Infamy Pearl Harbor

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A Day of Infamy The Intelligence Failures of both Japan and the United States In the Pearl Harbour Attack of 1941 It is a valid question to ask how such a catastrophic attack like Pearl Harbour could occur as a surprise to the United States. The U.S. Navy was located on the island of Oahu, Hawaii along with the headquarters of the Pacific Fleet, which Pearl Harbour housed. On December 7, 1941, 2,403 were killed and some 1,178 were wounded after the attack. The Navy and Army collectively lost seventy-two fighters, thirty-nine bombers and forty-six patrol planes in the air. On top of that, eighteen warships, five battleships and nine other light cruisers, destroyers and auxiliary crafts are also destroyed. In light of these facts, it is…show more content…
To orchestrate an attack of that caliber, a commanding officer should have been fully adept and enthralled with the situation at hand. In the case of the Japanese military attack on Pearl Harbour, that did not happen. Yamamoto, who was the architect of the Pearl Harbour offensive, did not go to and lead the actual attack. After the planning was complete, he directed his commanders prior to departure and sent Vice-Admiral Chuichi Nagumo in his place. Nagumo was not particularly thrilled about the idea of attacking Pearl Harbour, especially considering his inexperience with airborne operations.Nonetheless, he was put in command of the First Air Fleet. This was a failure in two ways; the war coordinator did not go to war and an inexperienced, hesitant, substitute took his place. It is noted that Nagumo conceivably withdrew from the attack too early, or earlier than Yamamoto would have. There were still carriers that had not been hit and America had not been immobilized enough to stop a counter attack. Yamamoto’s leniency in giving Nagumo authority to make crucial decisions was not a good idea. Had Yamamoto headed the actual attack instead of Nagumo, a possible third wave strike could have been unleashed to destroy all missed targets, thus changing the position of the U.S. military to ‘crippled’ after Pearl Harbour. However, Nagumo and the fleet arrived back on Japanese soil after the attack and instead of an expected applause and praise from Yamamoto, he received the opposite as the Americans were not defeated. Yamamoto knew that Japan needed to be in a position of strength in order to negotiate with America and have the upper hand. Nagumo managed to withdraw from Pearl Harbour before securing a complete victory that was so close to his grasp. It was now that Japan should have begun to prepare for the repercussions of the failure to wipe out their key targets in
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