Today is the 75th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. The Daily Oklahoman has a fascinating and moving feature looking not only at the coverage of that event but of its anniversary through the war years and beyond.
We often forget that the first year of the war we were losing. The editorial for December 7, 1942, called it “the bitterest and most humiliating year in our history.” The next year’s paper was sober but more upbeat. Then we see optimism. In 1945 we see the exuberance–and relief–of victory, along with a memorial to those who died achieving it.
The feature gives us a picture of what a unified nation looks like and something of what it felt like to be caught up in a collective cause that was a matter of life and death, not only for individuals, friends, and loved ones–nearly every family had someone fighting–but for the country itself. It must have been terrible to go through, but also good.
And we can’t help but wonder if America would be capable of that today.
Read a sampling from the newspaper accounts after the jump. [Read more…]