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Infamy: The Shocking Story of the Japanese American Internment in World War II

Infamy: The Shocking Story of the Japanese American Internment in World War II

by Richard Reeves,
The San Francisco Chronicle, April 24, 2015

Following President Roosevelt’s Executive Order 9066, issued on Feb. 19, 1942, more than 120,000 Japanese — American citizens and noncitizens — living in California, Oregon and Washington were incarcerated by the War Relocation Administration in “camps” in other parts of the United States and Hawaii. Although no American of Japanese descent had been convicted of espionage or sabotage, the mass evacuation, a product of racism and public hysteria, was justified as a “military necessity.” “A Jap is a Jap. There is no way to determine their loyalty,” Lt. Gen. John DeWitt declared. “We can cover their legal situation … in spite of the Constitution,” Assistant Secretary of War John McCloy said in a memo. “The Constitution is just a scrap of paper to me.”

 

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