The 80th Anniversary of “A Day That Will Live in Infamy” Slipped Right Past Me
Okay, granted I was only six years old at the time, but I remember the Japanese sneak attack on Pearl Harbor that destroyed 80% of our Pacific Fleet. Franklin Roosevelt used that phrase in a speech to Congress and the American people.
The gravity of the moment was largely lost over the decades because we won in the long run, but that outcome was very much at risk in December of 1941. Although military officers still wore well-shined riding boots (including spurs), the technology of war had seen immense change.
Having wearied our way through to the conclusion of World War One, a trench-war fought and won largely on horse power a mere 23 years hence, who would have envisioned a mass air-attack from aircraft carriers or conceived of the submarine warfare already underway in Europe. Hitler’s blitzkrieg tank warfare, supported by airstrikes was rolling across the European continent.
Germany immediately declared war and the race was on.
So far as I can tell, WWII and the War of 1812 were the on…