Excerpts from the Senate Journal of April 16, 1945
containing portions of the report of
the Committee on
Having special reference to
JACK B. TENNEY, Chairman
HUGH M. BURNS
NELSON S. DILWORTH
JESSE RANDOLPH KELLEMS, PH.D
RANDAL F. DICKEY
Published by the
STATE OF CALIFORNIA
REPORT OF THE JOINT FACT-FINDING COMMITTEE ON UN-AMERICAN ACTIVITIES IN CALIFORNIA
Mr. President, Mr. Speaker, and Members of the Legislature:
Your Joint Fact-Finding Committee Investigating Un-American Activities in California herewith submits its report on investigations conducted throughout the State during 1943 and 1944:
The Joint Fact-Finding Committee on Un-American Activities in California was created pursuant to Assembly Concurrent Resolution No. 59, filed with the Secretary of State May 12, 1943.
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Pursuant to the provisions of the resolution, the Committee on Rules of the Senate appointed Senator Hugh M. Burns of Fresno County and Senator Jack B. Tenney of Los Angeles County, and the Speaker of the Assembly appointed Assemblyman Nelson S. Dilworth of Hemet, Dr. Jesse Randolph Kellems of Bel-Air, and Randal F. Dickey of Alameda, as members of the committee. In compliance with the provisions of the resolution the members of the committee, at its organizational meeting, elected Senator Jack B. Tenney as chairman.
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JAPANESE PROBLEMS IN CALIFORNIA
Since submitting its report to the Legislature in 1943 the committee has continued its investigation of Japanese subversive activities as far as such activities were evident in the various relocation centers in California. On March 5, 1942, Lieutenant General John L. DeWitt issued an order for the evacuation of all persons of Japanese descent from the area of the Western Defense Command. Temporary Reception Centers were quickly erected under the supervision of Army engineers and, shortly thereafter, construction was commenced on the two relocation centers for California, Manzanar and Tulelake [all instances hereafter: Tule Lake]. On March 21, 1942, the first contingent of evacuees, 61 men and 21 women, arrived at Manzanar. By midsummer of that year there were nearly 10,000 evacuees at Manzanar and 14,000 at Tule Lake.
CALIFORNIA RELOCATION CENTERS
Manzanar is located near Independence in Inyo County. Tule Lake is located in Modoc County near the Oregon State line. The physical appearance of the two relocation centers present much the same aspect. Each is sprawled over a flat, barren plain, partly surrounded by mountains. The summer winds constantly blow clouds of fine dust across these plains and during the winter months there is much rain and snow. The barracks are long, narrow, board and batten structures with black tar-paper roofs. Wooden partitions divide these barracks into small compartments, each of which is theoretically occupied by an evacuee family. The mess halls are replicas of the barracks without the partitions.
Each center maintains an agricultural project. A program of vocational training and adult education is provided in both camps. The State Law for compulsory education of children of school age is enforced. Internal security and fire-fighting departments are organized and maintained. Each center has cooperative stores where evacuees may purchase a wide variety of general merchandise, none of which carries ration-point requirements. [PHOTO: "The magazine counter at one of the cooperative stores in the Amache Relocation Center." (12/11/1942)]
Both administrative project and department is headed by a Caucasian supervisor. Virtually all of the work is done by the evacuees, on a voluntary basis. They are compensated for their labors at a monthly rate which has a maximum of $19. The rate is considered entirely inadequate by the evacuees and, as a consequence, the work done is accomplished more by sheer weight of numbers than by individual endeavor. Labor strikes occur sporadically and there is a constant stream of labor complaints. Attempts at beautification of the camps have been made by the evacuees and a lovely landscaped Japanese garden was noted near a mess hall at Manzanar.
The agricultural project at Manzanar presented many difficulties. The first crew started work on April 15, 1942, grubbing out the rocks and sage brush, and preparing the soil for planting. During the latter part of May of that year the crops were planted. When the first green shoots appeared they were promptly nibbled back level to the earth by rabbits, until the vegetable garden resembled, from a distance, an extensive and close-clipped lawn. This annoyance was solved by the use of dogs that were trained to chase the rabbits away. Several hundred acres are now under cultivation. The crops raised at Manzanar during the past season had a market value estimated at $43,000. Surplus crops are shipped to other centers.
There are about 4,000 acres under cultivation at Tule Lake. The season in Modoc County is comparatively short because of early frost and snow, but during the spring and summer months the crops are easily and abundantly produced. The total commercial value of the current crop is estimated at $1,500,000. The surplus, like the surplus at Manzanar, is shipped to other centers. Hogs and chickens are also raised at Tule Lake on an extensive scale.
Each center has a detachment of military police. Until a short time ago these men were charged with the duty of quelling serious disturbances, keeping the evacuees within the confines of the center, and, generally, in maintaining order. They are not permitted however, within the boundaries of the centers. This force of military police is supplemented by the Department of Internal Security, or center police force, which is headed by a Caucasian with prior police experience, and a staff of evacuee enforcement officers. The center directors have exclusive jurisdiction over infractions of center rules and regulations and may impose reasonable and legal penalties for violations. Violators of State and Federal laws are turned over to the proper authorities.
National food rationing released a flood of rumors concerning the food served the Japanese in the relocation centers. It was frequently charged that the evacuees were receiving food of an exceptionally high quality and of high ration-point value. Investigation of these charges by representatives of the committee disclosed that the basic means of all relocation centers were prepared by the Quartermaster's Corps of the United States Army and that each center was allowed a maximum expenditure of 45 cents per day for each evacuee. The average expenditure for the two centers in California runs around 37 cents per day per evacuee.
The committee representatives selected mess halls at random in each center and ate several meals with the evacuees. The found the food well cooked, nourishing and plentiful. The following sample menus are typical of the meals served at Manzanar and Tule Lake:
It will be noted that the relocation center diet consists mainly of rice, vegetables, fish, bread, oleomargarine (no butter), with such occasional Japanese dishes a Tsukemono (pickled vegetables) and Sukiyaki (a sort of Japanese chop suey).
"Luncheon serving...Menu: Baked macaroni with Spanish sauce, spinach, pickled beets, bread-pudding, tea, bread and butter." (Minidoka12/09/1942)
Choice of food is a source of constant evacuee complaint and grievance. The American-born Japanese are accustomed to American food while most of the alien Japanese are accustomed to native dishes. It is manifestly impossible to please both groups, although, as will be seen from the sample menus, certain native dishes are prepared and served. The evacuees are permitted to buy additional food at the cooperative stores, but, as has been mentioned heretofore, they are not permitted to purchase anything which requires ration points.
Until about January 1, 1943, the administration of the centers was very lax. The evacuees were permitted to wander unattended practically at will all over the adjacent countryside. This practice was bitterly resented by residents in the vicinity of the centers and this resentment toward the administration still exists to some extent. The laxity of early administration manifested itself in what appeared to be pampering of the evacuees and an apathy toward their subversive activities. An example of this lax attitude was seen in the practice of permitting evacuees at Tule Lake to use Government cars as free taxis within the area of the Center, and in the use of Government trucks to take groups of evacuees on picnics outside the Center. No attempt was made to separate the obviously subversive and disloyal from the obviously loyal. After January 1, 1943, the situation changed considerably and the centers in California were administered with a firmer hand.
Optional courses in Americanism are offered as a part of the adult educational program but they might as well be discontinued for they are very poorly attended. There are no compulsory Americanism courses. It was learned that the evacuees are not particularly encouraged to speak English. Many who spoke good English when they first arrived at the centers now speak it poorly, because, since arriving, they have spoken mostly in their native tongue.
For a time, all out-going and in-coming mail was censored by the military police. This practice was discontinued, and in 1943 it was possible for express packages, letters and parcel-post packages to be sent into the relocation centers without inspection. Telephone conversations between the evacuees and persons outside the Centers were not censored at all. Manzanar appeared to be the lone exception in telephone censorship.
The Japanese terms, Issei, Nisei and Kibei, are defined and explained in the Committee's 1943 Report at page 322. Briefly re-stated, the Issei are alien Japanese, virtually all of whom are loyal to Japan and Hirohito. Fanatical in their belief in the Shinto-Kodo-Bushido dogmas, they keep pretty much to themselves in the relocation centers. The Nisei are second-generation, American-born sons and daughters of Japanese alien parents and, therefore, citizens of the United States. The greater part of the Nisei have attended the public schools on the west coast, and the majority of them attended Japanese language schools. The Kibei are Nisei (second-generation, American-born Japanese) who have been sent to Japan, allegedly for educational purposes. During their stay in Japan the Kibei were indoctrinated with the Shinto-Kodo-Bushido virus and, as a general rule, feel a deep loyalty to everything Japanese. The ideology of Kadoism, like the doctrine of race-superiority of the German Nazis, dominates the minds of the present generation of alien Japanese and the Kibeis. Until Pearl Harbor the Issei, holding the purse strings, exerted considerable influence over the Nisei and Kibei and kept them pretty much in "Kodo" ("the way of the Emperor").
Shintoism is Japan's most ancient religious faith. In its primitive form it exalted the deities of nature and fertility and emphasized the sacredness of the family. Animistic in character, Shintoism created a multitude of local gods and taught that they were embedded in the mountains, trees and stones. Worship of the Emperor, the sacredness of the family, and the exaltation of the military were closely identified with the ceremonies of Shintoism from its inception. The ancient rice culture of the people was closely interwoven in ancient Shintoism. Obedience to authority and devotion to the Emperor were sternly emphasized. The Shinto creed has been merged with the State since the "restoration" of the Emperor in 1868, and is now particularly characterized by its aggressive nationalism, its authoritarianism, and its militaristic faith.
It is taught and believed that the Japanese islands were begotten of the gods, that the Emperor of Japan is a direct descendant of the Goddess of the Sun. It is believed that the present Japanese race, as the descendants of a single tribe of Yamato, are destined to inhabit these God-begotten islands forever. The rest of the world is to feel the benevolence of this divine Yamato race. Because the islands were literally begotten of the gods, the land is "holy," and will endure forever. A Japanese soldier who dies for the Emperor and his "holy" country, immediately becomes one with the gods, regardless of how badly he may have lived. The outside world can only be redeemed through Japanese intervention. The great Shinto virtues for the Japanese people are blind and undying loyalty and unquestioning obedience. All people, other than the Japanese, are considered corrupt and inferior.
Shintoism has become the State religion of Japan. Doctor Shunzo Sakamaki, assistant professor of history at the University of Hawaii, pointed out that the Japanese Imperial Government had issued an edict declaring that all Shinto priests in the United States and Hawaii, and Japanese language school teachers were, from January 1941, to be considered as officials of the Japanese Government. "Basically," said Doctor Sakamaki, "the reason is that the Japanese Government has seen in Shinto a political tool of the greatest potency for keeping the fires of nationalism burning at white heat and making the doctrine of political absolutism in Japan virtually inviolable."
General Araki, the leader of the Manchurian conquest, gave life and emphasis to Japanese Imperialism by popularizing Kodo, "the way of the Emperor," in the program of "Asia for Asiatics" and the "Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere." Thus, Kodo, as an extension of Shintoism, provides the justification of Japanese world conquest. "The way of the Emperor," since the first Emperor, Jimmu Tenno, who descended directly from the Goddess of the Sun, is the plan to carry out the "divine destiny" of the Japanese people in extending their "culture" to all of the people of the earth. This "benevolence" is first to be extended to the colored peoples of Asia by freeing them from the domination of the white races.
Bushido is the unwritten code of conduct of the Samurai. Bushido demands loyalty to superiors only, simplicity of living and military valor. Complete allegiance to superiors is demanded, while deceit and dishonor is to be honorably practiced against all others. Treachery and brutality against one's enemies, and self-sacrifice, blind loyalty and unquestioning obedience to one's superiors are the cardinal characteristics of the code of Bushido.
PROBLEM OF RELOCATION DURING THE WAR
It is generally believed that the Japanese are a stoical and phlegmatic people. Expert opinion, on the contrary, holds that they are a highly emotional and temperamental people. It is interesting to note in this connection that the clinical records of the two relocation centers indicate that the most common evacuee ailment is peptic ulcers, caused by worry and fear. The loyal, or potentially loyal, Nisei, read accounts in the daily newspapers of the action of many and sundry organizations passing resolutions to the effect that no persons of Japanese descent, citizen or alien, will ever be tolerated again in California. Leaflets and pamphlets find their way into the centers and are read by the American-born Japanese. Many are firmly convinced that they will not be welcome or wanted in California and, for this reason, have been, and are, refusing to apply for relocation because of the fear of physical injury to themselves and their families no matter where they may go. The recent order of Dillon Myer for the closing of all relocation centers by December 31, 1945, was received with alarm by most Japanese evacuees. The committee has learned from authentic sources that delegations of Japanese have called on the center directors, requesting that some action be taken for the continuation and maintenance of the centers for the duration of the war with Japan. Japanese evacuee spokesmen base their request on several grounds. First, they fear physical injury if they are returned to their former communities while the war with Japan is in progress. Secondly, nearly all leases on evacuee property are for "the duration of the war with Japan," and, thirdly, the housing problem for some 60,000 to 80,000 Japanese in their former communities is fraught with insurmountable difficulty and hardship.
The Japanese very rarely entered into the life of the American community in which they resided. "Little Tokyos" invariably mushroomed into existence wherever a substantial Japanese population existed. More than 240 Japanese language schools were established and maintained in California alone.
The committee is convinced that it was not merely coincidental that the Japanese population settled along the West Coast near airfields, oil refineries, vital war plants and gun emplacements. The desirability of the land alone does not account for this deployment as, in many cases, more fertile and desirable farm land was available.
The Yokohama Specie Bank is sponsored by the Japanese Imperial Government. Before the war huge transfers of money through the Yokohama Specie Bank from the United States to Japan was a frequent occurrence. These "deposits" aggregated in excess of twenty millions of dollars. Testimony and evidence before the committee indicates that Japanese residents in California contributed many thousands of dollars to the Japanese war effort before Pearl Harbor.
Togo Tanaka testified openly and frankly concerning Nisei activities (Com. Tr., Vol. X. pp. 2843-2889). His testimony, in part, is as follows (Com. Tr., Vol. X. pp. 2856-2858):
Q. By Mr. Combs: ...Mr. Tanaka, as a matter of fact, the Japanese Consulate sponsored the dissemination of a great mass of material regarding the Japanese attitude -- the Sino-Japanese war?The committee offers no particular brief for the Nisei as a class. Evidence before the committee clearly reveals that many of the Nisei were engaged in subversive activities against the Government of the United States for many months prior to the attack on Pearl Harbor. The committee is equally aware that an American-born person of Japanese parentage is not necessarily subversive per se. The problem is essentially one of segregation and it presents many subtle difficulties.
When General De Witt's order for Japanese evacuation was announced many Nisei, who had established businesses and homes, were compelled to dispose of their property in a very short period of time, as best they could. They were to be housed in relocation centers in remote parts of the country for an indefinite period. Deep emotional reaction to the disruption of normal life was only natural and to be expected. Some of the Nisei became embittered and resentful while others remained realistic and resigned to a situation which they understood as necessary and unavoidable. The Issei and Kibei were openly defiant and recalcitrant. Most of them have now adopted an attitude of solemn brooding. The committee believes that if the War Relocation Authority had segregated these groups in the beginning much trouble and difficulty might have been avoided. Late in 1943 the War Relocation Authority, finally recognizing the problem, announced that it would segregate the loyal from the disloyal Japanese. This was ultimately accomplished by removing the disloyal Japanese to the Relocation Center at Tule Lake. The War Relocation Authority test of loyalty and disloyalty in the segregation program is not available and has not been explained.
Questionnaires were prepared and distributed to the evacuees in all the relocation centers by the War Relocation Authority in the early spring of 1943. Question No. 28 inquired whether or not the evacuee was willing to renounce his allegiance to the Emperor of Japan. An epidemic of rioting immediately broke out at the Tule Lake Center and continued for nearly six weeks. So few of the evacuees answered Question 28 in the affirmative that the War Relocation Authority reworded that particular inquiry, labeled it No. 28-A and tried again. The question this time did not concern itself with allegiance to the Emperor of Japan, but merely inquired whether or not the evacuee would be willing to uphold the laws of the United States. Assemblyman Dickey, in charge of the Tule Lake investigation, reported that the had been informed that although there were 6,000 to 7,000 evacuees who were American citizens by accident of birth and whose physical qualifications made them eligible for service in the armed forces of the United States, only two volunteered. It is rather significant to note that the Bushido code permits deceit and treachery as honorable conduct under such circumstances, and that disloyal and subversive Japanese would, therefore, unhesitatingly answer either or both questions in the affirmative.
The attitude of defiance on the part of the disloyal Japanese at Tule Lake can only be explained on the basis of some real or imagined advantage for Japanese war strategy. Mr. Silverman, staff writer for the San Francisco Chronicle, was at the Tule Lake Center investigating the disturbances which attended the signing of the questionnaires, and in the May 27, 1943, issue of that newspaper he reported, in part, as follows:
" * * * Before the end of the trouble bands of hoodlums roamed up and down the camp's streets, breaking into homes and attacking the occupants. The Japanese * * * who were in cooperation with the administration were nearly killed, and two Christian Priests were badly beaten. A Jap flag mysteriously appeared and, as mysteriously, disappeared. The army moved in, followed by the F.B.I. There were mass arrests, and one hundred men were thrown into near-by jails and deserted C. C. C. Camps. When the prisoners were carried off they were surrounded by howling Japanese who yelled, 'Banzai!'
The central figure of the December, 1942, disturbance at the Relocation Center at Manzanar was Fred Masaru Tayama. Tayama testified before the committee in Los Angeles on Japanese activities, March 24, 1942. (Com. Trans. Volume X, pp. 2961-2965.) He was born in Honolulu. He attended the A. R. Muir Institute of Technology in Chicago. He formerly was the chairman of the Southern California District Council of the Japanese-American Citizens League. Shortly after December 7, 1941, Tayama called a meeting of certain American-born Japanese leaders and organized an anti-Axis Committee. An intelligence unit was created in order to assist governmental investigative authorities in their work. This prompt and laudable action on the part of Fred Tayama made many dangerous enemies for him among the disloyal and subversive Japanese.
Fred Tayama's demeanor on the witness stand when testifying before the committee in Los Angeles, was above-board, open and frank. (Digest of Tayama's testimony appears on pages 344 to 346 in the committee's 1943 Report.) At that time he proudly exhibited a document from the Japanese consul given to him at his insistence, proving his complete expatriation from Japan. He testified that although he was born in Honolulu, he was considered a citizen of Japan in 1923 and subject to Japanese military duty. He was advised to apply to the Japanese Consul General for extension or exemption of military service. He is one of the few American-born Japanese known to the committee who took the necessary steps for the cancellation of the Japanese side of his dual citizenship.
The New World supplement for Sunday, December 13, 1942, in the San Francisco Chronicle printed the following story:
"Last week, nine-month old Manzanar produced its first political incident. Using descriptive, excitable adjectives and worded carefully so as not to over-emphasize isolated trouble, the War Relocation Authority described the occurrence: 'Saturday night six men entered the residence of Fred Tayama, (President of the Japanese American League), and beat him so severely that he was taken to the hospital. Immediately three evacuees were taken into custody, and one of them was transferred to the jail at nearby Independence. The next morning crowds gathered in the Center streets, and selected a committee which met with Camp Director Ralph P. Merritt at the main gate and asked for the return of the jailed men. Merritt agreed that the evacuees would be brought back to Manzanar if the committee would agree that there would be no more meetings or gatherings, that order would be maintained until the proper hearing could be held, and if the group would deliver to the authorities the men who had beaten Tayama.The excitement ended as abruptly as it started. War Relocation Authority National Director, E. R. Fryer, arrived from Washington and laid down the law. Segregation of known Axis sympathizers and unruly elements followed immediately. Center Director Ralph P. Merritt, a veteran of the first World War, who had just taken over as Camp Director a few days before the disturbances commenced, announced "Peace and quiet prevail."
The evacuee-edited Manzanar Free Press in its anniversary issue of March 20, 1943, comments on the "incident" in the following language:
"This basic calm that Manzanar residents had been enjoying was disrupted unfortunately by the 'riot' of December 6th, which was aggravated by the newspaper accounts that stressed only the sensational aspects of the event. The emotional outburst was an inevitable outcome of the internal strife caused largely by the concentrated nature of the population. The fact that other centers have had strife and difficulties reflects on the basic difficulty of any group to maintain a normal life under crowded conditions. Since the date of the Manzanar trouble coincided with Pearl Harbor, 1941, the public press has ample opportunity to misinterpret the essential facts. The sheer coincidence of the date is, perhaps, the most unfortunate aspect of the whole thing."The committee is convinced that the disturbance falling on the anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor was the result of something far more serious than "sheer coincidence." The crowded condition of the evacuees in Manzanar on December 6, 7 and 8, 1942, was not the lone factor responsible for the demonstration of defiance. As for the newspapers stressing only the sensational aspects of the event, the committee submits that it would be indeed difficult to imagine anything more sensational than a three-day demonstration of rioting Japanese evacuees accompanied by tear gas and military police shooting into the mob in order to restore order. The committee believes that the disloyal Japs in Manzanar conspired to take vengeance on Tayama for his pro-American attitude, and, at the same time, intimidate other potentially loyal Nisei and the administrative staff at the Center with a demonstration on the anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.
TULE LAKE DISTURBANCES
By October, 1943, the War Relocation Authority had apparently completed its task of segregating the loyal from the disloyal evacuees. The disloyal evacuees were sent to Tule Lake Center and the allegedly loyal evacuees at Tule Lake were distributed among the other relocation centers throughout the United States. It is estimated that there were around 16,000 disloyal Japanese at Tule Lake Relocation Center as of January 1, 1945.
Committee members and representatives made five separate trips to the Tule Lake Center. The atmosphere at the Camp was tense, the Japanese were sullen and antagonistic and it was apparent to everyone that some sort of trouble was in the making.
Japanese spokesmen called upon the Camp Director Raymond Best and announced that the Japanese would no longer pick vegetables for Caucasians or for the loyal Japanese. They stated that they were aware that crop surpluses were distributed to other Relocation Center, and that, henceforth, the only vegetables which would be picked by the evacuees at Tule Lake would be for their own consumption. Mr. Best, in order to comply with the War Relocation Authority's order and to fill the obligation of the United States Government, sent members of the Caucasian staff of the Relocation Center into the fields to help with the crops and purchased additional supplies when needed. [PHOTO: "Raymond R. Best, Tule Lake Center Director." (07/1943)]
Japanese spokesmen then demanded that they be allowed to use coal for bonfires while harvesting, and when Relocation officials acceded to this demand, tons of coal were consumed in this manner while the Nation faced an acute coal shortage.
The head of the fire department at Tule Lake, formerly a battalion chief of the Los Angeles Fire Department, was next bombarded with a series of outrageous demands. The first was for a certain type of rubber glove. Those were obtained. A pool table for the members of the fire department was next in order and when this demand was refused the members went on what might be considered a sit-down strike, completely disrupting the fire-fighting department. They refused to use blankets or pillows that had been touched by loyal Japanese, and demanded new bed clothes which were secured. An epidemic of false fire alarms ensued. Nearly every piece of fire-fighting apparatus taken from the fire house broke down because of some mechanical defect. Fire hydrants were found to be rammed full of broken glass, bits of cloth and other debris, so that they failed to function. It was later discovered that $50,000 worth of automatic fire alarm apparatus had been ripped out of the building which housed it, and as far as the committee has been able to ascertain, it has never been found.
On the afternoon of November 1, 1943, a delegation of spokesmen for the subversive Japanese, called upon Director Best in the administration building and presented a series of demands which he was utterly unable to grant. Shortly thereafter all the Caucasians working in the Relocation Center, about 200 persons, were herded into the administration building where they were imprisoned for about four hours, while a mob of howling Japanese, armed with daggers, swords and clubs, milled around outside the building, shouting obscenities at the Caucasian women and loudly proclaiming their disloyalty to the United States. Colonel Verne Austin and his troops arrived by this time and were posted just outside the barbed-wire fence. The Japanese had mysteriously obtained a loud-speaking apparatus and a microphone. They had previously used a short-wave receiving set, made from parts which were sent into Tule Lake without being inspected by Relocation authorities. While the conference with Director Best was in progress and the Caucasian staff was imprisoned inside the building, the milling mob on the outside were addressed in Japanese over the public address system and informed on the progress of the conference. When two Caucasians attempted to leave the building they were beaten and forced inside again. [PHOTO: "View of the Administration Building at this relocation center." (Tule Lake, 09/10/1942)]
It later developed that the knives and swords with which the rioters had armed themselves had been made from steel truck springs, deliberately broken when trucks were driven over rough stretches of road. When the springs had been replaced by new ones the old springs were taken to the blacksmith shop operated by Japanese-Americans and made into swords and knives.
When the conference with the director was concluded, a Shinto priest stepped to the microphone and said something in Japanese. Immediately the mob suddenly faced the east, removed their hats, bowed three times and went back to their barracks.
The following day, November 2d, was quiet and peaceful. On November 3d there were several minor disturbances. At a little after 10 o'clock on the evening of November 4th, rioting again broke out.
Boxes had been filled with pieces of mattress and bits of dry grass soaked with stove oil and placed under most of the wooden buildings in the center. The caps had been removed from the gasoline tanks on all of the automobiles and trucks, and the vehicles had been placed at right angles to the center gates, thus creating an effective blockade to entrances and exits. Colonel Austin's troops, with light tanks, armored cars, and fixed bayonets, moved in through the barricaded entrances and within a matter of minutes the area was cleared of the rioting Japanese. The leaders of the demonstration were taken into custody and order was restored.
A few days later spokesmen for the rioting Japanese called upon Colonel Austin. They again declared that they would only harvest crops for their own consumption. Colonel Austin told them, in substance, to either pick the crops in accordance with the War Relocation Authority policy or continue their strike. The crops were promptly harvested and there was no more trouble.
A study of the November rioting at Tule Lake revealed a number of important factors not easily discerned by a cursory examination of the facts. It is apparent, when the facts are analyzed, that if the Japanese had actually planned to burn down the buildings, kill or injure the Caucasian administrative personnel that they had ample opportunity to do so under cover of darkness. It must be remembered that Colonel Austin and his troops were just outside the camp and were able to watch every move of the Japanese. In spite of this fact, of which they were well aware, they staged the first demonstration at 1 p.m. on November 1st. They went so far as to install a public address system so that every word broadcast was well within earshot of the military authorities. The following day the Japanese were obviously apprehensive that something would be done to penalize them for imprisoning the administrative staff for four hours in their own buildings. Colonel Austin and his troops remained outside the enclosure and life appeared to go on as usual within the Center. On November 3d they launched another series of minor disturbances. It is significant to note that the disturbances of November 1st and November 3d occurred in broad daylight in full view of Colonel Austin and his troops. The riots of November 4th was launched at about 10 o'clock in the evening. The Japanese had taken elaborate precautions to make it perfectly clear to anyone that it was their intention to burn the wooden buildings in the Center. Boxes of inflammable material had been prepared and placed under the buildings, the camps had been removed from gasoline tanks of all civilian-owned automobiles, as well as from the cars and trucks in the Center's motor pool, and vehicles had been carefully placed to block the entrances and exits of the Center. When the actual rioting started, Colonel Austin and his men moved in promptly. The demonstration abruptly ceased.
Committee investigators are convinced that the Japanese at Tule Lake were quite familiar with the legal phases of the situation in which they found themselves, and that the demonstrations of November, 1943, were deliberately designed to provoke these legal questions and at the same time create propaganda material against the United States for the use of the Imperial Japanese government. The Japanese performance during the four-hour period, heretofore described, had all of the aspects of a well-planned dramatic production. While clubs were waved in the air, knives and swords brandished, addresses made over a public-address system, and the entire Caucasian personnel kept imprisoned in the administration building, no serious damage was done. Although the boxes of inflammables were carefully placed under the wooden barracks, nobody had a match to start the conflagration. It might logically have been expected that the Army would have immediately moved in and taken control, thus placing the United States Government in the anomalous position of making prisoners of war out of its own citizens. The committee believes that these disturbances at Tule Lake were carefully staged for this purpose.
The members of the committee, as well as many informed persons in the State and Nation, while recommending segregation of the loyal Japanese from the disloyal, looked upon the War Relocation Authority's decision to establish a center for disloyal Japanese in California as ill-advised.
One of the committee's investigators reported on this subject August 6, 1943:
"That this State was teeming with Japanese activities for years prior to Pearl Harbor is an established fact. That the Army is convinced that no person of Japanese descent should be permitted in the State, at least for the duration of the war, is manifest from the evacuation order itself. It is conceded by everyone familiar with the facts that there are several thousand fanatically subversive evacuees both at Manzanar and Tule Lake Centers. California has tremendous industrial facilities turning out the materials of war on a gigantic scale. The aircraft factories of California have turned out nearly 40 per cent of all the Nation's planes. Throughout the State are shipyards, chemical plants, mills, military and naval installations, embarkation ports and air bases. It was not so long ago that anti-aircraft batteries were firing at enemy planes in Southern California, that an enemy submarine hurled its shells into oil installations off the coast near Santa Barbara, and that ships were being sunk almost within sight of the coast off Santa Cruz and Monterey. If there is any State in the Union that should be entirely free of subversive Japanese, that State is California. Yet, with eight other centers in the United States, the Relocation Authority has recently announced that it intends to gather together all of the subversive evacuees and place them in Tule Lake Center, Modoc County, California.Despite a flood of protests and resolutions of organizations such as the American Legion and the Native Sons of the Golden West, civic organizations and Legislative committees, the War Relocation Authority proceeded with its program to make Tule Lake a center for subversive Japanese evacuees exclusively. A result of this decision and action was the three-day riot which occurred in November of 1943. The committee is pleased to note the recent decision of the Government in moving these subversive evacuees from Tule Lake to various Japanese prison camp centers.
THE RELOCATION CENTER AT POSTON
Committee representatives undertook to investigate reliable reports of Japanese evacuees coming into California across the Arizona border at Parker, Arizona, despite the order of General De Witt barring all persons of Japanese descent from most of the California area for the duration of the war. The only exception to this rule was by permission of the Army.
The War Relocation Center at Poston is near Parker, Arizona. The committee learned that parties of evacuees were in the habit of driving Government trucks and were observed on picnic parties at points from 14 to 22 miles from the center. It was not unusual for parties of evacuees, driving Government trucks from Poston, to visit cocktail lounges. Large slabs of laminated rock covered with century-old Indian hieroglyphics, were pried loose with crowbars and hammers in the Arizona desert and transported to Poston for Japanese fish ponds. Parties of Japanese evacuees journeyed by Government truck to the town of Parker on shopping tours. Government trucks from Poston, driven by evacuees, came to Parker daily to pick up hundreds of railway-express packages at the platform of the Santa Fe railway station. The packages were taken back to the center and distributed to the addressees without inspection by the center authorities.
Committee investigators met the trains that stop at the Santa Fe station at Parker and on several occasions took photographs of Japanese who were visiting friends in the Relocation Center. Japanese evacuees boarded the train at Parker and rode into California, either to points within the State or for destinations out of the State via some California junction point. The railroad followed a route on the California side through a large area of desert country where American tank forces were holding dress rehearsals for battle.
The committee had been informed, prior to this investigation, that Japanese evacuees had been coming into California by walking across the sand-bars at a low point in the Colorado River. The citizenry of Parker, Arizona, and witnesses on the California side of the river laughed when their report was repeated to them. The committee learned that the Japanese merely drove across the bridge from the Arizona side to the California side and made no attempt whatever to conceal their movements. They were never accompanied by civilian employees of the Relocation Center or by Caucasian guards.
COMMUNIST POLICY ON THE JAPANESE
American Communists are guided in every detail by the policy of the Soviet Union. Moscow is the modern mecca of these Marxist dialecticians and Stalin is the prophet. Soviet Russia embodies, in the minds of all Communists, the first concrete accomplishment of revolutionary Marxism. Their ever-present objectives, still somewhat remote in the future, is the destruction of all capitalistic society and institutions and the creation of world Communism. The ultimate objective is to be reached only through the application of Marxian dialectic to the "day-by-day struggle." The masters of 'scientific" socialism, in the opinion of all Communists, are concentrated in Moscow. Hence the blind obedience and unquestioning loyalty to Soviet directives and Soviet policy.
The 1943 Report of the Committee called the Legislature's attention to the policy of American Communists during the Hitler-Stalin Pact, which ended abruptly with the invasion of Russia by Germany in June 1941. Up to the day of the invasion the American Communists were attacking President Roosevelt as a "war monger" and terming the European conflict as a "British imperialistic war." They organized and dominated the so-called American Peace Mobilization, called for an embargo on war material to belligerent countries, advocated an isolationist program for the United States and instituted a series of strikes in defense factories throughout the nation.
The continuous aerial bombing of London and Great Britain had no effect on the isolationist program of the American Communist. But when Hitler's hordes poured into the "holy land" of "Scientific Socialism" Communists everywhere were moved to vigorous action. President Roosevelt was a "war monger" no longer, the American Peace Mobilization and the isolationist program were forgotten. The epidemic of Communist-inspired strikes in defense plants and war industries abruptly ceased and the "British imperialistic war" over-night became a "People's war." They now clamored for the lifting of the embargo so that war materials could be made available to the Soviet Union. Without considering the cost in lives and materials, the time or the state of preparedness, the Communists set up cries for an immediate "Second front."
It was still nearly six months from December 7, 1941, when American Communist policy changed for the protection of the Socialist fatherland. The Japanese sneak attack on Pearl Harbor brought the United States sharply into line with Communist Party policy, although Russia continued at peace with Hirohito. Japan and Russia have remained at peace throughout the intervening months.
The attitude adopted by the American variety of Communist toward the Japanese in general and the Japanese evacuees in the Relocation Centers in particular, is partially explained by the fact that Japan and Russia have remained at peace. The policy or "line" directives, since early in 1942 projected from the Communist Party viewpoint, would read as follows:
"All Communists are ordered to minimize the Japanese danger. All large military efforts in the United States must be directed to Europe. Our immediate task is the defeat of Hitler and the protection of the Soviet Union. Smear anyone who advocates major activities against Japan at the present time. Our historic course with Japan will be determined at the conclusion of the war with Germany. Meanwhile our traditional role as the champions of racial equality must be maintained."This directive is clearly indicated in the columns of the Communist press, "The People's Daily World." Communist writers have constantly ridiculed the attempt of official legislative committees in their objective studies of the Japanese problem. Typical articles clearly indicating the current Communist policy on the Japanese question have appeared with significant frequency in Communist Party publications since the United States was treacherously attacked by Japan.
The "People's Daily World" for November 11, 1944, reported the Tule Lake Relocation Center disturbances, under the date line of November 3, 1943, as follows:
"EXAMPLE OF FIFTH COLUMN TECHNIQUEIt is of passing interest, and certainly a matter of deep significance, that the "People's Daily World," failed to carry stories of the November 4, 1943, rioting at Tule Lake. Magazines and newspapers all over the United States carried accounts of this demonstration. Committee members and attaches have been unable to find a single word in "The People's Daily World" on this event. The readers of the Communist publication were apparently to be left in the dark as to the true situation and were to believe that metropolitan accounts of the use of United States troops in quelling the riots were the "subversive lies" of "Nazi agents."
Current Communist Party policy on the Japanese question is indicated in an editorial by Communist John Pittman in "The People's Daily World" for Wednesday, July 21, 1943. "According to our coverage of the (Governor's) conference," the editorial states, "Governor Warren's sole contribution to the solution of the problems of the Nation and the world, now in the most critical period of history, was a claim that the release of the Japanese-Americans from the relocation centers in the west, had created a danger in the country... it bears the indelible stamp of an incorrigibly provincial mind, surveying the universe from the top of an ant hill, and that, through the wrong end of a telescope. Its pettiness is exceeded by only its falsities, for in actual fact the release of loyal Japanese-Americans from Relocation Camps for integration in industry and the armed services has been a boon rather than a danger, to the war effort. More to the point, it smells of the 'Pacific first' dung-hill, explicitly minimizing the menace of Hitler, all too few of whose saboteurs amongst us have been tried."
The Communist Party had made converts among the Japanese population before Pearl Harbor. Soviet policy in the Far East and the ultimate objective of world communism will dictate the "scientific" policy for Communist treatment of the Japanese, both in the United States and abroad. The committee states unequivocally and without fear of contradiction by future events, that the American Communists will vociferously echo Soviet policy, both as to the Japanese war and postwar diplomacy. Meanwhile American Communists remain neatly balanced on Soviet neutrality, awaiting the Stalinistic determinism of Moscow's dialecticians and "the correct course to be pursued" as finally established by Kremlin metaphysicians. They will then leap into the fray on the side of the fence indicated by Marshal Stalin's pipe.
AMERICAN PRO-JAPANESE ORGANIZATIONS
The Committee has recognized a number of organizations composed entirely of American Caucasians manifesting great solicitude and concern for Japanese evacuees and frankly created in their behalf. Many of these organizations are quasi religious and pacific in character and concern themselves with conscientious objectors as well as with the Japanese. They declare that they are primarily concerned with the civil liberties of the Nisei, taking the attitude that the Federal Government is either unable or unwilling to protect them in these guarantees. Through spokesmen and literature these organizations have been, and are, diffusing a sticky-sweet atmosphere over the problem. Their spokesmen blandly state, and they announce by leaflet and pamphlet, that there is no evidence of the Japanese engaging in subversive activities before December 7, 1941. The evidence to the contrary is overwhelming. No less an authority than Saburo Kido, National President of the Japanese-American Citizens League, declared in the July 17, 1943, issue of the Pacific Citizen that "Japanese-Americans would be the first to deny that all of their members are 100 per cent loyal."
Togo Tanaka testified before the committee in Los Angeles early in 1942 (Com. Tr., Vol. X, pp. 2843-2889). His testimony is digested in the Committee's 1943 Report at page 332 to 336 inclusive. Tanaka is American-born. He attended Los Feliz Elementary School and the Thomas Starr King High School, Hollywood High School and the University of Southern California, where he majored in political science and from where he was graduated in 1936. Shortly thereafter he became the editor of the English section Japanese newspaper, "Rafu Shimpo," a Los Angeles publication with an extensive circulation throughout the entire Pacific Coast area. The paper was printed in the Japanese language for the greater part and, from time to time, the management published a Japanese directory. In 1941 the "Rafu Shimpo" issued a directory containing more than 500 pages setting forth material collected in the United States under the direction of the "Rafu Shimpo" staff. This material was sent to Japan where it was compiled and where the directory was printed. The names and addresses of thousands of Japanese, Issei, Nisei and Kibei, are contained in the volume. When Tanaka testified, the committee learned that several significant pages had been removed from the directory. The witness admitted that the publication was about 90 per cent subversive. The witness believed that most of the Japanese organizations in California were under the domination of the Issei.
The committee has been interested in charges made by certain pro-Japanese groups that West Coast opposition to the return of the Japanese emanates from Caucasian agricultural interests and that the opposition is founded on selfishness. As far as the committee and its investigators have been able to ascertain there is little or no factual basis to this charge. The latest official figures available (1940) indicate that although few industries are as highly competitive, Japanese competition was not a dominant factor in the produce and farming industry. In 1940, the three Western Pacific Coast States, California, Oregon and Washington, had a Japanese population of 112,353 or about 85 per cent of the National total. Only 45 per cent of that number were engaged in agriculture. In 1940 the California Bureau of Agricultural Economics estimated that there were only four crops in the State of which the Japanese produced in excess of 50 per cent of the total, namely, snap beans, cauliflower, celery and garlic. The Japanese operated about 6000 farms in the three West Coast States. This amounted to a little over 2 per cent of the total number of farms operated. In California, Oregon and Washington 97 per cent of the farms were operated by nationalities other than Japanese.
Much of Japanese farming was done by unpaid family workers. Available statistics indicate that most of these unpaid agricultural laborers were women and girls. The committee is informed that although Japanese women were only 1.5 per cent of all employed women in the Pacific Coast States, they represented 48 per cent of all unpaid family workers on West Coast farms. More than one out of five Japanese engaged in agriculture was an unpaid family worker.
The committee is also aware of the existence of certain organizations created for propaganda and activity against all Japanese, regardless of loyalty or disloyalty, or whether American or foreign-born. These organizations, through their spokesmen and literature, are as vociferous in their condemnation of all Japanese as the pro-Japanese organizations are in their behalf. They resort to vilification and appeal to war prejudices in a tirade of abuse against all persons of Japanese descent, branding all and sundry as "faithless, untrustworthy, irresponsible, inhuman, ungodly, soulless and disloyal!"
Somewhere between the hysteria of the vigorous anti-Jap groups and the naive pacifist-conscientious-objector pro-Jap group is the balance-bar of equity and justice for the American-born Japanese. About half-way between the extreme pro and con charges of both groups is the true story of the Japanese evacuation and the relocation centers in California. When the full story is told it will be filled with drama; with comedy and tragedy, with suffering and self-sacrifice, with villainy and heroism, with deep shadows and bright sunlight -- a story bewildering in its complexity of delicate problems.
THE JAPANESE-AMERICAN CITIZENS' LEAGUE
The Japanese-American Citizens League held its first annual conference in three years at Salt Lake City early in December of 1944. The conference had the endorsement of the War Relocation Authority. Dillon Myer was scheduled to speak, but did not appear. Official representatives of the Pacific Coast Committee on American Principles and Fair Play, Friends of the American Way, the Methodist Church and similar groups attended. The Caucasian delegates proposed a five-point program which was unanimously adopted. The program is as follows:
1. To restore to Japanese all rights lost as a result of evacuation.This program, of course, contemplates the lifting of all restrictions on the Japanese. This has practically been accomplished, as far as American-born Japanese are concerned, by the War Department on the revocation of its order excluding all Japanese from the Western Defense Area, and the Supreme Court's recent decision on the subject. The program to restore all losses sustained by the Japanese as a result of evacuation probably contemplates hundreds of civil suits against the Government for losses incurred by the sale of personal effects, household goods, real property, and the recovery of wages, salaries and profits due to loss of earning power for three years. The plan to bring suit against the Government for the recovery of wages, salaries and profits is said to have been discussed by the American Civil Liberties Union.
The Imperial Japanese Government, until Pearl Harbor, never relaxed its tenacious hold and influence over the lives of all Japanese in the United States, whether alien or American-born. Supplementing the psychological control exerted by fanatical ideologies, a direct hold and domination over all Japanese on the West Coast was established and maintained by an intricate web of interlocking associations. Some of these associations were business and industrial, while others were social. Virtually every Japanese was a member of several associations. They were generally linked, directly or indirectly, to the Japanese Consulate. No Japanese, whether American or foreign-born, dared disobey edicts of his association without jeopardizing his business or social existence.
The committee has heretofore pointed out that the Issei thoroughly control the thinking and the action of the Japanese population born in the United States. There have been some claims since the evacuation of the Japanese that this domination of the Nisei (American-born Japanese) by the Issei (foreign-born) has been broken and that the American-born Japanese are now free of the domination and guidance of parents born and indoctrinated with Japanism. The facts appear to contradict this claim.
It was announced that the delegates from the Heart Mountain (Wyoming) Relocation Center to the conference at Salt Lake City was an all-Issei delegation. There are many thousands of Japanese evacuees at Heart Mountain with a very large percentage of American-born Japanese. If the Issei domination no longer exists, why was it that a delegation of Issei (foreign-born) should be selected to attend a conference that purported to plan the future of the Japanese in the United States?
The committee is informed that as a result of its investigation unescorted Japanese are no longer permitted to enter this State from Arizona at will. Letters and packages addressed to alien Japanese or those evacuees suspected of disloyalty are now opened and inspected before being delivered to the addresses.
The committee does not contend, and never has contended, that all Japanese evacuees are disloyal to the United States. As a result of intensive investigation the committee finds that the great majority of Issei (foreign-born Japanese) are loyal to Japan. The committee believes that the Issei, for the greater part, if given the opportunity, would do everything in their power to further the war aims of Japan. The committee finds that the Kibei (American-born Japanese who have spent several years in Japan for purported educational purposes) are definitely in the "suspect" class as far as loyalty to the United States is concerned. The committee finds that the Nisei (American-born Japanese) were, to a great extent, engaged in pro-Japanese activities before Pearl Harbor. Many of these American-born Japanese are disloyal to the United States, while many of them have illustrated by their conduct since Pearl Harbor their loyalty to the land of their birth. Many of the Nisei have enlisted in the armed forces of the United States and have distinguished themselves as United States soldiers on the field of battle.
The committee believes that every American citizen of Japanese descent who has demonstrated his or her loyalty to the United States during these trying times should be extended every opportunity of developing their Americanism and taking their respective places in communities of their choosing with all the rights guaranteed to all American citizens.
The committee believes that the evaluation of the loyalty of any particular Japanese, Issei, Nisei or Kibei, should include a consideration of their conduct and activities both before and after Pearl Harbor. Allowances for the influence and domination of the Issei over the Nisei prior to December 7, 1941, should be made in such evaluation.
The committee is in possession of authentic reports of outstanding acts of heroism on the part of American-born Japanese in the armed forces of the United States, both in Europe and in the Pacific war against the Japanese. These men, and such Japanese as Tokie Slocum, who was made a citizen of the United States by a special act of Congress for his service in France with Sergeant York, should be honored as patriotic American citizens.
The committee believes that the only issue involved, is the issue of loyalty to the United States. It is not a question of race. It is only a question of Americanism.
Loyal American-born Japanese evacuees look upon their detention in the Relocation Centers as a necessary sacrifice for the land of their birth. They, better than any Caucasian, know that there are many among them who could not and should not be at large during the war. The War Relocation Authority is in the best position to pass judgment on the loyalty of this class of evacuee.
The committee is in possession of authentic information that the loyal Japanese evacuees prefer to wait for the end of the war before attempting to return to their former communities. In view of the recent Supreme Court decision and the attitude of United States Army officials, the committee believes that the Relocation Centers should be maintained for those evacuees who voluntarily elect to remain in them until the end of the war.
The Japanese people are fanatical in their faith that they are destined to conquer the world. They traditionally measure time in terms of generations and centuries, and reverses and defeats in the span of a single generation are merely incidents in the sweep of time, to be expected and endured. They are a "holy" race and their land is "holy," literally begotten of the gods. Their cause is "holy" because it is divinely inspired. Ultimate victory will be theirs because the gods have divinely ordained it. Unless Japan is utterly crushed and broken in this war and her power to make war forever destroyed, defeat will be regarded as a temporary set-back and the Japanese people will begin again to build methodically for another attempt at the destiny they believe their gods have planned for them.
* * * * * * *
JACK B. TENNEY, Chairman
HUGH M. BURNS
NELSON S. DILWORTH
JESSE RANDOLPH KELLEMS, Ph.D
RANDAL F. DICKEY
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