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Why did the Japanese attack Pearl Harbour?

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Introduction

Why did the Japanese attack Pearl Harbour? On the 7th December 1941 the Japanese launched one of the most surprising attacks of the 20th century. The attack was aimed at the industrially, physically, economically, militarily, overall extremely powerful nation, the United States of America. They attacked the strong Pacific Naval base that was Pearl Harbour, Hawaii. The attack was carefully designed by Admiral Yamomoto. The plan was put forward by Yamomoto to the other generals and politicians, after a degree of debate the Japanese Prime Minister general Tojo agreed that the attack was to take place. Japan is a small country that was almost totally reliant on import; its small country's resources could not continue to feed its dense population. The difficult situation was only worsened by the Wall Street crash of 1929, which hit Japan a lot harder than a lot of other countries, of which some were much more self reliant. It was the post depression period, which saw an even more nationalistic party come into power. With the depression Japan reverted back to the idea of the Samurai code, something that has always been a part of the Japanese culture to an extent. ...read more.

Middle

It needed 'Living space', it needed to expand. So in 1931 Japan started her campaign, she invaded Manchuria, Japan went into China and by 1937 controlled the majority of China. Showing great militant strength, Japan's empire became the Greater Eastern Co-Prosperity sphere. Japan infuriated the League of Nations and when asked about her actions in Manchuria, Japan became the first Nation to abdicate from the League of Nations of her own free will, showing the League Of Nations as weak. Soon others followed Japan's actions. Soon the League of Nations reputation diminished and subsequently disbanded. For the people of Japan morale was high, they had defied and shocked the world. Once the War started the colonies of Britain and France were unprotected, hence Japan's later capturing of French Indo-China. The only nation that stood in the way of Japan's rule of the biggest ocean in the World was the U.S.A. but what could Japan do to stop the will of a much more powerful country? A nation that continued to have increasing unrest at Japan's Militant actions, America had made plans to stub out Japan's plans. ...read more.

Conclusion

By placing the Trade Tariffs America was running Japan into bankruptcy. Her people would starve. America essentially only left Japan with one option. Otherwise Japan would be devastated her people would up rise and the possibility of Revolution would increase against the Government. Germany would have also wanted Japan to attack America, as America entering the war became more possible the longer the war went on. If Japan could have success over America it would only make Hitler's aims easier. America's actions to try and decrease the power of Japan in a non-physically aggressive way. Put Japan into a corner, and her only option left was to attack. So Japan attacked Pearl Harbour for a multitude of reasons: to decrease her Naval power, so she could take control of the majority of the Pacific for economic reasons before America took revenge. To help her allies aims in the European theatre of War. But mainly in self interest, in that if Japan wanted to continue in her increase of power, whilst continuing to feed her people without her previous imports Japan could not rely on her own exports for money and was left with no other option to attack America, when the trade embargoes were put in place. ...read more.

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