Native Americans in World War II
Around the time period of 1942, Native Americans joined War World II. They helped the Americans win the war with their language. Soldiers communicated important information to each other regarding missions and locations via various codes spoken over radios. The problem for these soldiers was that their codes used to keep sensitive information private was often broken by the enemy. The Native American languages were never written, therefore, it was hard for the enemy to break their “code,” which was their language. These Native Americans were called Code Talkers.
Philip Johnson, an engineer, was raised on a Navajo reservation. His father, William Johnson, was a missionary (Jones, WorldBookOnline.com). Philip suggested using Navajo language for the codes. The language was unknown to most non-Navajos. The language has a complex structure and difficult pronunciation. The language has sing-song qualities and is nearly impossible to decipher.
Twenty-nine Navajo were recruited to make the code for the US military. Code Talkers used familiar words to describe US military terms: A fighter plane was a humming bird; a destroyer was a shark; a bomb was an egg; a dive-bomber was a chicken hawk; a submarine was an iron fish; barrage was an iron rain; a machine was a fast shooter, and there were many more. The codes even had proper nouns within them. They used the alphabet in English to spell names: ant for A; bear for B; cat for C, and so on. The special Navajo dictionary had four hundred and thirteen military terms. The main Native American group to join the military was the Navajo, but there were others. Seventeen Comanche men were used for their language for codes in US Army Signal Corps.
The first Code Talkers were stationed in the Pacific in the Fall of 1942. They landed in Guadalcanal. Having the Code Talkers there helped break and speak the codes half as fast (Bernstein 52). Team Code Talkers were...