts.


23 posted on 09/02/2012 1:54:06 PM PDT by Squantos
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To: oh8eleven

Thanks for the title .... Stay safe Marine .


24 posted on 09/02/2012 2:09:29 PM PDT by Squantos
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To: mosesdapoet
Sept 2nd 1945, WWII Officially ended is the point. You mean the NYT didn’t record that ? There’s a reason why there is so little attention paid to this very significant date. I contend all the racial bashing of the Japanese that went on during that time played a major part of that decision to ignore this very important date.

Got it. Check back in 3 years and, God willing, we will cover the events of 9/2/45 in as much detail as the Times allows.

As for the period before WWII, I posted some coverage of Soviet-American relations on my posts from January 1938 up to 9/1/39 (posted on the 70th anniversaries in 2008 and 2009) but it is scanty because that was not my main purpose. Bringing back the post-war period is a job for someone else. I will be mustered out on 9/2/45. Or 9/2/15, or whatever it is.

25 posted on 09/02/2012 2:38:09 PM PDT by Homer_J_Simpson ("Every nation has the government that it deserves." - Joseph de Maistre (1753-1821))
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To: mosesdapoet; Homer_J_Simpson

Homer lives exactly 70 years in the past. The nurses at Sleepy Acres have long since given up trying to reorient him.


26 posted on 09/02/2012 7:04:06 PM PDT by iowamark
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