Warnings do no harm and might do inexpressible good
- 27 January 1941, Dr. Ricardo Shreiber, the Peruvian envoy in Tokyo told Max Bishop, third
secretary of the US embassy that he had just learned from his intelligence sources that there was a war plan
involving a surprise attack on Pearl Harbor. This information was sent to the State Department and Naval
Intelligence and to Admiral Kimmel at Hawaii.
- 31 March 1941 - A Navy report by Bellinger and Martin predicted that if Japan made war on the US,
they would strike Pearl Harbor without warning at dawn with aircraft from a maximum of 6 carriers. For years
Navy planners had assumed that Japan, on the outbreak of war, would strike the American fleet wherever it
was. The fleet was the only threat to Japan's plans. Logically, Japan couldn't engage in any major operation
with the American fleet on its flank. The strategic options for the Japanese were not unlimited.
- 10 July - US Military Attache Smith-Hutton at Tokyo reported Japanese Navy secretly practicing
aircraft torpedo attacks against capital ships in Ariake Bay. The bay closely resembles Pearl Harbor.
- July - The US Military Attache in Mexico forwarded a report that the Japanese were constructing
special small submarines for attacking the American fleet in Pearl Harbor, and that a training program then
under way included towing them from Japan to positions off the Hawaiian Islands, where they practiced
surfacing and submerging.
- 10 August 1941, the top British agent, code named "Tricycle", Dusko Popov, told the FBI of the
planned attack on Pearl Harbor and that it would be soon. The FBI told him that his information was "too
precise, too complete to be believed. The questionnaire plus the other information you brought spell out in
detail exactly where, when, how, and by whom we are to be attacked. If anything, it sounds like a trap." He
also reported that a senior Japanese naval person had gone to Taranto to collect all secret data on the
attack there and that it was of utmost importance to them. The info was given to Naval IQ.
- Early in the Fall, Kilsoo Haan, an agent for the Sino-Korean People's League, told Eric Severeid
of CBS that the Korean underground in Korea and Japan had positive proof that the Japanese were going to
attack Pearl Harbor before Christmas. Among other things, one Korean had actually seen the plans. In late
October, Haan finally convinced US Senator Guy Gillette that the Japanese were planning to attack in December
or January. Gillette alerted the State Department, Army and Navy Intelligence and FDR personally.
- 24 September 1941, the " bomb plot" message in J-19 code from Japan Naval Intelligence to Japan' s
consul general in Honolulu requesting grid of exact locations of ships pinpointed for the benefit of
bombardiers and torpedo pilots was deciphered. There was no reason to know the EXACT location of ships in
harbor, unless to attack them - it was a dead giveaway. Chief of War Plans Turner and Chief of Naval
Operations Stark repeatedly kept it and warnings based on it prepared by Safford and others from being passed
to Hawaii. The chief of Naval Intelligence Captain Kirk was replaced because he insisted on warning HI. It
was lack of information like this that lead to the exoneration of the Hawaii commanders and the blaming of
Washington for unpreparedness for the attack by the Army Board and Navy Court. At no time did the Japanese
ever ask for a similar bomb plot for any other American military installation. Why the Roosevelt
administration allowed flagrant Japanese spying on PH has never been explained, but they blocked 2
Congressional investigations in the fall of 1941 to allow it to continue. The bomb plots were addressed to
"Chief of 3rd Bureau, Naval General Staff", marked Secret Intelligence message, and given special
serial numbers, so their significance couldn't be missed. There were about 95 ships in port. The text was:
"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.)"
- Simple traffic analysis of the accelerated frequency of messages from various Japanese consuls gave a
another identification of war preparations, from Aug-Dec there were 6 messages from Seattle, 18 from Panama,
55 from Manila and 68 from Hawaii.
- Oct. - Soviet top spy Richard Sorge, the greatest spy in history, informed Kremlin that Pearl
Harbor would be attacked within 60 days. Moscow informed him that this was passed to the US. Interestingly,
all references to Pearl Harbor in the War Department's copy of Sorge's 32,000 word confession to the Japanese
were deleted. NY Daily News, 17 May 1951.
- 16 Oct. - FDR grossly humiliated Japan's Ambassador and refused to meet with Premier Konoye to
engineer the war party, lead by General Tojo, into power in Japan.
- 1 Nov. - JN-25 Order to continue drills against anchored capital ships to prepare to "ambush and
completely destroy the US enemy." The message included references to armor-piercing bombs and 'near surface
- 13 Nov. - The German Ambassador to US, Dr. Thomsen an anti-Nazi, told US IQ that Pearl Harbor
would be attacked.
- 14 Nov. - Japanese Merchant Marine was alerted that wartime recognition signals would be in effect
- 22 Nov. - Tokyo said to Ambassador Nomura in Washington about extending the deadline for
negotiations to November 29: "...this time we mean it, that the deadline absolutely cannot be changed. After
that things are automatically going to happen."
- CIA Director Allen Dulles told people that US was warned in mid-November that the Japanese Fleet had
sailed east past Tokyo Bay and was going to attack Pearl Harbor. CIA FOIA
- 23 Nov. - JN25 order - "The first air attack has been set for 0330 hours on X-day." (Tokyo time or
8 A.M. Honolulu time)
- 25 Nov. - British decrypted the Winds setup message sent Nov. 19. The US decoded it Nov. 28. It
was a J-19 Code message that there would be an attack and that the signal would come over Radio Tokyo as a
weather report - rain meaning war, east (Higashi) meaning US.
- 25 Nov. - Secretary of War Stimson noted in his diary "FDR stated that we were likely to be
attacked perhaps as soon as next Monday." FDR asked: "the question was how we should maneuver them into the
position of firing the first shot without too much danger to ourselves. In spite of the risk involved,
however, in letting the Japanese fire the first shot, we realized that in order to have the full support of
the American people it was desirable to make sure that the Japanese be the ones to do this so that there
should remain no doubt in anyone's mind as to who were the aggressors."
- 25 Nov. - Navy Department ordered all US trans-Pacific shipping to take the southern route. PHH
12:317 (PHH = 1946 Congressional Report, vol. 12, page 317) ADM Turner testified "We sent the traffic down to
the Torres Straight, so that the track of the Japanese task force would be clear of any traffic." PHH 4:1942
- 25 Nov. - Yamamoto radioed this order in JN-25: " (a) The task force, keeping its movements
strictly secret and maintaining close guard against submarines and aircraft, shall advance into Hawaiian
waters and upon the very opening of hostilities, shall attack the main force of the United States Fleet in
Hawaii and deal it a mortal blow. The raid is planned for dawn on X-day -- exact date to be given by later
order. (b) Should the negotiations with the US prove successful, the task force shall hold itself in
readiness forthwith to return and reassemble. (c) The task force will move out of Hitokappu Wan on the
morning of 26 November and advance to the standing-by position on the afternoon of 4 December and speedily
complete refueling." ( Order to sail - scan from the PHA Congressional Hearings
Report, vol 1 p 180, transcript p 437-8) This was decoded by the British on November 25 and the Dutch on
November 27. When it was decoded by the US is a national secret, however, on November 26 Naval Intelligence
reported the concentration of units of the Japanese fleet at an unknown port ready for offensive action.
- 26 Nov. 3 A.M. - Churchill sent an urgent secret message to FDR, probably containing above
message. This message caused the greatest agitation in DC. Of Churchill's voluminous correspondence with FDR,
this is the only message that has not been released (on the grounds that it would damage national security).
Stark testified that "On November 26 there was received specific evidence of the Japanese intention to wage
offensive war against Great Britain and the United States." C.I.A. Director William Casey, who was in the OSS
in 1941, in his book THE SECRET WAR AGAINST HITLER, p 7, wrote "The British had sent word that a Japanese
fleet was steaming east toward Hawaii." Washington, in an order of Nov 26 as a result of the "first shot"
meeting the day before, ordered both US aircraft carriers, the Enterprise and the Lexington out of Pearl
Harbor "as soon as practicable." This order included stripping Pearl of 50 planes or 40 percent of its
already inadequate fighter protection. In response to Churchill's message, FDR secretly cabled him that
afternoon - "Negotiations off. Services expect action within two weeks." Note that the only way FDR could
have linked negotiations with service action, let alone have known the timing of the action, was if he had
the message to sail. In other words, the only service action contingent on negotiations was Pearl Harbor.
- 26 Nov. - the "most fateful document " was Hull's ultimatum that Japan
must withdraw from Indochina and all China. FDR's Ambassador to Japan called this "The document that touched
the button that started the war."
- 27 Nov. - Secretary of War Stimson sent a confused and confusing hostile
action possible or DO-DON'T warning. The Navy Court found this message directed attention away from Pearl
Harbor, rather than toward it. One purpose of the message was to mislead HI into believing negotiations were
continuing. The Army which could not do reconnaissance was ordered to and the Navy which could was ordered
not to. The Army was ordered on sabotage alert, which specifically precluded attention to outside threat.
Navy attention was misdirected 5000 miles from HI. DC repeated, no less than three times as a direct
instruction of the President, "The US desires that Japan commit the first overt act Period." It was unusual
that FDR directed this warning, a routine matter, to Hawaii which is proof that he knew other warnings were
not sent. A simple question--what Japanese "overt act" was FDR expecting at Pearl Harbor? He ordered sabotage
prevented and subs couldn't enter, that leaves air attack. The words "overt act" disclose FDR's intent - not
just that Japan be allowed to attack but that they inflict damage on the fleet. This FDR order to allow a
Japanese attack was aid to the enemy - explicit treason.
- 29 Nov.- Hull sat in Layfayette Park across from the White House with ace United Press reporter
Joe Leib and showed him a message stating that Pearl Harbor would be attacked on December 7. This could well
have been the Nov. 26 message from Churchill. The New York Times in its 12/8/41 PH report on page 13 under
the headline "Attack Was Expected" stated the US had known that Pearl Harbor was going to be attacked the
week before. Perhaps Leib wasn't the only reporter Hull told.
- 29 Nov. - The FBI embassy tap made an intercept of an uncoded plain-text Japanese telephone
conversation in which an Embassy functionary (Kurusu) asked 'Tell me, what zero hour is. Otherwise, I won't
be able to carry on diplomacy.' The voice from Tokyo (K. Yamamoto) said softly, 'Well then, I will tell you.
Zero hour is December 8 (Tokyo time, ie, December 7 US time) at Pearl Harbor.' (US Navy translation 29 Nov)
- 30 Nov. US Time (or 1 Dec. Tokyo time) - The Japanese fleet was radioed this Imperial Naval Order
(JN-25): "JAPAN, UNDER THE NECESSITY OF HER SELF-PRESERVATION AND SELF-DEFENSE, HAS REACHED A POSITION TO
DECLARE WAR ON THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA." (Congress Appendix D, p 415). US
ally China also recovered it in plain text from a shot-down Japanese Army plane near Canton that evening.
This caused an emergency Imperial Conference because they knew the Chinese would give the information to GB
and US. In a related J-19 message the next day, the US translated elaborate instructions from Japan dealing
in precise detail with the method of internment of American and British nationals in Asia "on the outbreak of
war with England and the United States"
- 1 Dec. - Office of Naval Intelligence, ONI, Twelfth Naval District in San Francisco found the
missing Japanese fleet by correlating reports from the four wireless news services and several shipping
companies that they were getting strange signals west of Hawaii. The Soviet Union also knew the exact
location of the Japanese fleet because they asked the Japanese in advance to let one of their ships pass
(Layton p 261). This info was most likely given to them by US because Sorge's spy ring was rolled up November
14. All long-range PBY patrols from the Aleutians were ordered stopped on Dec 6 to prevent contact.
- 1 Dec. - Foreign Minister Togo cabled Washington Ambassador Nomura to continue negotiations "to
prevent the U.S. from becoming unduly suspicious."
- 1 Dec. - The tanker Shiriya, which had been added to the Striking Force in an order
intercepted Nov 14, radioed "proceeding to a position 30.00 N, 154.20 E. Expect to arrive at that point on 3
December." (near HI) The fact that this message is in the National Archives destroys the myth that the attack
fleet maintained radio silence. They were not ordered to (Order 820). Serial numbers prove that the Striking
Force sent over 663 radio messages between Nov 16 and Dec 7 or about 1 per hour. The NSA has not released any
raw intercepts because the headers would prove that the Striking Force did not maintain radio silence. On Nov
29 the Hiyei sent one message to the Commander of the 3rd fleet; on Nov 30 the Akagi sent several messages to
its tankers - see page 474 of the
Stinnett in DAY OF DECEIT (p 209) found over 100 messages from the Striking Force in the National Archives.
All Direction Finding reports from HI have been crudely cut out. Reports from Dec 5 show messages sent from
the Striking Force picked up by Station Cast, P.I.
- From traffic analysis, HI reported that the carrier force was at sea and in the
North. THE MOST AMAZING FACT is that in reply to that report, MacArthur's command sent a series of three
messages, Nov 26, 29, Dec 2, to HI lying about the location of the carrier fleet - saying it was in the South
China Sea. This false information, which the NSA calls inexplicable, was the true reason that HI was caught
unawares. Duane Whitlock, who sadly passed away in 2005, sent those messages.
- There were a large number of other messages that gave the location of the Striking Force by alluding to
the Aleutians, the North Pacific and various weather systems near HI.
- 1 Dec. - FDR cut short his scheduled ten day vacation after 1 day to meet with Hull and Stark. The
result of this meeting was reported on 2 Dec. by the Washington Post: "President Roosevelt yesterday assumed
direct command of diplomatic and military moves relating to Japan." This politically damaging move was
necessary to prevent the mutiny of conspirators.
- 1 Dec. 3:30 P.M. FDR read Foreign Minister Togo's message to his ambassador to Germany: "Say very
secretly to them that there is extreme danger between Japan & Anglo-Saxon nations through some clash of arms,
add that the time of this war may come quicker than anyone dreams." This was in response to extreme German
pressure on November 29 for Japan to strike the US and promises to join with Japan in war against the US. The
second of its three parts has never been released. The message says it contains the plan of campaign. This is
1 of only 3 known DIPLOMATIC intercepts that specified PH as target. It was so interesting, FDR kept a copy.
- 2 Dec. 2200 Tokyo time- Here is a typical JN-25 ships-in-harbor report sent to attack fleet, words
in parenthesis were in the original: "Striking Force telegram No. 994. Two battleships (Oklahoma, Nevada), 1
aircraft carrier (Enterprise) 2 heavy cruisers, 12 destroyers sailed. The force that sailed on 22 November
returned to port. Ships at anchor Pearl Harbor p.m. 28 November were 6 battleships (2 Maryland class, 2
California class, 2 Pennsylvania class), 1 aircraft carrier (Lexington), 9 heavy cruisers (5 San Francisco
class, 3 Chicago class, 1 Salt Lake class), 5 light cruisers (4 Honolulu class, 1 Omaha class)"
- 2 Dec. - Commander of the Combined Imperial Fleet Yamamoto radioed the attack fleet in plain
(uncoded) Japanese Climb Niitakayama 1208 (Dec 8 Japanese time, Dec 7 our time).
Thus the US knew EXACTLY when the war would start. Mount Niitaka was the highest mountain in the Japanese
Empire - 13,113 feet.
- 2 Dec. - General Hein Ter Poorten, the commander of the Netherlands East Indies Army gave the
Winds setup message to the US War Department. The Australians had a center in Melbourne and the Chinese also
broke JN-25. A Dutch sub had visually tracked the attack fleet to the Kurile Islands in early November and
this info was passed to DC, but DC did not give it to HI. The intercepts the Dutch gave the US are still
classified in RG 38, Box 792.
- 2 Dec - Japanese order No. 902 specified that old JN-25 additive tables version 7 would continue
to be used alongside version 8 when the latter was introduced on December 4. This means the US read all
messages to the Striking Force through the attack.
- 4 Dec. - In the early hours, Ralph Briggs at the Navy's East Coast Intercept station, received the
"East Winds, Rain" message, the Winds Execute, which meant war. He put it on the TWX circuit immediately and
called his commander. This message was deleted from the files. One of the main coverups of Pearl Harbor was
to make this message disappear. Japanese Dispatch # 7001. In response to the Winds Execute, the Office of US
Naval IQ had all Far Eastern stations (Hawaii not informed) destroy their codes and classified documents
including the Tokyo Embassy.
- 4 Dec. - The Dutch invoked the ADB joint defense agreement when the Japanese crossed the magic
line of 100 East and 10 North. The U.S. was at war with Japan 3 days before they were at war with us.
- 4 Dec. - General Ter Poorten sent all the details of the Winds Execute command to Colonel
Weijerman, the Dutch military attache' in Washington to pass on to the highest military circles. Weijerman
personally gave it to Marshall, Chief of Staff of the War Department.
- 4 Dec - US General Thorpe at Java sent four messages warning of the PH attack. DC ordered him to
stop sending warnings.
- 5 Dec. - All Japanese international shipping had returned to home port.
- 5 December - In the morning FDR dictated a letter to Wendell Wilkie for the Australian Prime Minister,
"There is always the Japanese to consider. The situation is definitely serious and there might be an armed
clash at any moment...Perhaps the next four or five days will decide the matters."
- 5 Dec. - At a Cabinet meeting, Secretary of the Navy Knox said, "Well, you know Mr. President, we
know where the Japanese fleet is?" "Yes, I know" said FDR. " I think we ought to tell everybody just how
ticklish the situation is. We have information as Knox just mentioned...Well, you tell them what it is,
Frank." Knox became very excited and said, "Well, we have very secret information that the Japanese fleet is
out at sea. Our information is..." and then a scowling FDR cut him off. (Infamy, Toland, 1982, ch 14
- 5 Dec. - Washington Star reporter Constantine Brown quotes a friend in his book The Coming of
the Whirlwind p 291, "This is it! The Japs are ready to attack. We've broken their code, and we've read
- 5 Dec. - Lt. Howard Brown of Station Cast in the Philippines received urgent request from
Washington to listen for a short message from Tokyo which ended with the English word "stop". He heard the
message at 11:30 PM Hawaiian time Dec 6. This is the Hidden Word Code set up in a message of November 27
(e.g. in code, Roosevelt=Miss Kimiko). The message was: "Relations between Japan and the following countries
are on the brink of catastrophe: Britain and the United States."
- 6 December - This 18 November J19 message was translated by the Army:
"1. The warships at
anchor in the Harbor on the 15th were as I told you in my No.219 on that day. Area A -- A battleship of the
Oklahoma class entered and one tanker left port. Area C -- 3 warships of the heavy cruiser class were at
2. On the 17th the Saratoga was not in harbor. The carrier Enterprise, or some other vessel was in
Area C. Two heavy cruisers of the Chicago class, one of the Pensacola class were tied up at docks 'KS'. 4
merchant vessels were at anchor in area D.
3. At 10:00 A.M. on the morning of the 17th, 8 destroyers were
observed entering the Harbor..." Of course this information was not passed to HI.
- 6 Dec. - A Dec 2 request from Tokyo to HI for information about the absence of barrage balloons,
anti-torpedo nets and air recon was translated by the Army.
- 6 Dec. - at 9:30 P.M FDR read the first 13 parts of the decoded Japanese diplomatic declaration of
war and said "This means war." What kind of President would do nothing? When he returned to his 34 dinner
guests he said, "The war starts tomorrow."
- 6 Dec. - the war cabinet: FDR, top advisor Hopkins, Stimson, Marshall, Secretary of the Navy Knox,
with aides John McCrea and Frank Beatty "deliberately sat through the night of 6 December 1941 waiting for
the Japs to strike." (Infamy ch 16 sec 2)
- 7 December - A message from the Japanese Consul in Budapest to Tokyo:
"On the 6th, the American
Minister presented to the Government of this country a British Government communique to the effect that a
state of war would break out on the 7th." The communique was the Dec 5th War Alert from the British
Admiralty. It has disappeared. This triple priority alert was delivered to FDR personally. The Mid-East
British Air Marshall told Col. Bonner Fellers on Saturday that he had received a secret signal that America
was coming into the war in 24 hours. Churchill summarized the message in GRAND ALLIANCE page 601 as listing
the two fleets attacking British targets and "Other Japanese fleets...also at sea on other tasks." There only
were three other fleets- for Guam, the Philippines and HI. 2 paragraphs of the alert, British targets only,
are printed in AT DAWN WE SLEPT, Prange, p 464. There is no innocent purpose for our government to hide this
- 7 December 1941 very early Washington time, there were two Marines, an emergency special detail,
stationed outside the Japanese Naval Attache's door. 9:30 AM Aides begged Stark to send a warning to Hawaii.
He did not. 10 AM FDR read the 14th part, 11 A.M. FDR read the 15th part setting the time for the declaration
of war to be delivered to the State Department at 1 PM, about dawn Pearl Harbor time, and did nothing. Navy
Secretary Knox was given the 15th part at 11:15 A.M. with this note from the Office of Naval IQ: "This means
a sunrise attack on Pearl Harbor today." Naval IQ also transmitted this prediction to Hull and about 8
others, including the White House (PHH 36:532). At 10:30 AM Bratton informed Marshall that he had a most
important message (the 15th part) and would bring it to Marshall's quarters but Marshall said he would take
it at his office. At 11:25 Marshall reached his office according to Bratton. Marshall testified that he had
been riding horses that morning but he was contradicted by Harrison, McCollum, and Deane. Marshall who had
read the first 13 parts by 10 PM the prior night, perjured himself by denying that he had even received them.
Marshall, in the face of his aides' urgent supplications that he warn Hawaii, made strange delays including
reading and re-reading all of the 10 minute long
Message (and some parts several times) which took an hour and refused to use the scrambler phone on his
desk, refused to send a warning by the fast, more secure Navy system but sent Bratton three times to inquire
how long it would take to send his watered down warning - when informed it would take 30 or 40 minutes by
Army radio, he was satisfied (that meant he had delayed enough so the warning wouldn't reach Pearl Harbor
until after the 1 PM Washington time deadline). The warning was in fact sent commercial without priority
identification and arrived 6 hours late. This message reached all other addressees, like the Philippines and
Canal Zone, in a timely manner.
- 7 December - 7:55 A.M. Hawaii time AIR RAID PEARL HARBOR. THIS IS NOT DRILL.
- 7 December - 1:50 P.M. Washington time. Harry Hopkins, who was the only person with FDR when he
received the news of the attack by telephone from Knox, wrote that FDR was unsurprised and expressed "great
relief." Eleanor Roosevelt wrote about December 7th in This I Remember p 233, that FDR became "in a
way more serene." In the NY Times Magazine of October 8, 1944 she wrote: "December 7 was...far from the shock
it proved to the country in general. We had expected something of the sort for a long time."
- 7 December - 3:00 PM "The (war cabinet) conference met in not too tense an atmosphere because I
think that all of us believed that in the last analysis the enemy was Hitler...and that Japan had given us an
opportunity." Harry Hopkins (top KGB agent and FDR's alter ego), Dec. 7 Memo (Roosevelt and Hopkins R
Sherwood, p. 431)
- 7 December - 9 hours later, MacArthur's entire air force was caught by surprise and wiped out in
the Philippines. His reaction to the news of Pearl Harbor was quite unusual - he locked himself in his room
all morning and refused to meet with his air commander General Brereton, and refused to attack Japanese
forces on Formosa even under orders from the War Department. MacArthur gave three conflicting orders that
ensured the planes were on the ground most of the morning. MacArthur used radar tracking of the Japanese
planes at 140, 100, 80, 60, down to 20 miles to time his final order and ensure his planes were on the
ground. Strategically, the destruction of half of all US heavy bombers in the world was more important than
naval damage in Pearl Harbor. Either MacArthur had committed the greatest blunder in military history or he
was under orders to allow his forces to be destroyed. If it were the greatest blunder in history, it is
remarkable how he escaped any reprimand, kept his command and got his fourth star and Congressional Medal of
Honor shortly later. Prange argued, "How could the President ensure a successful Japanese attack unless he
confided in the commanders and persuaded them to allow the enemy to proceed unhindered?"
- 7 December - 8:30 PM, FDR said to his cabinet, "We have reason to believe that the Germans have
told the Japanese that if Japan declares war, they will too. In other words, a declaration of war by Japan
automatically brings..." at which point he was interrupted, but his expectation and focus is clear. Mrs.
Frances Perkins, Secretary of Labor, observed later about FDR: "I had a deep emotional feeling that something
was wrong, that this situation was not all it appeared to be." Mrs. Perkins was obsessed by Roosevelt's
strange reactions that night and remarked particularly on the expression he had:" In other words, there have
been times when I associated that expression with a kind of evasiveness."
- FDR met with CBS newsman Edward R. Murrow at midnight. Murrow, who had seen many statesmen in crises, was
surprised at FDR's calm reaction. After chatting about London, they reviewed the latest news from PH and then
FDR tested Murrow's news instincts with these 2 bizarre giveaway questions: "Did this surprise you?" Murrow
said yes. FDR: "Maybe you think it didn't surprise us?" FDR gave the impression that the attack itself was
not unwelcome. This is the same high-strung FDR that got polio when convicted of perjury; the same FDR that
was bedridden for a month when he learned Russia was to be attacked; the same FDR who couldn't eat or drink
when he got the Japanese order to sail.
- 8 December - In a conversation with his speech writer Rosenman, FDR "emphasized that Hitler was
still the first target, but he feared that a great many Americans would insist that we make the war in the
Pacific at least equally important with the war against Hitler."
- Later, Jonathan Daniels, administrative assistant and press secretary to FDR said, "The blow was heavier
than he had hoped it would necessarily be...But the risks paid off; even the loss was worth the price..."
- FDR reminisced with Stalin at Tehran on November 30, 1943, saying "if the Japanese had not attacked the
US he doubted very much if it would have been possible to send any American forces to Europe." Compare this
statement with what FDR said at the Atlantic Conference 4 months before Pearl: "Everything was to be done to
force an 'incident' to justify hostilities." Given that a Japanese attack was the only possible incident,
then FDR had said he would do it.