The first is the experience of the young people who received seasonal work releases to harvest potatoes and sugar beets in agricultural areas of the West. The autobiography concludes with Monica securing a position in a church-sponsored home and leaving camp to attend college, as did 4, students. On the other hand, Long Road from White River describes the difficulties of resettlement for a family whose collective identity had been severely altered during the war.
Americans were convinced there were spies within the Japanese American communities. FBI agents moved through Japanese communities within hours of the Pearl Harbor attack and arrested prominent leaders. The cause for arrest was nothing more than the possibility that these citizens of Japanese descent maintained sympathy with Japan.
Japanese banks were closed, accounts frozen could not withdraw the moneyand homes searched for any item, such as short-wave radios, that could be used to send signals to Japanese ships should they come to the U.
The situation in was much like the situation following the September 11,terrorist attacks, when the U. As a result of the interview, my family name was reduced to No.
I was given several tags bearing the family number…. Roosevelt —; served —45under heavy pressure from politicians, the military, and public, issued Executive Order on February 19, The order required removal of all persons of Japanese ancestry from California, Washington, Oregon, and Arizona to staging or gathering areas for transportation to assembly centers.
The government quickly established assembly centers at fairgrounds, racetracks, and stockyards. Japanese Citizen 13660 or alien 13660 were given only a few weeks to take care of business including selling houses, stores, and cars, and packing only what they could carry.
Pets and other valuables too big to carry had to be left behind if provisions for them had not been made.
They were taken to Tanforan race track in California, where they lived in a stable until moved to an internment camp in central Utah called Topaz. The following excerpt from Citizen describes the shock of evacuation to an assembly center and what they found when they arrived.
Things to remember while reading excerpts from Citizen About 70 percent of Japanese Americans were U. In all, there were ten hastily constructed internment camps in remote areas: Prejudice against Asian Americansoverwhelmingly of Japanese and Chinese ancestry, was long-standing since the mid-nineteenth century when they began arriving in the United States.
Laws, solely based on ethnicity, restricted Japanese and Chinese immigration, landownership, and U. Excerpt from Citizen I had a good home and many friends. Everything was going along fine.
Then on December 7,while my brother and I were having late breakfast I turned on the radio and heard the flash—"Pearl Harbor bombed by the Japanese! We wondered what this would mean to us and the other people of Japanese descent in the United States.
Our fears came true with the declaration of war against Japan. Radios started blasting, newspapers flaunted scare headlines. On the West Coast there was talk of possible sabotage and invasion by the enemy. It was "Jap" this and "Jap" that.
Restricted areas were prescribed and many arrests and detentions of enemy aliens took place. All enemy aliens were required to have certificates of identification. Contraband, such as cameras, binoculars, short-wave radios, and firearms had to be turned over to the local police.
I was too busy to bother about the reports of possible evacuation.
However, it was not long before I realized my predicament. My fellow workers were feeling sorry for me; my Caucasian friends were suggesting that I go east; my Japanese American friends were asking me what I would do if all American citizens and aliens of Japanese ancestry were evacuated.
Letters from a sister in Southern California informed me that Father had been whisked away to an internment camp….
The people looked at all of us, both citizens and aliens, with suspicion and mistrust. On February 19,by executive order of the President, the enemy alien problem was transferred from the Department of Justice to the War Department. Restriction of German and Italian enemy aliens and evacuation of all American citizens and aliens of Japanese ancestry was ordered.
Three military areas were designated, including practically all of the coastal states of Washington, Oregon, and California, and the inland states of Arizona, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, and Utah.Mine Okubo was one of , people of Japanese descent--nearly two-thirds of them American citizens -- who were rounded up into "protective custody" shortly after Pearl Harbor.
Citizen , her memoir of life in relocation centers in California and Utah, was first published in , then reissued by University of Washington Press in with a /5(3).
Citizen , or Alien ? "Remember, it's the winners write the history books, and the losers get the leavings. Anyone Harris)" While the oppressed often lament their affliction in an exaggerated manner, Mine Kobo objectively conveys a sense of hope and optimism by illustrating the period of Japanese internment with vivid pictures and concise captions.
Citizen , Okubo's graphic memoir of life in relocation centers in California and Utah, illuminates this experience with poignant illustrations and witty, candid text.
Now available with a new introduction by Christine Hong and in a wide-format artist edition, this graphic novel can reach a new generation of readers and scholars.2/5(16).
Citizen is the first personal account of what life was like for people in a Japanese internment camp. It was originally published in , but went out of print in the s when people wanted to forget the war. Executive Order of March 6, Blocking Property of Certain Persons Contributing to the Sit- the term ‘‘United States person’’ means any United States citizen, permanent resident alien, entity organized under the laws of the United States or any jurisdiction .
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