First published in 1947, Pearl Harbor: The Story of the Secret War is widely regarded as the first Revisionist book about the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, and the complex history which preceded and followed it.
Although it drew both criticism and praise on its initial release, this book covers many aspects of that war, its antecedents and its consequences, and ranks among the best of the numerous volumes published on the subject.
“Those who object to historical skepticism may complain that my book is no contribution to the political canonization of its central figure. That is no concern of mine. As to the purpose my book is intended to serve, some observations from the minority report of the Joint Congressional Committee which investigated the Pearl Harbor attack are pertinent: ‘In the future the people and their Congress must know how close American diplomacy is moving to war so that they may check in advance if imprudent and support its position if sound ... How to avoid war and how to turn war -- if it finally comes -- to serve the cause of human progress is the challenge to diplomacy today as yesterday.’“—George Morgenstern
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About the Author
Mr. Morgenstern's career in journalism began early. Under his older brother, Bill, also a reporter, Mr. Morgenstern covered basketball and track while at Oak Park High School. In college he reported on football and other Big 10 sports for the now-defunct Herald-Examiner. He also was editor of the campus magazine, The Phoenix.
He interrupted his college career to go to work as a rewrite man for the Herald-Examiner, but continued his studies part-time. While at the Herald-Examiner he covered stories that included the Al Capone tax evasion trial.
He graduated with highest honors from the University of Chicago in 1930, where he was a member of the Alpha Delta Phi fraternity and Phi Beta Kappa.
In 1939, Mr. Morgenstern began working at The Tribune as a reporter and rewrite man, becoming an editorial writer in 1941. Except for his World War II service as a captain in the U.S. Marine Corps, where he directed the work of combat correspondents, he was an editorial writer specializing in foreign affairs. In 1969, he became editor of the editorial page.
In 1947, he published Pearl Harbor: The Story of the Secret War, a controversial revisionist history that blamed President Franklin Roosevelt for bringing the United States into World War II.
He received numerous awards, including The Tribune’s highest honor, the Edward Scott Beck Award, which he won twice (1956 and 1966) for his writing and editing of articles on the anniversary of Pearl Harbor.
He was married to the late Marcia Winn Morgenstern (1911-1961), who was also a Tribune writer, and had two daughters
After his retirement in 1971, Mr. Morgenstern continued to contribute occasional columns and editorials to the newspaper. He passed away in 1988 at the age of 82 and is buried at the Lake Forest Cemetery in Lake County, Illinois.