On the morning of December 7, 1941, the course of history would be altered. In a surprise attack, Japan attempted to discourage the United States from entering the Pacific War by bombing the military base at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii. The attack was devastating, but it ultimately influenced the U.S. to not only enter the war, but pummel the enemy with weapons the world had never seen before.
While Pearl Harbor is a relatively well known event, there are probably some thing that occurred during and after that some folks might not know about. A new video from Military.com sheds some light on the lesser known facts of Pearl Harbor.
Check out the video below:
First on the list is probably one of the most surprising Pearl Harbor-related facts that actually occurred after the initial bombings. The day following the event, Congress was ultimately tasked to vote on war with Japan. Having purposely avoided conflict up until this point, the vote was expected to be unanimous given the drastic change in circumstances. But not everyone voted in favor of war.
Jeannette Rankin of Montana was the sole “nay” vote. A lifelong pacifist, she not only angered other members of Congress, but she effectively committed political suicide. The unpopular vote ended her political career.
Another lesser known tidbit from the video was the fact that Pearl Harbor actually nearly suffered from a second attack.
On March 4, 1942, Operation K was conducted by two Japanese pilots. Under the cover of night, the pilots landed in Oahu with intentions to once again bomb the base at Pearl Harbor. However, due to unfavorable weather conditions, the pilots became disoriented and unintentionally dropped their payloads on an unsuspecting village.
Fortunately, no one was killed in the embarrassing attack.
In a fact that seems almost too strange to be true, the USS Arizona memorial, the most widely recognized WWII monument to this day, almost never happened. But an unlikely music star, one Elvis Presley, helped bring it to life.
Presley, having just finished his own two year stint of military duty, came to Hawaii to perform a benefit concert in order to raise money for the proposed memorial. The King’s concert brought in more than $65,000, which at the time made up more than 10% of the $500,00 cost to build the monument.