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Final Secret of Pearl Harbor Hardcover – June, 1977
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|Hardcover, June, 1977||
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Love and Peace,
Two things to know about VADM Theobald. He was a close friend of Kimmel and a right-wing conservative who hated FDR for his "socialist" domestic policy. He wrote his book with an agenda.
Moreover, he wrote his book in 1954, before the declassification of a number of American, British, Japanese and German records. As an example of the problem, Morrison credited USS Narwhal with sinking IJNS Koga at Midway. Within 20 years, further study withdrew that credit.
But again, the book fails on two accounts.
First, Kimmel never ensured that his Army counterpart understood that his primary mission was the defense of the Fleet in harbor, not the defense of Hawaii, not defense against sabotage nor training. He failed to push the issue of having Army AA batteries deployed to protect the harbor. Kimmel set up his battleships for sinking by air attack. He ignored warnings that torpedoes could be used in shallow harbors, like the British did at Taranto in 1940. He was offered barrage balloons and nets but didn't install them. He brought the entire fleet into port, because he had sent his 2 available carriers to deliver Marine aircraft to Wake and Midway. He failed to coordinate with Bloch and the Army to at least patrol the most likely sectors for an approach of a Japanese attack. There were more than sufficient PBYs and Army bombers to do this. He pulled his personnel from the ADC so that only a young Army LT was on duty when the report from the radar station came in. All this despite what amounted to a direct order to prepare for a Japanese attack. The SecNavy, SecWar, CNO, and CSA sent a joint readiness message on 27 November 1941, to both him and LTG Short. It said, "you are to consider this a war warning". Everything the two men did from that point should have been focused on defending the fleet and island and executing their responsibilities under the Rainbow 5 OPLANS. But, now, 40 years later, it became apparent that ADM Kimmel was not content to execute limited defensive operations. He created WPL-46, a plan to bait the IJN's battle fleet into a Pacific Jutland somewhere south-west of Wake. He wanted his battleships able to quickly sortie out of the harbor, not take time getting through torpedo nets or fueling. He was more concerned with getting the fleet to sea than defending it port. And he had all the operational intelligence that Washington had. No valid proof exists that anyone from FDR down knew the IJN would attack Pearl Harbor.
Second and more important, FDR knew that the greatest threat to the US was Germany. The last thing he wanted was a Japanese attack diverting the American people from that central fact. There was absolutely NO political reason for Germany to declare war. The Tripartite Pact was a defensive alliance. It committed the signers to defend each other in case of attack. When Germany attacked Poland, Italy waited until late 1940 to declare war on Britain and France. Japan declared its neutrality. If the Pact was what some writers and reviewers have claimed, both Italy and Japan should have joined the war with Germany, Italy in 1939 and Japan in 1940 when it joined the Pact. When Germany attacked the Soviet Union in 1941, Japan stayed neutral. Hitler had every right to turn around and do the same back to Japan. Again, on 8 December 1941, the US was only at war with Japan, not Germany. Only when Hitler, for reasons only known to him, declared war on the US on 10 December 1941 did the US enter the war against Germany. If Hitler had not declared war on the US, the US would have gotten deeply involved in a Pacific war, unable to intervene as it did from November 1942. And that is why every conspiracy theory is BS.