Created by the U.S. Army Signal Corps in the months leading up to Pearl Harbor, and through the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Science's fledgling "Research Council", SAFEGUARDING MILITARY INFORMATION was shown to U.S. troops in early 1942. It features a truncated notice at the head by Major Gen. Dawson Olmstead, who as Chief Signal Officer during the major portion of World War II presided over a momentous buildup of the Signal Corps. With as budget that grew from nine million in 1941, to more than five billion in 1943, Olmstead turned to both the Signal Corps laboratories and the private sector to meet the demands of total war.
The film features Hollywood actors and sets, and includes such stars (uncredited) as Eddie Bracken, Ginger Rogers and Walter Huston. The film opens with an explosion aboard a ship in port, caused by a saboteur (1:45) and has a great special effect shot to boot. At 2:27, the film warns that "a careless word, a harmless boast" could cost the lives of the innocent and that "thoughtlessness breeds sabotage." At 3:00, a sailor played by Bracken is shown on the phone with Rogers (3:31) making remarks which are overheard by a spy who eavesdrops on him with a hidden microphone (4:00). These are heard in turn by men at 4:50 who relay information directly to the enemy -- who then notify a U-boat seen at 5:00 of the position of a merchant convoy. At 5:56 a military officer played by Huston speaks about the concept of "loose lips sink ships". Military plans should not be discussed openly.
At 7:00, military men are shown on leave, bowling at a bowling alley. At 7:20 a civilian asks questions that put a soldier on guard. At 7:48, the man is reported and at 8:00 taken away for interrogation. At 8:40 a mother proudly speaks about her son, and reads a letter which divulges secret information. Hours later at 9:00 a newsroom is seen where an editor learns that a terrible accident has befallen a train. At 9:30, the headline screams "hundreds die in train wreck!" The wrecked train is shown at 9:50. "The slip of a tongue can make the difference between victory and defeat" says Huston.
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This film is part of the Periscope Film LLC archive, one of the largest historic military, transportation, and aviation stock footage collections in the USA. Entirely film backed, this material is available for licensing in 24p HD and 2k. For more information visit http://www.PeriscopeFilm.com