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Japan, United States
December 7, 1941
Oahu, Territory of Hawaii, U.S.
Pearl Harbor attack was a surprise aerial attack by the Imperial Japanese Navy Air Service on the U.S. naval base at Pearl Harbor on Sunday, December 7, 1941. The attack led to the United States' formal entry into World War II. The day after, Congress declared war on Japan.
Japan and the United States had been edging toward war for decades. In the late 1930s, America supported China, and aggression against China by Japan brought Japan into conflict with the United States. In 1940, the U.S. began to restrict the export to Japan of materials useful in war
On December 7, at about 8 a.m., Japanese planes filled the sky over Pearl Harbor, after months of planning and practice. In total, more than 180 American aircraft were destroyed. The battleship USS Arizona blew up with a tremendous explosion. Less than two hours later, the surprise attack was over, and every battleship in Pearl Harbor had sustained significant damage. American military casualties totaled more than 3,400.
The day after the attack, Roosevelt called for a formal declaration of war on the Empire of Japan. Its most significant consequence was the entrance of the United States into World War II. The attack was an initial shock to all the Allies in the Pacific Theater.
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