Gary Novosielski wrote:
> Nice turn of a phrase, but it certainly does not follow. It presumes
> that, but for Pearl Harbor, the U.S. would /never/ have entered the war.
> I suppose that's possible, but it's equally possible that some other
> provocation would have been found, even if it had to be manufactured.
The original statement does not make the presumption you claim. It is
pointing out that the U.S. was at war with Japan because of Pearl
We must remember that Pearl Harbor was more than a mere attack. At
that time the Japanese were officially engaged in peace negotiations
with the U.S. When one is negotiating, one does not make war. The
Japanese diplomatic in the U.S. did not break off diplomatic until well
after the attack -- which he didn't even know about. That was act of
sleaziness by the Japanese government. Anyway, Japan fired the first
shot of the war.
> Recall that the Tonkin Gulf incident which got us into Vietnam was
> manufactured, the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait prior to Gulf War I was all
> but instigated by the State department, and the WMD stockpiles that
> justified Gulf War II were simply invented out of thin air.
First off, the events you cite happened long after WW II under
different people in government. Secondly, there are strong arguments
justifying all of those events. The Communists were attempting to take
over and enslave South Vietnam, as they eventually did -- ask the 'boat
people' why they were so willing to risk death in little boats to
escape. Iraq's invasion of Kuwait was a fact and not in the world's
interest to be allowed to happen. As to the WMD, critics of the Bush
Adm claimed Iraq had WMD because the US orginally gave Iraq such
weapons years before, so even Bush critics agreed there was WMD and the
Clinton Adm said there was WMD.
There was no need to "invent" or "manufacture" an incident. Had the US
known about the Pearl Harbor attack it could've and would've defended
itself. That would've reduced casualties and damage, but there STILL
would've been a surprise attack during negotiations and ample
justification to go to war.
> With these and other (remember the Maine?) pretextual war triggers
> confirmed, is it any wonder that Pearl Harbor itself is now the subject
> of several conspiracy theories?
"Conspiracy theories" have the same basis as ancient myths, such as
throwing a virgin into the volcano would appease the gods. They are
an attempt to explain the unexplainable or to rationalize bad outcomes
we can't bear to believe actually happened.
It hurts us to believe we were caught unprepared at Pearl Harbor so we
fictionalize excuses and blame. Likewise for the assination of JFK
and 9/11. These fictions might make us feel a little better, a little
more empowered, but do not change the truth.
When things go wrong we look for people to blame when in reality there
is no one to blame or the blame belongs to ourselves. People today
are upset about skyrocketing gasoline prices, but ignore the fact that
we've gone back to buying gas guzzler SUVs, including ones for EVERY
kid the minute they get their license. We haven't built any new
refineries. So is it really any surprise demand for gas is high
against a limited supply?
People are always upset about taxes, but they forget about all the tax
benefits they receive. I have a friend who constantly rails against
"wasteful govt spending". Yet he is a trustee of various volunteer
organizations that get quite a few govt grants. Several of his
organizations is an lobby aggressively for tax funding of their
interests. He gets mad when I point that out to him.
I recently passed by my old elementary school and looked inside.
They've got computers, air conditioning, a PA system in the
auditorium, put brick siding up on ratty 50 year old "temporary"
building and other improvements. Class size is smaller than in my
day. Anyway, all of these improvements above and beyond when I was a
kid costs money from us taxpayers. No one wants to address that
A lot of proponents of "conspiracy" claim they know of "secret"
information. Well, if it's so "secret", how the heck do they know it?
You'd think if there was really a conspiracy going on they'd be
especially careful to keep the "secrets" actually secret.
Indeed, some of the "secrets" conspirators love to whisper about
aren't secret at all. Critics of the a-bomb claim the US "covered up"
attempts by Japan to surrender. Actually, there was no coverup
whatsoever. Those surrender attempts made the front page of the New
York Times at the time they were offered during the war. The
conspiracy people don't bother to share the _full text_ of such
articles describing exactly what was offered (a cease fire with Japan
keeping its military and conquered countries) and why the offer was
rejected (we didn't go to war to allow Japan to keep conquered lands
and a nasty viscious military; and we certainly didn't allow Germany
The people who decided to deploy the atomic bombs had overwhelming
evidence it was the right thing to do. They knew Japan was run by a
viscious and ruthless military dictatorship. They knew the bomb was
more than just an efficient weapon using 1 plane instead of 300--it
would be a psychological shock. They wanted the war to end quickly to
save both American and Japanese lives and keep the Russians out of
Japan. The bomb accomplished all of that.
[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: Too bad the people who did not know
about the possibility of Pearl Harbor did not read the Honolulu Adver-
tiser the Friday before, when its lead story told about the very stong
possibility of an attack by 'the Japs, over the weekend'. And although
the Japanese had planned the attack for Monday morning, _someone_
neglected to recall the International Date Line. It was late at night
Sunday when they started out from Japan; dateline moved it back to
Saturday night. PAT]