BLUFBefore WW2, US sanctions prevented Japan from obtaining vital raw resources—Japan thought a pre-emptive strike against the USA followed by an invasion of the Philippines would force the US to make peace—they were wrong.
The Editors of National Geographic make the following points:
- Japan was an imperial power controlling Taiwan, Korea, and Chinese Manchuria.
- American opposition to Japanese imperialism seemed hypocritical as the U.S. had occupied the Philippines.
- Adm. Yamamoto said Japan's only hope of keeping its empire was smashing the US Pacific Fleet in Pearl Harbour, Hawaii, before the U.S. Navy fully mobilised.
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References from the Web:
- Why did Japan attack Pearl Harbor?-Imperial War Museum
- The Path to Pearl Harbor-The National WW2 Museum