US Supreme Court FINALLY overrules "Korematsu"

Apr 2017
298
United Kingdom
#1
In the course of upholding President Trump's "Muslim travel ban", the US Supreme Court finally OVERRULED the infamous Korematsu decision( so named for its primary plaintiff, Japanese American Fred Korematsu, who challenged the decision of then-President Franklin D.Roosevelt to forcibly remove the Japanese American community en mass to so-called "relocation camps) made in 1944 despite a total absence of credible evidence indicating disloyalty to the US and the Allied cause on the part of said ethnic community.

Even at the time, critics such as the then Justice Frank Murphy in his dissent noted that FDR's decision was rooted more in wartime hysteria and racial prejudice than any objective reasoning of the facts(such as the demonstratable bravery of the "Nisei" battalions of the US Army- who received so many decorations for gallantry that they were dubbed by wags"the Christmas tree regiment"! Why was this NOT done to German and Italian Americans(despite the activities of the German American Bund) - indeed at least TWO prominent Allied commanders were known to be of German background( Chester W.Nimitz, Pacific Theatre Commander, US Navy, and Dwight David "Ike" Eisenhower, US Army and Supreme Allied Commander).
All I can say is: good riddance to "Korematsu"!


Anybody else think as I do?


Terry
 
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GogLais

Ad Honorem
Sep 2013
4,642
Wirral
#2
I’m sure racism came into it, in fact it would be remarkable if it hadn’t. The only thing I can think of as any defence is that the Japanese carried out Pearl Harbo(u)r, the Germans and Italians didn’t. Edit - I hadn’t realised it was as late as 1944, which rather weakens my defence. Edit edit - the SC case was 1944, the exclusions started in early 1942.
 
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Recusant

Ad Honorem
Sep 2009
2,586
Sector N after curfew
#3
. . . Anybody else think as I do?
The ruling used double-talk in an attempt to distance itself from the fact that it essentially reaffirmed the principle behind Korematsu: The executive may invoke national security, however speciously, to justify actions that are counter to the principles on which the US was supposedly founded. The eloquent dissenting opinion written by Justice Sotomayor gives the lie to this hollow repudiation of Korematsu.

Today, the Court takes the important step of finally overruling Korematsu, denouncing it as “gravely wrong the day it was decided.” Ante, at 38 (citing Korematsu, 323 U. S., at 248 (Jackson, J., dissenting)). This formal repudiation of a shameful precedent is laudable and long overdue. But it does not make the majority’s decision here acceptable or right. By blindly accepting the Government’s misguided invitation to sanction a discriminatory policy motivated by animosity toward a disfavored group, all in the name of a superficial claim of national security, the Court redeploys the same dangerous logic underlying Korematsu and merely replaces one “gravely wrong” decision with another.
 
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Apr 2017
298
United Kingdom
#4
I might make the point that Americans were far more trusting of their government during WWII(and during the Cold War) back in the 1940s than they are nowadays- this was before the Kennedy assassination, the Vietnam War and finally Watergate. Much like "Buck v Bell" or "Plessy v. Ferguson" "US v Korematsu" is so morally reprehensible and so manifestly rooted in racism that few legal scholars(even the most conservative ones) defend it nowadays!
 

Bart Dale

Ad Honorem
Dec 2009
6,469
#5
In the course of upholding President Trump's "Muslim travel ban", the US Supreme Court finally OVERRULED the infamous Korematsu decision( so named for its primary plaintiff, Japanese American Fred Korematsu, who challenged the decision of then-President Franklin D.Roosevelt to forcibly remove the Japanese American community en mass to so-called "relocation camps) made in 1944 despite a total absence of credible evidence indicating disloyalty to the US and the Allied cause on the part of said ethnic community.

Even at the time, critics such as the then Justice Frank Murphy in his dissent noted that FDR's decision was rooted more in wartime hysteria and racial prejudice than any objective reasoning of the facts(such as the demonstratable bravery of the "Nisei" battalions of the US Army- who received so many decorations for gallantry that they were dubbed by wags"the Christmas tree regiment"! Why was this NOT done to German and Italian Americans(despite the activities of the German American Bund) - indeed at least TWO prominent Allied commanders were known to be of German background( Chester W.Nimitz, Pacific Theatre Commander, US Navy, and Dwight David "Ike" Eisenhower, US Army and Supreme Allied Commander).
All I can say is: good riddance to "Korematsu"!


Anybody else think as I do?


Terry

The comparison between the Germans and Japanese in WW2 is an invalid one, and there were many differences between the 2 groups.

1. The Germans had proven their loyalty to the US in WW1 in fighting against Germany, while the Japanese had not. Even in WW2, the Japanese did not actually prove their loyalty to the US in the same way, since Japanese Americans never fought against Japanese troops.

2. The German had been living in the US for centuries longer than the Japanese. Germans had been in the US since colonial times, and fought in a number of US wars, the Civil War, WW1, etc. Sending Germans to camps like the Japanese raised the question of how far back
to go with Germans, you could include German Americans like Eisenhower. Plus Germans were a much larger fraction of US population. Sending Germans to camps would not be practical.

In contrast, the Japanese were much more recent immigrants, for the most part going back only a couple generations, And while the most recent German immigrants were refugees from the German government, and so had no love for the German government, the Japanese inmigrated for economic reasons, and did not have anything against the Japanese government for the most part.


3. The Japanese were concentrated in areas of likely Japanese invasion, and the Japanese had a navy that could reach California, whereas the Germans navy presented no sucn threat. Japanese commandos could be landed in the wilderness area of the west coast, where they could cause problems, and local Japanese might give aid to these commandos. That risk did not exist with the Germans, the German Navy could not land substantial numbers of troops nor are their large wilderness areas along the East coast comparable to the West Coast where German soldiers could hide out. And the concentration of Germans did not lend themselves to the same scenario as the Japanese, the Germans mostly not living near the sea shore - Germans living in Wisconsin are not as much of a risk than Japanese living in California.

Even if the S Japanese did not activelh aid Japanese infiltrators, they provided a population that Japanese saboteurs could blend in, making them more effective. The stretches of wilderness alog the western coast of the US, and the much larger Japanese navy meant the Japanese could have landed much larger numbers of soldiers, saboteurs that could nave done serious damage to the US war effort, a much greater threat than the Germans ever were.


4. While Gernmans were not sent to camps, there were restrictions placed on non US citizens, them, like banning them having radios. And what is often ignored is that the restrictions on the Japanese were on for those Japanese living on tne West coast, no such restrictions were place on Japanese living on tne East coast.

5. The Japanese launched a sneak attack, demonstrating they were not to be trusted. The Germans declared war on thenUS formerly, they did not attack the US first, despite the fact that the US had been giving all kinds of military aid to fight against them long before Germany declared war. All the US did ro Japan was to embargo material they could get else where. (There were the Flying Tigers, but that officially wasn't the US government, unlike the lend lease supplies given to Britain,)

While in hind sight, the fears of US leaders were unfounded, the situations of the Germans and Japanese were mucn different, a fact overlooked. WW2 was a life and death struggle for the US, and the US leaders erred on the side of caution. If a Japanese fleet could sail to Hawaii, no reason it couldn't sail on to North America if they had chosen. The Japanese did capture American islands off the coast of North America after all.
 
Apr 2017
298
United Kingdom
#6
So "Korematsu" was right all along? No, I don't think so(and neither did most perceptive observers AT THE TIME). I might make the point that "Nisei"( second generation Japanese American US troops) fought bravely against German and Italian forces and if asked to do so would have done so against their compatriots( so noted was the Nisei for bravery that wags in the US Army called them "the Christmas tree regiment" due to the amount of decorations their members had received) in the Japanese Imperial Army.
As for security considerations , why was the much larger Japanese American community of Hawaii left unmolested by US authorities???


Terry
 

Bart Dale

Ad Honorem
Dec 2009
6,469
#7
So "Korematsu" was right all along? No, I don't think so(and neither did most perceptive observers AT THE TIME). I might make the point that "Nisei"( second generation Japanese American US troops) fought bravely against German and Italian forces and if asked to do so would have done so against their compatriots( so noted was the Nisei for bravery that wags in the US Army called them "the Christmas tree regiment" due to the amount of decorations their members had received) in the Japanese Imperial Army.
As for security considerations , why was the much larger Japanese American community of Hawaii left unmolested by US authorities???


Terry
I agree, they made the wrong call, but hindsight is always 20/20. I can't help but think that it was because F;ranklin and leaders in the east had little first had experience with the Japanese community, and if they had, then they would have reacted differently. Japanese in Hawaii were unmolested largely because the US officials in Hawaii had much more experience, and because the potential scenarios I outlined were not likely. It would have been much more difficult to land secret commando troops in Hawaii than on the mainland, where you have the entire west coast available to land. And while there are wilderness areasin the Hawaii, they are not in an area that you could use as a launching base for attacks.

I just wanted to point out that those who blame the actions soley on racism ignore, such as if racism was the sole reason, then it should have effected the Japanese living in the East coast, but didn't, and there were major differences between situation of the Germans and Japanese. However, simply because I understand their reasoning doesn't make it right or I agree with them.. There were others who spoke out that it was a bad decissio at the time, but the leaders erred on what they felt was the side of caution, Their actions were wrong, and in the future maybe we can learn from them, but I feel we are still doing it, by keeping suspected terrorist confined without charges. I feel that in the future all Americans and all future historians will condemn the actios at Guantanamo Bay as thoroughly as we do those of the confinement of the Japanese American citizens. I feel the way we keep suspected terrorist in Guantanamo and other places is as wrong as what we did to out citizens.

Yes, the Japanese were very good at fighting against others, but that doesn't necessarily mean they would do the same knowing they would be fighting against uncles and first cousins. However, you are correct there is not the slightest evidence the Japanese Americans wouldn't have fougnt as bravely against Japan, and I agree we are completely unjustified to cast aspersions on tne brave Japanese American soldiers without any evidence.
 
Oct 2015
179
Singapore
#8
3. The Japanese were concentrated in areas of likely Japanese invasion, and the Japanese had a navy that could reach California, whereas the Germans navy presented no such threat. Japanese commandos could be landed in the wilderness area of the west coast, where they could cause problems, and local Japanese might give aid to these commandos. That risk did not exist with the Germans, the German Navy could not land substantial numbers of troops nor are their large wilderness areas along the East coast comparable to the West Coast where German soldiers could hide out. And the concentration of Germans did not lend themselves to the same scenario as the Japanese, the Germans mostly not living near the sea shore - Germans living in Wisconsin are not as much of a risk than Japanese living in California.
There is a thread in Speculative History that proved without a doubt the impossibility of Japan invading the US, even with the help of alien space bats.
 

Bart Dale

Ad Honorem
Dec 2009
6,469
#9
There is a thread in Speculative History that proved without a doubt the impossibility of Japan invading the US, even with the help of alien space bats.
If you mean a full scale invasion, no. But I am thinking of landing a commado like force landed in some wilderness area, say a 1000 or even a hundred could do a lot of damage, blow up bridges, roads, and Japanese had large submarines that they used to supply trapped troops on islands that they could have used to land supplies and troops.

Anyways, it could still have been a fear of the American leaders regardless of how feasible it was in reality.
 
Oct 2015
179
Singapore
#10
If you mean a full scale invasion, no. But I am thinking of landing a commando like force landed in some wilderness area, say a 1000 or even a hundred could do a lot of damage, blow up bridges, roads, and Japanese had large submarines that they used to supply trapped troops on islands that they could have used to land supplies and troops.

Anyways, it could still have been a fear of the American leaders regardless of how feasible it was in reality.
Read the thread, it proved the only invasion of American territory the Japanese could have carried out was the US embassy in Tokyo. But yeah, that's with 20/20 hindsight.
http://historum.com/speculative-his...anity-china-goes-jogular-rich-weak-ameri.html
 

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