Later on, this would be known as the Tripartite Pact . IV. Japanese offensive during 1937 to 1944: The Pacific Theater 4. 1 Campaign with China and other Southeast Asian nations The Japanese offensive started with the second Sino-Japanese war of July 13, 1937. It is Japans first break with the US treaty of 1911 . Both Australia and the United States responded with the embargo of raw materials like ore, which was crucial to the economy of Japan. The US Japan relations further deteriorated when Japan attacked Vicky French controlled indo china on July 24, 1941.
The incursion caused the US, UK and Netherlands to impose oil embargo on Japan . This in turn left Japan with two options: one is to give up its expansionist plans and its newly conquered territories or go on further and conquer oil rich nations or territory to beef up its dwindling oil supply. As history would have it, Japan opted for the latter. Japan launched almost simultaneous attacks on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 and then the Philippines on December 8 . Japan went on to assault the British and Dutch territory, oil rich Borneo on December 15.
From there, Japanese forces moved to attack and occupy other neighboring allied territories in South East Asia and the Pacific such as Malaysia, Singapore, Burma, Netherlands, East India, New Guinea, and the Solomon islands. Resistance to the Japanese offensive was futile. Japans quest for expansion was virtually unchecked from July 1937 to 1943 . 4. 2 The Bombing of Pearl Harbor The United States was drawn into World War 2 with the bombing of Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. Japan wanted to cripple the US Pacific fleet.
At that time, Japan only had six months worth of oil supply and the oil embargo imposed by the US, UK and the Netherlands posed a serious threat to enable Japan to proceed with its expansion plans and timetable . The bombing of Pearl Harbor destroyed most of the American Aircraft docked on the island but the surprise air raid failed to get its main target the four American aircraft carriers that were off at sea. Also, the main dock, supply and repair facilities incurred little damage and the fuel storage was left intact . The attack on Pearl Harbor galvanized the American Publics support for the government to declare war on Japan.
The three year occupation of the Philippines The Philippines have been a colony of the US since the Philippines was sold by the Spain with the treaty of Paris for a sum of $20 million. After quashing a rebellion led by Emilio Aguinaldo, the US started the occupation of the Philippine islands in 1896 . Then, right after World War 1, the US started the training of Philippine scouts and the army in 1922 up to the start of World War 2. They also established several naval bases in the islands, several of which were bombed by the Japanese air force in an air raid immediately preceding the bombing of Pearl Harbor [3 and 4].
While other colonies of the UK capitulated to the Japanese forces within days of the attack, the combined US and Filipino forces repelled the occupation for 4 months. This engaged the Japanese armys strength and gave the US time to prepare and regroup in Australia under the leadership of General Douglas MacArthur [3 and 4]. It was during this time that Macarthur stated: I shall return as he was recalled to pull out from Corregidor Island to safety in Australia, to plan the recapture of lost ground to the Japanese imperial army [3 and 4].