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Wednesday, July 30, 2008

United States Army Apologizes to Wrongly Accused Black Soldiers of WWII

In Seattle today, 28 Black WWII soldiers were given back the honor that was stolen from them 64 years ago. Along with an official apology, the United States also reinstated the 28 soldiers to the status of honorably discharged.

On August 14, 1944, a riot between (segregated) Black and White soldiers left an Italian POW, Guglielmo Olivotto, dead. In the largest court martial hearing of WWII, 43 Black soldiers were charged with inciting the riot that killed Olivotto. Of the 43 charged, 28 were found guilty and subsequently released from their duties with a dishonorable discharge and sentenced up to 25 years in prison.

Today, the Army admitted that there was conclusive evidence of negligence in the official court martial procedure, including gross misconduct by the prosecutor who has been accused of withholding evidence. The Army overturned the previous convictions and offered a bittersweet apology to the soldiers and their families. Of the 28 convicted, only 2 are still alive, and sadly Samuel Snow passed away shortly after his son read him the official apology.

Sources and more information:

  • Be a mouth piece - small talk this story into the consciousness of the people around you.
  • Research the impact that Black Americans had on WWII
  • Segue and promote Spike Lee's new Joint - Miracle at St. Anna.

Peace and Blessings...
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