for all its horror, World War 11 is recalled by many Americans as an almost magical time, when the nation united with single-minded purpose in a cause both desperate and just—a struggle, quite literally, of good against evil. Everyone pitched in to produce the materials of war, and women joined the work force in unprecedented numbers as the men were inducted into the armed forces.
Activity on the home front also had an ugly side. On February 19, 1942, responding to pressure from West Coast politicians, FDR signed Executive Order 9066. The order required all Japanese-Americans living within 200 miles of the Pacific shores—citizens and resident aliens alike—to report for relocation in internment camps located in California, Idaho, Utah, Arizona, Wyoming, Colorado, and Arkansas. Military officials feared sabotage, but non-Japanese farmers in the region feared competition even more and were eager to get rid of their Japanese-American neighbors.