Skip to main content

tv   Pearl Harbor Roundtable Discussion  CSPAN  November 10, 2022 11:57pm-1:24am EST

11:57 pm
11:58 pm
historians about the impact of gutting pearl harbor. >> and so, bree looked at this pretty small and so this is the pearl harbor discussion that we promise you and to come later and we should to be super and
11:59 pm
provocative based on every town that we've had has been super interesting and provocative so far so prior to coming to the museum, i spent years and decades really in the military planners and plans and the branches in the sequels and for the range of contingencies to areas of you think about that, this is kind of the hypothetical piece so in the spirit of scenario planning, in consideration of futures, and then attendance of the sequels in a roundtable discussion will really consider kind of actuals pertaining the attack on pearl harbor and looking at the period from november 1941, through august of 1942. so of course i get the best people around and to participate in this conversation and they called it and said it he would be the ringmaster for the stars and it's really an amazing thing
12:00 am
here today some doctor, a member of the museum's presidential counselor advisory board and professor of history in new orleans and we have historians partial and we saw it earlier today, and nice to meet you. and as you know, they're all experts on this topic so level idly discussion with the questions of course caused by the doctor and other presidential counselor and historian and chief of historical services for the army heritage and education center that my boss, 28 years ago now i think, it's a little while back and certainly and acknowledge expert on contemporary conflicts and on the doctrine and strategic policy and as rob mentioned earlier, he has been
12:01 am
awarded the prestigious society military history and a price for his lifetime contributions in the field at some really hard, the arena in the stars but also one of the stars and it's really my honor to turn it over and say thank you to our team here. >> thank you pretty you know that he had a distinguished career because he survived an evaluation from a in his younger days pretty he still made col. to try could not do it. and it is a truly i told mike that might bother you see me over the years, my general roll these congress has been to handle these panels of experts like a said the ringmaster to the stars and this is a great group and you have ian toll
12:02 am
finishing up his trilogy of a bore and also jonathan parshall you heard him this morning with the exempla planetary probably unmatched knowledge of the warfare and pacific it in the description of a streambed monk like figure that we've had. [laughter] in a might fit that he is also has a lot of long titles that would be long and hard and still mad at me because i help is - was a game. >> i played third base with the wrong glasses on i thought it would getting killed. but so this is a trend off this whole session is been all these questions about the what-ifs and i'm going to try to beckon these experts and for the questions of their will go to the audience and you can bring all of your counterfactual to us so one of the great things about counterfactual history, you can
12:03 am
never be proven wrong read and we can go all kinds of directions on this but i want to start off with one that actually the doctor cut have previewed this from this morning. and she talked about this historian named aaron anderson the started to write about the oil embargo netted very interesting argument in the present resume with the new the oil embargo would push into war did not want to go that far but when sanctions got put into effect, including the freezing assets of the state department bureaucracy kind of an out of control. basically, it the secretary lost control where was going by the time that it was on the roll in place and fdr could not stop it and we have this rule is of the first question that i want to throw out the panel of experts is what happens if anderson is right and richard frank and had
12:04 am
discussions, portably but there's actually misinformation from fdr. the richard frank is not convinced that this is true with the bottom line, if there is in his right and fdr did have the sense that the oil embargo would push into the war they didn't want that, what happens if we through sanctions in the summer of 1941, with the oil embargo that we would still end up with japan and the war the way they do. >> nobody wants to take that one and i'm not going to. [laughter] no actually i will read think that i would go back to the statement at the beginning that you only get out that you may gt more time out of the process. and it's clear that was a good time for us to be standing for the time that we could get given the state of her own more preparations but i think again it just sort of given that the
12:05 am
largest trajectory of the u.s. and japan and their entanglements in china, that there has no way at some point those two are not going to come into a collision course and you'll end up with a war. that's my take so you would say the maybe a little later, that's what i would say. >> okay, and with good reason. it was clear that the toilet in the total oil embargo started the clock ticking the japanese immediately required to tap into the stockpile which was finite and they didn't have any realistic solutions to that problem other than essentially giving our governments what we wanted including a full part in going south to go get the oil, there was a ticket for the never linda's.
12:06 am
and so, if the clock did not start to take it or if it was sticking but it was taking more slowly because it was not a total embargo, then i think that you could say is it possible counterfactual with the decision to go to work is delayed and if it's delayed about even as much as a month, a few months, and japanese that point would've get the war in russia and we would have a better idea that they will score total victory early snow that winter and maybe it starts to wane a little bit in the decision-making on that i think that it is sort of fruitless to speculate but it is useful i think just to realize that this time even if the decision had been pushed back by another matter of matter of weeks it could have significant consequences could. >> and with respect to a lot of your question, we've already
12:07 am
past the bill and regardless of what you do, having to do with the oil embargo in 1941, the japanese still aware that again the clock is ticking in the sometime in 199043 we would be given an absolutely and bit of naval supremacy in the ocean and the military options will be nail so if you are going to go to work, the sooner the better. >> okay, pursue another angle on this in the stock about the 14th roll in decision making with the japanese and making the things that we talk about insurance and we talk about one of the problems of deterrence is the message that you're trying to send is only one that gets received, talk about the fact the marshall makes this big chill about the b-17 in the philippines because he thinks that will detour the japanese from attacking it but in fact it's more of a spurned it looks like increasing the threat is there some way that may be a
12:08 am
threat or perhaps a japanese but have the philippines factor in this decision-making or was assimilated change that factor than what goes on. >> i think the japanese were about to leave any potential enemy behind but if you talk about their access to the oil with the united states and 60 percent of the world's reserves at the time i think the next big indonesia and the japanese were looking some way to replace the oil for military and economic purposes they really had take the other alternative. in one of the things that impressed me over the years to know the japanese military historians the japanese military culture, so deeply affected they were by the german experience.
12:09 am
there is a huge club in japan and perhaps latino and. [laughter] and it is still the fact of the european military on japan is german or british and certainly would've run counter to the british or german's strategy that existed the potential force which had some naval capability and erupt your movement and i think that we sometimes forget how few japanese divisions think it is like six, involved and the south and certainly the japanese were concerned about any losses at all in their naval forces.
12:10 am
and one of the things that i think struck me in trying to do ministry the pacific war from something other than american perspective is to how anxious and neurotic almost hysterical the japanese decision-makers thinking about all of the bad things in my happen for them if they didn't have to eliminate possible threats. >> i was going to add to that as well that the classic answer the question always does goes down to the community is that the japanese can't leave an unreduced - setting aside. and there is an article in the book talking about the roll of the japanese maybe leading up into more and a friend of mine just recently pointed this out to me and said that if you look, there's a series of wargames over conducted by the navy just
12:11 am
prior to the outbreak of the war and is wargames, they tried to have different scenarios where this just detect the doctor let's just attack the british and see if we can get away with that and yes, and every one of those scenarios, was inevitably ended up happening is that they had enough in a war with all three powers so having come to that conclusion, and those wargames, they then decided that if we are going to go to work, we have to go to work with all three of them simultaneously and pearl harbor. >> was moved to the wargame which is not reality, is have a two-part question. we talked about this, i talked with ian toll about this, then the japanese, did they have other options besides what we already talked to one of the implications of your panel was that the pearl harbor didn't really affect the babies well
12:12 am
they probably couldn't respond a lot quicker with or without it so good the japanese accomplish their same objectives without coral harbor. >> everybody is looking at me. >> i think the answer is yes probably given this strategic culture at the time i think that people make make big mistakes and was invariably at the strategic level or at the tactical level, and it i think that the japanese first mistake was assuming the war was inevitable. in an opportunity and that would not be there in 43 or 44 when it was in 41 in the fleet would probably be expanded by a factor of two or three. and they knew what the building program was and they could tell they were falling behind and if
12:13 am
you assume that war is inevitable they may be abednego assume rather sooner than later. which seem to be the consensus of the leadership of the japanese navy at the time. and he made it one of the points and if the japanese had been successful in pearl harbor and sunk every single american warship in the harbor, and they had lost more marshes between@and i can't remember the date actually but the americans in that span of 36 months, would've outnumbered the entire japanese navy even as it stood in the americans brought more destroyers to the battle the japanese brought aircraft. so you know the sort sorted statistics make it plain but they have two classes of the battleships that were authorized before the navy in 1940. and we thought both with the ships that were they down before
12:14 am
1940, most of the u.s. navy disappeared by 1943, we won the war the navy and in some ways didn't even exist in pearl harbor pretty. >> i think that your original question with the japanese could've accomplished her admission, i think absolutely without pearl harbor and most prominent aspects of the initial opening of the japanese offenses is really are sort of plunging into the air in a lot of ways in our preparations for war were terrible as were the relations with the dutch and no position to defend ourselves and give the logistical difficulties of fighting in that neck of the wood in any case we won't protect our there effectively. >> and they had to go into the philippines though and they would be left. >> will they don't attack hawaii
12:15 am
and really makes no difference to at least the first six months in the war probably the first year in war and you just look at what it took for us to actually push a fleet across the pacific when we eventually did that and you had to establish advanced basis with the ability to service the ships and that capability did not exist in 1941 and did not exist in 1942 and did not exist in 1943 to really was an adult early and 44, with the establishment and the very rapid growth of these that we had the ability to set up in these remote places like. [inaudible]. and eventually in the southland of course these huge floating naval bases were essentially able to supply the places they came in with everything the
12:16 am
ammunition provisions and conduct repairs and some major repairs. and noting that capability at the beginning of the war and really not even until the second half of the floor and so it's a lot of ability to project this into the western pacific and absolutely did not exist as a destroying the battleships and pearl harbor, really had no impact at all the way the war when the been told in the first half of the war. >> olc have a scenario here where pearl harbor was not necessary japanese could've accomplished what they wanted without pearl harbor so it's up worldwide without harbor. what happens if the japanese attacked self and not pearl harbor. >> will hear the of this issue in the military and the military
12:17 am
is essentially running the country and so when we talk about the careers these admirals and generals, they secure the base as well in our instinct is to evaluate the decisions in their careers in the same way we would evaluate the careers of american military leaders. but they were more than that in japan, there were the politicians making a major decision and even making decisions about domestic policy and the generals and admirals running education systems in japan. so these people were politicians and the circle of rulers in japan were making all of the decisions so the decision to attack pearl harbor was a military decision and principally founded on this idea that we have to clear our - so we can go south there's victory in order to essentially have the
12:18 am
american response to what we are about to do with the secondary discussing earlier with the panels, the secondary idea that you might be able to destroy the american morale at the beginning of the war, and that our government within asked the japanese for a truce. and the second assumption which was really just so badly flawed because of course the result was as you know, exactly the opposite back when pearl harbor enraged and united the iraqi people that is really oliver at that point. and the rest simply had to be played out over a long ability war in which the outcome and fdr prior to the attack on pearl harbor, was very very concerned about this scenario where the japanese we go south, and avoid touching the philippines and any other american territory and
12:19 am
holding any sort of hostilities in the market forces not attack any american territory but attack the british and the dutch. and with the goal of going and taking the oilfields. and i think it would've caused the most severe problems for the united states and back for the allies because it is very hard looking at the political situation in the united states in 1941, to see how the country could've entered the war united and determined that perhaps could've asked for a vote in the declaration of war but what would have been a divisive issue and the isolationist and in congress were very strong both parties, would've opposed the declaration of war and even went and got in declaration of war through congress would've been like a close vote at that point, the american people within
12:20 am
invited that was not the way the week could've entered the war effectively and think we still would've one and it might've taken longer. and so by attacking it pearl harbor, surprise attack with no declaration of war the japanese essentially solve this dilemma for fdr, they solved his greatest problem, one of the most extraordinary blunders in all of history when you think about it. t-mac i was going to say the counterfactual that what happens at the japanese price at the known attacked the u.s. than in desperation hitler decided to declare war on the u.s. in hopes that the japanese will follow and that is another thing. and so that would be another one. >> and i think the influence of the chinese nationalist, and in norma's amount of support that
12:21 am
the nationalists caused fdr animal enough to remember this and china and it's hard to recapture the churches that the chinese nationalist had and it had been tough to get involved politically but mostly logistically, they can find a way to supply the chinese and we forget that this was a real deal and many of the leaders of the american business of journalism work dying to do something to help the chinese nationalist so i think that is a factor that needs to be considered in looking for the popular support that might have existed even
12:22 am
without pearl harbor for doing more to help the chinese to figure out a way to do it. >> counterfactual is what happens of hitler doesn't declare war on the united states after pearl harbor this huge problem for fdr as well obviously. and they just came out with a new book, hitler's decision to declare war from cambridge, anybody is interested in that and the problem for hitler and studies operating under that information at this point you need didn't really understand the time that he is formulating this decision to go to war with the u.s., just how badly things are unraveling in the eastern front and other factors as well. >> and that goes back to ian toll's points, if that would affect the clock a little bit, the japanese could've been determining on the decision-making as well pretty. >> of the japanese decided
12:23 am
against the pearl harbor operation, which of course in the navy and the regime where opposed to it, if they had gone south, and they had with the philippines and there's little doubt that they would've wiped out the countries force which they essentially did and macarthur had something like nine hours notice for the attack on pearl harbor and if he asked philippines would've been even worse. and at that point, various things, one you could be certain of is that macarthur would've been relieved of command because anger of the american people in congress and a government with the fastest up on rather than having been diverted to the commanders in hawaii and scapegoated pretty so that alone, ending a career and douglas macarthur, they would
12:24 am
remember him except that few historians and think about the long-term implications of that not only the second world war but after that and in korea. >> and we talk about the things that happened in the philippines, and the tactical things and i would just say if you look in the dictionary, with a picture of under the phrase - and he was there in their commander in the philippines to spruce up their and a market garden in africa and he continues to move up somehow and let's go and there are things that came out of that it pearl harbor panel about the japanese and the americans conduct of that attack that i want to try to get into before we turn over to the audience. i was doing some digging on timelines and i found on windows that 3:42 a.m. in december, the
12:25 am
minesweeper of empathy reported a periscope which dave responded to but they couldn't find anything but if it would've been taken seriously and the forces that pearl harbor had about four hours morning, how does it change things that happen it pretty. >> potentially drastically the first time ever on tv for discovery channel and the exact scenario out that the fleet had gotten three never four hours worth of warning there is sufficient time to raise steam and get out of the harbor and is planning in the tv show agenda which was a great roll to be in the my reactions that was so delighted that they were deep water and we would go after those american warships and advising him, then i sing them permanently and am here to tell you that the american fleet was
12:26 am
an no way prepared to defend itself against a combined strike and all of those things just would've been horrific. so they sense how it came out when i plated and we sang five or six american battleships it is devastating. >> one of the things that you can appreciate unless you've been there is how narrow an exit channel is a pearl harbor this incredibly narrow and if you get one battleship in the way and against chand, if you go sideways we did. >> actually does have to be sideways. >> the boys mother wonder that anybody ever thought that they could get in and out of there with some ease. >> so the one hour notice, say
12:27 am
that the first catalina and first to eventually go after 630 a little more than an hour notice does that make any difference pretty. >> they can make an incredible difference if you have until further, do we have the same sort of coordination between the army and the navy in terms of how their efforts will be deployed because we needed this point is to get the army interceptors up into the air as rapidly as possible if we have some sort of system in place we can actually alert those fires up in the air that potentially takes a real bite out of the japanese forces that are coming in and the other factor of course is the guns fully command printed the picture that i showed them a presentation of what the second wave looks at as they were coming in, that is with the first wave would've seen as well read in the japanese were extremely
12:28 am
impressed with how quickly we were able to better balance in the volume of the aircraft is tremendous read nothing that they had anticipated. >> that reinforce the point about the condemnation about not sending out that coordination for that center even if they had the warning. >> he didn't have the coordination set up to take it manage of it. >> i think you can make some interesting arguments of who had the best, the germans of the u.s. navy and it comes down the side of the u.s. navy and certainly a 5-inch 30 it was a finest aircraft gun in the war. battleships had that. but even so, the navy aircraft was very potent. solis moved to the second strike, this morning, we talked about the japanese to have a successful, the comeback for for a second wave and what if they do when foot to accomplish with
12:29 am
a second wave. >> will i'm going after this cruisers and also things like destroyers and submarines and yes submarines, destroyers there's plenty warships to shoot out there, which turned 50-kilogram palm would be very effective printed and their six cruisers and 30 destroyers but they were not touched. >> they really liked the battleships pretty. >> and there's also characters of course as well plated. >> and yes we know what happens if any of our carriers, this very simple, 81 died bombers is one or two carriers, they would burn to the waterline we would've lost any carrier and there is actually going to be destroyed. >> was the counterfactual on that come the carriers he destroyed, enterprise and and if
12:30 am
they get or how does that influence the war. >> obviously, ships like this will be moved in a lot sooner than july of 1942 on one of the things and i think that it moves our options tremendously in the first year of the lord i think it's difficult to see a campaign for instance and i don't think that it really has a long-term impact on the war. >> you don't see these earlier rates that were conducted probably, while midway in savannah interesting question is of actually would've it helped the japanese if you would've had a situation in where he had to carriers and destroyed two
12:31 am
carriers in the attack on pearl harbor read the war would've unfolded differently and they would not have insisted on the midway operation it in the japae majority of their carriers force just six months after pearl harbor and if they did so you know and again this is like counterfactual are so controversial but i think that you can use that scenario with first carriers very well could have been destroyed and would work for the japanese our lease the first year of the war. >> i will push back on midway and i'm just about to get published in the naval war college review coming out of the spring and i didn't realize this until i was having conversations if you use ago with less from that they were prepared to fight the japanese at the anza two carriers versus five and so it's conceivable to me we still has her time on the west coast and
12:32 am
we had yorktown as well you still could've had this midway scenario sometime five or six months down the road. >> just that this for the midway operation it is so closely linked to the threat of the american carrier basic going up and down the cliff rear of the japanese empire in the early part of the worn at those rates were happening and is a big giveaway that he really is a round of speculation. the midway operation seemed as important to the japanese in a way that would've allowed them to essentially force naval staff to improve the operation. >> it would because another one of the goals that they had course was he wanted to be able to capture this eventually because we do root bring the americans to the table, having it the bargaining chip is incredibly important and
12:33 am
certainly those even in discussion before pearl harbor within the navy is whether or not it was feasible to invade wahoo and partly for the japanese of course the sealift capabilities zero-sum game if you're going to attack in the south which is the absolute prior to her in a priority, we have to boil we do not have the fuel necessary to do with the assumed need to be these divisions captured. >> and one of the things in the middle of the archive, we have all kinds of stuff, this is the log for the division of decembee barracks. and the first reports of the japanese paratroopers went into the airfield comes in about 10:00 o'clock and invited, they air force our japanese money on the beaches. a lot of these are actually coming from, 1140 parachute
12:34 am
troops are letting on the north shore and wearing blue coveralls a lot of these are coming from civilian police. it could be airmen coming in there a lot of these reports all of a sudden you have these if you read through it, you have this blue coveralls in the red disk showing up all of the place was like something's guys from mars coming down and letting all of the beaches read but there really was the sense that they were coming to short of course t the end of the day everybody out there with their spring fields on beaches and invade and if understanding that if they did decide to actually plan on the wahoo and follow-up for some kind of a tape could've they taken a or held it and they decided to do that and is a major change the whole operation and could they actually have done something like that. >> i'm going to have something
12:35 am
to say here but i have a very healthy respect for the japanese military and the first six months of this war when it comes to ground combat and i wahoo is a defensible place and terrain is great for defense but i think that in this point in the war we would probably not prepared to play up against up tempo football that they have against people like the british and don't know that we would've defended ourselves terribly well given shock factor in surprise of all of that stuff, alan where are you at rated. >> that is a hard call, the japanese and the capability was real very small and they certainly could have both a regimen at the shore and at the beach or someplace on the north shore. an interesting test because most of the hawaiian national guard
12:36 am
was in dc and, i mean, it was the japanese-american organization and i think that would've mustered a sufficient ground forces probably to repel simile could've had tags that enhance of the american forces but you do have a really strange and volatile civilian homefront that would certainly have made any kind of defense difficult i think but i don't think that my recollection of the japanese, they would've thought seriously about this because they didn't recognize they just did not have the sealift. >> what about the tanks. you know, the americans and two battalions of that 100 armored vehicles which in terms of
12:37 am
pacific armored combat, yet we could not utilize this armor because frankly they had an idea how to do combined arms target pushback would be we have tanks in the water but i don't know they know how to use them because the japanese would not use them an effective manner and looking at this report, 1535, a report comes and it, three transforms, three japanese transports planning by san tan pretty. [laughter] that was a bad day. and they had some intel problems and they're trying to grab as well predict to my quality of news for them the surf was tough for them. i wouldn't have wanted to have something he trying to get ashore ready. [laughter] >> let's talk about the population. it is heavily full's interesting and that we will eventually in
12:38 am
turn the japanese and the west coast or not doing hawaii but there's a large population there what if we had a thousand of them, the fbi in the local police. >> look at what they have done if there were pockets and how can they affected this operation if there was this group that were disloyal that were working pretty. >> most of these folks were first-generation, born in japan and they were certainly middle-aged and most of the people end up in the battalion of the 442, they were young and born in the united states and american's citizens and many of them attended the university of hawaii which in fact has a dorm dedicated to one of the officers of the 442. and i think they had a group of
12:39 am
the students rotc students disarmed and continued to actually to serve it in a security functions and i think they'd made the transition, they were americans and they were thought to be on the island and then you had the population it the mexican populations, and the portuguese. >> korean chinese. >> and many of them ended up in the american armed forces during world war ii they don't get anything like the recognition of world war two veterans received. >> there is a lot of concern about the spies sabotage prior to the attacking american military and in fact, became a major issue in post pearl harbor reviews the military commanders in part said that the failures
12:40 am
and to prepare for the attack partly because the focus on this issue of sabotage and potential threat of this large japanese-american population it and in hawaii it is i believe the fact that other than this incident which was when the pilot crash landed his plane on his way out of the western part. he was able to efficiently convince or perhaps force at gunpoint from japanese-americans and trying to essentially support him. and one incident, it was of a japanese-american residence of the islands working at the japanese and the japanese spy, he came up in 20 earlier panels would. >> i would say that guy, that's how i refer to him pretty. >> he was under diplomatic cover
12:41 am
and he and his communications with his government said that this japanese-americans here going to be no use to us and also don't depend on him so getting california, you try to find at least a few examples of japanese-americans who were for the japanese to justify retrospectively, this policy that we had. but we can't. and so that tells you a little bit without valid i think exactly what is the nature of the threat was or wasn't. >> yes, i would say that the fbi in both naval and military intelligence were all over the people who were potentially the spies in fact i contributed to all kinds of terrible motives it any kind of military information
12:42 am
gathering. >> i have other questions that i can throw out there but i think it's time to open up to the audience members there's a lot of things filling out there so i will open you from this direction could. >> full thank you to our panels and for the discussion of what if and will start in the back to your right gentlemen. >> if the uss navy does not blow up in the harbor, and this meaningless attack and actually specific fleet. [laughter] [laughter] >> and the timeframe is strictly november 41,. [laughter] >> i will take that one.
12:43 am
what i think that i'm going to take is a subtext question and this is all just a big joke, this considering of the counterfactual's, it is controversial as mentioned earlier and scholars will say don't do that read and like you know it would begin with neil ferguson and he tried, but he ended a very good book, it is called what if said the history and the caution of this has entered essays by different historians kind of considered counterfactual in different periods of history and place them with the subjects. the best way the book that i talk about the introduction which is very long discussion it. his philosophy and history and is just dazzling really. any develops an argument which i found convincing, when you have to deal with counterfactual's as a historian, because they are
12:44 am
linked to the issues that if you believe there is causality an issue and if one event can cause another, and you must also accept that could've happened it differently and if you don't accept and it could've happened differently, you're saying there's no causality then what you doing this for anyway, usually in front just writing down what happened and so i think there's some roll for counterfactual is the problem of course is you to quickly move into flight speculation which are not useful. >> this one, do you think that he would've done anything if it had managed to gather pearl harbor saying it is the only ships to really get underway as one of the only capsule ships and do you think i would've had any effect on the japanese carrier force at all. >> i can't anticipate that it would've do, so fast enough to
12:45 am
catch him and never going to get with the government and frankly was also already in a sinking condition because of the torpedo hit during the first wave and i think about it was again lucky to beat herself where she did because she could've been a bigger trouble she would've actually exited the harbor and when she runs into one of the japanese submarines working around out there and she could've been the recipient of badness. >> to your right and halfway back. >> is there any chance that wedge the first movement what if board. >> i am looking - i have been talking a lot here. >> no. [laughter] not being smart year, i'm going
12:46 am
to tell you what a big number of japanese strategists included. and they had any chance for military victory, they had in 1941 in 1942, because crime was working against her use of force was necessary from the united states and it is really kind of hard to imagine what kind of events would have turned it around and i think that we are interested in is why did it last as long as it did it or why did it be resolved sooner or later in the point is contingencies, can be dealt with. and i think they might affect the casualties they might affect the losses to the various forces but i think in terms of the outcome it's really hard to
12:47 am
imagine it and it could've been very different, think that it is hard for us for you and i who are remembering the wartime. to generate the tremendous hatred for japan but pearl harbor and subsequent events caused in some was by the asian racism of which you usually have to work out much of a sweat to be very unhappy with the japanese. a couple of times in my life, i've slipped and talked about the myths which to me is the world war ii and a fair representation of how we spoke about the japanese. >> i was one aspect of the question, when we have pivoted to going after japan first in lieu of germany. >> yes, pearl harbor had not occurred.
12:48 am
for what event had been worse printed. >> that's interesting it and think you can make the argument that we had lipservice to germany first tragedy during world war ii was pretty clear to me that they never really paid any attention to that and that in his mind, japan never received to the status of the power that we will go after and in fact if you look at movements of the troops from the u.s. during the first half of 1942 the majority the strips are actually designated for points in the pacific rather than points elsewhere. so the king, he was fighting a parallel for an japan was always going to be in the top of the list if borough of the recent in the '90s for to fight pretty so i think that you can actually say that once you've got kind of rose to japan it kind of an
12:49 am
equal in the eyes of the u.s. military in terms of the amount of effort they got put out to at least the first year. >> it is certainly true from, in the first year and the japanese were taking territory rapidly so i think that you consider degraded integrator emergency resin europe, principal la and great britain in english, the safemode police from the time being. they were tided down in russia and so i think that fits into a lot of the choices that really in the first year of the war, our effort was going to stabilize the situation in the pacific and and in the particular secure hawaii and to secure our communications to new zealand and australia which would be the base for the event
12:50 am
printed. >> content try to have that contemporary issues come about two years ago i was invited over to do a conference of the japanese about current strategies in the pacific and that i felt like i was stepping back into 1944 and looking the japanese now, to turning the focus now to china and you talk this morning about the japanese overextension in they have the same dilemma in talking about defending it different scent of direction if i think that the same problems in haiti reinforce what they put on the islands. how do you avoid this and the problems like i said, all over again walking into an deal with them. and then the americans dealing with the same things in talking about defending baughman you still have the same, still a theater of distance and seapower
12:51 am
and airpower an essay the dynamics of four in the pacific's today are the same as they were rated. >> i think we would all appreciate the vastness of that part of the world. with somebody you went to europe fairly often it early in my career then did a flip-flop and then went to asia a lot in my body will tell you it's a lot longer to get to china and korea and japan and then it is to great britain to go to europe now, i guess i can stop in atlanta momentarily and don't even think about it but i can sure tell you that it think a long time about how to get to tokyo bay seeing our soul my solution was to stop in hawaii for r&r pretty. >> and then continue on pretty. >> unless you really do it and appreciate the distance because you can never stay in the
12:52 am
pacific war pretty. >> happy back is the next question pretty. >> this may be a slightly modified version of the dutch and the british first. let's say the plea stays in san diego not moved to pearl harbor by the japanese bypass the philippines and guam and make no attack on the u.s., and declare the prosperity fearless gun and they guarantee the future security of australia and new zealand and to attack them. >> assuming they attacked great britain it and they take hawaii. sue met connie, could you give him the microphone please. and the panel looks in each other.
12:53 am
>> that they get their southern initiative completed which does not include australia and new zealand in the get the oil and they declare that we are done and thank you very much and we are peaceful now. did we attack them. >> i think he still has to try for a declaration of that point and i think he has to look at that insane we are in the slippery slate and suffer this point we gotta stop. >> it is a political question really so what is fdr do and what is the u.s. congress doing how the market people react to that and what is the press do and the burden of being a democracy but i think that you've got have some consensus to go to war. i think it's an immensely difficult problem for fdr and for the allies and for americans who at that point for saw that
12:54 am
inevitably we would have to get into this global conflict and settle it in the way that satisfactory and for the democracy printed and i think that is very hard to speculate what happens in that case and i think that it takes longer for the united states to declare war and it will actually fully mobilize credit i think it is a longer war and i think that we when it in the end. but you could easily see is it going to 1948 perhaps again this is just guesswork and i thank you so speculation is the thing to call it. yes, it is a political problem is a very good book called this angry dazed which is about the great debate between the isolationists and interventionists leading up to the second world war and really just reminds us, the politics
12:55 am
are today, they were bitter and polarized as well and fdr opponents really hated him with a will and their passionate and we all got fed into the debate of what to do before pearl harbor. >> i think the japanese were cooked anyway you look at it largely because the opposition to war the united states was largely among isolationists which included scandinavians and americans and irish-american said others. an important think that racial bias, some of the factors made the japanese targets and he can't find anybody jumping up and down and saying the week can't do this to the japanese. the truth is most americans could care less and for the two can do anything to the japanese and it was okay. and i think the japanese totally
12:56 am
misread the american racially distaste for them. in the japanese officers would come to the united states to be students pretty and they had a real feel for that. and you couldn't assume that the americans would somehow be deterred from the rural of nasty racial revenge predict that certainly part of the deal. it there is a poll after pearl harbor i think 11 percent of the american public that the japanese should be eliminated as a race. i think it was 11 percent predict. >> god knows what they would say read and gentlemen to your far right in the front row place predict. >> your previous answer, as a segway and so what i was going
12:57 am
to say them and assume that the ark was relieved for the attack at pearl harbor and i know that churchill certainly is thrilled because he said he went to bed and he slept and what if there had not been the attack and how would fdr, fit into the war and long would britain be able to hang on. >> well, we've addressed that question a little bit in some of the previous answers but certainly, it would've been immensely difficult political problem for fdr to convince congress to declare war on the american people the essentially get behind efforts are required not just going to war but really transforming the entire economy. in order to plan ahead and so i just think it would've taken
12:58 am
longer and the anger and the will of the american people to go in this more would've taken longer to build. and i know that's on a particular satisfactory cancer but i think that it is in the question that counterfactual become difficult at this point rated and since you asked i will just read this quickly, this was american playwright who was brought in to the white house as a speechwriter and a very good book was about fdr and harry hopkins. they were discussing this is dilemma leading up to december 7, 1941, they were at this rated just one thing that they could do, thank japanese can do, teddy roosevelt completely off the horns of this dilemma and that is precisely what they did it in one stroke in a manner so challenging and so insulting it and enraging it
12:59 am
with the delighted and confused american people are instantly rendered uncertain if and so it really is remarkable that the japanese acted in a way that now the military strategic reasons that essentially struck this political problem and of course fdr died in office and did not leave the diary. and to determine what he was thinking if the many of his aides did, and after december 7th that he seemed to be relieved in a sense pretty. >> i was just going to add a point or two, were talking a lot about what happens if we don't get into a war with the japanese were not talking about what happens if it were germany and i think almost certainly were going to be in a shooting war with the germans because of some sort of escalated it attack and we've already lost a destroyer
1:00 am
and really involved already in de facto shooting war against the cruise marine at this point in time and i don't see how we get out of the war against germany at some point. >> there's been a tough question if i can jump in this what happens if germany and japan of a real alliance and really work together not mean you have american stuff going right by the northern tip of japan and the japanese don't catch any of it what happens with the germans and the japanese actually work together predict. >> the problem in terms of coordinating their strategies is that the timing of their respective windows of opportunity still line up well in 1942. and also the assets they had available to them, japan and japan primarily as a maritime power in the germans are of course completely focus on what is going on and precious it was really difficult to see how
1:01 am
they're going to effectively coordinate the masses the only reasonable theater seems to be somewhere in the mid east some kind of a win cup in the air something like that but it is really difficult to see how the germans are going to be able to drive through these cases and they tried that and it didn't work out real well so i think the coordination issues i think are a real interesting thing and even if they had a better intent to do it. >> and the follow-up to that was on great britain and how long do they hold out, if the united states is not involved in. >> there's a very stable position actually they were already beginning to win the war and i don't see them as being a candidate for any sort of effective invasion by the germans. >> and is especially true on the eastern front and continuing so the real test for britain is in
1:02 am
1940, they ready fast it rated. >> the next question towards the front. >> i've attended every conference that we've had here at the museum and i've got to tell you this is the best panel we have ever had because we've always wanted to ask the weather questions and. [laughter] typically we been told that's counterfactual and we should not talk in here you all up there asking yourself questions like what it is really heartening to the historian deacon me. and i'm going to suggest that we have an entire conference. [laughter] and just line up every historian of their and will be watching it every morning and evening pretty. >> i will be washing my hair that day.
1:03 am
>> if you just show the man up on the big screen. [laughter] anyway i wanted to ask this question for years, distinguished historian it, is very very big on the idea that in europe and i'm going to make this about pearl harbor in a second but about europe, the russians really where the majority of that war which i always thought will we landed in normandy on the sixth and saipan on the 16th two fleets were able to go through the troops, halfway around the world so i've always thought that if we were not fighting the japanese and we would've applied all of our resources to europe, how quickly that outcome would company and so that you can answer this question in the genre, here's where i will ask the question, what happens if the germans
1:04 am
attacked pearl harbor. [laughter] [laughter] [laughter] >> we've officially jumped the shark. [laughter] you've got it. one of the things and when you do the counterfactual analysis is to figure what counts and what doesn't braided and thus think about the roll that is like and they connect. and it's quite common why people would want to denigrate the americans contribution to world war ii the united states was the only one playing a major roll in all three axis powers and now, the body count school that argues is really the russians who won the war and they killed a lot of germans no doubt about
1:05 am
it no question but the russians died, the only question is was it really worth it really figuring out why the word turn out the way he did his body count and you have to do the home front industrial production you have to look at food and you have to look at morale and all kinds of factors that begin to explain why one side and white the one did better than the others. and consider the fact that societies are made the greatest use of laminate and service and work and then those gender insensitive did not do so well. i don't think so. the process is being conclusive as possible to figure out what really counts and what does not count involve innocence and anybody that grabs a hold of one
1:06 am
kind of factor and i think while they realize it or not, they should be taken seriously. i don't thank you so a good historian and has angst from being kicked out of the parachute is again. [laughter] we all have little stories but you know people do develop biases and i know that the army participated in the war against japan but if six marine divisions for the war minus the navy had you know, you have the sort of it figuring out what moving people to take certain kinds of positions and jump to the evidence and effectively sometimes miss this pretty. >> i thank you so the day before pearl harbor is when fdr directs
1:07 am
this and what i think the sixth of december is when the directive is up to these county farm programs. >> bullock we ended up in a conflict where we've only fought the germans, we made bad decisions and at that point you can look back and say what i was away so note don't need aircraft carriers to find the germans in one of my going to do with the skill of the navy and where the now is oriented primarily towards the power in the nonparent airpower and i would army structure i would say the division. i only need like 30215th you're going to play with the big boys, we certainly have the capability of helping to get the work over much more quickly by the think it's going to require us to retool our approach to the strategy and enforce a structure to better figure a fight in a war that we would in a finding which would be must hundred much less reliant on naval power in my opinion.
1:08 am
>> in the different exercises, and exposed release in the summer of 1941 and the structure of over 200 divisions and six of which would be motorized and how are we going to motorized these divisions and where will they fight, texas arizona, i mean, you know, gentlemen to your right please. >> so it is fdr had a plan for third term, how do you think that would've changed things pretty. >> that is a great question rated. >> the next question is then who does when, who is the president and wilkie seem to have the soul
1:09 am
of the internationalist. he ran an isolationist platform in 1940, so i think this is one of these questions where all of the critics of the counterfactual speculations, think it is hard to speculate in a situation. and if you had a real diehard isolationist elected in 1940, i do think that the attack on pearl harbor naturally the isolationist going to change his stripes quickly and we're going to declare war. and we have energy, maybe not and so more in the scenario a longer work which we had more of a halfhearted kind of a start to it. that limits our ability to come mobilize and energetically with a sense of the united purpose is
1:10 am
an enemy that leads to a longer board which we still plan in the end. >> here is the set up, the japanese polar main troops out of china and they attacked pearl harbor. and then they immediately go to ringo for positions and he and he said maybe hiroshima and okinawa and then they go onto the defensive and the u.s. comes after red with so many casualties in the u.s. that may be fdr or they might've invited those others to invade northern japan or could've it been them in the u.s. could've had to build more nuclear bombs and just dropped ten or 15 just get
1:11 am
the war over. >> it is really tempted say in one of the problems of course the counterfactual's is here dropping a pebble in the water. as the ripples of time get further and further out from the event, is like the battle of the midway come i feel safe and saying a day or two after the historical battle but were now projecting five years in the future of what is going on after this morning that happens this really really tough predict excellent going to say. >> there just locked in there, the japanese pulling out of china and they would've been like thank you cipillone of china simply guess we don't need to embargo the china near you go. everybody's happy. and the thing that i would say is we are going to build a
1:12 am
strain of defenses around our naval empire and neglect the fact that the pacific is nothing but ocean. you put a lot of airplanes on the place like wakeman is the size of a postage stamp so not that many said the japanese never really had the ability to erect a series of defenses that would've been sufficient to be half an american attack at least not in the long-term that said, i will go and this is something we talked about on occasion, in my presentation, and as long as the americans, i actually think there's a danger point towards the end of the war when we are tired of the comment that we are running 200 into in places like open our. but we might've been inclined to negotiated i don't know.
1:13 am
>> there's a book that talks about the jc fears that the public was afraid of losing the war but the ships are coming back and because because he rate and the people are trying to change back to civilians, the industrialists try to go back. it didn't go well so there's a sense that's one of the reasons they push for stronger actions against japan because the repair to the american public would not last much longer. >> one of the things we overlook sometimes the american servicemen it were being killed at the end of the war were younger than the ones casualties earlier and in the war we were going into the teenage casualties environment which was a serious moral problem. >> will the program said that a
1:14 am
sort of built and in as a cushion because we have a lot of questions in the next one is going to be to your left with connie will get a couple of more and. >> this way be easier for you, if the schedule was in the pearl harbor and the waterline, when applications are there for this possibly later i'll see in the midway. and i think that ian toll already touched on that well and think you seen a lot of carrier rates going on along this and i think that is pretty hard to anticipate coming off. >> in the b25's all in one flight and no air cover.
1:15 am
>> while it puts us into more of a defensive stance and we were pretty and we were on the defense in 1942 but people were constantly looking for opportunities to act aggressively to turn around this train wreck of a war but if we have lost one or two carriers already at the outset, and means that we have to be a lot more careful about how we will risk those assets. >> what would be the possibility as the u.s. fleet had stayed in san diego, what would've been the willingness and capabilities and desire of japan to attack the west coast of the united states. >> they did not have the logistical capability to reset fark and of the risen christ me the last few years of one of the
1:16 am
things that i got wrong was sort of fulfilling the japanese with the replenishment capabilities there is an interesting article that came out, a war college and illustrated affect the japanese had much better underway with refueling capabilities that i was aware of at the time but that said i don't think they have the right to go all the way to the west coast despite all of the panic mongering if that occurred. in the next few months and certainly want to read from the japanese perspective, they never had any intention of doing anything of the sort of that really would put the fleet kind of off the map at that point >> i'm going to agree with what john said, but just as kind of a reality check, who the fleets the way of taking them and look
1:17 am
at the size of the fleets. and realize the japanese had those kinds of fleets, just maybe that the transfers and logistics capabilities and all it took to push the fleet across the pacific and atlantic significant amount of ground force on the shore and even if they have had that, but they led to the, they would be on the convent fighting against all of the forces that we could muster to meet the beach on the convent is in the scenario the japanese invading north america the west coast was never feasible, never remotely feasible that they could have a successful invasion. >> i think that you can think of as a pure rating force and it can project power indistinct
1:18 am
pulses over a very short time schedule but never had the ability to actually sustain itself in the field unlike the carrier forces that we brought to the party and 1944 which not only would come smash the island but even off here for however long it takes to reduce a physical event and an innovation is while the japanese never had that capability even in their wildest dreams. >> patrick swayze coming to shore. [laughter] >> last question. >> given that the united states would develop the atomic bomb when it did it would become available and if we extended that war or it was extended with japan for another two - three years, honey think the atomic capability would've played in.
1:19 am
>> developing and probably in about 15 bombs by then but then you would have had millions of japanese dying from starvation and, january 46 they would put chemicals to destroy them and use poison gas on the beaches and it would've been my god japan would've been disseminated. >> a conventional bombing campaign, just how quickly i was going in the end of the war in august. but if the work continued by january, 1946, and that monthly would've dropped more bombs on japan and we actually did drop on japan and the entire war. >> and the thing that i would say respect is we often lose sight of what was going on throughout the rest of asia that if the war had prolonged, you would've seen it the japanese body count would've probably been a 3x or 4x larger in the
1:20 am
occupied areas in china and indonesia and vietnam and that would've been a tremendous humanitarian tragedy. tens of millions more people would've been killed, not just in japan. >> with a japanese believe that they would've disappeared. that there would've been famine that the russians would've been for continue to invade the islands and there would be untold catastrophe which the postwar political situation of might've looked much like germany. >> it goes back until the story before, i gave the presentation about the bombing in tokyo and the senior japanese historian got up and said, in and we must thank you americans because you made a surrender in august therefore a soviet invasion later in september come up in a
1:21 am
prevented ten millions of starving to death in the winter because they couldn't get food and so there is all kinds of oil every month, you place kind of actual games which started out earlier but every month of the way it changes something else in the ripples could've added massive it implications for the history of the world and the common denominator would've been a lot of civilian bodies. >> i thank you so a great way to wrap up our pearl harbor preconference symposium. can fi
1:22 am
1:23 am
on your program guide or >> an honor and pleasure to introduce the speaker tonight. john steele gordon was edute


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on