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Fighting in ParadiseLabor Unions, Racism, and Communists in the Making of Modern Hawaii$
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Gerald Horne

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780824835026

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824835026.001.0001

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The Labor of War

The Labor of War

Chapter:
(p.63) Chapter 4 The Labor of War
Source:
Fighting in Paradise
Author(s):

Gerald Horne

Publisher:
University of Hawai'i Press
DOI:10.21313/hawaii/9780824835026.003.0005

This chapter considers factors that undermined the labor movement in wartime Hawaii. The war had stopped labor organizing in its tracks following a prewar spurt in union growth. Part of the reason why labor fell from the euphoric promise of the late 1930s to the knuckle-scraping lows of wartime was that the Communist Party (CP) had gone into remission. After the onset of war, Robert Fitzgerald of the CP in San Francisco arrived in Hawaii and recommended that the party disband “because the composition of the CP members in Hawaii was not the same with that of the mainland.” In other words, there have been too many Orientals, which raised too many problems. Moreover, since Washington and Moscow were allies, it was imperative “not to do anything that might irritate the Army and Navy, particularly because there were some Orientals in the membership.”

Keywords:   labor movement, wartime Hawaii, organized labor, labor organizing Hawaii, Communist Party

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