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The Assassination of Isoroku Yamamoto - In comparison
Any | Editors

Posted on 05/05/2011 2:11:32 PM PDT by FoxPro

To boost morale following the defeat at Guadalcanal, Yamamoto decided to make an inspection tour throughout the South Pacific. On 14 April 1943, the US naval intelligence effort, code-named "Magic", intercepted and decrypted a message containing specific details regarding Yamamoto's tour, including arrival and departure times and locations, as well as the number and types of planes that would transport and accompany him on the journey. Yamamoto, the itinerary revealed, would be flying from Rabaul to Ballalae Airfield, on an island near Bougainville in the Solomon Islands, on the morning of 18 April 1943.

U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered Secretary of the Navy Frank Knox to "Get Yamamoto." Knox instructed Admiral Chester W. Nimitz of Roosevelt's wishes. Admiral Nimitz consulted Admiral William F. Halsey, Jr., Commander, South Pacific, then authorized a mission on 17 April to intercept Yamamoto's flight en route and shoot it down.

A squadron of P-38 Lightning aircraft were assigned the task as only they possessed the range to intercept and engage. Eighteen hand-picked pilots from three units were informed that they were intercepting an "important high officer" with no specific name given. Yamamoto's last photo alive (April 18, 1943)

On the morning of 18 April, despite urgings by local commanders to cancel the trip for fear of ambush, Yamamoto's two Mitsubishi G4M fast transport aircraft left Rabaul as scheduled for the 315 mi (507 km) trip. Shortly after, 18 P-38s with long-range drop tanks took off from Guadalcanal. Sixteen arrived after wave-hopping most of the 430 mi (690 km) to the rendezvous point, maintaining radio silence throughout. At 09:34 Tokyo time, the two flights met and a dogfight ensued between the P-38s and the six escorting A6M Zeroes.

First Lieutenant Rex T. Barber engaged the first of the two Japanese transports which turned out to be Yamamoto's plane. He targeted the aircraft with gunfire until it began to spew smoke from its left engine. Barber turned away to attack the other transport as Yamamoto's plane crashed into the jungle.

The crash site and body of Yamamoto were found the next day in the jungle north of the then-coastal site of the former Australian patrol post of Buin by a Japanese search and rescue party, led by army engineer, Lieutenant Hamasuna. According to Hamasuna, Yamamoto had been thrown clear of the plane's wreckage, his white-gloved hand grasping the hilt of his katana, still upright in his seat under a tree. Hamasuna said Yamamoto was instantly recognizable, head dipped down as if deep in thought. A post-mortem of the body disclosed that Yamamoto had received two gunshot wounds, one to the back of his left shoulder and another to his left lower jaw that exited above his right eye.

To cover up the fact that the Allies were reading Japanese code, American news agencies were told that civilian coast-watchers in the Solomon Islands saw Yamamoto boarding a bomber in the area. They did not publicize the names of most of the pilots that attacked Yamamoto's plane because one of them had a brother who was a prisoner of the Japanese, and U.S. military officials feared for his safety. State Funeral for Yamamoto in Tokyo

This proved to be the longest fighter-intercept mission of the war. In Japan, it became known as the "Navy A Incident" (ja:海軍甲事件 Kaigun kō-jiken). It raised morale in the United States, and shocked the Japanese who were officially told about the incident only on 21 May 1943. The death of Yamamoto was a major psychological blow for the Japanese nation which had been told of victory after victory even after Midway and Guadalcanal. It also forced the Japanese government to acknowledge that the Americans were quickly rebuilding their military capacity and had begun going on the offensive.

His staff cremated his remains at Buin, and the ashes were returned to Tokyo aboard the battleship Musashi, Yamamoto's last flagship. Yamamoto was given a full state funeral on 5 June 1943,[24] where he received, posthumously, the title of Marshal and was awarded the Order of the Chrysanthemum, (1st Class). He was also awarded Nazi Germany's Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords. Part of his ashes were buried in the public cemetery in Tama, Tokyo (多摩霊園), and the remainder at his ancestral burial grounds at the temple of Chuko-ji in Nagaoka City. He was succeeded as commander-in-chief of the Combined Fleet by Admiral Mineichi Koga.


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History repeats itself.
1 posted on 05/05/2011 2:11:32 PM PDT by FoxPro
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To: FoxPro
Assassination?

Yamamoto was a valid military target.

2 posted on 05/05/2011 2:14:46 PM PDT by Hillarys Gate Cult
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To: FoxPro

bump


3 posted on 05/05/2011 2:15:08 PM PDT by Matthew James (SPEARHEAD!)
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To: FoxPro

Ah those were the days, when armies wore uniforms.....


4 posted on 05/05/2011 2:18:26 PM PDT by beericus (Putting the cool in conservatism, dip in the hip and a glid in the stride.)
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To: FoxPro
I wish they would make a movie of the Yamamoto shoot down. A story based on real events.
5 posted on 05/05/2011 2:18:49 PM PDT by AngelesCrestHighway
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To: AngelesCrestHighway

To this day, the P-38 is one sharp looking machine.


6 posted on 05/05/2011 2:21:16 PM PDT by FoxPro
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To: AngelesCrestHighway

Ahmedinejad..........


7 posted on 05/05/2011 2:23:02 PM PDT by LeoWindhorse
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To: FoxPro
US naval intelligence effort, code-named "Magic",

When are we going to hear froim the Magicians Union that the code name is offensive?

8 posted on 05/05/2011 2:24:16 PM PDT by Michael.SF. (When you hear hooves, think horses, not zebras.)
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To: Hillarys Gate Cult
"Assassination?

Yamamoto was a valid military target.

I seem to recall from my history lessons in high school that there was a quaint old document created called a "Declaration of War", passed by the Congress on December 8, 1941. After that declaration, any member of Japan's military was a legitimate target for attack.

9 posted on 05/05/2011 2:25:37 PM PDT by In Maryland ("Impromptu Obamanomics is getting scarier by the day ..." - Caroline Baum)
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To: Hillarys Gate Cult
"Yamamoto was a valid military target."

He was. "Assassination" is arguably more of a term of art than anything else. Even the Church Commission, concluded that the intentional targeting of a plainly military leader during armed conflict was legal even in the face of prohibition of assassination. And, EO 12333 doesn't preclude targeted killing in an armed conflict though it does prohibit political assassination.

10 posted on 05/05/2011 2:26:22 PM PDT by OldDeckHand
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To: FoxPro

I’ve always thought the shootdown of Yammamoto an Act of God. Kind of like the Battle of Midway, it could easily have gone the other way. Even though the Allies had the info, still, finding his plane in the the middle of the big sky like that, was like finding a needle in a haystack.


11 posted on 05/05/2011 2:26:58 PM PDT by FlyVet
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To: FoxPro

I have always thought this incident would have made for a great movie.


12 posted on 05/05/2011 2:27:35 PM PDT by OldDeckHand
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To: FoxPro

No mention of Tom Lanphier?


13 posted on 05/05/2011 2:29:42 PM PDT by jmaroneps37 (Conservatism is truth. Liberalism is lies.)
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To: FoxPro

It wasn’t worth risking Magic over.

Yamamoto the “brilliant” stratagist split the Kido Butai of six carriers in May 42 to conduct Coral Sea with only 2 carriers. Shokaku’s flight deck was wrecked by bombs and Zuikaku’s air groups were mauled meaning neither carrier was available for Midway. And they didn’t get Port Moresby either.

Around the time Yamamoto was assassinated, he had come up with the “brilliant” strategy of committing the retraining carrier air groups of Zuikaku and Shokaku for a landbased air offensive and Japanese naval pilot quality never recovered.


14 posted on 05/05/2011 2:29:50 PM PDT by Snickering Hound
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To: FoxPro
Not really. On April 14, 1945 the U.S. naval intelligence effort code-named "Magic" intercepted and decrypted orders alerting affected Japanese units of a tour of bases by Yamamoto beginning on April 17, 1942. On April 18, 1942 Yamamoto was dead.
Fearless Captain Zero was informed of OBL's location in August 2010. No action taken until May 2010 and even then it is extremely unlikely that the Bamster had any input in the decision to go.
15 posted on 05/05/2011 2:29:58 PM PDT by hflynn
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To: Michael.SF.

Actually I was thinking the Magic Dragon Society might complain.


16 posted on 05/05/2011 2:33:13 PM PDT by Vermont Lt (How long before the Mall becomes Tahifir Sq?)
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To: FoxPro

I like twin boomed aircraft in general, and built 1/72 scale models of them as a boy.


17 posted on 05/05/2011 2:34:06 PM PDT by MrEdd (Heck? Geewhiz Cripes, thats the place where people who don't believe in Gosh think they aint going.)
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To: Michael.SF.

Magic

Ultra

Purple

KataKana

based on Enigma encryption

the essence of this was not declassified until 1976.


18 posted on 05/05/2011 2:35:01 PM PDT by Texas Fossil (Government, even in its best state is but a necessary evil; in its worst state an intolerable one)
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To: hflynn

Bamster think politics first everything else last. He probably wanted to save killing OBL for the election run, late 2012. Darn that.


19 posted on 05/05/2011 2:37:09 PM PDT by FlyVet
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To: Hillarys Gate Cult

I think the word assassination is valid for the planned killing of any person of power and notoriety. This isn’t a legal document. I am not a lawyer.

I think the word is generally, and aptly, descriptive in this case.


20 posted on 05/05/2011 2:43:26 PM PDT by FoxPro
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To: FoxPro

Love the P-38.


21 posted on 05/05/2011 2:48:34 PM PDT by Vigilantcitizen (No animal commerce on the open forums.)
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To: FoxPro
To this day, the P-38 is one sharp looking machine

It is indeed - and I've always thought the P-51 just looked like a bad-@ss


22 posted on 05/05/2011 2:50:06 PM PDT by PGR88 (I'm so open-minded my brains fell out)
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To: FoxPro

Snipers target enemy officers all the time, and it’s not called assassination. Assassination is the killing of a political leader, not a military commander.


23 posted on 05/05/2011 2:52:33 PM PDT by hellbender
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To: jmaroneps37

I saw an hour long story on “The History Channel” about the event. I thought “Lanphier” if that is the correct spelling, did not sound like a credible person.

On the other hand you never can tell. Sometimes a totally honest person sounds like they are lying.

It really was an incredible story of precision flying, good luck, extraordinary timing and brilliant intelligence.

We really were good back then.


24 posted on 05/05/2011 2:57:28 PM PDT by yarddog
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To: hflynn
Fearless Captain Zero was informed of OBL's location in August 2010.

Gawd, I hate to be defending zero on this, but I believe the operative word would be "probable" location.

Yes it turned out to be the location, but I do not believe they ever had 100% certainty, even up to the moment they launched the attack that OBL was there.

What they had was the first indicators in August that this was likely his hide out, after that they built their case.

25 posted on 05/05/2011 2:59:16 PM PDT by Michael.SF. (When you hear hooves, think horses, not zebras.)
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To: In Maryland
I also recall a quaint old resolution passed by Congress in September of 2001. After that any member of Al Queda was a legitimate target for attack.
26 posted on 05/05/2011 2:59:19 PM PDT by allmendream (Tea Party did not send the GOP to D.C. to negotiate the terms of our surrender to socialism.)
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To: FoxPro

This is the plane that got Yamamoto

P-38 Lightning

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ITRLk9b9AcY

DOGFIGHTS, P38 LIGHTNING VS ME 109


27 posted on 05/05/2011 3:00:48 PM PDT by Texas Fossil (Government, even in its best state is but a necessary evil; in its worst state an intolerable one)
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To: FoxPro

FDR (Roosevelt) unlike POTUS Obama, wanted to win WWII and....in doing so realized you must kill the enemy, both military and civilian. This was done, in both Japan & Germany and with all the Axis support countries. Obama does not care for America, so Pakistan, Syria, Libya, Yemen, the Sudan, Iran go untouched. Facts and truth will show that Obama was forced into a yes or no on Bin Laden by both CIA Director Panetta and Secretary Of the DOD, Gates. Valerie Jarrett, an Osama Bin Laden adoree was urging Obama not to pull the trigger. Obama did of course, throw Bin Laden under the bus, but for his own political survival which will not happen. Obama is protecting and shielding Gaddafi, his soul brother and with direction from Farrakhan & Rev. Wright whom both adore Gaddafi. One day the American public and voters will come to realize what a low-life, dirt bag POTUS Obama really is. Shame the fools have not figured this anti-American, un-American empty suit out!!! As for Yamamoto, he was a brilliant Admiral, he loved his country, he knew, that in a prolonged war with theUSA, Japan would be badly defeated. He detested the Japanese military leadership, because he knew Americans would come back at Japan with a hate and determination to destroy the nation of Japan which they did. It was probably better that he was not around to see his beloved Japan on her knees and bleeding to death. Roosevelt, Doolittle, Halsey, Nimitz, Arnold, Patton, Eisenhower, Churchill, and....on and on and on!!! Dirt Bag, POTUS Obama does belong in the same room with these heroes that saved the world, freedom and our nations!!!


28 posted on 05/05/2011 3:01:49 PM PDT by JLAGRAYFOX
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To: FoxPro

Folks, there was a Declaration of War between Japan and the United States. It addition, Yamamoto was a uniformed combatant carrying an ID card. There is no comparison with this case and bin Laden. He was not a uniformed combatant and there is no Declaration of War. Note that the Geneva Convention generally does not cover non uniformed combatants. Traditionally, they were questioned, awarded a non judicial punishment, and subsequently shot.


29 posted on 05/05/2011 3:15:38 PM PDT by Citizen Tom Paine (An old sailor sends)
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To: In Maryland; allmendream

“I seem to recall from my history lessons in high school that there was a quaint old document created called a “Declaration of War”, passed by the Congress on December 8, 1941. After that declaration, any member of Japan’s military was a legitimate target for attack.”

All a Declaration of War accomplishes it the notification of another power that a state of war exists. A state of war existed the moment the first bomb was dropped on Pearl Harbor and from that moment on all members of Japan’s military became legitimate targets for attack. The Declaration of War was a mere formality.

By the same token, when the first plane crashed into the WTC, a state of war existed between the US and Al-Qaeda and from that moment all members of Al-Qaeda became legitimate targets for attack.


30 posted on 05/05/2011 3:20:40 PM PDT by DugwayDuke
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To: FoxPro
A squadron of P-38 Lightning aircraft were assigned the task as only they possessed the range to intercept and engage.

This can't be right. I swear I saw in an episode of Baa Baa Blacksheep/Blacksheep Squadron that it was a joint operation between the P-38s and Pappy Boyington's VMF-214 F4U Corsairs.

[/sarc]
31 posted on 05/05/2011 3:21:46 PM PDT by tanknetter
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To: FoxPro

I don’t see the Yamamoto and bin Laden as comparable (apples and apples) situations.

Had the capability, and opportunity, existed in 1943 to conduct a snatch-n-grab of Yamamoto the US certainly would have tried to take him alive.

However, they didn’t. So the next best alternative (killing him during his tour) was taken.

In the case of bin Laden there was definitely capability, and an opportunity, to capture him alive.

That doesn’t mean that he shouldn’t have been killed, it just means that the situation is somewhat more complicated. With tradoffs between any intelligence take that could be pulled out of him (after Eric Holder’s DoJ read him his rights and allowed him to lawyer up, of course), the threat he posed to the SEALs by potentially having a weapon or suicide vest, and the potential for a demoralizing circus-like atmosphere if he were to go on trial (including the potential for him to continue to act as the spiritual leader of AQ while behind bars).

I don’t know what potential intel could have been dragged out of him, since he doesn’t seem to have been in any sort of operational control of AQ. So setting that part aside, I don’t think that he was worth the life of a single SEAL, and that allowing him to live and be tried would be extremely damaging to the nation and the War on Terror. So I think the decision to exterminate him using 5.56 insect repellent was the right one.


32 posted on 05/05/2011 3:33:05 PM PDT by tanknetter
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To: FoxPro

No link? What’s the source for this article?


33 posted on 05/05/2011 3:33:44 PM PDT by mwilli20 (BO. Making communists proud all over the world.)
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To: DugwayDuke
There is the not (to me) inconsequential matter of the Constitution.

Absent a vote from Congress a state of war would not be authorized under our Constitution.

While I wouldn't disagree that from the moment the first plane crashed into the WTC any killing of any Al Queda member would be perfectly justified - our otherwise Imperial Presidency cannot conduct war unilaterally without authorization from Congress (except apparently in Libya).

34 posted on 05/05/2011 3:37:41 PM PDT by allmendream (Tea Party did not send the GOP to D.C. to negotiate the terms of our surrender to socialism.)
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To: FoxPro

(Later Justice) John Paul Stevens was one of the Navy cryptographers who helped decode the original message about Yamamoto’s tour.


35 posted on 05/05/2011 3:48:18 PM PDT by Izzy Dunne (Hello, I'm a TAGLINE virus. Please help me spread by copying me into YOUR tag line.)
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To: Citizen Tom Paine

Thank you for telling the truth. So many Americans seem to have lost the hunger for it.

I’m really worried the white house is using the media to socially engineer Americans into thinking political assassinations at the order of a dictatorial white house is acceptable.


36 posted on 05/05/2011 3:54:24 PM PDT by hedgetrimmer
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To: FoxPro
Interesting story there.

I've always found it fascinating to read about Yamamoto's close ties to the U.S. in the decades before World War II. He attended Harvard from 1919-21 and was assigned to work in Washington D.C. for a while as a young naval officer. He also seemed to have a pretty keen sense of Japan's limitations in fighting the U.S. in the Pacific.

37 posted on 05/05/2011 3:57:27 PM PDT by Alberta's Child ("If you touch my junk, I'm gonna have you arrested.")
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To: Michael.SF.
Right, and it took 8 - 9 months to turn the operative possible to definitely? No way my friend. This was something Obama and Jarett did not want done until they were told if you don't someone will make sure that what you did not do is leaked before November 2012.
38 posted on 05/05/2011 4:04:27 PM PDT by hflynn
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To: mwilli20

It is the wikipedia article, which I feel is quite good.

FR wont let us post a wiki with attribution, which I think is a shame. Most of Wikipedia is quite good, really a world treasure, in many respects. Yes there are parts of it that you can throw rocks at, but that is a distinct minority of it.

When you have 7 million articles, there is going to be something to hate and disparage.

As a history buff, I dont know what I would do without wikipedia. I think the folks at FR should embrace it, and pitch in to make it better.


39 posted on 05/05/2011 4:05:36 PM PDT by FoxPro
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To: hflynn
This was something Obama and Jarett did not want done until they were told if you don't someone will make sure that what you did not do is leaked before November 2012.

Together with the reacting to Trump's BC comments by producing a couple of mutually exclusive documents that raise more questions than they answer. Sort of like all the weird crap that's happened in the Osama raid.
40 posted on 05/05/2011 4:07:17 PM PDT by aruanan
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To: allmendream

As you pointed out, Congress did vote. That vote constituted a declaration of war. You will note that nothing in the Constitution describes the contents, format, etc., of a declaration of war. Consequently, it is up to congress whether or not to actually use the phrase “Declaration of War”.


41 posted on 05/05/2011 4:07:38 PM PDT by DugwayDuke
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To: JLAGRAYFOX

Nicely said. There is a Borders bookstore in my area going out of business. I’m snatching up as many military history books as I can at 70% off!


42 posted on 05/05/2011 4:11:19 PM PDT by gatorhead
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To: allmendream

“Absent a vote from Congress a state of war would not be authorized under our Constitution.”

Let me add, a ‘state of war’ is not at all dependent upon a declaration of war or even upon the constitution. A state of war exists anytime two or more are engaged in an armed conflict. A declaration of war only formallizes that state.

Our constitution assigns the power to declare war to the congress but is completely silent as to how congress shall exercise that power.


43 posted on 05/05/2011 4:11:44 PM PDT by DugwayDuke
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To: hflynn

Considering it took 8 years to find out the possible hideout, then 8-9 months does not seem out of the realm of possibility to go from “probable” to highly likely.


44 posted on 05/05/2011 4:13:27 PM PDT by Michael.SF. (When you hear hooves, think horses, not zebras.)
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To: DugwayDuke
Yes indeed. The legislation need not at any point spell out “By the way, under the Constitution - this resolution is a de facto implied or implicit “declaration of war”.”

But it is a necessity, one tragically overlooked in the case of Libya - giving cover to cowardly Democrats who don't want to be on record voting for war - and to cowardly Republicans who don't want to be on record voting for 0bama’s war.

45 posted on 05/05/2011 4:14:01 PM PDT by allmendream (Tea Party did not send the GOP to D.C. to negotiate the terms of our surrender to socialism.)
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To: Michael.SF.
When are we going to hear from the Magicians Union that the code name is offensive?

I belong to The Society of American Magicians, The International Brotherhood of Magicians, and a Magic Dealer Association.

You would never hear a complaint from us.....we know how to keep a secret.

....and if someone did complain.....we know how to disappear them!

46 posted on 05/05/2011 4:30:28 PM PDT by Focault's Pendulum
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To: Michael.SF.
BS. Jarett blocked an early military air strike after August 2010. The BS she fed Obama, not that SFBRAINS needed any excuse to do nothing, to block the air strike was that there was a need for DNA evidence which could only be obtained if booths were put on the ground. This was a delay tactic by Jarett and Obama who believed it would take years to put booths on the ground. Panetta and others turned years into months, months that could have been much earlier months without Jarett and Obama interference, and the deed was done without any help from Jarett or Obama. However Jarett was told by Bill Daley if you don't take a seat in the corner we will let the public know that you and boy wonder refused to act before the next election.
47 posted on 05/05/2011 4:34:04 PM PDT by hflynn
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To: FoxPro

About all the mission accomplished was to enshrine the memory of Admiral Yammoto. Subsequent events would have tarnished his reputation within the Japanese hirarchy, even though he had predicted them well in advance.

The interception was a technical and airmaship feat of note. Mag compasses in the P-38 were notoriously unreliable, so it was a remarkable feat of navigation by a single pilot aircraft reportedly conducted in complete radio silence. It also posed the possibility of exposing our ability to read the Japanese naval code.

Decades later a dispute grew among the surviving praticipating pilots as to who really “shot down Yammoto”. But there are no similarities between the interception of Yammoto and the taking of bin Laden IMO. Yammoto was a serving military member. Bin Laden was a terrorist. The former was a warrior, the latter merely a rat. >PS


48 posted on 05/05/2011 5:01:11 PM PDT by PiperShade
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To: gatorhead

Wise move!!! There is much written on American history and military activity. Yamamoto was “a gambling man”, had spent time in America, knew our industrial might and depth, understood Americans, liked a drink once in a while and loved gambling. He knew he had one shot at America, and when he did not catch our aircraft carriers at Pearl Harbor, he knew Japan was in deep trouble. The battleships had seen better days. The age of the aircraft carrier had arrived and he knew it. Pursue your reading about our forefathers. Our Present POTUS Obama knows nothing of American history and that includes the magnificent role that American Blacks have played in our history from the Revolutionary War to present. The idiot Obama has nary a clue!!! Sad!


49 posted on 05/05/2011 7:39:22 PM PDT by JLAGRAYFOX
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To: FoxPro
"To this day, the P-38 is one sharp looking machine."

Are you aware Kelly Johnson, the same guy that designed the U-2, SR-71 and even had a hand in the F-117 is the guy that led the design team for the P-38?

50 posted on 05/05/2011 7:48:02 PM PDT by Joe 6-pack (Que me amat, amet et canem meum)
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