Retribution by Max Hastings
Never really prepared for war, America has always hated the thought of going to war, even in the outraged enthusiasm for vengeance following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. By contrast, imperial Japan had only contempt for Americans as a nation of shopkeepers concerned principally with their material comforts, lacking the will for a decisive fight, and displaying an unseemly fear of violent death—though the Japanese measured our weakness not against traditional Western models but against the honor of the samurai warrior.
About the Author
Algis Valiunas writes on culture and politics for COMMENTARY and other magazines. His "Goethe’s Magnificent Self" appeared in January.