The "Go Home" Movement After WWII

Yoshie Furuhashi furuhashi.1 at osu.edu
Wed Mar 26 10:27:05 MST 2003


Ed Kovacs posted a very interesting post in response to replies to my
query about the origin of the slogan "Support the Troops -- Bring
Them Home."  With his permission, I'm forwarding the post here:

*****   Date: Wed, 26 Mar 2003 01:48:35 -0500 (EST)
From: mondokovo at AOL.COM
Subject: [SLDRTY-L]: The "Go Home" Movement After WWII
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Hi All: The draftee army of World War Two, once the German Army and
the Imperial Forces of Japan surrendered, were ready to go home and
resume their civilian lives. The U.S. War Department (as it was then
correctly named) however wanted to use the GIs still in uniform in
Europe and in Asia to break with the allied Soviet Union and start at
once what later became known as the Cold War. But the GIs would have
none of it. Large demonstrations of GIs took place in Paris and
German cities where U.S. were stationed, as well in the Far East,
forcing President Truman to institute a point system by which the
entire draftee army of World War was quickly demobilized. This "Go
Home" movement was organized  by the troops (GIs in the parlance of
the times) or more precisely by the non-coms of the veteran outfits
and had nothing to do with any anti-war movement in the U.S. which in
any case did not exist. I can speak with authority on this matter
since I was a leading participant in it in Europe and spent many
hours with Fred Halstead exchanging information about his similar
experiences in the U.S. navy in the Far East. Thus the slogan
"Support the troops, bring them home" did not originate in the
immediate post WWII period: "(We) Go Home" was the slogan of the GIs
themselves. Ed Kovacs   *****

Two separate observations:

(1) I hope some left-wing artist will make a film or video
documentary about the "Go Home" Movement after WWII.

(2) It made some sense for US leftists to add "Support the Troops" to
the slogan "Bring the Troops Home" before the current war on Iraq
began.  It doesn't now.  It will again make sense for US leftists to
add "Support the Troops" to the slogan "Bring the Troops Home Now" if
and when the US troops in Iraq and elsewhere begin to collectively
make a demand that they be sent home.
--
Yoshie

* Calendar of Events in Columbus:
<http://www.osu.edu/students/sif/calendar.html>
* Student International Forum: <http://www.osu.edu/students/sif/>
* Committee for Justice in Palestine: <http://www.osudivest.org/>
* Al-Awda-Ohio: <http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Al-Awda-Ohio>
* Solidarity: <http://solidarity.igc.org/>

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