"Air raid, Pearl Harbor - this is no drill."
-Radio alert 7:58 AM, 7 December 1941
World War II began on September 1, 1939. U.S. entered the war when Japan attacked Pearl Harbor, territory of Hawaii, on December 7, 1941. President Franklin D. Roosevelt called it “a date that will live in infamy” and declared war against Japan on December 8, 1941. The allied forces held high-level conferences to finalize the strategy to defeat Japan. Admiral Earnest J. King suggested a naval campaign across the central Pacific with the Mariana Islands as the main target and it was code named "Operation Forager".
Saipan was part of the Mariana Islands and was closer to the Japanese Empire than any other island. Saipan had many strategically important places like Aslito Airfield and a very good harbor, Tanapag which were used as a stopover and refueling stations. Saipan was an important supply base and communication center. The capture of Saipan would cut off any Japanese forces south of Saipan from the Japanese mainland itself. More importantly, it would allow the U.S. to build runways big enough for its B-29 Superfortress Bombers to reach the Japanese homeland and return to their base in Saipan.