Fort Polk Guardian 12-07-2018

Viewpoint 2/ The Guardian , a civilian enter- prise newspaper, is an authorized publication for members of the U.S. Army. Contents of the Guardian are not necessarily official views of, or en- dorsed by, the U.S. Government, De- partment of Defense, Department of the Army or Fort Polk. The Guardian is published weekly by the Public Affairs Office, Joint Readiness Training Center and Fort Polk. Printed circulation is 13,000. Everything advertised in this publication shall be made available for purchase, use or patronage with- out regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, marital status, physical handicap, political affiliation or any other nonmerit factor of the purchaser, user or patron. A confirmed violation of this policy of equal opportunity by an ad- vertiser will result in the refusal to print advertising from that source. All editorial content of the Guardian is prepared, edited, pro- vided and approved by the Public Af- fairs Office, Joint Readiness Training Center and Fort Polk. The Guardian is printed by the Natchitoches Times , a private firm in no way connected with the Depart- ment of the Army, under exclusive written contract with Fort Polk. The civilian printer is responsible for com- mercial advertising. The appearance of advertising in this publication, including inserts and supplements, does not constitute en- dorsement by the Department of the Army or the Natchitoches Times of the products or services advertised. Guardian Editorial Staff Brig. Gen. Patrick D. Frank Joint Readiness Training Center and Fort Polk commanding general Col. Jarrett Thomas II Garrison commander Kim Reischling Information strategies officer Chuck Cannon Editor Jean Dubiel Angie Thorne Staff writers Editorial Offices Building 4919, Magnolia Street Fort Polk, LA 71459-5060 Voice (337) 531-4033 Fax (337) 531-1401 Email: Trading post ads: Fort Polk Homepage Advertising For advertising contact (337) 404-7242 Email: sales@ In our view Guardian staff asked Fort Polk residents, "What do you want for Christmas?" Here are their responses: Kathy Ports: "To enjoy time with my Family and take a vacation." Guardian Dec. 7, 2018 Gerard Abair: "I wouldn't mind a new laptop." FORT POLK, La. — “Yesterday, De- cember 7, 1941 — a date which will live in infamy — the United States of Amer- ica was suddenly and deliberately at- tacked by naval and air forces of the Em- pire of Japan.” Seventy-seven years ago today, President Franklin D. Roosevelt spoke those words in a radio address to the nation after the attack on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. For many, the attack was a complete surprise and to this day, there are those who wonder what Japan hoped to ac- complish by at- tacking the United States. As we look back at that “day in in- famy” History Extra (www.histo- ) of- fers 11 lesser known facts about Pearl Harbor. • Pearl Harbor was not the begin- ning of the Pacific War. Japanese forces landed in northern Malaya a couple of hours before the Pearl Har- bor attack. • The Pearl Harbor operation was extremely difficult and risky. There were strong reasons why American military leaders thought an attack on Hawaii was impractical. • Senior officers in the Japanese Navy opposed a full-scale Pearl Har- bor attack. Admiral Yamamoto, com- mander-in-chief of the Combined Fleet, suggested the operation. The most important critic was an officer senior to Yamamoto; this was Admi- ral Nagano, the chief of the Naval General Staff. • Japanese submarines were sup- posed to play a major role in the Pearl Harbor attack. Some 26 Japan- ese “cruiser” submarines were con- centrated around the Hawaiian Is- lands, their mission to pick off any American ships that survived the main air attack. • Washington and London politi- cal and military leaders were not surprised by the out- break of war with Japan. Information was gained from “in- tercepts” of diplomat- ic correspondence about Japanese preparations. • The failure to patrol the ap- proaches to Pearl Harbor was partly the result of American offensive war plans. There were a large number of U.S. long-range aircraft in the Pacif- ic, but they were not used to safe- guard Hawaii. • The Pearl Harbor attack did not destroy the American Fleet. In the at- tack on “Battleship Row” on Dec. 7, only two elderly battleships, the Ari- zona and Oklahoma, were damaged beyond repair. The Pacific Fleet’s three aircraft carriers were away at sea on Dec. 7. • Admiral Nagumo made the cor- rect decision when he did not mount a third attack on Pearl Harbor. Nagumo was obeying his instruc- tions to make a swift getaway. • The American commanders at Pearl Harbor were not scapegoats. Adm. Husband E. Kimmel, com- mander in chief of the Pacific Fleet, and Gen. Walter Short, CINC of U.S. Army forces on Hawaii (including air defense forces) were dismissed a few days after the attack. Some months later, the first U.S. govern- ment enquiry found there had been dereliction of duty on the part of these two officers. • Hitler’s declaration of war on the U.S. on Dec. 11 was not a result of Pearl Harbor. Hitler and the Ger- man military did not know about the proposed Pearl Harbor strike. Under the Tripartite Pact, signed with Japan and Italy in September 1940, Ger- many was obliged to go to war only if the U.S. attacked Japan, not if Japan attacked the USA. • For Japan, Pearl Harbor was both a success and a failure. The at- tack did change the strategic situa- tion. The pre-war military strategy of Britain and the U.S. was to assemble strong forces in the west (at Singa- pore) and the east (at Hawaii), to de- ter Japan by threatening a two-front war. Pearl Harbor removed the American part of the deterrent. It made possible the rapid conquest of Malaya, the Philippines and the Dutch East Indies. On the other hand, Admiral Ya- mamoto had hoped to destroy the American carrier force, and this did not happen. And by mounting a sur- prise attack without a declaration of war on a Sunday morning and killing several thousand Americans, the Japanese put American public opinion totally behind the war effort. To read more about the effects of the Dec. 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Har- bor and National Pear Harbor Re- membrance Day visit and click on “National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day.” Facts you might not have known about ‘day in infamy’ Commentary Cannon Darrius White: "I’d like a painting, maybe with Soldiers or bas- ketball players." Kamrin Coffee: "Some new Jordans." By CHUCK CANNON Guardian editor For advertising contact Theresa Larue ( ) - Email: sales