Today is 07 December the day in 1941 when the forces of the empire of Japan attacked our naval fleet anchored in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii…..a day we remember….the day our Greatest Generation went to war.
Too many people know the day but not the situation…..and the old professor is here to help…..too many blow the day off and that is just wrong…….
First some myths about Pearl Harbor…..https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/five-myths-about-pearl-harbor/2011/11/23/gIQAbdKrLO_story.html
Why did Japan do it? Doing nothing is a viable strategic option, and oftentimes a good one. Imperial Japan would have been far better off had it forgone the attack on Pearl Harbor and confined its operations to the Western Pacific. Had Tokyo exercised some forbearance, it may have avoided rousing the “sleeping giant” that Adm. Isoroku Yamamoto reputedly said he feared so much. And even if it did awaken the American giant, it would have avoided filling him with what Yamamoto called a “terrible resolve” to crush Japan. Think about it:
Japan was clever to come up with this tactic, right?
Well not really they got the idea from the Brits…….
Through the dark skies came waves of aircraft lumbering under the weight of the torpedoes they carried. The date was November 11, 1940, the place was the southern Italian port of Taranto, and the battle that ensued that night was the prelude to the Japanese raid at Pearl Harbor .
In the fall of 1940, Britain was in trouble. France had fallen, Nazi Germany ruled Western Europe, and the British Empire stood alone. To make matters worse, Mussolini’s Italy had entered the war. Though weaker than Germany or Japan, Italy had a priceless advantage: it was situated in the middle of the Mediterranean, athwart the sea routes to the Suez Canal and the vital island of Malta, which the British needed to supply as a thorn in Axis supply routes to North Africa. To avoid Italian naval and air forces, British convoys would have to forgo the direct route into the Mediterranean through the Straits of Gibraltar, and sail all the way around Africa to come up through the Suez Canal.
More history for my reader…..1941 was not the first attack on Pearl…..yep it was attacked 9 years earlier……
No American military engagement has undergone more post-mortems than the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Between 1941 and 1946, various departments of the U.S. government conducted nine official inquiries. A tenth inquiry was held as recently as 1995, when the Department of Defense re-examined the culpability placed on Rear Admiral Husband E. Kimmel and Major General Walter C. Short for a lack of preparedness prior to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. The investigation, issued as the Dorn Report, absolved Kimmel and Short of responsibility for the devastation caused by the attack and recommended posthumously restoring Kimmel and Short to the ranks they held prior to the attack.
There are other facts that are not as well known as the actual attack….and I can fill in the blanks for my readers……
The deadly surprise attack on the US Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor, launched without a declaration of war, made 7 December 1941 “a date which will live in infamy”, declared President Franklin D Roosevelt. Early that Sunday morning, hundreds of Japanese planes sank or damaged 21 warships and destroyed more than 150 planes on nearby airfields; more than 2,000 Americans lost their lives.
Finally a perspective from someone who was actually on the ground in Pearl for the attack……
About 7:45 a.m., through the crackle and buzz of interference, gunnery and anti-aircraft officer Benny Mott was jolted by pilots’ voices rising with alarm over the radio transmitter aboard the USSEnterprise. They were shouting to one another.
“Hey, did you see that army plane shooting at me?”
“That’s no army plane! That’s a Japanese plane! Look at the red circles on his wings!”
Where World War One made the world we know today……World War Two solidified America’s world leadership.
If you are going to Remember Pearl Harbor then know all the history not just the nit-picked stuff!