jose v asked in Arts & HumanitiesHistory · 1 decade ago

how were african americans in world war 2 treated?

5 Answers

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer


    The ARMY took in most of the black military personnel. It was estimated that three fourths of the Blacks served in the ARMY. It is worth noting here that freedom to serve the country did not mean freedom to participate fully. Black soldiers were still in SEGREGATED UNITS within the ARMY. Most black soldiers acted as combat support groups or as labor battalions. The all black 92ND DIVISION and the 761ST TANK BATTALION were among the few exceptional Divisions to participate in full combat during World War II. Over 12,000 decorations and citations were awarded to the 92nd Division, and the 761st received the Presidential Unit Citation "for extraordinary heroism in military operations against an armed enemy."


    The NAVY became more restricted in its assignments to Blacks during World War II. Most black Navy men were limited to tours of duty on shore or around small coastal harbors. By 1943, two segregated units, the USS MASON and the Submarine Chaser, the PC 1264, were granted full sailing duties. Over 150,000 Blacks served in the NAVY during World War II. The first black Naval Officer was assigned to an all black crew on the Submarine Chaser in 1943.


    In the 1940's, it was still believed that Blacks were incapable of flying aircraft. This myth was dispelled with the help of the U. S. Congress. On June 27, 1939 - THE CIVILIAN PILOT TRAINING ACT was passed. This solidary ACT helped to create a reserve of civilian pilots to be called in case of War. Young black pilots were given the opportunity to train with U. S. approved programs located at TUSKEGEE INSTITUTE, HOWARD UNIVERSITY, HAMPTON INSTITUTE, NORTH CAROLINA AandT, DELAWARE STATE, WEST VIRGINIA STATE, LINCOLN UNIVERSITY of Missouri, and HARLEM AIRPORT in Chicago. The SELECTIVE SERVICE ACT OF 1940 also increased the opportunity for a broader participation of Blacks in the military when it banned discrimination in the selection and training of all American citizens because of race and color.

    The success of the CIVILIAN PILOT TRAINING ACT helped put the 99TH PURSUIT SQUADRON OF TUSKEGEE on the map. It was said that "the success of ***** youth in the Army Air Force would be predicated upon the success of the 'Tuskegee Experiment.'" HBO's docudrama, THE TUSKEGEE AIRMEN, is a good depiction of this era of Black Americans seeking acceptance as military pilots. Because of the opportunity provided by the Civilian Pilot Training Act, the number of Blacks in the ARMY AIR FORCE jumped from 2,250 in 1941 to over 145,000 by 1944.

    The two major groups to see combat as AAF men were the 99TH PURSUIT SQUADRON and the 332ND FIGHTER GROUP. Out of the 332nd Group came the 100th, 301st, and 302nd Squadrons under the command of Lieutenant Colonel BENJAMIN O. DAVIS, SR., who became America's FIRST AFRICAN AMERICAN GENERAL on October 25, 1940. By 1944, the 99th was added to the 332nd and participated in campaigns in Sicily, Rome, and Romania. The 99th and 332nd earned many DISTINGUISHED UNIT CITATIONS.


    African Americans entered the MARINE CORP three years after World War II started. The MARINE CORP ended its 167 year ban on including Blacks and finally enlisted its first black Marines in 1942. Records showed that about 17,000 African American Marines served in World War II but were mostly assigned to service units such as depot and ammunition companies.


    Period: World War II

    Racial exclusionary policies were in full force in certain areas of the military during the late 1930's and early 1940's. General H. H. Arnold had made it clear that "no Blacks would ever pilot a plane in the upcoming war." The United States was mobilizing for a possible war against the united front of the AXIS POWERS: GERMANY, ITALY, and JAPAN. The legal segregation of African Americans did not allow them to receive the necessary training to become FIGHTER AIR PILOTS at white-operated pilot schools. After some protest, the WAR DEPARTMENT, in 1941, agreed to accommodate an all-black FLIGHT SCHOOL at TUSKEGEE AIR FORCE BASE. That base produced the first African American COMBAT FIGHTER PILOTS, and they became known as the TUSKEGEE AIRMEN of the 99TH PURSUIT SQUADRON. Out of this squadron came Colonel Benjamin O. Davis, Jr., son of the first African American General, Benjamin O. Davis, Sr. Colonel Davis was awarded the SILVER STAR for gallantry in COMBAT. He was later promoted to general in 1965.

  • 1 decade ago

    About half a million African Americans served overseas during World War II, almost all in segregated second-line units.

    Segregated troops remained official U.S. Army policy throughout World War II, because it did not consider racial separation to be discriminatory. The Army did attempt to dispel racist beliefs among its white officers by issuing Army Service Forces Manual M5, Leadership and the ***** Soldier. Classified "restricted," this publication tried to avoid condescension and stereotyping, while insisting on identical treatment for all soldiers, regardless of race

    During the war, the black community demanded flight training, the admission of black women into Red Cross and military nursing units, and desegregation of the armed forces. President Roosevelt, under great pressure, granted the first two demands, but refused to desegregate the military entirely.

    Although black and white soldiers rarely fought together in world war two, great strides toward an equal military were taken by the US. For instance the following: Benjamin O. Davis, Sr. was promoted to Brigadier General, flight training for blacks was planned, more blacks were drafted, Judge William H. Hastie was made a special aide to the Secretary of War, and a black advisor was appointed for the Selective Service Board.

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  • 1 decade ago

    For the most part they were kept separate from the White solders. Very few were allowed into combat situation and the majority were put in positions of cooks, latrine diggers and moving supplies. Even those who actually fought in the front lines rarely got the recognition for their actions until years later.

  • 4 years ago

    Segregation replaced into in finished swing throughout WW 2. African individuals did no longer get the credit they deserved. The Tuskegee Air adult men is a powerful occasion, most of the adult men had gave up the ghost previously the government gave them the attractiveness that they deserved.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    much more equaly then befofe but not total

    they still had to fight in the war sepretly

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