tv Pearl Harbor The Road to War - the Japanese CSPAN December 20, 2021 4:04am-5:21am EST
strike out that they were over quickly. he did not embark upon this with a high confidence that the war was going to be successful. in his view the only conceivable way he could see for japan to possibly succeed. but is why he embarked on the attacker. >> lady and jon was our panelist adam gibbons discussion on that lead up to the bombing of pearl harbor and the japanese perspective. >> so, we just heard from robin rich i'm essentially the american perspective on pearl harbor. there's always the what if and could we have done this and what if this would've happened?
certainly those are great conversation pieces. that captures some of those because some of those who picked to the last panel today i was going to look at the counterfactual peace what of these other tuners have unfolded. save a bunch of those as well we don't want the last panel to have questions. save those superhard ones for this afternoon. i think that will keep happy and certainly rich happy. so now in this session were going to shift our lens we are going to look at this from a different perspective for the first perspective on now we are going to shift over. doctor noriko professor at the university of washington and historian jon parshall will discuss japan's role in leading up to the attack.
rich is doing double and quadruple duty today. rich will be chairing this panel. as you know, rich is an internationally recognized expert on the pacific war. many of you know him and probably have heard his voice on a radio or tv. he is also a founding member of the museum's presidential council's advisory board. we are grateful to rich for consenting to do this. rich, thanks for that thanks right thing to do for the museum. i'm going to leave the stage and leave it to you thank you very much. >> looks okay this morning the first panel i was playing defense for this i'm playing offense. the back on special teams tomorrow. i was talking with one of the participants that had a very wry story thought about coming here for quite a while. finally his wife said you
ought to go purchase happy to go to new orleans. he came here in 2019 on immediately after the first session and called his wife and said the immortal phrase i have found my people. [laughter] that is how we feel about our friends here at the museum. mike introduced introduced the biography in the program will make it rich the most important points. she is here today primarily because of the work in the pacific war. my estimation the most thoughtful account of the actual role in the war in english. another historian has provided portraits but this is really the best context time, education personality.
i highly recommend it to you. let me take from her work two important points to set up the presentation. struggled with a very complex and ambiguous role on the constitution of 1889, 1890. with nominal power at the same time over country with effectively a warrant for absolute power. we can see the proper role to accept consensus operation from high demand of the armed forces. i does pose pointed questions also had influence in appointments. he did not act as a final decision-maker on domestic foreign policy. with one major exception
misses decisive personal leadership. this was an attempted by army offered to the 26th of february 1936. the revolt struck directly to the emperors close staff killing one of his chief advisers. i near fatally wounding the grand chamberlain who would be japan's last prime minister before pearl harbor would still have the bullets of that attack in his body at the time. he was the prime minister. these events struck shockingly on directly into the emperor's view of the situation and he reacted with tremendous anger. when the military leadership failed to act and put on his uniform of the armed forces
the rebellion it must be ended as he put it immediately unquote. that sets up professor comments with that i will turn it over to her. >> thank you. i have a powerpoint there does it is up at. >> i hope it will work. thank you for inviting me too this great conference. i have never been to new orleans. i'm thinking for everyone willing to invite me him. until the day i would like to focus on the emperors roll the previous covered excellent ground for the world to pearl harbor i will try not to repeat the same information.
but i have to confess i was a diplomatic historian by training. but then i was drawn to world war i and now i'm working on the cold war. and i have to explain why i was studying the diplomacy and the state craft. but then the most difficult topic to study was or to make the decision to go to war. why do people make that decision that was the reason i started to study ruling embodied that difficult spot he was placed on to make that decision.
he didn't but he allowed others to make decision and sanctioned up but i will put that way. >> i think you have to get up a little higher. it's not working. our slide is not working here. thank you. i am advertised my book here already. comfort was the most controversial figures in the world war. there was the famous question that came from tokyo war crimes trial and the people asking why had to stop the war on august 15 and he had the sacred imperial decision on what did he make the roll to
start in the first place? many historians pursued that line of questioning so i started with that question as i started to research him i had to reverse the question based on elite lands is better to put the question this way does if they could not prevent immediately from going to war with the united states in december covid 1941, why was he able to end the war in august 1945? so basically the book followed that line of question. today's question i would like to pursue in this very brief talk is the role the empire played to go to war with the united states.
and this slide basically explains the structure of japanese government and the amazing constitution. things have changed from the 1860s, 90s and all the way to 1941. by 1941 the structure that major constitution created no longer was working well. and the people who were in power were all dead. and they were supposed to be a divine figure serving with the commander-in-chief. the him. he'll was acting like the british monarch who would allow the government and the
military to make recommendations for him to accept. until bite 1941 his acting more like a rat a fire which were commended by the government. the army and navy, there was an inherent coming in with a constitutional structure that the army did not work together while and they were separated they were doing their own things separately they were rivals and competed for power and money. in 1930s at the final japanese war started they created something called imperial general headquarters of the hold country would be united.
but in reality general headquarter was divided into army division and navy division to they were not working together. and the only person or institution that was linking the two was imperial court, the empire. the empire really had the difficulty trying to coordinate the army and navy. that became the whole problem throughout the first war with china and then later the pacific war with the united states and britain. >> i do not know how many more minutes. he was born into the throne so the moment he was born as the oldest son he became the crown prince and conveniently he was born in 1901.
you can calculate how old he was when he became emperor he was 26 -- 27 years old. at the time of pearl harbor decision he was not yet 40. he was surrounded by a lot of senior advisors. groups skipped one. yes. so the key figures in the decision making prime ministers and then those are the most important advisors to the empire. they conveyed the decisions of the government and the interesting thing is the prime
minister stepped out in 1941 was a classmate until they had close communication but in the end they will have disagreements. they are more senior to the empire in relation to these people. then there is of course a general and if you look at the military they are really senior generals and adults. at the time of pearl harbor the general staffing army, was more like conveying all the decisions and recommendations made by his subordinate younger officers who were more hardliners.
in the army it was split. there were a lot of people who did not want to go to war with the united states and britain. as a model and teachers. then there was a hardliner and came from that hard-line group. there is a serious division between the two. it was against the war with the united states. he was not going to be able to defeat the united states in the end particularly in the case of prolonged war. in the meantime in this civilian sector he was going
to be placed in a very difficult position. he was advised to the empire, the emperor had a lot of agreements but had no real control over the relationships between the united states and japan in the last several months. on the road to pearl harbor. i don't think i have time to really go into those details. but previous speakers have already covered it. i would add one more thing about japan/u.s. relationships. to put it simply, i think japan and the united states went to war but japan declared war on the united states over two issues. one was a china and the other was the oil embargo are
freezing japanese assets in the united states. i would like to add i think june 1914 was indeed the turning point because of japan wanted to move to china so that japanese military could stop british and american military support that was provided to china. all along it was not able to end the war with china who started in 1937. and then the allied american study, so japan wanted to stop the military supply. on the map i think that was one of the main reasons japan
at one of the airbase in the northern french indochina besides natural resources. the american negotiations is key. i am running out of time. the american relations between the united states and japan was of course an embargo. in that the decision to freeze japanese assets in the united states and that led to the virtual oil embargo. the myth was that the oil embargo was not ordered by president roosevelt rather the freezing of japanese assets led to a de facto embargo of
petroleum for oil from the united states. that was all done by state departments and the department of treasury and so forth. so by the time fdr realized the oil embargo was in place in reality he could not revise that decision. that was sort of unfortunate. because as we all know the oil embargo was the main reason for japan's countdown to pearl harbor really. i think several points of no return september 6 imperial conference where they decided to prepare for proposition one half months.
expressed his opinion by reading, citing his grandfather poem. basically this poem conveys he preferred a peaceful diplomatic negotiations over or preparation and going to war with the united states. but then this conference puts us so the big line mid october. then if diplomacy failed going to stop preparations for war. and behind i don't have time going to conclude as a role. emperor wasn't personally against going to war with the
united states. and then he did his best by accepting to delay the war decision for one and a half months. from mid october deadline to another one and half months all the way to december 1. but after that he could not do anymore. but then the funny thing is, because diplomacy did not produce the desired outcome with the administration, step down then emperor the keeper had to find a replacement when they chose the general. why did he choose the leading advocate of war to place the
prime minister's job? that is a puzzling question but i do not have time to explain it, do i? >> that is what we have the q and a. >> i will say that to the question answer because i have overspent my time i am sorry. >> very good. also present this morning is jon who is no stranger to these proceedings. has been a friend of the museum for quite some time he participates in these conferences pretty produce tanning maps for the museum. he's also been in the travel program. anna spent a wonderful friend of the museum through all of this. you can read his biography also biographical sketch on the program. let me again and get right to the heart of things. the most important thing in his resume is that he is the co-author with andrew tully.
they best account of the battle of midway by far. it blows away dents and crustaceans of meth expose the true story of what really happened this important part of the history. it's also wonderfully balanced and engaging read. jon with respect to this writing enjoys a particularly warm glow of adelaide shown by legions of historians and readers for setting up a key moment in the story of the battle with the following immortal phrase there will be a brief pause before the bombing commences unquote. does not get any better than that, jon. [laughter] >> i'm going to go at full podium here if we can put up my first slide. going to spend the next 17 minutes or so charging through a rapid history of the japanese side of the attack on pearl harbor.
so without further ado what i want to cover here is talk about the strategic objectives of the attack over the japanese trying to accomplish. i'm going to take a look at some of the officers involved in that process. we'll take a look at how the attack unfolded versus its actual planning. i'm going to touch on the fuel tank myth the infamous fuel tank myth i know will be talking about that during the counterfactual session this afternoon. and then finally a quick assessment of the operation. the reason the japanese attacked pearl harbor was because the bulk of the war plans were oriented towards the south for the very simple reason that all of the economic targets that they needed to capture were located in this region the oil, tin, rubber, so forth. the last thing they wanted while they were undertaking this campaign is to suffer an american counterattack coming across the central pacific and hitting them in the flank of the rear.
the idea was to attack pearl harbor and take the american fleet out of the equation for the implement they are going to use for this is his first air fleet often known by its operational or the mobile force. which is composed of all six of japan's large flight deck or than 400 aircraft this is the most powerful naval aviation force in the world at this point in time. in terms of officers, of course everyone knows the names of yamamoto's the architect of this attack. you have to understand yamamoto was also responsible for all of the naval actions that will be going on throughout the campaign down in the south as well. and so he passes planning of the actual details of this attack off to one of his senior planners and gentlemen who was a strange monk like figure who also rode herd over a gang of junior planning officers each of whom was
slated to do one thing, you are in charge of fuel, you are in charge of navigation, you are in charge of weapons et cetera, et cetera. and then alameda and all of activities into a unified plan of campaign both the actual operational order. of course has to be interfacing with the officers as well who is undertaking the attack. the most important of those being of course admiral was the commander of the task force. he's not an era guy he is a torpedo officer a service worker officer. so in turn is leaning on certain members of his staff. the most important being admiral his chief of staff who is an aviation expert to handle the actual nuts and bolts of how to build this attack. also very important as commander who really sort of a house genius.
hate is a former fighter pilot, well-known air advocate and is the officer. he is really in charge of building the air component of this attack. and finally commander who is the air officer who was also going to be in charge of the overall united attack force once of all his aircraft are up in the air. the operational objectives are relatively straightforward. they want to sink at least four battleships because battleships at this time are the corn of the realm in terms of measuring naval power. if we were to inflict that number devastating blow will prevent the american fleet from selling forth. they also want to sink any carriers that happen to be in the area per the overall goal is to buy six month respite so the japanese can do what they need to down the southern resource area. it's an unwritten goal which is to destroy american morale
at the outset of this conflict is meant alluded to by some of the earlier speakers. they're hoping that by launching this devastating blow against the americans they can put us in the position or hopefully we can come to the bargaining table. early on. if we take a look at the targeting orders passed down, what you see is a list of six objectives. at the top of that list is land-based air power for the recent reason the japanese do not want the aircraft to build to reach out and counterattack against the carrier force. on top of that battleship cruisers other combatants and towards the list of things like port facilities and land installations. so let's take a look at planning and execution of this attack. some of the main features to see coming out of the planning process or the japanese are going to used to attack waves. almost all of the aircraft from the six carriers will be
launched against a wahoo. they're going to come into waves so as to inflict as much damage as possible against the americans. they're going to specialized weapons against specialized targets. we'll talk a little bit about that. there's going to be simultaneous attacks only the naval budding of all the major air fields on a wahoo as well with the intent of suppressing american airpower. we as americans tend to over focus because that's where the majority of the destruction actually occurred. take a look the number of aircraft's involved in these admissions rich pointed out to me a few weeks ago they use more aircraft's against air suppression than they do against the anchorage itself.
so the target area this is pearl harbor the most important target is going to be battleship row. one of the problems we have here has already been discussed is the water in the harbor is very shallow and you cannot use torpedoes on a pair with the japanese do they modify their type 91 torpedoes with wooden thins a dive lesson deeply and they will use those against the outboard battleships for the inboard battleships we cannot get out with torpedoes going to use level bombers flying parallel that are going to be dropping these type 99 heavy armor piercing bombs which are modified to 16-inch naval shells that will have sufficient energy drop for about 10,000 feet to get to the deck armor of those battleships. if we take a look at the execution of the attack itself, as planned the torpedo plans were supposed to encourage basically all points of the
compass. go after the aircraft carriers which were hope to be on the west side of ford island in attack on battleship row on the east side of rhode island. but what ended up happening in the heat of battle is these torpedo pilots decided they want as much water what you see is the torpedo planes go after battleship row's leg channeled into block and parade down that lock. takes a very bad casualties towards the end of that run because a lot of the planes are shot down because surprises worn off by that point in the attack. nevertheless if you take a look at the efficacy of the torpedo attack itself which you see is devastate the inner to most of battleships they leave california and the sinking condition with two torpedo hits as well. take three american
battleships right off the roster in damage nevada. next and almost simultaneously the level bombing attack is also occurring. the japanese do not have as good of luck with this attack by the due manager but ten bombs relatively close to target them a lot of dead fuses do not get the result out of them they would have hoped for. kills three quarters of the group instantly. if you take a look at the first wave damage alluded to the first ten minutes of the attack inflicted 90% of the damage. they leave for american battleships and three more damaged. the second wave then comes and this is composed almost
entirely of dive bombers along with providers for air suppression. then we've seen this picture earlier today. this is the site that greets the japanese large fires and smoke billowing over the harbor. also the groundcover is allows a set to do a dive bombing attack and the results show. if you take a look at the hits inflicted by the dive bombers and a second attack you see a smattering around here. mostly down in the repair basin and famously of course the battleship nevada trying to exit the channel is swarmed and takes a number of hits. she ends up getting impeached by hospital point as a result. the problem for the japanese though is despite having one nevada they had more equitable
targets they did not go after. it's not a very useful woman against the battleship a series of cruisers would've been much, much better. it's a group of four juicy cruisers sitting over here in the southeast lot. all of whom are going to have very active careers in 1942. it would've been much better to take those warships out of actions rather than to disable in the u.s. inventory. finally, in terms of the fuel tank myths which has been an endless source of speculation down through the years. that is the notion if the japanese had simply come back with another attack from their carriers later in the afternoon and attack with the repair facilities and of course the fuel tanks that are around pearl harbor, that would have dealt devastating
blow to the american war effort and might have set the pacific fleet back to california. the way this came down to us i'm sure a lot of us haven't seen here. this is an actual segment of the movie that gives us this myth it lands back on board, the gets out of the aircraft is up to the crew chief, what is going on why isn't the next attack wave getting ready to take off? you told we received no orders to that effect. looks down and decides to go have a conversation. says, we cannot turn back now. we have to go back and hit the americans again destroy their carriers and their dock facilities. this meant reprimanded very sharply, you are wrong. we have accomplished our mission and furthermore the
safety of this carrier force is paramount. this war is just beginning i'm going to preserve that force them to it back to japan. at which the flights go back up the forces returning for home and for cheetah none of this happened. none of this happened. okay? if you want the grisly details, hit me up at the bar tonight i will be happy to bend your ear. this is a myth the person that gave us a method is no longer no more than himself. how in this series of and interviews given in 1963 to gordon convinced this went down. then a screenwriter fixing into the movie and the rest as they say is history. [laughter] in fact, the most simple disputation of the myth is to simply look again that the
targeting orders. what have you believe they only nibbled their way into item number three. i'm telling you of how this mental epiphany all we need to do is jump down to the bottom and that's going to turn this war around. to have done that would have represented nothing less than the repudiation of training and indoctrination in saint naval officer. it is nonsense and it never happened. so if you take a look at the overall assessment of the attack itself, you can say three things. there's no other navy on earth at this time that could have pulled off an attack of this scale and sophistication. think about what they did here. they came 3500 miles across the ocean with six carriers.
no one could have done this. except the japanese at this point in time. on the other hand as i pointed out there were some real flaws in terms of the tactical execution of this attack. particularly in the second wave. for more information is a good article this morning's naval history magazine written by alan zen that talks about the failure of the second wave attack so the japanese left money on the table that they could have used to better affect the campaign that's going to unfold in the next year. tactically that placed into operations. today save for american battleships? yes objective is cheaper did they sink american carriers? >> no sadly they didn't.
did they buy six-month respite for operations? i'm going to give than this one. the battle happens exactly five months to the day after pearl harbor. five month or six ones i'm going to give them that one. the unwritten fourth objective to destroy the outset of this a war that is disastrous failure. but the negotiated settlement to this war right off the table at the outset. the grand perspective the attack was a disaster for the japanese. >> thank you very much. [applause] let me add one detail and that is in his creative postwar
life, creative, eventually in 1960s, he applies for and received an american green card for permanent residence in the u.s. i have been on a search for some time to find the application form for the green card but i wanted to see what he wrote the block prior occupation. [laughter] 's out now for the roundtable let me go first, acted twice to intervene decisively during the war. really i'm sorry, let me scroll that back. interviewed twice to intervene in domestic and foreign policy. he did not act as we talked about a 1940 when he did act in august 1945. do you see any common threads
linking and actions and 4145? >> because he believed his role was the accommodation and sanction and fall of 1941 the decision for war came as a unanimous both government and the navy. now in 1945, that unanimous decision was not that. leadership was divided into really big six was divided to three in favor and so in that division and the government
and the leadership sort of allowed him or he felt he had to in fact he was asked to express his opinion in so that is what he did. that was unprecedented the entire history of his reign in 1945 he was never asked to speak his own mind and the imperial conference. and that's what happens in the summer of 1945. that was an intervention because he was asked to. >> we talked about this before. another element overarching over this was a sense of stewardship of the imperial institution. and i think you mentioned, you talked about this in the book that was really a critical factor both in 41 and 45 he was concerned about maintenance of the imperial institution. that would also be part of it. >> yes he was always worried
to preserve the state of japan. that was his primary responsibility. >> i guess the other question, it's an issue most americans only have a light understanding of this which i find hard to believe was the emperor have a good reason to be concerned even if he gives in order to the military he might not in fact be obeyed? >> in my book i try to demonstrate that he did express his opinion and then he was reprimanded for it. his decision to suggest he stepped down after the incident of assassination the warlord was 19208, he was really an experienced and the
second time i'm sorry something second time there are many times he was not in favor of spreading the military occupation. it was more obvious at the time of the marco polo incident he was against the expansion of operation do not move my forces. but i completely ignored it. he's hoping they don't count. everyone knew he was not in favor of war that's why i
skipped the slide in the war ministry they were determined to persuade to accept the army's accommodation. and when he read the piece of poem they realize the emperor is not in favor of war. now we have to keep working hard but to persuade him. it was always the case the army had the chance to basically override the possible opinion. he never trusted the army ever since 1937. he is the words are you lying to me? it's an interesting thing
about loyalty to the emperor that he claimed to embrace on one hand and also defiance against that personal sort coming from the throne. it is interesting. >> it is, it is. jon? >> time for my growing pray. >> yes trying to figure out whether going to move straight to crucifixion? [laughter] one point that is interesting, to what degree i too started taken my deep dive came to additional primary sources
that process is really opaque you don't have a good understanding of how much input yamamoto even had in the process. the more i read the interviews it seems to be more his baby. the one point i would make i think is fairly clear though as you can see is primarily focused on strategic morale issues paid that's why i'm going after battleships. but yet at the operator agenda the other flyer is we are pushing carriers up the priority list thank you very much. we know if we actually get into a war have to destroy those vessels. the targeting list i showed you there is only one of two targeting lists i have seen for the other one actually reverses the position of carriers and battleships on there. there seems to be some sort of tug-of-war going on with the
fleet fly boys were trying to figure out whose priorities come out on top. >> this usually gets overlooked there are so many other major issues. one of the things that is striking when you do the deep dive is the weather they were steaming into when they launch the first strike was abysmal. >> atrocious. it is not remarked upon. these ships were rolling at the time of takeoff. in some cases up to 18 degrees on either beam. particularly the two smaller carriers of carrier division two. these are not ideal conditions to be taking off a heavily loaded a bomber with a torpedo or what have you. made the statement that if this exercise had been going on during peace time they never would have launched combat operations.
when they got the pilots up to the flight deck you could not tell black from white it was so dark and overcast and pitching. so miserable conditions. >> jeremy, let's turn it over to our wonderful audience. >> thank you to our. [inaudible] it helps when you turn the microphone on. that is amazing isn't it? the first question as to your right towards the back please. >> my question is worth turning it back? timing of all these big issues is obviously critical. and a subtle way i'm curious, given the fact that the military was at least ready defense wise on a sunday morning when soldiers who had
been in honolulu at night where many of them did not even come back. my good friend, her father survived because he, with his friends were intoxicated and honolulu, never made it back to the arizona. on the sunday morning when the bands were getting ready for church the timing of this absolutely precisely the weakest point of our readiness. and the intelligence that possibly came out of the spies that were in the japanese embassy in honolulu commented they fully understand? was there planning so specific to those weaknesses? >> yes it was. they did have a spy and honolulu and i'm spacing his name because i am a bad scholar.
ned? >> note the japanese spy in honolulu at the teahouse. the japanese did have a very good sense for what i want to say, the weekly cycle of operations that are going on with the pacific fleet at this point. they know sunday is a day of rest. most of those ships are probably going to be back in harbor and may not be fully manned as a result. so absolutely they wanted to time the attack on a sunday for those reasons. the plug again in terms of the contingency plans the japanese had, what if that fleet had been in, what if some of it
have been here some of it had been there? what if it were just off the harbor mouth. again we can talk about the counterfactual section what might've happened. but the japanese did have a very detailed set of plans in hand for what they would do if they have to go after the fleet in a different location. if it did not conform to the operational patterns they had seen. >> one thing that came out in a postwar evidence was it was specifically asked about what would be the most opportune day or time to attack. he said sunday. this comes back to the missed opportunities as part of our larger effort opportunity to close down the japanese consulate not the embassy but the consulate were in the greatest location including honolulu. the information is so critical to understanding the movements of the fleet and the location of the fleet they close the consulate down and he would
have had to trundle off quite possibly that might have because cafs cancellation of plans for a. >> towards the front although to your right please. >> given the disaster at midway and the surge in u.s. war readiness and production by the end of 1942, what it have ever been possible for the japanese either strategically and or politically to retreat to a position to better defend their territory in the far west pacific? >> that is a really good question. next question. [laughter] >> working on this never ending which may come up before i die. i have to go into japanese strategy making in the march
timeframe of 1942. one of the problems they had was an inability to know when to say when. given the fact you have the football, if you will, they always wanted to keep that momentum. i've got the advantage now i want to press all of my attacks. that ends up forcing them into a never ending series of territorial that did not do them any good in terms of keeping a hole of the stuff they need to keep a hole of. so for instance once the linchpin of our defense in the solomons area. now we need some outpost to defend if you take those outposts than they need outpost two. pretty soon you are grabbing stuff that has no strategic value to you whatsoever. i don't with respect to rob
centeno i don't see any real way the japanese can win this war after pearl harbor went down the way it went down. if you take the route off the table at the beginning of the conflict as long as the eye can't see any way they can win. >> do you think the emperor was interested in settling it up and 42? >> he actually asked how they're going to finish the war? the exit strategy. before he sanctioned pearl harbor to go to war with the u.s. he asked how are you going to end this? they did not have an answer.
that is how desperate they were and they did not fight this war to win. they just wanted the tradition of strength to secure the first six months to a year or so. and then negotiate peace. that's the only options they had. he asks to come up with an exit strategy and so the administration came up with some sort of plan to end the war but it was never executed. in night asked about the story in japan working the defense institute. that was a victory that is what they said. i don't know if the answer is. >> that's a thread. : : :
so you see this thread and 42 nec to 1945 that yes we know we have lost the war but it would it be among the beaches in japan and then what will bring them to the negotiating table misdirected recursive the whole war and it's never successful. >> once again getting back to this theme talking about the second volume you'll have to buy it of course but when you lose perspective looking back over tokyo and berlin in 1945 if you
look at events tasted by americans until 1942 and a look look at the antifascist war up to that point it's an incredibly grim story. the touting of the japanese and the chairman that they are unbeatable. it seems to me like a wild claim. up to 1942 it goes on and there's a book about the allies be any reasonable person in 1942 knowing not only what they knew then what not been able able to take the outcome of the war so literally into the mid-42 so the japanese were not entirely dilution didn't 42 that maybe this would all eventually work out. i'm sure it impeded any thoughts about trying to get out the war as fast as possible. >> i'm going to plug our next
conference and we will have more information about 2022 in between the sessions. next question to your left panelist. >> given the fact that the japanese did end up surprising us at pearl harbor if they had accomplished what they wanted to wish was they had a declaration of war before the attack happened, if they had had their declaration of war on the table and the attack happened that was a devastating would that have changed that morale that you are talking about because one of the reasons americans were so fired up was because it was a surprise attack. >> i think the answer to that as it's a noble but my broad but my brought subtitle biggie would have changed dramatically.
i think they would have in apsley outraged. that's my 2 cents. >> even if they manage to do it like they did at 7:30 in the morning people would still have viewed it as this was you know finagling. it really was a true declaration of war. >> the bottom line is he killed 3000 of our service personnel. >> the next question is to your right halfway back with connie. a really softball question. >> i like those. >> how come the japanese didn't know the three carriers were not in the port and i asked that softball question because obviously that guy at the embassy was getting good
operational information about the rhythm and cycle of ships in and out of pearl harbor and the japanese data traffic analysis. they listen to first the radio communication and concentrations with the same kind of traffic analysis that we did. something is out there because there are communications going on. they may not have known exactly what it was. how come they didn't know the carriers were at sea? >> that's a really good question too. bear in mind there's always a delay in when you actually receive that signal analysis and when you can actually decode it and analyze it so there's a dissemination problem with that information as well. the thing is you know i don't think their picture was ever perfect as to where those vessels were. they were aware that the carriers were not there because when they sent their planes over
early in the morning before the raid they were made aware of the fact that those carriers were not present which was a tremendous disappointment to them but at this point they were going to back down. >> the other thing i'd add a sort teeth on the 25th of november. we had three carriers at that time. >> there were for the atlantic. the saratoga was on the west coast and the only two in pearl harbor with the lexington in the enterprise and they were set on missions to send aircraft -- enterprise is taking aircraft to midway and enterprises taking aircraft to wake island and after the forces had sailed just before the attack. what's the task force set sail i don't think there was any going back at that point. >> to your left towards the
front. >> on the planning side the japanese sent five midget submarines the pearl harbor and i'm wondering what they thought they could get accomplished because they only had a few torpedoes and each of them and secondly it jeopardize the mission because they obviously were seen there and if they had followed through -- what was their objective there? >> they objected to the use of the submarines up until the middle of october but at that point the notion was if we were going to do this attack would need to bring every possible weapon to bear and we have an opportunity here to use these midget submarines so i think some of this you are seeing
actually there's almost service pressure coming up at various points and we have this weapon system but your absolute right that it was the tremendously risky asset to use could give away the attack before the aerial attack. >> good, next. >> panel is to your right in the middle. >> in hindsight from the a japanese perspective it seems incredibly short-sighted that they thought they could win the war even through a negotiated settlement. was there anyone in the military or the government particularly before the embargo and the freezing of assets that even after that there might be a better strategy to just turn
negotiations and the resources that they needed. >> well, the only way they knew was to use a military solution so particularly the army was had made up their mind. the military solution was to go to war with the united states. earlier there was a discussion about maybe waiting for the british colonies or the dutch companies but that wasn't the
military's thinking. in their mind the british and the dutch word -- and that would have meant war with the united states. it was very simplistic in that regard and the prime minister who said -- the emperor asked him to become prime minister to try negotiations one more time and it was proven wrong because he was loyal to the emperor so he said yes so he tried one more negotiation proposal but he put the deadline november 30 as the cutting point if the united
states was not going to be persuaded to leave the oil embargo by november 30 and to go to war. that's the mentality and the way the military was thinking about that how to use diplomatic negotiations. plan a plan b and if that didn't work we would go to war. that's sort of the way they thought so really there was nobody suggesting are recommending or persuading the military to go the diplomatic route because to avoid war that was not in the thinking of the military in japan particularly in the golden age of militarism i would say. so it's an institutional problem in japan at that time and the diplomats were not in a position to prevail over the military.
>> and one final note on that, i would address the context that existed in japan in a period period. i was talking with a japanese garden couple of years ago and i said to him it's really difficult to convey this sort of thing about how japanese decision process was so dysfunctional and i was alluding to the of the privacy and the civilian government he said you should try explaining it to the japanese population. >> the panel is to your left. >> dr. noriko kawamura in your research did you come upon evidence that how he felt a doubt the death of so many of
the japanese and their decision and i was wondering if there was anything that you might elaborate on. >> after i finish writing this book on the war i am now writing a book on the cold war. the more i read whatever documents are available in which he expressed his thoughts, i think he was haunted by the whole war that he allowed to happen and the next half-century when he was still raining as emperor and a symbol of the
nation he probably relived that whole experience and his role. it was in the name of the emperor hirochito so in that regard i think his remorse was really deep but the tragedies that he was never allowed to express his feeling or apology to the public not only to the japanese people but all but the dems of asia and the united states and allied powers as well. once he actually drafted his apology that he wanted to publicize and its bear we saw it but at that time it was after
japan's occupation was over, i mean the american occupation of japan was over but at that time the prime minister did not want that to be publicized and so he never really expressed any feelings of remorse to the public, but i felt that he was deeply troubled and at one point before he died, he was in a public speech and he was standing there listening to other people talking about the war's legacy. he was in tears and that sort of thing was never broadcast in japan but we don't know the real truth feeling of him. his, i'm sorry in the public
record. that's the problem but we cannot find it out because these documents are still sealed and we can go through his own personal records. >> that's a really wonderful point. we have time for one maybe two more questions and we will go to your left towards the front here. >> mr. jonathan parshall you on the offense on the navy in the first six months of 194042 and when i went to ask given the shortage that the pacific fleet had even at if the battleships of pearl harbor hadn't been damaged wouldn't they have set their first six months and work we limited to carry them anyway? >> i think that's a very perceptive point.
in fact if you read lundestrom's admiral he makes it very clear how incredibly tethered our carrier forces were looking just behind them and if you lost a single boiler to a submarine attack or something untoward that could in essence shut down the entire operation and that carrier would have to retreat. so i think you are absolutely right. i don't know frankly if we had any ability even if those ships had been damaged to do the kind of counterattack that the japanese were so scared of. and even if we had i don't know that the battleship line would have been able to use them in that conflict, certainly not against a consolidated -- and in many ways they got lucky that
they were lost in deep water and i'm sure we'll be talking about that this afternoon as well. yeah you think you are quite right that oilers were the unseen factor at that time in the war. >> with that time for one quick last question. >> i will make a quick. prior to the outset of the war did emperor hirohito continued to say i don't want to go to war and was there any evidence the japanese military would assassinate him? >> and assassination was not owing to happen. even the military would not dare assassinate the emperor but there was a scenario that his
younger brother served in the army and was more favorable to the army's position so there was talks of asking emperor harry toe to step down and replace them with his younger brother. because of that he looks at his relationship with the prince is not that close. his mother to impress, her favorite was the prince. that would have made it difficult. >> we promi
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