Why did Japan attack the USA?

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
21,060
SoCal
#21
Oddly enough that was what they were hoping for. Japan was economically bleeding to death in China. They idea was to have a quick war with the US....lose....get an honorable peace, and reset the diplomatic switches back to neutral.
How exactly was this going to benefit Japan, though?
 
Jul 2016
9,680
USA
#22
How exactly was this going to benefit Japan, though?
He's wrong. They weren't trying to lose a war when they attacked Pearl Harbor. They just didn't think the war would last long. Most wars in history did not end the way WW2 did. Most end rather indecisively, where one side comes away with more than it entered after forcing another side to cede something. The Japanese wanted the US out of their part of Asia, and believed that it would take too long to rebuild their navy, and that by the time it did happen, the Japanese would be so entrenched the US would not risk a long and nasty war to retake all that territory. But the attack on Pearl Harbor was bad but not devastating. The US bounced back quickly. The US even disregarded its own initially proposed strategy to first win in Europe by committing large amounts of material and manpower to the Pacific right away and continuously. And obviously, most of all, the Japanese seriously miscalculated on American resolve.
 
Mar 2019
1,635
Kansas
#23
How exactly was this going to benefit Japan, though?
Well they had worked themselves into a situation where every major power disliked them and distrusted them. By having the war they could act like a fresh start and disentangle themselves from the diplomatic and economic mess they were in.
 
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Jul 2016
9,680
USA
#24
Well they had worked themselves into a situation where every major power disliked them and distrusted them. By having the war they could act like a fresh start and disentangle themselves from the diplomatic and economic mess they were in.
That is not why they started the war. They didn't want a reset, they wanted victory and thought they could achieve it, because other Euro powers were busy and weak, and they assumed the US was just weak.
 
Sep 2012
1,072
Tarkington, Texas
#25
The Philippines have a number of minerals: Gold, Copper, Iron, Chromite and Coal. Oil was discovered off Palawan after the war. My Dad worked there a time or two as a Mud Engineer. The Japanese could have also sent food back to Japan. The PI was the world's largest producer of Manila Hemp (rope).

Pruitt
 
Dec 2015
3,732
USA
#26
One question I will always have is how could the Empire Of Japan say they were honorable...Honor was a very important trait to the Japanese Military during WW2. I would like to know what was going on in the Japanese situation room on the fateful Dec 7th day, what Japanese were saying we should not attack America without a declaration of war or even saying we should not attack the US at all but pursue diplomacy?

What did occur was the EOJ launched a surprise attack against the USA when at the time on Dec 6 1941 there was no declaration of war between the US and Japan. But after Dec 7th 1941 that changed and war was declared. Aside from this there were post WW2 various war crimes charges against the EOJ which would again call into question the Bushido code of honor that the Japanese military claimed to uphold. The idea of chivalry and of even letting ones enemy know they are about to be attacked was a longtime Catholic European value such as for example when King James IV bravely led his men in a battle against a much stronger English force led by Catherine of Aragon. But the idea of honor or chivalry was also long connected with the East, with that of the Empires of Japan and China. King James IV put himself in front of his army and died at the Battle of Flooden, where as otoh the Emperor of Japan did not do the same in WW2.

That said The D day invasion date of June 6th 1944 was unknown, in other words the date and location of D day was unknown to Germany on June 5 1944 but the Germans at the time knew America was going to strike at some point. OTOH the Japanese launched a surprise attack against the US on Dec 7th 1941 and that was IMO not honorable to launch such a surprise attack. Had the Japanese declared war on the US on Dec 6th whom knows if Pearl harbor even occurs?
 
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Naomasa298

Forum Staff
Apr 2010
35,053
T'Republic of Yorkshire
#27
One question I will always have is how could the Empire Of Japan say they were honorable...Honor was a very important trait to the Japanese Military during WW2. I would like to know what was going on in the Japanese sitation room on the fateful Dec 7th day, what Japanese were saying we should not attack America without a declaration of war or even saying we should not attack the US at all but pursue diplomacy? Yet the EOJ launched a surprise attack against the USA when at the time on Dec 6 1941 there was no declaration of war between the US and Japan. But after Dec 7th 1941 that changed and war was declared. The idea of chivalry and of even letting ones enemy know they are about to be attacked was a longtime Catholic European value going back to King James IV whom bravely led his men in a battle against a much stronger English force led by Catherine of Aragon.
Perhaps it escaped your notice, but the Japanese are neither Catholic nor European.
 
Jul 2016
9,680
USA
#28
One question I will always have is how could the Empire Of Japan say they were honorable...Honor was a very important trait to the Japanese Military during WW2. I would like to know what was going on in the Japanese sitation room on the fateful Dec 7th day, what Japanese were saying we should not attack America without a declaration of war or even saying we should not attack the US at all but pursue diplomacy? Yet the EOJ launched a surprise attack against the USA when at the time on Dec 6 1941 there was no declaration of war between the US and Japan. But after Dec 7th 1941 that changed and war was declared. Aside from this there were post WW2 various war crimes charges against the EOJ which would again call into question the Bushido code of honor that the Japanese military claimed to uphold. The idea of chivalry and of even letting ones enemy know they are about to be attacked was a longtime Catholic European value going back to King James IV whom bravely led his men in a battle against a much stronger English force led by Catherine of Aragon. The D day invasion date of June 6th 1944 was unknown, but the Germans at the time knew America was going to strike at some point. OTOH the Japanese launched a surprise attack against the US on Dec 7th 1941 and that was IMO not honorable to launch such a surprise attack. Had the Japanese declared war on the US on Dec 6th whom knows if Pearl harbor even occurs?
What in God's name does Jun 6, 1944 invasion of Europe have to do with anything? Are you suggesting that was when hostilities began between the US and Germany?

Why would European cultural historic understanding of chivalry have mattered to the Japanese? Do you think their culture was copying it?
 
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