The "Tuskegee Airmen" of the Marine Corps.
June 21, 2001 8:10 AM   Subscribe

The "Tuskegee Airmen" of the Marine Corps. This is sort of a self-link; the history of the Washington DC Chapter of the Montford Point Marine Association is a project I'm working on, but I have nothing to do with their website. The Montford Point Marines were the first black Marines specifically trained to serve in combat, but very few people seem to know about them. I decided to link this after watching a special on A&E about the men who raised the flags (there were two flag raisings) at Iwo Jima. Nothing was mentioned about the black Marines who served and died there, since none of the flag-raisers were black, but they should be remembered nonetheless.
posted by jennaratrix (5 comments total)
Epson had an exhibit earlier this year that included an image of one of the Tuskegee Airmen, along with a little story on how the photographer met him and such.
posted by annathea at 8:43 AM on June 21, 2001

You mean there are people that saw the picture of the flag raisings, witnessed no blacks among them and concluded that there weren't any there? Are people really this stupid?
posted by revbrian at 9:47 AM on June 21, 2001

It is odd that when one trys a basic search for info on the flagrasiers, the site(iwojima, roenthal) are down. I heard that the men went to lengths not to be in the public eye concerning this. also I think one of these marines was a native american(not sure) segregated units probably is the reason for no african american flagraisers. (seems to be a much needed area to be researched)
posted by clavdivs at 10:23 AM on June 21, 2001

revbrian - I don't think anyone was claiming that there were no blacks at Iwo Jima because none were in that picture; I wasn't suggesting that there was any direct connection, but just listing the A&E special as what made me think of posting the link to the Montford Point Marines. I guess it's really just because it interests me, and I thought other people might be interested.

clavdivs - yes, one of the flag raisers was Native American (Pima, I think), and all three flagraisers who survived the war were shy of attention, but did a war bond tour to raise funds. At this point, units were still segregated, but the general chaos at Iwo Jima on the days of the flag raisings (D-Day plus 9 and 10) would have more or less negated ANY unit segregation, whether by race or even normal unit separations not based on race. The same thing happened at Normandy; men would just band together regardless of unit insignia, and follow any officer they could find. I suspect a similar thing occurred at Iwo Jima, and one of the minor phenomena of war is that almost no one is a racist (or an athiest) under direct fire.
posted by jennaratrix at 11:39 AM on June 21, 2001

damn fine rejoiner and your right.
posted by clavdivs at 12:35 PM on June 21, 2001

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