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Hawaii remembrance draws handful of Pearl Harbor survivors

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By AUDREY McAVOY

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The same as the bombings of Hiroshima & Nagasaki, the Pearl Harbor attack was tragic and unnecessary.

-4 ( +17 / -21 )

Don't forget. Never let it happen again. Warfare is a political failure, but once it is started, it needs to be finished.

22 ( +22 / -0 )

The same as the bombings of Hiroshima & Nagasaki, the Pearl Harbor attack was tragic and unnecessary.

Hindsight is 20/20

5 ( +11 / -6 )

These "memorial ceremonies" will in time, pass away as well, and become a part of history that should never be forgotten.

15 ( +18 / -3 )

Japan betrayed Japan by the attack on Pearl Harbour 81 years ago leading the U.S.A. to declare war on Japan. And Japan was defeated after the atom

bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945.

5 ( +18 / -13 )

The same as the bombings of Hiroshima & Nagasaki, the Pearl Harbor attack was tragic and unnecessary.

Bad, but you’re conflating and equating the three, very different.

9 ( +19 / -10 )

Bad, but you’re conflating and equating the three, very different.

I agree, without the first, the second and third may never have occurred, pure speculation on my part, 20/20 hindsight.

-8 ( +13 / -21 )

Talked about Pearl Harbor once with a Japanese coworker. He was adamant that the UK tricked Japan into the raid. His attitude was very much one of "poor ol' Japan being tricked by the nasty Americans".

Unbelievable, but a very pervasive view here in Japan.

-10 ( +21 / -31 )

It's a shame that Pearl Harbor was attacked by Japan. They caused the deaths of so many back in their home country. Sad...

-6 ( +16 / -22 )

Japan's leaders on that time did some monumentally bad strategic moves, fuelled by stupidity, ultra-nationalism, stupidity, arrogance, stupidity and lack of education (did I mention stupidity?!). Attacking Hawaii but not occupying it, going headfirst into the walls at Midway and not knowing when to quit (requiring two atomic bombs to convince them to). That's what you get when you allow such people in power. There were those generals actually educated in the USA that tried to warn their Japanese peers about the danger of attaking like this. They were silenced...

-1 ( +11 / -12 )

There were members of the Japanese cabinet who opposed the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor but were out shouted, by the powerful and fanatic Navy and Army factions and the Emperor went with them over the objections of his mother, the Empress Dowager. What appeared as victory was the beginning of the worst disaster in Japan's history. The Emperor should have listened to his mother.

0 ( +13 / -13 )

bass4funkToday  08:19 am JST

The same as the bombings of Hiroshima & Nagasaki, the Pearl Harbor attack was tragic and unnecessary.

Bad, but you’re conflating and equating the three, very different.You're right.

True. One was an attack on enemy military assets. The other two were an attack on civilians of an enemy already effectively destroyed, just to send a message to our new enemy.

8 ( +20 / -12 )

“I fear all we have done is to have awoken a sleeping giant and filled him with terrible resolve.”

Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto

11 ( +17 / -6 )

Lets also not forget the innocent civilians that perished because of the despicable sneak attack bombings of pearl harbor.

And thankyou for your service.

1 ( +13 / -12 )

True. One was an attack on enemy military assets. The other two were an attack on civilians of an enemy already effectively destroyed, just to send a message to our new enemy.

Ossan i see you have changed your tune because earlier this summer you said how the atomic bombings were justifiable and necessary.

-7 ( +8 / -15 )

I am glad that these men got a chance to become old men. So many of their generation did not. I hope that their service and sacrifice for Democracy will not be forgotten when the last of them has passed.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

“I fear all we have done is to have awoken a sleeping giant and filled him with terrible resolve.”

Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto

Good one. Another one from the japn admiral:

I am looking forward to dictating peace to the United States in the White House at Washington.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

“Remember what they’re here for. Remember and honor those that are left."

These people died or risked their lives because they were defending their country (my country too) from fascism. To defend freedoms. If that sounds funny, 1941 USA was way more free than 1941 Japan.

Would the best way to honour them be to fight fascism ourselves? To actively defend freedoms?

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Read "At Dawn We Slept". It makes no judgements but it presents the evidence that, perhaps, the attack wasn't such a "surprise" as is so widely advertised. The attack began circa 0745. Previously, at 0530, the USS WARD patrolling outside of Pearl Harbor identified a Japanese miniature submarine (Max range 200 miles), fired upon it, and sank it and thereby accomplished two things, technically, starting the Taiheiyô sensô, and, somehow completely failing to alert the sleeping base. The sub was found a few years ago. And as one looks deeper into it, it just gets better that Roosevelt finessed both the Japanese (forced in many ways) and an American People HIGHLY reluctant to entering another European war after the debacle of the last one despite the political pressure MONEY was putting on Roosevelt to enter the war. Germany refused to co-operate. 'Treacherous' Japan was the push. For example, when the Japanese Ambassador arrived at the White House carrying a declaration of war well before the attack at PH, he was kept waiting for many hours until after the attack. Those 2400 souls were not 'casualties', they were just political expenditures.

-8 ( +3 / -11 )

“I fear all we have done is to have awoken a sleeping giant and filled him with terrible resolve.”

Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto

Good one. Another one from the japn admiral:

I am looking forward to dictating peace to the United States in the White House at Washington.

(In my imagination) As he spiralled to his death over the jungles of Bougainville in a flaming airplane, his last words were "This may not have been the best idea I ever had...."

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Hawaii remembrance draws handful of Pearl Harbor survivors:

One's due respect goes to the several centenarian survivors of Pearl Harbor attack commemorating those perished 81 years ago.

How many Americans would bother to remember the tragedy?

Japan is their closest ally now..

3 ( +5 / -2 )

@Ossan

One was an attack on enemy military assets. The other two were an attack on civilians of an enemy already effectively destroyed

One was launched with the aim of launching the most destructive war in history. The other two were launched to put a quick end to the most destructive war in history. Both were successful in their aims.

"an enemy already effectively destroyed."

But not willing to surrender. The Potsdam Ultimatum a couple of weeks earlier opened that door for them. They willfully chose to keep it shut -- until the emperor's unilateral decision after hearing the news of Nagasaki.

0 ( +10 / -10 )

@Kenshin

The same as the bombings of Hiroshima & Nagasaki, the Pearl Harbor attack was tragic and unnecessary.

Pearl Harbor was unnecessary, but Hiroshima/Nagasaki was ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY, otherwise Japanese Imperial Army was prepared to commit Kyokusei, or the Kamikaze attack by the entire population.

It was the nuclear bombs that persuaded Hirohito that any further resistance was futile and ordered the unconditional surrender against the objection of Tojo Hideki and Imperial Army hardliner.

So the nuclear bombs saved the lives of tens of millions of Japanese civilians and prevented the division of Japan as the Soviet Army was preparing to invade mainland Japan from the North as well.

-12 ( +7 / -19 )

@venze

How many Americans would bother to remember the tragedy?

Americans still vividly remember the Pearl Harbor.

2001 : https://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/1108389-pearl_harbor

2019 : https://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/midway_2019

5 ( +10 / -5 )

The next US super carrier will be named after an African American cook who shot down Japanese fighters at the Pearl Harbor.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Doris_Miller

USS Doris Miller (CVN-81) is a future Gerald R. Ford-class aircraft carrier of the United States Navy.[6][7] Doris Miller is scheduled to be laid down January 2026, launched October 2029 and commissioned in 2032.

The ship, named for Messman Second Class Doris Miller, is the first aircraft carrier named for both an enlisted sailor and an African-American person.[8] The ship will be the second to honor Miller, who received the Navy Cross for his actions during the attack on Pearl Harbor, the first ship was USS Miller (FF-1091).[9]

-5 ( +7 / -12 )

Indeed "first strike". And now Japan wants "first strike capability"? History repeats itself. But next time, it could be Tokyo that is targeted by a nuclear strike in retaliation...

-12 ( +3 / -15 )

Only the dead have seen the end of war.

Will mankind ever evolve and rid itself of greed, envy, and hate?

Nope.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Japan is their closest ally now..

Sorry but not true !

Japan isn't the closest ally of the USA

-7 ( +4 / -11 )

hows and whys of Japan entering WWII

Japan didn't enter WWII because they started ww2

with their expansion agenda and attack of China after the colonization of Manchuria.

A chain of events that led Germany and Poland to really enter

-6 ( +5 / -11 )

Lest we forget?

What has been taught in the classrooms?

What has the global community learnt?

Lest we forget

Kipling's poem

God of our fathers, known of old,

Lord of our far-flung battle-line,

Beneath whose awful Hand we hold

Dominion over palm and pine—

Lord God of Hosts, be with us yet,

Lest we forget—lest we forget!

4 ( +4 / -0 )

The US brought this onto themselves. You cannot realistically place an oil embargo on imperial Japan and expect no consequences. Ask an American what the United States did to provoke the Japanese, and he will probably say that the Americans did nothing: we were just minding our own business when the crazy Japanese, completely without justification, mounted a sneak attack on us, catching us totally by surprise in Hawaii on December 7, 1941 oblivious of U.S. economic warfare. Don't stop here though.

In 1940 Japan invaded French Indochina in an effort to embargo all imports into China, including war supplies purchased from the U.S. This move prompted the United States to embargo all oil exports.

Ultimately Japan reapt what it sowed.

-10 ( +0 / -10 )

The US brought this onto themselves. You cannot realistically place an oil embargo on imperial Japan and expect no consequences. 

Sheer and utter nonsense.

No country has a RIGHT to trade relations. The United States as a soverign nation has the right to say "We don't like what you are doing and we are not going to trade with you or sell you what you want/need. Don't like it? Change your behavior."

To use that as an excuse to launch a war is just laughably wrong and, well, laughable.

"Ultimately Japan reaped what it sowed" is literally the only part of that "collection of words" that is accurate.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

So the nuclear bombs saved the lives of tens of millions of Japanese civilians and prevented the division of Japan

Yes, but the Allies had plans to and were going to carve up Japan:

US would get: Kanto, Kansai

UK: Kyushuu, Chuugoku

Soviets: Hokkaido, Tohoku

China: Shikoku, Osaka

All four: Tokyo like in Berlin

What kept this plan from being carried out is what prevented the division of Japan.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

Pearl Harbor was a legitimate attack in a time of war against the enemies of Japan.... Pearl Harbor was just another battle.

Yasukuni revisionists have taken things to an entirely new level with this ‘history is bunk’ parallel universe reversal of the order of events; where America’s declaration of war AFTER Japan’s infamous sneak attack on Pearl Harbor is an inconvenient truth that can be conjured out of existence.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Awa no GaijinToday  10:27 am JST

True. One was an attack on enemy military assets. The other two were an attack on civilians of an enemy already effectively destroyed, just to send a message to our new enemy.

Ossan i see you have changed your tune because earlier this summer you said how the atomic bombings were justifiable and necessary.

Nope. I still consider them to have been necessary. But not to defeat Japan that was already effectively defeated. Please learn to read.

Awa no GaijinToday  10:21 am JST

Lets also not forget the innocent civilians that perished because of the despicable sneak attack bombings of pearl harbor.

Civilian deaths from Pear Harbor attack................68

Civilian deats from Hiroshima and Nagasaki A-Bombs.....129,000 to 226,000. And many later from the effects of radiation exposure.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

“I fear all we “I fear all we have done is to have awoken a sleeping giant and filled him with terrible resolve.”

Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto

Those who don’t learn history are bound to misquote it (repeatedly!) The quotation is portrayed at the very end of the 1970 film Tora! Tora! Tora! In fact, it was Napoleon, talking about China. "China is a sickly, sleeping giant. But when she awakes the world will tremble.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isoroku_Yamamoto%27s_sleeping_giant_quote

5 ( +5 / -0 )

JeffLeeToday  11:58 am JST

@Ossan

One was an attack on enemy military assets. The other two were an attack on civilians of an enemy already effectively destroyed

One was launched with the aim of launching the most destructive war in history. The other two were launched to put a quick end to the most destructive war in history. Both were successful in their aims.

Nope. Imperial Japan had no idea that WWII would be the most destructive war in history. The Pear Harbor attack was carried out to eliminate US Pacific Naval power. A failure by the way. The IJN's goal was to take the Pacific out to Hawaii and make the US negotiate for peace.

The A-Bombs were dropped not to bring a quick end, but to stop the USSR.

"an enemy already effectively destroyed."

But not willing to surrender. The Potsdam Ultimatum a couple of weeks earlier opened that door for them. They willfully chose to keep it shut -- until the emperor's unilateral decision after hearing the news of Nagasaki.

Again, was not necessary. The Allies rejected Japan's offer to surrender provided they could keep their Emperor. But at the end of the day, the Allies accepted the exact same thing. There is little doubt that Japan could have been made to surrender by blockade, as the country was already in ruins with a shortage of everything. But it was imperative to stop the USSR as quickly as possible,

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

For me it's incredible to think that Japan launched this attack on the US, a very serious mistake.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@Ossan

Harbor attack was carried out to eliminate US Pacific Naval power. A failure by the way. 

The attack was very much a success, total surprise and inflicting huge losses on the enemy while few losses of their own. Many in the Japanese government and army believed it had no chance of success and were amazed and jubilant when they heard the news of the aftermath. The US Pacific fleet was incapacitated while the Japanese were able to invade the PHilippines, Malaya and Hong Kong, which were highly successful indeed.

The A-Bombs were dropped not to bring a quick end, but to stop the USSR.

Gimme a break. There are reams and reams of official documents and memoirs recording White House deliberations and decisions in the spring/summer 1945. They show that the topmost goal - the obsession - of Roosevelt and then Truman and their cabinet was to use the new bomb to effect a quick surrender from Japan. The Soviets were distant secondary consideration. in fact, the US WANTED the Soviets in the Pacific war. At the Yalta conference six months earlier, the US and UK urged Stalin to declare war on Japan and invade its territories.

The Allies rejected Japan's offer to surrender provided they could keep their Emperor

At that point, Japan was in no condition to issue any demands to the US, which as you said had already had already been "effectively destroyed."

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Well put JeffLee.

Japan never ever issued a call for surrender until after the second A-bomb was dropped. The ipso facto surrender came from the Emperor himself. It was recorded on a record plate (I believe) in case there would be a palace revolt, which there was. The recoding of the Emperor's voice was played through a loud speaker. And that ended the war. The fanatics committed suicide.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Again, was not necessary. The Allies rejected Japan's offer to surrender provided they could keep their Emperor.

To effect surrender, someone with legitimate authority had to make the political decision that Japan would capitulate. Second, Japan’s armed forces had to comply with the government’s surrender. Given the incredible history of defiance of government authority by Japan’s armed forces for at least the 15 years prior to 1945, not only American but also Japanese leaders including the emperor, understood that a surrender order by the government, even one from the emperor, might not secure compliance by the armed forces. In fact when Hirohito did announce Japan's surrender he did so from hiding while the IJA searched for him intending to arrest him.

Emperor Hirohito’s path to making that political decision was scarcely straight. Through May 1945, he believed a major Japanese military victory must precede any move toward peace, or Japan’s hopes for something other than unconditional surrender would be vain. He thus urged that Japan should launch a new offensive in China. This was spurned by his military leadership, yet another signal the armed forces recognized no master.

Marquis Kido, Hirohito’s principal adviser, presented to him a memorandum proposing a path to peace in June 1945. Rejecting any direct approach to the United States, Kido urged a negotiated settlement achieved by Soviet mediation. As for settlement terms, Kido’s conjured up a copy of the Treaty of Versailles. Japan might have to give up her overseas conquests and endure a period of disarmament. But there would be no occupation of Japanese soil, thus assuring continuance of the imperial system and Hirohito’s seat on the throne. In view of Germany’s renewed war after the Treaty of Versailles, there is zero chance US leaders would have accepted that framework to end the war.

Prior to the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, Hirohito failed to intervene as the Soviet mediation effort went nowhere. Explanation for his inaction probably reflects three strands. Except for one extraordinary situation in 1936 when he moved forcefully to demand suppression of a military mutiny in Tokyo, Hirohito avoided any attempt to rule Japan directly. A second reason was Ketsu Go: the planned Armageddon battle on Kyushu to turn the military situation to Japan’s favor. Only gradually into July reports reaching the emperor raised his doubts about its likelihood of its success.

A side note is that based on Japan's own nuclear weapons program and the difficulties encountered making fissile for a Japanese atomic bomb, Japan's military leadership refused to believe the US possessed more than one atomic bomb and thus even after the bombing of Hiroshima the IJA and IJN both rejected surrendering. Both the IJA and IJN were dead set on bleeding Allied forces attempting to invade Japan's home islands and inflict such severe casualties that the Aiiles wold accept something less than an unconditional surrender. The Allies, having seen the casualties experienced fighting on Okinawa, the dress rehersal for invading Japan itself, knew this and chose to use atomic weapons.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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