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March 18, 2010

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Aspirant

Check your premises. This would be a useful line of argument only if the members of Texas Board of Education were concerned with things like "truth."

Donna F. Cole

The magnitude of the mass removal and incarceration of 120,000 Japanese Americans during WWII who lost everything was an unlawful act of discrimination solely based on race with no evidence of sabotage against the United States Government which should be taught in history text books. The Japanese American experience must be told without the dilution of some Germans and Italians who were detained at Department of War sites with a hearing/trials.

The Japanese American young men (30,000) proved their loyalty and citizenship to America by volunteering to fight in a segregated battalion known as the 442nd Regimental Combat Team and are the most decorated men in US military history for its size and length of service while their families were behind barbed wire with guns facing them in remote areas of the United States with no civil liberties (trials).

800 Japanese American soldiers gave their lives while fighting for freedom and fought valiantly in Europe. They rescued 211 American Soliders from the Texas 36th known as the "The Lost Battalion" in France...which news traveled throughout Europe and raise the morale and lived up to the motto "No Man Left Behind".

Former Secretary of Department Norman Mineta had to remind the President and the Cabinet members after 9-11 that the repeat of WWII must not happen again to any other group, regardless of race, religion or national origin, and to remind the American people that great nations can also admit and redress great mistakes. (Secretary Mineta was 10 years old when his family was taken away from their homes to an internment camp).

The Japanese American experience is relevant today because it is a reminder of the fragility of the US Constitution and how we must vigilantly guard our constitutional rights.

Our Story. Your rights!

The Go For Broke National Education Center, the National Japanese American Memorial Foundation, the Japanese American National Museum have materials and curriculum to assist the teachers when they read of the History Text in Texas School Books the students can learn about Leadership, Citizenship, Morale Courage, The Constitutional Rights, Civil Liberties, Bravery, Freedom and listen to the stories from those interned.

The Japanese American soldiers were "Unlikely Liberators" who liberated Jews from the death camps of Dachau while the Japanese American soldiers had their own families behind barbed wire interned in camps in the United States.

I hope that the Text Book Board will reconsider the dilution of the Japanese American experience during WWII with the German and Italians as the experience was not similar at all!

Sincerely,
Donna Fujimoto Cole
A 3rd generation Japanese American
Pres/CEO
Cole Chemical
Houston, Tx

Sandra Burke

I am a US citizen. This is horribly absurd. THIS is why some people do not learn from history... we can not learn from 1/2 truths & lies. This is no different than the idiots that deny the holocaust.

David Bernstein

Eric, I'm sympathetic to your perspective, but I'd be even more sympathetic if you'd acknowledge that something like 2/3 of the adults who were detained were aliens. If I'm getting my numbers right, this means that only about 25,000 of the detained adults were U.S. citizens.

This actually compounds the tragedy, because many of these individuals would have liked to become citizens but were barred by law. But nevertheless, put in historical context, the fact that 2/3 of the adults were officially "enemy aliens" helps explain why there wasn't more of an outcry about the policy (both because the number of citizen adults detained was nowhere near 120K, and because with such a large percentage of the community non-citizens, it gave fodder to those who argued that the community as a whole would likely harbor many disloyal individuals.)

As I suggested, and you also note by comparing things with the Germans and Italians, it would have been an injustice even if only "enemy aliens" and their minor children had been deported and detained. But I think it's worth laying out all the facts, especially if one is trying to figure out why even liberal USSC Justices went along first with curfew, then with deportation. (Relatedly, I find it fascinating that the Hirabayashi Court acknowledged how poorly the U.S. government and citizenry had treated the Japanese, and whether the Japanese in turn might not look so kindly on their country. Say what you will about this rationale, it's not a racist one.)

Eleftherios Venizelos

Your distinction between racial and nonracial detentions holds no water. You do not provide any evidence that the Germans and Italians took up arms against the US or were guilty of crimes, thus their detentions were racial and your defense of the practice is an endorsement of racism. You admit that: "Roughly 11,000 Germans were interned by the Justice Department in the United States as enemy aliens during World War II, as were some 3,000 to 4,000 Italians. These numbers included small numbers of U.S. citizen children who, as dependents, went into internment with their enemy alien parents." Why were the children enemy aliens? Because of their actions. No, because of the race of their parents. Why deny this.

You must also know that the definition of race in the 1940s included distinctions among white people, as in English and Irish, German and Slavic, or Japanese and Chinese.

WIlliam J. Hopwood

I got a kick out of Professor Muller's accusations of "shame" and "obfuscation"
against the Texas Board of Education. That takes real chutzpah in view of his
own obsessive compulsion to confuse "race" with national origin as he
distorts numerous facets of the historical record encompassing the World War II Japanese evacuation issue

For those of us who lived through that era and have not forgotten the
customs of the time, the word "race" was commonly used in place of "nation"
to describe one's nationality. Winston Churchill frequently described his
countrymen as being members of the "English race," as did others. To
deplore General DeWitt's similar choice of words "the Japanese race is
an enemy race," is to display historical naivety as well as to substitute
present-day ideology for historical reality. Japan was, indeed, an enemy
nation, as some seem unaware of and determined to remain so.

Further as to Professsor Muller's denigration of General DeWitt, as Conn points out in "Guarding the United States and its Outposts," Muller's statement that "....forty thousand
Japanese resident aliens were evicted... not pursuant to the Alien Enemy Act (but) to an exclusion order by a commanding general..." is also inaccurate. The authority for the exclusion order was the War Department in Washington with the full knowledge and consent of President Roosevelt as detailed in his Executive Order 9066. in
a number of aspects leading to the order, DeWitt"s recommendations were ignored
including DeWitt's opposition to the evacuation of U.S.citizens.

Nor was the evacuation of enemy aliens "lawless' as Muller further observes. The Constitution offers no protection to enemy aliens residing in the U.S. during a time of declared war. As the Alien Enemy Act of 1798 says in part:
"...whenever there shall be a declared war between the United States and any foreign nation or government...and the President of the United States shall make public proclamation of the event, all natives, citizens, denizens, or subjects of the hostile nation or government, being males of the age of fourteen years and upwards, who shall be within the United States, and not actually naturalized, shall be liable to be apprehended, restrained, secured and removed, as alien enemies......"

As for the some 28,000 American-born Japanese over 21 who were affected by the evacuation, the late historian, Page Smith, revealed that by the time of Pearl Harbor over 19,000 had spent time in Japan and half of those had received their education there. Estimates at the time indicated that well over half of these American-born
held dual citizenship (Japanese as well as U.S.), many having returned to the U.S.
holding reserve rank in the Japanese armed forces.

Author/syndicated columnist, Michelle Malkin, who, along with General DeWitt
has been maligned by Professor Muller in his post, does a fine job of historical
research on the subject in her book, "In Defense of Interment." Interestingly,
and to the best of my knowledge, her critics have not been able to refute any of her facts and have managed to launch only attacks on her person in a futile effort to support their own obsessive "anti-race racism" ideology. Isn't it time for this nonsense to stop, particularly on the part of academics who should know better?


William J. Hopwood, CDR USNR (Ret.)
Veteran WWII


Satsuki Ina, Ph.D,, Formerly incarcerated Tule Lake Segregation Center.

For those who cannot accept the fact that "race" (not nationality) was a primary factor leading to the incarceration of people of Japanese ancestry during WW II, I refer you to the fact that the Executive Order 9066 required that nearly 100 children in orphanages on the West Coast were removed from the Salvation Army Home in San Francisco and Shonien and Maryknoll Catholic Home in Los Angeles because they were, at least, one half Japanese by blood. A special children's encampment was established at the Manzanar prison camp to care for these orphans. If not "race" alone that what could possibly have been the basis for their removal?

The Texas School Board's decision to omit this very important distinction regarding the enemy alien German, Italian, and Japanese FROM the American citizens of Japanese ancestry serves to hide and suppress the institutioalized racism that could be repeated again in today's post 9/11 America.

WIlliam J. Hopwood

For evidence of the type of trashing of America's WWII leadership which regurgitates to this day one need look no further than above. Here we again see where an ignorance of the nuances of history have ironically resulted in a claim tantamount to racism in itself in the charge that "racism" was the motivation for the removal of a few ethnic Japanese children from disfunctional institutions in the disruptions and dislocations affecting the whole country following the Pearl Harbor attack.

First, let's clear the air with some facts. FDR's Executive Order did not "require" any movement of children. In fact by the provisions of the order, children were incapable of conforming to its terms.

The ethnic Japanese children were not relocated because of race or because they "looked like the enemy" but for secondary reasons resulting from the evacuation itself. These included but were not limited to (1) the evacuation of institutional personnel, (2) the abandonment of children by relocated parents or relatives in the wake of the evacuation, (3) children whose parent or parents had been arrested by the FBI for subversive activity, (4) children who had been in foster homes whose foster parents had been evacuated. Should such children have been left to fend for themselves on the streets? The whole intent of the government was to re-unite such children with their families insofar as possible.

All in all, only 62 such children were moved to the Children's Village at Manzanar from West Coast institutions, including the Maryknoll children's home in Los Angeles where Father Lavery approved of and worked closely with the authorities in the move and in establishing their new home at Manzanar where they received the best of treatment until foster homes or relatives could be found for them.

During the war, other children were admitted to the Children's Village including a number born out of wedlock after the evacuation and abandoned by their parents as well as for other reasons similar or related thereto.

A total of 101 children were ultimately involved. Of that total while the war was still in progress the parents were located and took back 48, 2 more went to relatives, foster homes were found for 6, 5 went to domestic employment, 10 to boarding homes, 10 were old enough to be discharged from the Children's Village at war's end and then only 20 were transferred to outside institutions for care.

So much for the phony charge of "racism." Such is often perpetrated by those with a vested interest in preserving historical revisionism in an attempt to justify the reparations and apologies heaped by a latter-day U.S. Congress on former enemy aliens while our own prisoners of the Japanese suffered unspeakable atrocities and a heavy death toll at the hands of the Japanese and received nothing in return.

William J. Hopwood, CDR USNR (Ret. Veteran WWII

Eric Muller

Hopwood, do you deny that, in both purpose and effect, DeWitt's exclusion orders operated on children as well as adults?

Let me be precise: is it your position that American citizens of Japanese ancestry under the age of 18 were not legally obligated to comply with the military's exclusion orders?

WIlliam J. Hopwood

Asks Muller:
"Hopwood, do you deny that, in both purpose and effect, DeWitt's exclusion orders operated on children as well as adults?"

No. Over 60% of the children, mostly those over age 17, held dual-citizenship status and were thus also Japanese nationals as well as coincidentally Americans by birth. As such they were considered enemy aliens as defined under President Roosevelt's Proclamation 2525 of December 7, 1941 as well as under the Alien Enemy Act of 1798. The problem of course, faced by the government, was with such a large majority of Japanese-Americans also holding enemy alien status, who among them was loyal to the U.S. and who was not?

Continues Muller:
"Let me be precise: is it your position that American citizens of Japanese ancestry under the age of 18 were not legally obligated to comply with the military's exclusion orders?"

Of course not. But as I mentioned in correcting a statement in a previous post it was not the case that EO 9066 "required" the relocation of orphans as she stated. On the contrary, as noted by tenBroek in "Prejudice, War, and the Constitution," in some cases exemptions to evacuation were granted such as to "children in orphanages" persons "too ill to be moved" and those in "insane asylums and penal institutions." It was always the compassionate intent of the government to keep children of all ages with their families insofar as possible, and such was done.

William J. Hopwood

Eric Muller

Hopwood, how does your theory explain why Amerasian children with one white and one Japanese parent were not given the option of remaining on the West Coast with their white parent, but were instead removed from the West Coast with their Japanese parent?

WIlliam J. Hopwood

"Hopwood, how does your theory explain why Amerasian children with one white and one Japanese parent were not given the option of remaining on the West Coast with their white parent, but were instead removed from the West Coast with their Japanese parent?"

Muller, I suggest that you further enlighten yourself on the subject. Such persons who were without questionable security backgrounds did have such an option. Early on, in the haste of the evacuation, WDC policy with regard to persons who were only part Japanese did vary. But within only a few weeks, as tenBroek explained: "....in the late Spring of 1942 ...mixed blood individuals (who were) citizens of the United States (could) ...return to the evacuation area if they had a 'clean record' with the intelligence services..." The opportunity
did not apply to aliens.

In the process described above, a total of 465 persons were given the exemption option including 290 children. (See Final Report- Chapter XII "Deferments and Exemptions from Evacuation.")

Thomas Kuwahara

Can you dispute these facts, Hawaii's WWII Japanese alien resident & Americans of Japanese Ancestry, AJA, population totaled about 165,000, about 1/3 of the civilian population of Hawaii. Obviously they were a major portion of the work force. About 1500 alien resident Japanese were incarcerated after Pearl Harbor by the FBI, about the same percentages of German & Italian aliens in the Islands were incarcerated. Although the President wanted to incarcerate the Island Japanese, as was done to the West Coasters, the Army Command, Military Intelligence Agencies, FBI, & many of Hawaii's civic leader said the Japanese community were loyal. I ask you, a population that is 1/3 the population compared to 2% on the West Coast, a Territory with some of the most vital military bases, which area would you think would require evacuation if the claims were true?
When the Army formed the 442 RCT in 1943, the unit was a segregated Regiment. The Army set troop levels for the Mainland & Hawaii. The request for volunteers were about 1500 men from each area, the Mainland didn't quite make its quota, Hawaii had about 10,000 apply, I wonder why.
Congress spent about 5 year on reparations & 3 Presidents & the majority of Congress agreed that the West Coast evacuation & incarceration was due to Racism, War Hysteria, & Lack of Political Leadership. In the Courts during the 1980's, AJA lawyers battled the Justice Department to vacate the conviction of the 9066 dissenters. The Courts ruled the Justice Department & Army Lied about the fact that there was proof of the West Coast Japanese population being a threat and ruled that the convictions were voided due to the facts that the Justice Departments withheld evidence & out right lied. No AJA was ever convicted of espionage in WWII. Thomas Kuwahara

WIlliam J. Hopwood

Thomas Kuwahara writes:
"Can you dispute these facts, Hawaii's WWII Japanese alien resident & Americans of Japanese Ancestry, AJA, population totaled about 165,000, about 1/3 of the civilian population of Hawaii. Obviously they were a major portion of the work force...

No, I agree.

"About 1500 alien resident Japanese were incarcerated after Pearl Harbor by the FBI, about the same percentages of German & Italian aliens in the Islands were incarcerated.

You use the word "incarcerated" incorrectly. The 1500 number is essentially correct.

"Although the President wanted to incarcerate the Island Japanese, as was done to the West Coasters ci, the Army Command, Military Intelligence Agencies, FBI, & many of Hawaii's vic leader said the Japanese community were loyal.

Not correct. They were not moved or interned for two reasons: logistics
and martial law. There were just to many to move off the island. So martial law was
imposed with draconian conditions on all residents of Hawaii. As for the West Coast, martial law would have crippled war production. Japanese were asked to move voluntarily from West Coast military zones. Over 8,000 did so. But those who would not or could not move were many and housing had to be provided for them. Ten Relocation Camps were built within months. During the war 35,000 left the camps and took jobs or or went to colleges in the East.

"I ask you, a population that is 1/3 the population compared to 2% on the West Coast, a Territory with some of the most vital military bases, which area would you think would require evacuation if the claims were true?

Hawaii would, except for the security controls applied under martial law.

"When the Army formed the 442 RCT in 1943,...volunteers were about 1500 men from each area, the Mainland didn't quite make its quota...

You bet it didn't only 1200 volunteered out of 19,000 of military age.

'Hawaii had about 10,000 apply, I wonder why.

Who knows? Maybe to get away from martial law.


"Congress spent about 5 year on reparations... the majority of Congress agreed that the West Coast evacuation & incarceration was due to Racism, War Hysteria, & Lack of Political Leadership.

Those were the words in the report of the political commission set up to study the matter. The conflict of interest in the Commission membership and staff was appalling. Congress approved the report under political pressure of JA lobbying groups set up seeking redress and monetary reparations. Notably three of Congress' most liberal Senators did not vote for the payoff. Gore, Biden, and
the late Ted Kennedy.

"In the Courts during the 1980's, AJA lawyers battled the Justice Department to vacate the conviction of the 9066 dissenters....

It wasn't much of a battle. The government made only a ""show"' of defense because of political considerations. There were only two cases. One was Korematsu who was not a dissenter. He was arrested in disguise after plastic surgery. His motivation was to avoid evacuation so he could elope with his Caucasian girlfriend. The other case was Hirabyashi which the goverment bungled by not properly preparing evidence for trial and the judge would not allow it to be presented. The cases were superficial in that they amounted only to throwing out the wartime convictions but not the Supreme Court decisions upholding the government wartime actions under which the original arrests were made.

"No AJA was ever convicted of espionage in WWII.

Cases were not brought because the legal discovery would have revealed the top secret means by which evidence was being obtained, namely the MAGIC cryptographic program by which we were reading much of pre-war Japanese coded messages between Tokyo and its embassy and consulates in the U.S.

William J. Hopwood


WIlliam J. Hopwood

"Can you dispute these facts, Hawaii's WWII Japanese alien resident & Americans of Japanese Ancestry, AJA, population totaled about 165,000, about 1/3 of the civilian population of Hawaii. Obviously they were a major portion of the work force...

I agree.

"About 1500 alien resident Japanese were incarcerated after Pearl Harbor by the FBI, about the same percentages of German & Italian aliens in the Islands were incarcerated.

You use the word "incarcerated" incorrectly. The 1500 number is essentially correct.

"Although the President wanted to incarcerate the Island Japanese, as was done to the West Coasters ci, the Army Command, Military Intelligence Agencies, FBI, & many of Hawaii's vic leader said the Japanese community were loyal.

Not so. They were not moved or interned for two reasons: logistics
and martial law. There were just to many to move or detain, and martial law
imposed draconian conditions on all residents of Hawaii. As for the West Coast martial law would have crippled war production. Japanese were asked to move voluntarily from West Coast military zones. Over 8,000 did so. Those who couldn't or didn't move were many and housing had to be provided for. Ten Relocation Camps were built within months. During the war 35,000 left the camps and took jobs or or went to colleges in the East.

"I ask you, a population that is 1/3 the population compared to 2% on the West Coast, a Territory with some of the most vital military bases, which area would you think would require evacuation if the claims were true?

Hawaii would, except for the security controls applied under martial law.
"When the Army formed the 442 RCT in 1943,...volunteers were about 1500 men from each area, the Mainland didn't quite make its quota...

You bet it didn't. Only 1200 volunteered out of 19,000 of military age

"Hawaii had about 10,000 apply, I wonder why.

Who knows? Maybe to get away from martial law
.

"Congress spent about 5 year on reparations... the majority of Congress agreed that the West Coast evacuation & incarceration was due to Racism, War Hysteria, & Lack of Political Leadership.

Those were the words in the report of the political Commission set up to study the matter. The conflict of interest in the Commission membership and staff was a disgrace. Congress approved the report under political pressure of a JA lobbying group set up seeking redress and monetary reparations. Notably three of Congress' most liberal Senators did not vote for the payoff. Gore, Biden, and
the late Ted Kennedy.

"In the Courts during the 1980's, AJA lawyers battled the Justice Department to vacate the conviction of the 9066 dissenters....

It wasn't much of a battle. The government made only a "show' of defense because of political considerations. There were only two cases. One was Korematsu who was not a dissenter. He was arrested in disguise after plastic surgery. His motivation was to avoid evacuation so he could elope with his Caucasian girlfriend. The other case was Hirabyashi which the govermentbungled by not properly preparing evidence for trial so the judge would not allow it to be presented. The cases were superficial since they amounted only to throwing out the wartime convictions but not the Supreme Court decisions upholding the government wartime actions under which the original arrests were made.

No AJA was ever convicted of espionage in WWII.

No cases were brought because legal discovery would have revealed the top secret means by which evidence was being obtained, namely the MAGIC cryptographic program with which we were reading much of pre-war Japanese coded messages between Tokyo and its embassy and consulates in the U.S.


Ralph Willis

Having read all above comments, I must---in the interest of historica TRUTH ,totally agree with Wm Hopwood. As the President Emeritus of Americans for Historical Accuracy (Americans for historical AccuraCY.com)I am very knowledgable in the WWI era detainment of Japanes, Germena & Italian ENEMies of our country--as was our President. Muller and Greg Robinson, both listed as "marxist professors", in every statement they utter, show their collective hatred of America. Disregarding the trials of Koromatsu
thruout our court system : local Supreme Courts, repealant courts, Federal Courts and finally The U.S.Supreme Court-----ALL foung in favor of the U.S. Government case--The Exclusion and relocation/internment of West Coast Japanese WAS LEGAL and CONSTITUTIONAL.......Why do Muller and Robinson et,el continue their collective continual BITCHING ?.........

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