What ways was World War II a racial war in both the European and Pacific theaters?
World War II was a racial war in the context of the world. The Nazis believe that they were racially superior to non-Nordics and particularly to non-Europeans. The Japanese believe that they were also superior to non-Japanese, particularly to Chinese, Koreans and Caucasians. World War II was fought in order to establish racial equality to and squash any type of ethnic and racial prejudice. World War Ii was also the catalyst for racial self-determination for many Asian and African countries. It also was the embryonic development of the American Civil Rights movement.
It was racial in the sense that Adolph Hitler not only saw the Aryan Race as the rulers of Humankind and superior to others, he absolutely hated Jews, hence the Holocaust in which around six million were killed off in his extermination camps, so in this sense it was very racial. But I doubt this was the main motive.
I think a stronger motive was one of anger and resentment at the way Germany was treated by the victors after World War One. Hitler fought as an ordinary foot soldier, a private and then a corporal, and no doubt felt both humiliated and put upon by people such as the French, Russians and Poles.
He did not, in the earlier days, have quite as much antagonism against the British, despite their being an earlier enemy. "They are not our natural enemy," he is claimed to have said This changed later. It had too. After all, it was Great Britain who declared war on Germany when German troops invaded Poland.
As for the Japanese, they had observed very closely that 'Might is right,' from the moment the American Fleet sailed into Tokyo Bay in the 19th Century. It did not go unoticed by them that those who had the best armies and navies and the greatest military power, also happened to have created empires for themselves all around the world. The Japanese jumped on the 'empire building bandwagon' as soon as they could. For a bit like Adolph Hitler, their leaders thought of themselves as being superior.
But one must not forget the economics. Empires have always pulled lots of wealth from those they controlled. As a lad born in England in the 1930s, I truly believed for a long time that Englishmen were somehow superior to almost every other race. It took some growing up to realize that this is not true.
To simply state the reasons for WWII a war of racism seems over simplified , Morgan Freeman said when asked in an interview , "Morgan , What do we need to do about todays discussions of racism "
And he answered quite eloquently, "Stop Talking so much about it " !
WWII was about political , economic and tyrannical control of the world , Race became merely a battle cry to elevate to a hysteria in the motivation of not so intelligent soldiers in battle . a tool for the conquerors.
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