the most part the local Japanese are loyal to the United States or, at worst, hope that by remaining
quiet they can avoid concentration camps or irresponsible mobs” (Song, Min, and Jean 91).
Following the Pearl Harbor attack and the rise of prejudice towards the Japanese
Americans, the president and his cabinet discussed a policy of removal regarding the population
of Japanese Americans. The then secretary of war, henry Stimson, and Secretary if Navy, Frank
Knox, favored the removal policy, while Attorney General Francis Biddle did not support it as he
felt it violated the constitutional rights of individuals. The president accepted the policy of removal
and on February 19, 1942, he issues Executive Order 9066, which saw relocation and internment
camps created for Japanese Americans.
Deportations started on the 25
of February when the United States Navy ordered that
Japanese Americans vacate terminal Island within a time frame of 48 hours. In March the same
year, the Wartime Civil Control Administration asked all Japanese Americans in Oregon, the D.C.
area, Arizona, and California to show up in 16 concentration centers. They were to brig only what
could be carried in their hands, usually a suitcase. The largest detention center hosted 18,000
people, it was in the Santa Anita Race Track. Here, the people moved into stalls for horses. The
Japanese Americans in the assembly centers were under the War Relocation Authority. This had
been established solely for this purpose. The WRA completed the construction of ten relocation
camps in May 1942 in Arizona, Colorado, Arkansas, Wyoming, Utah, California, and Idaho. It
started transferring Japanese Americans to these camps from the assembly centers.
Although the camps were called relocation camps by the United States government, the
camps that had been newly built had barbed wire, military barracks, search lights and guard towers.
Everett Rogers and Nancy Barlit write that "this terminology implied that the Japanese Americans
were simply being relocated from the West Coast to other parts of the country. This euphemistic