A Matter of Honor

A Matter of Honor

Pearl Harbor : Betrayal, Blame, and A Family's Quest for Justice

Book - 2016 | First edition.
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On the seventy-fifth anniversary, the authors of Pulitzer Prize finalist The Eleventh Day unravel the mysteries of Pearl Harbor to expose the scapegoating of the admiral who was in command the day 2,000 Americans died, report on the continuing struggle to restore his lost honor--and clear President Franklin D. Roosevelt of the charge that he knew the attack was coming.

The Japanese onslaught on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 devastated Americans and precipitated entry into World War II. In the aftermath, Admiral Husband Kimmel, Commander-in-Chief of the Pacific Fleet, was relieved of command, accused of negligence and dereliction of duty--publicly disgraced.

But the Admiral defended his actions through eight investigations and for the rest of his long life. The evidence against him was less than solid. High military and political officials had failed to provide Kimmel and his Army counterpart with vital intelligence. Later, to hide the biggest U.S. intelligence secret of the day, they covered it up.

Following the Admiral's death, his sons--both Navy veterans--fought on to clear his name. Now that they in turn are dead, Kimmel's grandsons continue the struggle. For them, 2016 is a pivotal year.

With unprecedented access to documents, diaries and letters, and the family's cooperation, Summers' and Swan's search for the truth has taken them far beyond the Kimmel story--to explore claims of duplicity and betrayal in high places in Washington.

A Matter of Honor is a provocative story of politics and war, of a man willing to sacrifice himself for his country only to be sacrificed himself. Revelatory and definitive, it is an invaluable contribution to our understanding of this pivotal event.

The book includes forty black-and-white photos throughout the text.

Publisher: New York : Harper, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers, [2016]
Edition: First edition.
Copyright Date: ©2016
ISBN: 9780062405517
Branch Call Number: 940.5426693 Sum
Characteristics: 520 pages : illustrations, map ; 24 cm
Additional Contributors: Swan, Robbyn - Author
Alternative Title: Matter of honour


From the critics

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Apr 26, 2017

... that too much security can lead to obscurity ...

Apr 26, 2017

..., it was a final message "from this son of man to the son of God."

Apr 26, 2017

Death should be preferable to dishonor.

Apr 26, 2017

It is "like looking into hell on a sunshiny day."

Apr 26, 2017

... Britain's struggle with the Nazis is "a fight that will live forever in the story of human gallantry."


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Feb 08, 2017

Having been a WWII history junkie ever since discovering Samuel Eliot Morrison's fifteen or whatever volume official history of the US Navy in that war in my high school library 60+ years ago, Summers' and Swan's book provides solid evidence and plausible hypotheses connecting the dots in a way that explains why the Pacific Fleet command was so badly blind-sided on December 7, 1941. Admiral Kimmel truly was in the dark about the imminence of the threat to Hawaii, even though there was plenty of intelligence information available in Washington from which the dots could have been connected, and which to some extent had been. Why Kimmel and and his staff weren't sufficiently informed was due in considerable measure to bureaucratic friction and the imperative to maintain the secrecy of the MAGIC intercepts, but late in the book the authors hint there may have been more to it than that, something darker. But we'll almost certainly never know since it's unlikely any written record was kept. And yes, Admiral Kimmel definitely got screwed by being set up as the fall guy by the Roberts Commission's joke of an investigation. It may have been a war-time necessity, however, in order to protect the vital secret of MAGIC. Not to mention convenient for those in the War and Navy Departments in Washington, as well as the FBI, whose lassitude, marginal competence and in a few cases deeply flawed characters contributed to the clusterf**k.

I strongly recommend this book to anyone still interested in the history of that war.

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