“A general dissolution of principles and manners will more surely overthrow the liberties of America than the whole force of the common enemy. While the people are virtuous they cannot be subdued; but when once they lose their virtue then will be ready to surrender their liberties to the first external or internal invader.” — Samuel Adams
The Battle of Midway is widely regarded as the most important naval battle of the Pacific Campaign of World War II. Between June 4-7. 1942, only six months after Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor, and one month after the Battle of the Coral Sea, the United States Navy decisively defeated an Imperial Japanese Navy attack against Midway Atoll, inflicting irreparable damage on the Japanese fleet. Military historian John Keegan has called it "the most stunning and decisive blow in the history of naval warfare."
The Japanese operation, like the earlier attack on Pearl Harbor, sought to eliminate the United States as a strategic power in the Pacific, thereby giving Japan a free hand in establishing its Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere. The Japanese hoped that another demoralizing defeat would force the U.S. to capitulate in the Pacific War.
The Japanese plan was to lure the United States' aircraft carriers into a trap. The Japanese also intended to occupy Midway Atoll as part of an overall plan to extend their defensive perimeter in response to the Doolittle Raid. This operation was also considered preparatory for further attacks against Fiji and Samoa.
The plan was handicapped by faulty Japanese assumptions of the American reaction and poor initial dispositions. Most significantly, American code breakers were able to determine the date and location of the attack, enabling the forewarned U.S. Navy to set up an ambush of its own. Four Japanese aircraft carriers and a heavy cruiser were sunk for a cost of one American aircraft carrier and a destroyer. After Midway, and the exhausting attrition of the Solomon Islands campaign, Japan's shipbuilding and pilot training programs were unable to keep pace in replacing their losses while the U.S. steadily increased its output in both areas.
Admiral Yamamoto, the overall commander of Japanese naval forces, did not know that the U.S. had broken the main Japanese naval code (dubbed JN-25 by the Americans). Yamamoto's emphasis on dispersal also meant that none of his formations could support each other. For instance, the only significant warships larger than destroyers that screened Nagumo's fleet were two battleships and three cruisers, despite his carriers being expected to carry out the strikes and bear the brunt of American counterattacks. By contrast, the flotillas of Yamamoto and Kondo had between them two light carriers, five battleships, and six cruisers, none of which would see any action at Midway. Their distance from Nagumo's carriers would also have grave implications during the battle, because the larger warships in Yamamoto,s and Kondo's forces carried scout planes, an invaluable reconnaissance capability denied to Nagumo.
The Battle of Midway was decisive in turning the tide against Japan and securing the security of the Pacific Coast and Hawaiian Islands. It was a crushing defeat for Yamamoto.
Operation Vengeance was the name given by the Americans to the military operation to kill Japanese Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto on April 18, 1943, during the Solomon Islands campaign in the Pacific Theater of World War II. Isoroku Yamamoto, commander of the Combined Fleet of the Imperial Japanese Navy, was killed on Bougainville Island when his transport bomber aircraft was shot down by U.S. Army fighter aircraft operating from Henderson Field on Guadalcanal.
The mission of the U.S. aircraft was specifically to kill Yamamoto and was based on United States Navy intelligence on Yamamoto's travel plans in the Solomon Islands area. The death of Yamamoto reportedly damaged the morale of Japanese naval personnel (described by Samuel Eliot Morison as being considered the equivalent of a major defeat in battle), raised the morale of the Allied forces, and may have been intended as revenge by U.S. leaders who blamed Yamamoto for the Pearl Harbor attack which initiated the formal state of war between Imperial Japan and the U.S.
Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto, commander of the Imperial Japanese Navy, scheduled an inspection tour of the Solomon Islands and New Guinea. He planned to inspect Japanese air units participating in the I-Go operation that had begun April 7, 1943, and to boost Japanese morale following the disastrous evacuation of Guadalcanal. On April 14, the U.S. naval intelligence effort code-named "Magic" intercepted and decrypted orders alerting affected Japanese units of the tour.
The original message, NTF131755, addressed to the commanders of Base Unit No. 1, the 11th Air Flotilla, and the 26th Air Flotilla, was encoded in the Japanese Naval Cipher JN-25D (Naval Operations Code Book of the third version of RO), and was picked up by three stations of the "Magic" apparatus, including Fleet Radio Unit Pacific Fleet. The message was then deciphered by Navy cryptographers (among them future Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens; it contained specific details regarding Yamamoto's arrival and departure times and locations, as well as the number and types of planes that would transport and accompany him on the journey.
In 1942 England was suffering from the effects of German U-Boats. Convoys were being decimated by Admiral Donitz’s “Wolf Packs.” Both of the two German electro-mechanical rotor machines whose signals were decrypted at Bletchley Park, Enigma and the Lorenz Cipher', were virtually unbreakable if properly used. It was poor operational procedures and sloppy operator behavior that allowed the British cryptanalysts to find ways to read them.
The intelligence produced from decrypts at Bletchley was code-named "Ultra". It contributed greatly to Allied success in defeating the U-boats in the Battle of the Atlantic, and to the British naval victories in the Battle of Cape Matapan and the Battle of North Cape. In 1941, Ultra exerted a powerful effect on the North African desert campaign, against the German army, under General Erwin Rommel. General Sir Claude Auchinleck stated that, but for Ultra — "Rommel would have certainly got through to Cairo". Prior to the Normandy landings on D-Day in June 1944, the Allies knew the locations of all but two of the 58 German divisions on the Western front. Churchill referred to the Bletchley staff as "The geese that laid the golden eggs and never cackled".
These three examples illustrate the importance of keeping secrets during war time. Suppose some enterprising reporter for the New York Times had found out that the Americans were breaking the JN25 code. The Japanese would have changed the code and Midway would have been a disaster for the U.S. Navy and left our west coast completely undefended. Or a reporter for the Washington Post spilled the beans on how we broke the code to ambush Admiral Yamamoto. Once again the Japanese would have changed their codes and would have had a much tougher time at Iwo Jima and Okinawa. Many thousands of Marines, soldiers, and sailors would have died because some bone-headed newspaper editor belived he had the right to tell the secrets.
Ultra was kept a secret long after the war because we were using it to monitor the Soviet Union. There was an article in the New York Times telling the story of Ultra and fortunately Churchill had it squashed and the Soviets did not believe it.
Now move forward to the killing of Osama Bin Laden. Judicial Watch, the organization that investigates and fights government corruption, announced on May 22 that it had obtained records from the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) regarding meetings and communications between government agencies and Kathryn Bigelow, Academy Award-winning director of The Hurt Locker, and screenwriter Mark Boal. According to the records, the Obama Defense Department granted Bigelow and Boal access to a “planner, Operator and Commander of SEAL Team Six,” which was responsible for the capture and killing of Osama bin Laden, to assist Bigelow prepare her upcoming feature film, Zero Dark Thirty.
The records, obtained pursuant to court order in a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit filed on January 21, 2012, include 153 pages of records from the DOD and 113 pages of records from the CIA (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of Defense (No. 1:12-cv-00049). The documents were delivered to Judicial Watch late last Friday (May 18). The following are the highlights from the records, which include internal Defense Department email correspondence as well as a transcript from a key July 14, 2011, meeting between DOD officials, Bigelow and Boal:
- “A transcript of a July 14, 2011, meeting between DOD officials, including Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence Michael Vickers, Bigelow and Boal indicates that Boal met directly with White House officials on at least two occasions regarding the film: “I took your guidance and spoke to the WH and had a good meeting with Brennan and McDonough and I plan to follow up with them; and they were forward leaning and interested in sharing their point of view; command and control; so that was great, thank you,” Boal said according to the transcript. Vickers asks if the meeting was a follow-up, to which Boal responds, “Yes correct; this was a follow-up.” The documents seemingly reference John O. Brennan, Chief Counterterrorism Advisor to President Obama and Denis McDonough, who serves as President Obama’s Deputy National Security Advisor.
- The July 14, 2011, meeting transcript also reveals that the DOD provided the filmmakers with the identity of a “planner, SEAL Team 6 Operator and Commander.” (The name is blacked out in the document.) In proposing the arrangement, Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence Michael Vickers said: “The only thing we ask is that you not reveal his name in any way as a consultant because . . . he shouldn’t be talking out of school.” Vickers went on to say during the meeting at the Pentagon: “This at least, this gives him one step removed and he knows what he can and can’t say, but this way at least he can be as open as he can with you and it ought to meet your needs.” Boal later responds, “You delivered.”
- A July 13, 2011, internal CIA email indicates that Bigelow and Boal were granted access to “the Vault,” which is described the CIA building where some of the tactical planning for the bin Laden raid took place: “I was given your name as the POC in [redacted] who could determine the feasibility of having a potential walk-through of…the Vault in the [redacted] building that was used for some of the tactical planning in the Bin Laden Raid [sic]. In consultation with the Office of Public Affairs and as part of the larger chronicling of the Bin Laden raid, OPA will be hosting some visitors sanctioned by ODCIA this Friday afternoon.” (The name of the sender is blacked out.) “Of course this is doable,” an official responds.
- DOD Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs Douglas Wilson told colleagues in a June 13, 2011, email to limit media access and that he would follow up with the White House: “I think this looks very good as a way forward, and agree particularly that we need to be careful here so we don’t open the media floodgates on this. I’m going to check with WH to update them on status, and will report back.” A day later, he wrote Department of Defense communications staffers, saying: “Ok to set up the second session with Vickers. I am getting additional guidance from WH.”
- Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence Michael Vickers told Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs Douglas Wilson and two other DOD communications staffers in a June 13, 2011, email that “[DOD] would like to shape the story to prevent any gross inaccuracies, but do not want to make it look like the commanders think it’s okay to talk to the media.” The email went on to say: “For the intelligence case, they are basically using the WH-approved talking points we used the night of the operation.” The talking points called the raid “a ‘Gutsy Decision’ by the POTUS,” adding that “WH involvement was critical.”
- A June 9, 2011, email from Commander Bob Mehal, Public Affairs Officer for Defense Press Operations, to Vickers and other DOD staff summarizes a meeting with Boal and notes the release date for the film: “Release date set for 4th Qtr 2012…”
- A July 13, 2011, email to Commander Bob Mehal, Public Affairs Officer for Defense Press Operations, indicates that Sarah Zukowski, an associate for The Glover Park Group, arranged the July 14, 2011 visit by Bigelow and Boal to the DOD and the CIA. The Glover Park Group is described by Politico as a “Democratic-leaning advocacy firm.”
- A June 27, 2011, email to an official at the Office of the Secretary of Defense suggests that the request from Bigelow and Boal to meet with Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence Michael Vickers came via the White House press office. A June 22, 2011, email to Commander Bob Mehal, Public Affairs Officer for Defense Press Operations notes, “The White House does want to engage with Mark but it probably won’t be for a few more weeks. We should provide them a read-out of the session you do with Vickers.” The name of the White House official who forwarded the request is blacked out.
Judicial Watch launched its investigation of Bigelow’s meetings with the Obama administration following press reports suggesting that the Obama administration may have leaked classified information to the director as source material for Bigelow’s film.
New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd wrote that the information leak was designed to help the Obama 2012 presidential reelection campaign: “The White House is also counting on the Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal big-screen version of the killing of Bin Laden to counter Obama’s growing reputation as ineffectual. The Sony film by the Oscar-winning pair who made ‘The Hurt Locker’ will no doubt reflect the president’s cool, gutsy decision against shaky odds. Just as Obamaland was hoping, the movie is scheduled to open on Oct. 12, 2012 — perfectly timed to give a home-stretch boost to a campaign that has grown tougher.”
In addition to Judicial Watch’s pursuit of the bin Laden film records, the organization continues to fight in court for the release of the bin Laden post-mortem photos and video. The Obama administration continues to withhold these records citing national security concerns.
“These documents, which took nine months and a federal lawsuit to disgorge from the Obama administration, show that politically-connected film makers were giving extraordinary and secret access to bin Laden raid information, including the identity of a Seal Team Six leader,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “It is both ironic and hypocritical that the Obama administration stonewalled Judicial Watch’s pursuit of the bin Laden death photos, citing national security concerns, yet seemed willing to share intimate details regarding the raid to help Hollywood filmmakers release a movie ‘perfectly timed to give a home-stretch boost’ to the Obama campaign.”
Sony Pictures has already decided not to release the film Zero Dark Thirty — also about the assassination of the Al Qaeda leader — until December. Its release date of December 19 was set after the scheduled release date for October drew criticism of the Republican Party.
Another film be produced by Democrat Party bundler Harvey Weinstein titled Code Name: Geronimo. The dramatic film about the assassination of Osama Bin Laden could be controversially released before the U.S presidential elections in November.
Movie mogul Harvey Weinstein - a supporter of the Democratic Party — is in negotiations to buy Code Name Geronimo at the Cannes Film Festival.
It is believed the film producer will release the film in late September or October — which is likely to infuriate President Obama's Republican opponents. The Daily Mail reports:
“Footage from the film was shown for the first time in Cannes on Wednesday. It is directed by John Stockwell.
The film tells the story of the manhunt for Osama Bin Laden and the efforts of the Navy Seals.
It is in the final stages of production and its asking price is rumoured to be $2million.
Sony has said it has no plans of moving its release date for Zero Dark Thirty, which is directed by Kathryn Bigelow, who famously directed Oscar-winning film The Hurt Locker.
Mr Weinstein previously released the anti-Bush documentary by Michael Moore 'Fahrenheit 9/11' shortly before the elections in 2004.
Osama Bin Laden was killed in May last year when U.S. Navy Seals raided the building in Abbottabad, Pakistan, that the terrorist mastermind had lived in for five years.
The raid was completed shortly after 1 am local time when bin Laden was shot once in the chest and once in the head by a U.S Navy Seal who announced 'For God and country Geronimo, Geronimo, Geronimo', because Geronimo was the code-name given to the Al Qaeda leader.”
While Hurt Locker, like Black Hawk Down were good films based on true events they did not pose a national security threat or a threat to any of the real people portrayed in the films. They gave away no secrets of how our special operations teams operate or the secrets we obtained during the operations.
Code Name: Geronimo and especially Zero Dark Thirty do pose a threat to our national security. There was a poster during WWII that was posted on every military base that said, “Loose Lips Sink Ships.”
I have three major concerns with these films as to how they can affect our national security and pose a threat to our special operations community.
One: The mere fact that we succeeded is a problem. Dr. Teller, the father of the H-Bomb once replied when asked who was responsible for the Soviet Union getting the Atomic Bomb so quickly after WWII. He replied, “We were, we showed them it worked and gave them the incentive to make the investment in the technology.” By showing how our special operations teams plan and execute missions we are giving the enemy a great deal of intelligence — intelligence they will use to thwart future efforts.
Two: If in any way members of the special operations community can be identified their lives and the lives of their families will be at risk. Just think if Al Qaeda could hold the family of a special operations family hostage for the purpose of obtaining intelligence. The special operations unit soldier, sailor of Marine would be forced to choose between his country and his family.
A good friend of mine, a retired captain in the U.S. Navy once had the job of overseeing the drug interdiction program in the Caribbean. He was based in the Florida Keys. He told me that every day he was videotaped on his way to and from work and the leaders of the drug cartel knew where he and his family lived. He was under constant surveillance by the drug runners and Navel Intelligence. Due to the constant stress he lasted less than a year at this duty station.
Three: How politicians can force agencies like the DOD and CIA to give sensitive intelligence information to civilians for the purpose of making a for-profit movie. I am sure if Wild Bill Donovan or Alan Dulles was running the CIA they would have kicked Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal from Langley all the way to Maryland. This is what happens when big Hollywood “A” list contributors and bundlers pass on millions of dollars to the Obama administration. His payback is granting them access to information they should not have — for the purpose of making a film that will glorify his one accomplishment — issuing the order to kill bin Laden.
It is too close in time to the actual events of killing bin Laden to be making a film with this much information. Even the History and Military Channels are careful as to what the put out and have never had this type of access. They normally work using interviews with real people who were involved or know what was happening. They just can’t walk into the CIA and DOD and open the files marked secret.
Today, in Pakistan, the doctor who assisted the CIA in identifying Osama bin Laden, Shakil Afridi, who ran a fake vaccination program in an attempt to collect Bin Laden's DNA in order to verify he was living in the Abbottabad compound where he was eventually killed a year ago is languishing in a prison for 33 years convicted of treason. The Guardian reports:
“A US senate committee has voted to cut Pakistan's aid by $1m for each of the 33 years of a prison sentence given to a doctor for helping the CIA to track down Osama bin Laden.
The appropriations committee unanimously approved the $33m reduction as outrage grows in Washington over the conviction of Shakil Afridi for treason . The physician ran a fake vaccination programme in an attempt to collect Bin Laden's DNA in order to verify he was living in the Abbottabad compound where he was eventually killed a year ago.
The aid cut will not be immediately implemented as it comes out of next year's budget, but it will increase the pressure on the Pakistan government as Washington seeks to have Afridi's conviction quashed or his sentence substantially reduced.
The appropriations committee debate reflected the frustration at what many in Washington see as Pakistan's duplicity that has bubbled away for many years over the links between its intelligence service and the Taliban, and was accentuated when it was revealed that Bin Laden was living untouched in a garrison town.
"We need Pakistan. Pakistan needs us," said Senator Lindsey Graham, who helped write the legislation cutting aid. "But we don't need a Pakistan that is just double dealing."
Senator Dianne Feinstein voiced a repeatedly-heard sentiment on Capitol Hill since Afridi's conviction that it was outrageous to convict him of treason when he was helping not harming Pakistan by contributing to Bin Laden's demise.”
How will this film help Dr. Afridi? Or will it heap more misery on a person who assisted the U.S. Government in bringing bin Laden down. after Afridi's role was made public, US officials openly acknowledged it including the defense secretary, Leon Panetta – who was CIA director when Bin Laden was killed– who described the doctor as having been "very helpful" in gathering intelligence on the al-Qaida leader. In their rush to “spike the football” for Obama CIA and DOD officials along with other White House spokespersons began releasing information on how they were able to identify bin Laden and the great job they did. They paid little mind to the information they were giving to Pakistan, Al Qaida, and other terrorist groups. This information should have been restricted and released over the ensuing years like the breaking on the JN25 code and Ultra.
If you have ever worked with government employees or had any experience in Washington, D.C. you know you will always find people who in a wish to feather their own nests will inevitable begin to whisper information for the purpose of showing how connected they are. This is a common occurrence in Washington, D.C. It’s how you make points with your peers and demonstrate how you are a part of the inner circle. No administration has acted as irresponsible in this national security matter as the Obama administration. I am sure remarks like this will not encourage the recruiting of other foreign assets to help the CIA.
Now we have the CIA and DOD personnel giving access to confidential documents for the purpose of making films that will make them appear as brilliant masterminds with no thought to the damage that will accrue to some of participants like Dr. Afridi. I recall the hubbub over the leaking of Valarie Plame’s name as a CIA employee to Robert Novak. As it turned out the leaker (Richard Armitage) was never prosecuted, but an aide to Dick Cheney, Scooter Libby was.
Homeland Security Committee Chairman Peter King. (R-N.Y)., first raised questions about the bin Laden movie last summer, but said newly released documents confirm his suspicions.
King referred to documents obtained by Judicial Watch in a Freedom of Information Act request. He said the filmmakers received "extremely close, unprecedented and potentially dangerous collaboration" from the Obama administration.
Judicial Watch said the documents show that the Defense Department granted Bigelow and Boal access to a "planner, operator and commander of SEAL Team 6" — the unit that killed bin Laden in Pakistan.
Judicial Watch says it obtained the documents under the Freedom of Information Act, which is often used to force agencies to release some classified information.
“These documents, which took nine months and a federal lawsuit to disgorge from the Obama administration, show that politically-connected filmmakers were given extraordinary and secret access to bin Laden raid information, including the identity of a Seal Team Six leader,” Judicial Watch’s statement reads.
Most of the names and locations in the released batch were redacted, but the contents of the transcripts indicate that the filmmakers were allowed to visit several highly classified facilities, including “The Vault” at CIA headquarters, where some of the planning for the bin Laden raid took place.
Bigelow and Boal have also met with one of the planners of the operation. The documents show that Pentagon intelligence chief Michael Vickers stressed to the crew that the identity of the SEAL team leader and the fact that he worked as a consultant should not be revealed, because he should not be “talking out of school.” It should also be noted that the person who arranged the meeting with the filmmakers and CIA
CBS News reported:
“The documents, obtained by the conservative watchdog group Judicial Watch via a Freedom of Information Act suit, also show the filmmakers coordinated with the White House and a left-leaning lobbying firm in order to gain access to the information they sought for their upcoming movie on the bin Laden raid. The Defense Department tells CBS News that no classified information was released to the filmmakers, but at least one Republican congressman, House Homeland Security Chairman Peter King of New York, expressed concerns today about the possibility.
One of the documents released, a transcript from a July 14, 2011 meeting, indicates that Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence Michael Vickers helped arrange special meetings for the filmmakers, Academy Award-winning director Kathryn Bigelow and screenwriter Mark Boal.
"The basic idea is they'll make a guy available who was involved from the beginning as a planner; a SEAL Team 6 Operator and Commander," Vickers said in the meeting. Some of the names Vicker mentions are redacted in the transcript. "A guy named [redacted] ... he basically can probably give you everything you would want or would get from Adm Olson or Adm McRaven," the transcript says, referring to former United States Special Operations Command Commander Admiral Eric Olson and Naval Special Operations Commander Admiral Bill McRaven.
Boal responds, "That's dynamite."
In the transcript released, Boal also suggests that he met with John Brennan, President Obama's chief counterterrorism adviser, and Denis McDonough, Mr. Obama's deputy national security adviser. "I took your guidance and spoke to the WH and had a good meeting with Brennan and McDonough," he said, according to the transcript.
Additionally, internal CIA emails from that month suggest Bigelow and Boal were granted access to "the Vault," a CIA building where some of the planning for the raid took place. In a series of emails asking for access to the Vault, an official says, "Of course this is doable." The people corresponding then arrange a time for a tour of the facility.
Released emails also suggest that Vicker's meeting with Bigelow and Boal was in part facilitated by the White House and that the left-leaning lobbying firm The Glover Park Group also helped the filmmakers meet with officials.”
It is obvious to me that the White House and Sony Pictures are working hand in glove with Bigelow and Boal to create a film that will put the Obama administration in the best possible light. Even though Sony Pictures changed the release date to after the November elections in order to save some face I am sure you will begin to see trailers for the film long before the November 6th. I am also certain that these trailers seen in theaters and on TV will show scenes of Obama in the situation room at the White House. As the old Chinese philosopher Confucius said, “a picture is worth a thousand words.”
These Hollywood elites in their urge to support a leftist progressive politician and make money in doing so will claim free speech and the public right to know as their defense against any criticism.
Saul Alinsky’s remarks in Rules for Radicals are certainly applicable to the folks in Hollywood when it comes to national security; “I have on occasion remarked that I felt confident that I could persuade a millionaire on a Friday to subsidize a revolution for Saturday out of which he would make a huge profit on Sunday even though he was certain to be executed on Monday.”