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Military History/Navajo Code Talkers in WWII

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Question
Hello, I am an 8th grader doing a National History Day Project about the Navajo Code Talkers in WWII. I was hoping that you could provide me with some information about the rights of the code talkers and what they did in the war? Also what responsibilities did the Government have pertaining to the Navajo during and after the war? Thank you!

Answer
Hi Max,
This is an ironic question. I was 8 rows away from 6 of the living original 29 Navajo Code Talkers at the Grand Ole Opry on Nov 9th.

What the code talkers did was use their native language which was basically undocumented to send coded info from the front line to the headquarters.
http://www.navajocodetalkers.org/the_code/

Here is more details on them.
http://www.history.navy.mil/faqs/faq61-2.htm  http://discovernavajo.com/aaalivingmag.html http://library.nau.edu/speccoll/exhibits/indigenous_voices/navajo/codetalkers.ht

Here are books written about them
Code Talker: The First and Only Memoir by One of the Original Navajo Code Talkers of WW II
Written by: Chester Nez , Judith Schiess Avila

The Life and Times of the Code Talker
by Chester Nez, Judith Schiess Avila

Navajo Code Talkers
by Nathan Aaseng

Code Talker Stories
by Laura Tohe

True Whispers: The Story of the Navajo Code Talkers [DVD]
Directed by Valerie Red-Horse Ě PBS Home Video Ě

During the war they treated as any other US Marine in general.
However, they had a Marine assigned to them to ensure they would not be captured alive.
None were.
http://ciphermachines.com/navajo

As to how they were treated after the war; they would receive the stand benefits under the GI Bill when they came home. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G.I._Bill
There nothing special done for them. Most people did not know what they did because they were sworn to secrecy and actions were highly classified. The military declassified it in 1968.

They gained some fame after the major motion picture "Wind Talkers" came out.
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0245562/
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=86QB_WXYcqE

Recently they been remember and honored
http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2013/11/20/c9d319ea-521d-11e3-9fe0-fd2ca7
http://swampland.time.com/2013/11/20/congress-honors-american-indian-code-talker
http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2013/11/18/finally-spotlight-shine-cod

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My interest is in the area US Military History. I have a special interest in US small arms. The Civil War, WWI and WWII are areas of special interest but I can handle questions on many areas of US military history.

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