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Home » Pearl Harbor, 9/11, and 1,347 Days

Pearl Harbor, 9/11, and 1,347 Days

It has now been 1,347 days since 9/11. That’s how many days there were between Pearl Harbor and V-J Day.

Think about it. Enough time to build an Army, Navy, and Air Force virtually from scratch. Enough time to fight the Battles of Midway and Iwo Jima. Enough time to invade Italy and Normandy. Enough time to defeat Mussolini, Tojo, and Hitler.

Enough time to conquer half the world and set it free.

So where do we stand by that same mile marker in the War on Terror?

Richard Larsen has an answwer in a guest column for the Washington Post. He’s a former Chairman of the Department of Military Strategy and Operations at the National War College . He’s currently the Director of the Institute for Homeland Security. Mr Larsen added up the number of days that’ve passed.

What It Adds Up To

In World War II, the US went all out to build the atom bomb before Germany or Japan did.

Today, Mr Larsen argues, the US has no protection from a terrorist launched nuclear or biological attack. He talks about the billions spent on defenses against a nuclear missile attack. Then points out:

“The last time the United States suffered a biological attack, the U.S. Postal Service provided the delivery vehicles, and we still don’t have a return address for the sender. A small truck, boat or private jet will most likely serve to smuggle a nuclear weapon across our 7,500 miles of borders or 95,000 miles of shoreline.”

The Sum Total

1,347 days after Pearl Harbor and Hitler and Mussolini were dead, Tojo was in the dock.

1,347 days after 9/11 we still don’t know where Osama bin Laden is.

1,347 days after Pearl Harbor the US had won the race to build the atomic bomb.

1,347 days after 9/11, we’ve done virtually nothing to guard against a terrorist atom bomb.

It’s been 1,347 days since this generation’s darkest day. And not that much has changed to make us safer from the potential for greater darkness.

About Terry Turner

  • RealCon

    The difference is that today most of us do not feel threatened. But during WWII most felt very threatened. There were thousands of deaths each and every day during WWII. Sometimes there were 100,000 deaths in one day.

  • http://www.templestark.com Temple Stark

    The reality is that though they may not feel it, Americans are more directly threatened today – and day to day – than they were in World War II.

    I’m tired of war comparisons. The 1940s are not the Double-oughts. The Vietnam War is not Iraq II.

    War is still Hell.

  • http://dumpsterbust.blogspot.com/ Eric Berlin

    I think it’s an interesting comparison to make, but not necessarily instructive in any way for the present.

    This data, for me, makes me marvel at what was accomplished from 1939-1945 (worldwide) in the face of grave threat and massive horrors.

  • http://www.911blogger.com dz

    a more interesting comparison is the discussion of prior knowledge and intentionally allowing the attack to occur to provide the motiviation and support for an expanded military and in going to war..

    that is the more common connection..

    if you missed David Ray Griffin discussing 9/11 on CSPAN a few weeks ago please check it out now:
    http://www.911blogger.com/2005/04/proper-release-of-griffin-in-madison.html

  • gonzo marx

    /golfclap

    very nicely done, thoughtful and concise..

    i will try and get to this a bit more after work…there are some good reasons to compare the two Events..and quite a few Reasons why you can’t compare them…

    but it does tend to lend a bit of scope and scale to what is going on

    it is also a MUCH more Important topic for discussion than..oh ..>looks to the right< most of the drivel on the board right now…

    more to come…

    Excelsior!

  • RealCon

    The Sum Total

    a. 1,347 days after Pearl Harbor and Hitler and Mussolini were dead, Tojo was in the dock.

    And Saddam is walking around in his underwear posing for pictures. Ha!

    b. 1,347 days after 9/11 we still don’t know where Osama bin Laden is.

    We know where he is — about 12,000 miles away — in a cave.

    c. 1,347 days after Pearl Harbor the US had won the race to build the atomic bomb.

    Of course the atomic bomb did not win the war. We had already won the war. In 1945 Japan was blockaded — Japan was left with inadequate materials and food to continue the war — and a few more thousand bombing raids by B-29’s, each with 20,000 pounds of incendiary bombs would have helped do it.

    d. 1,347 days after 9/11, we’ve done virtually nothing to guard against a terrorist atom
    bomb.

    Now this is a real problem — In Russia there are thousands of nuclear bombs and plenty of material to make more bombs — and we are chasing ghosts in Iraq. What Iraq has done is to convince the average person that our leaders don’t really believe there is a nuclear threat. All the average person hears about is the number of Iraqis blown up on a given day. Iraq is a distraction that works to keep the average person confused. Our politicians and their camp followers are focused only on telling us each day how much better things are going to be in Iraq when things get better in Iraq.

    e. It’s been 1,347 days since this generation’s darkest day. And not that much has changed to make us safer from the potential for greater darkness.

    The money we have spent in Iraq (and the spigot is still wide open) could have been spent doing something constructive to eliminate real threats. With the $500 billion or more that is being wasted in Iraq, we probably could have solved most of the real nuclear proliferation threats. But there’s no political capital or bombast for speeches and war cries in spending money in a covert way — regardless of the potential results..

  • gonzo marx

    RealCon sez..
    *We know where he is — about 12,000 miles away — in a cave.*

    umm..you know that as a Fact?…kewlio..could ya show me which cave..i could use the Reward money for laundering the greasy stain of his existance from the soiled underwear of Life…

    my point here being..some folks like spouting that tired line out…and crowing over capturing Saddam..

    but Saddam didn’t send planes to fly into our building, killing around 3000 of us….

    there were NO Iraqi’s flying those planes..

    but we got Saddam…and have NO fucking clue where OBL is….

    yet we have over 100,000 troops in Iraq, and less than 25000 in Afghanistan…

    we’ve spent how much Blood and Treasure in Iraq…with no end in sight…..yet we skimp in Afghanistan, which is now the #1 opium grower in the world…

    on and on

    excuse me fer a sec..i gotta go puke, again

    Excelsior!

  • SFC SKI

    Of course, in WWII we had a lot more people in uniform, al ot more allies, and a populace that was supportive of what was going on. In short, your post is a neat little “Fun Facts” but the points you draw are irrelvant.

  • RealCon

    Ahhh… Gonzo — just when I thought I saw something in you — No reward money for you!

    It doesn’t matter which cave Osama is in.., now does it? He’s not going anywhere soon.

    Keep in mind that we virtually invited his bomb squad into the country — we gave them flying lessons, drivers’ licenses, ignored the information we had on them… and on and on and on…

    If any country in the world gave someone else what we gave Osama… they could do at least as much damage in that country.

    I hope you got my point about Saddam and Iraq when you read my entire post. If not — read it again…

    And regarding the poppy fields — the flowers are very pretty — and their byproduct helps our underground economy…

  • sydney

    I agree the points are irrelevant.

    In WWII we had a tangible goal, a tangible enemy. We fought them with bullets and killed them. When we killed them, they were gone for good.

    In the modern scenario we have an intangible enemy, one who can’t be fought with bullets. Trying to defend a country against terrorism by using armed soldiers, obviously doesn’t work.

    So why the slow progress? Because no one can agree on how to go about lowering the risk of an attack.

    Personally, I think it takes words, not a military, or perhaps a combination of both. But basically, hunting down terrorists, accomplishes nothing because in that act you serve to create 2 more where the first one was killed.

    We need to forge an understanding between the two cultures, use acts of good will and charity to win the hearts of the terrorists and their people. No person in good conscience is going to lash out at a country that has tried its best to show love and understanding. On the other hand, it must be very easy to convince the young people of Iraq (many of who will have had their whole families killed by American attacks) that Terrorism is a just and noble mission.

    So, why do we compare WWII to 9/11. They are incomparable.

    The real question is, why are we in IRAQ fighting a war there, one that seems to be creating more terrorists than its getting rid of?

  • RealCon

    Why are we in IRAQ fighting a war there, one that seems to be creating more terrorists than its getting rid of?

    Because we have idiots leading the country — they are called neo-cons and they have hi-jacked the White House and the Pentagon.

  • RealCon

    Yes – Trying to defend a country against terrorism by using armed soldiers, obviously doesn’t work. It doesn’t work because “terrorism” is a tactic — not a tanguble enemy.

    Two points for Sydney… go work on the next one now.

  • http://www.templestark.com Temple Stark

    OT: Just a point of interest and not relevant to above discussion – the Color Alert “terror warning” system from DHS was voted out of existence by Congress – yesterday I think.

    It was a good idea, though. Riiiiiiiiight. LOL

  • sydney

    ya what did orange mean? yellow? was there a green on there somewhere?

    I felt terrified when it changed colours…. or was i releived. I forget.