PROCEEDINGS OF HEWITT INQUIRY                                                361

 

HEWITT INQUIRY EXHIBIT NO. 2

 

NARRATIVE STATEMENT OF RECORD OF PEARL HARBOR COURT OF INQUIRY

 

With Cross‑References to Admiral Hart's Investigation Together With Addendum Thereto (Admiral Hewitt's Findings and Conclusions)

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

Page

Foreword.................................................................................    383

 

Chapter:

   I.  A. Commander—in—Chief, U. S. Fleet, and Pacific Fleet.............................   385

B. Basing of Fleet at Hawaii .....................................................   385

C. Air Patrol from Hawaii in 1940 ................................................   387

D. The International Situation: Likelihood of Attack and the Status of Defenses

Prior to Admiral Kimmel's Command .............................................   368

E. Joint Estimate of Richardson and Kimmel as to Situation and Defenses ..........   389

F. The Grew Report of Rumored Japanese Attack and ONI Evaluation .................   370

  II.  Assumption of Command by Admiral Kimmel—His Reorganization of the Pacific Fleet and

His Staff:

A. Assumption of Command..........................................................   370

B. Reorganization of the Pacific Fleet............................................   371

C. Admiral Kimmel's Staff ........................................................   371

D. General Orders Nos. 142 and 143 ...............................................   374

 III.  The Chief of Naval Operations—His Staff and Duties:

A. The Chief of Naval Operations..................................................   374

B. Admiral Stark's Staff .........................................................   374

C. The Duties of the Chief of Naval Operations ...................................   377

 

362                        CONGRESSIONAL INVESTIGATION PEARL HARBOR ATTACK

Page

Chapter:

  IV.  The Commanding General Hawaiian Department‑His Major Mission:

A. The Commanding General.........................................................   375

B. General Short's Major Mission .................................................   379

   V.  Relations in General Between Navy and Army Commanders:

A. In Washington .................................................................   379

B. In Hawaii .....................................................................   379

  VI.  The War Plans Relating to Hawaii and the Adequacy of the Pacific Fleet:

A. The Plans for Defense of Hawaii ...............................................   381

B. Testimony Concerning the War Plans in General .................................   395

C. Adequacy of Fleet Generally to Carry Out its Tasks ............................   400

 VII.  The Possibility of Aerial Torpedo Attack at Pearl Harbor:

A. Knowledge and Evaluation of Secretary's Letter ................................   402

B. Correspondence on Anti‑torpedo Baffles in Pearl Harbor ........................    403

VIII. The Situation Prior to the Freezing of Japanese Assets:

A. The Inadequacy of Local Defense Forces and Necessity for Reliance on the Fleet    405

B. Admiral Kimmel's View Concerning the Possibility of a Surprise Attack .........   405

C. Admiral Kimmel's Desire for Information as to Developments ....................   406

D. Information Sent to Admiral Kimmel Concerning the International Situation .....   406

  IX.  Admiral Kimmel's Visit in June and Annual Report:

A. Admiral Kimmel's Visit.........................................................   407

B. Kimmel's Annual Report‑Year Ending June 30, 1941...............................   407

   X.  Reconnaissance Toward Jaluit .....................................................    407

  XI. The Freezing of Japanese Assets—Deterioration of Situation and Fleet Security

Order:

A. The Freezing Order ............................................................    408

B. Further Deterioration of Situation ............................................    409

C. Inadequacy of Equipment and Efforts to Rectify ................................    411

D. Admiral Kimmel's Letter on Security of the Fleet...............................    411

 XII.  Intelligence in Washington—The Interception and Decoding of Secret Japanese

Communications:

A. ONI Distribution and Acquisition of Intelligence in General....................    413

B. The Interception and Decoding of Secret Japanese Communications ...............    416

C. Failure to Send this Secret Information to Admiral Kimmel .....................    418

XIII.  Resignation of Japanese Cabinet—Arrival of Kurusu—The Possibility of a Surprise

Aggres­sive Movement:

A. The Dispatch of October 16, 1941 ..............................................    418

B. Admiral Stark's Letter of October 17, 1941 ....................................    420

C. Japanese Messages Concerning German Attitude; Nomura's Desire to Resign .......    420

D. Admiral Bloch's Letter on Inadequacy of Local Defense .........................    421

E. Admiral Kimmel's Estimate and Action ..........................................    421

F. The First Japanese "Deadline" Message .........................................    422

G. Admiral Stark's Letter of November 7, 1941 ....................................    422

H. Japanese Interest in Ships at the Philippines and Seattle .....................    423

I. Arrival of Kurusu; Stark and Marshall Recommendation as to Ultimatum ..........    423

J. Further and Final Japanese "Deadline" Messages ................................    424

K. The Possibility of a Surprise Aggressive Movement..............................    425

 XIV.  Dispatches Concerning Reinforcement of Wake and Midway ...........................    426

  XV.  Intercepted Japanese Communications of November 26th and 27th ....................    427

 XVI.  The State Department Note of November 28th .......................................    427

XVII.  The War Warning of November 27th:

A. The Warning....................................................................    430

B. Preparation of the Warning.....................................................    431

C. The Failure to Mention Hawaii..................................................    432

D. The Direction to "Execute an Appropriate Defensive Deployment" ................    433

XVIII. Repetition of Army Dispatch on November 28th:

A. General Marshall...............................................................    435

  IX.  Reinforcement of Midway and Wake .................................................    435

  XX.  Pearl Harbor—Estimates of the Situation:

A. Admiral Kimmel.................................................................    437

B. Admiral Bloch .................................................................    438

C. Admiral Pye....................................................................    438

D. Admiral Smith..................................................................    441

E. Admiral McMorris ..............................................................    443

F. Admiral Delaney ...............................................................    446

G. Admiral Calhoun ...............................................................    447

H. Captain Layton ................................................................    447

I. Admiral Bellinger .............................................................   447

J. Admiral Kitts..................................................................   448

K. Admiral Withers................................................................   448

L. Colonel Phillips...............................................................    448

M. General Short..................................................................    448

 XXI.  Conferences Between Admiral Kimmel and General Short after November 27th .........    449

XXII.  Action Taken by Admiral Kimmel‑Extent of Reconnaissance:

A. In General ....................................................................    450

B. Responsibility for Long Range Reconnaissance ..................................    453

C. Readiness of Aircraft and Drills ..............................................    457

D. Extent of Reconnaissance.......................................................    457

E. Extent of Reconnaissance Which Could Have Been Taken ..........................    457

XXIII. Action Taken by General Short ....................................................    462

XXIV.  Japanese Espionage and United States Intelligence at Pearl Harbor—Japanese Military

and Fleet Movements:

A. Japanese Espionage ............................................................    463

B. United States Intelligence at Pearl Harbor.....................................    466

C. Japanese Military and Fleet Movements..........................................    478

 XXV.  Intercepted Japanese Communications After the "War Warning" and up to December 6,

1941:

A. Failure to Transmit to Admiral Kimmel .........................................    490

B. Concerning the Diplomatic Negotiations and Situation ..........................    491

C. Concerning United States Ships and Planes......................................    496

 

PROCEEDINGS OF HEWITT INQUIRY                                          363

 

Chapter:                                                                                 Page

XXVI.  The "Winds" Code and Messages:

A. The Winds Code ................................................................   501

       B. Monitoring the Code Words .....................................................   502

C. Admiral Kimmel's Knowledge of Winds Code.......................................    502

D. "Winds" Messages Using the Code Words for Russia...............................    502

E. Was There a "Winds Code" Message Relating to the United States? ...............    503

XXVII. Information Sent to Admiral Kimmel After the "War Warning." ......................    510

XXVIII.   The "Mori" Conversation: Japanese Burning Papers ..............................   523

XXIX.  The Likelihood of a Japanese Attack at Hawaii as Estimated in Washington, December

6, 1941:

       A. Navy Estimates.................................................................    525

       B. Army Estimates.................................................................    527

       C. State Department Estimates ....................................................    527

 XXX.  Japanese Message Advising of Fourteen Part Reply and First Thirteen Parts:

A. Message advising of Fourteen Part Reply........................................    527

       B. The First Thirteen Parts of the Reply..........................................    527

       C. Delivery of the Translations of the Above Messages.............................    528

XXXI. December 7, 1941 in Washington:

       A. Intercepted Communications Other Than Part Fourteen and the "1 p.m. Message"...    529

       B. Part Fourteen and the "1 p.m. Message".........................................    530

C. Delivery of Part Fourteen and the "1 p.m. Message" and Action Taken............    531

XXXII. Conditions at Pearl Harbor Prior to Attack:

A. The Ships in Port..............................................................    536

B. The Anti‑aircraft Guns.........................................................    538

C. Army and Navy Conditions of Readiness..........................................    539

D. Number and Condition of the Men................................................    541

E. The Aircraft Warning Service...................................................    542

F. Ships' Radar...................................................................    549

G. Steps Taken by Commander Local Naval Defense Force.............................    550

H. Army Aircraft..................................................................    551

I. The Submarines.................................................................    552

J. Reconnaissance Airplanes and Air Reconnaissance................................    552

XXXIII. The Japanese Attack on Pearl Harbor:

A. Japanese Submarines............................................................    556

B. Detection of Planes by the Army Radar System...................................    561

C. The Air Attack.................................................................    562

D. The Arrival of the Army's Message..............................................    565

E. The Failure to Telephone on December 7th.......................................    566

F. What Could Have Been Done if There Had Been Advance Notice.....................    566

G. The Casualties and Damage......................................................    568

Appendix: List of witness before Court of Inquiry .......................................    571

       List of witnesses before Admiral Hart.............................................    573

Addendum One‑Findings And Conclusions ...................................................    575

 

 

FOREWORD

 

Public Law No. 339, 78th Congress, approved June 13, 1944, directed the Secretary of War and the Secretary of the Navy, severally, to proceed forthwith with an investigation into the facts surrounding the Pearl Harbor catastrophe, and to commence such proceedings against such persons as the facts might justify.

      A Court of Inquiry, consisting of Admiral Orin G. Murfin, U. S. N. (Retired), Admiral Edward C. Kalbfus, U. S. N. (Retired) and Vice Admiral Adolphus Andrews, U. S. N., (Retired), with Commander (Retired) and Biesemeier, U. S. N., as Judge Advocate, was appointed on July 13, 1944. The Court was directed to convene on July 17, 1944, or as soon thereafter as practicable, for the purpose of inquiring into all circumstances connected with the attack made by Japanese forces on Pearl Harbor, Territory of Hawaii, on December 7, 1941; to inquire thoroughly into the matter, and to include in its findings a full statement of the facts it might deem to be  established. The Court was further directed to state its opinion as to whether any offenses were committed or serious blame incurred on the part of any person or persons in the Naval Service, and, in case its opinion was that offenses had been committed or serious blame incurred, to recommend specifically what further proceedings should be had.

The Court of Inquiry commenced its proceedings on July 31, 1944, and sub­mitted the record of its proceedings on October 20, 1944. During its investiga­tion, the Court took the testimony of thirty‑nine witnesses, and received seventy-seven exhibits. Certain portions of the record of proceedings before the Court, including the findings and opinion of the Court, have been classified "TOP SECRET," and the balance "SECRET."

By letter dated October 21, 1944, the Secretary of the Navy requested the commander in Chief, U. S. Fleet, and Chief of Naval Operations to advise as to how much of the records of the Pearl Harbor Court of Inquiry bear such a rela­tion to present military operations as to require high security classification.

The Commander in Chief, U. S. Fleet, and Chief of Naval Operations advised, in a letter dated November 3, 1944, that a substantial part of the records of Pearl Harbor Court of Inquiry bears such a relation to the national security and to current military operations as to make it essential that that information not be revealed publicly.

 

364                  CONGRESSIONAL INVESTIGATION PEARL HARBOR ATTACK

 

After thorough review of the record of proceedings of the Pearl Harbor Court of Inquiry, the Secretary concurred with the views of the Commander in Chief, U. S. Fleet, and Chief of Naval Operations, as expressed in his letter of November 3, 1944, and accordingly has directed that in the best interests of the present and future military operations of the United States, the existing TOP SECRET" and "SECRET" classifications of the record must be continued. The Navy Department has stated that the record of the Court will not be made public while the war is in progress.

The net result of the findings of fact and opinion of the Pearl Harbor Naval Court of Inquiry, as reviewed by Judge Advocate General of the Navy, and the Commander in Chief, U. S. Fleet and Chief of Naval Operations, and by the Secretary of the Navy is that the evidence now available does not warrant and will not support the trial by general court martial of any person or persons in the Naval Service.

The Secretary in his findings upon the evidence before the Court of Inquiry and all the other proceedings in the matter to date, has found that there were errors of judgment on the part of certain officers in the Naval Service, both at Pearl Harbor and at Washington.

The Secretary is not satisfied that the investigation has gone to the point of exhaustion of all possible evidence. Accordingly, he has decided that his own investigation should be further continued until the testimony of every witness in possession of material facts can be obtained and all possible evidence exhausted. Some of the testimony will be much delayed because certain witnesses who are actively engaged in combat against the enemy are not available and will not be available within the predictable future. The present decision of the Secretary will be reviewed when the investigation has been finally completed in the light of the evidence then at hand.

The Secretary made this personal statement to the press on December 1, 1944: "In reaching the above conclusions and decisions I am fully mindful of the wide and legitimate public interest in the Pearl Harbor attack. However, there is one consideration which is paramount to all others, and that is: What will best serve the continued successful prosecution of the war? The actions I have taken in my judgment, are taken in the light of that consideration, and I accept full and complete responsibility for them."

In connection with the Secretary's further investigation, the following statement has been prepared, narrating the evidence obtained by the Court of Inquiry. It is believed that all significant evidence so obtained has been included. Because reference is made to "TOP SECRET" material, this statement has been classified "TOP SECRET."

On June 15, 1944, two days after the enactment of Public Law No. 339 of the 78th Congress, Admiral Thomas C. Hart, USN (Retired), completed an examination of witnesses and the taking of testimony pertinent to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, which had been directed by the Secretary of the Navy in a precept to Admiral Hart, dated February 12, 1944. In the course of his examination, Admiral Hart took the testimony of forty witnesses, some of whom also testified later before the Naval Pearl Harbor Court of Inquiry, and received forty‑two exhibits. Various of the witnesses before Admiral Hart furnished information which does not appear in the Record of Proceedings of the Naval Pearl Harbor Court of Inquiry. The evidence obtained by Admiral Hart has been digested. The following narrative statement of the evidence obtained by the Naval Pearl Harbor Court of Inquiry has been cross‑referenced to the evidence obtained by Admiral Hart. The left‑hand "pink" pages refer to the record of the examination of witnesses conducted by Admiral Hart. It should be noted that the record of proceedings before Admiral Hart has been reclassified as "TOP SECRET."

JOHN F. SONNETT.

 

ADDENDUM TO FOREWORD

 

After reviewing the evidence obtained in the prior investigations and examining the Report of the Army Pearl Harbor Board, the Secretary of the Navy having determined in his Third Endorsement dated 1 December 1944, that it was necessary, by precept, dated 2 May 1945, appointed Admiral H. Kent Hewitt, U. S. Navy, as investigating officer, with John F. Sonnett as counsel, and Lieutenant John Ford Baecher, USNR, as assistant counsel, to examine such witnesses and to obtain such other evidence as might be necessary in order to fully develop the facts in connection with the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. The further investigation by Admiral Hewitt was completed on 12 July 1945.

 

PROCEEDINGS OF HEWITT INQUIRY                                          365

 

A digest of the evidence obtained in the further investigation by Admiral Hewitt has been prepared, and keyed into the following Narrative Statement in the manner in which the evidence adduced before Admiral Hart was treated. The left‑hand yellow page, under the left‑hand pink pages, contain the evidence adduced before Admiral Hewitt, keyed on the white pages at the points indicated by the yellow crayon.

The findings and conclusions of Admiral Hewitt are attached to the following Narrative Statement as Addendum I.

JOHN FORD BAECHER

Lieutenant, USNR.