Thursday Theories – Winston Churchill

Earlier this week, I wrote a really wee little bit about the myth of whether or not Winston Churchill actually knew about the Pearl Habor attack, BEFORE, it happened.

One of the enduring myths about Signals Intelligence in the Second World War is that Britain’s Prime Minister Winston Churchill knew from intercepted messages that the Japanese were going to attack Pearl Harbor in December 1941 but kept the fact secret to bring the USA into the war on the Allied side.


In this article, it says that it’s false based on the fact that the simultaneous Japanese attacks on Hong Kong, Malaya, the Dutch East Indies and Pearl Harbor were carried out in radio silence: there were no transmissions for Bletchley Park to intercept. But there would be radio silence, wouldn’t there? If you were trying to get someone to join, especially under War circumstances. Knowing that if that group of people joined, it would help immensely. Isn’t the point to NOT intercept? We’re talking about War here, and the allies were losing. Yes, that’s a terrible thought, that they wouldn’t send help.

It also says in the article that they assumed, because the report was vague. They assumed that the Japanese would invade Thailand…Why would you assume during War times about anything? There was a lot of assumptions being made.

The major reason why a lot of people think that Winston would have told Roosevelt, was because “Well of course he would”. I have theory though based on that Churchill was not a nice guy. Not really. Knowing what I know about the man. If he had warned Roosevelt, then Roosevelt would have been prepared and then the Japanese would have backed off. America more than likely still wouldn’t have joined in. Why would they send off people to War, when they are perfectly well setup and safe.

The problem I’ve been finding that a lot of the sites, especially those dedicated to Churchill, are very, well he couldn’t have done it, because it wouldn’t have been the proper thing to do. Even pages that show there was evidence of a potential attack on Pearl Harbor, but they would have been to busy to read them.

Well, here is the evidence: The 2413 pre-Pearl Harbor intercepts had been decrypted by Navy cryptologists after the war while they were waiting to be mustered out of the service. While Parker makes a strong circumstantial case that the attack would have been discovered had these messages been read, cryptologists at that time would not have been looking just at the 2413 intercepts; they would have been looking at all 26,581. Would they have been able to discern the relevant information from all that noise?

So basically, there was evidence of it, but there were too many other messages.

That’s surely not good enough?


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