December 7, 2012

"On Dec. 7, 1941, when Japanese planes attacked Pearl Harbor..."

"... I was working as a reporter for the Hono­lulu Star-Bulletin."
After a week of war, I wrote a story directed at Hawaii’s women; I thought it would be useful for them to know what I had seen. It might help prepare them for what lay ahead. But my editors thought the graphic content would be too upsetting for readers and decided not to run my article. It appears here for the first time.

38 comments:

Franklin said...

Haven't you heard? We're the bad guys for using an A bomb to end the war.

Carol said...

Sounds a lot like 9/11 - Pearl Harbor, the Titanic and the Hindenberg all rolled into one.

LCB said...

Wow...that was a great read. All of the history books seem to focus on the military aspect. Not so much on the damage to civilian properties and the death of civilians.

Hagar said...

Also better English than most anything you see in the papers these days.

damikesc said...

How times have (not) changed.

Still got to treat women like weak, pathetic, little children.

Feminisim worked WONDERS.

Feminism --- the belief that patronizing women is the same thing as really viewing them as equals.

MadisonMan said...

Re: WWII, there was an obit in the paper today for a local who, due to a coin flip loss, was not on the Enola Gay.

Link.

edutcher said...

Had there been no A-bomb, she would have been right about the war lasting 7 years.

The final assault on Japan would not have been limited to southern Kyushu and central Honshu. The plan was the the rest of Kyushu, the major population centers on Honshu, and Hokkaido would all have to be reduced as well as landings in Korea and the liberation of Shanghai and Peking.

All of which would have been American enterprises.

PS I know, Barry gets all wee-wee thinking about MacArthur taking the surrender of Japan on the fantail of the big Mo in Tokyo bay.

Inga said...

An amazing account. Its too bad that her story wasn't allowed to be published. It's graphic, but respectful of the dead. This reporter wasn't weak or childlike, nor are the female reporters since her who report from countries engaged in war. The editors should've given women of Hawaii more credit.

I spoke at length with a Croatian nurse I worked with, who was living in Kosovo when the war broke out. Her husband was away in Croatia, as was the rest of her family. She bundled up her two children and took the perilous road trip that almost ended their lives several times. Between the fighting, bombing and militias in uniforms, out of uniforms, she said she didn't know who was the enemy, everyone with a gun was the enemy.

Also talked to Bosnian women who spoke of atrocities committed by the Serbs, which included rape and seeing their husbands shot in front of their eyes, or taken away, never to be seen again.

War isn't always so distant, as the one in Afghanistan.

Shouting Thomas said...

Some man forgot to do his duty and oppress this woman to prevent her from writing for a newspaper.

What happened?

They weren't beating the women into submission?

The Drill SGT said...

Truman was the last good Democratic president.

I think because he was farmer, a small business person and commanded an Artillery battery in combat. All occupations that keep you grounded in reality...

The Drill SGT said...

Shouting Thomas said...
Some man forgot to do his duty and oppress this woman to prevent her from writing for a newspaper.

What happened?


The other Roosevelt (not the good one) drafted him...

The Drill SGT said...




The Drill SGT said...


The most interesting bit of history to me from that day, is the USS Ward.

The Ward was the duty destroyer, on patrol outside the sub barriers into Pearl at dawn on Dec 7th. Their AAR:


From: Commanding Officer.
To: The Commandant, Fourteenth Naval District.
(1) Commander Destroyer Division EIGHTY.
(2) Commander Inshore Patrol.

Subject: Sinking of a Japanese Submarine by U.S.S. Ward.


While patrolling Pearl Harbor Entrance on Sunday, December 7, 1941, the U.S.S. Ward attacked an unidentified submarine in the Restricted Area off the Harbor.
The facts are as follows:

At 0637 the Officer-of-the-Deck said, "Captain come on the bridge". A conning tower with periscope of submarine was visible. She was apparently headed for Pearl Harbor trailing the U.S.S. Antares. The Antares was standing toward the channel entrance towing a lighter.
At 0640 the attack was started. The Ward bore down on the submarine while accelerating from 5 to 25 knots.
At 0645 the Ward opened fire with No. 1 and 3 guns and began dropping depth charges. One shot was fired from each gun. The shot from No. 1 gun missed, passing directly over the conning tower. The shot from No. 3 gun fired at a range of 560 yards or less struck the submarine at the waterline which was the junction of the hull and coning tower. Damage was seen by several members of the crew. This was a square positive hit. There was no evidence of ricochet. The submarine was seen to heel over to starboard. The projectile was not seen to explode outside the hull of the submarine. There was no splash of any size that might results from an explosion or ricochet.
Immediately after being hit the submarine appeared to slow and sink. She ran into our depth charge barrage and appeared to be directly over an exploding charge. The depth charges were set for 100 feet.
The submarine sank in 1200 feet of water and could not be located with supersonic detector. There was a large amount of oil on the surface where the depth charges exploded.
The attack was made at 0645 which was before Pearl Harbor was bombed by Japanese planes.
A dispatch by voice transmission was sent to Commandant, Fourteenth Naval District at 0645 which stated:
"We have attacked, fired upon, and dropped depth charges on a submarine operating in defensive sea areas."


The duty officer took no action in the more than an hour before the air attack, other than to query the Ward...

How things might have been different...

Indigo Red said...

Franklin said...
Haven't you heard? We're the bad guys for using an A bomb to end the war.


I've actually been told by young folk that the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor because we dropped the A-Bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Sigivald said...

Did we give up when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor?

EMD said...

My grandfather was at Schofield on 12/7/41.

I never heard a peep about what happened.

Shouting Thomas said...

After her journalism career, Elizabeth P. McIntosh served in the Office of Strategic Services and the Central Intelligence Agency before retiring to Prince William County. She is the author of four books.

Jeez, how did she do that while barefoot, pregnant and handcuffed to the stove?

hombre said...

In the wake of the attack on Pearl Harbor the Obama Administration has been searching for the cause. It has been discovered that an obscure filmmaker in Southern California recently completed and distributed a film holding the Emperor of Japan up to ridicule, thereby insulting the Japanese people.

It is estimated that the film has been seen by 221 people, 3 of whom were Japanese.

The State Department has issued an apology to the Japanese, condemning the film.

The filmmaker was last seen in the custody of federal officials.

Colonel Angus said...

Haven't you heard? We're the bad guys for using an A bomb to end the war.

No Pearl Harbor, no Hiroshima.

chuckR said...

I'm sick and tired of hearing about the especial immorality of the A-bombs. AAF General Curtis Lemay already had a way to kill 100,000 people, but it took ~1000 B-29s. It was no cleaner a death. The A-bomb was an improvement in efficiency. And before the bombs were dropped, he had another 1000 B-29s on order. This still wouldn't have prevented far more deaths on both sides during Operation Downfall - the invasion of the Japanese main islands.

"You cannot qualify war in harsher terms than I will. War is cruelty, and you cannot refine it; and those who brought war into our country deserve all the curses and maledictions a people can pour out. I know I had no hand in making this war, and I know I will make more sacrifices to-day than any of you to secure peace."

William Tecumseh Sherman

Colonel Angus said...

If as much attention was focused on Japanese atrocities in China, Korea and the Phillipines as is the Nazis in Europe, you probably would not hear as much wailing and gnashing of teeth over the use of the A bomb.

Imperial Japan had about the same view of non Japanese as did the Nazis did with non Aryans.

Oso Negro said...

Inga, there was nothing whatsoever "distant" about the war in Afghanistan when my son was deployed there with the USMC. Nothing distant at all.

Methadras said...

This goes out to my father-in-law, may he rest in peace. Who was a Pearl Harbor Survivor and lived with us the last 5 years of his life. I'll never forget the stories and watching football together. He is sorely missed.

ken in sc said...

My Dad was on an LST en route for the invasion of Japan when bombs were dropped. If not for the bombs, I would not be here.

ndspinelli said...

All one needs to do is read Unbroken and they will have no doubt Truman was correct..NO DOUBT!

Inga said...

OsoNegro, nor the war in Afghanistan distant for me, as my daughter is still there as we speak.

She'll be there over the Holidays, even though her year there is winding down. I'm not saying when she comes home though. I just sent away five boxes of Christmas goodies and snacks, enough for her to share.

Inga said...

OsoNegro, my daughter is also with the Marines.

AllenS said...

Seventy years from 2001, you'll see pictures of people jumping from the Twin Towers when they were on fire. It will be, like, totally awesome, and who knew?

edutcher said...

chuckR said...

I'm sick and tired of hearing about the especial immorality of the A-bombs. AAF General Curtis Lemay already had a way to kill 100,000 people, but it took ~1000 B-29s. It was no cleaner a death. The A-bomb was an improvement in efficiency. And before the bombs were dropped, he had another 1000 B-29s on order. This still wouldn't have prevented far more deaths on both sides during Operation Downfall - the invasion of the Japanese main islands.

There's an excellent book, "Hell To Pay", by D M Giangreco, which goes over a lot of declassified material to prove the bomb was absolutely necessary.

Anyone interested in rebutting the Lefties on this should read it.

Big Mike said...

Anyone interested in rebutting the Lefties on this should read it.

You cannot rebut the lefties. They are (politically) correct and you are not and they don't need silly little things like facts.

You can verify with Inga, garage, or Robert Cook if you'd like.

Colonel Angus said...

You cannot rebut the lefties.

Indeed. Contemporary liberals will argue that we gave Japan no choice but to launch a sneak attack.

chuckR said...

In 2000, the US investigated making new Purple Hearts. According to Giangreco, as of 2003, the US still had 120000 on hand dating to WWII. None had to be made after WWII due to the anticipated casualties from Operation Downfall being avoided. (Some small number were made anyway in the intervening years - that's just how bureaucracies work).

wyo sis said...

"After her journalism career, Elizabeth P. McIntosh served in the Office of Strategic Services and the Central Intelligence Agency before retiring to Prince William County. She is the author of four books.

Jeez, how did she do that while barefoot, pregnant and handcuffed to the stove?"

You should read her book. There's little doubt that the talents of the women of the OSS made a huge contribution to winning the war, but they could have been much better utilized.

chuckR said...

Those OSS ladies included one Julia Child. She wrote some books, too. These were some very smart gals.

EMD said...

OsoNegro, my daughter is also with the Marines.

Yes, we know.

Inga said...

EMD, but Oso Negro didn't.

Inga said...

Wyo Sis I just go the article, by Linda McCarthy, "Betty McIntosh OSS Spy Girl", complete with pictures, she was stationed in China with Julia Child, another OSS spy girl and knew her quite well. Her books are pretty hard to find and the ones I saw on Amazon are quite expensive.

wyo sis said...

Inga
If you search a little and don't care if you get a used copy you can get "Sisterhood of Spies for as little as a penny plus shipping. It's worth reading especially if you like reading history.
I wonder what those women think of Julia. They were the real feminists.

The Drill SGT said...

chuckR said...
Those OSS ladies included one Julia Child. She wrote some books, too. These were some very smart gals.


I suspect that she AND her husband (who was OSS as well) went on into the CIA. Husband and wife teams are fairly common on the operational side.