Japanese Internment Japanese Internment During World

Document Sample
Japanese Internment Japanese Internment During World Powered By Docstoc
					Japanese Internment During World War II

  A Comparison of U.S. & Canadian
        Internment Policy
                    Historical Context
• Japanese immigration to the U.S. and Canada began in
  the 1860s and saw the greatest influx from 1900-1920
• U.S. Japanese immigrants settled in California,
  Washington, and Oregon. 90% in California. Most made
  their living in farming.
• 1941, approximately 110,000 Japanese nationals lived in
  the Pacific states and 150,000 lived in Hawaii. 62% were
  American citizens
• Canadian Japanese immigrants settled in British
  Colombia making their living in fishing.
• 1941, 22,000 Japanese nationals lived in British
  Colombia. Over 70% were Canadian citizens.
                     Racial Tension in the U.S.

• Prior to the attack on Pearl Harbor anti-Japanese (Chinese, Korean)
  sentiment grew as the immigrant population increased. For example:
• U.S., Asiatic Exclusion Leagues form to prevent Asians from joining
  labor unions.
• Webb-Haney Act (1913), state law denying "all aliens ineligible for
  citizenship" (i.e. all Asians except Filipinos) the right to own land in
• U.S. Supreme Court rules in Takeo Ozawa v. U.S. that
  naturalization is limited to "free white persons and aliens of African
  nativity,“ i.e. not Asians.
• Congress passes Cable Act (1922). “…any woman marrying an
  alien ineligible for citizenship shall cease to be an American citizen."
  Meaning that anyone marrying an Issei would automatically lose
  citizenship. Repealed in 1932.
• Congress passes Immigration Exclusion Act (1924), barring all
  immigration from Japan
Dr. Seuss
                     Racial Tension in Canada
• Canadian election of 1935 was marked by anti-Japanese smears,
  MP Halford Wilson recommended forcing Japanese into ghettos like
  German Jews.
• Some believed that Japanese rural and coastal patterns of
  settlement was proof that they were part of a Fifth Column of spies
  and saboteurs placed strategically to aid in a possible invasion.
• Provincial government of British Columbia began limiting the
  number of fishing licenses issued to Japanese
• Prime Minister McKenzie King did nothing to halt the rising
  discrimination. A clue to King‟s feelings toward Japanese is quoted
  in his diary:
   – "It is fortunate that the use of the bomb should have been upon the
     Japanese rather than upon the white races of Europe."
• Canadian Nisei were not allowed to vote in 1941
Internment in the U.S.

               Los Angeles, Santa Fe Station, 1942
                      Alien Registration in U.S.

• 1939–‟41 the FBI compiled the
  Custodial Detention index
  ("CDI") on citizens, "enemy"
  aliens and foreign nationals,
  based on census records, in
  the interest of national security.
• June 1940, Alien Registration
  Act passed. Loyalty
  regulations, Sect. 31 required
  the registration & fingerprinting
  of all aliens above the age of
  14, and Sect. 35 required
  aliens to report any change of
  address. Five million foreign
  nationals registered at post
  offices around the country
                     FBI Roundups
• December 7th, 1941, Pearl Harbor attacked
• Dec. 8th, Congress declares war on Japan. FBI arrests
  736 Japanese nationals as security risks
• Dec 11th, Congress declares war on Germany and Italy.
  2000 prominent Issei in Hawaii and are imprisoned by
  the U.S. government
                         Pre-9O66 Actions

• Lt. General John DeWitt, head
  of the Western Command,
  requested approval to conduct
  search and seizure operations
  to prevent alien Japanese from
  making radio transmissions to
  Japanese ships. DoJ required
  probable cause & warrants
  and the FBI dismissed Army
  (i.e. Dewitt's) alarm.
Lt. General John DeWitt
     • In congressional testimony, DeWitt
       “I don't want any of them [persons of
       Japanese ancestry] here. They are a
       dangerous element. There is no way to
       determine their loyalty... It makes no
       difference whether he is an American
       citizen, he is still a Japanese. American
       citizenship does not necessarily
       determine loyalty... But we must worry
       about the Japanese all the time until he
       is wiped off the map.”
     • DeWitt found common cause with Joint
       Immigration Committee of the California
       Legislature which sent a manifesto to
       newspapers summing up 'the charges
       against the Japanese,' who, „were
                        Executive Order 9O66
• Signed by FDR on Feb.19, 1942,
  allowed authorized military
  commanders to designate "military
  areas" at their discretion, as "exclusion
  zones", Exclusion was applicable to
  anyone that an military commander
  might choose, citizen or non-citizen
• March 1942, DeWitt issued Public
  Proclamation No.1, informing all those
  of Japanese ancestry that they would
  be subject to exclusion orders from
  "Military Area No. 1" (essentially, the
  entire Pacific coast to about 100 miles
  inland), and requiring anyone who had
  "enemy" ancestry to file a Change of
  Residence Notice if they planned to
U.S. Internment Camps
                         Post-9O66 Catch 22
March 1942:
• Executive Order 9095 created the Office of the Alien Property
  Custodian, giving it authority over all alien property. Assets were
  frozen, creating financial difficulty for the affected aliens, preventing
  most from moving out of the exclusion zones.
• Public Proclamation No.3 declares an 8 pm to 6 am curfew for "all
  enemy aliens and persons of Japanese ancestry" in military areas.
• DeWitt began to issue Civilian Exclusion Orders for specific areas
  within "Military Area No. 1."
• DeWitt's Proclamation No. 4 prohibited all those of Japanese
  ancestry from leaving "Military Area No. 1" for "any purpose until a
  future proclamation or order of this headquarters shall so permit."
May 1942:
• DeWitt issued Civilian Exclusion Order No. 346, ordering all
  people of Japanese ancestry, citizens or non-citizens, to report to
  assembly centers, where they would live until being moved to
  permanent "Relocation Centers."
                            FDR’s Decision
• In spite of he Ringle Report and FBI reports by J. Edgar Hoover that
  found no evidence of Japanese disloyalty, FDR issued 9066
  knowing that it would lead to internment. Why?
• In his book By Order of the President: FDR and the Internment of
  Japanese Americans, Prof. of History Greg Robinson argues
    – FDR had “unenlightened views of the Japanese” seeing them as
      Japanese first, then American & shared the anti-Japanese prejudices of
      his age and class.
    – FDR was content to leave the “Japanese question” to Lt. Gen. DeWitt
• In, Magic: The Untold Story of US Intelligence and the Evacuation of
  Japanese Residents From the West Coast During World War II,
  former Assistant Director of the NSA, David Lowman argues
    – FDR agreed to remove the Japanese from the Pacific Coast to avoid the
      possibility charging anyone with espionage because, an espionage trial
      would require that the government disclose evidence, i.e. that they
      intercepted and broken Japanese naval coded transmissions.
• Greed and Racism among California farmers
    – “White farmers can take over and produce everything the Jap grows.
      We don‟t want them back after the war either.” Austin Ansen, head of
      the Salinas Growers Association
    Internment in Canada

R.C.N. officer confiscating the boat of a Japanese-Canadian fishermen, 1942
                                               Confiscation of Vessels
                                                            • Within hours of the Pearl Harbor
                                                              attack, the Japanese also
                                                              invaded Hong Kong (part of the
                                                              British Commonwealth)
                                                            • Municipal governments &
                                                              newspapers in British Colombia
                                                              called for the internment
                                                            • In spite of Canadian military &
                                                              RCMP assurances to the
                                                              contrary, the public believed
                                                              fishermen were mapping the
                                                              coastline for Japanese Navy.
                                                            • Japanese fishing boats were
Boats corralled at mouth of the Fraser river                  first confined to port, &
                                                              eventually, the Canadian Navy
                                                              seized 1,200 vessels.
                     Internment of Japanese Men
• Jan.1942, a 100 mile exclusion
  zone was established along the
  B.C. coastline.
• All men of Japanese descent
  ages 18-45 were removed from
  the zone and taken to road
  camps in the British Columbian
  interior, to sugar beet projects
  on the Prairies, or to internment
  in a POW camp in Ontario.
• The camp at Tashme was
  notorious for harsh conditions.
• Canadian Pacific Railroad &
  other business fired Japanese
• The Canadian government
  spent 1/3 per capita on
  interness than the U.S.
War Measures Act ‘42
      • February 24, 1942 an Order-in-
        Council passed under the War
        Measures Act giving the federal
        government the power to intern all
        "persons of Japanese racial origin."
      • Ten camps were established, only
        four “relocations centers”
        accommodated families
      • Under Canadian "Custodian of
        Aliens" the government sold the
        possessions of Japanese Canadians
        without the owners' permission.
        Auctioned off items, ranging from
        farm land, houses possessions sold
        at prices below market value. Funds
        raised went towards the fees of
        realtors and auctioneers, and
        storage/handling charges, and
        Japanese owners rarely received
        much income from the sales.
Canadian Internment Camps
                              King’s Decision
• In spite of he RCMP assurances that there was no evidence of
  Japanese disloyalty or Fifth Column activity, King made no attempt to
  stop relocation via the War Measures Act. Why?
• In her book, The Politics of Racism: The Uprooting of Japanese
  Canadians During World War Two, Ann Sunahara describes Prime
  Minister King
   – King was an astute politician who often changed positions to suit popular
     opinion. Thus he was swayed by the unfounded paranoia from B.C. &
     the racism of west coast politicians like MP Ian MacKenzie.
   – In a quote to Vancouver Sun MacKenzie declared
     "It is the government‟s plan to get these people out of B.C. as fast as
     possible. It is my personal intention, as long as I remain in public life, to
     see they never come back here. Let our slogan be for British Columbia:
     „No Japs from the Rockies to the seas.”
• Canadians benefited financially buying confiscated property
Life in the Camps

               WRA Relocation Center Manzanar, California
                             U.S. Facilities
• War Relocation Authority (WRA) directed by Milton Eisenhower
  managed the „Relocation Centers‟ not the same as internment camp.
  Largest at Tule Lake, California held over 18,000. The most distant
  facilities were in Rohwer & Jerome Arkansas
• April ‟42, Wartime Civilian Control Agency (WCCA) was established
  by the military to coordinate the evacuation to inland relocation
  centers. Japanese Americans were held in temporary „assembly
  centers‟ awaiting completion of the Relocation centers.
• The Department of Justice operated „internment camps (aka
  detention centers‟) which held those suspected of Japanese
  sympathies, causing trouble at relocation centers, or Japanese
  nationals rounded up and turned over to the U.S. by governments in
  Latin America (ex. Peru, Bolivia and Guatemala)
   – DOJ and INS also operated camps (ex. Crystal City, Texas) to hold
     Germans deported from Latin American countries
                          U.S. Facilities

• Eventually 120,000 Japanese were settled into 10 War Relocation
  Centers. 2/3 were American citizens. In the largest forced
  migration in U.S. history
• Internees were housed in "tar paper-covered barracks of simple
  frame construction without plumbing or cooking facilities of any
  kind. Facilities met the requirements of Geneva Convention for
• Based on designs for military barracks, most of the buildings were
  poorly equipped for cramped family living.
• Heart Mountain War Relocation Center in Wyoming (above) was a
  barbed-wire-surrounded enclave with unpartitioned toilets, cots for
  beds, and a budget of 45 cents daily per capita for food rations.
U.S. Facilities
        • Armed guards were posted at
          the camps, which were all in
          remote, desolate areas far
          from population centers.
        • Internees were typically
          allowed to stay with their
          families, and were treated well
          unless they violated the rules.
        • Some camp commanders were
          very lenient with security
        • Nearly 1/4 of the internees left
          the camps to live and work
          elsewhere in the U.S., outside
          the exclusion zone. Some
          were allowed to return to their
          hometowns in the exclusion
          zone under supervision of a
          sponsoring American family.
                          U.S. Facilities
• The phrase shikita ga nai (translated as "it cannot be helped") was
  commonly used to summarize the interned families' resignation to their
  current condition. Most internees cooperated to prove loyalty to the
• Internees were encouraged to form civic organizations within the
  camps and given responsibility to manage their communities.
• Activties like baseball leagues, traditional holiday celebrations like
  Shogatsu (New Year) were allowed in most of the camps that housed
                                                         Camp Manzanar California

Shared By: