Saturday, February 23, 2008

The Japanese in WWII => The Moslems & Arab Americans now

I've long been wanting to post on this, but some scenes of anti-Japanese propaganda films shown on the History Chanel reminded me of it. And since Tess' head hurts too much to teach me more Spanish & mine too much to learn it, here it is.

The best way to describe how vile, racist, and hateful the propaganda against the Japanese during WWII was is to show you some, which I have been able to dig up. After watching these films and seeing these posters... ask yourself these questions
1) How does this remind you of what is said of Moslem and Arab Americans today?
(Hint to get you going...- "slanty eyed devils" <>"towel heads")
2) Why do we do this?
3) What can we do about it?

Be warned, this is pretty strong stuff... but then, so is a lot of what I hear on the street and see on [other] blogs about the M/A-Americans!

Posters found at

I think you get the idea. For more on how racist and vile our propaganda against our enemies has been, check out this blog:

Not that they were any nicer, but we pretend to be the land of the free... but Japanese Americans weren't very free during WWII, and one could well argue that those of the Moslem faith or of Middle Eastern Extraction (or anyone who searches for certain keywords online or books at the library) isn't so free today.


val said...

Racism is hateful, but in wartime (and I do NOT include the invasion of Iraq or Vietnam in that) people make propaganda films that turn their enemies into monsters. I haven't seen what Japanese propaganda films about the US and British citizens were like, but I can't imagine they were awarding us any prizes. My great uncle was imprisoned during WW1 as an enemy alien, and his 2 pre-teen sons were sent back to Germany on their own through war-torn Europe with labels round their necks. It's difficult for us to understand now, but it seemed logical to the people who did it.

I can't imagine the present-day anti-Arab racism ever seeming anything but the unjustifiable bile it is, though.

Boston_Betty said...

Rug, while I love the Japanese as a people, as well as the Germans, you can't deny that they did some pretty hideous shit in WWII. That being said, I don't think kindly of our firebombing of Dresden just a few months before Germany's unavoidable defeat and the strafing of German civilians by figter planes as they attempted to flee the ruined city!

War is a terrible business, but when nations foster the conditions under which radicalism flourishes and seaps out into the rest of the world as violence, then their peole have to expect blowback...I know we've got some coming our way eventually for the shit & blood storm we released in Iraq! The bigotries, intolerance, homopbobia, oppression of women, etc., in most Islamic countries tells me that it's a way of life I want to see contained...just like fundamentalist Christianity!

Right Mike said...

War is war and shit happens, you don't want our guys supporting the enemy and besides Hitler was completely evil and obsessed with the occult. I don't think propaganda against the Nazi's ever did any harm. What happened with the Japanese is a sad thing but what the Japanese did to their own people that were accused of helping Americans was even Worse. Gas Chambers for the whole lot. I don't believe America was doing that to all the Japanese Americans now.

The Rug Goth said...

Mike & BB, See latest post, I think there's a word which needs to be defined and understood.

Val- yeh, my Volk lived in VERY German communities in the US Midwest, they were under a lot of scrutiny, one in particular, Frankenmuth, which to this day is like a town plucked out of the foothills of Bavaria.

But I don't talk about that or complain about it because... the worst that happened to my families is they got to go defend their nation in the Pacific Theater (as my late father did) instead of in Europe, they weren't herded into concentration camps!

The Rug Goth said...

BB- no one with testicles is a more ardent feminist than I am, but I fear you are painting with an overly broad brush. As I previously pointed out, the most populace Muslim majority country in the world is Indonesia, and they are a relatively civil and open society.

Its the same logical error as making Christianity the problem, not bigoted demagogues who spew hate in its good name. Dobson doesn't represent me any more than UBL represents my Shiite friends from college, my Moslem convert female blog buddy, etc.

I am troubled and disheartened that the Islamic world doesn't seem to be doing more to contain this problem, but there's no more reason why Islamic countries and peoples should act that way than there is an innate reason why "Christian" Germans acted as they did.

The problem is HATE AND EVIL, not ethnicity, not to Whom you pray. No nationality nor faith has a monopoly on these, sad to say.

Boston_Betty said...

"...but I fear you are painting with an overly broad brush."

Perhaps, but I do believe that among Islamic cultures under Sharia, I only have shitty colors on the palette to work with.

The Rug Goth said...

That's getting more precise... but there's no more universal agreement in Islam about how to APPLY sharia than there is in Christendom for how to apply, say, the Decalogue.

Its true, a particularly misogynist and anti-modern version of it is in ascendancy in many places especially of the Middle East, but... to just speak of "Sharia" as if it were something as set and accepted as our constitution is for us is to overlook the differences between Sunni and Shiite and the many different ways Sharia has been applied through out the world and through out history.

Even were it so fixed and codified as our Constitution, look at the divide in our nation as to whether said document forbids or allows for... abortion, same sex marriage, etc.

I will never say a kind word for any person or culture which oppresses women, but... the situation among Moslems and in Islam is much more varied than it is usually made out to be.

Granted, they do the same overgeneralizing about us, but...

two wrongs don't make a right...
neither do three...
four makes it no better...
and by five you've made a right mess of things!

Boston_Betty said...

I don't have a problem with Islam--per say--because I don't live with it...thank Christ on a pogo stick! I resent it coming to places like England, Germany, Holland and even the United States and then its adherents complaining about us not being readily embracing of it. Likewise, I object to Christians going to developing countries and saying, "We'll build this well for you and give you a bowl of rice if you accept Jesus as your Personal Savior," too! Europe's just getting over its infection of Christianity (something we have yet to do here) so I'm a little less tolerant of people running away from their own countries where this shit is embraced like morning cereal and then complaining its not received with open arms by countries where women are allowed to drive, show their legs and actually date and marry outside of arranged deals. Sorry, Rug, but until Weesterners start flocking to Saudi Arabia and demand to be served alcoholic beverages in cafes, while men kiss women in the streets and start establishing churches of their choice freely, then I'm not embracing of Islam. Infact, I think all this religious hogwash needs to be tossed out of everyday life. Keep your churches, your synagogues, your mosques, your temples, etc. etc., etc., out of public life. I think it's time religion be treated as a pastime and not a way of life...for the betterment of us all and the survival of our planet!

The Rug Goth said...

BB- I couldn't agree more with your concluding statement:
Keep your churches, your synagogues, your mosques, your temples, etc. etc., etc., out of public life. I think it's time religion be treated as a pastime and not a way of life...for the betterment of us all and the survival of our planet!

I think I'll pick it up from there in a discrete post. Coming soon to a soapbox near you...