Wednesday, December 07, 2005

December 7, 1945 vs. September 11, 2005: Infamous comparisons

December 7, 1945 vs. September 11, 2005: Infamous comparisons
Posted on Wednesday, December 07 @ 10:07:34 EST

Ed Rampell

December 7th marks the 60th anniversary of Imperial Japan's 1941 sneak attack on Pearl Harbor, which has often been likened to the 9/11 terrorist strikes. This past Sept. 11th was the fourth anniversary of Al-Qaeda's airborne assaults on the Twin Towers and Pentagon, which some have dubbed "the New Pearl Harbor." It's thought provoking to compare this four-year milepost to where America stood on Dec. 7, 1945, four years after what President Roosevelt called the "date which will live in infamy."

Following Japan's Pearl Harbor strike, the U.S. declared war on Tokyo on Dec. 8, 1941. Rome and Berlin declared war on Washington Dec. 11, 1941, which then declared war on Mussolini's Italy and Hitler's Germany that same day.

Although Congress never declared war on Afghanistan or Iraq, on Oct. 11, 2002 Congress authorized President Bush to use force in Iraq. The U.S. invaded Iraq March 19, 2003, although Baghdad hadn't attacked America. U.N. Weapons Inspectors were unable to find the WMDs that Bush claimed threatened the U.S. but subsequent inquiries proved didn't exist. The 2005 documentary Beyond Treason claimed the U.S. used depleted uranium, which spreads radiation, in Iraq. An Italian documentary broadcast Nov. 8, 2005 contended U.S. forces used white phosphorous - considered by some to be a napalm-like chemical weapon - against civilians in Falluja in 2004.

A week after the Pearl Harbor air raid, a salvage organization was established. By February 1942, three battleships, two cruisers, two destroyers and other vessels were repaired. Three additional damaged battleships went on to serve in WWII, thanks to history's greatest salvage operation.

Groundbreaking on the Pentagon began Sept. 11, 1941; it was dedicated Jan. 15, 1943, costing $83 million. The Pentagon's partial reconstruction after it was attacked cost $700 million; its outer ring was officially reopened Sept. 11, 2002. As of Sept. 11, 2005, no major buildings have been rebuilt at Ground Zero....