80th Anniversary of Pearl Harbor

Today marks the 80th anniversary of the bombing of Pearl Harbor. On December 7, 1941, Japanese forces surprise attacked the U.S. naval base, where they destroyed or damaged nearly 20 American naval vessels and over 300 airplanes. More than 2,400 Americans died in the attack and another 1,000 were wounded. The day after the bombing occurred, President Franklin D. Roosevelt asked Congress to declare war on Japan. For more insight on the events that took place at Pearl Harbor, check out the backlist books below.

The Pearl Harbor Myth: Rethinking the Unthinkable (Potomac Books, 2008) by George Victor discusses in detail Roosevelt’s developing strategy-both military and diplomatic-and his secret alliances to save the world from Hitler. It contains a wealth of fresh material on secret diplomacy; on secret military strategy, planning, and intelligence; and on disguised combat operations that began six months before the Pearl Harbor attack.

The Pearl Harbor Papers: Inside the Japanese Plans (Potomac Books, 1999) edited by Donald M. Goldstein and Katherine V. Dillon comprises the original Japanese documents related to the attack of December 7, 1941. Donald M. Goldstein, the dean of Pearl Harbor historians, and his frequent collaborator, Katherine V. Dillon, explain and place into context secret plans, battle group histories, and intimate letters and diary extracts of the key Japanese naval officers. It also features a reproduction of one of the most important documents of the war—the top-secret map drawn by the attack’s lead pilot, Mitsuo Fuchida, to show Emperor Hirohito the battle’s results. 

God’s Samurai: Lead Pilot at Pearl Harbor (Potomac Books, 2003) by Gordon W. Prange with Donald M. Goldstein and Katherine V. Dillon  is the unusual story of Mitsuo Fuchida, the career aviator who led the attack on Pearl Harbor and participated in most of the fiercest battles of the Pacific war. A valuable record of major events, it is also the personal story of a man swept along by his times. Reared in the vanished culture of early twentieth-century Japan, war hero Fuchida returned home to become a simple farmer. 

The Way It Was- Pearl Harbor: The Original Photographs (Potomac Books, 1995) by Donald M. Goldstein, Katherine V. Dillon, and J. Michael Wenger is a collection of 430 prints from Japanese and U.S. sources, most having never been seen before by the general public. The prints accompanied by various maps and sketches have been arranged to follow the various phases of the battle that took place.

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