Carbolic Flashback: December 6, 1941: “The Only Thing We Have to Fear From the Japanese is Fear of the Japanese Itself”

Commentary by Carbolic Smoke Ball Editor, The Honorable Rufus Peckham

 The State Department is up to its usual shenanigans, concocting all manner of artifice to goad, cajole, wheedle and incite the gentle and peace-loving people of Japan into attacking the United States of America. Less than two weeks ago, our Secretary of State Cordell Hull unilaterally demanded that the Japanese withdraw all their troops from China in an attempt to provoke a Japanese attack.

 It won’t happen. The Japanese will, of course, never attack the United States of America, despite whatever geo-political legerdemain the State Department employs. You heard it here first.

I have studied the Japanese closely for many years, their quaint and inscrutable ways, and I am certain beyond any reasonable doubt that Japan would immediately drop any designs it has on mainland China if it meant militarily tangling with us. The fact of the matter is, the Japanese care not a whit about whether they lose face in the international community by backing down when pushed. Trust me on this one.

I am also thoroughly familiar with the Japanese military, and I am certain that they do not possess the capability of launching an attack on our Pacific fleet, and they know it. Moreover, I have personally met their Imperial General Hideki Tojo (he once gave me a recipe for raisin bread--true story), and I found him to be a fun-loving, gregarious man more concerned with peace than any so-called imperial designs.

No further exegesis on this point is warranted, since the thing the State Department seems bent on inciting simply is an impossibility.

Now, whether the Japanese should withdraw from China is another matter. No useful purpose would be served by responding to the self-serving blather of Secretary of State Cordell Hull’s November 26 note to the Japanese that demanded their complete withdrawal from mainland China. Japan has expended tremendous national resources to dominate China, and Hull would completely eviscerate all of that hard work. The domination Japan seeks is part and parcel of its larger expansionist interests, which may not be such a bad thing, truth be told.

But that is the subject of another editorial. For now, it is my opinion that the American people are bored to tears with this Japanese topic, and I will not bother them further with it.