December 7, 1941 a “day that will live in infamy” as dubbed by President FDR. “Remember Pearl Harbor” became a rallying cry for soldiers, sailors and civilians alike. The attack led to a declaration of war by the US President on December 8, 1941 which caused Germany and Italy (European Axis Powers) to declare war on the United States the next day. FDR sued congress for a declaration of war on Germany and Italy and war was so declared on December 11.
The British Empire already at war with Germany, and Japan, the Germans having attacked Russia on June 22, 1941, thanks to the Japanese the entire world was now embroiled in the conflict dubbed World War II.
The attack on Pearl Harbor missed the primary Japanese objective in their hope for the sinking or destruction of the US Aircraft Carriers. None of the carriers were in Pearl Harbor that day. There were, however, eight US battleships docked in battleship row that day.
Once the attack began at 7:55 on Sunday morning the USS Nevada made for the harbor entrance. The Nevada was severely crippled in the attempt to gain the open sea and was intentionally beached temporarily crippled. The USS Arizona exploded when a bomb struck the forward powder magazine. 1,100 sailors were killed on the Arizona that day.
The USS Oklahoma was torpedoed, listed and capsized. Neither the Arizona, nor the Oklahoma would ever see action again.
The other six battleships, USS Nevada, USS California, USS Tennessee, USS Maryland, USS West Virginia, and the USS Pennsylvania in dry dock. All of these ships were sunk or severely damaged that day.
There were 2,335 US Sailors and soldiers killed on December 7, 1941 in the Japanese surprise attack. Additionally there were 1,143 wounded service men and women. Sixty eight civilians were also killed and 35 civilians were injured.
Six months later a recovered US Navy engaged the Japanese fleet at Midway dealing the Japanese the first decisive defeat successfully sinking Four Japanese Aircraft Carriers there.
That war destroyed much of the world and killed millions across the globe. It was of course ended with the two nuclear strikes at Hiroshima and Nagasaki. General Douglas MacArthur accepted Japan’s surrender on the deck of the US Missouri in 1945.