This Is An Essay Based Around The Prompt "What Steps Would You Have Taken Differently To Prevent Pearl Harbor?"

927 words - 4 pages

On the morning of Sunday, December 7th, 1941, thousands of American soldiers and civilians were killed in a surprise aerial attack by the Japanese in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. Although the attack on Pearl Harbor was a devastating day for America, and the initiation of US involvement in World War II, it is a day to remember not only for those who died but for the lessons to be learned to help prevent any such event from happening again. I would have advised the government and military officials to honor all respects of a neutrality, recognize and act on the signals they receive, and better coordinate communications between the military and government. If these matters would have been taken, an attack on Pearl Harbor would not have been made on an unprepared naval harbor, or, due to Japanese espionage in Hawaii, might not have happened at all.President Roosevelt declared American neutrality when war in Europe first broke out, yet some of his actions can be argued as not so neutral, due to economic and diplomatic concerns in Japan and Germany. For example, when Germany placed a blockade on British waters, many British ships with American occupants were sunk, and Roosevelt responded with several threats of war. Germany eventually fully respected American naval neutrality, but Roosevelt's threat to enter into war was indeed a step away from American neutrality and the first sign of American readiness to enter into war. Another example came after Japanese alliance with Germany in World War II and complete Japanese occupancy of Indochina in 1941. These actions surprised US officials, who had strong economic ties to China and had long been applying diplomatic pressure on Japan to not invade China. In response to Japanese occupancy, Roosevelt, along with Great Britain and the Netherlands, completely cut off all trade with Japan, which "subjected her to almost complete economic encirclement" in July, 1941 (document 2). Such actions on a country involved with the Axis Alliance was one more step away from American neutrality. The final and possibly largest steps away from American neutrality came with an American alliance with Britain which promised war with Japan should either country, or any other neutral country, be attacked by Japan. Such an alliance with a country involved with the war put an obvious sign of American preparation and readiness for war. The cancellation of the Washington Conference and the note of November 26, 1941, which gave Japan an ultimatum of surrender or war, was the final signal that America no longer meant to stay neutral in World War II. If America had continued to keep out of foreign affairs, America would never have been attacked and brought into the war. But American diplomatic concerns forced an involvement in Japan, which...

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