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calendar   Monday - August 01, 2011

britain at war … a real one … august 1st, 1941

Every day for the last few years, The Telegraph has been running a reproduction, reduced in size of course, of the lead stories and page leading up to and then including events of the 2nd World War. 
Usually they are short and just the bare bone headlines and comments.  They are really very interesting and I think it’s a good way to present history.
Today’s war story is from August 1st, but it’s not the phony war in Libya 2011, where modern planes, unopposed, are now strafing and bombing TV stations.
Really.  You couldn’t make this up.
The newspaper and radio news say that attacks were made against Transmitters and the TV stations to, “PROTECT CIVILIANS.” So help me that is exactly word for word the quote.  Oh, and a chief commander, a general who defected from Gaddafi forces and was leading the folks who previously were called rebels but are now officially recognized by Brits and French as .... the Provisional Libyan Government, well the general was shot dead by ..... wanna guess?  anyone?

Hard Line Muslims! Now see ... there’s something right away wrong with that news report because the muzzies fighting against Gaddafi are supposed to be only the good muzzies.  Not those other rop lice farms. 

So then ..... it’s August 1st .... 1941 for awhile.  This is a very interesting read.  It isn’t available on line.  I called the Telegraph and spoke to someone there and they very kindly emailed me the following, which btw took me more then an hour to lay out as close to the way they had it as possible here.  And I also had to do it twice due to a goof I made.  I have no idea what is meant by Japan’s “medical condition” unless it was a typesetting error at the paper. I have reproduced it here exactly as sent to me. Enjoy.

BRITAIN AT WAR


The Daily Telegraph and Morning Post LONDON, FRIDAY, AUGUST 1, 1941

U.S. MOVE IN ECONOMIC WAR AGAINST AXIS

ROOSEVELT SETS UP DEFENCE BOARD

INTENSIFIED Anglo–American economic warfare against the Axis and its associates, including Japan, is the primary purpose of the appointment by President Roosevelt tonight of a United States Economic Defence Board.

The Board, which is headed by the Vice–President, Mr. Henry Wallace, will maintain close contact with the British Ministry of Economic Warfare. 

The establishment of the Board follows the issue of a blacklist of Axis firms in South America and neutral countries, and the embargoes against Japan.

A notable change which the President’s executive order makes is to give administrative authority to the Vice President.

Vice Presidents usually do nothing but preside over the Senate. But Mr. Wallace is looked upon by many as a Presidential possibility, and it was politically desirable to give him an important defence post that would keep him in the public eye.

SERVICE CONFERENCES

The frequency with which the President is calling in his naval and military advisors for consultation on the critical developments in the Far East is arousing especial interest in Washington because of the widely known Service opinion on Japan’s present medical condition.

Service chiefs do not advise the President on policy, but can assume as a hypothesis that a certain policy has been accepted and proceed from that to draw conclusions on how events would work out.

The hypothesis on which the Service departments are now working is that the United States would resist any attack on the Dutch East Indies by Japan.

The possibility of such an attack has been publicly referred to by the President himself when he stated that Japan has been allowed to purchase American oil in an effort to prevent it.

Thus, if a contrary policy is followed and the economic weapons recently acquired by the President are used to clamp down a tight oil embargo, a Japanese attack may be anticipated.

There are some officials who feel that a loaded economic gun should be pointed towards Japan, but should not yet be fired. Others urge that the sooner it is fired the better. 

This is where the view of the Service experts becomes interesting. They start from the assumption that Japan is the third most war–weary nation in the world today, only Italy and Spain being more so. Her resources are strained and her armed forces dangerously extended.

By a great effort her army might be increased to 66 divisions, but that is held to be the limit. Even if 10 extra divisions can be sent to Siberia the Japanese forces would not be as great as the Russians, whose Siberian army is thought to comprise 30 divisions.

A drive southward might appear more promising, therefore, to Tokyo.

But Japanese warplanes are not as modern as the British, Dutch and American aircraft in that area, and her first–line strength is not placed higher than 2,000 or 3,000.

Her chief difficulty, however, is oil. If no oil can be imported and vigorous combatant work has to be undertaken, aircraft, mechanised equipment and naval vessels will use up Japan’s reserves rapidly.

This constitutes another reason for attack on the Dutch East Indies.

But naval forces engaged in such an attack would be operating far from their bases, and the land forces available are comparatively small, while bombing attacks would amount to suicide excursions, since interception would be possible both from Malaya and the Philippines.

In other words, always assuming that the United States is ready to engage in a shooting war, a Japanese attack on the Dutch East Indies would be a gamble with the dice loaded against Japan. 

It is possible that the bombing of the gunboat Tutuila may have been deliberately designed to test American opinion. If so, Tokyo cannot have derived any satisfaction from the result, since the immediate reaction of Congress as well as one of the Administration was one of vigorous protest.

Copyright: Telegraph Group Ltd


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Posted by peiper   United Kingdom  on 08/01/2011 at 06:03 PM   
Filed Under: • War-Stories •  
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