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How Navajo code talkers helped the United States fight in WW2


There is an article and an 18 minute audio to listen to.

This code was never broken.

November 13, 2018



I would state it more positively than that. The Navajos pioneered the Code Talker program which was adopted by several Allies in World War II. It was a major contribution to the Allied victory in the Second World War. It is said the Battle of Iwo Jima might have been lost but/for the efforts of the Code Talkers. The Navajo Code talkers had worked out a code within Navajo. The Imperial Japanese Army had a Navajo POW from Bataan, but he was unable to crack the Code. There are probably 500 Native languages in the United States so it is hard to pick out which ones need programs. If it helps Duo decide, I do have Ashinaabwe speaking friends. I applaud the adoption of Navajo by Duolingo.com. The Navajo Code talkers have a web site. https://navajocodetalkers.org


Boozhoo, I support learning my language Anishinaabemowin. Miigwetch for the suggestion.


You can visit a good display of these words and the story at the Monument Valley tribal park's visitor's center.

Also, while Navajo is recognized for being unbroken, you should also know how many languages were used alongside it: Assiniboine, Basque, Cherokee, Choctaw, Comanche, Cree, Meskwaki, Mohawk, Muscogee (Seminole/Creek), Navajo,Nubian, Tlingit, Welsh, Wenzhounese.

When my grandfather was at D-Day, it was the Comanche who helped them. "Fourteen of the Comanche Code Talkers were sent overseas during WWII to fight in the European Theater. Thirteen of those men hit the beaches of Normandy with Allied troops on D-Day. When the 4th Infantry Division landed on Utah Beach, they were five miles off their designated target. The first message sent from the beach was sent in Comanche from Code Talker, Private First Class Larry Saupitty. His message was “Tsaakʉ nʉnnuwee. Atahtu nʉnnuwee,” which translates to: “We made a good landing. We landed in the wrong place.”" -- http://www.comanchemuseum.com/code_talkers.html

What's cool is my grandfather's family (from Leech Lake) would one day intermarry with a Comanche family connected to WW2.

Also, in the interest of language and WW2, one word of advice I have is to adapt "Ira A. Hayes Baht" when you say his name. He was O'otham (Gila River Indian Community is here in Phoenix, AZ) and known for flag raising at Iwo Jima. They didn't make this distinction in the movies about him, and they don't either at the parks commemorating him on the Reservation, but my traditional friend says this is an error and he wishes the tribe corrected those signs. To say a person's name who has passed without adding "baht" is to not allow them to rest in peace each time you call to them. I see similar things in other languages. We sort of see this in Navajo with ńtʼę́ę́ʼ (was).


I just watched the movie about this called "Windtalkers."


That's awesome, when I was younger I made up stupid codes that could be broken easily.

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