Last updated on: 1/30/2017 | Author:

1943-1944 – US Supreme Court Justifies Executive Order 9066 in Hirabayashi v. The United States and Korematsu v. The United States

“[T]he Supreme Court… was loath to interfere with what the [President
Franklin D. Roosevelt] administration considered a necessary war measure
[Executive Order 9066]. Three cases testing the constitutionality of
the evacuation orders were heard by the Court. In the first case, Hirabayashi v. United States (1943),
the Court sustained [9-0] the legitimacy of the curfew, but evaded ruling on
the wider implications of relocation. In the second case, Korematsu v. United States [1944],
the Court [6-3] could no longer ignore the core issue of whether loyal
citizens could be summarily relocated to detention camps solely on the
basis of their race. Although a majority of the Court agreed with
Justice Black’s view that military necessity justified the relocation,
three members of the Court… dissented… On the same day, the Court
unanimously authorized a writ of habeas corpus for Mitsuye Endo, a
citizen whose loyalty had been clearly established.”