MacArthur’s Pacific Appeasement, December 8, 1941: The Missing Ten Hours

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Trafford Publishing, Nov 21, 2012 - History - 294 pages
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As planned, military action in the U. S. Commonwealth of the Philippine Isles would be in consonance with the 1935 U. S. WAR PLAN ORANGE, Revision 3 (WPO-3). When war threatened in the Pacific theater, WPO-3 was amended in 1941 as a result of the Placentia Bay, Argentia, Newfoundland meeting between United States President Franklin Roosevelt and Great Britain Prime Minister Winston Churchill, and their respective War Staffs. This revision, renamed RAINBOW 5, included military and naval forces of Australia, Great Britain, The Netherlands (Dutch), and the United States (America) (ABDA) in a mutual defense pact. War Plan Rainbow 5 provided detailed, precise instructions the U.S. Army and U.S. Navy in the Pacific Theater would execute in the event of hostilities with Japan. If it appeared hostilities were imminent, the President of the United States, Commander-in-Chief of all U. S. military and naval forces, would order execution of Phase One, RAINBOW 5. Phase One explicitly ordered the U.S. Army Air Force (FEAF), headquartered at Nielson Field, Manila, subordinate to the U.S. Army Far East Command (USAFFE), The Philippines, to send one Boeing B-17D Flying Fortress on a high altitude photo-reconnaissance mission over Japanese military targets in and around the island of Formosa. At the same time, the U.S. Navy Asiatic Fleet, except submarines, gunboats, PT boats, harbor vessels, and shore command, would depart for agreed upon ports in Java, Borneo, Celebes, and Singapore. (The U.S. Army Air Force was created on June 20, 1941, but elements of the U.S. Army Air Corps remained intact until 1947 when both USAAF and USAAC were abolished and the U.S. Air Force (USAF) was born. I decided to use USAAF throughout this book.)

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