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Was surprise attacking the United States at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 the best course of action for the Japanese government to take?

Team Fictional: Ashley Gruszecki, Missy Muffet, Reddie Riding-Hood, and Bob Builder


Importance: Our topic analyzes whether or not the Japanese decision to attack America at Pearl Harbor was a good decision. This is an important topic because of the profound impact this decision has had on twentieth century history.

Background: It facilitated the American entry into the Second World War, thereby altering the course of the war in favor of the Allies. This was a major turning point in the war; without it, the Axis may very well have been victorious. Had the Japanese decided differently, we would be living in a completely different world.

Analysis: To investigate this topic, our team has decided to use the trade-off scenario.

Results Summary: Based on the trade-off scenario, the appropriate course of action for Japan was their Original Decision, to surprise attack the U.S. Pacific Naval fleet stationed at Pearl Harbor. The attack occured to achieve two primary objectives: (1) To deliver a decapitating blow to the the United States Pacific Fleet so that Japan would have the strongest navy in the Pacific and would therefore be uncontested in their Pacific expansion, and (2) To overcome the United States oil embargo by conquering the oil rich Dutch East Indies and Burma. When all courses of action are placed on the same playing field in monetary terms, it is evident that the Original Decision is the course of action that satisfies the Objectives the best. It delivers the decapitating blow to the Naval Fleet and it was very close to obtaining the second objective of collecting the most oil and natural resources.

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