Sunday, December 7, 2008

A Date Which Will Live In Infamy

On December 7, 1941 the Empire of Japan attacked the United States of America at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt spoke before the United States Congress and to the nation on December 8th. Within minutes, Congress declared war on Japan, bringing the United States directly into World War II.

Here in the United States we have Memorial Day and Veterans Day, yet December 7th is inextricably linked to World War II. Not simply the attack and our active involvement in the war, but December 7th has become emblematic of the entirety of the wartime experience. Hard on the heels of The Great Depression, the attack on Pearl Harbor roused the United States from its isolationist complacency and rallied it to pull together. The overwhelming cooperation of and enormous sacrifices made by what has come to be called “The Greatest Generation”, both on the battlefields and on the home front, continue to inspire. I have no doubt, they always will.

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