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'The need grows for qualified linguists of many languages. The Army is keeping step with that need by providing these linguists. Film shows steps in training, sources of both teachers and students, and visits the classrooms of the school located at Monterey, California.'
"The Big Picture" episode TV-200
The Big Picture TV Series playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL_hX5wLdhf_Jwfz5l_3NRAcCYURbOW2Fl
Public domain film from the US National Archives, slightly cropped to remove uneven edges, with the aspect ratio corrected, and mild video noise reduction applied.
The soundtrack was also processed with volume normalization, noise reduction, clipping reduction, and/or equalization (the resulting sound, though not perfect, is far less noisy than the original).
The Defense Language Institute (DLI) is a United States Department of Defense (DoD) educational and research institution, which provides linguistic and cultural instruction to the Department of Defense, other Federal Agencies and numerous customers around the world. The Defense Language Institute is responsible for the Defense Language Program, and the bulk of the Defense Language Institute's activities involve educating DoD members in assigned languages, and international personnel in English...
The Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center (DLIFLC) traces its roots to the eve of America’s entry into World War II, when the U.S. Army established a secret school at the Presidio of San Francisco to teach the Japanese language. Classes began 1 November 1941, with four instructors and 60 students in an abandoned airplane hangar at Crissy Field. The students were primarily second generation Japanese Americans (Nisei) from the West Coast, who had learned Japanese from their first-generation parents but were educated in the US and whose Japanese was somewhat limited, the "Kibei," Japanese-Americans who had been educated in Japan and spoke Japanese like the Japanese themselves, along with two Caucasian students, the only US military personnel who had any useful command of the Japanese language at the beginning of WWII. Nisei Hall, along with several other buildings, is named in honor of these earliest students, who are honored in the Institute’s Yankee Samurai exhibit.
During the war, the Military Intelligence Service Language School (MISLS), as it came to be called, grew dramatically. When Japanese-Americans on the West Coast were moved into internment camps in 1942, the school moved to temporary quarters at Camp Savage, Minnesota. By 1944 the school had outgrown these facilities and moved to nearby Fort Snelling. More than 6,000 graduates served throughout the Pacific Theater during the war and the subsequent occupation of Japan.
In 1946 the school moved to the Presidio of Monterey, the renamed Army Language School expanded rapidly in 1947–48 during the Cold War. Instructors, including native speakers of more than thirty languages and dialects, were recruited from all over the world. Russian became the largest language program, followed by Chinese, Korean, and German...
Cold War language instruction
The U.S. Air Force met most of its foreign language training requirements in the 1950s through contract programs at universities such as Yale, Cornell, Indiana, and Syracuse and the U.S. Navy taught foreign languages at the Naval Intelligence School in Washington, D.C., but in 1963 these programs were consolidated into the Defense Foreign Language Program. A new headquarters, the Defense Language Institute (DLI), was established in Washington, D.C... The Army Language School became the DLI West Coast Branch, and the foreign language department at the Naval Intelligence School became the DLI East Coast Branch. The contract programs were gradually phased out. The DLI also took over the English Language School at Lackland Air Force Base, Texas, which became the DLI English Language Center (DLIELC).
During the peak of American involvement in Vietnam (1965–73), the DLI stepped up the pace of language training. While regular language training continued unabated, more than 20,000 service personnel studied Vietnamese through the DLI’s programs, many taking a special eight-week military adviser “survival” course... Vietnamese instruction continued at DLI until 2004.
In the 1970s the institute’s headquarters and all resident language training were consolidated at the West Coast Branch and renamed the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center (DLIFLC). In 1973, the newly formed U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) assumed administrative control, and in 1976, all English language training operations were returned to the U.S. Air Force, which operates DLIELC to this day...