Tuesday, December 7, 2010

On This Date...A Day of Remembrance -

The entire world knows, of course, that the forces of the Japanese Empire attacked the American fleet in Pearl Harbor on this date, in 1941.
Over 24oo were killed on that day, and Battleship Row lay in partial ruins.
Some thoughts come to mind about that Day of Infamy:
The lingering Depression, by that time called by the opposition "Roosevelt's Depression," still witnessed many Americans still out of work. In one day, this date in 1941, the Japanese solved this lingering problem by creating a gigantic war industry almost overnight in America, putting countless thousands back to work in a common purpose.
Adolf Hitler was in shock when he heard of the attack, and it required him almost four days before he declared war on America, in accordance with the tenets of the Tripartite Agreement, signed by Hitler, Mussolini and representatives of the Japanese Empire.
Strange; America was the only country in the entire World War that Hitler declared war upon.
Yamamoto, the Commander of the Japanese Combined Fleet, had come to America to study at Harvard years before, and had learned of the American and his ways, through such pursuits as poker, which he loved playing. He once visited Detroit, followed by a trip to the Texas oil fields, and upon returning to Japan, warned the militarists " never to go to war with America."
He also, as a great visionary, some twenty years before Pearl Harbor, stated that the "next naval war will be decided in the air."
How prophetic - when the attack took place at Pearl Harbor, a message was sent to Admiral Yamamoto, informing him that the American aircraft carriers were not present - the Admiral then uttered that prescient statement "what I fear that we have done is to awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve."
I have for years had the gnawing feeling that when Yamamoto uttered those words on Dec. 7, he knew that Japan would lose the war; however, as a "son of the Emperor" he was committed to his nation and culture, and planned the entire Pearl Harbor venture.
Days like this should not be forgotten.
By the way, at this same point in time, the legendary pop musician, Dave Brubek has begun his 91st year - Best Wishes to a true pioneer, one of very few pop artists to study with a great classical composer, Darius Milhaud, one of the eminent Post -Impressionists.

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