National Geographic : 1992 Apr
Forum Return to Pearl Harbor I've read hundreds of articles and dozens of books about Pearl Harbor, but nothing presents so clear and graphic a summary as your December 1991 article. I recall very well where I was that fateful December 7 -working for one of the so-called war plants, Bell Aircraft Corporation in Buffalo, New York, producing airplanes, mainly for the Rus sians for lend-lease. Everybody knew that we could not stay out of the war in Europe forever and that a war with Japan was probably inevitable too. That Sunday with the plant going full blast the loudspeakers came on announcing the attack. HARRY M. ZUBKOFF Silver Spring, Maryland This superb piece makes indelible in the mind of this ad-libber at CNN the fateful pictures from that day of horror. BERNARD SHAW Washington, D. C. As the 19-year-old private who received General Marshall's warning message to General Short, I must correct certain facts on pages 69 and 75. The message was marked "Urgent," but the RCA Honolulu office put it in an ordinary telegram envelope. It was delivered during the attack about 8:45 a.m., not 11:45 as you indicate. Being extremely busy with operational messages and expecting only personal messages from RCA, I put it with others in my drawer for delivery later. Around 10:30 a.m. my phone rang and a voice said, "This is General Marshall and I want to speak to General Short." I redirected his call. Around 11:45 a Morse code message came from Washing ton: "General Marshall is standing behind me and wants to know who is operator S, and where is the message he signed for from RCA?" The bottom dropped out of my stomach as I leafed through my drawer and found the cable addressed to the com manding general. The time stamp of receipt by RCA in Honolulu was 6:33 a.m., not 7:33 as the historical records indicate. My question is: "Why, if General Marshall could call us by commercial telephone after the attack, didn't he call before?" W. B. STEVENS Naples, Florida We areforwardingsuch letters disputingthe histori cal record to historiansat the U. S. Army Center of MilitaryHistory. NOTRE DAME, PARIS, FRANCE. 11:07 A.M. STILL GOING.