Pearl Harbor Attack and America’s Retaliation
Not many countries have the courage to attack the United States on its own soil but there was one country in the heat of World War II that caused chaos in our very own backyard. Despite disputes on foreign policy and tension with Japan from World War I, the United States did everything to stay neutral Japan had other plans unfortunately. On December 7, 1941, Japan took the south side of the Hawaiian Island, Oahu by surprise by attacking the US Naval Base on Pearl Harbor. The day started as a calm, peaceful Sunday morning. The citizens of Oahu and service men of Naval Station Pearl Harbor were going about their business. Meanwhile, Vice Admiral Chuichi Nagumo had stationed his fleet about 230 miles away from Oahu. Around 6 a.m., Japanese forces launched the first of two waves which consisted of about 181 planes. Each wave of planes of planes were sent about 45 minutes apart. These planes were a combination of torpedo bombers, horizontal bombers, dive bombers and fighter planes. Along with the planes, they sent midget submarines to help sink the targeted ships. U.S. navy vessels spotted and attacked a midget submarine. At approximately7:55 a.m. Japanese Commander Mitsuo Fuchida yelled out, “Tora! Tora! Tora!” meaning (Tiger! Tiger! Tiger) relaying to the entire Japanese navy that the Americans had no idea what was going on! The attacks had begun and “Operation Z” was now under way.
There were more than 90 ships anchored in Pearl Harbor. Out of theses 90 ships, Japan’s main targets were the aircraft carriers stationed at the base. Unfortunately for Japan the carrier ships were out to sea, so they targeted eight battle ships that were defenseless. Theses battle ships, seven of them, were part of the U.S Pacific fleet. All were present in “Battleship Row” except the Colorado.
Battleship Nevada left its place in row and attempted to make it to the harbors entrance but was attacked repeatedly. The decision was...
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