MALA is proud to launch two new inititiatives in partnership with two outstanding institutions. These initiatives will preserve the oral histories of two overlapping communities: U.S. veterans across all conflicts, and the “homefront heroes” of World War II. MALA is honored to foster the recognition of Muslim Americans in the ranks of both.
The first initiative is in partnership with the Veterans History Project (VHP) at the Library of Congress, which works to collect, preserve, and make accessible the personal accounts of America’s wartime veterans so that future generations may hear from them directly and better understand their selfless service. MALA is working to expand the stories of Muslim American veterans in this collection, and we invite you to share your story as a veteran, or nominate a veteran you love for this project.
The second initiative is a partnership with Washington College (MD) and its Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience. MALA is working with the Center’s National Home Front Project to record, preserve, and share audio interviews with Muslim Americans born in or before 1940. Histories of World War II too often omit the experiences of “home front heroes:” the men, women, and children who bought bonds, built planes, endured sacrifices, and kept families together while loved ones served on the front lines. MALA is honored to spotlight Muslim American civilians who contributed to the war effort or whose family members served in World War II as part of “The Greatest Generation.” Adam Goodheart, Director of the Starr Center, had this to say:
All of us at Washington College are delighted to embark on this new partnership with the Muslim American Leadership Alliance, building together on the impressive oral history work that MALA has already done in other spheres. Oral history connects generations, amplifies voices that were at risk of going unheard, and ensures that future historians will portray the American experience in all its diversity and complexity. Muslim voices and Muslim memories have often been omitted from depictions of World War II. By including them in the National Home Front Project archive, we hope to broaden our understanding of the ‘Greatest Generation,” including its home front heroes. We can’t wait to hear those stories.
Since the American Revolutionary and Civil Wars, Muslim Americans have proudly served in the United States military. The Muslim American Leadership Alliance is privileged to launch these partnerships to collect, spotlight, and archive the voices of men and women who have served. There are so many Muslim American veterans as well as WWII’s homefront heroes living today, each with a unique story to tell: we want to hear them all.