This week, we remember the devastating and unprovoked attack on the Pearl Harbor Naval Base by the Imperial Navy of Japan, an event which would provoke the United States to enter World War II. The battle lasted just 90 minutes and killed 2,403 Americans, injuring 1,178 more. The Japanese destroyed 18 ships, including five battleships, leading President Franklin D. Roosevelt to name Dec. 7 as “a date which will live in infamy.”
Nearly half of the U.S. dead (1,177) were from the U.S.S. Arizona when the forward munitions magazine exploded.
Because the attack took place without an explicit warning or declaration of war by the Japanese, all the dead or injured were judged to be non-combatants and the attack was ruled a war crime during the Tokyo Trials.