Pearl Harbor Essay

1465 words - 6 pages

Pearl Harbor

During the early 1940’s, World War II was upon the United States of America. After the attack on Pearl Harbor, the U.S. was ready to go to war with The Empire of Japan. During this time, many U.S. citizens grew great hatred toward anyone of Japanese ancestry. People began to become paranoid and treated any Japanese person with great disrespect. All of this started with the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. After the attack, many Japanese people were sent to concentration camps. Many of them were either put in jail because of their race, or just because they refused to go to the concentration camps. This also happened in David Guterson’s fiction book, Snow Falling on Cedars. After the attack on Pearl Harbor, Japanese citizens were looked upon as traders, taken to concentration camps, and many were accused of crimes that they did not commit.

Pearl Harbor is on the island of O’ahu in Hawaii. At approximately 8:00 A.M., on December 7, 1941, the Empire of Japan attacked the United States of America. Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto orchestrated this surprise attack. Three hundred and fifty-three Japanese aircraft attacked Pearl Harbor, led by Commander Mitsuo Fuchida. (Pearl Harbor Remembered) Before this, no formal declaration of war had been announced. Nearly 100 U.S. ships were in the harbor the morning of the attack consisting of battleships, destroyers, cruisers, and other support ships. (Pearl Harbor Remembered) Fortunately, over half the U.S. Pacific fleet was out to sea. During the same time, the Japanese also attacked Hickam Field. Eighteen Army Aircraft were destroyed or damaged as they set on the runways. (Pearl Harbor Remembered) These aircraft included bombers, fighter planes, and attack bomber planes. Because of the attack on Pearl Harbor, great hatred between American citizens and the Japanese began. During the 1940’s and 1950’s, the U.S. opinion on Japanese people changed. Years of anti-Japanese discrimination swept across the nation. (America’s Concentration Camps) Every Japanese citizen was looked upon as someone who was capable of sabotage, and many people thought the Japanese were spies. They were not to be trusted. (America’s Concentration Camps)

After the attack on Pearl Harbor, all Japanese residents in Hawaii were rounded up and interrogated. On February 19, 1942, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066. (America’s Concentration Camps) This called for the eviction and internment of all Japanese Americans. The evacuation began in April 1942. There were different types of facilities created for different purposes. Three of these were assembly centers, relocation centers, and internment camps. (America’s Concentration Camps) The War Relocation Authority was established to run these camps. During the first phase of relocation, Japanese citizens were transported on trains and buses under military guard to different assembly centers. “Twelve of these were in...

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