Japanese Bomb Pearl Harbor
By Sue Schuurman
DECEMBER 14, 1998:
On Dec. 7, 1941, Japanese forces attacked U.S. bases in Hawaii while simultaneously conducting diplomatic negotiations in Washington. It was this event--not the genocide occurring in Europe--that spurred the United States to finally enter World War II. From bringing the country out of the Great Depression to forming a heroic national consciousness to setting the stage for the subsequent Cold War, perhaps no other single event had more influence on the American 20th century.
Text of Roosevelt Message
"The text of President Roosevelt's war message to Congress and the war declaration of Congress follow:
"To the Congress of the United States: Yesterday, Dec. 7, 1941--a date which will live in infamy--the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the empire of Japan. ...Yesterday the Japanese government also launched an attack against Malaya. Last night Japanese forces attacked Hongkong. Last night Japanese forces attacked Guam. Last night Japanese forces attacked Philippine Islands. Last night the Japanese attacked Midway Islands. Japan has, therefore, undertaken a surprise offensive extending throughout the Pacific area. The facts of yesterday speak for themselves. The people of the United States have already formed their opinions and well understand the implications to the very life and safety of our nation. ... No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might will win through to absolute victory. ... "
Albuquerque Journal Editorial: United States at War
"The United States is at war. Japan's surprise attacks on our bases in the Pacific and her declaration of war that followed has been answered by a war declaration by the United States and our armed forces are springing to the challenge. ... War to the United States means more than the employment of our armed forces in whatever fields become necessary. It means sweeping changes in the United States affecting the daily lives of everyone. It means that war industry must be put on a 24-hour production basis; that there must be no more conflicts between labor and industry; that civilians must co-operate 100 per cent in every effort to gear our machinery to victory. ... But there must also be the will to win regardless of sacrifices. Comforts and privileges that we have enjoyed will have to be adjusted; selfishness abandoned. We have not understood yet what sacrifice means. But we have been abruptly awakened and will answer the call. ... The job is one that requires a united front that will demonstrate the character of the nation--that we love America as much as we profess to, and that we will go 'all out' to maintain the principles of democracy and our American way of life against any and all foes. ... "
--compiled by Susan Schuurman
Source: Albuquerque Journal;
Dec. 8 & 9, 1941
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