H.R. 3387, H.R. 4110, and H.R. 4322


JUNE 20, 21, 27, AND SEPTEMBER 12, 1984

Serial No. 90

Printed for the use of the Committee on Judiciary

40-176 O

For sale by the Superintendent of Documents, Congressional Sales Office
U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC 20402

64-273 O-86--1


PETER W. RODINO, JR., New Jersey, Chairman
DON EDWARDS, California
HENRY J. HYDE, Georgia

SAM B. HALL, Texas
MIKE SYNAR, Oklahoma
E. CLAY SHAW, JR., Florida


BARNEY FRANK, Massachusetts

GEO. W. CROCKETT, JR., Michigan


BRUCE A. MORRISON, Connecticut



HOWARD L. BERMAN, California


M. ELAINE MIELKE, General Counsel
GARNER J. CLINE, Staff Director
ALAN F. COFFEY, JR., Associate Counsel

SAM B. HALL, JR., Texas, Chairman

BARNEY FRANK, Massachusetts

HOWARD L. BERMAN, California

E. CLAY SHAW, JR., Florida

JANE S. POTTS, Assistant Counsel
STEVEN N. DOUGLAS, Assistant Counsel
DAVID L. KARMOL, Associate Counsel

NOTE: [Bracketed] text in original. This excerpt starts from page 412 of the record.


Mr. BENDETSEN. Mr. Chairman and gentlemen, the Supreme Court upheld Executive Order 9066 in Korematsu v. United States. I quote, "Korematsu was not excluded because of hostility to him or his race; he was because we are at war with the Japanese Empire and there is evidence of disloyalty." That is what the Supreme Court said, and it has never been overruled. So I think the committee should pay close attention to that.

Now to say that MAGIC was unknown to General DeWitt by my friend, Mr. Ennis -- we have known each other for 45 years, I guess.

Mr. HALL. You have both aged gracefully.

Mr. BENDETSEN. Thank you, sir. He does. I am just trying to emulate him, except in what he thinks about this case.

This is not something new at all. The most comprehensive study of this situation was made of events leading to Pearl Harbor were the hearings of the Joint Congressional Committee on the Investigation of the Pearl Harbor Attack. It is in your records, and you should refer to it. No one has since. There are 39 volumes. MAGIC was prominent in this considerations.

To say that General DeWitt did not know about MAGIC by my friend is a false statement, totally false. I know that it was. He didn't have the MAGIC translation because only a handful of people, the President of the United States, the Secretaries of War and Navy, Chief of Staff of the Army, the Chief of Naval Operations -- no intelligence officer had it because the Japanese Government would somehow find out that the code had been broken by the most unusual services of the intelligence officers of the Army and Navy in 1940. That was protected necessarily.

The MAGIC intelligence revealed that there were espionage nests among the persons of Japanese ancestry on the west coast, hundreds of them. The FBI didn't know that. The intelligence officers of the Army and Navy didn't know it. But that was the basis finally of General DeWitt's recommendation.

But the only man who could make this decision -- Mr. Ennis hasn't been an officer in the military. He says that the President of the United States would have no alternative. He would have a full alternative. He wasn't the kind of man who could be, as this Commission report and the bill says, a racist. That is slander and libel of the memory of President Roosevelt.

He had no alternative. There was an attack intended by the Japanese. They had wonderful military organizations. They intended to. We knew it. There was an attack on the way in the Battle of Midway, and we lost almost everything we had left and, by the narrowest of margin, intercepted that attempt.

Now, a member of the Commission, Justice Goldberg, said, "Now after all of these years, wouldn't you say that that was a mistake?" I said, "Justice Goldberg, if the President and the Secretaries of War and Navy, the Chiefs of Staff of the military services had known what you know now, yes, it would have been a hell of a mistake." But they didn't. There was no way you could concede that there would not be an attack upon the United States, and we had lost all our defenses. This committee should remember that. To say it was a mistake now is not doing justice to the facts.

That is the first part of my testimony.

I would have to add that when a nation defends itself in war, it is never possible to equate the various sacrifices its citizens and residents are compelled to suffer, willingly or otherwise. You gentlemen know that full well. There never has been a way in which thereafter all persons, all citizens and noncitizens are compensated for what they went through. It is regrettable, though that is the case.

I would like to read the order I had from General DeWitt. On a very memorable and uncomfortable moment, I was returning to the War Department in San Francisco and General DeWitt's aide ran up the steps and said "you have to come back." I was ushered into General DeWitt's office. In his presence were the Assistant Secretary of War, the Chief Staff of the Army, General Marshall. I will read this. He told me that "we have decided that you are to undertake what is necessary." I was informed by General DeWitt that General Marshall had promoted me to Colonel. I was then a Major.

Here is the order. This was made on the basis of Executive Order 9066. President Roosevelt delegated to the Secretary of War, to the Chief of Staff of the Army, and General DeWitt, Commanding General of the 4th Army and Western Defense Command, and I was just a little Major, then promoted.
I hereby delegate to you, Karl. R. Bendetsen, all and in full my powers and authority under Executive Order 9066 which, in turn, have been delegated by the President to the Secretary of War, the Chief of Staff, the Commanding General, and now to you. All rules and regulations of the 4th Army over which I have any control or authority, you have authority to suspend if, in your judgment, it is necessary. You will take this action and you will establish separate headquarters. You will have full authority to call on all civilian agencies that was designated by the President. You will do this with a minimum of disruption of logistics, military training, operations and preparedness, and with a minimum of military personnel.
I had three military persons in my office. All the rest of them were civilians.

It has been alleged falsely that there were guards of military men inside the assembly centers and the relocation centers. That is totally false. I will come to that later.
You will use all your powers and facilities to encourage these people to exclude themselves from the sea frontier. You will take measures to induce voluntary evacuation and provide assistance.
During my first 4 weeks, 4,000 families left voluntarily. They were not detained, and there was no detention ever authorized by Executive Order 9066. If any detention was authorized by the War Relocation Authority, I never heard of it before until today. I don't believe it. But if it was, it was never authorized by Executive Order 9066, which is what we are dealing with.
For those who do not relocate themselves, comfortable transportation will be provided to temporary shelters. Families will not be separated.
We never separated a single family.
Medical care, nutrition for the children and food for the adults will be provided. If it is necessary to provide such facilities, you will see that the Japanese themselves administer all functions within them.
And they did, not only in the assembly centers, but in the relocation centers. It turned out that I had to build as -- before the Army turned it over to the War Relocation Authority -- because many of them couldn't handle their own evacuation. That is all they were provided for. Before I left, these centers were furnished and filled. There were 10 of them. Thousands left during that time. I cannot understand testimony that says they couldn't leave after that.

I was ordered back from Europe when I was finished with this. I was assigned to the combined staff planning the Overlord Invasion in London, the British and American Army there and the Navy. There were some problems. There were a large number of persons of Japanese ancestry who were very hostile to the United States, and they were causing great difficulties within the relocation centers on their own fellow persons of Japanese ancestry. They brought me back. I had to sort them out, move them carefully, and they were put in Tule Lake, CA, which was a relocation center to accommodate persons hostile to the United States. People who were in the Tule Lake Center were moved to the others, no families were separated, and I never had a complaint from any one of them that they were not given immediate access to leave if they wanted to. Many of them had jobs on the outside, thousands of them.

Something else that has not been testified. Earlier in this game, the Congress and our recommendation authorized an appropriation of $4 million to provide these people who wanted to start their own business outside of the relocation centers. You want to consider that in looking at this.

Now, H.R. 4110 and the report of the Commission is false, and it is about time this Congress had an introspection into this without basing it on the Commission's report. There are many Japanese on the west coast who wanted to testify before the Commission that they were not interned, that there was no internment. The Commission didn't keep order in these hearings. Those who were the proponents of it booed and hissed. When I testified in the caucus room of the Russell Senate Office Building, many of the proponents were there and they booed and hissed me. It wasn't very well run, not as legislative hearings are supposed to be run.

But all that is said in the initial recital of H.R. 4110 I deal with in my testimony. You have 60 copies. If you want me to testify with it for you, I would be delighted to do so. I don't want to impose on your time.

But this is not as it has been presented by my friend, Mr. Ennis. DeWitt did have MAGIC. He did know about these very dangerous overlapping espionage nests. All other allegations are totally false, gentlemen.

Now he didn't have the MAGIC intelligence, he had the conclusions of the MAGIC intelligence given to him by the Chief of Staff of the Army. I was the only other officer that I know of who knew about it. I didn't testify to it in front of the Commission because I knew it would be fruitless. Every Commissioner had made up his mind before he was appointed -- I know most of them -- except the Congressman from California who goes along with the Commission's conclusions, but not, so far as I know yet, with a monetary compensation.

This is a very serious matter to say, as Mr. Frank said, that it was a mistake. How could that judgment be made today in any fairness or frankness when the United States was open to attack by a major military power and when it knew they had espionage nests on the coast? It would be something very worthwhile to look at carefully, whether today it would be fair to say that compensation should be paid.

Now it must be remembered also, gentlemen, that on August 16, 1940, the draft reinstatement, and the President of the United States was given authority to order all Reserve Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines to extended active duty and to federalize the National Guard of the several States. The National Guard of the several States in the West, Oregon,Washington, California, Arizona, Nevada, Utah, and Idaho were ordered to active duty and they were all sent to the Philippines.

When the Japanese attacked, they so brutally treated them and murdered most of them, this got back to the relatives of these people in those States. They knew this wasn't something that could be held secret. Many U.S. citizens conducted themselves in a way I would never approve of, but this was for a limited period of time. If my friend, Tom Clark, was still living, the former Chief Justice -- he was the Department of Justice west coast representative. He saw it, and he knew that it would be difficult to stop.

But when you are told that the household goods of the evacuees after I took over were dissipated, that is totally false. The truth is that all of the household goods of those who were evacuated or who left voluntarily were indexed, stored, and warehouse receipts were given. And those who settle in the interior on their own told us, and we shipped it to them free of charge.

As far as their crops are concerned, the allegations are totally false. I used the Agriculture Department to arrange harvesting after they left and to sell the crops at auction, and the Federal Reserve System, at my request, handled the proceeds. The proceeds were carefully deposited in their bank accounts in the West to each individual owner. And many of these farms were farmed for the whole time -- not sold at bargain prices, but leased -- and the proceeds were based upon the market value of the harvest. You should know that.

Mr. HALL. Colonel, let me interrupt here. I have received letters from people who counteract what you are saying now completely.

Mr. BENDETSEN. I know you have. There was testimony totally to that effect to this Commission.

Mr. HALL. We are going to have a witness here today who is going to testify about her father writing a letter. She has the letter that he wrote when they were separated.

Is it possible that maybe some of these people were separated, families were separated, that you had no knowledge of? Is it possible that some of the merchandise and goods and wares that these people has possibly was sold at a distress sale that you didn't know about? We have received much, much -- not testimony because it had been in the areas of letters that have been written to us -- to me, and I suppose everybody else has, too -- which just indicate with what you are saying now that there are possibly two sides to this thing.

Mr. BENDETSEN. There were many, prior to the time the Army took over I have testified to, who were taken advantage of.

Mr. HALL. Your testimony is dealing from the time that General DeWitt put you in charge, that nothing like that took place after that time?

Mr. BENDETSEN. I feel---

Mr. HALL. What was the date you were put in charge? I don't believe it says that on the information you gave us.

Mr. BENDETSEN. It was, I think, February 18.

Mr. HALL. 1942?

Mr. BENDETSEN. Yes, sir.

Mr. HALL. All right, go ahead.

Mr. BENDETSEN. I would not be in a position to deny that there were not very regrettable advantages taken of persons of Japanese ancestry between December 7 and March 1942. It is certainly regrettable if it happened. I couldn't take over in a moment. As a matter of fact, I was a Reserve officer, a captain in the field artillery, ordered to active duty on the day after March 16, 1940. I lived in Washington State and I know many people of Japanese ancestry. They were my friends. I went to school with them, I went to Stanford with them. I know people in Japan, and I have friendly relations with all of them, and not one of them has ever criticized what we did on the basis of military necessity.

But I went to Washington to lobby the Congress about the draft law. I didn't think we were prepared. I met a number of people. I didn't know anybody but our Congressman Russell Mack. Very few people knew him. But I met two War Department liaison officers. When President Roosevelt on that date signed the bill to be passed by the House in the morning, they invited me to lunch, and they both said to me, "Bendetsen, after all the hell you've raised along here, don't you think you ought to come on active duty?"

So I was ordered to active duty on the 17th. I didn't {word omitted} the War Department for some time, against my will, but I had many tasks. I didn't want this one.

Mr. HALL. Did you ever have knowledge of the MAGIC cables before December 7, 1941?

Mr. BENDETSEN. Before?

Mr. HALL. Yes, sir.

Mr. BENDETSEN. No, sir.

Mr. HALL. Did General DeWitt, so far as you know?

Mr. BENDETSEN. I don't really know, but I would doubt that he had any knowledge of them whatsoever. No one else did but the persons I have named.

Mr. HALL. When did you first learn of the MAGIC cables?

Mr. BENDETSEN. When did I first learn of them?

Mr. HALL. Yes, sir, if you know.

Mr. BENDETSEN. After the Battle of Europe, which I went through.

Mr. HALL. Does that conclude your testimony, sir? I didn't mean to interrupt you.

Mr. BENDETSEN. No; I might testify, if you would wish it, to the summary.

Mr. HALL. To the what, sir?

Mr. BENDETSEN. To my summary.

Mr. HALL. All right, go ahead. I am not trying to interrupt you, I just didn't know whether you were finished or not.

Mr. BENDETSEN. Executive Order 9066 authorized establishment of military areas from which "any and all persons may be excluded." That is the language. Western Arizona and the States of California, Oregon, Washington, and Alaska were established as military areas. All persons were excluded from entering Alaska without a permit. Persons of Japanese ancestry were excluded from the other four areas above named.

Executive Order 9066 did not authorize internment. The report of the Commission on Wartime Relocation and H.R. 4110 are both totally false in this respect. Excludees and evacuees were not interned. Persons of Japanese ancestry were free to go anywhere else in the United States except the areas designated above. Over 4,000 families, greatly assisted by my outfit, moved themselves to the interior by mid-April 1942. After that, many other thousands left the relocation centers in 1942 and 1943. I didn't leave until 1943.

The Commission's report and sections 2(a) (2) and (3) are in this respect totally false. There are false statements in the legislation based on the conclusions of the Commission. The Japanese diplomatic and military codes had been broken in secret during 1941. This intelligence named MAGIC conclusively established the clear military necessity for President Roosevelt's act. It revealed the existence on the Pacific coast of massive espionage nests utilizing Japanese residents, citizens and noncitizens.

The hearings of the Relocation Commission are a clear indication of its unreliability and total bias. The omission of MAGIC intelligence from its report, mentioned only in a late supplement by the chairman saying that MAGIC had no relevance -- you know that it had because you have had testimony very clearly about MAGIC. The omission of MAGIC intelligence is shocking evidence that the Commission, while aware of it, did not say it. The chairman said it was irrelevant, later after their report had been filed. Evacuees now residing on the Pacific coast have telephoned me that, during the west coast hearings of the Commission, they were intimidated from testifying that there was no internment. You can find them if you wish, and they are very reliable persons.

Internment was a very special Justice Department procedure. To supplement what my friend, Mr. Ennis, said, each individual German, Italian, or Japanese alien was brought up before a hearing individually with counsel of his own before he was interned. They they were interned in very special Justice Department facilities. Not one of them ever came into the temporary facilities. It became necessary to help the evacuees. As I said before, many thousands left assembly centers and the relocation centers before I was assigned to the staff planning the Overlord invasion.

I knew and still know many Japanese and have many friends in Japan. All of the many I know fully understand the necessity for the evacuation in World War II. They are fully familiar with MAGIC, which has been a public reference since the citation made earlier of the congressional investigation. It would be very useful for this committee to tell its staff to have reference to it. When a nation defends itself in war, I repeat, it is never possible to equate the various sacrifices its citizens and residents are compelled to suffer.

That is my summary, sir.

[The statement of Mr. Bendetsen follows:]

HEARINGS ON H.R. 4110 - SEPTEMBER 12, 1984

  1. Executive Order 9066 authorized establishment of military areas from which "any and all persons my be excluded." Western Arizona and the States of California, Oregon, Washington, and Alaska were established as military areas. All persons were excluded from entering Alaska without a permit. Persons of Japanese ancestry were excluded from the other four areas above named.

  2. Executive Order 9066 did not authorize internment. The Report of the Commission on Wartime Relocation and H.R. 4110 are both totally false in this respect. Excludees and evacuees were not interned. Persons of Japanese ancestry were free to go anywhere else in the United States except the areas designated in Paragraph 1 above. Over 4,000 families greatly assisted by the WCCA (The Wartime Civil Control Administration of the 4th Army) moved themselves to the interior by mid-April 1942. Many other thousands left the relocation centers during 1942-43.

  3. The Commission's Report and Sections 2(a) (2) and (3) are both totally false. The Japanese Diplomatic and Military Codes had been broken in secret during 1941. This intelligence named "MAGIC" conclusively established the clear military necessity for President Roosevelt's Act. It revealed the existence on the Pacific coast of massive espionage nests utilizing residents of Japanese ancestry.

  4. The hearings of the Relocation Commission are a clear indication of its unreliability and total bias. The omission of MAGIC intelligence is further shocking evidence of this. Evacuees now residing on the Pacific coast have telephoned me that, during the West Coast hearings of the Commission, they were intimidated from testifying that there was no internment.

  5. Internment was a very special Justice Department procedure. Aliens of enemy nationality separately went before a judge with personal counsel. If the judge held adversely, the individual was interned in special Justice Department facilities.

  6. I knew and still know many Japanese and have many friends in Japan. They all fully understand the necessity for the evacuation of World War II. When a nation defends itself in war, it is never possible to equate the various sacrifices its citizens and residents are compelled to suffer.

  7. The Supreme Court upheld E.O. 9066 in Korematsu vs. United States. It held, "Korematsu was not excluded * * * because of hostility to him or his race. He was * * * because we are at war with the Japanese Empire * * *. There was evidence of disloyalty on the part of some * * *."



{Original in all capital letters; placed into lowercase for ease of readability.}

The title of H.R. 4110 is "To Accept the Findings and to Implement the Recommendations of the Commission on Wartime Relocation and Internment of Civilians."

In Sec. 2(a) (2), (3) it is stated in support of the findings and purposes of H.R. 4110:
"(2) The evacuation, relocation and internment of individuals of Japanese ancestry was carried out without any documented acts of espionage or sabotage or other acts of disloyalty by any citizens or permanent resident aliens of Japanese ancestry on the West Coast;

"(3) There were no military or security reasons for the evacuation, relocation and internment."
The use of the word "internment" in the title of the Commission's Report and in the Bill are each totally false usages. Executive Order 9066 did not direct or authorize internment of those excluded from a military area, viz. the Pacific Coast states and Western Arizona. All were free to go anywhere else they wished. Many thousands did. Internment in World War II (as in the case of World War I) refers exclusively to individual cases of enemy aliens, German, Italian and Japanese, who after a hearing in each individual case with that individual, represented by counsel of his own choosing, was found by the hearing judge individually to be a dangerous alien enemy. There were completely separate internment facilities for these people operated by the Department of Justice.

Persons of Japanese ancestry resident in military areas, viz. the Pacific Coast and Western Arizona, were excluded from such residence by Executive Order 9066. None of the persons of such ancestry residing elsewhere in the United States were affected.

When the Pacific Coast states and Western Arizona were declared to be military areas from which persons of Japanese ancestry were excluded under E.O. 9066, there was no intention in the first instance of providing any housing facilities for the excludees until it became absolutely clear that substantial numbers of such residents were unable to relocated themselves.

The Commission states that there was absolutely no military necessity underlying the decision of President Franklin Roosevelt to issue Executive Order 9066. The Commission slanders and libels the character of President Roosevelt by stating that his decision to issue Executive Order 9066 was based on racial prejudice. Mrs. Bernstein, the Chairman of the Commission, who testified before this Subcommittee, stated that the Commission did examine World War II intelligence, including MAGIC, and found no trace whatever of a military or security threat from resident Japanese Americans.

This Subcommittee is knowledgeable of the revelations of MAGIC intelligence. MAGIC totally refutes the irresponsible statements and findings of the Commission. MAGIC intelligence conclusively establishes that there was a major military necessity for the President's decision to issue E.O. 9066 as Commander in Chief.

The Commission members, prior to accepting their appointments, had each already decided what the Commission should conclude. The Commission was and is utterly biased. Most of their hearings were a disgrace to the good traditions of legislative investigative procedures. Why so?

Those who lobbied for the creation of the Commission through an Act of Congress attended every Commission hearing. Whenever any attempt was made by a witness to give testimony that would justify the President's action, or testimony that excludees were NOT interned, it was uniformly greeted with boos and hisses. There were evacuees who approached a Commission hearing prepared to testify adversely to the falsehoods employed in lobbying for the Act to create the Commission and for H.R. 4110. They were intimidated. There are still on the Pacific Coast evacuees who would so testify before this Commission if they were protected.

Many of our Japanese residents, both citizens and aliens, were and are loyal. But MAGIC clearly and conclusively establishes that there were many who were actively disloyal and that the loyalty of others would necessarily be uncertain if a Japanese attack on the Pacific Coast would have been made. Despite the Commission's Report, this Subcommittee should know, as a fact, that countless Japanese moved out of Assembly
Centers to the interior with the assistance of the Wartime Civil Control Administration and many, many others moved at will from the relocation centers. They were encouraged to do so. They were NOT interned. Executive Order 9066 did not authorize internment of excludees. None were interned.

I made seven visits calling on the Governors and the Mayors of the principal cities and towns in the interior states of Idaho, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, Colorado and Wyoming to urge them to encourage Japanese who had been excluded from the West Coast to leave the centers and to help them find employment and residences.

Many elected to stay in the relocation centers. They had jobs on the outside at full wages. They had free room and board. No families were ever separated. Education and medical care was provided. The Japanese themselves administered the relocation centers (as well as the temporary Assembly Centers).

President Roosevelt, Secretary of War Stimson, Secretary of the Navy Frank Knox were each and all statesmen of great stature, among the finest men who have ever served our nation.

The time is long overdue for the Government of the United States, including its Congress, the House and the Senate, to make its own unprejudiced investigation and defend the government against the grotesque charges stated in Sec. 2(a) (1), (2), (3) and (4) of H.R. 4110 that it was race prejudice and not realistic security precautions which induced President Roosevelt's Order. The decision was not made by military men; it was made by the only man in the United States who could make it, that is to say, Franklin D. Roosevelt, President of the United States and the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces.

When President Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066, the accumulative effect of MAGIC intelligence from broken Japanese codes presented a frightening specter of massive espionage nests on the West Coast of the United States, established and controlled by the Japanese government and utilizing large numbers of resident Japanese. To conclude, as has the Commission on Wartime Relocation and as stated in H.R. 4110 that President Roosevelt was motivated solely by political and racial considerations is irresponsible and libelous.

The most comprehensive study ever made of events leading to Pearl Harbor "Hearings before the Joint Congressional Committee on the Investigation of the Pearl Harbor Attack," 39 volumes published in 1946, examined every aspect of MAGIC in excruciating detail. The Congressional Committee concluded that MAGIC contributed enormously to the defeat of the enemy, greatly shortened the war and saved many thousands of lives. Few Army and Navy officers had any knowledge of MAGIC intelligence. To prevent any leakage to the Japanese that their codes had been broken, MAGIC was restricted to the Secretary of War, the Army Chief of Staff, the Chief of Army War Plans, the Director of Military Intelligence, the Secretary of the Navy, the Chief of Naval Operations, the Chief of the Navy's War Plans Division and the Director of Navy Intelligence, the Secretary of State and the President of the United States.

I turn now to another relevant aspect.

The Wartime Civil Control Administration was established by General DeWitt. As one of his General Staff Officers, he directed that I exercise his authority over WCCA. The WCCA had several functions. Among these were the administration of wartime blackout regulations and the establishment and operation of Alaska Travel Control. Following Pearl Harbor, under the authority of E.O. 9066, no individual could enter Alaska without a permit. There was major military construction urgently needed in Alaska. This required a large work force. Alaska Travel Control established several offices in the U.S. and three in Canada. Entry to Alaska was solely through the Port of Seattle, Washington. Intending employees for the work force had to be screened in order to be issued permits to pass through Seattle. As a matter of fact, the Committee will be interested to know that my assigned mission turned out to require three crews: one on the job, one leaving and one entering.

Entirely opposite from the false statements of the Commission's Report, the Wartime Civil Control Administration carefully and separately stored the household goods of all evacuees. In each case, a detailed inventory was taken and each family was issued warehouse receipts. For those who evacuated themselves and took up residence elsewhere, the WCCA arranged the shipment of their possessions in each case at no cost to the family. As soon as the relocation centers had been built and furnished and the remaining evacuees were moved into them, the War Relocation Administration {Authority} (WRA) took over and it continued these arrangements.

The statements in the Commission's Report are totally false that action under E.O 9066 caused the pillage and destruction of the household goods and furnishings of the evacuees. When the relocation centers were emptied, each evacuee obtained his household goods at no cost.

E.O 9066 delegated authority through the Secretary of War to General DeWitt and, in turn, he delegated it to me to call on any and every agency of the Federal Government to assist in making the evacuation as painless as possible. I did so and received full cooperation and indispensable services which greatly benefited evacuees. Many evacuees owned very excellent truck gardens and truck farms. I arranged with the Agriculture Department to bring about the harvesting of all crops. Sales were made by the Department at auction. The cash payments were handled at my request by the Federal Reserve District and their funds were deposited int he bank accounts of each evacuee -- no exceptions.

There is much more to say. I am ready and willing to respond to questions and to whatever the Committee later decides to request.

I know evacuees of senior age who intensely wished to testify before the Commission during its West Coast hearings. They wished to say that they were free to be anywhere in the United States except the West Coast. Others who were first in an assembly center and then in a relocation center wished to tell that they were free to leave; that there was NO internment. The Commission did not maintain orderly hearings. Those who wished to testify adversely to the falsehoods of the proponents were not protected by the Commission. They were physically intimidated by the proponents of the Commission, some of whom were not even born until after World War II. These proponents always booed and hissed if a witness was deemed adverse to their false positions. They booed and hissed me.

Japanese are not mentioned in E.O 9066. It applied to any and all residents, not just to those of Japanese ancestry. All U.S. citizens and others were excluded from entering Alaska without a permit.

The Supreme Court of the United States in an opinion upholding E.O 9066 held: "Korematsu was not excluded from the military area because of hostility to him or his race. He was * * * because we are at war with the Japanese Empire * * *. The military authorities feared an invasion of our west coast."

On December 7, 1941, we lost our Pacific fleet. The U.S. could not bring to bear defenses against a Japanese attack on the Pacific Coast. One was under way in May of 1942. It was deterred by a slim margin in the Battle of Midway. Japanese forces did seize and occupy the Aleutian Islands of Attu and Kiska, until they were dislodged from Kiska by our military forces. This brought about their evacuation of Attu.

On all citizens and noncitizens, war imposes hardships which cannot be compensated by the Government. Servicemen are separated from their families, families are broken. The consequences of wartime are cruel when a nation must defend itself.

Mr. HALL. Thank you very much, Mr. Bendetsen. We appreciate that.

I will yield to the gentleman from Ohio, Mr. Kindness.

Mr. KINDNESS. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Mr. Bendetsen, we appreciate your testimony very much.

The years that intervene as to when the events about which your testimony has been presented and today make it a little difficult for the members of the subcommittee to put things in context, so it is very helpful to have those who participated in the events present their recollections to us directly.

I am particularly interested in that part of your testimony today describing the environment in which the Commission hearings were held. There have been other indications that this subcommittee has received that those who were in opposition to the Commission's seemingly predetermined findings were greeted with boos and hisses, and that the Commission's hearings were not conducted in a manner that really maintained order or gave any credibility to the hearings. Once it is know{n} that the atmosphere of that sort exists, anyone familiar with such hearings would decrease his regard for the reliability of the hearing record and the content of the testimony.

Can you tell the subcommittee your own experience in testifying before the Commission and the surrounding environment a little bit more for the record? You mentioned the booing and hissing, but as to the Commission members themselves, did the nature of the questioning help to understand their positions, or, as is true with our subcommittee, was it pretty clear what our biases were?

Mr. BENDETSEN. Well, my experience was I testified for 8 hours without recess, and I found that all of them were in a position of having decided everything. As a matter of fact, I would testify to you under oath -- I think I am and, if I am not, I wish to be. I think I did. Each member of the Commission, all but three of them I knew, had made up their minds before they were appointed, except for the Congressman from California who was a member.

As I think I said, Justice Goldberg said: "Don't you think this was a mistake?" I said:
Justice Goldberg, if you are asking me to make a decision today about doing something like that, I would never approach it. But certainly no one can say now that the President of the United States and the elevated statesmen such as Stimson serving under him would give him advice that would be a mistake such as you are characterizing it.
Mr. KINDNESS. In time of war, I believe the principle might very well be that, if you are to make an error, it should be on the side of safety. That is, if a mistake is going to be made, wouldn't it rather consistently be the judgment of those with responsibility for such decisions that they would make the most cautious, the most safe position, if there was a choice to be made between positions?

Mr. BENDETSEN. I would say, sir, that in the face of MAGIC intelligence which the top people had -- if you haven't had a chance to read it, I urge you each to do so -- I would find it hard to see how anyone could reach any other conclusion. Our fleet had been destroyed. We had a very untrained Army. We had no naval forces to amount to anything in the Battle of Midway. Whatever else we had, the carrier -- we had one left, and those aircraft were gone. We were defenseless on the west coast. The MAGIC intelligence was very, very powerful for those who made the decisions. Those who say that the President of the United States was obligated to approve this decision, I would differ with substantially. He made the decision based on MAGIC intelligence.

I urge the committee, if it hasn't done so, to get the benefit of the hearings I cited in my testimony, when an exhaustive inquiry was made into Pearl Harbor by a joint committee of the Congress in 1946. There are 39 volumes.

Of course, these people, many of whom I have known -- I have had very good relationships with the Japanese for many, many years. I know some of the younger ones who developed the Commission. Some weren't born then, a few, and others were very, very young, 3, 4, 5, or 11. There were some, of course, who were older. I certainly understand why they don't like what I say. They really weren't around when all this happened in a way to form an intelligent decision the way many other Japanese residents in the United States did. You can find them. If you would like to have help, I would be willing to volunteer. I think it is a proposal which is based upon representations in the statute that have no foundation.

Mr. KINDNESS. I thank you, sir, for your testimony.

I yield back, Mr. Chairman.

Mr. HALL. Thank you.

Mr. McCollum.

Mr. McCOLLUM. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

I would like to explore for a few moments with you the distinction that you have drawn between the relocation centers, the relocation camps, and internment. I wish to do that simply for my own education about this period.

I gather from your testimony that there were some Japanese Americans who were interned that, in fact, were given hearings and they were taken to a separate camp, or prison, or whatever.

Mr. BENDETSEN. No, not Japanese Americans. They were Japanese aliens only.

Mr. McCOLLUM. Japanese aliens?

Mr. BENDETSEN. Yes; the German, Italian, and Japanese aliens had individual hearings, based upon what we did in World War II. There were German, Italians, and others. It was the same procedure, Justice Department procedure, with personal counsel assigned to each individual before some sort of judge.

Mr. McCOLLUM. Did they go to prison camps if they were aliens then, as opposed to the relocation centers?

Mr. BENDETSEN. The Justice Department had internment facilities, very separate, having nothing to do with the shelter of assembly centers and relocation centers. They were simply built to accommodate them in a transition from residence within the military zones of the west coast and elsewhere.


Let me ask this question of you. Some of the witnesses have and will be testifying -- and have before the Commission -- that the relocation centers were enclosed with barbed wire, had watchtowers, and armed guards, and so on. Is that an accurate description of the relocation centers?

Mr. BENDETSEN. That is 100 percent totally false. There is no basis for the testimony under oath before the Commission, and I know this.

In General DeWitt's orders to me --

Mr. HALL. The committee will come to order.

Mr. BENDETSEN. Now because of the actions of outraged U.S. citizens, of which I do not approve, it was necessary in some of the assembly centers, particularly Santa Anita which was converted into an assembly center in southern California. It had the facilities for sanitation, showers, and so on, and it was used temporarily.

It was necessary to protect the evacuees in the assembly centers from disgruntled American citizens, and that is the only place where guards were used. Relocation centers, barbed wire, and guards, there was not a guard at all at any of them. That would not be true of Tule Lake when it became a center similar to the internment centers of the Justice Department. They were guarded.

Mr. McCOLLUM. Is that because there were aliens in that camp, or was it still a relocation center converted for some other purpose?

Mr. BENDETSEN. These individuals had declared themselves to be Japanese citizens. You know, when they are born here, they have dual citizenship if they wish. Being a citizen of the United States doesn't cut them off from being a Japanese citizen.

Mr. McCOLLUM. Yes, sir.

Mr. BENDETSEN. Many of them were. Many of them were educated there, born in America, and so on.

In the relocation centers, many of them didn't want to leave so they got jobs close by, left the center every day and worked for employers paying current wages. They had free board, and room, and medical care. They had education. There were teachers for their children at all levels. And some of their children went to universities and graduated while their parents -- that was their home. After the university, they would come back there.

Mr. McCOLLUM. But those who exercised the choice of Japanese citizenship over American, who had the dual citizenship, were put into a camp that was different ultimately; is that what you are telling us?

Mr. BENDETSEN. Those who declared themselves, yes.

Mr. McCOLLUM. How many would of that---

Mr. BENDETSEN. I didn't put them there. The War Relocation Authority---

Mr. McCOLLUM. I understand that, but could you give us an estimate of how many we are talking about?

Mr. BENDETSEN. I think about 5,000. I could get an accurate number for you. I think it is approximately that.

Mr. McCOLLUM. By the end of the war, what percentage of those in the relocation camps had in fact evacuated -- or relocated I should say -- into the eastern or other places outside of the camps? What percentage had gone and what percentage were left in the camps?

Mr. BENDETSEN. I am not a firsthand knowledgeable witness.

Mr. McCOLLUM. You weren't there then?

Mr. BENDETSEN. By that time, I had gone over the Omaha Beach on H hour of D-day, so I don't really know.

Mr. McCOLLUM. I shouldn't have asked you the question. I will withdraw the question and seek that information somewhere else.

I have one other question about the conditions in the camps. There were complaints that have been issued to us that the barracks they lived in were constructed very hastily and sloppily, that there were large cracks in them, that they were extremely cold in the winter and extremely hot in summer, and that living conditions generally were harsh. is that the description that would be accurate of one or more of those camps, or all of them, or is that just a relative thing? Could you tell us more about that aspect?

Mr. BENDETSEN. It is not a fair description of any of them. They were not that way.

Of course, at an elevation in the winter you have cold weather, but they had heat provided. They had family quarters. They were not luxurious, but they certainly accommodated them.

Mr. McCOLLUM. Some of them said they were crowded into horse stalls and things of that nature.

Mr. BENDETSEN. The assembly center at Santa Anita was a racetrack. You know about Santa Anita, CA. It was the largest assembly center temporarily used. Nobody was put in an unclean horse stall, but maybe some of them have told you so. I can testify because I knew that they weren't. They had sanitation and medical care. They administered the place. There were no guards on the inside. There were only a very few on the outside to protect them because they needed it from U.S. citizens who were misbehaving.

Mr. McCOLLUM. Thank you very much for your testimony. I appreciate your answering my questions.

I yield back, Mr. Chairman.

Mr. HALL. Thank you very much, Mr. Bendetsen. We thank you for your testimony. We appreciate your being here.

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