7th December 2021 marks the 80th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor that brought the United States of America into the Second World War.
On the morning of 7th December 1941, just before 8am the Japanese launched their attack on the US naval base of Pearl Harbor in Honolulu, Hawaii.
The Japanese planned the attack as a first strike to cripple the US fleet in the Pacific and prevent America from intervening in other Japanese Pacific Operations. From six Imperial Japanese Aircraft carriers, over 350 planes flew in two waves attacked the American base. Eight US Navy battleships would be damaged, four sunk, along with other cruisers and destroyers. Crucially, one element of the US Pacific fleet escaped the preemptive strike. The American Aircraft Carriers were all absent from Pearl Harbor on the day of the attack.
Roosevelt would proclaim the 7th December 1941 as a ‘date that would live in infamy’.
Joining me to discuss the attack on Pearl Harbor is Mark Stille.
Mark is a naval historian who is prolific in his studies on the naval war in the Pacific. He has written Tora! Tora! Tora!: Pearl Harbor 1941 for Osprey and has two new books out looking at the whole of the US Naval Campaign in the Pacific The United States Navy in WWII: From Pearl Harbor to Okinawa and Pacific Carrier War: Carrier Combat from Pearl Harbor to Okinawa.