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The Internment of

the Japanese
Americans
Presented by A. Z.
Purpose for Research
What happened in the internment camps
where the Japanese of America were sent?
Why were they relocated in the first place?
Events Leading to Internment
The Japanese and Japanese-American were
sent to internment camps after the Japanese
attacked Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.
America feared Japan at the time, leading
them to believe that all the Japanese were
spies for Japan and the Axis Powers.
Opposition of the Relocation for
American Japanese
The Japanese Americans showed that they were
true patriots by joining up and reciting the Pledge
of Allegiance and singing patriotic songs such as
The Star-Spangled Banner.
Various people were apt to aid the Japanese who
lived in America, such as J. Edgar Hoover, an FBI
Director, and Franklin Roosevelts own wife,
Eleanor Roosevelt, who was unsuccessful in
privately persuading him not to sign it.
Order and Signing for Interment
of Japanese Americans
Roosevelt stood his ground and went on to sign
the order that would imprison many Americans of
Japanese ancestry.
The signing of Executive Order 9066 by President
Franklin D. Roosevelt on February 19, 1942
forced all Japanese ethnic groups to internment
camps by use of his Commander-In-Chief war
powers.
The order led approximately 120,000 ethnic
Japanese peoples and Americans with Japanese
relatives to be sent to internment camps.
People Sent to Internment Camps
62% of the people relocated were Nisei,
American-born with Japanese heritage, and
Sansei, the children of the Nisei. They were
American citizens. The rest (38%) were
Issei, the Japanese-born immigrants.
Most of the relocated peoples were of the
West Coast, due to the location of the Pearl
Harbor attack.
Condition of the Internment
Camps
The 1943 War Relocation Authority reported the
internees were housed in tar paper-covered
barracks of simple frame construction without
plumbing or cooking facilities of any kind.
The facilities met international laws, but were still
cramped and poorly equipped.
They were built in desolate areas with severe,
harsh weather conditions.
Life in Internment Camps
The internees, the Japanese and their heirs,
were allowed to stay with their families and
were treated well by guards save they
violated rules.
Because they came from the West Coast,
most of the internees did not have clothes
adequately warm enough for Wyomings
cold weather.
Life in Internment Camps Cont.
There was only a budget of 45 cents daily
per capita for food rations, giving the
internees little food.
Manzanar, the most widely known camp,
northeast of Los Angeles, California, had
the worst weather; cold temperatures and
harsh, frequent dust storms.
How the Internment was Viewed
Ones who were for the internment simply
called internees residents, but Roosevelt
privately referred the camps as
concentration camps.
Many who were against the internment
called it prejudice and called them
concentration camps publicly against the
War Relocation Authority.
Internment Ends
The Supreme Court ruled the imprisonment of
loyal citizens unconstitutional in December 1944.
The ruling led to the government bringing
individuals back to the West Coast on early 1945.
The Japanese Americans were given $25 and a
free ticket ride back to their homes.
Some migrated back to Japan, but most stayed to
rebuild their lives.
Aftermath and Compensation of
Internment
Although compensation was paid for property losses,
the ex-internees were still not able to fully recover
their losses.
Young Americans started the Redress Movement in
1960 for an apology.
In 1988, President Ronald Regan signed a legislation
which apologized for the internment on behalf of the
U.S. Government.
The Manzanar Camp was reformed into a National
Historic Site to provide for the protection and
interpretation of historic, cultural, and natural
resources associated with the relocation of Japanese
Americans during World War II.
Reflection
I too believe that the internment was
prejudice and unfair. I am glad,
however, that they were apologized for
and after learning more about this, I
hope nothing more like it will happen
again.