Tragedy struck the young United States nation in the early morning of December 7, 1941. Japan's surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, a naval base in Hawaii, was made as a preemptive strike to dissuade America from interfering with their empire expansion in Southeast Asia. The devastating attack resulted in over 2,000 deaths, destroyed 12 ships, and demolished 160 aircrafts in just under two hours.
What would swiftly follow was a call to arms, with President Roosevelt declaring war on Japan. The US stepped onto the battlefield of WWII with a vengeance, holding onto the painful memory of Pearl Harbor while grimly marching forward. It led to some great American patriotism and also the worst civil rights violations faced by Japanese Americans, forced to relocate or face internment. Gathered below are photographs of the Pearl Harbor attack that thrust America into steely action, immortalized in the words, "a date which will live in infamy."