What Was Pearl Harbor? (What Was?)

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For nearly two weeks prior to the attack, Japanese battleships and destroyers had escorted 43 fighters, 51 dive-bombers, 49 high-level bombers, and 40 torpedo planes from six carriers that floated miles north of Pearl Harbor. The aircraft had traveled in complete radio silence in order to catch the Americans by surprise. In another hour, a second fleet of additional Japanese aircraft bombarded the site. American residents who watched the attack from afar observed in horror as the screams of men on the sunken battleships ripped through the air, smoke rose from the sea, and the injured and dead swam in bloody waters slick with burning oil.


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When the effects of the attack subsided, the grim casualties became known: 2, American civilians and military personnel had been killed, and 1, wounded. Two battleships and aircraft were destroyed.

Attack on Pearl Harbor - 1941

The attack caught American military personnel by surprise and was certainly costly, but it did not cripple the U. Navy as the Japanese had anticipated. By a stroke of luck, the three American aircraft carriers stationed at Pearl Harbor were not there on the morning of December 7th. Aircraft carriers are larger and more difficult to build than other ships, and their survival would prove vital during the Pacific War.

Pearl Harbor Story: Interview with Pearl Harbor Eyewitnesses

Three days later, Germany and Italy declared war on the United States. The War Department completely reorganized itself, as key positions shifted to various trusted officers in order to prepare for the new conflict. Prior to Pearl Harbor, the United States had sent large amounts of financial aid and military equipment to the Allied cause. The Japanese attack launched the U. Pearl Harbor also had a marked effect on the Manhattan Project.

The S-1 Committee , which ran atomic research prior to the creation of the Manhattan Project, formally held its first meeting on December 18, This meeting initiated an official shift from the research to the development phase of the project. Their tactics were brutal and many more Americans lost their lives. The attack at Pearl Harbor as well as the Bataan Death March have often been cited as justification for the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

They have been repaid many fold. Today, a memorial exists at Pearl Harbor to honor those who lost their lives that day. This is the solemn vow we, the people of Japan, have taken.

Pearl Harbor, December 7, 1941

A Japanese Mitsubishi A6M2 "Zero" fighter airplane of the second wave takes off from the aircraft carrier Akagi on the morning of December 7, March 28, Pearl Harbor Historic Sites. Holidays, observances, and celebrations in the United States. Day federal. Super Bowl Sunday. Mardi Gras. Patrick's Day religious Spring break week. Easter religious. Father's Day Independence Day federal. Summer vacation.

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