Japanese Internment Camps

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Social Studies
World War II

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Japanese Internment Camps

Japanese Internment Camps

"I fear all we have done is awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve," - Admiral Ismoro Yamamoto

Why is it important? The relocation of Japanese-Americans into camps during WWII was one of the most flagrant violations of civil liberties in American History.

What happened? Because of Pearl Harbor, over 127K Americans were imprisoned during WWII for being of Japanese ancestry. Those imprisoned were suspected of remaining loyal to Japan and were feared as a security risk.


How did the war affect your topic?A 1948 law provided for reimbursement for property losses by those interned. In 1988, Congress attempted to apologize for the action by awarding each surviving intern $20,000.

Why did it happen? The Roosevelt administration removed persons of Japanese ancestry from the West Coast by, a public fearing sabotage, politicians hoping to gain by standing against an unpopular group, and military authorities. Seventy-four days after Pearl Harbor, President Roosevelt signed an executive order that forced Japanese Americans to leave their homes. Thousands were forced to close businesses, abandon farms and homes, and move into remote internment camps, also called relocation centers.

Who was affected? Evacuation orders were posted in Japanese-American communities giving instructions on how to comply with with the executive order. Many families sold their homes, their stores, and most of their assets.Because of the mad rush to sell, properties and inventories were often sold at a fraction of their true value.


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