What: Imperial Japan attacks the U.S. Navy's Pacific Ocean Fleet|
When: 7:55 a.m.; Dec. 7, 1941, Seventy-one years ago today.
Where: Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.
Why: Japan sought to limit U.S. ability to interfere with establishment of a "Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere" to be ruled by the Japanese emperor.
How: 353 warplanes launched from six aircraft carriers.
Immediate result: Twenty-one American warships sunk or damaged, 2,403 people killed and 1,178 wounded.
Long-term result: The U.S. declared war on Japan, after a passionate speech by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, who described Dec. 7 as "a day that will live in infamy." The war ended three years and eight months later when the U.S. dropped two atomic bombs on Japanese cities.
Longer term result: Japan emerged from a post-war American occupation as a democracy in which the emperor was reduced to figure-head status. The two nations have been firm allies since.
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