Why did america declare war on Japan

Dec 2010
11,643
Near St. Louis.
Although the primary difference there is that the DEI were a colony, not an integrated part of Holland. Hawaii is a US state, and Taiwan is technically a province of China. A lot of emotional investment could be and was put into colonies, but it still wasn't the same thing.
The Territory of Hawaii didn't become a state until after WWII.
 

royal744

Ad Honoris
Jul 2013
10,118
San Antonio, Tx
True, but they were influential enough that I doubt FDR had any desire to declare war on Japan a matter of months before the presidential election to defend the colonies of a European country that, for all intents and purposes, no longer existed.
I don't want to be off-topic either, but it bears mentioning that the Dutch Royal Family sought refuge in England; that the recognized government of the Netherlands was temporarily not in Holland; that the Dutch West Indies and the Netherlands East Indies and Dutch Guyana and Dutch Borneo all continued to be ruled by the free government of the Netherlands. So, yeah, it did exist in fact.

I agree-with cconstantine, that the Japanese were extremely foolish and displayed a complete lack of understanding of American politics when they attacked Pearl Harbor. In their ignorance, they did not realize that the moment they did that, they would lose all their Pacific territories, including the NEI, but everything else in SE Asia and China as well. A very, very bad decision.

The Japanese still don't have any natural resources; yet this tiny island has the third largest economy in the world. Amazing what you can do when you're backed into a corner without any military.
 
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botully

Ad Honorem
Feb 2011
3,467
Amelia, Virginia, USA
What is really strange about Japan's decision for war is the diplomacy angle. They decided that diplomacy would not yield the desired result, so they attacked the US...then counted on diplomacy to end the war. They held to this bizarre notion because it was the only scenario in which war with the US did not end in utter defeat.
 
Oct 2012
8,545
I don't want to be off-topic either, but it bears mentioning that the Dutch Royal Family sought refuge in England; that the recognized government of the Netherlands was temporarily not in Holland; that the Dutch West Indies and the Netherlands East Indies and Dutch Guyana and Dutch Borneo all continued to be ruled by the free government of the Netherlands. So, yeah, it did exist in fact.

I agree-with cconstantine, that the Japanese were extremely foolish and displayed a complete lack of understanding of American politics when they attacked Pearl Harbor. In their ignorance, they did not realize that the moment they did that, they would lose all their Pacific territories, including the NEI, but everything else in SE Asia and China as well. A very, very bad decision.

The Japanese still don't have any natural resources; yet this tiny island has the third largest economy in the world. Amazing what you can do when you're backed into a corner without any military.
The government existed, no question, the country, not so much. But even if the Netherlands' territorial integrity had been intact, I doubt the US would have went to war to defend their colonies on the eve of a presidential election; it would just be a far too dangerous move politically.
 

royal744

Ad Honoris
Jul 2013
10,118
San Antonio, Tx
You own a grocery store. I regularly purchase groceries at your store. I do something that offends you and you refuse to sell me any more of your groceries until I apologize and change my behavior. Instead I return to your store with a baseball bat and start smashing up the merchandise, and threaten more of the same, unless you relent and agree to lift that produce ban. Are my actions justified?
Answer: of course not...
 
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