The Significance of Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day
National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day is a solemn occasion to commemorate the thousands of lives lost on December 7, 1941, and to honor the sacrifices made by American soldiers and their families during World War II. The surprise attack on the American naval base at Pearl Harbor has left indelible marks on generations to come.
On that fateful day, Japanese planes attacked the United States Naval Base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii Territory, killing more than 2,300 Americans. The U.S.S. Arizona was completely destroyed, and the U.S.S. Oklahoma capsized.
Observance and Flag Etiquette
While Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day is not a federal holiday and does not lead to the closure of government offices, schools, or businesses, many organizations hold special events to remember those killed or injured at Pearl Harbor. As directed by the United States Congress, the American Flag should be flown at half-staff from sunrise until sunset in front of homes, businesses, the White House, and all government buildings.
The Impact of the Attack
The two-hour attack resulted in the deaths of 103 civilians and 2,335 military personnel, including 1,177 crew members from the battleship USS Arizona alone. The Japanese pilots and submarines damaged 19 ships and over 300 aircraft. Despite the devastation, only three ships – the USS Arizona, Oklahoma, and Utah – were completely lost.
The Aftermath and the United States’ Entry into World War II
The attack was a decisive moment that led the formerly neutral United States to enter World War II. The United States was compelled to take a firm stance against Japan, thus becoming involved in two simultaneous wars – World War II and the Pacific War against Japan.
Commemorations and Tributes
National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day, also known as Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day or Pearl Harbor Day, is observed with tributes across the country. Survivors share their stories and participate in reunions. The Pearl Harbor National Memorial is dedicated to the crews lost on December 7, 1941. For many of the crew members of the USS Utah, USS Arizona, and USS Oklahoma, Pearl Harbor is their final resting place. The erected memorials serve as a poignant reminder of the lives lost during the attack and the devastation caused by the war.
On August 23, 1994, the United States Congress designated December 7 of each year as National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day. Until that day in 1941, the United States had remained neutral, with no interest in joining any war, only providing support to the allied countries of Europe with certain resources. The attack on Pearl Harbor left the United States with no choice but to join the battle.
Social Media Recognition
The hashtag #PearlHarborRemembranceDay is used on social media to raise awareness about the events of the morning of December 7, 1941, at the American navy base in Pearl Harbor, ensuring that the sacrifices made on that day are never forgotten.