Myths & Lies
Did Roosevelt know the Japanese were coming?

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NOTE: Roger Mansell posted the below based on information he had at the time (2002). For those interested in following this controversial topic further, see this article by John Lukacs entitled, The Churchill-Roosevelt Forgeries.

The following research was sent by Professor Anthony D'Amato to Mr. Gil Hair, President of the Committee for Internee Rights, CFIR.
[Professor D'Amato is Chief council in the major lawsuits seeking reparations for the enslavement of American Prisoners of War and Civilian Internees.]

"In the course of my research I had seen some vague mentions of Nazi intercepts of US-UK transatlantic broadcasts. Then I found the following book, too late for our Complaint but it may be helpful later on. It's called GESTAPO CHIEF: THE 1948 INTERROGATION OF HEINRICH MULLER, by Gregory Douglas, published in 1995. The Nazis only succeeded in breaking the transatlantic code in September 1941, and thus missed the summer period which we argued, in our Complaint in the Achenbach case, was critical. Nevertheless, there is a very important transcript of the Roosevelt-Churchill [FDR-WC] phone conversation of November 26, 1941. Here are some excerpts:"

(1) In discussing Japanese naval movements from Hittukapp Bay in the Kuriles, both FDR and WC were aware of them, but FDR said they were moving south. No, said WC:

WC: Franklin, it is headed East.

FDR: Surely you must be ... will you repeat that please?

WC: I said to the East. This force is sailing to the East...towards you.

FDR: Perhaps they set an easterly course to fool any observers and then plan to swing South to support the landings in the southern area. I have ...

WC: No, at this moment, their forces are moving across the northern Pacific and I can assure you that their goal is in the (conversation broken) fleet in Hawaii. At Pearl Harbor.

FDR: This is monstrous. Can you tell me ... indicate ... the nature of your intelligence? Without compromising your sources...

WC: Yes, I will have to be careful. Our agents in Japan have been reporting on the gradual (conversation broken) units. And these have disappeared from Japanese home waters. We also have highly reliable sources in the Japanese foreign service and even in the military.

FDR: The obvious implication is that the Japs are going to do a Port Arthur on us at Pearl Harbor. Do you concur? [Editor's Note: Japan attacked Port Arthur, destroying the Russian fleet in a "sneak attack."]

WC: I do indeed. Unless they add an attack on the Panama Canal to this vile business. I can hardly envision the canal as a primary goal, especially with your fleet lying athwart their lines of communication with Japan. No, if they do strike the canal, they will have to first neutralize your fleet.

FDR: The worst form of treachery. We can prepare our defenses on the islands and give them a warm welcome when they come. It certainly would put some iron up Congress's ass.

FDR: I think torpedoes would be ruled out at the outset. Pearl is far too shallow to permit a successful torpedo attack. .. What do your people give you as the actual date of the attack?

WC: The actual date given is the eighth of December. That's a Monday. [Editor's note: Churchill and the British got this wrong; they didn't realize that on the 8th in Japan, it was the 7th in Hawaii.]

FDR: But Monday seems odd. Are you certain?

WC: It is in the calendar. Monday is the eighth.

FDR ... then I will have to consider the entire problem. A Japanese attack on us, which would result in war between us ... and certainly you as well ... would certainly fulfill two of the most important requirements of our policy. Harry [Hopkins] has told me repeatedly ... that Stalin is desperate at this point. The Nazis are at the gates of Moscow, his armies are melting away.... there's no saying what could transpire if the Japs suddenly fell on Stalin's rear. In spite of all the agreements between them and the Japs dropping Matsuoka, there is still strong anti-Russian sentiment in high Japanese military circles.
FDR: ... not as capable as you are at translating their messages and the army and navy are very jealous of each other. There is so much coming in that everyone is confused. We have no agents in place in Japan [a lie- the USA had OSS operatives in place] and every day dozens of messages are (conversation broken) that contradict each other or are not well translated. I have seen three translations of the same message with three entirely different meanings. (conversation broken) address your concern about British holdings in the Pacific.... if the Japanese do attack both of us, eventually we will be able to crush them and regain all of the lost territories. As for myself, I will be damned glad to be rid of the Philippines.