A date which will live in infamy, according to President Franklin Roosevelt has changed December 7, 1941from any ordinary day to the day that the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor and reluctantly drew the United States into World War II. Until that attack, the United States was sending reinforcements and supplies to Britain to help with their defense against the German advancing lines. The allies consisted of Britain, USSR, and United States, but the axis consisted of Germany, Italy, and Japan.
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Japan perceiving Germany had advanced their fronts through Belgium, the Netherlands and into France; but Japan was also irate at the United States for implementing the embargo. The United States suspected Japan’s intentions but did not foresee the Japanese plan. Pearl Harbor could not have been prevented due to failure of diplomacy, the American embargo, and the Japanese intransigence with regard to occupation of Manchuria.
But like previous efforts, these negotiations collapsed on the rock of irreconcilable interests. Japan would not totally retreat from the Asian mainland and return to a pinched and poverty-stricken existence in its overpopulated islands. According to the article Pearl Harbor The First Energy War, it stated that The United States could not accept to a compromise that left Japan in possession of any part of China. However, a three months moratorium, a modus vivendi, leaving all forces in place, was left on the table. But on November 26th, after Japan took more locations in Indo-China (Vietnam), Secretary Hull shocked the Japanese envoys with an abrupt change to earlier demands, including complete Japanese withdrawal from all of China. This was known as The Ten-Point Proposal.
Throughout these events, the President and close advisers – the secretaries of State, War and Navy, and the Chief of Staff of the Army and Chief of Naval Operations – had been observing every update of Japanese policy through signals intelligence. American cryptographers had broken the Japanese diplomatic code, and thereafter, these decoded messages to Japan’s overseas posts, styled MAGIC, were on Secretary Hull’s desk within a few hours of receipt and translation. As such, the President and his advisors knew of Japan’s intention to take drastic measures if negotiations fell through. The Japanese military codes were still un-deciphered, but troop movements implied an invasion of Malaysia, the Dutch East Indies, and perhaps the Philippines on the weekends of December 1st and 7th. However, there were no signs of an attack on the United States.
The American military had received word about the Japanese on the early afternoon of Pearl Harbor with a warning, but they ignored it.
it reached General Short right away, who in turn sent a copy to Admiral Kimmel. It was a cable from General Marshall in Washington, filed at the Army Signal Center at 12:01 (6:31 A.M.,
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