General John DeWitt: The Scapegoat

Steven Arango, Newberry College

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Introduction: During World War II one of the most atrocious events in United States history happened. This was the internment of the Japanese people on the West Coast of the U.S. Over 110,000 Japanese and Japanese-Americans were interned in camps all over America for several years during the War due to the suspicion of the U.S. Government of these people. After the war was over someone had to take responsibility for this repulsive act and that someone was General John DeWitt, the commander of the Western Defense Command for the United States Army. Obviously, there was more than one person involved in this situation but General DeWitt has always been looked upon as the man who orchestrated the internment. Drawing from scholarly research I have come to the conclusion that General DeWitt was merely an officer following orders and a puppet for Lt. Colonel Karl R. Bendetsen and several other key members close to the President.

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