Flags at Half Staff Dec. 7 in Remembrance of Pearl Harbor Day
The state of Illinois announced today that flags will be flown at half staff from sunrise to sunset Thursday, Dec. 7, 2917, in remembrance of Pearl Harbor Day.
The Department of Central Management Services has received notice from Gov. Bruce Rauner that all persons or entities covered by the Illinois Flag Display Act are to fly the flags at half-staff.
About Pearl Harbor Day
On Thursday, Americans will mark the 76th anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in Hawaii.
Here are some facts surrounding that fateful day, courtesy of USA Today:
Just before 8 a.m. on Sunday, Dec. 7, 1941, hundreds of Japanese planes made a surprise raid on Pearl Harbor, a major U.S. Navy base near Honolulu, Hawaii, according to the History Channel. During the raid, which was launched from aircraft carriers, nearly 20 American naval vessels, including eight battleships, were damaged or destroyed, as well as more than 300 aircraft. More than 2,400 Americans died in the attack, including civilians, and at least 1,000 were wounded.
Why was it a pivotal moment in U.S. history?
In short, the attack brought the United States into World War II.
Until the raid, the U.S. had hesitated to join the conflict, which had started on Sept. 1, 1939, after Germany invaded Poland. In those nearly two-and-a-half years, the U.S. had extensively aided the United Kingdom, virtually the sole source of resistance to the Nazis in Europe, but a general mood of isolationism – brought on, according to the State Department’s Office of the Historian, by the Great Depression and the memory of huge losses during World War I – led Roosevelt and Congress to be wary of intervention. Pearl Harbor reversed that in under a day, with Congress, less than an hour after Roosevelt’s speech, issuing a declaration of war.