At Scott Horton’s suggestion, I wrote Robert Stinnett, author of Day of Deceit: The Truth about FDR and Pearl Harbor, and asked “about the new story [1,2] that the NSA has debunked the Pearl Harbor foreknowledge narrative.” His response is as follows:
I received your email which I believe you refer to the “Winds Code” story which I read in the New York Times on Sunday, December 7, 2008, based on a news release of the National Security Agency written by NSA “court historians.”
The story is NOT news. The “Winds Code” was introduced in the Congressional Investigation of 1945-46 in an attempt by Congress to divert attention from American success in solving the Japanese naval codes prior to Pearl Harbor. American newspapers and radio networks carried the story in November 1945.
The “winds code” was issued by the Japanese Foreign Office, not the Imperial Japanese Navy. The Foreign Office, certain the Allied nations would cut off communications, planned to use hidden word phrases in their world-wide news broadcasts aimed at Japanese Embassies and Consulates world-wide. Example “East wind Rain” in the weather report during the short wave news broadcast meant war with America; East wind North meant war with Russia. Ralph T. Briggs, a U.S. Naval intercept operator at Station “M”, Cheltenham, Maryland, intercepted the “Winds Code” broadcast on December 4, 1941, numbered the report and sent it to headquarters in Washington, D.C. The numbered report of Briggs is missing from U.S. Navy files.
While the Foreign Office report certainly revealed Japanese war intentions, the Japanese Navy also used a hidden war phrase: Niitaka Yama Nobore 1208, which translated meant “Climb Mt. Niitaka on December 8, 1941” (Tokyo time). This radio message originated by Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto, Commander in Chief of the Imperial Navy and was intercepted by Station “H” in Hawaii. Yamamoto transmitted the Niitaka message on December 2, 1941, in the hidden word phrase, according to testimony during the Congressional Investigation 1945-46. RADM Edwin Layton, who was Admiral Kimmel’s intelligence officer said the message was received in Hawaii in the hidden word system.
The Imperial Japanese Army also had a hidden word phrase. I have not seen the message, but it reportedly was “The Black Kite will fly on December 8, 1941.”
Best regards, Bob Stinnett.
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