Impact of Attack on Pearl Harbor

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Throughout many times in history, nations have been challenged with the difficult decision of whether to engage in war with a foreign nation. Not only do these decisions affect the current citizens of the country, but they effect the future generations to come. It is not an easy decision to make. Many nations are often unsure and the decision is usually made too late. This often results in the expense of thousands of lives, shown through the devastation of Pearl Harbor. The United States entering the war prior to Pearl Harbor would have made Japan’s attack more difficult and weakened Japan’s opportunity to expand its empire.

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Currently, the United States sees itself as a worldly powerhouse. The United States possess a strong economy, dominant democracy, and a powerful military. Despite having all of these great assests, the United States could have easily lost them, by avoiding the entrance of World War II any longer. The attacks on Pearl Harbor did result in the killing of thousands of people, but it did not destroy a large enough portion of the U.S. naval fleet to stifle the country. The rise and spread of dictator ships now had a direct threat on the United States. However, the United States could have completely avoided this situation by getting involved in the war earlier. If the United States had entered the war earlier, the troops would have already been positioned appropriately. Therefore, the military would not have been as caught off guard by the attacks at Pearl Harbor. Not only would a majority of the forces be deployed, but also the country would have already been adjusting itself to support the war effort at home and abroad. Factories would have been booming- creating weapons and ships at a faster rate. Japan would have had to approach their idea of attacking the United States a different way, because in this scenario the United States would have been more prepared for an attack. Due to the fact that the United States government was reluctant to enter World War II prior to Pearl Harbor, the military were unexpectedly attacked and put at a great disadvantage.

A result of the United States already being involved in the war prior to Pearl Harbor, the Japanese would not have had the momentum they did from the attacks, to fuel Japan’s dominance. The United States would have been in a stronger position to act as more of a force against Japan, thus possibly putting a halt to Japan’s dominance. Even if the United States were unable to put an immediate halt to the Japanese at Pearl Harbor, the U.S. military would have been ready to engage in war, rather than having to waste time preparing itself while Japan took over a majority of the Pacific islands. Not only would the military have had more of an advantage in the Pacific arena, but a decision would have not only saved some if not all of the 2,403 men and women who died during the Pearl Harbor attack, and the thousands of Pacific islanders who died during Japan’s expansion. Pearl Harbor could have been avoided if the United States entered the war before the attacks. This would have also prevented Japan’s pacific expansion.

The United States is a force to be reckoned with on many levels. However, Japan’s attacks at Pearl Harbor caught the United States off guard and not prepared. Entering World War II prior to the attacks at Pearl Harbor would have resulted in the U.S. army being better prepared. They would have been positioned in place, instead of the attacks on its homeland resulting its efforts being too late. The United States would have already been increasing war production to support the war effort, rather than having to rush production to try to catch up. Finally, the United States forces being mobilized would have resulted in the forces posing more of an immediate threat towards Japan’s efforts. The event of the attacks at Pearl Harbor should be used as a vehicle to discourage reluctance to act.

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Impact of Attack on Pearl Harbor. (2019, Jun 24). Retrieved February 7, 2023 , from

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