10 years ago1.2K views
This controversial film attempts to defend the highly unconstitutional actions of the United States War Relocation Authority during World War II. Milton S. Eisenhower, director of the WRA, narrates the story of how 100,000 Japanese people, two thirds of them American citizens, were forced into internment camps in order to prevent espionage during the war. Falsely, the film presents the Japanese as willing and happy to sacrifice for the war effort, "Japanese themselves cheerfully handled the enormous paperwork involved.” The forcible auctioning of their personal property, including houses, businesses, family valuables, and vehicles, is whitewashed as well, with the narrator saying relocation “often involved financial sacrifice for the evacuees," who "cooperated wholeheartedly.” Instead of camps, the film refers to “assembly centers” located in race tracks, fair grounds, and other public areas. The camps are shown in some detail, including the medical facilities, Americanization classes, cafeteria, irrigation projects, and field work in sugar beet farms. In all, this is a fascinating, but sad look at a dark time in our nation’s history.