Mass Hysteria in America After the Pearl Harbor Attack During World War II

November 3, 2020 by Essay Writer

On December 7, 1941 the naval base Pearl Harbor was attacked by Japan. The bombing resulted in the destruction of 8 battleships and over 200 aircraft. About 2,000 people lost their lives and another thousand were wounded. After the attack, President Roosevelt declared war on Japan. People all around the United States persecuted any person of Japanese descent because they were believed to have aided and sympathized Japan. These assumptions may seem ridiculous to believe now but after the attack people were afraid and concerned and these assumptions and rumors were everywhere. Two months after the attack the President gave an executive order that all Japanese Americans must evacuate their homes and be relocated as a matter of national security. They all had to meet at a train station to be sent to one of the ten internment camps. The camps were located in California, Utah, Arizona, Idaho, Wyoming, Arkansas, and Colorado. Each camp held about 10,000 people who were considered to be prisoners. The camps were surrounded by barbed wire and guard towers and they were usually located in the middle of the desert. The barracks where the prisoners had to sleep was very crowded and the rations of food weren’t very great. The camps were under very strict rules. There were curfews at night and most prisoners had a job and had to keep the camp clean. The treatment was very unfair especially because these people didn’t deserve it. They were stripped of all their rights and freedom because people were paranoid about them attacking America. All of the hatred and anger Americans had after the attack was directed towards Japanese Americans because they looked like the enemy. The sad thing is 70% of the 120,000 people in the internment camps were born citizens in the U.S. and they were treated like enemies and prisoners of war. No one even tried to defend them, most people would financially benefit from

President Roosevelt’s order and they felt more safe so there was no reason for people to go against authority if it didn’t affect them in a negative way. Most people just let this happen and didn’t give it another thought. These internment camps were around for the rest of the war. The government then released all prisoners to go back to their homes and live as before. Many of the people went back to their homes and found it in ruins. The government also admitted their mistakes and gave any prisoner money to go and live their lives again. The damage was already done and 3 to 4 years of their lives could not be returned.

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