Remembering Pearl Harbor attack 76 years later

Published: Tuesday, December 06, 2016 @ 12:25 PM
Updated: Thursday, December 07, 2017 @ 9:27 AM

It was a "day that would live in infamy," the day that the United States was attacked by the military forces of Japan at the U.S. Naval Base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.

The attack on Dec. 7, 1941 came as a surprise to the men and women serving in the tropical military compound.

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The U.S. had not yet officially taken up arms in World War II, but it was helping supply Great Britain in the battle with the Nazis. Government officials were also trying to get Japan to stop expanding its military hold in Asia and the Pacific, according to the National World War 2 Museum.

The attack, the brainchild of Japanese Adm. Isoroku Yamamoto, who thought of the attack, and Capt. Minoru Genda, who planned it, came from a book written in 1925. In "The Great Pacific War," author Hector Bywater showed how a fictional attack on the U.S. fleet by the Japanese could potentially pull America into a war. 

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U.S. officials were warned of the attack when a cryptologist, or code breaker, intercepted a message from Japan that asked about ship movements and placement in Pearl Harbor. The code breaker's superior said he would get back to her on Dec. 8. On the morning of Dec. 7, a radar operator on Oahu saw planes heading toward the island and the base, but was told by his superior that they were probably planes that were scheduled to arrive on Pearl Harbor that day and not to worry about it, according to historians at the WW2 Museum.

He was mistaken.

The Japanese sent a declaration of war to the U.S. shortly before the attack, but it was delayed and was not sent to Washington until the bombings began. 

The attack by the Japanese started at 7:55 a.m. after a captain issued the code "Tora, Tora, Tora" to the planes flying over Oahu. The surprise attack was over in just over an hour and a half.

Breaking down the numbers:

  • 353 Japanese aircraft
  • 40 torpedo planes
  • 103 level bombers
  • 131 dive bombers
  • 79 bombers
  • Four heavy carriers
  • 2,403 U.S. personnel killed
  • including 68 civilians
  • 19 ships destroyed or damaged
  • Three aircraft carriers were not in the harbor and were spared
  • 29 Japanese aircraft destroyed
  • 5 Japanese small submarines destroyed
  • 129 Japanese military members killed
  • One Japanese soldier taken prisoner

Six months after the attack, in June 1942, U.S. aircraft carriers sank four Japanese carriers during the Battle of Midway, a decisive battle of the U.S. campaign against Japan, which ended in August 1945.

The remains of the USS Arizona sit just under the water at the base. A bridge stretches over the battleship that accounted for nearly half of the deaths during the attack. The crew who gave their lives are still entombed in the hull of the ship.

Posted by Pacific Historic Parks - USS Arizona Memorial on Friday, October 2, 2015

Pearl Harbor continues to be an active military complex. It is the headquarters of the U.S. Pacific Fleet as well as a National Historic Landmark.

Each year over the more than 70 years since the attack, aging survivors, whose numbers are dwindling, return to pay their respects to their shipmates who were killed.

When their time comes, the men who served on the USS Arizona during the attack and survived the deadly morning can be interred with their shipmates ever patrolling the Pacific. As of 2016, the National Park Service says 27 sailors and two Marines have been interred into the hull of the ship. After the ceremony, an urn holding the ashes of the departed are handed to divers, who place it in an area surrounding gun turret number four.

The honor of returning to Pearl Harbor for their final watch isn't solely for survivors of the Arizona's crew from the day of the attack. Any Pearl Harbor survivor can have his ashes spread over the harbor where his ship was moored during the attack, while members of the Arizona's crew from before Dec. 7, 1941, can have their ashes spread above the historic ship.

Morgan Freeman honored with lifetime achievement award at SAG Awards

Published: Sunday, January 21, 2018 @ 11:43 PM

LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 21:  Honoree Morgan Freeman accepts the Life Achievement Award from actor Rita Moreno onstage during the 24th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at The Shrine Auditorium on January 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. 27522_010  (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for Turner Image)
Christopher Polk
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 21: Honoree Morgan Freeman accepts the Life Achievement Award from actor Rita Moreno onstage during the 24th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at The Shrine Auditorium on January 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. 27522_010 (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for Turner Image)(Christopher Polk)

Legendary actor Morgan Freeman was presented with the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award at the 24th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards — one of the most prestigious honors in the entertainment industry — which was given to him by longtime colleague and friend Rita Moreno.

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“Morgan is way more than just an actor, narrator, producer, humanitarian. This man is a national treasure,” Moreno said.

When he came to the stage, the 80-year-old icon traded a few playful jokes with Moreno, before moving on to the thank you’s.

“These moments in one’s life usually will call for an entire litany of thank you’s. I can’t do that because I don’t know all of your names, so I won’t try,” said Freeman. “This is beyond honor. This is a place in history.”

But towards the end of his speech, Freeman commented on the SAG award statue: 

“I wasn’t gonna do this, but I’m gonna tell you what’s wrong with this statue,” he said. “It works from the back. From the front, it’s gender-specific. Maybe I started something.”

2018 SAG Awards: Gary Oldman, Frances McDormand, complete list of winners

Published: Sunday, January 21, 2018 @ 8:18 PM

LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 21:  Statue of the Screen Actors Guild Actor is seen at the 24th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at The Shrine Auditorium on January 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. 27522_009  (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Turner Image)
Dimitrios Kambouris
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 21: Statue of the Screen Actors Guild Actor is seen at the 24th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at The Shrine Auditorium on January 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. 27522_009 (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Turner Image)(Dimitrios Kambouris)

Hollywood stars honored television and cinematic performances at the 24th annual Screen Actors Guild Awards Sunday. 

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Still no deal to end shutdown as Senate delays next vote until Monday

Published: Sunday, January 21, 2018 @ 4:43 PM

Lawmakers in Congress on Sunday failed to reach a deal on plan to fund the federal government, meaning the work week will being with furloughs for hundreds of thousands of federal workers across the nation, but there was a hint of progress as a Senate vote on a temporary funding measure was delayed until noon on Monday, with Republican leaders offering a plan which would guarantee a Senate debate on immigration matters in February, in hopes that Democrats would then help to fund the government in the meantime.

“Let’s step back from the brink,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said on the Senate floor late on Sunday evening, as he urged Democrats to allow the government to re-open, and continue negotiations on a host of issues, including immigration.

“The shutdown should stop today,” McConnell added.

McConnell outlined a plan to fund operations of the government through February 8, and said that if by that date no agreement had been reached on how to deal with DACA and illegal immigrant “Dreamers” in the United States, then he would agree to bring the issue up on the Senate floor for debate and votes.

That immediately won the support of two Republicans who have been trying to broker a deal on the issue.

“The Senate should act like the Senate,” said Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ), who endorsed the idea of regular order on the Senate floor on immigration.

“This is more than a reasonable proposal by the Majority Leader,” said Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who spent much of the last three days shuttling between McConnell, Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer, and a host of Senators in both parties, in search of common ground.

“It would be my intention to resolve these issues as soon as possible, so we can move on to other issues important to our country,” McConnell added.

But Senate Democrats were not ready to accept, as Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer objected to McConnell’s attempt to hold a vote Sunday night on the plan for a temporary budget that would last until February 8, which is just 18 days away.

Still – Senate observers saw that as a positive, as neither McConnell nor Schumer engaged in any scorched earth exchanges, unlike earlier in the day. To some, that may mean a deal is in the works.

Originally, the Senate was to have voted at 1 am on Monday morning, but that vote was delayed until noon, as Republicans hope Democrats will re-think their opposition, and allow a funding measure to go through the Congress.

Former Disney star Orlando Brown arrested after family disturbance, police say

Published: Sunday, January 21, 2018 @ 7:11 PM

Orlando Brown. (Photo: Barstow Police Department)
Orlando Brown. (Photo: Barstow Police Department)

Former Disney Channel star Orlando Brown was recently arrested following what authorities say was a violent altercation at an apartment in California.

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The 30-year-old “That’s So Raven” actor was reportedly engaged in a dispute with his girlfriend and his girlfriend’s mother when an officer from the Barstow Police Department arrived on the scene at around 8 a.m. Thursday.

The officer realized there were active arrest warrants on Brown and his girlfriend’s mother, so they were both arrested and booked into the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department Barstow Jail, according to a police press release.

Brown’s bail was set at $25,000.

He previously served time in 2013 after failing to complete court-ordered alcohol education classes in connection with a previous DUI arrest.