World War II | Teen Ink

World War II

August 17, 2010
By Andrew Huang BRONZE, San Jose, California
Andrew Huang BRONZE, San Jose, California
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

World War II was one of the most devastating wars the US took part in, and began almost immediately after World War I. At this time, only two parties were left: the communist party and the socialist party controlled by Adolf Hitler. Hitler had managed to win the support of the German citizens and started a plan to dominate the world, invading countries such as Austria, Czechoslovakia, and Lithuania. When he attacked Poland, however, many countries like United States, England, Soviet Union, and France, known as the Allied Powers, banded together and tried to stop Hitler. These military aggressions thus started World War 2. In the beginning, Hitler and his army were doing well; however, Hitler later thought he needed allies of his own and convinced Japan that if it were his ally, he would help it win China. Unfortunately, allying with Japan was a mistake that led to Hitler’s fall; when Japan bombed Pearl Harbor, it angered the US and forced it to join the Allied Powers in World War II.
Many people know that the Pearl Harbor incident was a horrific bombing that forced US to join the Allied Powers in World War II. What they don’t know, however, are the reasons behind it. For instance, when the US placed an oil embargo on Japan, it angered the nation and forced it to bomb Pearl Harbor. Pearl Harbor was a military base that kept a lot of equipment, including warships, the power station, shipyard, torpedoes, fuel storage facilities, and fighter jets. The Japanese were forced to do this bombing, since the US had placed an oil embargo on Japan. Because Japan was poor in resources and received 80% of its oil from the US it relied on American oil the embargo denied them. Thus, Japan faced the decision of either to backing down from their quest in China or staying in China and going to war; the Japanese decided to take the risk and stay in China, bombing Pearl Harbor to force the US Navy to retreat to California and allow the Japanese to conquer the Pacific Islands.
The effects of this bombing were enormous: four Navy battleships, three cruisers, three destroyers, an anti-aircraft ship, and a minelayer were destroyed. Moreover, 188 aircraft were destroyed, 2,402 people were killed, and 1,282 were wounded. Even Japan had some losses, but their losses were light, with only 29 aircrafts and 5 submarines destroyed, and 65 men killed or wounded. On the other hand, the United States lost a lot of money and lives from this incident, and possibly faced oil spillovers into the waters from sinking ships.
In the beginning of the war, Germany was fighting well, successfully conquering many lands in Europe. When the US joined the war, however, Germany began falling in power and started to retreat back. The US was a big military power at the time, and could produce more tanks, planes, ammunition, and weapons in larger quantities and faster. Moreover, the United States was able to recruit tons of soldiers to fight, overwhelming Hitler’s army.
In conclusion, allying with Japan was the cause of Hitler’s fall from power, primarily because Japan bombed Pearl Harbor, and thus forced the US to join the war. The US was a powerful military power at the time and could produce more equipment faster. It also had knowledge of powerful bombs and could make Japan surrender by using the bombs, dropping the bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, forcing Hitler to fight alone.

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