WWII Experience - World War II Veterans

In 1942, a small number of Japanese Canadians were already in the Canadian army fighting for freedom while their families back in Canada were losing their basic rights. Japanese Canadians in B.C. who tried to enlist after war began were denied the right to join the army. The B.C. Premier of that time vehemently opposed the enlistment of Asians. Only in January 1945, after the British government asked Japanese Canadians to join the British army as interpreters did the Canadian government allow them to enlist.

Canadian nisei in India, 1945. They served in the Far East attached to British units as interpreters and translators. About 200 nisei joined during World War II. (photo: Ray Takeuchi, Toronto)

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