He constantly thought of The Bird and his inhumane treatments towards Louie. The Bird was haunting him in his dreams. Louie would regularly wake up screaming and was scared to go to sleep. Louie’s friends and family could see a dramatic change from the boy who ran the Olympics to the man physically and mentally destroyed by the war. A friend of Louie’s, Payton Jordan explained “It was like he got hit real and he was trying to shake it off” But at one point the mental unstableness the war had caused him shot to an all time high when Louis decided that he was going to kill The Bird.
World War II was a very traumatizing time for the soldiers that fought in it. Unfortunately, the War was also a very traumatic experience for the Japanese Americans that were forced into internee camps. Key examples of those who have struggled through awful conditions are Miné Okubo and Louie Zamperini. Miné is a Japanese American artist who was forced to live in squalor conditions surrounded by armed guards. Louie is an American soldier and a previous Olympic athlete that was beaten daily and starved almost to death in prisoner of war camps.
When Louie was a prisoner in the camp, he needed to resist the dehumanization and beatings he had been given by the Bird. Louie had brought out this theme in the camps many times. He had stayed strong against the Bird, who would stop at nothing to destroy his dignity. Once, the Bird had given Louie and some others the job of cleaning the benjo, or bathroom. The Bird thought they were going to hate it, but, “To deprive him of the pleasure of seeing them miserable, they made a point of being jolly” (179).
When the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, many lives were lost. There were 2,335 deaths and many more were injured. In the novel, Under the Blood-Red Sun, Graham Salisbury tells about a Japanese boy who lived through Pearl Harbor which was one of the worst days in American history. The author taught the reader about bravery, different customs of the Japanese people, and not to judge people based on their race. Tomi shows bravery through tasks that happened to him throughout the novel.. Tomi is a boy whose father was taken by the Americans because he was Japanese.
After a traumatizing crash and a forty-six day survival at sea, Louie is taken captive by Japanese officials. Shortly after being captured, Zamperini is taken to a POW camp where he is abused physically and mentally. Throughout the novel the readers learn that the hardships of war effect Louie, causing the loss of his dignity. After Louie was captured by the Japanese, he was taken to a POW camp ,Ofuna, they began to deprive Louie of human essentials such as food and water. To make matters worse, they started to conduct experiments on him and his comrade Phil, “The doctor pushed more solution into his vein, and the spinning worsened.
Even the block leaders are frustrated and pitiful. The Kapos are shown to be somewhat sympathetic to their fellow prisoners by assuring that they will live another day, but ones like the Blockalteste don’t know how to keep the wider populace calmed when they know death may come. The block leader shuts them out in his office when men beg him not to be killed(140), and fails to keep spirits high when a man says he may be taken for whatever experimental horrors to torture him (100). With all these negative things, it is hard to imagine that Wiesel could live with these perpetually in his head. Indeed, He may be using literacy as an emotional outlet to share with others.
Louie’s story conveys the central theme of redemption. During his imprisonment in Japan, he was consistently beaten by the prison guards, especially by Watanabe, who deliberately focused his attacks on Louie. After he returned to America, he seriously injured his leg while training, making him unable to run in a future Olympic Games. However, this did not prevent him from going after his new goal: “he was going to kill the Bird.” (361) As his murderous hatred deepened, his wife took him to see a sermon taught by Billy Graham, after which he converted to Christianity. Following this event, he had no hatred for his former prison guards.
According to Floyd, “The detainees became prisoners of war.” This one line describes the harshness of the inhuman approach that America took in the unwarranted fear of the Japanese. Helen Brill’s account recalled how she came to be teacher at an internment camp in Manzanar. The conditions were less than ideal. The floor was the place to sleep before the residents were given cots stuffed with straw. The students were not even allowed film to take pictures for their yearbook.