Part IV. Responsibilities in Washington ........................... 159
Basing the Pacific Fleet at Hawaii .............................. 159
Defensive facilities available in Hawaii ........................ 163
Transfer of Pacific Fleet units to the Atlantic ................. 167
"ABCD" understanding? ........................................... 168
Avoidance of war ................................................ 172
Intelligence available in Washington ............................ 179
The "Magic" .................................................. 179
Policy with respect to dissemination of magic ................ 180
"Ships in harbor" reports ....................................... 181
Nature of consular espionage ................................. 181
Conclusions with respect to "Ships in harbor" reports ........ 189
The "Winds code" ................................................ 191
"Hidden word" code .............................................. 192
The "Deadline messages" ......................................... 193
Dispatches indicating fraudulent nature of negotiations after
November 28, 1941 ............................................. 195
Status of diplomatic negotiations and the Army dispatch of
November 27 ................................................... 198
Failure to follow-up on the Short reply of November 28 .......... 201
The "Berlin message" ............................................ 204
Code destruction intelligence ................................... 205
The McCollum dispatch ........................................... 206
VII C O N T E N T S
Part IV. Responsibilities in Washington-Continued Page
Events of December 6 and 7, 1941 ................................ 209
The "Pilot message" ........................................... 210
The fourteen part memorandum .................................. 211
First thirteen parts ........................................ 211
Analysis and significance of first thirteen parts proper .... 212
Military significance of "Pilot" and "13-part" messages
apart from messages proper ................................ 219
The fourteenth part ....................................... 221
"One o'clock" and final code destruction messages ............... 222
Events attending transmittal of the December 7 dispatch ...... 224
Choice of facilities ......................................... 225
Significance of the "One o'clock" and code destruction
messages ................................................... 226
Significant messages translated after the attack ................ 228
Intelligence concerning Hawaiian defenses ..................... 228
Considerations responsible for delays in translations ......... 230
Conclusions with respect to intelligence available in
Washington which was not supplied Hawaii ...................... 232
Estimate of the situation in Washington ......................... 234
Nature of responsibilities ...................................... 237
Duties in Hawaii ............................................. 237
Duties in Washington ......................................... 238
Unity of command ................................................ 240
General observations ............................................ 245
The "Wyman Matter" ........................................... 245
The Philippine Attack ........................................ 246
Prior inquiries concerning the Pearl Harbor attack ........... 246
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 159
PART IV. RESPONSIBILITIES IN WASHINGTON
BASING THE PACIFIC FLEET AT HAWAII
Beginning in May of 1940 the entire American Pacific Fleet operated in
the Hawaiian theater with Pearl Harbor as its base.  Prior to that
time the fleet had been based on the west coast with certain contingents
operating from time to time in the Hawaiian area. Admiral James O.
Richardson, who was commander in chief of the Pacific Fleet in 1940,
stated that while the fleet was in Hawaii incident to exercises during
the summer of 1940 he received instructions to announce to the press
that "at his request" the fleet would continue at Hawaii for the purpose
of carrying out further exercises.  It was his understanding that the
decision to base the Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor was with a view to
its providing a restraining influence on Japan.  At the time of
original contemplation it appears that the fleet was to remain at Hawaii
on a relatively temporary basis.  Admiral Richardson did not concur
in the decision to station the fleet there and so informed the Chief of
Naval Operations.  He testified with respect to his objections as
"My objections for remaining there were, primarily, that you only had
one port, secure port, and very crowded, no recreation facilities for
the men, a long distance from Pearl Harbor to the city of Honolulu,
inadequate transportation inadequate airfields.
"A carrier cannot conduct all training for her planes from the carrier
deck. In order to launch her planes she must be underway at substantial
speed, using up large amounts of fuel. So that wherever carriers are
training their squadrons there must be flying fields available, so that
while the ship herself is undergoing overhaul, or repair, or upkeep, the
planes may conduct training, flying from the flying fields
"There were inadequate and restricted areas for anchorages of the fleet;
to take them in and out of Pearl Harbor wasted time.
"Another reason, which was a substantial one: Americans are perfectly
willing to go anywhere, stay anywhere, do anything when there is a job
to be done and they can see the reason for their being there, but to
keep the fleet, during what the men considered normal peacetimes, away
from the coast and away from their families, away from recreation,
rendered it difficult to maintain a high state of morale that is
essential to successful training.
"For those reasons, and because I believed that the fleet could be
better prepared for war on a normal basis on the west coast, I wanted to
return to the west coast."
As a result of a visit to Washington in July of 1940, Admiral Richardson
stated he gained three distinct impressions: 
"*First*. That the Fleet was retained in the Hawaiian area solely to
support diplomatic representations and as a deterrent to Japanese
"*Second*. That there was no intention of embarking on actual
hostilities against Japan;
"*Third*. That the immediate mission of the Fleet was accelerated
training and absorption of new personnel and the attainment of a maximum
 See committee exhibit No. 9 for file of correspondence between
Admirals Stark and Richardson concerning, among other things, the matter
of basing the fleet at Hawaii. For a description of the base at Pearl
Harbor see appendix F to this report.
 Committee record, p. 669.
 See committee record, p. 682, also Navy Court of Inquiry, pp. 1057,
 Committee record, p 668.
 See committee exhibit No. 9.
 Committee record, pp. 674, 675.
 See memorandum dated October 22 1940 from Admiral Richardson to the
Chief of Naval Operations. Committee exhibit No.
160 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
material and personnel readiness consistent with its retention in the
In a memorandum for the Secretary of Navy dated September 12, 1940,
Admiral Richardson pointed out several disadvantages from a Navy point
of view of retaining the fleet in the Hawaiian area and stated: 
"If factors other than purely naval ones are to influence the decision
as to where the fleet should be based at this time, the naval factors
should be fully presented and carefully considered, as well as the
probable effect of the decision on the readiness of the Fleet. In other
words, is it more important to lend strength to diplomatic
representations in the Pacific by basing the Fleet in the Hawaiian Area,
than to facilitate its preparation for active service in any area by
basing the major part of it on normal Pacific coast bases?"
During October of 1940 while in Washington he talked with President
Roosevelt at which time the President informed him that the Pacific
Fleet was retained in the Hawaiian area in order to exercise a
restraining influence on the actions of Japan. Admiral Richardson
"I stated that in my opinion the presence of the fleet in Hawaii might
influence a civilian political government, but that Japan had a military
government which knew that the fleet was undermanned, unprepared for
war, and had no training or auxiliary ships without which it could not
undertake active operations. Therefore, the presence of the Fleet in
Hawaii could not exercise a restraining influence on Japanese action. I
further stated we were more likely to make the Japanese feel that we
meant business if a train were assembled and the fleet returned to the
Pacific coast, the complements filled, the ships docked, and fully
supplied with ammunition, provisions, stores, and fuel, and then
stripped for war operations."
He stated that the President's comment to the foregoing was in effect,
"Despite what you believe, I know that the presence of the fleet in the
Hawaiian area, has had, and is now having a restraining influence on the
actions of Japan." 
Admiral Richardson testified that he replied that he still did not
believe this to be the case and that he knew the Pacific Fleet was
disadvantageously disposed to prepare for or to initiate war operations,
whereupon the President said:  "I can be convinced of the
desirability of returning the battleships to the west coast if I can be
given a good statement which will convince the American people and the
Japanese Government that in bringing the battleships to the west coast
we are not stepping backward."
It is clear from consideration of the evidence that Admiral Richardson's
position was based on the feeling that the fleet could be better
prepared for war if based on the west coast and not because he feared
for the security of the fleet at Pearl Harbor.  In a letter to
Admiral Stark on November 28 concerning the matter of the security of
the Pacific Fleet in the Hawaiian area he said :  "*This feature of
 Committee exhibit No. 9.
 Committee record pp. 682, 683.
 Committee record, p. 683.
 See, however, in this connection the testimony of Mr. Sumner
Welles, committee record, pp. 1124,1125.
 Committee exhibit No. 9. This comment was made by Admiral
Richardson pursuant to a letter from Admiral Stark dated November 22,
1940, in which the latter had stated, among other things: "Since the
Taranto incident my concern for the safety of the Fleet in Pearl Harbor,
already great, has become even greater. This concern has to do both with
possible activities on the part of the Japanese residents of Hawaii and
with the possibilities of attack coming from overseas. By far the most
profitable object of sudden attack in Hawaiian waters would be the Fleet
units based in that area. Without question the safety of the units is
paramount and imposes on the Commander-in-Chief and the forces afloat a
responsibility in which he must receive the complete support of
Commandant Fourteen, and of the Army. I realize most fully that you are
giving this problem comprehensive thought. My object in writing you is
to find out what steps the Navy Department and the War Department should
be taking to provide additional equipment and additional protective
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 161
does not give me a great deal of concern and, I think, can be easily
provided for.*" Admiral Stark testified that Admiral Richardson did not
raise any question concerning the safety of the fleet at Pearl Harbor as
a reason for bringing it back to the west coast. 
Referring to the decision to base the fleet at Hawaii Admiral Kimmel
"When I assumed command, the decision to base the Fleet in the Hawaiian
area was an historical fact. The target and base facilities required to
train the Fleet for war were in the process of being moved from the West
Coast to Hawaii. The Fleet had been practically without gunnery practice
for nearly a year due to the previous uncertainty as to the location of
its base. Any further uncertainty would have delayed the availability of
the mobile facilities to maintain, repair and train the Fleet. The
resulting loss of time in starting intensive training would have been
disastrous. This was my view when I took command. My appointment was in
no wise contingent upon any acquiescence on my part in a decision
already made months before to keep the Fleet in Hawaiian waters."
Admiral Kimmel stated that during his visit to Washington in June of
1941, he told the President and Admiral Stark of certain dangers to the
fleet at Pearl Harbor, including air attack, blocking of the harbor and
similar matters. He said that generally he felt the fleet should not
remain at Pearl Harbor but he made no protests and submitted no
recommendation for withdrawal of any of the battleships or carriers.
Regardless of the position taken by the commander in chief of the
Pacific Fleet during 1940 with respect to basing the fleet at Pearl
Harbor, extensive measures were taken thereafter and long before the
outbreak of war to improve the fleet's security at Hawaii.  The
Secretary of State, as well as our Ambassador to Japan were satisfied
that the presence of the Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor did in fact prove
a deterrent to Japanese action as did the Chief of Naval Operations.
 Referring to the presence of our fleet at Hawaii, the Japanese
Foreign Minister in June of 1940 stated to Ambassador Grew that "the
continued stay of our fleet in those waters (Hawaiian) constitutes an
implied suspicion of the intentions of Japan vis-a-vis the Netherlands
East Indies and the South Seas * * *."  As Secretary Hull stated,
 "The worst bandit * * * doesn't like for the most innocent citizen
to point an unloaded pistol or an unloaded gun at him at * *. They will
take cognizance of naval establishments, somewhere on the high seas,
whether fully equipped or not." The degree to which the presence of the
Pacific Fleet in Hawaiian waters influenced Japanese action necessarily
cannot be precisely determined but the fact is the Japanese did not
strike at the Netherlands East Indies and the Malay barrier for more
than a year and a half after it was contemplated she would make such a
The wisdom and merit of the decision to base the Pacific Fleet at Hawaii
cannot be divorced from the high Government policy of which that
decision was a part. As has elsewhere been observed, the traditional
interest of the United States in the Pacific and our determination
 committee record, p. 5687.
 committee record, pp. 6661, 6662.
 Navy court of inquiry record, p. 367.
 See section, infra, "Defensive Facilities Available in Hawaii."'
 See testimony of secretary Hull, committee record, pp. 1203-1205,
1452, 1464, 1603, 1608; testimony of Mr. Grew, committee record, pp.
1570, 1738, 1919, 1969.
In a letter of April 3, 1941, to the commanders in chief, Pacific Fleet,
Asiatic Fleet, and Atlantic Fleet, Admiral Stark expressed the feeling
that beyond question the presence of the Pacific Fleet in Hawaii had a
stabilizing effect in the Far East. See committee exhibit No. 106.
 See "Foreign Relations," vol. II, p. 69.
 Committee record, p. 1603.
162 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
to aid the valiant Chinese fighting under insuperable odds the
Juggernaut of Japanese aggression made imperative our taking every
reasonable step which would assist in deterring the insatiable Japanese
ambition for conquest and at the same time bolster flagging Chinese
morale. Basing of the fleet at Pearl Harbor was but one of the steps
taken in this direction. 
The fact that it had been decided to make Hawaii the base of the fleet
did not require that all of the battleships and other substantial fleet
units should be *in* Pearl Harbor on the morning of December 7 after the
responsible commander had been warned of war and ordered to execute an
appropriate *defensive deployment*.  The very words defensive
deployment could have meant nothing if not that the fleet should be
moved and stationed in such manner as to afford maximum defensive
security not only to the fleet itself but to the Hawaiian Islands, the
west coast, and the Panama Canal as well. This order required the
deploying of vessels in the Hawaiian waters; which afforded the
commander in chief a vast scope of operations, and it was left to his
judgment and discretion as to what specific action was required
consistent with his responsibilities. It has certainly never been
suggested that because a particular harbor has been designated as the
base for a fleet its vessels are thereby restricted to that harbor,
particularly after an order has been issued for their employment.
It remains a debatable question as to whether the Pacific Fleet as
exposed to any greater danger by reason of the fact that it was based at
Hawaii. The 360 perimeter of the islands afforded unlimited avenues for
operations and the maximum channels for escape in the event of attack by
a hostile superior force. The west coast, on the other hand, afforded
only a 180 scope of operation with no avenues for escape from a
superior attacking force and left only the alternative of proceeding
into the teeth of such a force. Nor does it appear that the fleet was
exposed to any greater danger from the standpoint of espionage by reason
of its being at Hawaii.  The evidence before this Committee reflects
that Tokyo was receiving as much information, if not more information,
from its diplomatic establishments which operated outside the
restraining counterespionage efforts of our own Government, located in
Panama, on the west coast, and in Manila as from the Honolulu consulate.
 There is a strong possibility that Japan would have taken the
Hawaiian Islands by amphibious operations as she did in the case of so
many other outlying Pacific Islands had the fleet not been based at
Pearl Harbor.  Fur-
 See Part I, supra, "Diplomatic Background of the Pearl Harbor
 In the course of counsel's examination, Admiral Turner was asked:
"During this time after around November 27 to December 7, in all your
discussions around the Navy with those in authority was any
consideration given to the question of whether the fleet should be moved
out of Pearl Harbor and sent to sea?"
Admiral TURNER. "No, there was not that I recall. I assumed that most or
all of it would be at sea."
Question. "Well, why did you assume that?"
Admiral TURNER. "Well, that was the place for them under Admiral
Kimmel's operating plan for their deployment." Committee record, pp.
The evidence reflects that the Office of Naval Operations in Washington
did not know the exact location of the various units of the Pacific
Fleet. See committee record, p. 13956.
 See section "The Role of Espionage in the Attack," Part III, this
 In referring to Japanese espionage activity, Admiral Stark said:
"We had felt that *not only in Hawaii* but at practically all our given
posts the Japs knew everything we were doing." Committee record, p.
 In the course of his testimony before the committee, General Short
was asked whether he believed, assuming that the fleet had been
withdrawn to the west coast and conditions at Pearl Harbor were other
wise the same, the Japanese could have made a landing with the striking
air forces that they had and brought the planes down as they did. He
replied: "It would have been thoroughly possible. If they had sent as
large a force as they sent against the Philippines they could have made
the landing." Committee record pp. 8293, 8294.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 163
thermore, had the fleet been based on the west coast a raid on our west
coast cities and the Panama Canal could not have been entirely repulsed.
For it is agreed as a military proposition that even with the most
effective resistance to an enemy air attack some units will inevitably
get through the screen of defense and carry home the attack.
In this connection, the opinion has been expressed by several naval
witnesses that it was their belief Japan would attack our Pacific Fleet
*wherever it might be* at the very outset of hostilities with a view to
immobilizing it, temporarily at least, as a restraining and deterring
influence on Japanese sea-borne operations in Pacific Far Eastern
waters.  Under this view, which has the weight of logic and the
experience of December 7, the fact the fleet was based at Hawaii bore no
conclusive relationship to nor conditioned the Japanese decision to
attack our Pacific Fleet.
As has been indicated, the basing of the fleet at Hawaii is inseparable
from the global plan of operations in which the Pacific Fleet was to
perform only one phase. It was an integral part of our policy and action
in the Atlantic and can only be questioned save as one presumes to
challenge the policies of the United States Government from 1937 to 1941
and our determination to aid the impoverished free peoples of the world
striving in desperation to stem the overpowering tide of Axis aggression
and world conquest.
DEFENSIVE FACILITIES AVAILABLE IN HAWAII
There can be no question that Hawaii was regarded as the best equipped
of our outposts and possessed the greatest potential for its own
defense.  In this connection General Marshall testified: 
"I will say as to the attack on Pearl Harbor, we felt that was a vital
installation, but *we also felt that that was the only installation we
had anywhere that was reasonably well equipped. Therefore, we were not
worried about it. In our opinion, the commanders had been alerted. In
our opinion, there was nothing more we could give them at the time for
the purpose of defense. In our opinion, that was one place that had
enough within itself to put up a reasonable defense*.
"MacArthur, in the Philippines, was just beginning to get something. His
position was pitiable, and it was still in a state of complete flux,
with the ships on the ocean en route out there and the planes half
delivered and half still to go.
"The Panama Canal was quite inadequate at that period, seriously
inadequate in planes and, of course, of vast importance to anything in
"*The only place we had any assurance about was Hawaii, and for that
reason we had less concern about Hawaii because we had worked on it very
industriously, we had a tremendous amount of correspondence about it,
and we felt reasonably secure at that one point*.
"Therefore we felt that it would be a great hazard for the Japanese to
The correspondence between the Chief of Staff and General Short during
1941,  as well as that between the Chief of Naval Operations and
Admiral Kimmel,  manifest clearly the mutual desire to improve
 See section, supra, Part III, "The Role of Espionage in the
 In the course of committee examination Admiral Turner was asked:
"Did you consider the fleet in Hawaii prepared for that attack at the
time it did come?"
Admiral TURNER. "Yes, sir, within the limits of the material
improvements program, I felt that the fleet was efficient and was ready
Question. "You felt confident that the Pacific Fleet based at Pearl
Harbor was ready for war on December 7, 1941?"
Admiral TURNER. "Yes, sir, and further that the district was ready for
war within the limits of the material that we had been able to provide.
*We all had the utmost confidence in the command of the fleet and the
command ashore*." Committee record, pp. 5253, 5254.
 Committee record, pp. 13792, 13793.
 See committee exhibit No. 53.
 Id., No. 106.
164 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
to the utmost the defensive facilities available to the Hawaiian
commanders. But both General Marshall and Admiral Stark, in addition to
their interest in Hawaii, had the enormous task and responsibility of
allocating to many places, consistent with an ever-expanding global
conflict, the military and naval equipment that was produced during the
year 1941.  They had the obligation to spread the results of our
productive efforts in those quarters where the needs and exigencies
appeared in their best judgment to be most pressing. Our defensive
facilities on the mainland were in great need of improvement Panama and
the Philippines were in woeful need of additional equipment; the Nation
had committed itself to aiding the Chinese who had been fighting
Japanese aggression for 4 years with little more than sheer courage and
the will to exist as a nation; we were determined that supplies being
shipped under lend-lease should not be destroyed by German and Italian
raiders before they reached their destination necessitating thereby the
building up of our naval power in the Atlantic: we were determined to
aid Britain and Russia to the extent of our capacity for our own self-
protection before the overpowering might of the German war machine had
destroyed the last vestige of resistance on the continent of Europe and
we were left alone to stem the Axis thrust for world conquest-all of
these considerations were a part of the problem posed for the Chief of
Staff and the Chief of Naval Operations in making allocations of the
materiel at hand. It should be noted that most of the lend-lease
transfers effected prior to December 7, 1941, were in a category in
which, by the terms of the Lend-Lease Act, it was provided that
transfers to foreign governments could be made only after consultation
with the Chief of Staff of the Army or the Chief of Naval Operations of
the Navy. The Chief of Staff or the Chief of Naval Operations personally
approved these transfers. 
The only justifiable allegation concerning the shortage of equipment at
Hawaii relating to the failure to detect the Japanese task force was the
fact that insufficient long-range patrol planes were available to
conduct a 360 distant search from Oahu. As has been seen, however,
adequate patrol planes were on hand to cover the vital and more
dangerous sectors.  Referring to the lack of long-range planes, it
is in order to determine the extent to which such planes were available
and conceivably might have been sent to Hawaii.
In the case of 210 B-17's and B-24's, Army heavy bombers adaptable for
distant reconnaissance, delivered between February 1 and November 30,
1941, none were shipped under lend-lease and a total
 In a letter of November 7,1941, Admiral Stark pointed out to
Admiral Kimmel the difficulties experienced through shortage of material
needs: "I note the great desirability of *many* things for the Pacific
Fleet-particularly destroyers and cruisers. We *just* haven't *any*
destroyers or cruisers to give you at the moment, nor is the prospect
bright for getting any for you in the near future. I fully appreciate
your need for them. We could profitably employ twice the number we now
have if they were available. I will not burden you with a recital of
King's troubles but he is up against it for DDs for escort-and defense
against raiders." (Admiral King at the time was commander in chief of
the Atlantic Fleet.) Committee record, p. 5575.
 See letter from Chester T. Lane, Deputy Commissioner, Office of
Foreign Liquidation Commissions, Department of State, concerning the
organization of Lend-Lease. Committee record, p. 14095 et seq.
 See Part III, supra.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 165
of 113 were sold for cash to foreign countries; 12 B-17's were shipped
to Hawaii and 35 to the Philippines. 
With respect to Navy planes, there were no lend-lease transfers of long-
range patrol bombers or scout bombers during the same period. Of a total
of 835 Navy planes of all types delivered during this period, February 1
to November 30, 582 were delivered to the Navy and 253 to foreign
countries (Britain, Canada, Australia, the Netherlands, and Norway)
under cash transactions. Of the 582 planes delivered to the Navy, 218
were sent to the Hawaiian area, 146 of the planes being assigned to
It appears that of 3,128 Army and Navy planes of various types delivered
between February 1 and November 30, 1941, only 177 were shipped under
lend-lease to foreign countries and none of these were capable of
performing distant reconnaissance. The record is clear, therefore, that
the Chief of Staff and the Chief of Naval Operations did not prejudice
our own defenses in approving excessive allocations to foreign
governments. A brief review of the improvement effected in the Hawaiian
situation during the year 1941 will serve to demonstrate the manner in
which the exigencies and problems prevailing in the Pacific were
The total number of Army planes in the Hawaiian Department was virtually
doubled between January 31 and December 7, 1941, having been increased
from 124 to 227 planes. The number of B-17 four-motored bombers was
increased from none on January 31 to 21 as of May 31, 1941, this number
subsequently being reduced to 12 by reason of the transfer of 9 B-17's
to the Philippines in September. As of September 1, 1941, the United
States possessed 109 13-17's
 See enclosure to War Department memorandum to committee counsel
dated March 20,1946, committee exhibit No. 172. In response to a request
of the general counsel of the Committee, the War Department on March 20,
1946, transmitted a tabulation supplied by the Army Air Forces
reflecting, among other things the total deliveries and types of
American-produced planes delivered between February 1 and November 30,
1941, without any break-down as to months. This tabulation reflects a
total of 579 planes delivered having a maximum range *without bombs* in
excess of 1,600 miles. In addition to this figure, the tabulation shows
836 planes delivered having ranges of 2,000 and 1,120 miles with no
break-down indicating how many planes were produced in a particular
range category. The tabulation of plane deliveries was not introduced as
an exhibit by the general counsel until May 23, 1946. General Marshall
appeared before the committee for the second time on April 9, 1946, but
he was asked no questions concerning the dispositions of these planes,
it being noted that General Marshall had earlier testified that Hawaii
had received priority consideration in the disposition of equipment.
Although the tabulation delivered by the War Department on March 20 was
available to the Committee counsel it was not available to the members
of the committee for consideration and examination at the time General
Marshall appeared on April 9.
The committee has thus been placed in the position of not having
inquired concerning the adaptability, design, and potentialities of
these planes with ranges exceeding 1,600 miles; of not having determined
where they may otherwise have been disposed and the exigencies requiring
such dispositions; of not having determined whether there were crews
available to man these planes, of not having determined whether ferrying
facilities were available had they been directed to Hawaii; of not
having determined exactly when the planes were delivered to determine
whether they could have been sent to Hawaii before December 7, 1941; and
of not having determined whether they would satisfy the distant
reconnaissance requirements in Hawaii, among other things.
In the latter connection, however, it is to be noted that General
Martin, commanding general of the Hawaiian Air Forces, under date of
August 20, 1941, recommended the War Department give consideration to
the allotment of "B-17D type airplanes or *other four-engine* bombers
with equal or better performance and operating range" for reconnaissance
purposes, committee exhibit No. 13. It would appear that in the making
of aircraft dispositions the indicated needs of the Hawaiian Department
would be a controlling consideration.
It appears from the evidence before the committee that only 210 of the
Army-type planes delivered between February 1 and November 30, 1941,
were four-engine bombers of a type adaptable to the type of long
distance reconnaissance required by the plans and requirements of the
Hawaiian commanders. It is to be noted that a tabulation of factory
deliveries of bombers to foreign countries appearing on page 12991 of
the Committee record is superseded by Committee exhibit No. 172.
 See enclosure to Navy Department memorandum to committee counsel
dated April 12, 1946. Committee exhibit No. 172.
166 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
disposed: 21 in Hawaii, 7 in Panama, and 81 in the continental United
States.  The number of P-40 pursuit planes was increased from none
in January to 99 as of November 30; and the number of P-36's from 19 to
In the case of the Navy at Hawaii, during January of 1941 a squadron of
12 PBY-3's left the west coast for the Hawaiian area. In April a second
squadron equipped with 12 PBY-3's also moved to Hawaii. In October and
November of 1941, 3 squadrons of 12 planes each and 1 squadron of 6
planes, then in the Hawaiian area, returned to the west coast and
exchanged their PBY-3's for PBY-5's after which they returned to Hawaii.
During this same period the third squadron of Patrol Wing 1, equipped
with 12 new PBY-5's left the west coast for Hawaii. This represents an
over-all increase of 36 in the number of patrol planes between January 1
and November 30 1941.  During the period February 1 to November 30,
1941, 146 planes were assigned to carriers in the Pacific; and on May
13, 1941, 18 planes arrived at Ewa Field, Hawaii, being assigned to a
marine scout bomber squadron. 
The Committee did not inquire into the matter of allocations, generally,
of Army and Navy planes or other equipment to points other than to
Hawaii. There is no evidence before us that General Marshall and Admiral
Stark made dispositions of the materiel available  inconsistent with
their best judgment in the light of the situation as it could be viewed
in the days before Pearl Harbor. 
The question of whether Japan would have struck Hawaii had additional
equipment been available there must be considered in light of the fact
that in their estimates made in the fall of 1941, the Japanese placed
the number of aircraft in Hawaii at roughly twice that of the actual air
strength. Further, during the war games carried on at the Naval War
College, Tokyo, from September 2 to 13, 1941, it was assumed that the
Pearl Harbor striking force would suffer the loss of one-third of its
participating units. [41a] It was specifically assumed that one Akagi-
class carrier and one Soryu-class carrier would be lost.
It is clear that immediately after December 7 every effort was made to
increase the materiel facilities in Hawaii as much as possible,
 Memorandum from War Department dated December 13, 1945. See
committee record p. 14595.
A study contemplating 360 long-distance reconnaissance and attacks,
submitted by the commander of the Army Air Forces in Hawaii on August
20, 1941, and endorsed by the Army commander, called for 180 Army 4-
engine bombers, the B-17's. Committee exhibit No. 13. As of December 7,
there were only 148 B-17's in the entire Army; 35 of these were in the
Philippines, 12 at Hawaii, 8 in the Caribbean area, 6 at Atlantic bases,
and 87 in the continental United States. Committee record, pp. 2865,
 Army aircraft in Hawaiian Department as reflected by AAF monthly
inventories. See also committee exhibit No. 5.
 See enclosure to Navy memorandum for committee counsel dated April
12, 1946. Committee exhibit No. 172.
 As expressed by Mr. Stimson "During those days in November 1941 we
at the War Department had been informed and believed that Hawaii had
been more generously equipped from the Nation's inadequate supplies of
men and ammunitions than either of the other three important Pacific
outposts, and we believed that with the fleet at hand there it was more
capable of defense." Statement of Mr. Stimson to the committee.
Committee record, p. 14,407.
 Admiral Stark testified that he gave to Admiral Kimmel all that he
could of what he had Committee record, pp. 5701-5704.
He said: "We were not able to give the commander in Chief, Pacific Fleet
all the ships and men he wanted but neither were we able to put in the
Atlantic or in the Asiatic Fleet the strength we knew they wanted."
Committee record, p. 5575.
On November 25, Admiral Stark wrote Admiral Kimmel, in part; "We have
sweat blood in the endeavor to divide adequately our forces for a two-
ocean war; but you cannot take inadequate forces and divide them into
two or three parts and get adequate forces anywhere. It was for this
reason that almost as soon as I got here I started working on increasing
the Navy." Committee record, p. 5578.
[41a] See War Department memorandum dated May 21, 1946, transmitting a
letter of the same date from Commander Walter Wilds, Office of the
Chairman of the United States Strategic Bombing Survey, Committee
record, p. 14626. See further, committee record, p. 457.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 167
necessarily at the expense of sacrificing the needs of other
installations. The evidence reflects, however, that it was a very
considerable period of time after the attack before the Nation's
production of war materials was sufficient to approach satisfaction of
all the Hawaiian requirements.
Both Admiral Kimmel and General Short had repeatedly requested more
equipment, and that their needs and requests were not ignored  is
made clear by the improved situation effected during 1941.  The same
requests made by the Hawaiian commanders were coming from many other
commanders and many other quarters. As virtually all witnesses have
testified, alert commanders are always striving to improve and increase
their equipment, facilities, and personnel; and it is doubtful if at any
time even during the war any commander ever had all he wanted or thought
he needed. 
It is necessarily speculative as to how additional equipment in Hawaii
might have altered the situation on December 7 inasmuch as the
facilities which were available were not brought into the fight. 
TRANSFER OF PACIFIC FLEET UNITS TO THE ATLANTIC
In May of 1941 three battleships, one aircraft carrier, four cruisers,
and nine destroyers were detached from the Pacific Fleet and transferred
to the Atlantic. This shift was contemplated by the Navy basic war plan,
WPL-46.  In a letter to Admiral Stark dated September 12, 1941,
Admiral Kimmel expressed concern regarding possible further transfers
from the Pacific to the Atlantic: 
"The emphasis, in the President's speech, on the Atlantic also brings up
the question of a possible further weakening of this Fleet. A strong
Pacific Fleet is unquestionably a deterrent to Japan-a weaker one may be
an invitation. I cannot escape the conclusion that the maintenance of
the status quo out here is almost entirely a matter of the strength of
this Fleet. It must not be reduced and, in event of hostilities, must be
increased if we are to undertake a bold offensive. "
 In an aide memoir concerning "Defense of Hawaii" submitted by the
War Department to the President in May of 1941, the following
observations were made:
"*The Island of Oahu*, due to its fortification, its garrison, and its
physical characteristics, is believed to be the strongest fortress in
"To reduce Oahu the enemy must transport overseas an expeditionary force
capable of executing a forced landing against a garrison of
approximately 35,000 men, manning 127 fixed coast defense guns, 211
antiaircraft weapons, and more than 3,000 artillery pieces and automatic
weapons available for beach defense. Without air superiority this is an
"*Air Defense*. With adequate air defense, enemy carriers, naval escorts
and transports will begin to come under air attack at a distance of
approximately, 50 miles. This attack will increase in intensity until
when within 200 miles of the objective the enemy forces will be subject
to attack by all types of bombardment closely supported by our most
"Hawaiian Air Defense. Including the movement of aviation now in
progress Hawaii will be defended by 35 of our most modern flying
fortresses, 35 medium range bombers, 13 light bombers, 150 pursuit of
which 105 are of our most modern type. In addition Hawaii is capable of
reinforcement by heavy bombers from the mainland by air. With this force
available a major attack against Oahu is considered impracticable.
"In point of sequence, sabotage is first to be expected and may, within
a very limited time, cause great damage. On this account, and in order
to assure strong control, it would be high]y desirable to set up a
military control of the islands prior to the likelihood of our
involvement in the Far East." Committee exhibit No. 59.
 As pointed out by Admiral Stark, "During 1940 and 1941, many of the
shortcomings of Pearl Harbor as a base, disclosed by the long stay of
the Pacific Fleet, were remedied." Committee record, p. 5587. See in
this connection the Annual Report of the Commander in Chief, United
States Pacific Fleet, for the year ending June 30, 1941. Committee
record pp. 5587-5589.
 See testimony of Admiral Turner committee record, p. 5254,
concerning the insatiable desire of field commanders for materiel. He
said: "* * * you never have enough, you always want more and you want
things to be better."
 Admiral Turner testified he believed that the Pacific Fleet at
Hawaii was sufficient on December 7 1941, to have defeated or greatly
reduced the effect of the Japanese raid on Hawaii if it had been fully
alerted Committee record, pp. 5258, 5259.
 See statement of Admiral Stark, committee record, p. 5591.
 Committee exhibit No. 106. See testimony of Admiral Stark,
committee record, p. 5591.
 Admiral Kimmel commented in his prepared statement to the
committee: "When I was in Washington in June 1941, it was seriously
proposed to transfer from the Pacific to the Atlantic an additional
detachment to consist of three battleships, four cruisers, two squadrons
of destroyers, and a carrier. I opposed this strenuously. The transfer
was not made." Committee record, p. 6680.
168 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
Replying on September 23, Admiral Stark wrote the commander in chief of
the Pacific Fleet: 
"We have no intention of further reducing the Pacific Fleet except that
prescribed in Rainbow 5, that is the withdrawal of four cruisers about
one month after Japan and the United States are at war. The existing
force in the Pacific is all that can be spared for the tasks assigned
your fleet, and new construction will not make itself felt until next
The transfer of the Pacific Fleet units in May of 1941, it would appear,
had as its immediate objective the possibility of their engaging in an
expedition to take the Azores,  in order that these vital Portuguese
possessions might not fall into German hands. The occasion for taking
the Azores, however, did not materialize and, as stated by Admiral
Stark, "it just went on diplomatically there".  The fleet units,
formerly attached to the Pacific Fleet, were not returned to Pearl
Harbor but were employed further to augment the Atlantic Fleet,
particularly in the vicinity of Iceland.
The record reflects that the transfer of a portion of the Pacific Fleet
to the Atlantic in May of 1941 was in line with the basic war plans
which recognized the Atlantic as the principal theater of operations and
was designed to forestall the possibility of an indispensable strategic
area falling into German hands. The transfer was an inextricable part of
the over-all military policies prepared to meet the Axis threat. 
A great deal of inquiry was made during the course of proceedings to
determine whether the government of the United States had entered into
an agreement with Great Britain and the Netherlands committing this
Nation to war upon Japan in the event British or Dutch possessions were
attacked by the Japanese. [52a] It is clear from evidence before the
committee that no agreement was entered into in this regard. The
President and his Cabinet, while momentarily expecting an attack by
Japan, recognized and observed the constitutional mandate that this
government could only be committed to war by a declaration of the
Recognizing the inevitable Consequences of the Tripartite Pact,
representatives of the War and Navy Departments participated during 1941
in a series of staff conversations with military and naval experts
 Committee exhibit No. 106.
 In a letter to Admiral Kimmel of May 24, 1941, Admiral Stark
stated, among other things, "Day before yesterday afternoon the
President gave me an overall limit of 30 days to prepare and have ready
an expedition of 25,000 men to sail for, and to take the Azores. Whether
or not there would be opposition I do not know but we have to be fully
prepared for strenuous opposition. You can visualize the job
particularly when I tell you that the Azores recently have been greatly
reinforced. The Army, of course, will be in on this but the Navy and the
Marines will bear the brunt." Committee record, pp. 5607, 5608.
 Committee record, pp. 13977, 13978.
In the course of committee examination, Admiral Stark was asked: "How
would you attack and take the Azores without a declaration of war on
Portugal? She owned them."
He replied: "I can tell you one way. Suppose the Germans had taken
Portugal. Would we have to declare war on Portugal to take the Azores? I
don't think we would have. * * * I always construed that situation, with
regard to the Azores, as to have plans ready, and be ready if an
emergency arose there." Committee record. p. 13979.
 See Part I, pp. 10-13, supra, this report. It does not appear from
the evidence that additional Fleet units would have assisted in
detecting the approaching Japanese striking force, in view of the
dispositions made by the commander in chief of the Pacific Fleet, or
otherwise have materially aided in the defense against an air attack. As
previously suggested, had the major Fleet units transferred to the
Atlantic in May of 1941 been in Pearl Harbor on December 7 they, too,
would in all probability have been destroyed. See in the latter
connection, Part II, pp. 69 72, this report.
 This inquiry appears to have been largely precipitated by a remark
attributed to Prime Minister Churchill during an address before the
House of Commons on January 27, 1942. He is quoted as having stated "On
the other hand, the probability, since the Atlantic Conference at which
I discussed these matters with President Roosevelt, that the United
States, even if not herself attacked, would come into the war in the Far
East and thus make the final victory sure, seems to allay some of these
anxieties, and that expectations had not been falsified by the events."
See Committee record, p. 1286.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 169
of Great Britain, Canada, and the Netherlands.  The first of these
meetings, initiated by the Chief of Naval Operations  and limited to
American and British representatives, was held in Washington from
January 29 to March 27, 1941. The official report of the conversations,
referred to as "ABC-1," points out specifically that the discussions
were held with a view "to determine the best methods by which the armed
forces of the United States and British Commonwealth, with its present
allies, could defeat Germany and the powers allied with her, *should the
United States be compelled to resort to war*."  The report states
clearly that the plans to accomplish this purpose, as embodied in the
report, were subject to confirmation by the highest military authorities
in the United States and Great Britain and by the governments of both
countries as well.  This was in accord with the joint statement of
the position the American representatives would take, made by the Chief
of Naval Operations and the Chief of Staff on January 27 at the outset
of the conversations. 
"ABC-1" was approved by the Chief of Naval Operations and the Secretary
of the Navy and by the Chief of Staff and the Secretary of War, 
thereafter being submitted to the President on June 2, 1941. On June 7
the President returned "ABC-1" without formal approval; pointing out
that since the plan had not been finally approved by the British
Government, he would not approve it at that time but that in case of war
the report should be returned to him for approval. 
Shortly after the staff conversations in Washington military and naval
representatives of the United States, Great Britain, and the Netherlands
conferred in April of 1941 at Singapore in order to draft a plan for the
conduct of operations in the Far East based on "ABC-1." In the
instructions sent the commander in chief of our Asiatic Fleet  prior
to the Singapore conversations it was emphatically pointed out that the
results of such conversations were likewise subject to ratification by
the governments concerned and were to involve no political commitment by
the United States.  The report of the conversations,  referred
to as "ADB", explicitly recognized that no political commitments were
implied.  Nevertheless, the Chief of Naval Operations and the Chief
of Staff withheld their approval feeling that
 Admiral Stark said: "In our planning, we assumed that if the United
States was drawn into war, it would be alined with Great Britain and
against the Axis Powers. We also knew that while our most immediate
concern was with the war then in progress in the Atlantic and in Europe,
we might also be faced-perhaps concurrently-with a war in the Pacific.
With these thoughts in mind, we held extensive staff conversations with
the British and Canadians early in 1941 and the report of these
conversations was embodied in a document known as ABC-1, dated March 27,
1941." Committee record, p 5572.
 Admiral Stark was asked; "* * * it was in 1940, the fall of 1940
that you communicated with Admiral Sir Dudley Pound of the British Navy,
requesting that he send his naval experts to the United States to
discuss collaboration between the two navies?"
Admiral STARK: "That is correct, in case of war."
Question: "Upon whose responsibility was that message sent?"
Admiral STARK: "My own."
Question: "Did you discuss the subject with the President?"
Admiral STARK; "I sent that on my own, and I did not notify the
President until later I had done it."
 See committee exhibit No. 49 for a full report of the staff
 Committee exhibit No. 49.
 See committee record, p. 2617.
 Id., at pp. 2619, 2620.
 Id,, at p. 6320.
 Id., at p. 5123.
 For the report of the Singapore conversations, see committee
exhibit No. 50.
 In testifying concerning the Singapore conversations, Admiral
Turner said: "In none of these papers was there ever a political
commitment, or a definite military commitment. This was a plan of
action, or these were plans of action based on assumptions that should
the United States enter the war, then these papers would be effective,
provided they were approved by the proper authorities. "None of the ADB
papers were ever presented to either the Secretary of the Navy or the
Secretary of War or the President, although all of those officers as
well as the Secretary of State were aware that these conversations were
being held from time to time." Committee record. p. 5122.
170 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
some of the statements in the report had political implications. 
One of the proposals of the Singapore conference, however, was
subsequently incorporated *as a recommendation* in the joint memoranda
of November 5 and 27 which the Chief of Staff and the Chief of Naval
Operations submitted to the President; i. e., that military
counteraction should be undertaken in the event Japan attacked or
directly. threatened the territory or mandated territory of the United
States, the British Commonwealth, or the Netherlands East Indies, or if
the Japanese moved forces into Thailand west of 100 east or south of
10 north, Portuguese Timor, New Caledonia, or the Loyalty Islands. 
As elsewhere pointed out, it was mutually understood at the Atlantic
Conference in August of 1941 by President Roosevelt and Prime Minister
Churchill that the Governments of both the United States and Great
Britain needed more time to prepare for resistance against possible
Japanese attack in the Far East.  It was agreed, however, that steps
should be taken to make clear to Japan that further aggressive action by
her against neighboring countries would result in each country being
compelled to take all necessary measures to safeguard the legitimate
rights of its country and nationals and to insure its country's safety
and security.  Accordingly, upon returning to Washington the
President on August 17, 1941 informed the Japanese Ambassador that if
the Japanese Government took any further steps in line with a program of
military domination by force or threat of force of neighboring
countries, the Government of the United States would be compelled to
take any and all steps necessary toward safeguarding its legitimate
rights and interests and toward insuring the security of the United
During the latter half of 1941 negotiations to meet the American
objections to the "ADB" report proceeded slowly until discussions were
opened in the Far East in November between Admiral Hart, commander in
chief of our Asiatic Fleet, and Admiral Phillips, the British Far
Eastern naval commander. Soon after the out-break of war, the two
commanders completed arrangements for initial American and British naval
dispositions to meet probable Japanese action in the Far East. Admiral
Hart's report of his conversations with Admiral Phillips was received in
the Navy Department about 11 p. m., December 6, 1941, and was approved
in a dispatch sent out by the Chief of Naval Operations on December 7
after the attack on Pearl Harbor. 
On December 6, 1941, Admiral Hart cabled the Chief of Naval Operations
concerning a report received from Singapore that the United States had
"assured British armed support under three or four eventualities". 
None of the witnesses who were questioned on this
 See committee exhibit No. 65. Also testimony Of Admiral Turner,
committee record, pp. 5118, 6119.
 See section, infra, Avoidance of War.
 See Part I, this report.
 See testimony of Admiral Stark before the joint committee.
 Admiral Hart's dispatch was based on a communication which he had
received on December 6, l941, from Capt. John M, Creighton, who was a
naval attache in Singapore, as follows: "Brooke Popham received
Saturday from War Department London Quote We have now received assurance
of American armed support in cases as follows: Affirm we are obliged
execute our plans to forestall Japs landing Isthmus of Kra or take
action in reply to Nips invasion any other part of Siam; Baker if Dutch
Indies are attacked and we go to their defense; Cast if Japs attack us
the British. Therefore without reference to London put plan in action if
first you have good info Jap expedition advancing with the apparent
intention of landing in Kra, second if the Nips violate any part of
Thailand Para if NEI are attacked put into operation plans agreed upon
between British and Dutch. Unquote." Committee record, pp. 13520,13521.
In the course of his testimony before the committee Captain Creighton
stated he had no knowledge of an agreement between the United States and
Great Britain or the Dutch and that the report transmitted to Admiral
Hart must have come to him second-hand. Committee record, pp. 13516-
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 171
point, including Admiral Hart,  was aware of any evidence to
substantiate the report. In his testimony, the Chief of Naval Operations
suggested that the report may have been based on a misconception as to
the state of negotiations following the Singapore conference.  There
is no evidence to indicate that Japanese knowledge of the "ABC" and
"ADB" conversations was an inducing factor to Japan's decision to attack
the United States coincident with her thrust to the south. Indeed, the
idea of attacking us at Pearl Harbor was conceived before these
conversations were initiated.  Manifestly any estimate which the
Japanese made of American probable action was based on this country's
long-standing Far Eastern policy and the course of diplomatic
negotiations, and not on nonpolitical, technical discussions on a staff
It should be noted that on November 7 the President took an informal
vote of his Cabinet as to whether it was thought the American people
would support a strike against Japan in the event she should attack
England in Malaya or the Dutch in the East Indies. The cabinet was
unanimous in the feeling that the country would support such a move. The
following significant statement appears in the diary of Secretary
Stimson for December 2:
"The President is still deliberating the possibility of a message to the
Emperor although all the rest of us are rather against it, but in
addition to that he is quite settled, I think, that he will make a
Message to the Congress and will perhaps back that up with a speech to
the country. "
From all of the evidence, as earlier indicated, there is no basis for
the conclusion that an agreement had been effected committing he United
States to war against Japan in the event of an attack by her upon the
British or the Dutch. It is indisputable that the President and his
Cabinet contemplated presenting the problem to the Congress should our
position in the Far East become intolerable.  Further, the reports
of the 1941 staff conversations contain clear disclaimers of any
political commitments and the voluminous records relating to these
conversations will be searched in vain for any suggestion that an
agreement binding the United States to go to war was made. Additionally,
all the witnesses who were questioned on the point -including the
ranking military and naval leaders of he country at the time-testified
that *in these meetings the constitutional prerogative of the Congress
to declare war was scrupulously re-
 Committee record, pp. 12785-12875.
 Id., at p. 6317.
 See Part II, this report re Japanese plans for the attack.
 Before the committee, General Marshall was asked: "Let us assume
first that they (the Japanese) knew that we were going to go to war if
they attacked Malaya or any portion of that land there. Let us assume on
the other hand that they knew we were not going to participate unless we
were directly attacked ourselves. To what extent would their decisions
as to action be affected by that knowledge?"
He replied: "Japanese Psychology being what it is and the Japanese Army
domination being what it was their general scheme for the assumption of
power throughout the Far East, particularly the Southwest Pacific being
known now, I don't think that would have had any particular effect one
way or the other." Committee record, p. 13786.
 See statement of Mr. Stimson. Committee record, p. 14427.
 Admiral Stark said: "Under our Constitution the Congress had to
declare war, and we could not take any independent action, so far as
hostilities were concerned." Committee record, p. 13875.
Again, " * * * as to our striking after declaration of war on our part,
if the situation became intolerable us, and our national safety, if the
Japs had not struck and we thought then that our safety was imperiled we
did not fight, I think it would have been done in a constitutional
manner." Committee record, pp. 13892-12893.
Further, " * * * I do again make the statement, and I want it clear on
the record, so far as my thoughts were concerned, that if Japan had not
attacked and if conditions had become intolerable to our national safety
because of what she was doing, and that would have been through the
Congress." Committee record, p. 13895.
 See testimony of Secretary Hull, Sumner Welles, General Marshall,
Admiral Stark, Admiral Turner, Admiral Ingersoll, General Gerow before
172 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
spected.  The preliminary planning done at these conferences
manifested commendable foresight and indeed our military leaders would
have been inexcusably negligent had they not participated in these
conversations in the face of the clear pattern of conquest mapped out by
the Axis.  This planning saved precious time and lives once Japan
While no binding agreement existed, it would appear from the record that
the Japanese were inclined to the belief that the United States Britain
and the Netherlands would act in concert. An intercepted November 30
dispatch from Tokyo to Berlin stated in pertinent part: 
"* * * it is clear that the United States is now in collusion with those
nations (England, Australia, the Netherlands, and China) and has decided
to regard Japan, along with Germany and Italy, as an enemy."
A message of December 3 which was intercepted from the Washington
Embassy to Tokyo related: 
"Judging from all indications, we feel that some joint military action
between Great Britain and the United States, with or without a
declaration of war is a definite certainty, in the event of an
occupation of Thailand."
There is nothing, however, in the foregoing intelligence having any
relationship to the Hawaiian situation;-to have advised the commanders
there that the Japanese regarded an attack upon the British or Dutch as
tantamount to an attack upon the United States would have added nothing-
they had already been categorically warned that hostile action by Japan
against the United States itself was possible at any moment.
AVOIDANCE OF WAR
As has been seen in considering the diplomatic background of the Pearl
Harbor attack, every effort was made compatible with national honor to
forestall the inevitable conflict with Japan. The policy of the United
States *condemned aggression*; the policy of Japan was *predicated on
aggression*. It was only a question of time, therefore, before these two
irreconcilable principles would engender war.  Officials of our
Government were faced with the problem of effecting a delicate balance
between gaining time to improve our military preparedness on the one
hand and not forsaking our principles, national honor, and Allies on the
 That the certain prerogative of the Congress to declare war was
recognized in discussions with other governments is revealed by the
following dispatch from Ambassador Winant to the State Department dated
November 30, 1941, transmitting a message from Prime Minister Churchill
to President Roosevelt:
"It seems to me that one important method remains unused in averting war
between Japan and our two countries, namely a plain declaration, secret
or public as may be thought best, that any further act of aggression by
Japan will lead immediately to the gravest consequences. *I realize your
constitutional difficulties* but it would be tragic if Japan drifted
into war by encroachment without having before her fairly and squarely
the dire character of a further aggressive step. I beg you to consider
whether, at the moment which you judge right which may be very near you
should not *say that 'any further Japanese aggression would compel you
to place the gravest issues before Congress*' or words to that effect.
We would, of course, make a similar declaration or share in a joint
declaration, and in any case arrangements are being made to synchronize
our action with yours. Forgive me, my dear friend, for presuming to
press such a course upon you, but I am convinced that it might make all
the difference and prevent a melancholy extension of the war." Committee
exhibit No. 24. See also testimony of General Marshall, committee
record, pp. 2785 2786.
 In the course of counsel's examination, General Gerow was asked: "*
* * has it been the practice of the War Plans Division from time
immemorial to make all sorts of plans about war operations on the
contingency that some day or other we might be involved in hostilities
with other nations?"
He replied: "Oh, yes, sir. We had at all times kept current plans for
operations against any major power or combination of major powers, sir *
* * at one time I think we had plans against almost everybody sir, and I
think that is the practice of every general staff of every nation."
Committee record pp. 2673, 2674.
As stated by Admiral Stark, "It is our business to draw up plans for any
contingency." Committee record, p, 13977.
 Committee exhibit No. 1 p. 205.
 Id., at p. 227. For a full treatment of the matter, however,
indicating that no agreement whatsoever existed for military action on
our part in the event of a Japanese invasion of Thailand, see committee
exhibit No. 169.
 See Part I, supra, this report.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 173
In summing up the salient features of the situation as they appeared o
him in November of 1941, Mr. Stimson said: 
"1. War with Germany and Japan would ultimately be inevitable.
"2. It was vitally important that none of the nations who were then
desperately fighting Germany-England, Russia, or China-should be knocked
out of the war before the time came when we would be required to go in.
"3. While we very much wanted more time in which to prepare,
nevertheless we felt we had a fair chance to make an effective fight
against Japan for the Philippines even if we had to enter the war at
that time, in view of the air power that we were building up in the
"4. If war did come, it was important, both from the point of view of
unified support of our own people as well as for the record of history,
that we should not be placed in the position of firing the first shot,
if this could be done without sacrificing our safety, but Japan should
appear in her true role as the real aggressor."
It should be noted that in October of 1940 the President advised Admiral
Richardson that if the Japanese attacked Thailand, or the Kra Peninsula,
or the Dutch East Indies the United States would not enter the war-
"that if they even attacked the Philippines he doubted whether we would
enter the war, but that they (the Japanese) could not always avoid
making mistakes and that as the war continued and the area of operations
expanded sooner or later they would make a mistake and we would enter
the war. "
On October 30, 1941, a message was received from Generalissimo Chiang
Kai-shek indicating his belief that a Japanese attack on Kunming
(Yunnan), located on the Burma Road, was imminent, and that military
support from outside sources, particularly by the use of United States
and British air units, was the sole hope for defeat of this threat. 
The Secretary of State requested the advice of the Chief of Staff and
the Chief of Naval Operations as to the attitude which this Government
should assume toward a Japanese offensive against Kunming and the Burma
Road. In a joint memorandum for the President dated November 5 they set
forth the following conclusions and recommendations, after reviewing the
situation in China: 
"The Chief of Naval Operations and the Chief of Staff are in accord in
the following conclusions:
"(a) The basic military policies and strategy agreed to in the United
States-British Staff conversations remain sound. The primary objective
of the two nations is the defeat of Germany. If Japan be defeated and
Germany remain undefeated, decision will still have not been reached. In
any case, an unlimited offensive war should not be undertaken against
Japan, since such a war would greatly weaken the combined effort in the
Atlantic against Germany, the most dangerous enemy.
"(b) War between the United States and Japan should be avoided while
building up defensive forces in the Far East, until such time as Japan
attacks or directly threatens territories whose security to the United
States is of very great importance. Military action against Japan should
be undertaken only in one or more of the following contingencies:
"(1) *A direct act of war by Japanese armed forces against the territory
or mandated territory of the United States, the British Commonwealth, or
the Netherlands East Indies*;
"(2) *The movement of Japanese forces into Thailand to the west of 100
degrees East or south of 10 degrees North; or into Portuguese Timor, New
Caledonia, or the loyalty Islands*.
"(c) If war with Japan cannot be avoided, it should follow the strategic
lines of existing war plans; i. e., military operations should be
primarily defensive, with the object of holding territory, and weakening
Japan's economic position.
 See statement of Mr. Stimson, committee record, p. 14385.
 Testimony of Admiral Richardson, committee record, pp. 683, 684.
 See committee exhibit No. 16A. Similar messages were received
through the American ambassador in Chungking, the Magruder Mission and
the United States naval attache. Exhibits Nos. 16, 16A.
 Committee exhibit No. 16.
174 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
"(d) Considering world strategy, a Japanese advance against Kunming,
into Thailand except as previously indicated, or an attack on Russia,
would not justify intervention by the United States against Japan.
"(e) All possible aid short of actual war against Japan should be
extended to the Chinese Central Government.
"(f) In case it is decided to undertake war against Japan, complete
coordinated action in the diplomatic, economic, and military fields,
should be undertaken in common by the United States, the British
Commonwealth, and the Netherlands East Indies.
"The Chief of Naval Operations and the Chief of Staff recommend that the
United States policy in the Far East be based on the above conclusions.
"Specifically, they recommend:
"That the dispatch of United States armed forces for intervention
against Japan in China be disapproved.
"That material aid to China be accelerated consonant with the needs of
Russia, Great Britain, and our own forces.
"That aid to the American Volunteer Group be continued and accelerated
to the maximum practicable extent.
"That no ultimatum be delivered to Japan."
The reply of the President to Chiang Kai-shek's message was handed to
the Chinese Ambassador on November 14 and followed the recommendations
of General Marshall and Admiral Stark. It pointed out that it did not
appear preparations by Japan for a land campaign against Kunming had
advanced to a point which would indicate probable immediate imminence of
an attack and observed, among other things: 
" * * * Under existing circumstances, taking into consideration the
world situation in its political, military, and economic aspects, we
feel that the most effective contribution which we can make at this
moment is along the line of speeding up the flow to China of our lend-
lease materials and facilitating the building up of the American
volunteer air force, both in personnel and in equipment. We are
subjected at present, as you know, to demands from many quarters and in
many connections. We are sending materials not only to China and Great
Britain, but to the Dutch, the Soviet Union, and some twenty other
countries that are calling urgently for equipment for self-defense. In
addition. Our program for our own defense, especially the needs of our
rapidly expanding Navy and Army, calls for equipment in large amount and
with great promptness. Nevertheless, I shall do my utmost toward
achieving expedition of increasing amounts of material for your use.
Meanwhile we are exchanging views with the British Government in regard
to the entire situation and the tremendous problems which are presented,
with a view to effective coordinating of efforts in the most practicable
In a joint memorandum for the President, prepared under date of November
27, 1941, General Marshall and Admiral Stark pointed out that "if the
current negotiations end without agreement, Japan may attack: the Burma
Road; Thailand; Malaya; the Netherlands East Indies; the Philippines;
the Russian Maritime Provinces."  They observed that:
"*The most essential thing now, from the United States viewpoint, is to
gain time*. Considerable Navy and Army reinforcements have been rushed
to the Philippines but the desirable strength has not yet been reached.
The process of reinforcement is being continued. Of great and immediate
concern is the safety of the Army convoy now near Guam, and the Marine
Corps' convoy just leaving Shanghai. Ground forces to a total of 21,000
are due to sail from the United States by December 8, 1941, and it is
important that this troop reinforcement reach the Philippines before
hostilities commence. *Precipitance of military action on our part
should be avoided so long as consistent with national policy*. The
longer the delay, the more positive becomes the assurance of retention
of these islands as a naval and air base.
 Committee exhibit No. 17.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 175
Japanese action to the south of Formosa will be hindered and perhaps
seriously blocked as long as we hold the Philippine Islands. War with
Japan certainly will interrupt our transport of supplies to Siberia, and
probably will interrupt the process of aiding China.
"After consultation with each other, United States, British, and Dutch
military authorities in the Far East agreed that joint military
counteraction against Japan should be undertaken *only in case Japan
attacks or directly threatens the territory mandated territory of the
United States, the British Commonwealth, or the Netherlands East Indies,
or should the Japanese move forces into Thailand west of 100 degrees
East or south of 10 degrees North, Portuguese Timor, Nets Caledonia, or
the Loyalty Islands* 
"Japanese involvement in Yunnan or Thailand up to a certain extent is
advantageous, since it leads to further dispersion, longer lines of
communication, and an additional burden on communications. However, a
Japanese advance to the west of 100 degrees East or south of 10 degrees
North, immediately becomes a threat to Burma and Singapore. Until it is
patent that Japan intends to advance beyond these lines, no action which
might lead to immediate hostilities should be taken.
"It is recommended that:
"Prior to the completion of the Philippine reinforcement, military
counteraction be considered only if Japan attacks or directly threatens
United States, British, or Dutch territory, as above outlined;
"In case of a Japanese advance into Thailand, Japan be warned by the
United States, the British, and the Dutch Governments that advance
beyond the lines indicated may lead to war, prior to such warning no
joint military opposition be undertaken;
"Steps be taken at once to consummate agreements with the British and
Dutch for the issuance of such warning. "
It is to be noted that the foregoing memorandum was dated November 27,
1941, the day after the Secretary of State had delivered our
Government's reply to the Japanese ultimatum of November 20. The
evidence shows, however, that the memorandum was considered at an Army-
Navy Joint Board meeting on the morning of November 26, following the
meeting of the War Council on the preceding day at which Secretary Hull
had stated that there was practically no possibility of an agreement
being achieved with Japan.  The memorandum of the Chief of Staff and
the Chief of Naval Operations conveys two cardinal thoughts governing
the approach of the military to the negotiations; i. e., *the most
essential thing was to gain time, and the precipitance of military
action should be avoided so long as consistent with national policy*. In
this connection General Marshall referred to the reaction of the Army
and Navy to the dropping of the thought of a modus vivendi in the
following terms: 
"My recollection is, and I have a fairly clear recollection of our
disappointment that from the military point of view, meaning Army and
Navy, that we would not gain any more time; our relationship to these
discussions was on the one side the desire to gain as much time as we
possibly could and on the other to see that commitments were not made
that endangered us from a military point of view."
 General Marshall testified that this paragraph referred to the
conference of military leaders held in Singapore in April of 1941. He
was asked: "When you say that the Dutch, British, and the United States
military authorities had *agreed* to that action did you mean that they
had made an agreement on behalf of the United States, or agreed to
recommend it to their governments?"
General Marshall replied: "*Agreed to recommend it*. They had no power
whatever to agree for our government and it was so stipulated * * *."
Committee record, pp. 2784, 2785.
 See note 78, supra, and note 111, infra.
 With reference to the Marshall-Stark memorandum for the President
dated November 27, 1941 (exhibit No. 17), Admiral Ingersoll recalled
that he "* * * presented at a Joint Board Meeting on apparently the day
before this memorandum was sent, I presented at that meeting the
arguments why we should not precipitate a war, and when I came back here
to Washington 4 years later, I had forgotten completely that I had ever
presented such a memorandum at the Joint Board Meeting. The only
satisfaction I had was that it didn't sound silly after 4 years. And
this was based on that." Committee record, p. 11366.
 Committee record, p. 13775.
176 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
In pointing out the distinction between his approach and that of
Secretary Stimson,  General Marshall said: 
"He [Secretary Stimson] was very much afraid-he feared that we would
find ourselves involved in the developing situation where our
disadvantages would be so great that it would be quite fatal to us when
the Japanese actually broke peace.
"He also felt very keenly that, and thought about this part a great deal
more than I did, because it was his particular phase of the matter, that
we must not go so far in delaying actions of a diplomatic nature as to
sacrifice the honor of the country. He was deeply concerned about that.
"My approach to the matter, of course, was much more materialistic. I
was hunting for time. Hunting for time, so that whatever did happen we
would be better prepared than we were at that time, that particular
"So it was a question of resolving his views as to the honor, we will
say, of the United States, and his views of a diplomatic procedure which
allowed the Japanese to continue movements until we would be in a
hopeless situation before the peace was broken, and mine, which as I
say, were much more materialistic, as I think they should have been,
that we should get as much time as we could in order to make good the
terrible deficiencies in our defensive arrangements."
It is apparent from the memorandum of November 27 that the Chief of
Staff and the Chief of Naval Operations desired more time insofar as
consistent with national policy and not at the expense of forsaking the
honor of the Nation. As General Marshall testified: 
"Mine was, in a sense, a technical job. I was struggling with the means
to fight. * * * *I wanted time, and the question was how much time could
be given to us and still maintain the honor of the United States and not
get ourselves in a hopeless position.*"
Further, the memorandum relates to the matter of precipitance of war by
the United States; that is, no affirmative steps should be taken by the
United States to bring about war with Japan-"precipitance of military
action on our part should be avoided so long as consistent with national
As observed in reviewing the diplomatic background of the Pearl Harbor
attack, the November 26 note of our Government to Japan was not a
precipitant of war-it was merely a laudable restatement of the
principles for which we had stood for many years in the Orient. There
can, therefore, be no question that the delivery to Japan of the
American note of November 26 was not in any way in contravention of the
expressed position of our own military. Furthermore, Tokyo advised her
emissaries in Washington on November 20 that a modus vivendi would not
be acceptable to Japan,  and in consequence had our Government
submitted a modus vivendi to the Japanese, no more time would have been
afforded the Army and Navy. General Marshall and Admiral Stark had
themselves recommended that we take military counter-action should Japan
attack the very territory which she was already poised to attack in the
event she failed to secure the demands contained in the Japanese
ultimatum of November 20*. 
Indeed, at the very time Japan's ambassadors were discussing a temporary
truce, her military was continuing its move to the South. Secretary
Stimson's diary for November 26, 1941, reflects the following comments,
among others: 
 In this diary for November 27, Mr. Stimson commented: "Knox and
Admiral Stark came over and conferred with me and General Gerow.
Marshall is down at the maneuvers today and I feel his absence very
much. There was a tendency, not unnatural, on the part of Stark and
Gerow to seek for more time. I said that I was glad to have time but I
didn't want it at any cost of humility on the part of the United States
or of reopening the thing which would show a weakness on our part."
Committee record p. 14422.
 Committee record, p. 13821.
 Id., at p. 13822.
 Committee exhibit No. 1, p. 160.
 Id., No. 17.
 Committee record, p. 14420
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 177
". . . . I talked to the President over the telephone and I asked him
whether he had received the paper which I had sent him over last night
about the Japanese having started a new expedition from Shanghai down
towards Indo-China. He fairly blew up-jumped up into the air, so to
speak, and said he hadn't seen it and that that changed the whole
situation because it was an evidence of bad faith on the part of the
Japanese that while they were negotiating for an entire truce-an entire
withdrawal (from China)-they should be sending this expedition down
there to Indo-China. I told him that it was a fact that had come to me
through G-2 and through the Navy Secret Service and I at once got
another copy of the paper I had sent last night and sent it over to him
by special messenger."
It is to be noted that Mr. Stimson's diary for November 25, 1941,
describes a meeting at the White House attended by the President;
Secretaries Hull, Knox, and Stimson; General Marshall; and Admiral
Stark. It states, in part:  "There the President, instead of
bringing up the Victory Parade  brought up entirely the relations
with the Japanese. He brought up the event that we were likely to be
attacked (as soon as) next Monday without warning, and the question was
what we should do. *The question was how we should maneuver them into
the position of firing the first shot without allowing too much danger
to ourselves. It was a difficult proposition*." 
In referring to Mr. Stimson's comment concerning maneuvering the
Japanese into the position of firing the first shot without too much
danger to ourselves,  General Marshall testified: 
"* * * they were trying to arrange a diplomatic procedure, rather than
firing off a gun, that would not only protect our interests, by
arranging matters so that the Japanese couldn't intrude any further in a
dangerous way, but also anything they did do, they would be forced to
take the offensive action, and what we were to do had to be prepared for
the President by Mr. Hull. It was not a military order. It was not a
The Chief of Staff stated that Secretary Stimson was referring to what
the *diplomatic* procedure was to be; not the *military* procedure.
On November 28 Secretary Stimson called upon the President inasmuch as
Military Intelligence had supplied him a summary of the information in
regard to the movements of the Japanese in the Far East and "it amounted
to such a statement of dangerous possibilities that I decided to take it
to the President before he got up." Referring to his conversation with
the President on this occasion, Mr. Stimson wrote in his diary: 
"He (the President) branched into an analysis of the situation himself
as he sat there on his bed, saying there were three alternatives and
only three that he could see before us. I told him I could see two. His
 Id., at p. 14418.
 This was an office nickname for the General Staff strategic plan
of national action in case of war in Europe.
 Mr. Stimson pointed out in this connection that our military and
naval advisers had warned us that we could not safely allow the Japanese
to move against British Malaysia or the Dutch East Indies without
attempting to prevent it. Committee record, p. 14418.
 In the course of committee examination, Admiral Stark was asked:
"Now, I want to know why if you know, there was a distinction between
the Atlantic and the Pacific about the firing of the first shot."
He replied: "Germany had attacked and sunk one of our ships in June. She
had attacked three destroyers in the Atlantic, sinking one of them-I
think it was in October or November, along in there, between September
and October. And certainly the 1st of December she had attacked and
wounded badly one tanker, the Salinas, I believe it was, which got back
to the Canadian coast. The Congress of the United States had voted
billions for material to go to Britain. We considered it our job to get
that material through not simply to use this money for material and let
it be sunk without taking any action on it. There were certain waters
defined, and limits established, which, I believe, we called our waters.
The President's speech shows it very plainly, in which he stated, if the
Germans came within that area they would do so at their peril. They came
in and attacked us. As a result, we got together what we called the
hemispheric defense plans, which I have outlined previously and which
provided for shooting at any German combatant ships which came within
that area, and we did do it * * * I think that that situation is not
comparable to what was going on in the Pacific, where the Japs had not
attacked our ships, unless you go back to the Panay incident." Committee
record, pp. 13981, 13982.
 Committee record, p. 13801.
 Id., at p. 13799.
 Id., at p. 14423.
178 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
to do nothing; second, to make something in the nature of an ultimatum
again, stating a point beyond which we would fight; third, to fight at
once. I told him my only two were the last two, because I did not think
anyone would do nothing in this situation, and he agreed with me. I said
of the other two my choice was the latter one."
Mr. Stimson set forth the following observations concerning the War
Council meeting on November 28: 
"It was the consensus that the present move (by the Japanese)-that there
was an Expeditionary Force on the sea of about 25,000 Japanese troops
aimed for a landing some where completely changed the situation when we
last discussed whether or not we could address an ultimatum to Japan
about moving the troops which she already had on land in Indochina. It
was now the opinion of every one that if this expedition was allowed to
get around the southern point of Indochina and to go off and land in the
Gulf of Siam, either at Bangkok or further west, it would be a terrific
blow at all of the three Powers, Britain at Singapore the Netherlands,
and ourselves in the Philippines. *It was the consensus of everybody
that this must not be allowed*. Then we discussed how to prevent it. It
was agreed that if the Japanese got into the Isthmus of Kra, the British
would fight. It was also agreed that if the British fought, we would
have to fight. And it now seems clear that if this expedition was
allowed to round the southern point of Indochina, this whole chain of
disastrous events would be set on foot of going.
"It further became a consensus of views that rather than strike at the
force as it went by without any warning on the one hand, which we didn't
think we could do; or sitting still and allowing it to go on, on the
other, which we didn't think we could-that the only thing for us to do
was to address it a warning that if it reached a certain place, or a
certain line, or a certain point, we should have to fight. The
President's mind evidently was running towards a special telegram from
himself to the Emperor of Japan. This he had done with good results at
the time of the Panay incident, but for many reasons this did not seem
to me to be the right thing now and I pointed them out to the President.
In the first place, a letter to the Emperor of Japan could not be
couched in terms which contained an explicit warning. One does not warn
an Emperor. In the second place it would not indicate to the people of
the United States what the real nature of the danger was. Consequently I
said there ought to be a message by the President to the people of the
United States and I thought that the best form of a message would be an
address to Congress reporting the danger, reporting what we would have
to do if the danger happened. The President accepted this idea of a
message but he first thought of incorporating in it the terms of his
letter to the Emperor. But again I pointed out that he could not
publicize a letter to an Emperor in such a way; that he had better send
his letter to the Emperor separate as one thing and a secret thing, and
then make his speech to the Congress as a separate and a more
understandable thing to the people of the United States. This was the
final decision at that time and the President asked Hull, and Knox and
myself to try to draft such papers."
Mr. Stimson's diary for December 2, 1941, contains the following
comments concerning a meeting at the White House: 
"The President went step by step over the situation and I think has made
up his mind to go ahead. He has asked the Japanese through Sumner Welles
what they intend by this new occupation of southern Indo-China-just what
they are going to do-and has demanded a quick reply. The President is
still deliberating the possibility of a message to the Emperor, although
all the rest of us are rather against it, but in addition to that *he is
quite settled, I think, that he will make a Message to the Congress and
will perhaps back that up with a speech to the country. He said that he
was going to take the matters right up when he left us*."
On December 6 President Roosevelt dispatched his appeal to the Emperor;
and, after the bombs had already fallen on Hawaii, our Ambassador in
Tokyo was informed that it was desired the Japanese Memorandum of
December 7, which was keyed for delivery to the United States coincident
with the attack on Pearl Harbor, be regarded as the Emperor's reply to
the President. 
 Id., at pp. 14424, 14425.
 Id., at p. 14427.
 See Part I, supra, this report.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 179
It is clear from the evidence that the feeling of the President and his
advisers that the United States must fight if the British and Dutch ere
attacked was predicated on the necessities of our own security and not
occasioned by reason of any formal commitment or agreement requiring
such action on the part of the United States.  That our Government
was hoping to avoid war long after any real hope existed  made
manifest by the fact that the President contemplated sending warning to
Japan on "Tuesday afternoon or evening" (December 9) if no answer was
received from the Emperor by Monday (December 8.)  In referring to
the appeal to the Emperor, Mr. Hull said: 
"The President was now making an additional last-minute appeal. He, of
course knew that the huge Japanese armada had already left the jumping-
off place in Indochina which from our viewpoint meant that the danger of
attack could not have been more imminent. Nevertheless, *the President
believed that he should not neglect even the slim chance that an
additional last-minute appeal might save the situation. It also served
to make clear to the American people and to the world our interest in
maintaining peace up to the very last minute*."
INTELLIGENCE AVAILABLE IN WASHINGTON
With the exercise of the greatest ingenuity and utmost resourcefulness,
regarded by the committee as meriting the highest commendation, the War
and Navy Departments collaborated in breaking the Japanese diplomatic
codes. Through the exploitation of intercepted and decoded messages
between Japan and her diplomatic establishments, the so-called Magic, a
wealth of intelligence concerning the purposes of the Japanese was
available in Washington. 
Both the Army and Navy maintained several stations throughout the United
States and in the Pacific for the purpose of intercepting Japanese radio
communications. These stations operated under instructions mandating
from Washington and forwarded the intercepted traffic to Washington
without themselves endeavoring to decode or translate the material. The
only exception to this procedure was in the case of the Corregidor
station which had been provided with facilities for exploiting many of
the Japanese diplomatic messages in view of its advantageous location
from the standpoint of intercepting Tokyo traffic. 
Insofar as the commanding officers in Hawaii were concerned they
received none of the Magic save as it was supplied them by the War and
Navy Departments in the original, paraphrased, or captioned form or,
operationally, through instructions predicated on this source of
intelligence. While the highest military officials in Washington did not
know the precise nature of radio intelligence activities in Hawaii, it
is clear that those charged with handling the Magic did not
 See statement of Mr. Stimson, committee record, p. 14418. Also
committee exhibits Nos. 16,17.
 Admiral Stark was asked: "Was not that our intention (of doing
anything possible to prevent war with the Japanese) right up to December
7, if it could be done without sacrificing American honor and
He replied: "Yes, sir, and we had been working for months on that, and
the record is complete in that regard." Committee record, p. 13915.
 See committee record, pp. 13741, 13742.
 See Secretary Hull's replies to committee interrogatories.
Committee record, p. 14266.
 See committee exhibits Nos. I and 2. For a discussion of Magic and
its great significance to the prosecution of the war see letters dated
September 25 and 27, 1944, from General Marshall to Governor Dewey.
Committee record pp. 2979-2989.
 For a discussion of the mechanics of the Magic see testimony of
Admiral Noyes and Capts. L. F Safford and A. D. Kramer of the Navy, and
Cols. Otis K. Sadtler and Rufus Bratton of the Army; before the
180 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
rely upon either the Army or Navy in Hawaii being able to decode the
diplomatic messages which were decoded in Washington. However both
Admirals Stark and Turner testified that they were under the impression
that Japanese diplomatic messages were being decode by the Navy in
Hawaii.  No justification for this impression existed in fact apart
from the failure of these officers to inform themselves adequately
concerning Navy establishments.  Under arrangements existing during
1941 between the Army and the Navy in Washington the decoding and
translating of Magic was divided between the Army Signal Intelligence
Service under the direction of the Chief Signal Officer and a unit in
the Navy, known as OP-20-G, under the control of the Director of Naval
Communications. The responsibility for decoding and translating messages
was allocated between the two services on the basis of the dates of the
messages with each service ordinarily handling all messages originated
on alternate days, the Army being responsible for even dates and the
Navy, for odd dates This procedure was flexible in that it was departed
from in order to expedite the handling of material as the occasion
demanded or in the case of any unusual situation that might prevail in
one or the other of the services.
POLICY WITH RESPECT TO DISSEMINATION OF MAGIC
The Magic intelligence was regarded as preeminently confidential and the
policy with respect to its restricted distribution was dictated by a
desire to safeguard the secret that the Japanese diplomatic codes were
being broken.  Delivery of the English texts of the intercepted
messages was limited, within the War Department, to the Secretary of
War, the Chief of Staff, the Chief of the War Plans Division, and the
Chief of the Military Intelligence Division; within the Navy, to the
Secretary of Navy, the Chief of Naval Operations, the Chief of the War
Plans Division, and the Director of Naval Intelligence; to the State
Department; and to the President's naval aide for transmittal to the
President. By agreement between the Army and Navy in Washington, the
Army was responsible for distribution of Magic within the War Department
and to the State Department; the Navy, for distribution within the Navy
Department and to the White House. Any disclosure of the fact that the
Japanese messages were being decoded or any disclosure of information
obtainable only from that source would inevitably have resulted in
Japan's changing her codes with attendant loss completely of the vital
Magic. This fact was responsible for the translated material being
closely held among a
 See committee record, p. 5095.
 Admiral Stark testified: "I inquired on two or three occasions as
to whether or not Kimmel could read certain dispatches when they came up
and which we were interpreting and sending our own messages and I was
told that he could. *However, I want to make it plain that that did not
influence me in the slightest regarding what I sent*. I felt it my
responsibility to keep the commanders in the field and to see to it that
they were kept informed of the main trends and of information which
(would) be of high interest to them. Regardless of what dispatches I
might have seen, they may have formed background for me but I saw that
affirmative action was taken from the Chief of Naval Operations to the
commanders in the field on matters which I thought they should have."
Committee record, p. 5793
 During the course of his testimony, General Miles was asked: "Who
made the decision that these messages should not be sent to Hawaii as
they were intercepted and translated as far as the Army is concerned?"
He replied: "That followed from the general policy laid down by the
Chief of Staff that these messages and the fact of the existence of
these messages or our ability to decode them should be confirmed to the
least possible number of persons; no distribution should be made outside
of Washington. * * *
"The value of that secret, the secret that we could and did decode
Japanese messages, in their best code, was of incalculable value to us,
both in the period when war threatened and most definitely during our
waging of that war. That was the basic reason for the limitation on the
distribution of those messages and of the constantly increasing closing
in, as I might express it, on any possible leaks in that secret."
Committee record, pp. 2092, 2093.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 181
few key individuals, in addition necessarily to those who processed the
The policy generally prevailed in the days before Pearl Harbor that the
Magic materials were not ordinarily to be disseminated to field
commanders.  This policy was prescribed for the reason that (1) the
Japanese might conceivably intercept the relayed Magic intelligence and
learn of our success in decrypting Japanese codes:  (2) the volume
of intercepted traffic was so great that its transmission, particularly
during the critical period of diplomatic negotiations, would have
overtaxed communication facilities; and (3) responsibility for
evaluation of this material which was largely diplomatic in nature was
properly in Washington, where the Magic could be considered along with
other pertinent diplomatic information obtained from the State
Department and other sources. There was no inflexible rule, however,
which precluded sending to theater commanders in proper instances,
either in its original form as paraphrased or in the form of estimates,
conclusions, or orders based wholly or in part upon Magic. Important
information derived therefrom was from time to time sent to the Hawaiian
commanders by the Navy Department in paraphrased form or in the form of
estimates.  The War Department, on the other and, did not send the
Magic to the field, for the reason that the Army code was not believed
to be as secure as that of the Navy. 
For purposes of the investigation Magic fell generally into two
categories: first, messages relating to diplomatic matters of the
Japanese Government;  and second, messages relating to espionage
activities by Japanese diplomatic representatives, particularly with
respect to American military installations and establishments. 
The decision not to endeavor to supply field commanders all of the Magic
intelligence as such was a reasonable one under the circumstances.
However, it is incumbent to determine whether responsible commanding
officers were otherwise supplied the equivalent of intelligence obtained
from the Magic materials.
"SHIPS IN HARBOR" REPORTS
NATURE OF CONSULAR ESPIONAGE
In addition to the Magic materials relating strictly to diplomatic
negotiations, a great many messages between Japan and her diplomatic
establishments were intercepted reflecting espionage activities by the
consular staffs.  These intercepts related in the main to
instructions sent by Tokyo and replies pursuant thereto concerning the
movement and location of American ships and the nature of military and
 For a discussion concerning this matter, see letter dated April
22, 1941, from Capt. Arthur N. McCollum in Washington to Capt. Edwin T.
Layton, Pacific Fleet intelligence officer. Committee record, pp. 12917-
 This factor applied principally to the Army. See testimony of
General Miles. Note 121, infra.
 See committee exhibit No. 37, pp. 4-12, 40, 41.
 In testifying concerning the matter of distributing Magic to field
commanders General Miles was asked; "Do I understand from your answer
that these messages intercepted and translated were not sent to Hawaii
by the Army?"
He replied: "They were not. In some cases the substance of some
messages were sent to Hawaii, and all most always in naval code, I think
always in naval code, because the naval code was considered to be more
secure than the Army code." Committee record, pp. 2091, 2092.
 Committee exhibit No. 1.
 Id., No. 2.
182 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
The Hawaiian commanders have strongly insisted that messages to and from
the Japanese Consulate in Honolulu clearly indicated Japan's intention
to attack the fleet at Pearl Harbor. They contend they were wrongfully
deprived of this information, basing this contention to a great extent
on an intercepted dispatch from Tokyo of September 24, 1941 
issuing the following instructions to its Honolulu Consulate: 
"Henceforth, we would like to have you make reports concerning vessels
along the following lines insofar as possible:
"1. The waters (of Pearl Harbor) are to be divided roughly into five
subareas (We have no objections to your abbreviating as much as you
"Area A. Waters between Ford Island and the Arsenal.
"Area B. Waters adjacent to the Island south and west of Ford Island.
(This area is on the opposite side of the Island from Area A.)
"Area C. East Loch.
"Area D. Middle Loch.
"Area E. West Loch and the communication water routes.
"2. With regard to warships and aircraft carriers, we would like to have
you report on those at anchor (these are not so important) tied up at
wharves, buoys and in docks. (Designate types and classes briefly. If
possible we would like to have you make mention of the fact when there
are two or more vessels along side the same wharf.) "
The foregoing message, No. 83, has been gratuitously characterized
throughout the proceedings as the "bomb plot message", the "harbor
berthing plan", and by similar terms. Three other intercepted messages
relate in a pertinent manner to the September 24 dispatch and to Tokyo's
interest in the fleet at Pearl Harbor:
(1) In a message from Tokyo to the Honolulu Consul, dated November 15,
1941 (translated December 3, 1941) it was stated: 
"As relations between Japan and the United States are most critical make
your "ships in harbor report" irregular, but at a rate of twice a week.
Although you already are no doubt aware, please take extra care to
(2) An intercept from Tokyo dated November 20, 1941 (translated December
4) read: 
"Please investigate comprehensively the fleet-bases in the neighborhood
of the Hawaiian military reservation."
(3) An intercept of November 29 (translated December 5) stated: 
"We have been receiving reports from you on ship movements, but in
future will you also report even when there are no movements?"
Referring to the indicated messages, Admiral Kimmel testified: 
"In no other area was the Japanese Government seeking information as to
whether two or more vessels were alongside the same wharf. Prior to the
dispatch of September 24, the information which the Japanese sought and
obtained about Pearl Harbor followed the general pattern of their
interest in American Fleet movements in other localities. One might
suspect this type of conventional espionage. With the dispatch of
September 24, 1941, and those which followed there was a significant and
ominous change in the character of the information
 Translated October 9.
 Committee exhibit No. 2, p. 12.
 Some of the subsequent reports from the Japanese Consulate in
Honolulu were made pursuant to the instructions contained in the
September 24 dispatch from Tokyo. See committee exhibit No. 2 pp. 13 and
 Committee exhibit No. 2, p. 13.
 Id., at p. 15.
Captain Kramer testified with respect to the blank, a garble, in this
message between the words "fleet" and "bases" that he believed the
original Japanese version in ungarbled form if it were available would
read: "Please investigate comprehensively the fleet air bases."
Committee record, pp. 1162-1163
 Committee exhibit No. 2, 15 p.
 Committee record, pp. 6779, 6780.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK l83
which the Japanese Government sought and obtained. The espionage then
directed was of an unusual character and outside the realm of reasonable
suspicion. It was no longer merely directed to ascertaining the general
whereabouts of ships of the fleet. It was directed to the presence of
particular ships in particular areas; to such minute detail as what
ships were double-docked at the same wharf. In the period immediately
preceding the attack, the Jap Consul General in Hawaii was directed by
Tokyo to report even when there were no movements of ships in and out of
Pearl Harbor. *These Japanese instructions and reports pointed to an
attack by Japan upon the ships in Pearl Harbor*. The information sought
and obtained with such painstaking detail had no other conceivable
usefulness from a military viewpoint. Its utility was in planning and
executing an attack upon the ships in port. Its effective value was lost
completely when the ships left their reported berthings in Pearl
In the same connection General Short testified: 
"While the War Department G-2 may not have felt bound to let me know
about the routine operations of the Japanese in keeping track of our
naval ships, they should certainly have let me know that the Japanese
were getting reports of the exact location of the ships in Pearl Harbor,
which might indicate more than just keeping track, *because such details
would be useful only for sabotage, or for air or submarine attack in
Hawaii*. As early as October 9, 1941, G-2 in Washington new of this
Japanese espionage. *This message, analyzed critically, is really a
bombing plan for Pearl Harbor*."
In endeavoring to evaluate the intercepted dispatch of September 4 and
related dispatches, it is to be borne in mind that the Japanese were
insistent in their desire to secure information concerning the location
and movements of American vessels everywhere and not merely at Pearl
Harbor. There are no other dispatches before the committee, however, in
which *Tokyo* manifested an interest concerning the disposition of ships
*within* a harbor, as in the case of the "berthing plan," as
distinguished from the desire to know whether a vessel was at a
particular harbor. Viewing the September 24 instructions to her Honolulu
consul in this light, it would appear that Tokyo vas manifesting an
unusual interest in the presence of our Pacific fleet and the detailed
location thereof in Pearl Harbor.
The evidence reflects, however, that no one in Washington attached he
significance to the "berthing plan" which it is now possible to read
into it. To determine whether failure to appreciate the plan represents
a lack of imagination and a dereliction of duty, we consider now the
contentions of the officers who saw this intelligence before December 7,
1941, and the circumstances under which it was received in Washington.
At the time the "berthing plan" was translated, the practice was being
followed by Captain Kramer of preparing a gist of intercepted messages
to expedite consideration of them by recipients.  Asterisks were
employed along with the gist to provide an indication of the
significance of messages-one asterisk meant "interesting messages"; two
asterisks, "especially important or urgent messages."  The gist
relating to the berthing plan read:  "Tokyo directs special reports
In ships with(in) Pearl Harbor which is divided into five areas for the
purpose of showing exact location" and was indicated by one asterisk
 Id., at p. 7989
 The practice of preparing gists is indicated to have been
discontinued during the month of November 1941, for the reason that the
President insisted on seeing the original messages "because he was
afraid when they tried to condense them, someone would change the
meaning." See testimony of Captain Safford, Hewitt Inquiry Record, p.
408, also Clarke Inquiry Exhibit No. 23.
 Committee record pp. 11206, 11207.
 Id., at pp. 11207, 11208.
184 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
as being an "interesting message". In explaining his estimate of the
message, Captain Kramer testified: l36
"* * * Your interpretation, Senator, that this was a bombing map, I do
not believe, from conversations I had at the time in showing and going
over days' traffic with various recipients; I do not believe it was
interpreted by any of those persons as being materially different than
other messages concerning ship movements being reported by the Japanese
"I recollect that this was interpreted. I am uncertain of the precise
wording of the interpretation. This was considered, and *I believe it
was, approximately, my consideration at the time as being an attempt on
the part of the Japanese diplomatic service to simplify communications.*
"That view is substantiated by many factors.
"One is that the Japanese were repeatedly and continually directing
their diplomatic service to cut down traffic. They were repeatedly
preparing and sending out abbreviations to be used with codes already in
existence. Diplomatic codes were frequently asking for additional funds
for quarterly allotments, and so forth to cover telegraphic expenses.
Those expenses were usually paid and furnished in part when so requested
by Tokyo. Those and other considerations I think explain, probably, the
handling of this particular message, sir."
Upon being asked what evaluation he placed on the harbor berthing plan
and related intercepts, Admiral Wilkinson testified: 
"The Japanese for many years had the reputation, and the facts bore out
that reputation, of being meticulous seekers for every scrap of
information, whether by photography or by written report or otherwise.
"We had recently, as reported to me, apprehended two and I think three
Japanese naval officers on the west coast making investigations of
Seattle, Bremerton, Long Beach, and San Diego. In the reports that we
had gotten from them there had been indications of movements and
locations of ships; in the papers that they had there were instructions
for them to find out the movements and locations of ships except in
Hawaii and the Philippines, the inference being that these fellows that
were planted in America, these naval officers, were not to be
responsible for movements in Hawaii and the Philippines because there
were agencies finding that information there.
"My general impression of adding all this reputation and this fact and
these data together was that these dispatches were part of the general
information system established by the Japanese. We knew also that
certain information had been sought in Panama and again in Manila. I did
not, I regret now, of course attribute to them the bombing target
significance which now appears."
And again: 
"* * * the location of the ship, whether it was alongside of a dock or
elsewhere, did give an inference of work going on aboard her which would
be of value to the question of when she might be moved, what her state
of readiness was and the inference that we drew from this was that they
wanted to know everything they could not only about the movement of the
ships and those that were present and, therefore, accounted for and not
a threat to them in some other waters, but also with reference to those
that were present where they were located with reference to state of
repair. For instance, the ships that were particularly in Pearl Harbor
might be in repair and not ready to go to sea, whereas those at anchor
in the stream would be ready, or would be so on short notice. Those at
doublebanked piers might not be, particularly the inside one might take
some time to go out."
Admiral Wilkinson thought he had mentioned to one or more officers that
the Japanese seemed curious as to the lay-port in Pearl Harbor and
testified "at the time I thought that that was an evidence of their
nicety of intelligence." 
On the other hand, Admiral Stark, who stated he had no recollection of
having seen the berthing plan and accompanying messages prior to the
attack, testified: 
 Id., at p. 1160.
 Id., at pp. 4620, 4621.
 Id., at pp. 4622, 4623.
 Id., at p. 4624.
 Id., at pp. 5788, 5789.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 185
"These messages are of a class of message which gives positions of ships
in harbor, gives locations. The message, however, is distinctly
different from the usual type of ship report, which simply would say,
"So many ships" or give their names, in Pearl Harbor. This dispatch is
different in that it calls for the location of ship in the harbor in her
"I recall no such request from Tokyo to the field; that is, to the
Japanese people, to report like that except for Pearl Harbor. There
might have been. We did not see it. I believe there are one or two
places were ships were reported like in Puget Sound, in a certain berth
or a dock, alongside of a dock, but this dispatch while of a class is of
a character which is different.
"In the light of hindsight it stands out very clearly, with what we can
read into now, as indicating the possibility or at least the ground work
for a Japanese raid on Pearl Harbor. That significance which we now have
in the light of hindsight was not pointed out to me by anyone, nor do I
have the slightest recollection of anybody ever having given that
significance at the time."
Asked if he felt significance should have been attached to the plan at
the time it was received, Admiral Stark said: 
"It is very difficult to separate hindsight from foresight. I can only
say that it went through our people, it went through the Army, who were
likewise vitality interested in the defense of Pearl Harbor, and I do
not recollect anyone having pointed it out. There was literally a mass
of material coming in. We knew the Japanese appetite was almost
insatiable for detail in all respects. The dispatch might have been put
down as just another example of their great attention to detail.
"If I had seen it myself I do not know what I would have done. I might
have said, "Well, my goodness, look at this detail," or I might have
read into it because it is different, I might have said, "Well, this is
unusual. I wonder why they want it?" I might have gone on, and diagnosed
it or I might not. I simply did not know. We read it now in the light of
what has happened."
Captain McCollum,  who was not in Washington at the time the harbor
berthing plan was intercepted or translated, suggested certain reasons
why the plan would not have been interpreted as a "bombing plot." 
He observed that beginning in 1935 the Japanese Navy was apparently not
satisfied with the type of intelligence forwarded by the consular agents
and in consequence undertook to set up an observation net of its own,
particularly on the west coast of the United States, but that it was his
feeling the Japanese had been unable to put naval observers into the
consulate at Honolulu. Therefore. As he testified: 
"As we estimated it, the consul general at Honolulu was receiving,
through the Foreign Office at the instance of the Japanese Naval
Department, explicit directions of the type of intelligence that was
needed, much more in detail than any of the other key consulates on the
west coast, because he did not have the benefit of the services of a
Japanese Naval Intelligence officer within his consulate.
"Therefore this thing here, if I saw it, I am quite certain I would have
felt it was just another move to get explicit information, to cut down
the frequently voluble type of reports made by consular officials which
the Jap Navy did not like."
Captain McCollum further pointed out that the matter of how ships were
anchored and where they were anchored was designed to indicate the
facility with which the fleet was prepared to *sortie*, considering that
the anchorage at Pearl Harbor is "chopped up" into a number of more or
less independent locks. He testified: 
"To give a general statement of where the ships were, the stuff they are
requiring here, would require a rather long-winded dispatch, where the
same device such as breaking it up into areas A, B, and C, such a simple
device could be used. With
[141 Id., at pp. 5790, 6791.
 Capt. Arthur N. McCollum, Chief of the Far Eastern Section of
 Captain McCollum left Washington on September 24 and did not
return until October 11. Committee record, p. 9195.
 Committee record, pp. 9140, 9141.
 Id., at pp. 9178, 9179.
186 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
this area discovered, a rather simple and short dispatch would suffice
to give the essential information as to the location of the fleet and
also an indication of their readiness for sortie. I would suggest that
that is a reasonable, tenable hypothesis as to why they wished
information, apparently, in this detail."
In summary, Captain McCollum stated he would not now necessarily regard
the harbor berthing plan as a "bombing plan" unless "I had known Pearl
Harbor had been bombed." 
It appears clear that there were many other messages between Tokyo and
her consulates, received in Washington, indicating a likely Japanese
purpose to attack at points other than at Hawaii. 
These messages indicate a definite interest in the state of defenses at
many points. A dispatch from Tokyo on October 16 to its Seattle consul
instructed "Should patrolling be inaugurated by naval planes report it
at once."  In the same message the Consulate was instructed to
report on the movement and basing of warships at least once every 10
days, "As long as there is no great change," but a report was to be
submitted "Should more than 10 vessels of any type arrive or depart from
port at one time." A June 23, 1941 dispatch from Tokyo to Mexico
instructed:  "Regarding the plans for procuring maps of the Panama
Canal and vicinity, please have career attache Kihara make an official
trip to Panama * * *. Have the maps taken out by plane, and then have
Sato, the naval attache, bring them to Tokyo with him when he returns."
While no instructions from Tokyo to Panama are available subsequent to
August 2, 1941, the reports to Tokyo contain detailed information
concerning the location of airfields, air strength, ammunition, location
and camouflage of petroleum supply tanks, location and strength of
artillery patrols, radar detectors and their range, map procurement and
other matters which would obviously be of interest only if an attack on
the Panama Canal were contemplated.  While some of these messages
were translated after December 7, they have a distinct bearing on
whether, before the event, the harbor berthing plan was reasonably
designed to be a harbinger of the December 7 attack. 
With respect to other messages concerning defenses, Tokyo on August 1
requested Manila to obtain information "regarding the camouflage and
distinguishing marks of the American naval and military aeroplanes in
Manila".  On October 4 Tokyo instructed Manila "to make a
reconnaissance of the new defense works along the east, west, and
southern coasts of the Island of Luzon, reporting on their progress,
strength, etc."  Tokyo instructed Manila on November 5, pursuant to
a request of the "Naval General Staff", to obtain information with
respect to each port of call concerning "(1) conditions at airports on
land", "(2) types of planes at each, and number of planes", "(3)
warships; also machinery belonging to land forces", and "(4) state or
progress being made on all equipment and establishments."  On
November 15 Tokyo requested Manila to "make investigations again" as to
the number of large bombers in
 Id., at p. 9141.
 See committee exhibit No. 2.
 Id., at p. 111.
 Id., at p. 122.
 Id., at pp. 31-52
 General Marshall stated he was always in fear of a surprise attack
on United States territory but the probabilities pointed to the Panama
Canal and to the Philippines before Hawaii. Navy Court of inquiry
record, p. 863.
 Committee exhibit No. 2, p. 54.
 Id., at p. 72.
 Id., at p. 82,
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 187
the Philippines.  Some 50 messages between Manila and Tokyo during
the period August 1 to December 1, 1941, contained detailed information
concerning airfields, air strength and activity, strength and activity
of land forces, location of antiaircraft guns, and other items of
Seattle advised Tokyo on September 20 that a warship under repair at
Bremerton, Wash. Had "the upper part of the bridge and left side of the
bow spotted here and there with red paint".  A message of September
6 from Tokyo to Singapore and Batavia requested detailed information
concerning various types of fishing vessels should Japan "require the
use of these fishing vessels".  On October 22 a message from Tokyo
to Singapore reflected a specific request, on behalf of the vice chief
of the Japanese General Staff, for information concerning the air forces
stationed in the Federated Malay States.  Another dispatch from
Tokyo to Batavia on the same day stated that the Assistant Chief of
Staff desired an inspection and report "on the air force in the Dutch
Indies" in regard to training, information, and aerial combat methods;
organization, types, number, and location of planes; and types and
number of planes being sent from England and the United States. 
The exhibits are replete with evidence of the interest of Tokyo not only
in the state of defenses but in ships as well, at many different points.
For example, an intercepted dispatch from Tokyo to San Francisco of
November 29 read:  "Make full report beginning December 1 on the
following: Ship's nationality, ship's name, port from which it departed
(or at which it arrived), and port of destination (or from where it
started), date of departure, etc., in detail of all foreign commercial
and war ships now in the Pacific, Indian Ocean, and South China Sea."
Nor was the Honolulu consul the only one reporting the exact location of
ships in harbor. Manila advised Tokyo on November 12 that on the morning
of the 12th, an American cruiser of the Chester class entered port-"She
is tied up at dock No. 7 * * *."  And again on November 22, Manila
advised Tokyo, among other things, that a camouflaged British cruiser
entered port In the "morning of the 21st and anchored at pier No. 7 * *
*."  Other examples of such reports will be hereinafter set forth.
Even today, of course, we do not know as a matter of fact that the
"berthing plan" was a bomb plot. On the basis of testimony before he
committee, the desire to know or the supplying of information with
respect to the location of vessels *within* a harbor is not of itself
conclusive that its only purpose was in contemplation of an attack
inasmuch as such information also has the value of indicating what ships
are under repair and the readiness of vessels for sortie.  For
example, Seattle advised Tokyo on September 20, "Saratoga class aircraft
carrier, 1 ship (*tied up alongside the pier*)" at Bremerton.  San
Francisco advised Tokyo on October 2, "One Oklahoma class battle-
 Id., at p. 91.
 Id., at pp. 54-98.
 Id., at p. 109.
 Id., at p. 101.
 Id.. at p. 102.
 Id.. at p. 102.
 Id.. at p. 115.
 Id.. at p. 87.
 Id.. at p. 94.
 See Committee record, pp. 4622, 4623, 9178, and 9179.
 Committee exhibit No. 2, p. 109.
188 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
ship has arrived in port and is *moored in front of the Bethlehem
shipbuilding yard*.  It may be argued that if obtaining information
concerning the location of ships within a harbor should be construed as
definitely indicating a purpose to attack the ships at harbor then these
messages would logically appear to indicate a purpose to attack at
Bremerton and at San Francisco.
In seeking to determine whether the harbor berthing plan was in reality
a "bomb plot" it is noted that in making his report of December 5 
and his last report of December 6  to Tokyo concerning vessels at
Pearl Harbor, the Honolulu consul did not employ the system established
in the plan for indicating the location of ships within the harbor. In
the report of December 5, he said:
" * * * the following ships were in port on the afternoon of the 5th: 8
battleships, 3 light cruisers, 16 destroyers * * *."
In the last report, the consul said:
"On the evening of the 5th, among the battleships which entered port
were (garble) and one submarine tender. The following ships were
observed at anchor on the 6th: 9 battleships, 3 light cruisers, 3
submarine tenders, 17 destroyers and in addition there were 4 light
cruisers, 2 destroyers lying at docks (the heavy cruisers and airplane
carriers have all left) * * *."
Failure to use the plan for indicating the location of ships within the
harbor at the only time when it could have materially assisted the
attacking force in locating ships as targets for bombing, that is on
December 5 and 6 immediately before the attack, raises a serious
question as to whether the berthing plan was in reality a bomb plot at
Japanese interviewed since VJ-day have asserted that intelligence
obtained from the consulates was regarded as of little importance. They
did not include the intelligence under discussion in listing the
information which the Task Force employed in planning and executing the
attack on December 7. [168a]
The record reflects that no one in Washington interpreted the harbor
berthing plan of September 24 and related dispatches as indicative of an
attack on the fleet at Pearl Harbor or was in any way conscious of the
significance of the messages which it is now possible to read into them.
There was in consequence no conscious or deliberate withholding of this
intelligence from the Hawaiian commanders. General Marshall, and
Admirals Stark, Turner, and Ingersoll testified they had no recollection
of having seen these dispatches. 
The peculiar division of Pearl Harbor into many lochs, the insatiable
desire of Japan for meticulous information concerning vessels of other
governments everywhere, the manner in which the berthing plan lent
itself to convenience of communications, the fact that Tokyo was
repeatedly instructing its consulates to cut down on traffic, the
feeling in Washington that Tokyo had no naval observer in Honolulu and
in consequence more detailed instructions to its consulate there were
required, Japan's natural interest in full information concerning our
Pacific Fleet base, the many intercepted dispatches indicating a likely
 Id., at p. 110.
 Id., at p. 26.
 Id., at p. 29.
[168a] See Part II, this report concerning Japanese plans for the
attack; also section "The Role of Espionage in the Attack", Part III,
 Committee record, pp. 2912, 5788, 5108, and 11311. Admiral Stark
said: "We have been over this bomb plot thing from start to finish, all
of us in the front office, and I still not only have no recollection of
having seen it, it is my honest opinion that I did not see it."
Committee record, p. 13969.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 189
Japanese attack at points other than at Pearl Harbor-all of these
considerations necessarily entered into the appraisal of the berthing
an. It may be contended that under such circumstances it would be
manifestly unfair to criticize an officer with many other
responsibilities  for failure to interpret properly a message,
considered before the critical turn in our negotiations with Japan,
which we single out after the event for minute analysis and conclude may
have been designed to assist the Japanese in the bombing of Pearl
Similarly, it may be argued that the absence of apparent interest by
Japan in the defenses at Hawaii when compared with the avid interest
manifested in the defense facilities in the Philippines, Panama,
Singapore, Batavia, and on the west coast is indicative, in the days
before December 7, of the fact that Hawaii was a much less likely point
of attack than these other places; and that in this light, Tokyo's
detailed interest in our ship locations and movements was subject to the
reasonable construction that Japan desired to be warned in advance any
contemplated action by our fleet and was not seeking information with a
view to an attack upon it or, otherwise stated, that she desired
information with a view to the fleet's availability for distant
operations rather than its susceptibility as a target.  Further,
that Pearl Harbor was the base of the Pacific Fleet, the only
substantial deterrent to complete freedom of action by the Japanese Navy
in Pacific waters and that in consequence thereof an unusual interest by
Japan in the location of our fleet units would appear quite
understandable. It may be proper to insist that since Pearl Harbor was
the fleet base, Japan could be reasonably sure that substantial fleet
units would be located there at virtually all times;  and that,
with this in mind, failure to manifest an interest in the defenses of
Hawaii when compared with such an interest shown at other points has a
distinct bearing on whether the information exchanged between Tokyo and
Honolulu concerning ship locations and movements could have pointed in
any way to likelihood of an attack at Pearl Harbor. In this connection,
the evidence does reflect that none of the intercepted messages
translated before the attack, between Tokyo and Honolulu for over a year
prior to December 7, contain any reference to the defenses of the Army
or Navy in Hawaii as distinguished from locations of fleet units.
From these considerations it may be contended that a careful comparison
and evaluation of messages relating to espionage activities by Japan's
diplomatic establishments would not have reasonably indicated in the
days before December 7 any greater likelihood of an attack on Pearl
Harbor than was warned against in the dispatches sent the Hawaiian
commanders on November 27. 
CONCLUSIONS WITH RESPECT TO SHIPS IN HARBOR REPORTS
Despite the foregoing observations, we think there are certain
circumstances which distinguish the request for detailed information on
 See committee record, pp. 2131-2138.
 General Miles observed: "* * * this message taken alone would have
been of great military significance but it was not taken alone unless
you look at it by hindsight, which focuses all light on the event which
did happen. It was one of a great number of messages being sent by the
Japanese to various parts of the world in their attempt to follow the
movements of our naval vessels, a matter which we knew perfectly well
they were doing, and which we ourselves were doing in regard to the
Japanese." Committee record, p. 2100.
 See Hewitt Inquiry record, p. 407
 This appears to be the premise assumed by the Japanese in planning
and launching the attack. See Part II, this report.
 Committee exhibits Nos. 32 and 37, pp. 9 and 36, respectively.
190 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
the berthings of ships in Pearl Harbor from similar or other requests
for information concerning other points. War with Japan was admittedly
probable for months before it actually occurred. Many of our highest
military and naval authorities considered it all but inevitable. As the
imminence of war increased so increased the importance of our Pacific
Fleet, the home base of which was Pearl Harbor, for in the broad picture
of the Pacific, the fleet was our strong arm of defense. Safety and
fitness of the Pacific Fleet was of prime importance, and any
communication or information bearing thereon should have been given
prompt and full consideration by competent authority. We realize the
exceedingly great demands upon the intelligence divisions of the War and
Navy Departments occasioned by reason of the great flood of intelligence
coming in from all parts of the world in the days before Pearl Harbor.
Nor do we overlook the Japanese policy of acquiring detailed information
of every kind from many points. It may be fair to attribute to this and
other considerations the failure to see anything of unusual significance
in the request of September 24 for detailed information as to the
berthing of ships in Pearl Harbor; but it is difficult to escape the
feeling that, when the message of November 15 was translated on December
3 referring to the critical relations between Japan and the United
States and requesting that the "ships in harbor report" be made
irregularly but at least twice a week and directing that extra care be
taken to maintain secrecy, it should have raised in someone's mind the
thought that this intelligence was highly important because it dealt
with that which was most vital to our safety in the Pacific-the Pacific
Fleet. The message of November 20, translated December 4, directing a
comprehensive investigation of "the fleet (garble) bases" in the
neighborhood of the Hawaiian military reservation should not have
lessened such interest. 
It cannot be forgotten that a surprise attack by air on Pearl Harbor had
been listed and understood, both in Washington and Hawaii, as the
greatest danger to that base. We must assume that military men realized
that in order to execute successfully such an attack the Japanese would
necessarily need detailed information as to dispositions at the point of
attack. It would seem to be a natural consequence that if Japan
undertook an attack on Pearl Harbor she would seek to acquire such
detailed information and in point of time as nearly as possible to the
hour of such attempt.
We are unable to conclude that the berthing plan and related dispatches
pointed directly to an attack on Pearl Harbor, nor are we able to
conclude that the plan was a "bomb plot" in view of the evidence
indicating it was not such.  We are of the opinion, however, that
the berthing plan and related dispatches should have received careful
consideration and created a serious question as to their significance.
Since they indicated a particular interest in the Pacific Fleet's base
this intelligence should have been appreciated and supplied the
commander in chief of the Pacific Fleet and the commanding general of
the Hawaiian Department for their assistance, along with other
information and intelligence available to them, in making their estimate
of the situation.
 It may be argued that the fact that a "war warning" had been sent
the Fleet on November 27 along with the code destruction intelligence
before these latter messages were translated had a bearing on or
possibly conditioned the failure to attach significance to them.
 Admiral Kimmel said: "These Japanese instructions and reports
pointed to an attack by Japan upon the ships in Pearl Harbor." Committee
record, pp. 6779, 6780.
General Short said: "* * * such details would be useful only for
sabotage, or for air or submarine attack on Hawaii." Committee record,
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 191
THE "WINDS CODE" 
On November 19, 1941, Tokyo set up a code designed to be employed in
daily Japanese language short-wave news broadcasts or general
intelligence broadcasts in the event ordinary commercial channels of
communication were no longer available. Two circular  dispatches
Nos. 2353 and 2354 were translated by the Navy Department: 
"To: Washington 9 November 1941
" "Regarding the broadcast of a special message in an emergency.
"In case of emergency (danger of cutting off our diplomatic relations),
and the cutting off of international communications, the following
warnings will be added n the middle of the daily Japanese language
short-wave news broadcast.
"(1) In case of a Japan-U. S. relations in danger: HIGASHI NO KAZEAME.
"(2) Japan-U. S. S. R. relations: KITA NO KAZE KUMORI. 
"(3) Japan-British relations: NISHI NO KAZE HARE. 
"This signal will be given in the middle and at the end as a weather
forecast and each sentence will be repeated twice. When this is heard
destroy all code papers, etc. This is as yet to be a completely secret
"Forward as urgent intelligence."
 East wind rain.
 North wind cloudy.
 West wind clear.
"19 November 1941
"When our diplomatic relations are becoming dangerous, we will add the
following at the beginning and end of our general intelligence
"(1) If it is Japan-U. S. Relations, "HIGASHI"
"(2) Japan-Russia relations, "KITA"
"(3) Japan-British relations (including Thai, Malaya, and N. E. I.),
"The above will be repeated five times and included at beginning and
"Relay to Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires, Mexico City, San Francisco."
These intercepts were confirmed by a dispatch from the commander in
chief of the Asiatic Fleet to the Office of Naval Operations dated
November 28, 1941;  a message directed to the State Department from
its diplomatic representative in Batavia dated December 4, 1941; 
and a dispatch from the Army's military representative in Batavia,
reading as follows: 
"Japan will notify her consuls of war decision in her foreign broadcasts
as weather report at end. East wind rain, United States. North wind
cloudy, Russia. West wind clear, England with attack on Thailand, Malay
and Dutch East Indies. Will be repeated twice or may use compass
directions only. In this case words will be introduced five times in
The foregoing message was sent "deferred" by naval communications for
General Miles of the War Department and was not decoded until the
morning of December 5, 1941.
Both the War and Navy Departments extended themselves in an effort to
monitor for a message in execution of the winds code. Exten-
 A detailed record study of the winds code will be found set forth
as Appendix E to this report.
 The circular dispatches were designed for Japanese diplomatic
 Committee exhibit No. 1, pp. 154, 155.
 Id,, No. 142.
192 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
sive evidence has been taken concerning the matter, the preponderate
weight of which indicates that no genuine execute message was
intercepted by or received in the War and Navy Departments prior to the
attack on Pearl Harbor. Investigation conducted in Japan strongly
indicates no execute message was dispatched before the attack and the
British and Dutch, who were also monitoring for an execute message, have
advised that no such message was intercepted.  A reasonable
construction of the code is that it was designed for use in the event
ordinary commercial channels of communication were no longer available
to Japan, a contemplation which did not materialize prior to Pearl
Harbor. The fact that a message "West wind clear," applying to England,
was broadcast after the attack tends to confirm this conclusion. 
Inasmuch as the question of the winds code has been one of the few
disputed factual issues in the Pearl Harbor case, there has been set
forth in Appendix E to this report a detailed study of the matter.
*Based on the evidence it is concluded that no genuine "winds" message
in execution of the code and applying to the United States was received
by the War or Navy Departments prior to the attack on December 7, 1941*.
It appears, however, that messages were received which were initially
thought possibly to be in execution of the code but were determined not
to be execute messages.
Granting for purposes of discussion that a genuine execute message
applying to the winds code was intercepted before December 7, we believe
that such fact would have added nothing to what was already known
concerning the critical character of our relations with the Empire of
"HIDDEN WORD" CODE
In addition to the winds code the Japanese in a dispatch on November 27
established another emergency system of communications that has been
familiarly referred to as the "hidden word" code.  The dispatch
establishing this code, which was sent as a circular to all diplomatic
establishments, stated: "With international relations becoming more
strained, the following system of dispatches, using INGO DENPO (hidden
word, or misleading language telegrams) is placed in effect" and further
"in order to distinguish these cables from others, the English word STOP
will be added at the end as an indicator." Thereafter, a number of code
words, apparently arbitrarily chosen, were set forth with the meaning of
each word placed opposite thereto. Among the code words were: HATTORI
meaning "Relations between Japan and * * * (blank) are not in accordance
with expectation"; KOYANAGI meaning "England"; and MINAMI meaning "U. S.
On the morning of December 7 a circular telegram from Tokyo was
intercepted reading: 
"URGENT 92494 *KOYANAGI* RIJIYORI SEIRINOTUGOO ARUNITUKI *HATTORI
MINAMI* KINENBUNKO SETURITU KIKINO KYOKAINGAKU SIKYUU DENPOO ARITASS
 Committee exhibit No. 1, pp. 186-188. The original code was
supplemented by a dispatch of December 2 from from Tokyo to Singapore
which was translated after the attack. Committee exhibit No. 1, pp.
 Committee exhibit No. 142-B.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 193
The translation as made by the Navy of the foregoing hidden-word message
was distributed in Washington to authorized recipients of, Magic at 11
a. m. on December 7 in the following form: 
"Relations between Japan and England are not in accordance with
This was not the complete message, which should have been translated:
"Relations between Japan and the following countries are not in
accordance with expectation: England, United States."  The reason
for the message having been distributed on the morning December 7 with
the words *United States* omitted is explained by the fact that Captain
Kramer in his haste occasioned by the necessity delivering other
messages, including the "one o'clock message" overlooked the code word
relating to the United States and translated the message as meaning only
that "relations between Japan and England are not in accordance with
expectation." He indicated that later discovered the error and
telephoned at "a quarter of one or 1 o'clock" the correction to his
superior and an officer of Military Intelligence. 
It is clear that the hidden-word message as literally translated 
contained no information of any import not already greatly overshadowed,
as will hereinafter appear, by other intelligence available on the
morning of December 7 even had the words *United States* been included
at the time of distribution.
THE "DEADLINE MESSAGES"
The following message, No. 736, from Tokyo to the Japanese Embassy in
Washington, relating to the then current Japanese United States
negotiations, was intercepted on November 5, 1941: 
"Because of various circumstances, *it is absolutely necessary that all
arrangements for the signing of this agreement be completed by the 25th
of this month*. I realize that this is a difficult order, but under the
circumstances it is an unavoidable one. Please understand this
thoroughly and tackle the problem of saving the Japanese-U. S. Relations
from falling into a chaotic condition. Do so with great determination
and with unstinted effort, I beg of you.
"This information is to be kept strictly to yourself only."
On November 11, 1941 another message from Tokyo to Washington, o. 762,
was intercepted, referring to the deadline set in the message November
"Judging from the progress of the conversations, there seem to be
indications at the United States is still not fully aware of the
exceedingly criticalness of the situation here. *The fact remains that
the date set forth in my message #736** is absolutely immovable under
present conditions. It is a definite dead line and therefore is
essential that a settlement be reached by about that time*. The session
of Parliament opens on the 15th (work will start on [the following
day?]) according to the schedule. The government must have a clear
picture of things to come, in presenting its case at the session. You
can see, therefore, that the situation is nearing climax, and that time
is indeed becoming short.
"I appreciate the fact that you are making strenuous efforts, but in
view of the above mentioned situation, will you redouble them. When
talking to the Secretary State and others, drive the points home to
them. Do everything in your power
 The Army translation of the message supplied in March 1944 read as
follows "Relations between Japan and ------- are approaching a crisis
(on the verge of danger): England, United States." Committee exhibit No.
 Hewitt Inquiry record, pp. 133-136.
 Id, at pp. 579-581.
 Committee exhibit No. 1, p. 100.
 Id., at pp. 116, 117.
194 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
to get a clear picture of the U. S. attitude in the minimum amount of
time. *At the same time do everything in your power to have them give
their speedy approval to our final proposal*.
"We would appreciate being advised of your opinion on whether or not
they will accept our final proposal A."
The deadline was again referred to in a dispatch of November 15 from
Tokyo to Washington, stating: 
"It is true that the United States may try to say that since we made no
particular mention of the changed status of the talks, they were under
the impression that they were still of a preliminary nature.
"Whatever the case may be, *the fact remains that the date set forth in
my message #736 is an absolutely immovable one*. Please, therefore, make
the United States see the light, so as to make possible the signing of
the agreement by that date."
Referring to a dispatch from its Washington Ambassador, the following
message from Tokyo was intercepted on November 16: 
"I have read your #1090,  and you may be sure that you have all my
gratitude for the efforts you have put forth, but *the fate of our
Empire hangs by the slender thread of a few days*, so please fight
harder than you ever did before.
"What you say in the last paragraph of your message is, of course, so
and I have given it already the fullest consideration, but I have only
to refer you to the fundamental policy laid down in my #725.  Will
you please try to realize what that means. In your opinion we ought to
wait and see what turn the war takes and remain patient. However, I am
awfully sorry to say that the situation renders this out of the
question. I set the dead line for the solution of these negotiations in
my #736, and there will be no change. Please try to understand that. You
see how short the time is; therefore, do not allow the United States to
sidetrack us and delay the negotiations any further. Press them for a
solution on the basis of our proposals, and do your best to bring about
an immediate solution."
Responding to requests of its Ambassadors,  in an intercepted
message of November 22, 1941, Tokyo extended the deadline date from
November 25 to November 29 in the following terms: 
"To both you Ambassadors.
"It is awfully hard for us to consider changing the date we set in my
#736. You should know this, however, I know you are working hard. Stick
to our fixed policy and do your very best. Spare no efforts and try to
bring about the solution we desire. There are reasons beyond your
ability to guess why we wanted to settle Japanese-American relations by
the 25th, but if within the next three or four days you can finish your
conversations with the Americans; *if the signing can be completed by
the 29th*, (let me write it out for you-twenty-ninth); if the pertinent
notes can be exchanged; if we can get an understanding with Great
Britain and the Netherlands; and in short if everything can be finished,
*we have decided to wait until that date*. This time we mean it, that
the dead line absolutely cannot be changed. *After that things are
automatically going to happen*. Please take this into your careful
consideration and work harder than you ever have before. This for the
present, is for the information of you two Ambassadors alone."
As a follow-up to the foregoing message, Tokyo on November 24, 1941,
advised its Ambassadors that the time limit set in the message of
November 22 was in Tokyo time. 
It is clear from the foregoing messages that "things are automatically
going to happen" after November 29, Tokyo time. It is equally clear from
information now available that the happening was to be the contemplated
departure of the Japanese task force to attack
 Id., at p. 130.
 Id., at pp. 137, 138.
 See committee exhibit No. 1, pp. 127-129.
 Id., at pp. 92-94.
 Id., at p, 159.
 Id., at p. 165.
 Id., at p. 173.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 195
Pearl Harbor. But the question is not what the deadline messages are en
now to mean but what they reasonably conveyed to officials in Washington
in the days before December 7.
Tokyo had indicated the extreme importance of time as the dead line
approached:  "The fate of our Empire hangs by the slender thread of
a few days." But does this importance and the fact of the deadline
indicate an attack at Pearl Harbor or, for that matter, an attack on the
United States elsewhere? It must be recalled that on August 17,
following the Atlantic Conference, President Roosevelt advised the
Government of Japan that if she took any further steps in pursuance of a
program of domination by force or threat of force of neighboring
countries, the Government of the United States would be compelled to
take any and all steps necessary toward insuring the security of the
United States.  It is not unreasonable to conclude that, failing to
secure a satisfaction of her demands by November 29, Japan had
determined to launch a program of aggression which she felt would
involve her in war against the United States. The extensive employment
of her forces to the south after November 29, it would reasonably
appear, was regarded as the action to be taken upon expiration of the
deadline date. Washington had expressed this estimate to Admiral Kimmel
on November 27: 
"The number and equipment of Japanese troops and the organization of
naval task forces indicates an amphibious expedition against either the
Philippines, Thai, or Kra Peninsula or possibly Borneo."
One of the factors considered in dispatching the "war warning" to
Admiral Kimmel on November 27 was that of alerting the Fleet before the
cut-off date of November 29.  We believe that the dispatch of
November 27 to Admiral Kimmel beginning, "This dispatch is to be
considered a war warning" and the dispatch to General Short of the same
date advising that "hostile action possible at any moment" was the
equivalent of and in fact was of greater significance than the so-called
"deadline messages" merely informing that things would automatically
happen after November 29.
Based on what is now known concerning the plan of the Japanese attack,
it is believed that in contemplation of the future intelligence such as
the deadline messages could well be supplied field commanders as an item
of information for their assistance along with dispatches designed to
alert and to supply them with an estimate of the situation.
DISPATCHES INDICATING FRAUDULENT NATURE OF NEGOTIATIONS AFTER NOVEMBER
The following message (No. 844) from Tokyo to the Japanese Embassy in
Washington, intercepted on November 28, 1941, indicated that
negotiations thereafter were to be a sham and fraud: 
"Well, you two Ambassadors have exerted superhuman efforts, but in spite
of this, the United States has gone ahead and presented this humiliating
proposal. This was quite unexpected and extremely regrettable. The
Imperial Government can by no means use it as a basis for negotiations.
*Therefore, with a report of the views of the Imperial Government on
this American proposal which I will send
 See Part I, supra "Diplomatic Background of the Pearl Harbor
 Committee exhibit No. 37, p. 36.
 See testimony of Admiral Turner. It also appears that the November
24 warning to the commander in chief of the Pacific Fleet was sent with
a view to the deadline date of November 25.
 Committee exhibit No. 1, p. 195.
196 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
you in two or three days, the negotiations will be de facto ruptured.
This is inevitable. However, I do not wish you to give the impression
that the negotiations are broken off*. Merely say to them that you are
awaiting instructions and that, although the pinions of your Government
are not yet clear to you, to your own way of thinking the Imperial
Government has always made just claims and has borne great sacrifices
for the sake of peace in the Pacific. Say that we have always
demonstrated long-suffering and conciliatory attitude, but that, on the
other hand, the United States has been unbending, making it impossible
for Japan to establish negotiations. Since things have come to this
pass, I contacted the man you told me about in your #1180 and he said
that under the present circumstances that you suggest is entirely
unsuitable. From now on do the best you can".
In the light of hindsight, an intercepted dispatch of November 29
(translated November 30) portrayed the extent of Japanese guile in
perpetrating the fraud: 
"Re my #844.
"We wish you would make one more attempt verbally along the following
lines: The United States government has (always?) taken a fair and
judicial position and has formulated its policies after full
consideration of the claims of both sides.
"However, the Imperial Government is at a loss to understand why it has
now taken the attitude that the new proposals we have made cannot be
made the basis of discussion, but instead has made new proposals which
ignore actual conditions n East Asia and would greatly injure the
prestige of the Imperial Government.
"With such a change of front in their attitude toward the China problem,
what as become of the basic objectives that the U S. Government has made
the basis of our negotiations during these seven months? On these points
we would request careful self-reflection on the part of the United
"(In carrying out this instruction, please be careful that this does not
lead to anything like a breaking off of negotiations.)"
It is to be noted in passing that the foregoing dispatch, without
benefit of retrospection, conceivably suggested at the time of its
interception, the possibility that Japan was putting out a "feeler" with
a view to our withdrawing from the position assumed in Secretary Hull's
note of November 26.
In an intercepted dispatch from Tokyo to its Washington Ambassador on
December 1 it was observed that the deadline date of November 9 had come
and gone with the situation continuing to be increasingly critical,
however, "to prevent the United States from becoming unduly suspicious
we have been advising the press and others that though here are some
wide differences between Japan and the United States, the negotiations
are continuing. (The above is for only your information.)" 
During a trans-Pacific telephone conversation between Yamamoto in Tokyo
and Kurusu on November 27 (translated November 28) instructions were
issued to Kurusu: "Regarding negotiations, don't break them off." 
The following significant trans-Pacific conversation was had between
Kurusu and Yamamoto on November 30: 
"KURUSU. It is all arranged for us to meet Hull tomorrow. We received a
short one from you, didn't we? Well, we will meet him in regard to that.
There is a longer one coming isn't there? In any case we are going to
see him about the short one (i. e., telegram. The longer one is probably
Tokyo's reply to Mr. Hull's proposals.)
"YAMAMOTO. Yes. I see.
"KURUSU. The President is returning tomorrow. He is hurrying home.
"Y. Is there any special significance to this?
"K. The newspapers have made much of the Premier's speech, and it is
having strong repercussions here.
 Id., at p. 199.
 Id., at p. 208.
 Id., at pp. 188-191.
 Id., at pp. 206-207.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 197
"Y. Is that so.
"K. Yes. It was a drastic statement he made. The newspapers carried
large headlines over it; and the President seems to be returning because
of it. There doubt are other reasons, but this is the reason the
newspapers are giving.
"Unless greater caution is exercised in speeches by the Premier and
others, it puts us in a very difficult position. All of you over there
must watch out about these ill-advised statements Please tell Mr. Tani.
"Y. We are being careful.
"K. We here are doing our best, but these reports are seized upon by the
correspondents and the worst features enlarged up. Please caution the
Premier, the Foreign Minister, and others. Tell the Foreign Minister
that we had expected to hear something different, some good word, but
instead we get this. (i. e. Premier's speech.)
"(After a pause, Kurusu continues, using voice code.)
"K. What about the internal situation? (In Japan.)
"Y. No particular ----- (one or two words faded out)
"K. Are the Japanese-American negotiations to continue?
"K. *You were very urgent about them before, weren't you; but now you
want them to stretch out. We will need your help. Both the Premier and
the Foreign Minister will need to change the tone of their speeches*!-Do
you understand? Please all use more discretion.
"Y. When will you see them. The 2nd?
"K. Let's see-this is Sunday midnight here. Tomorrow morning at ten.
That will be Monday morning here.
"Actually the real problem we are up against is the effects of
happenings in the South. You understand don't you?
"Y. Yes. Yes. How long will it be before the President gets back?
"K. I don't know exactly. According to news reports he started at 4:00
this afternoon. He should be here tomorrow morning sometime.
"Y. Well then-Goodbye."
Admiral Kimmel in testifying before the joint committee said: 
"The intercepted Japanese diplomatic dispatches show that on and after
November 29, a Japanese plan of action automatically went into effect;
that the plan was such importance that it involved the fate of the
empire; and that Japan urgently wanted the United States to believe that
negotiations were continuing after the deadline date to prevent
suspicion as to the nature of the plan.
"What was this plan? Why such elaborate instructions to stretch out
negations as a pretext to hide the operation of this plan? Anyone
reading the Japanese intercepted messages would face this question.
"Certainly the concealed Japanese plans which automatically went into
effect on November 29 would hardly be the Japanese movement in Indo-
China * * * "No effort was made to mask the movements or presence of the
naval forces moving southward, because physical observations of that
movement were unavoidable and the radio activity of these forces would
provide a desirable semblance of normalcy" (Testimony of Admiral Inglis,
Committee Transcript, page 453.) The troop movements to southern Indo-
China were the subject of formal diplomatic exchanges between the two
governments of Japan and the United States.
* * * * *
"Thus, it was apparent to the Japanese government from this formal
representation of the United States that our government was aware of the
movement in do-China. The United States expressed its concern about
potential Japanese action against the Philippines, the East Indies,
Malaya, or Thailand. There was therefore, very little reason for Japan
to keep up a pretext of negotiations for the purpose of disguising these
"Consequently, as time went on after November 29, and as Japan insisted
to her envoys upon the continuance of negotiations as a pretext to
divert the suspicion the United States, it must have been apparent to a
careful student of the intercepted dispatches that Japan on a deadline
date of November 29 had put into effect an operation, which was to
consume a substantial time interval before its results were apparent to
this government, and which appeared susceptible of effective concealment
in its initial phases."
 Committee record, pp. 6791-6793.
198 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
The observations of Admiral Kimmel are well taken, however, they are
colored by knowledge of subsequent events. He has stated that on or
after November 29 "A Japanese *plan* of action automatically went into
effect" whereas the Japanese had stated that after that date "things are
automatically going to happen." He comments that "negotiations were
continuing after the deadline date to prevent suspicion as to the nature
of the plan" whereas it is only after the event that this ruse could be
apparent. He refers to the "concealed Japanese plans" and observes that
Japan's open move to the South could not be the "automatic move." This
premise presupposes that the "automatic move" was to be concealed, a
fact which was not and could not be known until after the attack.
Admiral Kimmel makes reference to the intensification of Japanese
activity to the south about November 29  but fails to consider that
this activity was subject to the reasonable construction that the
"automatic move" was the move to the South and the desire to "stretch
out" negotiations was a natural step in seeking to prevent a thwarting
of Japanese plans in that direction before she was fully poised for
attack. That the Japanese movement to the South effectively diverted
attention from other points and effectively disguised the strike against
Pearl Harbor is indisputable. But this is known only after the attack.
With the benefit of hindsight it is possible to attach to the fraudulent
character of Japanese negotiations after November 28 the greatest
significance-to see that it clothed a Japanese action fraught with
typical treachery. But it is clear from the evidence that the salient
questions in the minds of responsible officials in Washington in the few
days before Pearl Harbor was not-*Would the Japanese attack*?- but
*when* and *where* would she attack? The fact that an attack would come
was the considered judgment of our military. The Tokyo dispatch of
November 28 did not supply the highly essential information which was
desired. Neither the intercepted dispatches from Tokyo indicating the
fraudulent nature of negotiations after November 28 nor the deadline
messages supplied the *when* or *where* of the attack. We do not believe
that this intelligence, if taken together, would have predicted Pearl
Harbor as a likely place of attack.
To have advised Admiral Kimmel and General Short on November 28 that
negotiations thereafter were a Japanese fraud could not have suggested
itself strongly to officials in Washington who had only the day before
told these commanders: "This dispatch is to be considered a war warning.
Negotiations with Japan looking toward stabilization of conditions in
the Pacific have ceased and an aggressive move by Japan is expected
within the next few days"; and "Japanese future action unpredictable but
hostile action possible at any moment."
STATUS OF DIPLOMATIC NEGOTIATIONS AND THE ARMY DISPATCH OF NOVEMBER 27
It is to be recalled that the "war warning" dispatch of November 27 from
the Chief of Naval Operations to Admiral Kimmel related, with respect to
the status of our diplomatic relations with the Japanese, "Negotiations
with Japan looking toward stabilization of condi-
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 199
tions in the Pacific *have ceased* * * *." The message from the War
Department to General Short, on the other hand, stated "Negations with
Japan appear to be terminated to *all practical purposes with only the
*barest possibilities* that the Japanese might come back and offer to
The statement has been made that the estimate of the diplomatic
situation given General Short was not accurate and left the impression
ere was still a possibility of the negotiations continuing whereas we
were in reality at "sword's point" with Japan. 
The message stated negotiations appeared to be terminated to *all
practical purposes* with *only the barest possibilities* that the
Japanese might offer to continue. To be sure Secretary Hull had advised
the Secretary of War on the morning of November 27 that he had "broken
the whole matter off"-had abandoned the idea of a modus vivendi-and that
he had washed his hands of it and "it is now in the hands of you and
Knox, the Army and Navy."  But this was precisely the duty of the
Secretary of State-*to advise the Army and Navy when the probabilities
were that negotiations had passed beyond the diplomatic age and were in
the hands of the military*. Secretary Hull was indicating that he had
given up the idea of a temporary diplomatic truce with Japan and was
expressing his personal and official feeling that the Japanese
Government would not respond to our Government's note of November 26 in
such manner as to permit further negotiations. Mr. Hull did not *know*
that Japan would not possibly reply with a counter proposal nor did
anyone in our Government in Washington at the time the November 27
dispatch was prepared.
In recounting the circumstances attending the November 27 dispatch to
the Commanding General of the Hawaiian Department (as well as to Panama,
the Western Defense Command, and the Philippines) Secretary Stimson
stated that he telephoned the President on the morning of November 27
suggesting that a final alert be sent pointing out that commanders be on
the qui vive for any attack and explaining the exact situation. He
stated the President approved his idea. As related by Mr. Stimson: 
"Ordinarily, of course, there would be no reason for me to participate
in the sending of any such message which was the normal function of the
military staff.  As the President himself, however, had now
actually directed the sending the the message, and as I wanted the
message clearly to apprise the commanding officers in the various areas
as to exactly what the diplomatic situation was, I undertook to
participate in the forming of this message myself. In order that it
should be strictly accurate, I called up Mr. Hull myself on the
telephone and got his exact statement as to the status of the
negotiations, which was then incorporated in the first sentence of the
 See committee exhibit No. 167. The comment of the Army Pearl
Harbor Board was: "This statement on Japanese information is inadequate.
It did not convey to Short the full import of the information concerning
the American-Japanese relations which was in the hands of the War
Department. It was misleading in that it stated that there was a bare
possibility of the resumption of negotiations, which carried with it the
implication that such resumption would influence the Japanese-American
relations, i. e., that war might not come. The War Department was
convinced that war would come."
 See Part I, supra, section "Diplomatic and Military Liaison in
 See statement of Mr. Stimson, committee record, p. 14395.
 General Marshall who ordinarily would have prepared such a
dispatch was in North Carolina on November 27 incident to troop
maneuvers. It appears that prior to his departure from Washington he had
discussed generally with General Gerow the matter of sending a warning
message to our outpost commanders. The message was finally prepared by
Secretary Stimson in collaboration with General Gerow, among others. See
statement of Mr. Stimson, committee record, pp. 14394, 14395.
200 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
It is to be noted that, according to Mr. Stimson's diary, after
Secretary Hull had told him the matter was now in the hands of the Army
and Navy, he called the President who gave him a little different view-
"He said they had ended up, but they ended up with a magnificent
statement prepared by Hull. I found out afterwards that this was not a
reopening of the thing but a statement of our constant and regular
position."  It was later during the day, while in conference with
the Secretary of Navy and General Gerow incident to preparing the
warning dispatch, that Mr. Stimson called Mr. Hull  and "got the
exact statement from him of what the situation was."  And from
information available on November 27 there was *only the barest
possibility*, precisely the statement in the warning, that Japan would
accept or respond with a counter proposal to the note of November 26.
It is to be noted that it was not until November 28 that a dispatch from
Tokyo to Washington was intercepted stating in part: 
"* * * with a report of the views of the Imperial Government on this
American proposal which I will send you in two or three days, the
negotiations will be de facto ruptured. This is inevitable. However, I
do not wish you to give the impression that the negotiations are broken
While this message would indicate at the time and we now know it to be a
fact that Japanese negotiations were thereafter a fraud, on the very
next day, November 29, a dispatch from Tokyo to Washington was
intercepted stating,  "We wish you would make *one more attempt*
verbally along the following lines," thereafter suggesting a line of
approach in the discussions and concluding, "In carrying out this
instruction, please be careful that this does not lead to anything like
a breaking off of negotiations." Here there is manifested more than a
"bare possibility" that the Japanese would continue the negotiations and
had this *Magic* message been supplied General Short there is no doubt
he would have concluded the same thing even after November 27. Indeed,
had Admiral Kimmel and General Short been supplied all of the diplomatic
messages reviewed by this Committee it is concluded that their estimate
of the diplomatic situation would not have gone beyond a belief that
there was only the barest possibility that Japan would continue the
negotiations; for the messages indicate throughout a conflicting and
variable disposition by Japan. With respect to pursuance of the
negotiations and her desire for peace. 
*The message to General Short is regarded as more accurately stating the
status of the diplomatic negotiations than did the Navy message advising
flatly that negotiations had ceased*. The action taken by the Navy was
with a view to making clear beyond question the seriousness  of the
situation whereas the Army message, as stated by Secretary Stimson,
sought to give General Short the *exact* diplomatic situation. It is to
be noted that General Short had available the
 Committee record, p. 14422.
 See testimony of Mr. Hull, committee record, p. 1188.
 See Mr. Stimson's diary committee record, p. 14423; see also pp.
 Committee exhibit No. 1, p. 195.
 Id., at p. 199.
 See in this connection the testimony of Admiral Leigh Noyes,
committee record, pp. 12720-12722 It should be noted that Captain
McCollum said: "I discounted anything which showed that they were not
going to jump on us. Everything I tried to say is that I felt that they
were going to jump on us, that I was convinced that the situation
between us and Japan was intensely acute. Had I not felt that way I
certainly should not have put my office on a 24-hour basis early in
November." Committee record, p. 9268.
 See testimony of Admiral Turner, committee record, p. 5163.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK: 201
Navy estimate of the situation inasmuch as he saw the "war warning" of
November 27 just as Admiral Kimmel, in turn, saw the War Department
warning of the same date.
Even conceding for purposes of discussion that the dispatch to General
Short should have contained the same statement as did the Navy message;
that is, "negotiations * * * have ceased", such does not in any way
alter the responsibilities in the case. Certainly in any situation no
commanding officer will determine his course of action on the basis of
the bare possibility that negotiations may be continued. How much more
is this true when in the same message he is told that hostilities are
possible at any moment and is given orders indicating the necessity for
defense against an attack from without!
It is in fact believed that had the message been otherwise worded,
stating only that there was a *possibility the negotiations would be
ruptured* and carrying the same orders, it was the duty of the
Commanding General of the Hawaiian Department to gird his defense
against the implications of that possibility. General Short was advised
there was only the barest possibility that negotiations were *not
FAILURE TO FOLLOW-UP ON THE SHORT REPLY OF NOVEMBER 28
It is to be recalled that General Short's reply to the warning message
of November 27 signed "Marshall,"  read: 
"Report Department alerted to prevent sabotage. Liaison with Navy reurad
our seven two twenty seventh."
The evidence reflects that it was the responsibility of the War Plans
Division of the War Department to prepare the warning and the orders it
contained for approval by the Chief of Staff or the Secretary of War.
 Having instructed the commanding general in Hawaii to report
measures taken, it was the responsibility of the War Plans Division to
review the report and to advise the Hawaiian commander in the event the
action taken by him was not in keeping with the desires of the War
Department. The brief report of action taken, as sent by General Short,
was initialed by General Gerow, Chief of the War Plans Division and by
the Secretary of War.  The evidence is not clear as to whether the
report was seen by General Marshall inasmuch as it was not initialed by
him although he did initial other reports from overseas garrisons to
which the Short report may have been attached. 
 For reference convenience, this dispatch was as follows:
"Negotiations with Japan appear to be terminated to all practical
purposes with only the barest possibilities that the Japanese Government
might come back and offer to continue. Japanese future action
unpredictable but hostile action possible at any moment. If hostilities
cannot be avoided the United States desires that Japan commit the first
overt act. This policy should not, repeat not, be construed as
restricting as you to a course of action that might jeopardize your
defense. Prior to hostile Japanese action you are directed to undertake
such reconnaissance and other measures as you deem necessary but these
measures should be carried out so as not, repeat not, to alarm civil
population or disclose intent. Report measures taken. Should hostilities
occur you will carry out the tasks assigned in rainbow five so far as
they pertain to Japan. Limit dissemination of this highly secret
information to minimum essential officers." (Committee exhibit No. 32,
 See exhibit No. 32, p. 12. This is the form of the message as
paraphrased and reviewed in the War Department. The message as sent
read: "Reurad four seven two 27th. Report Department alerted to prevent
sabotage. Liaison with the Navy. Short." It was addressed to the *Chief
 See testimony of General Gerow, committee record, p. 2687 et seq.
202 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
General Marshall testified: 
"I do not remember whether or not I saw General Short's reply, but the
presumption must be that I did. In any event that was my opportunity to
intervene which I did not do."
General Gerow testified that when the reply from General Short came
through he assumed it was in answer to the G-2 message that was sent by
General Miles to the Hawaiian Department  concerning the likelihood
of subversive activities.  He stated that after seeing the reply he
sent it to Colonel Bundy (now deceased) [229a] who headed the "plans
group" and that "it is reasonable to assume that he may possibly have
interpreted the message to mean, or the part of the message which said
'liaison with the Navy,' that the commanding general out there had
instituted protective measures against sabotage and was working with the
Navy to arrange for other defensive measures, including reconnaissance."
 It should be noted that General Gerow did not discuss the matter
with Colonel Bundy but merely suggested this as a reasonable assumption
from the way the message was worded General Gerow said: "I think my
executive officer, or the chief of any plans group, might possibly have
interpreted the message that way, and that is why it was not brought
back to me and my attention invited to the fact that it did not
explicitly cover the operation."  He observed that the reference to
a "No. 472" meant nothing to him at the time since this number was put
on the outgoing message by the Signal Corps and was not the number
assigned the document by the War Plans Division. 
General Gerow admitted that no inquiry was sent to General Short with
respect to his report of action taken and that in the light of
subsequent events he felt "it might have been desirable to send such an
inquiry, and had such an inquiry been sent it would probably have
developed the fact that the commanding general in Hawaii was not at that
time carrying out the directive in the message signed 'Marshall'." 
He remarked that "if that had been done, there would have been an
opportunity to correct the situation" but that he did not believe "the
message could necessarily be interpreted as meaning that sabotage
measures only were being taken."  After stating that he interpreted
the report of General Short to be in reply to the Miles message
concerning subversive activities and noting that such an interpretation
left him without any reply whatever from the Hawaiian Department with
respect to the November 27 warning,
 Committee record, p. 3010. See also in this connection. Committee
Record, pp. 2899 and 3088.
 This message, addressed to G-2 Hawaiian Department, read:
"Japanese negotiations have come to practical stalemate. Hostilities may
ensue. Subversive activities may be expected. Inform Commander General
and Chief of Staff only." Committee exhibit No. 32, p. 10.
 Committee record, p. 2714
[229a] Col. Charles W. Bundy was killed in a plane crash shortly after
the attack while en route to Pearl Harbor.
 Id, at pp. 2713, 2714. In this connection Secretary Stimson said:
he (General Short) then sent a reply message to Washington which gave no
adequate notice of what he had failed to do and which was susceptible of
being taken, and was taken, as a general compliance with the main
warning from Washington. My initials show that this message crossed my
desk, and in spite of my keen interest in the situation it certainly
gave me no intimation that the alert order against an enemy attack was
not being carried out. Although it advised me that General Short was
alert against sabotage, I had no idea that being 'alerted to prevent
sabotage' was in any way an express or implied denial of being alert
against an attack by Japan's armed forces. The very purpose of a
fortress such as Hawaii is to repel such an attack, and Short was the
commander of that fortress. Furthermore, Short's statement in his
message that liaisons was being carried out with the Navy, coupled with
the fact that our message of November 27 had specifically directed
reconnaissance, naturally gave the impression that the various
reconnaissance and other defensive measures in which the cooperation of
the Army and the Navy is necessary, were under way and a proper alert
was in effect." See statement of Mr. Stimson, committee record, pp.
 Committee record, pp. 2716, 2717.
 Id., at p. 2715.
 Id., at p. 2716.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 203
General Gerow explained: "I was handling a great many papers at that
time, and it was the responsibility of the officers in my division to
check the messages and correspondence and bring to my attention anything
of importance that required action on my part."  He further
observed that it did not occur to him that General Short would not take
some reconnaissance and other defensive measures after receiving the
November 27 message-"he was an experienced commander and it never
entered my mind that he would not take such action."  In the course
of counsel's examination reference was made to the following comments by
Secretary Stimson with respect to the investigation conducted by the
Army of the Pearl Harbor disaster: 
"Again, as I have pointed out, General Short, in response to a message
which had been sent out containing a warning of possible hostilities and
a request for a report of actions, had sent a message to the War
Department which was susceptible of the interpretation that he was on
the alert against sabotage only, and not on the alert against an air
raid or other hostile action.
"While this interpretation was not necessarily to be had from the
wording of his message, nevertheless, a keener sense of analysis and a
more incisive comparison of the messages exchanged, would have invited
further inquiry by the War Plans Division of General Short and his
failure to go on the necessary alert might well have been discovered.
"The Chief of this division and certain of his subordinates knew that a
report of he measures taken by General Short had been asked for. General
Short's reply was brought to the attention of the chief of the division.
A clear and satisfactory reply should have been required. This was not
done, and a more efficient functioning of the division would have
demanded that careful inquiry as to the meaning of General Short's
message be made and no room for ambiguity permitted."
General Gerow was asked if he felt the foregoing was a fair statement of
the situation. He replied: 
"Yes, sir; I do, and if there was any responsibility to be attached to
the War Department for any failure to send an inquiry to General Short,
the responsibility must rest on War Plans Division, and *I accept that
responsibility as Chief of War Plans Division*."
Upon being asked if it were not the function of the Chief of Staff and
the Secretary of War to follow up on General Short's report, General
Gerow stated: 
"No, sir, I was a staff adviser to the Chief of Staff, and I had a group
of 48 officers to assist me. It was my responsibility to see that those
messages were checked, and if an inquiry was necessary, the War Plans
Division should have drafted such an inquiry and presented it to the
Chief of Staff for approval. As I said, I was chief of that division,
and it was my responsibility."
 Committee record, p. 2717.
 Id., at pp. 2719, 2720.
 Id., at pp. 2727, 2728. See also committee exhibit No. 167.
 Committee record pp. 2726-2729. In the course of Committee
examination of General Marshall the following questions were propounded
and answers were given:
Question: "Well, a large number of people saw it (the Short reply)?
General Gerow saw it and General Gerow testified here that when he saw
it he thought first that it was a response to a telegram sent out by G-2
relating to sabotage and when his attention was called to the fact, when
I asked counsel to ask him some further questions and his attention was
called to the fact that this was a direct response to your telegram No.
472 of the 27th and was addressed to the Chief of Staff, he then changed
his position and said, 'I as Chief of Operations or Chief of War Plans
assume full responsibility.'
"Now, I think it is only fair, General Marshall, in the conduct of this
examination in ascertaining the facts to find out whether or not, just
as General Gerow testified here, whether you assume the same
responsibility that he did?"
Answer: "I said earlier in this hearing, Mr. Keefe, in relation to the
very thing you are talking about, when I was questioned in regard to
General Gerow's statement, that I thought there was a difference; that
he had a direct responsibility and I had the full responsibility. Is
that an answer to your questions?"
Question: "He had a direct responsibility?"
Answer: "And I had the full responsibility."
Question: "And you had the full responsibility. Well, just what do you
mean by that?"
Answer: "His was in concern to the handling of the details of the matter
and he had a responsibility there. I am responsible for what the
General Staff did or did not do."
See Committee Record, pp. 3727, 3728.
204 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
As earlier pointed out, the War Plans Division had the duty of issuing
operational orders and directives; it directed an order to General Short
on November 27, instructing him to report measures taken; it failed
properly to supervise the report submitted by the commanding general
pursuant to direction. General Gerow, the head of the War Plans
Division, saw the report of measures taken in the Hawaiian Department
and presumed it was in response to a dispatch from Military Intelligence
warning of the likelihood of subversive activities. This is not a
tenable premise, however, inasmuch as the report by General Short was
addressed to the Chief of Staff and was therefore a reply to the warning
of November 27, signed "Marshall"; a reply to the message concerning
subversive activities would not have been addressed to the Chief of
Staff unless the latter had signed the message, which was not the case.
 Furthermore, the reference by General Short to the number of the
message to which he was replying necessarily entailed calling from file
the original outgoing dispatch in the event there was any doubt or
presumptions necessary in gauging to what the commanding general's
report was responsive. Knowing that a reply from General Short had been
called for, it was incumbent upon the War Plans Division to follow
closely the receipt of such reply and to insure that the action taken
was in accordance with that desired. While the reply from General Short
was ambiguous and misleading, it was nevertheless the duty of War Plans
to require a clear and unequivocal response. By its sheer brevity and
lack of detail alone, the report should have suggested the possibility
that the official mandate had not been adequately implemented.
The supervision by the War Plans Division in this instance was slipshod.
General Gerow, as head of the Division, must bear his share of
responsibility for this serious error, a responsibility which he has
unhesitatingly assumed. The primary responsibility, however, rests with
the appropriate subordinates of General Gerow who had the duty and
responsibility for supervision of details. 
THE "BERLIN MESSAGE"
An intercepted message from Tokyo to Berlin dated November 30, 1941
(translated December 1) follows: 
"The conversations begun between Tokyo and Washington last April during
the administration of the former cabinet, in spite of the sincere
efforts of the Imperial Government, now stand ruptured-broken. (I am
sending you an outline of developments in separate message #986) In the
face of this, our Empire faces a grave situation and must act with
determination. Will Your Honor, therefore, immediately interview
Chancellor HITLER and Foreign Minister RIBBENTROP and confidentially
communicate to them a summary of the developments. *Say to them that
lately England and the United States have taken a provocative attitude,
both of them. Say that they are planning to move military forces into
various places in East Asia and that we will inevitably have to counter
by also moving troops. Say very secretly to them that there is extreme
danger that war may suddenly break out between the Anglo-Saxon nations
and Japan through some clash of arms and add that the time of the
breaking out of this war may come quicker than anyone dreams*."
 Id., at pp. 2721-2724.
 See section "Nature of Responsibilities," infra.
 Dispatch No. 985, committee exhibit No. 1, p. 204.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 205
Another message of the same date from Tokyo to Berlin read, in part:
"Judging from the course of the negotiations that have been going on, we
first came to loggerheads when the United States, in keeping with its
traditional ideological tendency of managing international relations,
re-emphasized her fundamental reliance upon this traditional policy in
the conversations carried on between the United States and England in
the Atlantic Ocean. The motive of the United States in all this was
brought out by her desire to prevent the establishment of a new order by
Japan, Germany, and Italy in Europe and in the Far East (that is to say,
the aims of the Tri-Partite Alliance). As long as the Empire of Japan
was in alliance with Germany and Italy, there could be no maintenance of
friendly relations between Japan and the United States was the stand
they took. From this point of view, they began to demonstrate a tendency
to demand the divorce of the Imperial Government from the Tri-Partite
Alliance. This was brought out at the last meeting. *That is to say that
it has only been in the negotiations of the last few days that it has
become gradually more and more clear that the Imperial Government could
no longer continue negotiations with the United States. It became clear,
too, that a continuation of negotiations would inevitably be detrimental
to our cause*."
And again: 
"The proposal presented by the United States on the 26th made this
attitude of theirs clearer than ever. In it there is one insulting
clause which says that no matter what treaty either party enters into
with a third power it will not be interpreted as having any bearing upon
the basic object of this treaty, namely the maintenance of peace in the
Pacific. This means specifically the Three-Power Pact. It means that in
case the United States enters the European war at any time the Japanese
Empire will not be allowed to give assistance to Germany and Italy. It
is clearly a trick. *This clause alone, let alone others, makes it
impossible to find any basis in the American proposal for negotiations*.
What is more, before the United States brought forth this plan, they
conferred with England, Australia the Netherlands, and China-they did so
repeatedly. *Therefore, it is clear that the United States is now in
collusion with those nations and has decided to regard Japan, along with
Germany and Italy, as an enemy*."
This valuable intelligence added to the total of information pointing to
the mounting tenseness of relations but does not materially add to that
which was supplied our Hawaiian outpost in the warnings of November 27,
insofar as the prime duties of the commanders there were concerned.
These messages merely confirmed the conclusions already voiced three
days earlier to the outpost commanders that war was imminent; that
negotiations had ceased to all practical purposes; that hostile action
was possible at any moment.
CODE DESTRUCTION INTELLIGENCE
As has already been observed, Admiral Kimmel was advised by the Navy
Department concerning the intercepted messages relating to the
destruction of codes in various Japanese diplomatic establishments.
 While Admiral Kimmel failed to supply General Short this
intelligence it is apparent that the commanding general otherwise
obtained substantially the equivalent of this information. He was not,
however, supplied such information directly by the War Department.
In explaining the reason for the Army's not sending the code destruction
intelligence to Hawaii, General Miles testified: 
"The main reason was that the code experts apparently agreed, at least
the Navy was particularly strong on the point, that their code was much
 Dispatch No. 986, committee exhibit No. 1, pp. 205-206.
 Id., at p. 206.
 See Part III, supra; also committee exhibit No. 37. For the
original intercepted messages concerning destruction of codes see
committee exhibit No. 1, pp. 209, 215, 216, 236, 249, among others.
 Committee record, p. 2221.
206 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
than ours. It was obviously, of course, of great importance in security
that a message be sent in only one code and not two and we had every
reason to believe or thought we did, that a Navy message to Hawaii would
be promptly transmitted to the Army authorities there."
The reason advanced by General Miles is consistent with the general
practice of the Army not to distribute Magic to field commanders for
security reasons.  While it appears that in some instances the Navy
in Hawaii was specifically advised to inform the Army of messages
received, the failure to instruct Admiral Kimmel to so inform General
Short concerning the Japanese destruction of codes did not by inference
or otherwise indicate that this intelligence should not be supplied the
Army. Considering that Hawaii was a command by mutual cooperation, the
War Department was properly privileged to take for granted that there
was a full exchange of information between the Army and Navy commanders,
 particularly after General Short had specifically stated in his
reply to the Department's warning of November 27 that he had established
*liaison with the Navy*.
The overwhelming preponderance of testimony by Army and Navy experts is
to the effect that the destruction of codes and confidential documents
under the circumstances prevailing in early December of 1941 meant war
from a military standpoint.  It is clear that Washington adequately
discharged its responsibility in transmitting this information to
Hawaii. With the failure, however, of Admiral Kimmel to read into this
intelligence what it is agreed should have been self-evident to him, it
is believed that in contemplation of the future the intelligence as well
as the departmental appraisal and estimate thereof should be supplied
field commanders. 
THE MCCOLLUM DISPATCH
The Navy Department in Washington had available substantially the
information which was in the possession of Admiral Kimmel with respect
to radio intelligence concerning the location and movements of Japanese
vessels. It knew, as did Admiral Kimmel, that substantial carrier units
of the Japanese Fleet could not be located. This information was
carefully considered by the Office of Naval Intelligence.  Capt.
Arthur McCollum, Chief of the Far Eastern Section of Naval Intelligence,
was particularly charged with handling radio intelligence material and
it was he who drafted the dispatch of November 24,
 See section "The 'Magic' ", supra.
 See committee record, pp. 2220-2224. Secretary Stimson stated: "It
was the rule that all such information should be exchanged between the
Army and Navy at Pearl Harbor, and the War Department had a right to
believe that this information communicated to Admiral Kimmel was also
available to General Short." See statement of Secretary Stimson with
respect to Army Pearl Harbor Board's report, committee exhibit No. 157.
 Admiral Turner, for example stated: " * * * the destruction of
codes in that manner and in those places in my mind and experience is a
definite and sure indication of war with the nations in whose capitals
or other places those codes are destroyed. * * * It indicates war within
two or three days." Committee record, pp. 5294, 5295.
It is to be noted that Washington did not minimize the significance of
the code destruction intelligence despite the fact there were
indications this move by Tokyo might be in anticipation of the
possibility that the United States would close down her consulates. The
following intercepted dispatch of December 3, 1941, from Washington to
Tokyo is of pertinence in this regard: "*If we continue to increase our
forces in French Indo-China, it is expected that the United States will
close up our Consulates, therefore consideration should be given to
steps to be taken in connection with the evacuation of the Consuls*."
Committee exhibit No. 1, p. 227.
 Before the Roberts Commission, Admiral Kimmel said: " * * * the
Department sent me a message that these codes were being burned, and I
feel, while that was good information, that they might very well have
enlarged somewhat on what they believed it meant, I didn't draw the
proper answer, I admit that. I admit that I was wrong. Nobody can
gainsay the fact that if I had drawn different conclusion from what I
got we might have changed things. Nevertheless, such a dispatch as that,
with no amplification, was not near as valuable as it would have been if
they had amplified and drawn the conclusions. See Roberts Commission
record, p. 589.
 See committee record, pp. 9119, 9120.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 207
1941,  to the commander in chief of the Asiatic Fleet, a copy of
which as sent Admiral Kimmel for information, instructing that the
commandant of the Sixteenth Naval District serve in effect as a
clearinghouse for data concerning Japanese naval movements inasmuch as
the information obtainable in the Philippine area was considered Lost
Captain McCollum prepared a memorandum dated December 1, 1941, pointing
out that Japanese "service radio calls for units afloat were changed at
0000, 1 December 1941".  He also prepared another memorandum
bearing the same date summarizing the generally critical situation with
respect to Japan.  At a meeting attended by Admirals Stark,
Ingersoll, Turner and Wilkinson, among others, in the Navy Department on
the morning of December 1, Captain McCollum personally read his
memorandum last-mentioned, pointing out the imminence of war or rupture
of diplomatic relations. He requested information as to whether the
fleets in the Pacific had been adequately alerted and testified: "I was
given a categorical assurance by both Admiral Stark and Admiral Turner
that dispatches fully alerting the fleets and placing them on a war
basis had been sent." It is significant that at this time neither
Admiral Wilkinson nor Captain McCollum had knowledge of the "war
warning" message to Admiral Kimmel. 
About December 4, 1941, Captain McCollum prepared a dispatch designed to
alert naval outposts, based in part on his memorandum of December 1
outlining the critical situation in the Far East. He testified: 
"Captain McCollum. * * * I was put in the rather difficult position of
not personally knowing what had been sent out to the fleet. Possibly it
was none my business. As I pointed out to you, the basis of this
memorandum-the formation it was based on-was actually as of about the
28th of November. As time went on we had sent out dispatches to our
naval attaches in Tokyo Peiping, Bangkok, and Shanghai to destroy all of
their codes, and to report by the use of a code word, and those codes
"We were getting reports from our observers of the Japanese task force
which was moving down the Kra Peninsula. Our planes were sighting forces
moving; our submarines were trailing them. We had some little
information in addition. I still did not know what had been sent to the
"I drafted a rather brief dispatch, outlining the information pretty
much as is this memorandum, but greatly condensed. I went further and
stated that we felt everything pointed to an imminent outbreak of
hostilities between Japan and the United States. That dispatch was taken
by me to my Chief, Captain Hurd, and together we went in to see Admiral
Wilkinson. We did it in view of the fact at the function of evaluation
of intelligence; that is, the drawing of inferences therefrom, had been
transferred over to be a function of the War Plans Division. I was
directed to take that dispatch and present it for the consideration of
Admiral Turner, the Director of the War Plans Division, which I did.
"Admiral Turner read the dispatch over. He then made a number of
corrections in it, striking out all except the information parts of it,
more or less, and then showed me for the first time the dispatch which
he had sent on the 27th which I believe is referred to as the "war
warning" dispatch, and the one which was sent, I believe, on the 24th-
"COUNSEL. That is right.
"Captain MCCOLLUM (continuing). Which preceded that dispatch, and said
did not I think that was enough. I said, "Well, good gosh, you put in
the words 'war warning'. I do not know what could be plainer than that,
but, nevertheless I would like to see mine go too."
 Dispatch No. 242239, committee exhibit No. 37, p. 33.
 Committee exhibit No. 85.
 Id., No. 81.
 See testimony of Captain McCollum, committee record, p. 9112-9123;
also testimony of Admiral Wilkinson.
 Committee record, pp. 9130-9134.
208 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
"He said, "Well, if you want to send it, you either send it the way I
corrected it or take it back to Wilkinson and we will argue about it" or
words to that effect
"I cannot presume to remember precisely.
"I took it back to Admiral Wilkinson and discussed it with him, and he
said "Leave it here with me for a while," and that is all.
"Now, I would like it understood that merely because this was prepared
on a dispatch blank in no sense means it was an official dispatch. It
was merely my recommendation to my superiors which they were privileged
to throw in the wastebasket, I imagine. It was in no sense a part of the
official file. It is nothing other than a recommendation for the
dispatch officer. I have written dozens of dispatches for the admiral,
and he could either throw them away, or use them. There is no record
kept of that sort of thing."
Admiral Turner's testimony with respect to the foregoing incident is as
"COUNSEL. There is some evidence here that Captain McCollum sometime
between the 1st of December and the 7th of December indicated or showed
a view that some further warning ought to be sent to Pearl Harbor. Do
you know anything about that?
"Admiral TURNER. Yes, sir, and I was here yesterday when Senator
Ferguson read my testimony from the Navy Court of Inquiry, and I was a
little confused in that. I had nothing to refer to, I had not received
any warning of more than 2 or 3 days about the proceedings and since
that time in going over it myself and thinking about it I arrived at
what I believe is a correct statement on that subject.
"From time to time Captain McCollum would come to me with drafts of
memoranda to the CNO concerning the situation and we would discuss them.
I think that he had such a memorandum about the 1st of December but I do
not believe that it was intended to go out as a dispatch but merely for
the information of the Chief of Naval Operations. Now, I have not seen
such a memorandum but I have a recollection of that.
"Now, about the 1st or 2d of December-and this is sure, I am completely
sure of this, I remember it very distinctly-about the 1st or 2d of
December Commander McCollum came into my office and handed me a proposed
dispatch written on one sheet of paper and approximately the length of
the dispatch of November 27 which he proposed that the Chief of Naval
Operations send out to the fleets concerning the imminence of war. It
covered the same ground approximately as the CNO dispatches of the 24th
"Now, I know that Admiral Wilkinson and some other officers in ONI had
seen those two dispatches and I asked McCollum if he had seen them.
"COUNSEL. YOU mean seen the officers or seen the dispatches?
"Admiral TURNER. If he had seen the two dispatches of the 24th and 27th,
and he said "No." So I pulled the two dispatches out and handed them to
him and said, "Well, read these over and then see if you think your
dispatch ought to go."
"He sat down and read them over and handed them back to me and he said,
"No" and tore up his proposed dispatch. It had the same general coverage
but was not as specific as these two messages.
"COUNSEL. Not as specific as those two that were sent?
"Admiral TURNER. Not quite; no, sir.
"COUNSEL. Can you give us any information from your recollection as to
what his proposed dispatch contained?
"Admiral TURNER. I agreed with it entirely, he and I agreed on the
situation and he was afraid that a warning had not been sent out and he
had prepared himself a dispatch which he wanted to send out to the
commander in chief. I did not ask him not to send it but I just merely
said, "See if you think it ought to go after you read these dispatches"
and he read the two dispatches and he said, "No." He said, "That is
Admiral Wilkinson had no independent recollection of the event attending
the McCollum dispatch. 
It is regarded as extremely regrettable that the proposed dispatch of
Captain McCollum is not in existence in order that an objective estimate
of its contents might be made. Captain Safford in testifying before
Admiral Hart, stated: 
 Id., at pp. 5217-5219.
 Id., at pp. 4655-4658.
 Hart inquiry record, p. 360.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 209
"* * * On the 4th of December 1941, Commander McCollum drafted a long
warning message to the Commanders in Chief of the Asiatic and Pacific
Fleets, summarizing significant events up to that date, quoting the
"Winds Message," and ending with the positive warning that war was
imminent. Admiral Wilkinson approved this message and discussed it with
Admiral Noyes in my presence. I was given the message to read after
Admiral Noyes read it, and saw it at about three p. m., Washington time,
on December 4, 1941. Admiral Wilkinson asked, "What do you think of the
message?" Admiral Noyes replied "I think it is an insult to the
intelligence of the Commander in Chief." Admiral Wilkinson stated, "I do
not agree with you. Admiral Kimmel is a very busy and had with a lot of
things on his mind, and he may not see the picture as clearly as you and
I do. I think it only fair to the Commander in Chief that he be given
this warning and I intend to see it if I can get it released by the
front office." Admiral Wilkinson then left and I left, a few minutes
later. At the time of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, I thought
that this warning message had been sent, and did not realize until two
years later, when I studied the Roberts report very carefully, that
McCollum's message had not been sent."
The statement by Captain Safford that the proposed dispatch referred to
an implementation of the "winds code" was contradicted by Captain
McCollum who categorically testified that his dispatch contained no
reference to a winds execute message and that, in fact, his knowledge no
such message had been received.  As elsewhere pointed out, the
conclusion is made from all of the evidence that no execution message
based on the "winds code" was ever received in the War or Navy
Departments prior to December 7.
The fact that Admiral Kimmel already possessed the vital intelligence
with respect to the "lost" Japanese carriers and the unusual change in
service calls on December 1 would necessarily have conditioned any
consideration of an additional warning to him based hereon. However,
considering all of the significant intelligence available around
December 1, Captain McCollum, not knowing of the warning dispatches,
prepared at sometime between December 1 and 4 an alerting message which
he felt should have been dispatched. Admiral Turner looked with disfavor
on this message for the reason hat he felt it added nothing to what had
already been supplied the fleet and the further fact that he regarded
responsible commanders as adequately alerted, an attitude which
prevailed throughout the War and Navy Departments. Captain McCollum,
too, regarded the war warning" of November 27 as fully adequate but
testified he would also "like" to see his warning transmitted. There is
no evidence before the Committee indicating with any degree of accuracy
the contents of the so-called McCollum dispatch to assist in determining
whether it may have added anything to the warning dispatches of November
27 to the Hawaiian commanders. 
EVENTS OF DECEMBER 6 AND 7, 1941
An extensive amount of testimony has been taken concerning the events of
December 6 and 7, 1941, attending the interception, distribution, and
action taken with respect to four diplomatic dispatches from Japan to
her Washington ambassadors. These four dispatches, each of which will
elsewhere be discussed fully, were:
(1) The so-called "Pilot Message," No. 901, on December 6 advising that
a long 14-part memorandum for the United States
 Committee record, p. 9134.
 This same observation would apply with respect to a warning
dispatch said to have been prepared a the War Department by Colonel Otis
K. Sadtler which allegedly was not sent for the reason that military
outposts were regarded as adequately alerted. The facts concerning the
"Sadtler message" are seriously in doubt.
210 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
was to be sent as a result of the American proposal of November 26 and
that instructions concerning the time of presentation to the United
States would be provided in a separate message. 
(2) The 14-part memorandum, message No. 902 (transmitted in English) to
be presented to the Government of the United States. The first thirteen
parts were intercepted on December 6 and the fourteenth part on the
morning of December 7. 
(3) The message, No. 907, intercepted on December 7, directing the
Japanese Ambassador to submit the 14-part memorandum to the United
States at 1 p. m., December 7, Washington time. 
(4) Message No. 910, intercepted on December 7, directing that the
remaining cipher machine (in the Japanese Washington Embassy) be
destroyed along with all code machines and that similar disposition be
made of secret documents. 
Considering the time that has elapsed there has been an understandable
amount of discrepancy with respect to the recollection of the
participants as to the exact time of handling the foregoing messages in
Washington. However, as subsequently will appear, composite
consideration of all the testimony tends to present a reasonably
satisfactory picture. It is to be recalled that in December of 1941 the
Army and Navy cryptographic units were dividing the work incident to
decoding and translating Japanese diplomatic messages, the Magic, with
the Army generally assuming responsibility for messages bearing even
dates of the month and the Navy, the odd dates.  Immediately upon
decoding and translating messages both the War and Navy Departments each
received copies. It was the responsibility of the Army to make
distribution of Magic within the War Department and to the Secretary of
State, while the Navy was responsible for distribution within the Navy
Department and to the White House.
THE PILOT MESSAGE
At 6:56 a. m. on December 6 there was filed in Tokyo and between 7:15
and 7:20 a. m. intercepted by a Navy monitoring station  a dispatch
that has come to be known as the "Pilot Message": 
"1. The Government has deliberated deeply on the American proposal of
the 26th of November and as a result we have drawn up a memorandum for
the United States contained in my separate message #902 (in English).
"2. This separate message is a very long one. *I will send it in
fourteen parts and I imagine you will receive it tomorrow. However, I am
not sure. The situation is extremely delicate, and when you receive it I
want you to please keep it secret for the time being*.
"3. Concerning the time of presenting this memorandum to the United
States, I will wire you in a separate message. However, I want you in
the meantime to put in nicely drafted form and make every preparation to
present it to the Americans just as soon as you receive instructions."
A teletype sheet containing this message in Japanese code was received
by the Army from the Navy at 12:05 p. m., December 6.  There is no
documentary evidence available as to the exact time of decoding,
translating, and typing of the pilot message by the Army
 Committee exhibit No. 1, pp. 238, 239
 Id., at pp. 239-245.
 Id., at p. 248.
 Id., at p. 249.
 See Army Pearl Harbor Board record, p. 122.
 See committee exhibit No. 41.
 Committee exhibit No. 1, pp. 238, 239.
 Id., No. 41.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 211
apart from the fact that these operations were completed on December
Capt. Alwyn D. Kramer was primarily responsible for distribution of
Magic on behalf of the Navy. He initially testified before the committee
that he was quite certain the pilot message was contained in the folder
also containing the first 13 parts of the 14-part memorandum which were
distributed by him during the evening of December 6.  Captain
Kramer subsequently modified this testimony, based on a study of records
available in the Navy Department relating to the Magic materials. He
"Yesterday afternoon when being questioned concerning this so-called
pilot message I made the statement that I believed that the pilot
message had arrived sometime late Saturday afternoon, 6 December 1941,
or Saturday evening, and that I believed it was distributed Saturday
evening with the Japanese note and other papers. I find as a result of
my study last night that *the pilot message was not disseminated, at
least in the Navy, until Sunday morning subsequent to 10 o'clock*, at
the time when the so-called hidden-word message and a number of other
short messages, including the 1 o'clock message, were disseminated."
It would seem in consequence, from the best testimony available, hat no
distribution was made of the pilot message in the Navy Department or to
the White House until the morning of December 7. However, it is to be
noted that Admiral Wilkinson testified he saw the pilot message before
leaving the Navy Department on December 6. 
It appears on the other hand that distribution of the message in the War
Department and to the State Department was made during the afternoon of
December 6. Col. Rufus Bratton, who was responsible for distribution of
Magic by the Army, testified: 
"Distribution of the so-called pilot message was made that afternoon
(December 6) about 3 o'clock. I do not now recall whether I did it in
person or whether one of my assistants did it, but I do recall
discussing the subject both with General Miles and General Gerow
Saturday afternoon. [273a]"
The military significance of the pilot message will be treated in
connection with the discussion of the first 13 parts of the 14-part
THE 14-PART MEMORANDUM
*First 13 Parts*
The first 13 parts of the 14-part memorandum were received in the Navy
Department between 11:49 a. m. and 2:51 p. m. on December 6.  They
had been decoded and typed in the Navy Department and were ready for
distribution by approximately 9 p. m. on that late. Copies were
thereupon delivered to the War Department. 
Captain Kramer in making distribution of this material on behalf of the
Navy arrived at the White House between 9:30 and 10 p. m., delivering
the first 13 parts to Commander Schulz,  an assistant to Admiral
Beardall,  the President's naval aide, with the request they be
given the President at the earliest possible moment. Commander Schulz
did thereafter deliver the messages to the President who along
 Committee record, p. 10677.
 Id., at p. 10739.
 Id., at p. 4659.
 Id., pp. 12049, 12050.
[273a] The evidence tends to indicate some doubt, however, as to whether
the "Pilot Message" was seen by General Marshall on December 6. See
Committee record, p. 3472.
 Committee exhibit No. 41.
 See Army Pearl Harbor Board (top secret) record, pp. 152-171.
 Lt. (now Commander) Lester Robert Schulz.
 Admiral John R. Beardall.
212 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
with Mr. Harry Hopkins read their contents. Kramer then proceeded to the
Wardman Park Hotel where delivery was made to Secretary Knox, who read
the dispatches. He then went to the home of Admiral Wilkinson where a
dinner party was in progress attended by Admiral Beardall, General
Miles, and of course, Admiral Wilkinson, among others. The first 13
parts were read by these officers.  Kramer returned to the Navy
Department at approximately 1 a. m. and thereafter retired upon seeing
that the fourteenth part of the Japanese memorandum had not been
received.  Copies of the first 13 parts were delivered on the
evening of December 6 by an unidentified representative or
representatives of the Navy Department to Admirals Ingersoll and Turner
at their homes. 
The testimony with respect to distribution of the 13 parts by the, Army
is conflicting, the weight of the evidence indicating, however, that no
distribution was made to authorized recipients in the War Department on
December 6. The evidence is in dispute as to whether they were delivered
to a watch officer at the State Department on the evening of that date.
The evidence indicates that the first 13 parts were read on the evening
of December 6, by, particularly, the President, Mr. Harry Hopkins,
Secretary Knox, Admiral Ingersoll, Admiral Turner, Admiral Wilkinson,
Admiral Beardall, General Miles, Captain Kramer, and Colonel Bratton
 It is concluded from the evidence of record that the message was
not seen by Secretary Hull, Secretary Stimson, General Marshall, Admiral
Stark, or General Gerow  prior to the morning of December 7.
*Analysts and Significance of First 13 Parts Proper*
In view of the conflicting interpretations that have been placed o the
first 13 parts of the 14-part memorandum, they are being set forth in
their entirety: 
 Committee record, pp. 4663-4666.
 Id., at pp. 10451 et seq.
 Id., at pp. 5097 11295.
[280a] Colonel Bratton testified that the last of the 13 parts came into
his office some time between 9 and 1 o'clock that night, and that he was
in his office when the last of the 13 parts came in (committee record
12049). He further testified that he personally delivered the 13 parts
to the night duty officer at the State Department some time after 10
o'clock that night, telling the duty officer that it was a "highly
important message as far as the Secretary of State was concerned" and
that it should be sent out to Secretary Hull's quarters, which he was
assured would be done committee record 12052-12053). This testimony is
directly contrary to the affidavit of Col. Clyde Dusenbury, then Colonel
Bratton's chief assistant, in the Clausen investigation. In his
affidavit, Colonel Dusenbury stated that he specifically recalled the
intercepted message in question and that "it started coming in the night
of 6 December 1941 when I was on duty. Colonel Bratton was also on duty
then and saw the message coming in and he remained until about half of
it had been received. Thereupon he left and went home at about 9 p. m. I
stayed so he could go home and sleep. I waited for the remainder. The
fourteenth part, being the final part of the message, was received about
12 that night. Thereupon I left and went home. I returned the next
morning *to begin the distribution of this intercept consisting of the
fourteen parts and began the distribution of the fourteen parts
comprising this intercept* about 9 a. m. on 7 December 1941 and finished
with the delivery to the State Department as Kurusu and Nomura were
meeting with the Secretary of State. When I delivered the copy for OPD
that morning I handed it to then Col. Thomas D. Handy, who, upon reading
it, said to me: "This means war," or words to that effect. *None of
these parts comprising this intercept was delivered before the morning
of 7 December 1941* because the first half had been received while
Colonel Bratton was on duty and he had seen this and had not had it
delivered that night" (Clausen Investigation committee exhibit No. 148,
Colonel Dusenbury's statements in his affidavit are in accord with the
testimony of Gen. Sherman Miles, then Chief of the Military Intelligence
Division and the superior officer of Colonel Bratton and Colonel
Dusenbury, who stated that Secretary Hull, Secretary Stimson, and the
others on the War Department's "magic" distribution list received on
December 6 all intercepted Japanese messages that were translated that
day up to midnight "*except the first 13 parts of the 14-part message*"
(committee record 4123-4124).
 Captain McCollum is indicated to have seen the first 6 or 7 parts
before leaving his office on December 6. Committee record, pp. 9232,
 See committee record, p. 2741.
 Committee exhibit No. 1, pp. 239-245.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 213
1. The Government of Japan, prompted by a genuine desire to come to an
amicable understanding with the Government of the United States in order
that the two countries by their joint efforts may secure the peace of
the Pacific area and thereby contribute toward the realization of world
peace, has continued negotiations with the utmost sincerity since April
last with the Government of the United States regarding the adjustment
and advancement of Japanese-American relations and the stabilization of
the Pacific area.
The Japanese Government has the honor to state frankly its views,
concerning the claims the American Government has persistently
maintained as well as the measures the United States and Great Britain
have taken toward Japan during these eight months.
2. It is the immutable policy of the Japanese Government to insure the
stability of East Asia and to promote world peace, and thereby to enable
all nations to find each its proper place in the world.
Ever since the China Affair broke out owing to the failure on the part
of China to comprehend Japan's true intentions, the Japanese Government
has striven for the restoration of peace and it has consistently exerted
its best efforts to prevent the extension of war-like disturbances. It
was also to that end that in September last year Japan concluded the Tri
Partite Pact with Germany and Italy.
(Part 2 of 14)
However, both the United States and Great Britain have resorted to every
possible measure to assist the Chungking regime so as to obstruct the
establishment of a general peace between Japan and China, interfering
with Japan's constructive endeavours toward the stabilization of East
Asia, exerting pressure on The Netherlands East Indies, or menacing
French Indo-China, they have attempted to frustrate Japan's aspiration
to realize the ideal of common prosperity in cooperation with these
regions. Furthermore, when Japan in accordance with its protocol with
France took measures of joint defense of French Indo-China, both
American and British governments, willfully misinterpreted it as a
threat to their own possession and inducing the Netherlands government
to follow suit, they enforced the assets freezing order, thus severing
economic relations with Japan. While manifesting thus an obviously
hostile attitude, these countries have strengthened their military
preparations perfecting an encirclement of Japan, and have brought about
a situation which endangers the very existence of the empire.
(Part 3 of 14)
Nevertheless, facilitate a speedy settlement, the Premier of Japan
proposed, in August last, to meet the President of the United States for
a discussion of important problems between the two countries covering
the entire Pacific area. However, while accepting in principle the
Japanese proposal, insisted that the meeting should take place after an
agreement of view had been reached on fundamental -(75 letters garbled)-
The Japanese government submitted a proposal based on the formula
proposed by the American government, taking fully into consideration
past American claims and also incorporating Japanese views. Repeated
discussions proved of no avail in producing readily an agreement of
view. The present cabinet, therefore, submitted a revised proposal,
moderating still further the Japanese claims regarding the principal
points of difficulty in the negotiation and endeavoured strenuously to
reach a settlement. But the American government, adhering steadfastly to
its original proposal failed to display in the slightest degree a spirit
of conciliation. The negotiation made no progress.
(Part 4 of 14)
Thereupon, the Japanese Government, with a view to doing its utmost for
averting a crisis in Japanese-American relations, submitted on November
20th still another proposal in order to arrive at an equitable solution
of the more essential and urgent questions which, simplifying its
previous proposal, stipulated the following points:
(1) The Governments of Japan and the United States undertake not to
dispatch armed forces into any of the regions, excepting French Indo-
China, in the Southeastern Asia and the Southern Pacific area.
214 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
(2) Both Governments shall cooperate with a view to securing the
acquisition in the Netherlands East Indies of those goods and
commodities of which the two countries are in need.
(3) Both Governments mutually undertake to restore commercial relations
to those prevailing prior to the freezing of assets.
The Government of the United States shall supply Japan the required
quantity of oil.
(4) The Government of the United States undertakes not to resort to
measures and actions prejudicial to the endeavours for the restoration
of general peace between Japan and China.
(5) The Japanese Government undertakes to withdraw troops now stationed
in French Indo-China upon either the restoration of peace between Japan
and China or the establishment of an equitable peace in the Pacific
area; and it is prepared to remove the Japanese troops in the southern
part of French Indo-China to the northern part upon the conclusion of
the present agreement.
(Part 5 of 14)
As regards China, the Japanese Government, while expressing its
readiness to accept the offer of the President of the United States to
act as "Introducer" of peace between Japan and China as was previously
suggested, asked for an undertaking on the part of the United States to
do nothing prejudicial to the restoration of Sino-Japanese peace when
the two parties have commenced direct negotiations.
The American government not only rejected the above-mentioned new
proposal, but made known its intention to continue its aid to Chiang
Kai-shek; and in spite of its suggestion mentioned above, withdrew the
offer of the President to act as the so called "Introducer" of peace
between Japan and China, pleading that time was not yet ripe for it.
Finally, on November 26th, in an attitude to impose upon the Japanese
government those principles it has persistently maintained, the American
government made a proposal totally ignoring Japanese claims, which is a
source of profound regret to the Japanese Government.
(Part 6 of 14)
4. From the beginning of the present negotiation the Japanese Government
has always maintained an attitude of fairness and moderation, and did
its best to reach a settlement, for which it made all possible
concessions often in spite of great difficulties.
As for the China question which constituted an important subject of the
negotiation, the Japanese Government showed a most conciliatory
As for the principle of Non-Discrimination in International Commerce,
advocated by the American Government, the Japanese Government expressed
its desire to see the said principle applied throughout the world, and
declared that along with the actual Practice of this principle in the
world, the Japanese Government would endeavor to apply the same in the
Pacific area, including China, and made it clear that Japan had no
intention of excluding from China economic activities of third powers
pursued on an equitable basis.
Furthermore, as regards the question of withdrawing troops from French
Indo-China, the Japanese government even volunteered, as mentioned
above, to carry out an immediate evacuation of troops from Southern
French Indo-China as a measure of easing the situation.
(Part 7 of 14)
It is presumed that the spirit of conciliation exhibited to the utmost
degree by the Japanese Government in all these matters is fully
appreciated by the American government.
On the other hand, the American government, always holding fast to
theories in disregard of realities, and refusing to yield an inch on its
impractical principles, caused undue delays in the negotiation. It is
difficult to understand this attitude of the American government and the
Japanese government desires to call the attention of the American
government especially to the following points:
1. The American government advocates in the name of world peace those
principles favorable to it and urges upon the Japanese government the
acceptance thereof. The peace of the world may be brought about only by
discovering a mutually acceptable formula through recognition of the
reality of the situation and mutual appreciation of one another's
position. An attitude such as ignores realities and imposes one's
selfish views upon others will scarcely serve the purpose of
facilitating the consummation of negotiations.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 215
(Part 8 of 14)
Of the various principles put forward by the American government as a
basis of the Japanese-American agreement, there are some which the
Japanese government is ready to accept in principle, but in view of the
world's actual conditions, it seems only a Utopian ideal, on the part of
the American government, to attempt to force their immediate adoption.
Again, the proposal to conclude a multilateral non-aggression pact
between Japan, the United States, Great Britain, China, the Soviet
Union, The Netherlands, and Thailand, which is patterned after the old
concept of collective security, is far removed from the realities of
The American proposal contains a stipulation which states: "Both
governments will agree that no agreement, which either has concluded
with any third powers, shall be interpreted by it in such a way as to
conflict with the fundamental purpose of this agreement, the
establishment and preservation of peace throughout the Pacific area." It
is presumed that the above provision has been proposed with a view to
restrain Japan from fulfilling its obligations under the Tripartite Pact
when the United States participates in the war in Europe, and, as such,
it cannot be accepted by the Japanese Government.
(Part 9 of 14)
The American Government, obsessed with its own views and opinions, may
be said to be scheming for the extension of the war. While it seeks, on
the one hand, to secure its rear by stabilizing the Pacific area, it is
engaged. On the other hand, in aiding Great Britain and preparing to
attack, in the name of self-defense, Germany and Italy, two powers that
are striving to establish a new order in Europe. Such a policy is
totally at variance with the many principles upon which the American
Government proposes to found the stability of the Pacific area through
3. Where as the American Government, under the principles it rigidly
upholds, objects to settling international issues through military
pressure, it is exercising in conjunction with Great Britain and other
nations pressure by economic power. Recourse to such pressure as a means
of dealing with international relations should be condemned as it is at
times more inhuman than military pressure.
(Part 10 of 14)
4. It is impossible not to reach the conclusion that the American
Government desires to maintain and strengthen, in collusion with Great
Britain and other powers, its dominant position it has hitherto occupied
not only in China but in other areas of East Asia. It is a fact of
history that one countr-(45 letters garbled or missing)- been compelled
to observe the status quo under the Anglo-American policy of
imperialistic exploitation and to sacrifice the -es to the prosperity of
the two nations. The Japanese Government cannot tolerate the
perpetuation of such a situation since it directly runs counter to
Japan's fundamental policy to enable all nations to enjoy each its
proper place in the world.
(Part 11 of 14)
The stipulation proposed by the American Government relative to French
Indo-China is a good exemplification of the above-mentioned American
policy. That the six countries,-Japan, the United States, Great Britain,
The Netherlands, China and Thailand,-excepting France, should undertake
among themselves to respect the territorial integrity and sovereignty of
French Indo-China and equality of treatment in trade and commerce would
be tantamount to placing that territory under the joint guarantee of the
governments of those six countries. Apart from the fact that such a
proposal totally ignores the position of France, it is unacceptable to
the Japanese government in that such an arrangement cannot but be
considered as an extension to French Indo-China of a system similar to
the n-(50 letters missed)-sible for the present predicament of East
(Part 12 of 14)
5. All the items demanded of Japan by the American government regarding
China such as wholesale evacuation of troops or unconditional
application of the principle of Non-Discrimination in International
Commerce ignore the actual conditions of China, and are calculated to
destroy Japan's position as the stabilizing factor of East Asia. The
attitude of the American government in demanding
216 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
Japan not to support militarily, politically or economically any regime
other than the regime at Chunking, disregarding thereby the existence of
the Nanking government, shatters the very basis of the present
negotiation. This demand of the American government falling, as it does,
in line with its above-mentioned refusal to cease from aiding the
Chunking regime, demonstrates clearly the intention of the American
government to obstruct the restoration of normal relations between Japan
and China and the return of peace to East Asia.
(Part 13 of 14)
5. In brief, the American proposal contains certain acceptable items
such as those concerning commerce, including the conclusion of a trade
agreement, mutual removal of the freezing restrictions, and
stabilization of the Yen and Dollar exchange, or the abolition of
extraterritorial rights in China. On the other hand, however, the
proposal in question ignores Japan's sacrifices in the four years of the
China Affair, menaces the empire's existence itself and disparages its
honour and prestige. *Therefore, viewed in its entirety, the Japanese
government regrets that it cannot accept the proposal as a basis of
6. The Japanese government, in its desire for an early conclusion of the
negotiation, proposed that simultaneously with the conclusion of the
Japanese-American negotiation, agreements be signed, with Great Britain
and other interested countries. The proposal was accepted by the
American government. However, since the American government has made the
proposal of November 26th as a result of frequent consultations with
Great Britain, Australia, The Netherlands and Chunking, ANDND* (probably
"and as") presumably by catering to the wishes of the Chungking regime
on the questions of CHTUAL YLOKMMTT** (probably "China, can but") be
concluded that. All these countries are at one with the United States in
ignoring Japan's position.
The foregoing message is a long and argumentative rehash of the
Japanese-American negotiations. The motives and proposals of the
Japanese Empire are clothed in language of the most blathering terms
whereas the purposes of the United States are assigned a base character.
The language employed in the first 13 parts is much stronger than had
theretofore been employed by Japan in her proposals. In the thirteenth
part it is stated, "Therefore, viewed in its entirety, the Japanese
Government regrets that it cannot accept the proposal as a basis of
negotiation." Taken from its context this statement would indicate that
Japan is rejecting the November 26 note of our Government and would
possibly suggest that the current negotiations were to be broken off at
some time in the near future. But as pointed out by Admiral Wilkinson,
"It is one thing to break off negotiations and another thing to break
off diplomatic relations. The same negotiations, I believe, had been
broken off earlier and then resumed." 
Commander Schulz, who delivered the first 13 parts of the Japanese reply
to the President, testified that the President read the message and "Mr.
Hopkins then read the papers and handed them back to the President. The
President then turned toward Mr. Hopkins and said in substance-I am not
sure of the exact words, but in substance, '*This means war*'.  Mr.
Hopkins agreed and they discussed then for perhaps 5 minutes the
situation of the Japanese forces, that is, their deployment." 
 Committee record, p. 4668.
 Asked what his action would have been had he known of the
President's remark, General Marshall said: "I can't say. *I doubt if I
would have sent anything on that statement of the President at that
time*." Committee record, p. 13804.
Admiral Stark was asked: "* * * if you had known that the President did
say something in substance 'This means war,' about the 13-part message,
was there anything you would have done that night except to read the
message? Is there anything you could now tell us you would have done, in
the way of backsight or hindsight that you would have done that you did
He replied: "It would not be backsight or hindsight, because when I read
it on Sunday morning I saw nothing in it to cause me to take any further
action on it," Committee record, pp. 13912, 13913.
 Committee record, p. 12441.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 217
To the query as to whether he could recall what either the President or
Mr. Hopkins said, Commander Schulz testified as follows: 
"Commander SCHULZ. In substance I can. There are only a few words that I
in definitely say I am sure of, but the substance of it was that-I
believe Mr. Hopkins mentioned it first, that since war was imminent,
that the Japanese tended to strike when they were ready, at a moment
when all was most opportune for them-when all was most opportune for
that. That is, when their forces were most properly deployed for their
advantage. Indochina in particular was mentioned, because the Japanese
forces had already landed there and there were implications of where
they should move next.
"The President mentioned a message that he had sent to the Japanese
Emperor concerning the presence of Japanese troops in Indochina, in
effect requesting their withdrawal.
"Mr. Hopkins then expressed a view that since war was undoubtedly going
to be at the convenience of the Japanese it was too bad that we could
not strike e first blow and prevent any sort of surprise. The President
nodded and said, effect, "No we can't do that. We are a democracy and a
peaceful people. Then he raised his voice, and this much I remember
definitely. He said, "But we a good record."
"The impression that I got was that we would have to stand on that
record, we would not make the first overt move. We would have to wait
until it came.
"During this discussion there was no mention of Pearl Harbor. The only
geographic name I recall was Indochina. The time at which war might
begin as not discussed, but from the manner of the discussion there was
no indication at tomorrow was necessarily the day. I carried that
impression away because it contributed to my personal surprise when the
news did come.
"COUNSEL. Was there anything said, Commander, with reference to the
subject of notice or notification as a result of the papers that were
"Commander SCHULZ. There was no mention made of sending any further
warning or alert. However, having concluded this discussion about the
war going to begin at the Japanese convenience, then the President said
that he believed he would talk to Admiral Stark. He started to get
Admiral Stark on the telephone. It was then determined-I do not recall
exactly, but I believe the White House operator told the President that
Admiral Stark could be reached at the National Theater.
"COUNSEL. Now, that was from what was said there that you draw the
conclusion that that was what the White House operator reported?
"Commander SCHULZ. Yes, sir. I did not hear what the operator said, but
the national Theater was mentioned in my presence and the President went
on to state, in substance, that he would reach the Admiral later, that
he did not want to cause public alarm by having the Admiral paged or
otherwise when in theater where I believe the fact that he had a box
reserved was mentioned and at if he had left suddenly he would surely
have been seen because of the position which he held and undue alarm
might be caused and the President did not wish that to happen because he
could get him within perhaps another half an hour in any case. [287a]"
In considering the remark  by the President to Mr. Hopkins that the
first 13 parts meant war it is significant that there was no indication
as to *when* or *where* war might be expected. [288a] The testimony of
Commander Schulz should be considered with that of Admiral Beardall, to
which reference will hereafter be made, in seeking to determine the
reaction of the President to the full Japanese 14-part memorandum.
 Id., at pp. 12441-12444.
[287a] The evidence tends to indicate that following his return home
after the theater, Admiral Stark was advised that the White House had
called, and that he did thereupon call the White House. See testimony.
Capt. H. D. Krick, U. S. Navy, before the committee.
 Referring to the comment made by the President, General Marshall
testified: "He didn't tell me, and didn't tell the Secretary of War. So
he made a statement offhand on reading the thing" (13 parts). Committee
record, p. 13803.
[288a] In connection with the remark attributed to the President it is
to be noted that at a meeting of the War Council on November 25,
President Roosevelt warned that we were likely to be attacked, perhaps
as soon as the following Monday, for the "Japanese are notorious for
making an attack without warning." See statement of Mr. Stimson,
committee record, p. 14390.
218 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
The estimate given the first 13 parts by witnesses before the committee
who reviewed them on the night of December 6 follows: 
"Admiral TURNER. However, when I saw the 13 parts, which I believe was
about 11:30 on the night of December 6, I inquired from the officer who
showed it to me and brought it to my house as to who had seen that
dispatch, and he informed me that Admiral Wilkinson and Admiral
Ingersoll and Secretary Knox had all seen it before it had been shown to
me. I considered the dispatch very important, but as long as those
officers had seen it, I did not believe it was my function to take any
* * * * *
"Admiral INGERSOLL.  * * * when I read the 13 parts there was
nothing on which the Navy Department as such could that night take
action. The gist of the 13 parts was a restatement of the Japanese
position we had known, of course, all along."
* * * * *
"Admiral WILKINSON.  * * * both General Miles and myself, and to
some extent Captain Kramer, felt that this was a diplomatic message; it
was a message that indicated, or that resembled the diplomatic white
papers, of which we had often seen examples, that it was a justification
of the Japanese position.
"The strain was largely in the 14th part which we discussed the next
* * * * *
Admiral Wilkinson agreed that he, General Miles, and Admiral Beardall
discussed the first 13 parts and referred to it as more or less a "white
paper" or diplomatic communication-"A justification for the Japanese
"General MILES.  I called him for the purpose of finding out what
had been done, what was going to be done with these first 13 parts, but
I wish to call your attention, Senator, to the fact that the first 13
parts as such was not of great military significance. We had already
discounted through many days the fact that in all probability the
Japanese reply to our note of November 26 would be unfavorable and that
was all that the first 13 parts told us. When we got the fourteenth part
we saw quite a different picture, when we got the 1 p. m. message we saw
quite a different picture, but there was no reason for alerting or
waking up the Chief of Staff, we will say, or certainly Secretary Hull,
on the night of December 6 that I could see.
"Captain KRAMER.  I have stated that the first part I recollect
seeing is part 8. If you will refer to that you will see that there is
nothing in that part-in fact, the last half of that part quotes the
United States note-that was materially different than the general tenor
of previous notes back and forth between the United States and Japan.
"When the first 13 parts were complete I did however, have that distinct
impression, that this note was far and appreciably stronger language
than earlier notes had been and that it indicated a strong probability
that the Japanese were concluding any further negotiations.
* * * * *
"Colonel BRATTON  * * * I considered the presence of the 13 parts
in Washington relatively unimportant militarily that evening.
"I did so consider it upon their receipt and I still consider it now.
They contributed no information, they contributed no additional
information to the matters that we already had from magic and other
sources as to the impending crisis with Japan.
"The message was incomplete. It ended on the note, in the thirteenth
part: "Therefore, viewed in its entirety, the Japanese government
regrets that it cannot accept the proposal as a basis of negotiation "
"This was primarily of interest, immediate interest to the Secretary of
State, not to the Secretary of War or the Chief of General Staff for it
was not an ulti-
 Committee record, p. 5097.
 Id., at p. 11377.
 Id., at p. 4665.
 Id., at p. 4667.
 Id., at pp. 2482, 2483.
 Id., at pp. 10445, 10446.
 Id., at pp. 12057, 12058.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 219
latum, it was not a declaration of war, nor was it a severance of
The committee has noted the emphasis, publicity and speculation
concerning the whereabouts of General Marshall, the Chief of Staff and
Admiral Stark, the Chief of Naval Operations, on the evening of December
6. General Marshall has testified that while he could not recall his
whereabouts with certainty he presumed he was at home. Admiral Stark
could not recall his whereabouts, but the evidence establishes that he
was at the National Theater seeing *The Student Prince*. [295a] Similar
emphasis has been placed on the fact that the Chief of Staff was
horseback riding on the morning of December 7, as was his Sunday-morning
custom. The first 13 parts were neither delivered to nor read by either
General Marshall or Admiral Stark on the evening of December 6. In any
event, the question of their whereabouts on Saturday evening, December
6, is by any construction unimportant inasmuch as both officers saw
nothing in the first 13 parts to serve as basis for additional warnings
o our outposts when they read them on the morning of December 7. [295b]
In this connection, it is to be noted that the evidence conclusively
establishes that no conferences were held at the White House or
elsewhere with respect to the Pacific situation by ranking military and
executive officials on the evening of December 6, 1941.
The consensus of testimony by officers of the War and Navy Departments
is to the effect that the first 13 parts, as such, of the 14-part
message bore little or no military significance.  While they
revealed a position assumed by Japan to which our Government could not
subscribe there was no statement that negotiations were to be ruptured
and certainly no intimation of the treacherous attack to be delivered at
Pearl Harbor the following morning. From the "pilot message" it was
clear that a fourteenth part was to be transmitted and that it would
probably be received on December 7. Considering this fact and the
further fact that the first 13 parts gave no indication of immediate
military action by Japan, there was no occasion on the evening of
December 6 to dispatch additional warnings to outposts, already regarded
as alerted, on the basis of a message that was manifestly not complete.
It is clear there was no intelligence contained in the message itself
which had not been known for some time.
*Military Significance of "Pilot" and 14-Part Messages Apart from
An intercepted dispatch of November 28, 1941, from Tokyo to its
Washington ambassadors had stated, referring to Mr. Hull's note of
November 26: 
"Well, you two Ambassadors have exerted superhuman efforts but, in spite
of this, the United States has gone ahead and presented this humiliating
proposal. This was quite unexpected and extremely regrettable. The
[295a] See note 287a, supra.
[295b] General Marshall said: "* * * the first 13 parts were not of the
nature of a vital threat as the 14th part. That was a message of direct
importance to the Secretary of State and of related importance, of
course, to the Secretary of War and the Secretary of Navy who had been
collaborating with him in his relationship in the dealings with Japan."
Committee record, p. 3095.
For Admiral Stark's estimate of the first 13 parts see Note 296, infra.
 Admiral Stark stated that he regarded the first 13 parts, when he
saw them on the morning of December 7, as routine, a rehashing of the
attitude of the Japanese towards the situation which had been
accumulating over a period of weeks or months. In other words, that the
13 parts by themselves carried no implication other than indicated; that
it was a rehashing, a restatement of their attitude. Committee record,
 Committee exhibit No. 1, p. 195.
220 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
ment can by no means use it as a basis for negotiations. *Therefore,
with a report of the views of the Imperial (Government on this American
proposal which I will send you in two or three days, the negotiations
will be de facto ruptured*. This is inevitable.
In the foregoing dispatch the Japanese Government stated it would send a
reply to Nomura and Kurusu within 2 or 3 days. This presupposes the
presence and *availability* in Washington of these ambassadors to
receive the reply. Clearly, therefore, war between Japan and the United
States was not to eventuate *until* the reply had been received in
Washington, otherwise the Japanese ambassadors would not be available
for the purpose of receiving such reply. By the same token war would not
eventuate until the ambassadors had an opportunity to *deliver* the
reply, otherwise little or no purpose would be served in sending it
Knowledge of this fact should have intensified alertness in the War and
Navy Departments to such a point that from the moment the 14-part reply
started coming in, all hands should have been on the qui vive and
additionally an adequate number of responsible officers should have been
actually at their stations with full authority to act in any emergency
throughout the night of December 6-7. This statement is of course
subject to the observation that Japan had indicated in the pilot message
that the full reply would not be received until the following day,
Sunday, December 7, and even that was not certain; that instructions
would be sent in a separate dispatch with respect to the time of
presentation and "the situation is extremely delicate, and when you
receive it (the reply) I want you to please *keep it secret for the time
being*." Further, it is clear from the evidence that the receipt of the
pilot message and portions of the first 13 parts of the 14-part
memorandum served as basis for special measures taken by the War and
Navy Departments to insure prompt handling, decoding, and distribution
of this magic material on the evening of December 6. The naval officers
who received the first 13 parts on the evening of December 6 appear to
have regarded them as requiring no action during the evening. Within the
Army the first 13 parts were seen by the Chief of the Military
Intelligence Division, who in view of the fact that the fourteenth part
had not been received and the further fact that this message appeared to
him to be of interest primarily to the State Department, decided that it
required no further distribution within the Army that evening but should
be delivered to the State Department. [297a] But the fact that the
message was being received removed the last *known* barrier to Japan's
taking military action. 
In consequence, it is not believed the War and Navy establishments in
Washington were sufficiently alerted on the evening of December 6
 As has been indicated, the evidence is in dispute as to whether
the first 13 parts were in reality delivered to a watch officer at the
State Department on the evening of December 6. See Note 280a, supra.
 However, it should be noted that Ambassador Nomura in a dispatch
to Tokyo of November 26, 1941, stated: "The United States is using the
excuse that she is at present negotiating with the various competent
countries. In view of the fact that she will propagandize that we are
continuing these negotiations only with the view of preparing for our
expected moves, should we, during the course of these conversations,
deliberately enter into our scheduled operations, there is great danger
that the responsibility for the rupture of negotiations will be cast
upon us. There have been times in the past when she could have
considered discontinuing conversations because of our invasion of French
Indo-China. Now, should we, without clarifying our intentions, force a
rupture in our negotiations and suddenly enter upon independent
operations, there is great fear that she may use such a thing as that as
counter-propaganda against us. They might consider doing the same thing
insofar as our plans for Thai are concerned. Nevertheless, such a thing
as the clarification of our intention is a strict military secret;
consequently, *I think that it might be the better plan, dependent of
course on the opinions of the Government, that the current negotiations
be clearly and irrevocably concluded either through an announcement to
the American Embassy in Tokyo or by declaration for internal and
external* consumption. I would like, if such a course is followed, to
make representations here at the same time." Committee exhibit No. 1, p.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 221
with a view to receiving the Japanese reply. As events turned out,
however, there was nothing contained in the first 13-parts to have
served as basis for additional warnings to outposts already regarded
adequately alerted. The information contained in the first 13-parts of
the 14-part message did not add to the sum total of information already
supplied the commanders in Hawaii who had been warned of war and advised
"hostile action possible at any moment." It did not point to Hawaii. It
did not provide the essential *where* or, with any degree of
definitiveness, the *when* of the attack. There is no intelligence
contained in the first 13-parts which this Committee can conclude could
reasonably be expected to have changed the decisions already made in
*The Fourteenth Part*
At 2:38 a. m., December 7, there was filed in Tokyo and intercepted by a
Navy monitoring station between 3:05 and 3:10 a. m. the fourteenth and
final part of Japan's reply to Secretary Hull's note of November 26.
 This message as subsequently decoded by the Navy read as follows:
"(Part 14 of 14)
"7. Obviously it is the intention of the American Government to conspire
with Great Britain and other countries to obstruct Japan's efforts
toward the establishment of peace through the creation of a New Order in
East Asia, and especially to reserve Anglo-American rights and interests
by keeping Japan and China at war. This intention has been revealed
clearly during the course of the present: negotiations. Thus, the
earnest hope of the Japanese Government to adjust Japanese-American
relations and to preserve and promote the peace of the Pacific rough
cooperation with the American Government has finally been lost.
"*The Japanese Government regrets to have to notify hereby the American
Government that in view of the attitude of the American Government it
cannot but consider that it is impossible to reach an agreement through
The fourteenth part was available in the Navy Department for
distribution at some time between 7:30 and 8:00 a. m.  Captain
Kramer made delivery within the Navy Department shortly after a. m. The
delivery to the White House and to Secretary Knox, who was at the State
Department for a 10 a. m. meeting with Secretaries Hull and Stimson, was
made shortly before 10 a. m. Distribution of the fourteenth part within
the War Department was begun at 9 a. m. with subsequent delivery to the
It is to be noted there is no statement that Japan intended to declare
war on the United States nor, indeed, that formal diplomatic relations
were to be broken-merely that the current negotiations cannot produce an
agreement. The fourteenth part is much less severe than the strongly
worded first 13 parts would have indicated. Admiral Beardall testified
as follows with respect to delivery of the fourteenth part o the
"As I recollect it, I went into his room, early, about 10:00 o'clock on
Sunday morning, with a message or messages, which I presume, to the best
of my recollection, was the 14th part of this 13-part message that came
in the night before, which delivered to him.
 Committee exhibit No. 41.
 Id., No. 1, p. 245. As forwarding instructions to the radio
station handling the fourteenth part there appeared at the beginning the
plain English phrase "VERY IMPORTANT".
 Committee record, pp. 10461-10463.
 Id,, at pp. 14010, 14011.
222 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
Asked if there was any discussion or conversation with the President
when he made the delivery, Admiral Beardall testified: 
"No discussion. We never discussed magic. I do recollect him saying
though, which marks this in my mind, that *it looked as though the Japs
are going to sever negotiations, break off negotiations*."
Admiral Beardall further testified that at the time of delivering the
fourteenth part to the President there was nothing in the manner of the
President which would indicate he was expecting an attack within a
period of hours; that there "was no alarm, or no mention of this,
mention of war, or of any actions on his part that would indicate that
he was expecting an attack." 
As to the question whether termination of negotiations would indicate
certain war it is significant to note that the Japanese Ambassadors
themselves stated in a message to Tokyo dated November 26, 1941: 
"We suppose that *the rupture of the present negotiations does not
necessarily mean war between Japan and the United States*, but after we
break off, as we said, the military occupation of Netherlands India is
to be expected of England and the United States. Then we would attack
them and a clash with them would be inevitable * * *."
From a review of the fourteenth part it is clear that nothing is added
to what was already known with respect to Japan's reaction to Secretary
Hull's note. To be sure it is observed that the "hope * * * to preserve
and promote the peace of the Pacific through cooperation with the
American Government has finally been lost" and "in view of the attitude
of the American Government it cannot but consider that it is impossible
to reach an agreement through further negotiations." But these facts had
already been known for several days and the only paramount
considerations at this time were *when* and *where* Japan would strike.
A thorough consideration of the fourteen-part message, when viewed in
the light of all other intelligence already available in Washington,
reflects no added information, particularly of a military character,
which would serve further to alert outpost commanders who had already
been supplied a "war warning" and informed that "hostile action possible
at any moment."  This conclusion is partially modified to the
extent that actual delivery of the fourteen part message to the American
Government might be construed as removing the last diplomatic obstacle,
in the minds of the Japanese, to launching an attack.
"ONE O'CLOCK" AND FINAL CODE DESTRUCTION MESSAGES
Two messages intercepted on the morning of December 7 have received
paramount consideration-the celebrated "one o'clock" message specifying
the time for delivery of the Japanese 14-part memorandum to the
Government of the United States and the message setting forth final
instructions to the Japanese Embassy concerning
 Committee record, p. 14047.
 Committee exhibit No. 1, p. 181.
 General Marshall stated: "* * * the particular part which affected
me and caused me to act was not the 14 parts. It was the one o'clock,
which, unfortunately, they put on the bottom of the pile and I read
through everything before I came to that." committee record, p. 13805.
Referring to the Japanese 14-part memorandum, Admiral Turner said: "I
did not consider that that message and the fact that it appeared to be
an ultimatum changed the over-all situation in the least degree, because
I was certain in my mind that there was going to be war immediately
between the United states and Japan, and this was merely confirmatory.
The full orders, and what I felt was the full picture Of the situation
had been given to the fleet commanders in the dispatch of November 27,
and confirmed definitely by the later dispatches regarding the
destruction of the Japanese codes and the Navy Department's orders for
our people to destroy codes in exposed positions." Committee record, p.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 223
the destruction of codes and secret papers. The latter was as follows:
"After deciphering part 14 of my #902 and also #907,  #908, 
and #909,  please destroy at once the remaining cipher machine and
all machine codes. Dispose in like manner also secret documents."
This message was intercepted shortly after the one o'clock message but
from the evidence it appears that both these intercepts were distributed
at approximately the same time. The "one o'clock" message read as
"Will the Ambassador please submit to the United States Government (if
possible to the Secretary of State) our reply to the United States at
1:00 p. m. on the 7th, your time."
This dispatch was filed by the Japanese at 4.18 a. m. December 7 and
intercepted by a Navy monitoring station at 4:37 a. m.  It was
decrypted and available in the Navy Department at approximately 7 a. m.
thereupon being sent to the Army for translation inasmuch as there was
no translator on duty in the Navy Department at that time. Translated
copies of the "one o'clock" message appear to have been returned to the
Navy at approximately 9 a. m. Captain Kramer testified  that upon
his return to the Navy Department at 10:20 a. m. he found the "one
o'clock" message and thereafter, between 10:30 and 10:35 a. m.,
delivered it to the office of the Chief of Naval Operations, where a
meeting was in progress. Delivery was then made within approximately 10
minutes to an aide to Secretary Hull at the State Department and
thereafter within roughly another 10 minutes, to a Presidential aide at
the White House. In the course of delivery to the office of the Chief of
Naval Operations and to Secretary Hull's aide mention was made of the
fact that 1 p. m. Washington time, was about dawn at Honolulu and about
the middle of the night in the Far East. *No mention was made that the
time indicated an attack at Pearl Harbor*. 
Delivery of the "one o'clock" message within the War Department was made
at some time between 9 and 10 a. m. General Marshall after being advised
at his quarters that an important message had been received, arrived at
his office at some time between 11:15 and 11:30 a. m. where he saw for
the first time the 14-part memorandum, General Gerow, General Miles, and
Colonel Bratton, among others, being present. After completion of his
reading of the memorandum General Marshall came to the "one o'clock"
message and appears to have attached immediate significance to it. He
testified that he and the officers present in his office were certain
the hour fixed in the "one o'clock" message had "some definite
significance;" that "something was going to happen at 1 o'clock;" that
"when they specified a day,
 Committee exhibit No. 1, p. 249.
 The dispatch set forth, infra, concerning delivery at 1 p. m.,
December 7, of the 14-part memorandum.
 No. 908, dated December 7, read: "All concerned regret very much
that due to failure in adjusting Japanese-American relations, matters
have come to what they are now, despite all the efforts you two
Ambassadors have been making. I wish to take this opportunity to offer
my deepest thanks to you both for your endeavors and hard work as well
as for what all the members of the Embassy have done." Committee exhibit
No. 1., p. 248.
 No. 909, dated December 7, read: "(From Bureau Chief Yamamoto to
Commerical Attache Iguchi and his staff as well as to Secretary Yuki) I,
together with the members of the Bureau, deeply appreciate and heartily
thank you for your great effort which you have been making for many
months in behalf of our country despite all difficulities in coping with
the unprecedented crisis. We pray that you will continue to be in good
health." Committee exhibit No. 1, p. 248.
 Committee exhibit No. 1, p. 248.
 Id., No. 41.
 Committee record, pp. 10470-10479.
 See testimony of Captain Kramer before the committee; also Captain
McCollum, committee record, p. 9275.
224 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
that of course had significance, but not comparable to an hour;" and,
again, that it was "a new item of information of a peculiar character."
 At 11:30 or 11:40 a. m. General Marshall telephoned Admiral Stark
 and, upon learning the latter had read the message, proposed that
a warning be sent immediately to all theaters concerned. It should be
noted that the exact time of Admiral Stark's arrival at the Navy
Department is not definitely established although it is known that he
was there by 10:30 a. m. on the morning of December 7, at the very
latest.  Admiral Stark hesitated because he regarded the theater
commanders as already alerted and he was afraid of confusing them
further.  General Marshall nevertheless wrote in longhand the draft
of a warning message to the Western Defense Command, the Panama Command,
the Hawaiian Command, and the Philippine Command, as follows: 
"The Japanese are presenting at 1 p. m. Eastern Standard Time, today,
what amounts to an ultimatum. Also they are under orders to destroy
their code machine immediately. Just what significance the hour set may
have we do not know, but be on alert accordingly."
He instructed Colonel Bratton to take the foregoing message immediately
to the message center to be dispatched by radio but as Colonel Bratton
was leaving the room, Admiral Stark called to request that there be
placed on the dispatch the "usual expression to inform the naval
officer". The following was therefore added in handwriting, by General
Marshall, "Inform naval authorities of this communication" 
EVENTS ATTENDING TRANSMITTAL OF THE DECEMBER 7 DISPATCH
By 11:50 a. m. the handwritten warning had been delivered by Colonel
Bratton to Colonel French,  in charge of the message center. When
Colonel Bratton returned, General Marshall inquired as to how much time
would be required to encipher and dispatch the message. Not
understanding the explanation, he instructed both Colonels Bratton and
Bundy to obtain a clearer picture from the message center. These two
officers upon returning advised that the message would be in the hands
of the recipients within thirty minutes. Still not being satisfied,
General Marshall is indicated to have sent the
 Army Pearl Harbor Board (top secret) Report, pp. 7, 8; committee
record, p. 13806.
 See committee exhibit No. 58.
 See committee record, p. 5813. The testimony of some witnesses
indicates Admiral Stark arrived at the Navy Department as early as 9 a.
 See Army Pearl Harbor Board (top secret) record, pp. 7, 8. Admiral
Stark said: "During the morning of Sunday, 7 December 1941, we had
information to the effect that the Japanese Ambassador was to present
his Government's reply to the 10-point note to the Secretary of State at
1 p. m. that same day. I was discussing this note and the time of its
presentation with the head of the Central Division (Captain Schuirmann)
when General Marshall called me on the phone to ask if I knew of it. I
told him I did, and he asked me what I thought about sending the
information concerning the time of presentation on to the various
commanders in the Pacific. *My first answer to him was that we had sent
them so much already that I hesitated to send more*. I hung up the
phone, and not more than a minute or two later I called him back,
stating that there might be some peculiar significance in the Japanese
Ambassador calling on Mr. Hull at 1 p. m. and that I would go along with
him in sending the information to the Pacific. I asked him if his
communications were such that he could get it out quickly because our
communications were quite rapid when the occasion demanded it. He
replied that he felt they could get it through very quickly. I then
asked him to include in the dispatch instructions to his people to
inform their naval opposites" Committee record, p. 5676.
 Committee exhibit No. 32, p. 21.
 Col Edward F. French.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 225
Two officers back again and their report upon returning was regarded as
satisfactory; that is, he felt assured from what he was told that the
warning would be received by the pertinent commanders before 1:00 p. m.
After receiving the message Colonel French personally took charge of its
dispatch. Learning that the War Department radio had been out of contact
with Honolulu since approximately 10:20 a. m. he hereupon immediately
decided that the most expeditious manner of getting the message to
Hawaii was by commercial facilities; that is, Western Union to San
Francisco, thence by commercial radio to Honolulu. The message was filed
at the Army signal center at 12:01 a. m. (6:31 a. m., Hawaii); teletype
transmission to Western Union completed at 12:17 p. m. (6:47 a. m.,
Hawaii); received by RCA Honolulu 1:03 p. m. (7:33 a. m., Hawaii);
received by signal office, Fort Shafter, Hawaii, at approximately 5:15
p. m. (11:45 a. m., Hawaii) after the attack. It appears that the
teletype arrangement between RCA in Honolulu and Fort Shafter was not
operating at the particular hour the message was received with the
result that it was dispatched by a messenger on a bicycle who was
diverted from completing delivery by the first bombing.
CHOICE OF FACILITIES
Colonel French testified that important messages to be transmitted
immediately had previously been sent by commercial means when there was
interference on the Army circuit between Honolulu and the War
Department; that on the morning of December 7 Honolulu appeared to be in
touch with San Francisco; that he had a teletype connection from his
office to the Western Union office in Washington and knew Western Union
had a tube connecting with RCA across the street in San Francisco; that
RCA had 40 kilowatts of power whereas his set had 10 kilowatts; and that
he concluded the fastest means of transmission would be via Western
Union and RCA. He stated that he acted within his authority in deciding
to send the message by commercial means and did not tell General
Marshall how the message was going. 
Colonel French stated further that he had not considered using the
telephone; that the telephone was never used by the signal center; that
it was unsuitable for a classified message, and that, in any event "if
they wanted to use the telephone that was up to the individuals
themselves, Chief of Staff, or whoever the individual concerned." 
According to General Marshall, the telephone was not considered as a
means of transmission, or that it may have been considered but would not
have been used, he was quite certain, certainly not to Hawaii first;
that if he had thought he could put a telephone call through, he would
have called General MacArthur first, and then would have called
 Army Pearl Harbor Board Record, pp. 8-10,14. There is some
testimony indicating only two trip were made by Colonel Bratton to the
 Army Pearl Harbor Board Record, pp. 188, 195; Roberts Commission
Record, pp. 1843, 1844, 1846.
 Army Pearl Harbor Board (top secret) record, pp. 189-205.
226 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
the Panama Canal. He observed that it was important to send the message
in code because it was not known what "one o'clock meant" and that it
might have meant only a termination of diplomatic relations or some
action in southeast Asia. General Marshall pointed out that there was no
secrecy in the telephone and that he was trying to gain time and yet had
to be careful not to "precipitate the whole business" or do anything
which could be construed as an act of war; that it was important not to
disclose to the Japanese our reading of their codes. 
With respect to the matter of using Navy radio facilities, Colonel
French stated that the Navy used more power than did the Army and
occasionally the Army asked the Navy to communicate messages but that in
practice they did not use the Navy for expediting traffic to Honolulu.
He considered the possible use of Navy transmission of the warning
message but decided against it since it would have required time to
determine whether the Navy was also having trouble getting through to
Hawaii and the message would have had to be delivered from the Navy at
Pearl Harbor to Fort Shafter. 
General Marshall had no knowledge on the morning of December 7 that the
Army radio could not establish contact with Hawaii nor that the Navy had
a more powerful radio to Honolulu.  It is to be noted that the
message got through to addressees other than Hawaii prior to the attack.
After the event it is easy to find other means of communication which
General Marshall might have employed. This will always be the case. It
is clear from the record, however, that he selected a secure means
dictated by the contents of the message and was assured after two or
three requests for verification that the message would get through in
adequate time. It did not reach Hawaii because of a failure in
communications concerning which he could not have known and concerning
which he was not advised. It was the failure of communications and not
the selection of an improper channel that occasioned the delay.
While it is not regarded as contributing to the disaster, for reasons
hereinafter to appear, it is considered extremely regrettable that
Colonel French did not advise the Chief of Staff upon his inability to
employ the Army's radio, the anticipated means of communication,
particularly when he realized the great importance of the message and
the-personal concern of the Chief of Staff for its expeditious
SIGNIFICANCE OF THE "ONE O'CLOCK" AND CODE DESTRUCTION MESSAGES
No one knew or presumed to know definitely just what the time "one
o'clock" meant.  Indeed, the warning sent by the Chief of
 Army Pearl Harbor Board (top secret) Record, pp. 10-14. See also
Roberts Commission record, p. 1803.
 Army Pearl Harbor Board record, pp. 203, 204. Roberts Commission
record, p. 1844.
 Roberts Commission record, p. 1801.
 Admiral Stark observed: "My first reaction was that we had sent so
much out that-and as there was no deduction from the message, as to what
it meant, at least we had made none at that time, that it would be just
as well not to send it. A few days previous, when we had a discussion
whether to send out anything more, the question came up, be careful not
to send too much, it might create the story of 'wolf'." Committee
Record, page 5815. In this regard it is to be noted that Admiral Smith,
Chief of Staff to Admiral Kimmel said that he thought there had been too
much "crying wolf" and that such warnings had been received not only
during Admiral Kimmel's administration but also previously by Admiral
Richardson. See Hart Inquiry Record, page 64.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 227
Staff stated "*just what significance the hour set may have we do not
know*." Despite this fact the Hawaiian commanders have asserted or
implied that if they had received this information at the earliest
possible moment on the morning of December 7, they would have
anticipated a surprise air attack upon Pearl Harbor and have instituted
appropriate defensive measures accordingly.  It is to be noted,
however, that one of the asserted justifications by Admiral Kimmel and
General Short for their not having taken the necessary defensive
measures prior to December 7 was the fact that the warnings they had
received, while indicating that war was imminent, pointed to southeast
Asia and not to Hawaii as the likely point of attack.
There was nothing in the fact that the Japanese ambassadors were to
present their Government's reply to the American note of November 26 at
1 p. m., December 7, pointing any more to an attack on Hawaii than to
any other point to which General Marshall directed is dispatch: Panama,
the west coast, the Philippines. The intelligence contained in the "one
o'clock" intercept indicated no more than the distinct possibility that
*some* Japanese military action would take place *somewhere* at 1 p. m.
What Admiral Kimmel and General Short would have done upon receiving
this intelligence or the Marshall dispatch before the attack necessarily
Testifying before the Roberts Commission concerning that portion of the
December 7 warning pointing out that instructions had been issued for
the Japanese Embassy to destroy its code machine immediately, General
Short was asked whether his dispositions would have been changed if the
message had reached him, say three hours before he attack. He replied:
"General SHORT. Yes. Oh, yes. I would have gone immediately to either-to
at least an alert against an air attack, and I probably would have gone
against a complete attack, because it looked so significant.
"The CHAIRMAN. Well, can you tell me what was in that message that would
have stirred you up?
"General SHORT. The thing that would have affected me more than the
other matter was the fact that they had ordered the code machines
destroyed, because to us that means just one thing; that they are going
into an entirely new phase, and that they want to be perfectly sure that
the code will not be broken for a minimum time, say of 3 or 4 days. That
would have been extremely significant to me, the code machine, much more
significant than just the ultimatum."
It is to be noted that when appearing before the Roberts Commission,
General Short insisted he had no knowledge concerning the destruction by
Japanese diplomatic representatives of codes and confidential papers,
prior to December 7. As has been seen, the evidence before this
committee reflects that he received substantially this information on
Admiral Kimmel has likewise suggested that the fact the Japanese
Washington Embassy had been ordered to destroy its code machine would
have been of greater significance to him than information received on
December 3 that the Embassy, among others, had been ordered to destroy
"most of its codes."  With respect to the latter
 General Short said: "This message (the one o'clock message)
definitely pointed to an attack on Pearl Harbor at 1 p. m., Washington
time." Committee Record, page 7992.
 Roberts Commission record, pp. 1619, 1620.
 Committee record, pp. 7476, 7477.
228 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
intelligence Admiral Kimmel has testified:  "I didn't consider that
of any vital importance when I received it * * *" Significantly,
however, on December 6 the commandant of the Fourteenth Naval District
advised the Navy Department: "believe local consul has destroyed all but
one system * * *" 
It is concluded that the information contained in the Japanese intercept
of December 7 instructing the Washington Embassy to destroy its
remaining code machine, added little if any information to that already
possessed by Admiral Kimmel concerning Japanese destruction of codes and
confidential matter; and that if the intelligence supplied him in this
regard on December 3 did not serve to warn of the immediate imminence of
war the information concerning the destruction of the Japanese code
machine on the morning of December 7 would not have effectively modified
the situation. In the case of General Short, as elsewhere pointed out,
it appears that while Admiral Kimmel did not supply him with the
intelligence he had received concerning the destruction of codes, the
Commanding General none-the-less received information of an equivalent
We believe, however, that the "one o'clock" intercept should have been
recognized as indicating the distinct possibility that some Japanese
military action would occur somewhere at 1 p. m., December 7 Washington
time. If properly appreciated, this intercept should have suggested a
dispatch to *all* Pacific outpost commanders supplying this information,
as General Marshall attempted to do immediately upon seeing it.
SIGNIFICANT MESSAGES TRANSLATED AFTER THE ATTACK
INTELLIGENCE CONCERNING HAWAIIAN DEFENSES
One of the most unfortunate circumstances attending the handling of
Magic is the fact that several very significant messages were not
translated until after the attack. After December 7, 13 messages 
between Tokyo and Honolulu from November 24 to December 6 were
translated, several of these differing markedly from any of the messages
between these points translated prior to December 7. Three of the 13
messages were from Tokyo, two of which related to instructions and
interest concerning fleet locations and movements  with the third,
however, containing for the first time an inquiry from Tokyo concern-
 Id., at P. 7477.
 The extreme importance of codes being destroyed in the consulates
was expressed by Admiral Ingersoll in his testimony:
"I considered that the information which we received regarding the
destruction of the codes and which was sent out to the fleets as one of
the two most important messages that were sent out by the Chief of Naval
Operations during the entire period before Pearl Harbor, the other one
being the dispatch stating that, 'this is a war warning' in effect and
that all hope of negotiations had broken off . . .
"The importance of the messages regarding the destruction of the codes
is this: If you rupture diplomatic negotiations you do not necessarily
have to burn your codes. The diplomats go home and they can pack up
their codes with their dolls and take them home. Also, when you rupture
diplomatic negotiations you do not rupture consular relations. The
consuls stay on.
"Now in this particular set of dispatches they not only told their
diplomats in Washington and London to burn their codes but they told
their consuls in Manila, in Hongkong, Singapore, and Batavia to burn
their codes and that did not mean a rupture of diplomatic negotiations,
*it meant war, and that information was sent out to the fleet as soon
as we got it* * * *" Committee record, pp. 11286, 11287.
 Committee exhibit No. 2, pp. 16-29.
 Id., at pp. 18, 26.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 229
ing the defenses of the fleet in port. The latter message dated December
2 (translated December 30) read: 
"In view of the present situation, the presence in port of warships,
airplane carriers, and cruisers is of utmost importance. Hereafter, to
the utmost of your ability, let me know day by day. Wire me in each case
whether or not there are any observation balloons above Pearl Harbor or
if there are any indications that they will be sent up. Also advise me
whether or not the warships are provided with antimine nets."
The messages translated after December 7 from Honolulu to Tokyo so
reflect for the first time that information relating to the defenses at
Pearl Harbor was being collected and supplied to Japan. In a message of
November 24, Tokyo was advised that on the preceding night five mine
layers had conducted mine-laying operations outside the harbor.  A
November 28 message reported, "there are eight 'B-17' planes at Midway
and the altitude range of their anti-aircraft guns is (5,000 feet?)";
that "12,000 men (mostly marines) are expected to reinforce the troops
in Honolulu during December or January"; and that "there has usually
been one cruiser in the waters about (15,000 feet?) south of Pearl
Harbor and one or two destroyers at the entrance to the harbor." 
Of extreme significance are two messages of December 6 (both translated
December 8) one of which reads as follows: 
"Re the last part of your #123. 
"1. On the American Continent in October the Army began training barrage
balloon troops at Camp Davis, North Carolina. Not only have they ordered
four or five hundred balloons, but it is understood that they are
considering the use of these balloons in the defense of Hawaii and
Panama. Insofar as Hawaii is concerned, though investigations have been
made in the neighborhood of Pearl Harbor, they have not set up mooring
equipment, nor have they selected the troops to man them. Furthermore,
there is no indication that any training for the maintenance of balloons
is being undertaken. At the present time there are no signs of barrage
balloon equipment. In addition, it is difficult to imagine that they
have actually any. However, even though they have actually made
preparations, because they must control the air over the water and land
runways of the airports in the vicinity of Pearl Harbor, Hickam, Ford,
and Ewa, there are limits in the balloon defense of Pearl Harbor. *I
imagine that in all probability there is considerable opportunity left
to take advantage for a surprise attack against these places*."
"2. In my opinion the battleships do not have torpedo nets. The details
are not known. I will report the results of my investigation."
The other message of December 6 from Honolulu to Tokyo reported, among
other things, "it appears that no air reconnaissance is being conducted
by the fleet air arm." 
Also of particular interest is a message from Honolulu on December 3
 establishing a "number code" to indicate whether warships of a
given category were preparing to sortie or had departed. A system
 Id., at p. 21. This message was transmitted from Hawaii and was
translated by the Army in Washington, the translation bearing the
notation, "This message was received on December 23."
 Translated December 16, 1941, by the Army. Committee exhibit No.
2, p 17.
 Translated December 8, 1941, by the Army. Committee exhibit No. 2,
 Committee exhibit No. 2, pp. 27, 28. Army translation. *The record
indicates that this information was taken from matrial published in
 See committee exhibit No 2, p. 21.
 Id., p. 29. Army translation.
230 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
of houselights, newspaper want ads and bonfires, in addition to the use
of a sail boat, was designed to indicate the code numbers. While I this
system of communication did not relate to the defenses of Hawaii it was
clearly in anticipation that the normal channels for transmitting
information regarding the movements of the feet might be cut off and
that a visual means of communication, probably to submarines offshore,
was desired. It is also to be noted that no provision was made in the
code for transmitting information concerning the departure of ships
after December 6.
This message was decrypted and translated in rough form on December 6 by
a civilian translator in the Navy Department, it having been received
from a radio intercept station of the Army at Fort Hunt, Va. While
Captain Kramer testified he had no positive recollection of having seen
the translation prior to the attack, the evidence tends to indicate that
the rough translation was shown to him on the afternoon of December 6
but that on account of the pressure of work on other important
diplomatic messages, including the first 13 parts of the Japanese 14-
part memorandum, no action was taken on the translation until December
8.  It is to be noted that this intercept of December 3 was in a
code system referred to as "PA-K2" whereas the important Japanese 14-
part reply which started coming in on the afternoon of December 6 was in
the so-called Purple code system. The Purple was afforded first priority
which, it appears, explains Captain Kramer's not giving undivided
attention to the PA-K2 dispatch of December 3 together with the fact
that this message was badly garbled and the civilian translator who
handled it, while proficient in Japanese, had not as yet had adequate
experience concerning the handling of the intercepted dispatches. 
CONSIDERATIONS RESPONSIBLE FOR DELAY IN TRANSLATIONS
Of the 13 messages between Tokyo and Honolulu intercepted before
December 7 but not translated until after the attack, 5 were transmitted
on or after December 4. The evidence shows that because of technical
difficulties a delay of 3 days in transmitting, decoding, and
translating such messages was not unusual or unreasonable. 
 Id., pp. 22-24.
 See Hewitt Inquiry Record, pp. 588, 589; also pp. 511-515.
*Captain Safford stated that on the week end of December 6, 1941, his
unit handled three times the normal traffic on a busy day *. Navy Court
of Inquiry record, p. 756.
 See testimony of Captain McCollum, committee record, pp. 9283,
9284. The December 3 dispatch from the Honolulu consul was obtained by
the district intelligence officer of the Navy in Hawaii and was turned
over on December 5, 1941, to the Radio Intelligence Unit for decryption
and translation, Being in the more simple PA-K2 system the unit in
Hawaii while capable of breaking the message down did not decrypt and
translate it until after the attack.
 In discussing the matter of delays in securing the translations of
the Magic, General Miles stated:
"* * * it was not only a question of personnel and facilities here in
Washington for the decoding and translation of those messages, but also
very definitely out in the field. Those messages had to be picked out of
the air by intercepting stations. They were not all picked up by the
same station. There was no one station that could have picked them up.
"In fact, I understand now that the best intercepting station for the
few messages emanating from Japan itself was Manila.
"Now, some of those intercepting stations had teletype facilities by
which they could promptly transmit the message intercepted to
Washington. Some did not. Some of the messages were received in
Washington by air mail.
"So we had not only a question of personnel and facilities and a very
rapidly growing traffic to handle it in Washington but also the actual
intercepting of the message in the field and the transmission of those
messages to Washington." Committee record, pp. 2111, 2112.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 231
The same difficulty partially explains the delays ranging from 5 to 9
days in decoding and translating six of the eight messages transmitted
prior to December 4.
Of the remaining two messages, one dated November 24 was not translated
until 20 days after it had been received in Washington. The key in which
this message was transmitted was not recovered until about December 16.
The other is the message from Tokyo, dated December 2, requesting
information as to observation balloons and antimine nets at Pearl
Harbor. A transmission of this message was intercepted by a Navy station
on the west coast on December 2 and was received by the Navy on December
6 by air mail. This version of the intercept text, however, was badly
garbled and the actual decoding and translating was based on a copy
obtained from the Honolulu office of a radio corporation after the
attack on Pearl Harbor.
The two messages transmitted from Honolulu to Tokyo on December 6,
reporting the absence of barrage balloons, torpedo nets, and air
reconnaissance, were intercepted by an Army station on the west coast at
7:22 p. m. on December 6 and 12:42 a. m. on December 6, respectively
(Washington time), but were not processed as rapidly as were the
diplomatic messages transmitted from Tokyo to Washington on the same
night. On the basis of experience as to the contents of messages over
particular circuits and in particular codes, the very highest priority
was given to messages between Tokyo and Washington transmitted in the
most secure Japanese code, the so-called Purple, and the "pilot message"
of December 6 had alerted the services to what was coming on the Tokyo-
The messages from Honolulu to Tokyo on December 6 were transmitted in
the PA-K2 code system, a relatively insecure Japanese code and one past
experience had shown was not ordinarily used for messages which Tokyo
considered of the highest importance. The actual content of any message
could not of course be known until it had been decoded and translated,
and before the attack there was no reason to suspect that the two
messages sent from Honolulu to Tokyo on December 6 would prove of
unusual interest. It is to be noted, however, that the low-grade PA-K2
system was virtually the only code available to the Honolulu consul
after he had destroyed his major codes pursuant to instructions from
Tokyo on December 2. 
Despite the unfortunate fact that these messages were not processed
prior to December 7, no basis exists for criticizing the system which
was set up for decrypting and translating the intercepted Japanese
messages and for determining the priorities in the processing of the
various classes of messages. The evidence shows that throughout the
period of tense relations between the United States and Japan in 1941,
the important diplomatic messages were intercepted, transmitted to
Washington, decoded and translated, and disseminated with utmost speed.
Not infrequently they were in the hands of the authorized recipients of
Magic in our Government as soon as they were in the
 See exhibit No. 1, pp. 215, 216.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 232
hands of the Japanese addressees. Many of the civilian and military
personnel engaged in handling the Magic worked long hours far in excess
of those prescribed with no additional compensation nor special
recognition. *The success achieved in reading the Japanese diplomatic
codes merits the highest commendation and all witnesses familiar with
Magic material throughout the war have testified that it contributed
enormously to the defeat of the enemy, greatly shortened the war, and
saved many thousands of lives*. 
CONCLUSIONS WITH RESPECT TO INTELLIGENCE AVAILABLE IN WASHINGTON WHICH
WAS NOT SUPPLIED HAWAII
Both Admiral Kimmel and General Short have complained that they were
wrongfully deprived of intelligence available to Washington through the
Magic which would have altered completely their estimate of the
situation and would have resulted, if it had been supplied them, in a
proper alert and appropriate dispositions consistent with an adequate
defense of the Hawaiian coastal frontier. In a prepared statement, read
before the committee, Admiral Kimmel said: 
"The question will arise in your minds, as it has in mine: Would the
receipt of this information have made a difference in the events of
December 7? No man can now state as a fact that he would have taken a
certain course of action four years ago had he known facts which were
then unknown to him. All he can give is his present conviction on the
subject, divorcing himself from hindsight as far as humanly possible,
and re-creating the atmosphere of the past and the factors which then
influenced him. I give you my views, formed in this manner.
"Had I learned these vital facts and the "ships in harbor" messages on
November 28th, it is my present conviction that I would have rejected
the Navy Department's suggestion to send carriers to Wake and Midway. I
would have ordered the third carrier, the Saratoga, back from the West
Coast. I would have gone to sea with the Fleet and endeavored to keep it
in an intercepting position at sea. This would have permitted the
disposal of the striking power of the Fleet to meet an attack in the
Hawaiian area. The requirement of keeping the Fleet fueled, however,
would have made necessary the presence in Pearl Harbor from time to time
of detachments of various units of the main body of the Fleet."
In the last analysis, however, there are only four messages or groups of
messages which the commander in chief of the Pacific Fleet and the
commanding general of the Hawaiian Department contend pointed to Pearl
Harbor as a likely place of attack; i. e., the harbor berthing plan and
related dispatches,  the deadline messages,  the dispatches
which indicated the fraudulent nature of Japanese negotiations after
November 28, [350a] and the dispatch specifying 1 p. m., December 7, as
the time for delivery of the Japanese memorandum to the Secretary of
Referring to the berthing plan (and related dispatches) Admiral Kimmel
said, [350c] "These Japanese instructions and reports pointed to
 See note 113, supra.
 See committee record, pp. 6805, 6806.
 See section " 'Ships in Harbor' Reports," supra.
[350a] See section "Dispatches Indicating Fraudulent Nature of
Negotiations after November 28, 1941," supra.
[350b] See section "Significance of the 'One o'clock' and Code
Destruction Messages," supra.
[350c] Committee record, pp. 6779, 6780.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 233
an attack by Japan upon the ships in Pearl Harbor." Additionally, he has
indicated that the dispatches concerning the deadlines and fraudulent
negotiations [350d] pointed to Pearl Harbor.
During the course of committee examination General Short was asked
whether, "outside of the message carving up Pearl Harbor into five
divisions," there was any information among the Magic intelligence which
pointed to an attack upon Pearl Harbor any more than upon any other
place. He replied: [350e]
"That was the most definite thing, and then the fact that the delivery
of the message was at 1 p. m. Washington time, which would be shortly
after dawn in Honolulu, which I think was an indication."
At another point, referring to the "harbor berthing plan" and the so-
called "one o'clock" message, General Short said, [350f] "I think those
two things are the really definite things that pointed to Pearl Harbor"
and that the other intercepted messages related to the "more tense
situation as it developed."
As heretofore pointed out, we are unable to conclude that the berthing
plan and related dispatches pointed directly to an attack on Pearl
Harbor, nor are we able to conclude that the plan was a "bomb plot" in
view of the evidence indicating it was not such. [350g] We are of the
opinion, however, that the berthing plan and related dispatches should
have received careful consideration and created a serious question as to
their significance. Since they indicated a particular interest in the
Pacific Fleet's base this intelligence should have been appreciated and
supplied the commander in chief of the Pacific Fleet and the commanding
general of the Hawaiian Department for their assistance, along with
other information and intelligence available to them, in making their
estimate of the situation.
We believe that the deadline messages and the messages indicating
fraudulent Japanese diplomacy after November 28 in themselves no more
indicated Hawaii as a likely point of attack than any other point in the
Pacific. The equivalent of this intelligence was supplied Admiral Kimmel
in the dispatch of November 27 beginning, "This dispatch is to be
considered a war warning" and advising, "negotiations with Japan looking
toward stabilization of conditions in the Pacific have ceased and an
aggressive move by Japan is expected within the next few days." It was
supplied General Short in the November 27 warning, stating, "Japanese
future action unpredictable but hostile action possible at any moment."
The "one o'clock intercept", as previously indicated, was an unusual
piece of intelligence suggesting the distinct possibility that some
[350d] See committee record, pp. 6791-6793.
[350e] Committee record, pp. 8126, 8127. At another point, when asked if
his thought was that the Magic messages that were not sent Hawaii would
have been more important than the messages he did receive, General Short
said: "There were two that could hardly fail. The intercept which was
the bombing plan of Pearl Harbor and the message stating that the
ultimatum would be delivered at 1 p. m. which could have been sent to me
4 hours before the attack, and reached me 7 hours after the attack.
These two messages would have meant something to me." Committee record,
[360f] Id., at pp. 8126-8128.
[350g] See section " 'Ships in Harbor' Reports," supra.
234 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
Japanese military action would take place *somewhere* at 1 p. m. but it
did not reasonably point to Pearl Harbor any more than to any other
place in the Pacific. This intelligence indicated the need for
particular alertness at 1 p. m. to meet the dangers contemplated on the
basis of estimates already made as to where a Japanese attack might
The burden of the statements of both Admiral Kimmel and General Short to
the committee is that Washington withheld vital information from them.
In fact, Admiral Kimmel has charged that the Navy Department's handling
of Magic constituted an affirmative misrepresentation. On the basis of
the evidence before the committee, this charge is without foundation in
Both Hawaiian commanders all but ignore the fact that they are properly
chargeable with possessing far more vital intelligence indicating an
attack on Hawaii than was in the hands of anyone in the War or Navy
Departments. They had, among other things, correspondence with
Washington and plans revealing the possible dangers of air attack, the
warning dispatches, the code-destruction intelligence, radio
intelligence concerning the "lost" Japanese carriers, the Mori call, the
report of sighting and subsequent attack on a Japanese submarine in
close proximity to Pearl Harbor, and radar detection of the Japanese
raiding force over 130 miles from Oahu on the morning of December 7.
General Short assumed the Navy was conducting distant reconnaissance.
Admiral Kimmel assumed that the Army would alert its aircraft warning
service, antiaircraft guns, and fighter planes. From these assumptions
and the estimate and action taken on the basis of information available
to them, it is problematical as to what steps would have been taken by
the Hawaiian commanders had they received all of the intelligence which
they contend was withheld from them.
ESTIMATE OF THE SITUATION IN WASHINGTON
The evidence reflects that virtually everyone in Washington was
surprised Japan struck Pearl Harbor at the time she did. Among the
reasons for this conclusion was the apparent Japanese purpose to move
toward the south-the Philippines, Thailand, the Kra Peninsula; and the
feeling that Hawaii was a near-impregnable fortress that Japan would not
incur the dangers of attacking. The latter consideration necessarily
contemplated that Hawaii was alert and that the enemy would be met with
the full weight of Army and Navy power provided for defense. It is
apparent, however, that an attack on the fleet by Japan at some time was
regarded as a distinct possibility. The warning messages sent the
Hawaiian commanders contained orders requiring defensive measures
against this possibility. Admiral Turner, Director of War Plans in the
Navy Department, is the only officer in Washington in the higher
echelons who indicated a strong belief that Hawaii would be attacked-he
testified that he
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 235
regarded such an attack as a "50-50 chance."  Asked if he had
gained this impression around December 1 as a result of the Japanese;
ship-location reports,  he testified: 
"No. That had been the opinion all along, expressed by the Navy
Department expressed in Hawaii, expressed by the War Department,
expressed by everybody else, that there was a strong possibility that
there would be an attack, a raid, that is, against Hawaii. That was
merely following along the line the Navy officers and Army officers had
been thinking about for 25 years or more. There was no change."
When asked why, around November 27, if the Navy felt in this way about
the chances of an air raid on the fleet in Pearl Harbor some further
message was not sent suggesting this possibility, Admiral Turner stated:
"That had been in correspondence right along. The dispatch of November
27 fully covers it, in my opinion. I think on the 5th, the afternoon of
the 5th of December, after convassing [sic] the situation with officers
in my Division, I went to Admiral Ingersoll's office and we talked for
an hour as to what more the Navy Department could do to warn the forces
in the field, the fleets, what ought to be done, should we send any more
dispatches, or what. We came, both, to the conclusion that everything
had been done covering the entire situation that ought to be done and we
then proceeded into Admiral Stark's office, discussed the same question
with him for 15 minutes, and *it was the unanimous decision that the
orders that we had sent out for Admiral Kimmel to take a defensive
deployment were were sufficient*.
"*What was he going to take a defensive deployment against Just one
thing. That the meat of that dispatch. It is all in there."
The foregoing thoughts expressed by Admiral Turner characterized the
feelings of all the ranking officers of the War and Navy Departments:
*that the Hawaiian commanders had been adequately alerted to all
contingencies*. Admiral Stark stated, "We considered we had fully
alerted them (referring to the 'war warning' of November 27) with the
directives which were given both by the Army and by ourselves * * * We
felt we were fully alerted. Our plans were ready, if
 It is to be noted that the record clearly indicates that Admiral
Turner's estimate of a possible attack on Hawaii was not based on any
intelligence which he possessed indicating such an attack but rather on
his personal appraisal of possible Japanese action.
In this connection Captain McCollum said: "I was not surprised at the
Japanese attack, sir. I was astonished at the success attained by that
attack, sir. * * * I do not mean by that statement to imply that I had
any knowledge that the Japanese were going to attack Pearl Harbor, and I
wish to state categorically that there was no bit of intelligence that I
had at my disposal that definitely to my mind indicated at the Japanese
would attack Pearl Harbor, but I had * * * for many years felt that in
the event an outbreak of hostilities between the United States and Japan
that the Japanese would make a very finite attempt to strike the fleet
at or near the commencement time of those hostilities." Committee
record, pp. 9259, 9260.
The following committee examination reflects the feeling of Captain
McCollum with respect to a possible Japanese attack on our fleet:
Question: "And you always felt that if the Japs were going to strike
with her fleets the place to start was by attacking our fleet?"
Captain McCollum: "That is correct."
Question: "The place they would start would be by attacking the fleet."
Captain McCollum: "They not only would do that, but that there was
historical precedent, if the Japanese wished to start a war with us.
Their war with China in 1895 was started that way; their war with Russia
in 1907 was started that way; their war against Germany in Tsingtao in
1914 was started in that way. * * * Attacking their fleet and timing a
declaration of war on presentation of the final notes." Committee
record, pp. 9275, 9276.
 Radio Intelligence concerning the "lost" Japanese carriers.
 Committee record, p. 5200.
 Id., at p 5201.
236 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
war broke, in all theaters."  General Marshall said, "In our
opinion the commanders had been alerted."  As expressed by Mr.
"We assumed that when he (General Short) had been warned that hostile
action was possible at any moment, it would not be necessary to repeat
that warning over and over again during the ensuing days. The fact was
of course that General Short did receive, not only from Washington but
from other sources, repeated intelligence of the impending crisis."
Captain McCollum, who had suggested (not knowing the "war warning" had
been sent) an additional warning dispatch, stated in referring to the
dispatch sent Admiral Kimmel on November 27: 
"It does not come in the life of most naval officers to receive or see a
message containing such words and my personal feeling is that a message
containing the information "This is a war warning," indicated clearly
that the Department expected a war to break out there at any moment from
"* * * I think that a commander to whom such a message as that is
addressed must assume that war is going to break out over his forces and
take the steps necessary to cover it."
The consummate confidence that field commanders were adequately alert on
the basis of dispatches sent them is manifested by the reluctance of
Admiral Stark to dispatch a message based on the "one o'clock
intercept." As stated by General Marshall: "I asked him if he had read
the final message referring to one o'clock. He stated that he had, and I
proposed an immediate message to all theaters concerned. *Admiral Stark
hesitated, because he said (he) had alerted them all and he was afraid
of confusing them further*." 
As indicated, the record reflects the judgment of responsible officers
in both the War and Navy Departments that they had fully and I
adequately alerted our military outposts before December 7.  We
believe that Admiral Kimmel and General Short received sufficient
information to justify the expectation that they would be fully alert to
the implications of their military responsibilities in Hawaii. In this
connection it is to be noted that all other outpost commanders,
receiving the warning messages of November 27 in substantially the same
form as did Admiral Kimmel and General Short, took full and ample
measures to effect a state of readiness commensurate with the fact that
war was imminent. Hawaii was the *only* outpost that failed to institute
a proper alert.
 Id., at pp. 13733, 13747.
 Id., at pp. 13792, 13793.
 see Mr. Stimson's statement, committee record p. 14398.
 Committee record, pp. 9194, 9195, 9281, 9282. McCollum said: "I
had been given to understand that they (the Fleet) had been thoroughly
alerted * * * and on their toes." Committee record, p. 9156.
 Army Pearl Harbor Board (top secret) record, pages 7, 8.
 General Miles said: "G-2 was charged with the dissemination of
information. The essential information contained in the Chief of Staff's
November 27 message, that hostilities might occur at any time on the
initiative of the Japanese, held good right up to December 7. The
information emphasized the increasing tension of the crisis.
"But these things were known in Hawaii. *That Fortress, like a sentinel
on post had been warned of the danger which was its sole reason for
being. Anything else was considered to be redundant*." Committee record,
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 237
NATURE OF RESPONSIBILITIES
In seeking to make an assessment of responsibilities for the Pearl
Harbor disaster, apart from that which is forever Japan's, it is
imperative that the duties and obligations existing in Hawaii be placed
in the proper perspective with respect to those attaching to Washington.
She responsibility of the commander in the field with his well-defined
scope of activity is manifestly to be distinguished from that of the
officer in Washington who is charged with directing the over-all
operations of the military on a global basis.
DUTIES IN HAWAII
It has been a cardinal principle of military theory to select capable
commanders for our outposts, give them broad directives,  and leave
to their discretion and good judgment the implementation of the
Departmental mandate consonant with their more intimate and detailed
familiarity with the peculiar problems existing in their particular
commands.  Admiral Kimmel and General Short were selected because
of their impeccable records for two of the most important field commands
of the Navy and Army-Commander in Chief of the Pacific Fleet and
Commanding General of the Hawaiian Department these two officers were
primarily and fundamentally responsible-they were the men to whom
Washington and the Nation were properly entitled to look-for the defense
of the Hawaiian Coastal frontier.
With respect to Hawaii and the fleet, theirs were the obligations to
plan for war, to train for war, and to be alerted for war when it came.
The first two of these obligations they discharged in an exemplary
[manner but in the case of the third, alertness for war, they failed.
 All of the intelligence, thought, and energies of the field
commander are to be devoted to his command. He is to apply all
information and intelligence received to his particular situation. He is
not privileged to think or contemplate that he will not be attacked. On
the contrary, he is to assume and to expect that his particular post
will be attacked. He cannot wholly assume that others will inform him
 It is to be recalled, as heretofore pointed out, that Admiral
Kimmel said: "* * * the Department itself is not too well informed as to
the local situation, particularly with regard to the status of current
outlying island development, thus making it even more necessary that the
Commander-in-Chief, Pacific Fleet be guided by *broad policy and
objective rather than by categorical instructions*." Letter from Admiral
Kimmel to Admiral Stark, dated May 26, 1941. See committee exhibit No.
 Referring to the plans for the defense of the Hawaiian Coastal
Frontier, Admiral Turner said: "After reading these splendid plans that
had been sent in by the Commander in Chief, and by the Fourteenth Naval
District, why, my feeling was that these people knew their business.
They knew what to do about it, probably a lot more than I did, or the
rest of us here, because they were the ones that were on the firing
line." Committee record, p. 5211. See also testimony of General Gerow,
committee record, p. 2719.
 In striking contrast with the failure to effect adequate readiness
in Hawaii is the manner in which the Russians prepared to meet in June
and July of 1941 the possibility of a Japanese thrust against the Soviet
Union. An intercepted dispatch from Vladivostok to Tokyo on July 3,
1941, stated: "Since the beginning of the German-Soviet war the naval
authorities here have tightened up on watch and are engaged in naval
preparations by enforcing various exercises to meet *any eventuality*.
However, naval exercises are limited to only one section of the force
for there are many ships which are undergoing repairs. *Evidently the
preparations are intended* for defense against Japan." Committee exhibit
No. 2, p. 125. See also committee record pp. 7509-7512.
238 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
when and where the foe will strike. He is "like a sentinel on duty in
the face of the enemy. His fundamental duties are clear and precise. It
is not the duty of the outpost commander to speculate or rely on the
possibilities of the enemy attacking at some other outpost instead of
his own. It is his duty to meet him at his post at any time and to make
the best possible fight that can be made against him with the weapons
with which he has been supplied." 
The commanders in Hawaii were clearly and unmistakably warned of war
with Japan. They were given orders and possessed information that the
entire Pacific area was fraught with danger. They failed to carry out
these orders and to discharge their basic and ultimate responsibilities.
They failed to defend the fortress they commanded-their citadel was
taken by surprise. Aside from any responsibilities that may appear to
rest in Washington, the ultimate and direct responsibility for failure
to engage the Japanese on the morning of December 7 with every weapon at
their disposal rests essentially and properly with the Army and Navy
commands in Hawaii whose duty it was to meet the enemy against which
they had been warned.
DUTIES IN WASHINGTON
The Chief of Staff of the Army and the Chief of Naval Operations of the
Navy had the over-all responsibility for supervision of our military and
naval operations and establishments everywhere, including Hawaii. Theirs
was the obligation of determining that all of the equipment available
was supplied the field commander which would assist him in discharging
his responsibilities.  In supplying equipment it was their duty to
consider the demands for material from many quarters in the light of the
commitments and interests of the United States-to estimate where the
most dangerous and likely point of enemy attack might be-and then to
effect dispositions which in their best judgment most nearly satisfied
the exigencies of the hour. They discharged this duty to the best of
They had the duty of alerting our outposts in view of the critical
situation in our relations with Japan in the days before December 7 and
of informing them of probable enemy action.  In the dispatch of
November 27, sent Admiral Kimmel and Admiral Hart, the commander in
chief of the Asiatic Fleet, there was outlined what at the time was
regarded and appeared to be the major strategic effort of the enemy. The
Japanese major effort did follow the course outlined in the dispatch.
Pearl Harbor was not known to be a point of Japanese attack but it was
known that such an attack was a possibility and both responsible
commanders in Hawaii were accordingly ordered to take action
contemplated to meet this possibility.
 See statement of Mr. Stimson, committee record, p. 14406.
 See committee record, pp. 2764-2771; 5594, 5595. Also see
committee exhibit No. 42.
 Admiral Turner said "My function was to give the major strategic
over all picture for the use of my superiors and disseminate that."
Committee record, p. 5074.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 239
The officers in the intelligence and war plans divisions of the War and
Navy Departments handling matters in the Pacific had a *particular*
responsibility with respect to the magic intelligence just as the
Hawaiian commanders had a particular responsibility for the defense f
the fleet and the Hawaiian coastal frontier. It was the duty of these
officers to evaluate and disseminate the magic in the form of estimates,
as originally obtained, or otherwise. This responsibility they failed to
discharge with that his degree of skill and imagination which this
intelligence warranted. 
In the case of the War Plans Division of the War Department, once it had
warned General Short of hostilities, issued order in contemplation of
this contingency, and directed him to *report measures taken*, it
thereby assumed responsibility for reviewing the report of action and
advising the commanding general in the event the measures taken by him
were not in accordance with those desired.
While the report submitted by General Short was ambiguous and
disarmingly terse, it was the duty of the War Plans Division through the
exercise of proper supervision to require a reply reflecting with
clarity that there had been satisfactory compliance with the
departmental orders. 
Hawaii was but one of many points of concert to General Marshall, the
Chief of Staff, and Admiral Stark, the Chief of Naval Operations, stated
by the Chief of Staff, "the only place we had any assurance about was
Hawaii, and for that reason we had less concern about Hawaii because we
had worked on it very industriously, we had a tremendous amount of
correspondence about it, and we felt reasonably secure at that one
point."  Theirs was the obligation of mapping the strategy of
global war, of advising and counseling the President and others on
military and naval matters, of following and encouraging the progress of
preparation for defense in the event of war, of outlining and justifying
to the Congress the manifold needs of the Army and Navy, of over-all
responsibility for many military and naval outposts and interests, of
disposing and allocating the scanty
 As expressed by Mr. Stimson: "A keener and more imaginative
appreciation on the part of some of the officers in the War and Navy
Departments of the significance of some of the information might have
led to a suspicion of an attack specifically on Pearl Harbor. I do not
think that certain officers in the War Department functioned in these
respects with sufficient skill. At all times it must be borne in mind,
however, that it is easy to criticize individuals in the light of
hindsight, and very difficult to recreate fairly the entire situation
and information with which the officers were required to deal at the
time of the event." See statement of the Secretary of War with respect
to the report of the Army Pearl Harbor Board, committee exhibit No. 157.
 In this connection, however, the marked distinction between the
character of the responsibility resting on the War Plans Division and
that reposing in General Short was expressed by Mr. Stimson:
"It must clearly be borne in mind that in November and December 1941 the
responsibilities of the War Plans Division covered many fields and many
theaters. Their preoccupation with the theaters most likely be
threatened, such as the Philippines toward which the Japanese activities
then appeared to be pointed, may be subject to criticism in the light of
the subsequent disaster, but it is understandable. All signs pointed to
an attack in that direction, and they were exercising particular care
with respect to that theater. Their conduct must be viewed in an
entirely different light from that of the theater commander, such as
General Short, who was like a sentinel on post and whose attention and
vigilance must be entirely concentrated on the single position which he
has been chosen to defend and whose alertness must not be allowed be
distracted by consideration of other contingencies in respect to which
he is not responsible." See statement of the Secretary of War with
respect to the report of the Army Pearl Harbor Board Committee exhibit
 Committee record, p. 13793.
240 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
materials of war consistent with the overwhelming demands and
requirements from many quarters, and of performing the innumerable
functions of the Chief of Staff and Chief of Naval Operations in a
democracy that was all too slowly preparing itself against the
inevitable day of war.  Such diversity and magnitude of
responsibilities is to be distinguished from that of the outpost
commander with his singleness of purpose and well-defined sphere of
activity. It was the duty of General Marshall and Admiral Stark to alert
our military and naval garrisons which they attempted to do and felt
assured they had done. To superimpose the administrative burden of
supervising details would be to enmesh them in such a confusing and
bewildering network of detail as to defeat the very purpose for which
the positions of Chief of Staff and Chief of Naval Operations were
UNITY 0F COMMAND
The evidence adduced in the course of the various Pearl Harbor
investigations reveals the complete inadequacy of command by *mutual
cooperation* where decisive action is of the essence. Both the Army and
Navy commanders in Hawaii failed to coordinate and integrate their
combined facilities for defense in the crucial days between November 27
and December 7, 1941. While they had been able over a period of time to
conceive admirable plans for the defense of the Hawaiian Coastal
Frontier consistent with the system of mutual cooperation, when the time
came for the implementation of these plans they remained hollow and
empty contracts that were never executed. Had the responsible commanders
conferred together in such manner as to reach joint decisions consonant
with their plans, the system of mutual cooperation would have proved
adequate. It is clear, however, that this system presents unnecessary
and inevitable opportunities for personal failures and shortcomings. The
ubiquitous tendency to "let George do it," to assume the other fellow
will take care of the situation, is an inseparable part of command by
The tragic assumptions made by Admiral Kimmel and General Short
concerning what the other was doing are a manifestation of this fact.
Each was the victim of the natural human reluctance to pry into what is
regarded as another's business. [370a] The commander in chief assumed
that the Army would be on a full alert-the antiaircraft, the aircraft
warning service, and the interceptor command-yet he
 Mr. Stimson said: "Our General Staff officers were working under a
terrific pressure in the face of a global war which they felt was
probably imminent. Yet they were surrounded, outside of the offices and
almost throughout the country, by a spirit of isolationism and disbelief
in danger which now seems incredible. * * * The officers of the Army
were then trying to do their duty in the deadening, if not actually
hostile, atmosphere of a nation that was not awake to its danger. We are
now engaged in passing judgment upon their actions in the wholly
different atmosphere of a nation which has suffered some of the horrors
of the greatest and most malignant war in history. In my opinion, it
would be highly unjust to them if this complete difference of atmosphere
was not given the weight which it deserves." Statement of Mr. Stimson to
the Committee. Committee record, pp. 14410, 14411.
[370a] See testimony of General Short, Committee record, pp. 8122, 8123.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 241
did not inquire to determine whether this was the case, apparently
because it might not "sit very well" with General Short.  The,
commanding general assumed that the Navy would be conducting
reconnaissance which would afford him adequate warning in order properly
to alert his command. Yet he did not inquire as to whether, the Navy was
conducting the reconnaissance upon which he was relying or his
protection, presumably because he felt such an inquiry might be
"resented" by Admiral Kimmel. 
The conduct of operations in this state of joint oblivion was possible n
a command by *mutual cooperation*; but none of these false and
unwarranted assumptions could have obtained under *unity of command*.
Under the latter system a single commander would have been charged with
complete responsibility; all of the warnings, intelligence, and orders
would have been his to interpret, estimate, and implement; it would have
been his duty only to effect a state of readiness commensurate with the
realities of the situation. Conceivably, a single commander might have
arrived at the same estimate as did Admiral Kimmel and General Short;
namely, that Hawaii would not be attacked. But such a decision would
have been clear-cut and devoid f all the anomalous and incompatible
assumptions that are in strange contradiction of the estimate made by
the Hawaiian commanders that their outpost was safe. He would not have
arrived at a conclusion concerning the defensive measures required on a
fallacious assumption with respect to the decisions and defensive
measures of someone else, nor could he have interpreted the same order
at once in two different and inconsistent ways.
Furthermore, in a command by mutual cooperation there is the unfailing
likelihood of conflicting and overlapping prerogatives. In the case of
the plans for the defense of the Hawaiian Coastal Frontier, it was the
joint mission of the Army and Navy to hold Oahu as a main outlying naval
base, each being specifically charged with supporting the other. It was
necessary that the local commanders jointly agree upon the existence of
the appropriate emergency as a condition precedent to the detailed
allocation of specific missions as between the two services. The Navy
was primarily responsible for distant reconnaissance and long-range
attacks against hostile vessels, while the Army was charged with short-
range defense. In the case of each of these defensive measures, one
service was charged with supporting the forces of the other service
having primary responsibility; and particularly, in the case of air
operations, the service having the primary responsibility was to control
the available planes of the other service. This was a sliding and
shifting arrangement with respect to primary responsibility depending on
the nature of the attack. The mutual agreement required by such
operations would necessarily be forth-
 See Roberts Commission record, p. 631.
 See Army Pearl Harbor Board record, p. 363.
242 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
coming only when a particular type of attack was sufficiently imminent
as to suggest the advisability of the Army or the Navy, as the case
might be, assuming primary responsibility to meet the attack. 
*The completely ineffective liaison between the Army and the Navy in
Hawaii at a time when the fullest exchange of intelligence was
absolutely imperative dictates that military and naval intelligence,
particularly, must be consolidated*.  The extraordinarily anomalous
situation of the one hand not knowing what the other hand knew or was
doing should never be permitted to exist again.
Invocation of unity of command was within the scope of the authority of
the responsible commanders in Hawaii, upon agreement as to the service
that should exercise command, [374a] or of the Secretaries of War and
Navy, acting jointly.  Inasmuch as there was a complete failure of
the system of mutual cooperation on December 7, 1941, and unity of
command had not been effected by or imposed upon the Hawaiian
commanders, it is proper to inquire as to the reason for unity of
command not having been invoked at least as soon as it was known that
hostilities were possible at any moment.
The evidence reflects that during the period from November 27 to
December 7 the leading subject of conferences between Admiral Kimmel and
General Short was the question and near-dispute as to whether the Army
or the Navy should exercise command over the islands of Wake and Midway
after the Marines on these islands were relieved by Army troops. 
No agreement was concluded in this regard before the outbreak of war. If
neither would agree to the
 See section, supra, concerning plans for the defense of the
Hawaiian Coastal Frontier Part III this report.
 *General Marshall said he thought unity of consolidation (sic) or
centralization of military and naval intelligence was very necessary*.
Committee record, p. 2966.
[374a] Admiral Kimmel testified that he never had any discussions with
the commanding general of the Hawaiian Department on the desirability of
putting unity of command into effect. He said he would not have effected
unity of command, or accepted responsibility for the Army actions,
without reference to the Navy Department. See Navy Court of Inquiry
record, pp. 296, 297.
 See committee exhibit No. 44. General Gerow said: "A fact
frequently lost sight of in consideration of the method of coordination
under the principle of mutual cooperation is that although the major
operation is being conducted under that principle, *joint operations
subordinate thereto may still be conducted under the principle of unity
of command if so agreed to by the Army and Navy commanders concerned*.
This method is particularly applicable to joint operations by forces
having similar combat characteristics, such as the air forces of the two
services." See memorandum prepared by General Gerow for Chief of Staff
dated November 17, 1941. Committee exhibit No. 48.
 Admiral W. W. Smith testified: "He (Admiral Kimmel) had a shock,
though, in the week preceding Pearl Harbor, when we had orders from the
Navy Department, and General Short had orders from the War Department,
to prepare a plan immediately for bringing all the marines off the
outlying islands, and replacing them with soldiers and with Army planes,
and, as I remember it, practically the entire week before Pearl Harbor
was spent with the two Staffs together. The Army was undecided whether
to put P-39's or P-40's on these islands. We told them that any planes
they put on Wake would remain their for the duration, in case of war,
because they would have to be taken off from a carrier and could not
come back, and we had no means of putting a ship in there to bring them
off, and during the discussion on this with General Short and his staff,
the commanding General of the Army Air Force (General Martin) and
Admiral Pye were present, and also Admiral Wilson Brown, the War Plans
officer, the Operations Officers and I believe Admiral Bloch. Admiral
Kimmel said, "What can I expect of Army fighters on Wake?" And General
Martin replied, 'We do not allow them to go more than fifteen miles off
shore.' That was a shock all of us and Admiral Kimmel's reply was,
'Then, they will be no damn good to me.' The exchange was never made
because the war broke before-hand. *The only dispute between the Army
and Navy over that exchange was that General Short said, 'If I have the
man these islands, I shall have to command them.' Admiral Kimmel
replied, 'No, that won't do. If the Army commanded one of the islands, I
wouldn't be able to get a ship into one of the ports,' or words to that
effect, and General Short said, 'Mind you, I do not want to man these
islands, I think they are better manned by Marines, but if I man them, I
must command them.' That was as near to a dispute between General Short
and Admiral Kimmel as I ever saw, but the plan was made and submitted
but never carried out*," Hart inquiry record, pp. 40, 41.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 243
other's commanding Wake or Midway, it is not in the least surprising
unexpected that neither one of the commanders would have agreed to
subordinate himself and his entire command to the other.
In the case of Washington, the matter of establishing unity of command
at our outposts was under consideration and discussion by the War and
Navy Departments throughout the year 1941 and especially during the few
weeks prior to December 7.  No decision, however, was reached
concerning unity of command at Hawaii or at any of our outposts until
the responsible officials were confronted by war with powerful
adversaries on two fronts and the barrier of departmental prerogative
had been severely jolted by the Pearl [arbor disaster. The Joint Board
of the Army and Navy during 1941 ad considered specific proposals for
unity of command as made by each of the services but prior to December 7
no effective agreement was reached as to which service should exercise
command at a particular outpost. It generally appears, however, that it
was agreed le system of mutual cooperation in the Caribbean, at Panama
and t Hawaii should be replaced by unity of command. The Navy proposed
that command in the Caribbean be vested in the Navy; at 'Panama in the
Army, except when major naval forces were based ere; and at Hawaii in
the Navy, except when no major naval forces ere based there.  The
Army, on the other hand, proposed unity of command in all coastal
frontiers, command to rest in the Army except hen a major portion of the
fleet was operating against comparable hostile forces within the range
of possible support by Army aviation and when the Army and Navy
commanders should agree to transfer command from one to the other. 
In view of these conflicting proposals following virtually a year of
discussion, General Gerow, chief of War Plans in the War Department,
recommended to the Chief of Staff on November 17, 1941, that the system
of command in the outposts remain by mutual cooperation, thereby
suggesting abandonment of the idea of unity of command.  In
testifying before the committee, General Gerow explained his action by
stating he thought the only way to have effective unity of command was
for the heads of the Army and Navy to say that "So and so is in command,
and he is in command from now on." He observed that  "You cannot
vary that command
 See committee record pp. 2749-2761, also 2963 et seq.
 Committee record pp. 2750-2757 see also committee exhibit No 48.
 Id. General Gerow recommended: "That coordination of joint
operations in the Caribbean, Panama and Hawaiian Coastal Frontiers
continue to be effected by mutual cooperation. If this recommendation is
approved such a proposal will be discussed with the Navy section of the
Joint Planning Committee." See memorandum prepared by General Gerow for
Chief of Staff dated November 17, 1941. Committee exhibit No. 48.
Referring to this memorandum, General Marshall stated in a memorandum
for General Gerow dated December 5, 1941: "I would like this matter of
Coordination of Command discussed with the Naval section of the Joint
Planning committee. However I think it is important that a general
policy, or what might be called an explanation, should first be decided
on, expressed in carefully considered sentences as to the *application*
of unity of command.
"A discussion of this runs through a series of paragraphs on your
memorandum and you have covered it orally to me, but no where is it
presented in a concise form." Committee exhibit No. 48A.
 Committee record, p. 2757.
244 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK:
from day to day depending on what the operation is. One man must be
responsible for preparing that place for operation, and he must be
responsible for commanding it after he has prepared it." He pointed out
that the joint Army-Navy planning committee had contemplated an
arrangement whereby command would shift back and forth from the Army to
the Navy and from the Navy to the Army depending on the nature of attack
or defense.  General Gerow said that he thought the system of
mutual cooperation would be better than such a continual switching of
command.  He commented:
"I did not think either the Army or Navy Planning Group would agree to
say wholeheartedly 'You take everything and it will be agreeable to us'.
Neither would agree to that."  He agreed that it would be necessary
that "somebody at the top had to knock their heads together and tell
them what to do."  General Marshall epitomized the essentially
human proclivities characterizing the situation: 
"I have said this before: I will repeat it again. *It is a very simple
thing to have unity of command if you give it to the other man*. But
that also applied in all of our dealings with the British and among
ourselves and always will continue to be so."
The ultimate result was that no agreement was reached between the War
and Navy Departments before Pearl Harbor for the establishment of unity
of command in our military and naval outposts. The factors and
considerations attending eventual invocation of unity of command were
expressed by the Chief of Staff in a letter dated December 20, 1941, to
General Short's successor, Gen. Delos C. Emmons: 
"Instructions to the Army and Navy were issued a few days ago assigning
units of command to the Navy in Hawaii. At the same time unity of
command was assigned to the Army in Panama.
"For your confidential information, this action was taken in the
following circumstances: In the first place, the Secretary of War and
the Secretary of the Navy were determined that there should be no
question of future confusion as to responsibility. Further, the efforts
I have been making for more than a year to secure unity of command in
various critical regions have been unavailing. *All sorts of Naval
details, such as the operations of ships and submarines, the
coordination of efforts to locate purely Naval objectives and similar
matters had been raised in objection to Army control wherever that was
proposed. I must say at the same time that some off the Army staff
brought up somewhat similar objections to Naval control*. Both Stark and
I were struggling to the same end, but until this crash of December 7th
the difficulties seemed, at least under peacetime conditions, almost
insurmountable. However, the two decisions I have just referred to have
been made and further ones are in process of being made, all of which I
feel will add immeasurably to our security, whatever the local
embarrassments. Also, I regard these as merely stepping stones to larger
decisions involved in our relations with Allies.
"I am giving you this information in order that you may better
appreciate the problem and, therefore, be better prepared to assist me
by endeavoring to work with Nimitz in complete understanding.
 Id., at p. 2758.
 Committee record pp. 2962, 2963.
 See committee exhibit No. 48; also committee record pp. 2759-
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 245
"Whatever difficulties arise that cannot be adjusted locally, should be
brought our attention here for consideration by Admiral Stark and
myself. *These days are too perilous for personal feelings in any way to
"This is a very hasty note, but I want General McCoy to take it off with
him is morning, You have my complete confidence and I will do everything
possible to support you."
The foregoing considerations evince more than mere reluctance and
procrastination toward effecting action by command rather than by joint
agreement; they reveal that inherent in our system of separate services
there exists the basic deficiency of conflicting interests which
precipitate serious and unnecessary obstacles to the solution of
pressing military problems. It is to be necessarily noted, however, that
while considering the advisability of unity of command, Washington was
assuming that the system of mutual cooperation was working within its
limitations and that local commanders were fully discharging their
responsibilities. It was only in the wake of the Pearl Harbor disaster
at the inherent and intolerable weaknesses of command by mutual
cooperation were exposed. 
As earlier indicated, the failure to integrate and coordinate Army-Navy
efforts in Hawaii appears to have been attributable to a feeling n the
part of each commander that he would intrude upon the prerogatives of
the other and thereby invite similar intrusion if he inquired as to what
the sister service was doing. In Washington, the failure to impose unity
of command was occasioned by the inability of the Army and the Navy as
entities to agree upon a basis for unified command.
THE "WYMAN MATTER"
The Committee has carefully reviewed the investigation conducted by the
Army Pearl Harbor Board with respect to the activities of Col. Theodore
Wyman, Jr., while district engineer in the Hawaiian Department, insofar
as his activities may have relationship to the Pearl Harbor disaster.
 The Army Pearl Harbor Board concluded from the evidence that Wyman
performed the duties of district engineer in a wholly unsatisfactory
manner. Under his administration, engineering and construction work in
the Hawaiian Department was defective and was characterized by delays.
The activities of Wyman and his associates were not fully inquired into
by the Committee inasmuch as they did not appear to have contributed in
any material or proximate manner to the disaster for
 In the course of counsel's examination, General Marshall was
asked: "Without asking you any questions about the unity of command,
complete unity of command generally in the Army and Navy Departments,
limiting it to the question of posts like Hawaii, or Panama, for
instance, do you want to express any views as to the wisdom of
maintaining such unity of command in peacetime as compared with war?"
The Chief of Staff replied "*I think it is an imperative necessity*."
 See in this regard the report of the Army Pearl Harbor Board,
Committee Exhibit No. 157.
246 PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
reasons heretofore set forth.  It is recommended, however, that the
Wyman matter be investigated by an appropriate committee of the Senate
or the House of Representatives.
THE PHILIPPINE ATTACK
The Committee has considered in the course of its proceedings the
Japanese attack on the Philippines on December 7, 1941, and has
concluded that this attack bears no relevant relationship to the
disaster at Pearl Harbor. In consequence, the Philippine attack was not
made the subject of detailed inquiry although the reader will find an
account of this attack in the committee's record. 
PRIOR INQUIRIES CONCERNING THE PEARL HARBOR ATTACK
We have not presumed to pass judgment on the nature of or charges of
unfairness  with respect to seven prior inquiries and
investigations of the Pearl Harbor attack, feeling that by conducting a
full and impartial hearing our report to the Congress along with the
Committee's record would present to the American people the material and
relevant facts of the disaster. The Committee does desire to observe,
however, that charges to the effect that the original report of the
Roberts Commission was abridged, modified, or amended, or portions
deleted were found to be without foundation in fact.  Prior
investigations were conducted during the course of the most devasta-
 As has been seen the disaster was the failure, with attendant
increase in personnel and material losses of the Army and Navy in Hawaii
to institute measures designed to detect an approaching enemy force, to
effect a state of readiness commensurate with the realization that war
was at hand, and to employ every facility at their command in repelling
 See in this regard, Committee record, pp., 14133-14173,
 In referring to the inquiry conducted by the Roberts Commission,
Admiral Kimmel has stated (Committee record, pp. 6809-6811):
(1) That he was told he was not on trial (Roberts Commission record, p.
(2) That he was not permitted to be present at the testimony of other
witnesses or to examine or cross-examine them;
(3) That the Roberts Commission was informed of or impressed with the
fact that Hawaii was given all of the information available to the Navy
Department (referring in this regard to committee record, pp. 4893-
(4) That it appeared the so-called Magic was freely discussed before the
Commission and in consequence the latter likely received the impression
that the intercepted Japanese diplomatic messages were either forwarded
by Washington by Admiral Kimmel or available to him in Hawaii.
Testifying before the committee, Justice Roberts stated:
(1) That the Commission's investigation was not intended to be a trial.
"This seemed to me a preliminary investigation, like a grand jury
investigation, and I did not think, for our report, that was to be taken
as precluding every one of the men mentioned in it from a defense before
his peers. In other words, you would not conduct a proceeding without
cross-examination and without publicity and call it a trial. *It was not
a trial. * * * It was an investigation and it was the formation of a
judgment to be handed the President*." (Committee record, pp. 8801,
(2) That, as indicated, one would not conduct a proceeding without
cross-examination and without publicity and call it a trial. He observed
the proceedings were closed and every witness asked to observe secrecy
for the reason "that there were questions of broken codes. We were
informed that the Army and Navy were getting invaluable information
every day, that the Japanese did not realize that their codes were
broken, and indeed the Navy was rather chary about even telling us about
the thing for fear there might be some leak from our Commission. Of
course, if we held open hearings there was a chance we might do a great
damage to our forces, our military program" (id., at pp. 8788, 8789).
(3) That the Roberts Commission knew outposts were not getting the
Magic. "We knew the commanders weren't given what was taken off the
breaking of the code" (id., at p. 8813).
(4) That "*We were never shown one of the Magic messages*" nor the
substance thereof (id., at pp. 8828, 8829) although the Commission did
know codes were being broken and generally what was obtained from the
traffic (id., at p. 8829; also pp. 8836, 8846).
 See testimony of Mr. Justice Roberts before the Committee.
Committee record, pp. 8779-8908.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 247
ing war in history and within the necessary limitations of secrecy
imposed by war and the national security. Public hearings concerning he
disaster were properly deferred until the cessation of hostilities; to
have done otherwise would have been to imperil the entire war effort.
Parties in interest during previous inquiries, who for necessary
security reasons did not have the full and ready access to information
throughout the war that may have been desired, did have such information
available for consideration before the Committee. Admiral Kimmel and
General Short, as well as others, have attested to the full, fair, and
impartial hearing which they were afforded by the Committee.
It is believed that with the additional evidence developed since VJ-Day
and the greater accessibility of witnesses, together with the greater
scope of inquiry conducted, we are in a much better position to form
proper estimates and conclusions concerning responsibilities elating to
the disaster than has heretofore been possible because of the proper and
necessary restrictions within which other inquiries: and investigations
were conducted during wartime.
Shortly after the disaster both Admiral Kimmel and General Short were
retired from active duty. Consideration was thereafter given by the War
and Navy Departments to the question of whether the errors made in
Hawaii justified proceedings by court martial. Admiral Kimmel and
General Short were requested in the interest of the nation's war effort
to waive their rights to plead the statute of limitations in bar of
trial by general court martial for the duration of the war and 6 months
thereafter.  Both these officers properly and commendably did so
waive their rights. It was the duty of the offices of the Judge Advocate
General of the Army and the Navy to consider the facts of the disaster
as relating to the responsibilities of he Hawaiian commanders, even
though after inquiry and deliberation it was determined that the errors
were errors of judgment and of derelictions of duty.
On the morning of December 7, 1941, Admiral Kimmel and General Short
were catapulted by the Empire of Japan into the principal roles in one
of the most publicized tragedies of all time. That improper and
incorrect deductions were drawn by some members of the public, with
consequent suffering and mental anguish to both officers, cannot e
questioned, just as erroneous conclusions were made by others with
respect to the extent and nature of responsibility in Washington. But
this is the result of the magnitude of public interest and speculation
inspired by the disaster and not the result of mistreatment of anyone.
The situation prevailing at Pearl Harbor on the morning of December 7 in
the wake of the Japanese attack cast everyone, whether immediately or
remotely concerned, beneath the white light of world scrutiny.
 See Committee exhibits Nos. 170,171.
PEARL HARBOR ATTACK 248
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