December 7, 2008

“A Day Which Will Live in Infamy.” Huh?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 2:28 pm

This morning I attended the Pearl Harbor Day ceremonies at my American Legion Post. The public was invited. The Mayor showed up.

There were approximately 25 people there, comprising members of the American Legion, the VFW, Jewish War Veterans and the DAV. Although there were a handful of Vietnam Era Vets (and one who is a vet of Vietnam and Iraq), most of the attendees were WWII vets (mostly men and a few women). A couple of the women were widows of deceased WWII vets. Several of the WWII guys used canes to walk, and a couple needed help on the stairs, but they came. They always do.

I was honored and privileged to be one of the readers. I read President Roosevelt’s address to Congress following the Pearl Harbor attack, and it was interspersed with the remarks of President Bush following the attacks on September 11, 2001, which were read by a WWII vet. There were several other very moving readings.

Before the ceremonies I was talking to my friend Paulie, a Navy Vet. He said that he had stopped at a local diner on his way to the ceremonies. He mentioned to the waitress that he was on his way to Pearl Harbor Memorial ceremonies, and she remarked, “Oh, is that today?’ She was a Navy Vet!

In my personal experience, I have been saddened by how many people under forty don’t know the historic significance of December 7, 1941. Many under thirty don’t even know where Pearl Harbor is, much less have any idea what happened there 67 years ago.

It’s sad.


  1. I’ve not forgotten, nor will I ever. I have a copy of the Honolulu Star-Bulletin from that day on my bookshelf. My grandmother brought it back with her a couple months after the attack, along with her 1-year-old son. They lived in base housing, and my grandfather was a Chief Machinist on a submarine patrolling the Philippines.
    Neither of them spoke of it often, but I will always remember their reaction when we took a family trip to Hawaii in the late 70s.

    Comment by Ken Adams — December 7, 2008 @ 4:02 pm

  2. How can anyone not know what happened on December 7, 1941? I know about it from my study of history, but I will certainly not forget. To all veterans past and present, I offer a very grateful Thank You and God Bless You.

    Comment by Kevin — December 7, 2008 @ 4:29 pm

  3. I’ve had a number of Japanese ask me if/when the U.S. is ever going to forget Pearl Harbor. My answer was generally something along the lines of “Probably about the time you forget Hiroshima and Nagasaki”.

    Comment by DMerriman — December 7, 2008 @ 6:05 pm

  4. A clash of cultures caused as much by the arrogance of both as anything. The real irony is that the war was actually about who was gonna get to sell 2 billion ball point pens to the Chinese..and as it turned out the Chinese sell them to both Japan and the USA…heh.

    Comment by GUYK — December 7, 2008 @ 6:22 pm

  5. I will never forget. And feeling badly as this morning, I thought of this day 67 years ago, and I wondered if there were any ceremonies to attend, or if I might be able to find some other way to see some vets… But I did not find any and I feel it is my loss and dishonor that I did not. Thank you for sharing it means a lot.

    Comment by jck — December 7, 2008 @ 6:35 pm

  6. The sad truth is far to many American`s have no clue what happened on 12/7/41. Why?……they do not teach civics or American history in our public schools anymore.

    The Liberal Socialist Control over our educational system will not let truth or history get in the way of the construction of the Socialist American society.

    As bad as the Attack on Pearl Harbor was & we should never forget …….9/11 was more costly in human life, economically & emotionally….look how fast the Liberal Socialists were able to shove this to the back of relevance for the youth of America courtesy of our Liberal Media.

    Comment by dudley1 — December 7, 2008 @ 8:03 pm

  7. dudley..and even sadder is that probably 75 percent of the population has no idea of why the Japanese decided to attack!

    Comment by GUYK — December 7, 2008 @ 8:18 pm

  8. It’s just like in those “man on the street” things where they ask “typical” Americans some *basic* questions about our country or our form of government or our world, and the “typical” Americans don’t know ANYTHING about history, even RECENT history, but they can name every one of Angelina’s adopted kids.

    It IS sad.

    Comment by dogette — December 8, 2008 @ 8:58 am

  9. For me, personally in my scope of historical research (military and rock n roll), these are a bad 2 days. One day changed the face of the world and the other changed the face of rock n roll.
    It is mindblowing to think a fleet THAT large came to within 220 miles of Pearl Harbor without being detected at all. I understand all the screw-ups regarding the radar station, the 14 point note and all that but just knowing the brunt of the Japanese fleet was roughly 200 miles off their shore and no one had a clue is just astounding.
    When you look at the battle maps for the Japanese aviators, even if the American General didn’t line those planes up in a row making them easy pickin’s there was little belief that the American fighters would have even gotten airborne in numbers enough to ward off the attack.
    One of my weird little quirks is laughing everytime I see an American driving a Mitsubishi…….our neighbors are driving a car by the company that made the Jap Zero!!!
    To all of our vets who served in that horrible war, this former U.S Army Ranger raises his pint glass to you in honor and respect.
    Oh and December 8th, 1980….Mark David Chapman….you scumbag motherfucker…may you rot in hell forever. Rest in Peace, John Lennon. Your music inspired me to play rock n roll and I think of you everytime I play. I always wondered what you had left for us.

    Comment by Robbie K. — December 8, 2008 @ 10:12 am

  10. GuyK…….

    In reality close to 99.9% of American`s do not have any idea as to why Japan felt it was necessary to attack the United State`s. If people were really aware of the events leading up to WW2 in the Pacific & some of our actions……a different opinion might be rendered.

    I am not excusing what the Japanese did or the brutality of the Japanese military, but we went to war against the British for far less to gain our independence then what our actions provided to the Japanese as a requirement for the need to go to war.

    Sometimes the truth does not conform to historical fact as compiled by the victorious. Japan was under the control of a military regime & attempting to creat a Japanese zone of influence to support the Empires need for raw materials & resources. We the United States stood in their way at times both provocatively & belligerently in our attempts to isolate & quarantine Japan. The rest is history with much of the truth not under consideration.

    Comment by dudley1 — December 9, 2008 @ 11:22 am

  11. According to reverend wright we bombed Hiroshima on Dec 7th, 1941. What a schmuck.

    Comment by Don — December 17, 2008 @ 10:28 am

  12. My Children are 6 and 3 they know their great grandfather fought in WWII in the Army Air Corps. If I see a veteran in a store or otherwise wearing a hat that indicates he is a veteran, I take the time to thank them for their service. You would be amazed how many have tears in their eyes after being told a simple “thank you for serving our country and protecting our freedom”.

    Comment by Twoblondiesmommy — April 7, 2009 @ 2:46 pm

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