Manage episode 374280019 series 1000193
After the attack on Pearl Harbor, over 125,000 Japanese Americans living in the continental United States were incarcerated in prison camps. The majority of these were born in America and US citizens. This was authorised by an Executive Order from President Roosevelt.
The Japanese Americans complied and spent years in the camps. Even though incarcerated, they remained loyal Americans. When the call came for volunteers for the Army first the 100th Infantry Battalion was formed and then the 442 Regimental Combat Team - in which thousands of Japanese Americans volunteered to serve. These two units were awarded over 4,000 Purple Hearts, and 21 men received the Medal of Honor.
In post-war America, the narrative of the treatment of Japanese Americans shifted. In 1988 President Ronald Reagan signed the Civil Liberties Act, which officially apologised for the incarceration on behalf of the U.S. government.
Joining me today is Mitchell Maki.
Mitchell is the President and CEO of the Go For Broke National Education Center, a non-profit organisation dedicated to preserving the legacy and lessons of the Nisei World War II veterans. And he is the author of Achieving the Impossible Dream: How Japanese Americans Obtained Redress.