Introduction Paragraph and Japanese Paragraph: Sara
Conscription Paragraph: Tasha
Holocaust Paragraph and Conclusion Paragraph: Amy
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Violations of



Human Rights in



World War II





Access to Human Rights…….DENIED! In World War 2 Human Rights were being violated and completely disregarded all over the globe. The Japanese, the Jews, and the French-Canadians were only the beginning. The Japanese were sent to internment camps, the Jews were sent to concentration camps, and the French-Canadians were sent to war. Violations were everywhere.

On December 7th 1941 the Japanese bombed an American naval base that was stationed in Hawaii. On December 18th 1941 the Japanese invaded Hong Kong, there they killed or imprisoned almost all of the 2000 Canadian soldiers who had been stationed there. After those events, the racial views about the Japanese sky rocketed to unreasonable heights. Just two short months later in February of 1942 Japanese-Canadians were fired from their jobs and had their homes, businesses and possessions taken from them and were sent to internment camps. Before the Japanese-Canadians were sent to internment camps they were told to pack a single bag and were taken to holding areas where they were to wait for trains to take them, these waits were often months long. The Japanese had many rights taken away, the right to education, freedom of expression and freedom from inhumane treatment-to name a few- it was not an easy time for them. In early 1942 the Canadian government designated “protected areas”, Japanese were not aloud into these areas, and were given very strict curfews that were heavily enforced by the police. Due to internment camps entire Japanese families were separated, the men were sent to work and the women and children sent to ‘shanty towns’ situated in the BC wilderness. There their homes were made of thin, flimsy wood and were without roofs. In January 1943 the Canadian government allowed the possessions of the Japanese-Canadians that had been taken from them or that they had left behind, to be sold. Their lives had almost completely been abolished. During the war, 23 000 Japanese-Canadians were relocated, making the Japanese Internment the largest Canadian exodus ever. Once the war had finished the Canadian government gave the Japanese population a choice of deportation or living east of the Rockies, most chose the East. On April 1st 1949 the Japanese-Canadians that had stayed in Canada were given the right to live anywhere in the country, finally the Japanese Internment was over.

Mackenzie King made a promise to the citizens of Canada that there would be no conscription, but the speed at which the Nazis invaded Europe slowly became the issue Canadians needed to tend too. And though there was much pressure from groups such as the NRMA and the Conservatives to reintroduce it, the French Canadians of Quebec were still very opposed. In April of 1942, King asked the population not to support immediate conscription, but rather to allow the government to take back its promise made during the 1940 election. The statement, “Not necessarily conscription, but conscription if necessary”, quickly became King's famous remark, which truly reflected his ambiguous views of the situation. But when this plan proved to be useless, a voting campaign was set up and the results showed that English Canadian voters were 83% in favour as opposed to 72% of Quebec who voted against it. Anti-conscription groups were dispersed throughout the province, including one led by Henri Bourassa, the most vocal opponent of conscription in 1917. But even still, many Canadians did not support immediate conscription as there were a few riots in Montreal. Even though it was evident that there was much support for the abolishment of conscription in Quebec, it was still introduced and enforced. This immediate bound to the war field violated people's right to Liberty, Security of person and Life. Although there were high amounts of “Yes” votes, there was also a high percentage of “No” votes whose opposition did not matter; they were still sentenced to violence. Their freedom from torture or cruel and inhumane treatment & punishment rights could be whisked away from them without first having their consent. It is quite a violation of human rights to announce conscription against the will of a community.

If there was ever a time when human rights were completely disregarded, there was no worse time than the holocaust in WWII. Hitler wanted Germany closer together as a nation. To do so, he rallied them against the Jewish. The Nazi Party put together concentration camps around Europe. Hitler spread propaganda to make his followers believe Jewish people deserved to go to concentration camps. This was often the equivalent of sentencing them to death. These camps specialized in gassing, starvation, disease, torturing, burning, and ultimately killing their victims. These victims were Jews, Gypsies, Russian POWs, homosexuals, Communists, and Jehovah's witnesses. The disgusting cover name for this Anti-Semitic genocide was the "Final Solution". Unfortunately, the Nazis were quite successful in their "Final Solution" - they managed to slaughter 6,000,000 Jews. They killed approximately 10,000,000 people by the time they were finished.


There was obviously a shortage of human rights during the years of WWII - 1939-1945. Distribution of human rights gradually recovered years after WWII. Japanese internment camps were an all-time low for Canadians. Mere paranoia of the Japanese race led to harsh racism. French-Canadians were highly opposed to conscription, yet they were not given a choice whether to go to war or not. The holocaust showed what the human race is capable of. With the constant propaganda and the horrific concentration camps, Jewish people had no choice between life and death. Human rights have never been as violated as they were in WWII. It was a total world-wide learning experience.



Citations:
__Some information on the Holocaust---__http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holocaust
Notes taken in class, sheets given in class and the textbook.