Hi guys! The WW2 magazine article is out, and I received my copies the other day. The problem is that WW2 made a dozen or so editorial changes that (1) made something incorrect in the article, or (2) removed it entirely. For example, the editor changed "United States Naval Institute Proceedings" to "U.S. Navy Proceedings." Picky perhaps, but I prefer accuracy. They also changed things to say that USS Curtiss and Monaghan ordered USS Case to drop a depth charge on Midget B that evening, which is also wrong. Case did drop the depth charge, but Curtiss and Monaghan had nothing to do with her orders to do it.
The editor left most of the article alone though, so I am not going to yelp too loud!
I'll get the deleted stuff together and put it on here if anyone is interested in this photo. It's more interesting for what can be seen in the photo than the fairy tales created by people like Burl Burlingame and the "Autometric Team." I've put a few posts in the midget submarine section already concerning this photo and their imaginary submarine, along with a close-up of the photo showing what it really is.
It's somewhat humorous but Burl Burlingame cites the Autometric fantasy in one of the websites promoting his book. He says that government investigators confirmed one of his radical theories, that there was a second midget submarine and it was photographed (i.e., the famous photo). His book is so filled with errors that he has to resort to creative fiction like that to promote it. Here are links to his site, if you'd like to read what he himself wrote (in the third person) about his books.
Unfortunately, the current rumor is that the Naval Institute has lowered their standards to the point where they are going to reprint his book. If that is true you can expect a new round of rumor concerning the submarines!
I didn't bother responding to Autometric's latest fantasy (Proceedings magazine, Dec 2000) because some things are just not worth the ink.
For example, they make a big deal about "new information" from Japan, then all they write about are the well-known release times and locations. These guys are such poor scholars they use the names from the 1967 hoax article in "Our Navy" magazine even though the actual names of the midget submarine crewmen have been known since 1942.
Also, they make a big fuss over the mysterious "electric light barrier" based on an interview Dan Martinez conducted with an unnamed veteran. The problem is that Martinez didn't check the guy's story, and neither did Autometric. It's nothing but a war story, changed over the years.
If anyone had bothered to look it up (Hewitt Inquiry, Exhibits 74 and 75) they'd have known that the electric indicator lights were installed on December 27, 1941, as a result of the Pearl Harbor attack. There was nothing in place prior to that, and there is no real mystery about this except why these people are allowed to write history.
Of course, looking in the archives at other 14ND documents would help them tremendously, but none of them have ever allowed research to get in the way of a story!
Remember, your tax dollars are going to the Boeing-Autometric people for defense-related photographic interpretation. I suppose they deserve it being the "experts" they are, but one does have to wonder about their abilities if this photo and series of articles are examples of their work.
People can make a good living passing rumor and unresearched speculation off as history, and this photo will hopefully remind us all to check and double check everything. I know I just have to look at it when I get cocky and it brings me back to earth!
By the way, I have e-mailed Dan Martinez asking for the name of the man he interviewed, but I suspect my e-mail was lost in the shuffle someplace. I'd be willing to bet Dan receives a load of e-mail each day. If anyone sees him at Pearl you might ask him for the name of the unnamed sailor, mostly because I hate leaving loose ends dangling like that.
(Edited by Ken Hackler at 12:44 pm on April 27, 2001)