Japanese Internment

Japanese Internment - US History 1900-45 Father Blantz The...

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US History 1900-45 Father Blantz The period of the Great Depression and the Second World War proved to be troubling times for the lives of many American citizens. However, the struggle of Asian Americans (specifically of Japanese descent) is often overlooked. In Home Front U . S . A . : America During World War II, by Allen M. Winkler, Winkler discusses the motives and actions behind the Justice Department’s decision to relocate. The racism and hatred toward Asian Americans started on the West Coast much before the dawn of World War II, but the attack of Pearl Harbor sent these boiling feelings over the edge. Winkler shows this hatred through quoting a “native son of the Golden West” stating “This is our time to get things done that we have been trying to get done for a quarter of a century” (Winkler 81). These anti-Japanese feelings only grew as the war went on. These attacks and beliefs were not just shaped by the common naïve citizen. Rather, this hatred also trickled down from government officials, as well as popular forms of media. Time and Life magazines both published articles on ways to tell the difference between Chinese and Japanese descents, encouraging negative treatment to those of Japanese descent. The pressure from these sources led to the government faced with a decision on how to act. In 1942, legislation was passed and 110,000 Japanese Americans were put into ten detention camps throughout seven western states (Winkler 82). Authorities were hopeful that these camps could provide a few things to these Japanese citizens. Hopes of limiting tension from the outside seemed to grow less and less unlikely as time went on. The hatred for the Japanese proved to be too much. Also, relocating them assured that no violence or American citizens would inflict direct
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discrimination on these people. Lastly, the government wanted to try and get rid of all suspicions that there were Japanese spies living in the United States, and by having them in a camp, they would be unsuccessful. The treatment the Japanese faced in these camps was terrible. The camps were
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This note was uploaded on 01/05/2012 for the course HIST 30608 taught by Professor Blantz during the Fall '11 term at Notre Dame.

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Japanese Internment - US History 1900-45 Father Blantz The...

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