Why The Neutralist? The term Isolationist implies a narrow Fortress America outlook and is used as an epithet. The term Neutralist does not indicate someone hiding out from the world. No one calls the Swiss isolationists. The Wilsonian world view is old, tired and wrong. Our interventions have been less and less successful and now the failure can no longer be covered up.
Friday, December 09, 2011
Pearl Harbor - Isn't that an elephant here in the room with us-Nah!
No matter, the great epic is still with us. A film or documentary can be counted on every so often. The main thing for the great and good is to keep up the front that this was a holy war led by holy men. With great effort this can be done with Churchill and Roosevelt. Stalin is a problem. You might find a few of his defenders on the north bank of the Charles River, but even there, they are sparse.
The Diane Rehm show commemorated the day with guest host Tom Gjelton and two authors.; Ian Toll and Steven Gillon. According to the bio notes, Mr. Stoll is a former Wall Street analyst, Federal Reserve financial analyst, political aide and speechwriter; he the author of a previous book on naval history, "Six Frigates." Steven Gillon is a history professor and author of numerous books, including "The Kennedy Assassination - 24 Hours"; resident historian for The History Channel. The two men discussed the events leading up to the attack. It was informative, but what it does not address in detail is Herbert Hoover’s book, Freedom Betrayed. Talk about large elephants in the room and everyone pretending to “normalcy.” Whatever one might think about Herb and the Depression, is there anyone who thinks he was a nut or a liar? To not mention the book or address Hoover's points about an FDR campaign to inveigle the Japanese into war when such a book has been out since November 7 is cute or maybe the lads didn't know about the tome?
Pat Buchannan, as expected, has been all over it. With a review of the Hoover book, he details the efforts of the Roosevelt administration to get a war against the wishes of much of the nation. He details Hoover's account of Japan's efforts to avoid war and Team Roosevelt's work to avoid avoiding war. His piece is all over the web including TownHall which all too often appears to be Neocon heaven.
It has been the practice in this country mainly to ignore challenges to the orthodox doctrine. On occasion, the challenge is taken up to dismiss efforts.
So how does the Neutralist see this. In 1954, the great military historian and theoretician, Basil Liddell Hart wrote:
In reply President Roosevelt demanded , on the 24th July 1941, the withdrawal of Japanese troops from Indo-China ----and to enforce his demands he issued orders on the 26th for freezing all Japanese assets in the U.S.A. and placing an embargo on oil supply. Mr. Churchill took simultaneous action and two days later the refugee Dutch Government in London was induced to follow suit----which meant, as Mr. Churchill has remarked, that ‘Japan was deprived at a stroke of her vital oil supplies.’
In early discussions it had always been recognized that such a paralyzing stroke would force Japan to fight, as the only alternative to collapse or the abandonment of her policy. It is remarkable that she deferred striking for more than four months, while trying to negotiate a lifting of the oil embargo. The United States Government refused to lift it, unless Japan withdrew not only from Indo-China but also from China. No government, least of all the Japanese could be expected to swallow such humiliating conditions.*
There is much controversy in the life of Liddell Hart. Suffice it to say, he had no political ax to grind, and it was no way controversial to say Roosevelt wanted to get into World War II at the time LH wrote. Point to Hoover.
The Neutralist position is that war cannot always be avoided, and the Neutralist never wants to see us ever lose, but greatness exists in avoiding committing your countrymen to death and destruction, while insuring that the interests of the nation are accomplished.
All else, even with victory, is failure.
Strategy,by B.H. Liddill Hart, 1954, 1967 by Faber & Faber Ltd., London, England, Page 254.