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Military History/white casualties in WWII


Dr. Nordquist - I'm hoping you can define the meaning of white casualties, used by (at least) the US Navy in the Pacific theater during World War II.  I've run into it several times, such as in this excerpt from a report by the U.S.S Doyen at Iwo Jima (upper case indicated as in original):
"Orders were received to transfer all except WHITE casualties to the USS PRESIDENT ADAMS.". . . A total of fifty (50) casualties were transferred to the USS PRESIDENT ADAMS; the remainder were classified  as WHITE with the exception of about forty (40) who were classified non-evacuable as it was considered that their recovery would be seriously jeopardized by transfer at that time."
From this and other documents, it's apparent that the term was a category of injury, not an indication of race. Can you explain?
Many thanks for your insight.

Sorry, I am a Swede living in Sweden and this category is completely new and unknown to me. But probably not in the Pentagon. So I do suggest that you send your question there and you will probably be informed. A Google search will probably give you the address to which your question should be sent. Good luck!

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Claes-Gustaf Nordquist, M.D.


I`m a retired Swedish military physician-surgeon with a big interest in military history - mainly European and especially of the Nordic-Scandinavian area. This also includes the history of military medicine.


A very long and intense personal interest.

Doctor of Medicine. You can also find me here on under these categories: I also answer questions in other categories: Oncology (General Cancer), General History, Brain Tumors, Breast Cancer, Colon Cancer

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