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IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

Mar 1, 2005

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

March 1, 2005
Mr. EVANS (for himself, Ms. CORRINE BROWN of Florida, Mr.
SNYDER, Mr. JONES of North Carolina, Mr. HONDA, Ms. CARSON,
Mr. CUMMINGS, Mr. SCOTT of Georgia, Mrs. MCCARTHY, Mr.
HASTINGS of Florida, Mr. BISHOP of Georgia, Mr. TOWNS, Ms.
EDDIE BERNICE JOHNSON of Texas, Ms. JACKSON-LEE of Texas,
Mr. MEEKS of New York, Ms. WATERS, Mr. FILNER, Mr. MURTHA,
Ms. HARRIS, Mr. HIGGINS, Mr. PAYNE, Ms. MOORE of Wisconsin,
Mr. CONYERS, Ms. KILPATRICK of Michigan, and Ms.
MILLENDER-MCDONALD) submitted the following concurrent
resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Armed
Services


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CONCURRENT RESOLUTION
Commemorating the service to the Nation during World War II
of the African-American members of the United States Marine
Corps who came to be known as the Montford Point Marines.

Whereas during World War II the Armed Forces, including the
United States Marine Corps, were racially segregated, with
African-Americans serving in units separate from other
Americans;

Whereas African-American volunteers who enlisted in the
United States Marine Corps during World War II served the
United States in a most honorable fashion yet were subject
to racial discrimination and harassment;

Whereas African-Americans who underwent Marine Corps
recruit training at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, were
crowded into segregated substandard facilities for training
separate from white Marine recruits at the western-most
portion of Camp Lejeune, in an area named Montford Point,
giving rise to these African-American Marines being
referred to as `Montford Point Marines';

Whereas the Montford Point Marines were initially trained
and led by white officers and noncommissioned officers;

Whereas the Montford Point Marines endured racial
harassment even in combat zones by fellow service members,
including smoke grenades dropped into their camp and
harassment by the military police;

Whereas the Montford Point Marines and other
African-American members of the Armed Forces endured public
comments and insults from a hostile military and civilian
leadership;

Whereas African-Americans from every part of the country
continued to join the Marine Corps throughout World War II
while serving in segregated units under duress without
respect from the institution or the public;

Whereas during World War II African-American Marine Corps
units fought and served in the Pacific theatre,
participating in the liberation of the Ellice Islands,
Eniwetok Atoll, the Marshall Islands, Kwajalein Atoll, Iwo
Jima, Peleliu, the Marianas Islands, Saipan, Tinian, Guam,
and Okinawa;

Whereas Time Magazine's correspondent in the Central
Pacific, Robert Sherrod, wrote that the African-American
Marines first encountering combat in Saipan as uninitiated
units were worthy of the Navy's highest possible combat
performance rating of a 4.0;

Whereas these volunteers joined the Marine Corps to
demonstrate their commitment to a largely prejudiced
nation, defied an unwarranted stereotype, and achieved
distinction through brave and honorable service;

Whereas their heroism, commitment, and valor changed
long-held attitudes within the Marine Corps and military
leadership of the Nation; and

Whereas their heroism and sacrifices improved the treatment
for future generations of African Americans in a United
States military institution that today is widely considered
to be nondiscriminatory and to provide an excellent
opportunity for minorities for career advancement: Now,
therefore, be it


Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate
concurring), That Congress--

(1) acknowledges a wrong and discriminatory policy of
racial segregation in the United States Marine Corps during
World War II;

(2) recognizes that today's United States Marine Corps
provides an excellent opportunity for advancement for
persons of all races, in significant measure due to the
service and example of the African-American members of the
Marines Corps during World War II who came to be known as
the Montford Point Marines;

(3) honors the work of the members of the Montford Point
Marine Association to pass along their experience to future
generations; and

(4) expresses the eternal gratitude of a grateful Nation to
early African-American Marines willing to suffer racial
discrimination while fighting for the Nation's freedom and
for the liberation of people in the Pacific.

 JAMES E STEWART JR PRESIDENT

JOHN TILLMAN VICE PRESIDENT

Historical advisor Byron Stewart PhD

 

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