The Storm Breaks in the East: The Rise of Imperial Japan
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The Storm Breaks in the East: The Rise of Imperial Japan Make bright the arrows Gather the shields: Conquest narrows The peaceful fields. Stock well the quiver With arrows bright: The bowman feared Need never fight. Make bright the arrows, O peaceful and wise!

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The Storm Breaks in the East: The Rise of Imperial Japan

Make bright the arrows

Gather the shields:

Conquest narrows

The peaceful fields.

Stock well the quiver

With arrows bright:

The bowman feared

Need never fight.

Make bright the arrows,

O peaceful and wise!

Gather the shields

Against surprise.

-- Edna St. Vincent Millay


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Japanese Expansion in Asia and the Pacific

I. Japan Invades Manchuria

(China), 1931

A. Japan Builds up Forces in

Manchuria

1. Japan Attacks Again, 1937

2. Rape of Nanking

II. America's Actions in Asia

A. Assistance to China

1. Financial Assistance

2. Mercenaries & Civilian Vols.

    a. Flying Tigers

B. Economic Sanctions

Against Japan

"Ten Thousand Corpse Ditch", where bodies of mass execution victims of Nanking were buried.


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III.  Japan's Search for a New Sources of Oil and U.S. Retaliation

  • September 1940: Tripartite Pact

  • Japanese Attack at Pearl Harbor,

  • December 7, 1941

  • C. U.S. Enters WWII

Aboard a Japanese carrier before the attack on Pearl Harbor (above); U.S.S. Arizona burning (right)


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Pearl Harbor Details Retaliation

Between 7:55 am and 9:45 am, 7 December 1941

  • Japanese plan involved 6 heavy aircraft carriers with 24 supporting vessels, and separate group of submarines. 260 Japanese planes participated in the attack (181 planes in first wave launched at 6am; 170 planes in second wave launched at 6:30 am); Japanese lost 29 planes, 4 midget subs, and less than 100 casualties (<10% of attacking force)

  • US ships: of 8 battleships present, 3 sank, 1 capsized, 4 seriously damaged; additional ships sunk or seriously damaged: 3 light cruisers, 3 destroyers, + numerous smaller vessels (Total: 21 ships sunk or damaged)

  • US Aircraft: 188 planes destroyed, 159 planes damaged (most hit on ground)

  • US Casualties: 2,403 dead or dying, most sailors, but also soldiers and marines, as well as civilians; 1,178 military and civilian wounded


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  • Recommended Reading Retaliation

  • Best quicksources for information (in addition to Currents in American History, Chap 11)

    • “Pearl Harbor: Who Blundered?” Col. T. R. Dupuy, American Heritage 13 (Feb. 1862) http://www.americanheritage.com/articles/magazine/ah/1962/2/1962_2_64.shtml

    • “The Pearl Harbor Attack, 7 December 1941” Created by the U.S. Naval Historical Center (site includes oral histories and lesson plans) at http://www.history.navy.mil/faqs/faq66-1.htm

    • “National Museum of the Pacific War” at http://www.nimitz-museum.org/ also includes oral histories and lesson plans at

    • http://www.nimitz-museum.org/education/teks_orient.htm

    • For more lengthy, excellent studies see:

    • At Dawn We Slept and December 7, 1941 by Donald M Goldstein, Gordon W Prange, Katherine V Dillon; see also Katherine Dillon again for God’s Samurai: Lead Pilot at Pearl Harbor or read his own explanation about the Pearl Harbor attack in Mitsuo Fuchida’s essay “The Air Attack on Pearl Harbor” in The Japanese Navy in World War II: In the Words of Former Japanese Naval Officers. For an excellent overview of the American experiences in WWII in the Pacific, see Ronald Spector, Eagle Against the Sun or any of the wonderful volumes in Samuel Eliot Morison’s classic study, History of United States Naval Operations in World War II15 Volumes.


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