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10/19 blog post

I never knew that when Roosevelt went into the war it was for any reason other than human rights, the narrative that is told throughout grade school and high school. In some way, I guess this makes sense because, at the same time as we were fighting in the war, the US had Japanese internment camps, which were committing acts that violate human rights. This can also be seen in the fact that the US only entered the war after the bombing of Pearl Harbor when they felt threatened. The US The United States classifies this as a “mistake” but considering how we condemn Hitler’s concentration camps, the term “mistake” seems a little light to me.

Another thing that struck me was how Zinn talked about the bombings in Japan. Previous to this I had no idea that the suggestion of warning the civilians was made and ignored and also that the United States had intel that Japan was considering Peace allegations. The whole narrative I was told was that Japan would not surrender which is why the US was forced to drop two bombs and end the war. The US used the bombings to assert its military dominance and power and came out of the war as one of the most powerful countries in the war with the Soviet Union.

The hidden motives of the war were shocking to me. It made me question if the United States would have gotten involved in the war if Pearl Harbor had not happened? Would we have let the genocide continue because entering did nothing for us?

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  1. Henry Groves Henry Groves

    I too never thought about US involvement in the war to be anything besides a fight for human rights. I never pieced together that the Japanese internment camps were taking those same human rights from people that we were told that the United States was fighting for.

  2. Olivia Cosco Olivia Cosco

    I agree with you that I didn’t know all of that about the US involvement in the war. I think you bring up a very interesting question at the end of your response. I never really thought about whether we would have been involved if Pearl Harbor didn’t happen.

  3. Sofia Adams Sofia Adams

    I also had believed that the US had entered the war due to Human rights and that Pearl Harbor was just the last straw for the US. This shows how in history things can be twisted so easily to create Patriotism. It makes me wonder if intentions just as important or more important than actions, results, and consequences?

  4. Mia Slaunwhite Mia Slaunwhite

    The things I was taught about WWII and Japan were that Japan bombed Pearl Harbor and then we entered the war. The idea that the United States bombed the Japanese internment camps… I don’t ever remember being told that was the reason why we bombed Japan. It is crazy how skewed history is that is being taught.

  5. Elina Bhagwat Elina Bhagwat

    This idea of the US wanting to assert military dominance is so evident after reading Zinn’s chapter. Also, thinking about the US’s history of war and military intervention it seems as though we are constantly at war, and this must be an effect of the United States’ need to be dominant and assert power in international affairs.

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