Tag Archives: Japanese American internment

WWII Japanese American internment at Tucson Festival of Books

It’s that time again to spend two whole days March 11 and 12, 2017 at the Tucson Festival of Books, listening to authors, buying books, visiting literary booths, enjoying music and science exhibits, etc.  It’s like a mini  tent city that pops up on the campus every March, just before Spring  Break.  The festival is between Old Main and Campbell Avenue, all along the UA Mall, from 9:30 to 5:30 p.m on both days. Free to the public.

All info again at:  www.tucsonfestivalofbooks.org for participating authors, schedule, how to donate and help, how to get there by walking, bike, bus, car.

Of note in 2017:  attending the festival will be author Pamela Rotner Sakamoto who wrote ““Midnight in Broad Daylight: A Japanese American Family Caught Between Two Worlds”.

“Midnight in Broad Daylight is the true story of a family divided by war. After their father’s death in Seattle, the Fukuhara children — all born and raised in the Pacific Northwest — moved to Hiroshima with their mother. Eager to go back to America, two of the children — Mary and Harry — returned in the late 1930s. Then came Pearl Harbor. Despite being sent to an internment camp with Mary, Harry volunteered to serve his country. Back in Hiroshima, their brothers Frank and Pierce became soldiers in the Japanese Imperial Army.”

Sakamoto will be appearing at 3 panels:

March 11, 10 a.m. at UA Memorial Student Union Gallagher Theater, 1303 E. University Blvd. on the WWII: Japanese American internment

March 12, 10 a.m. at Koffler Bldg room 204, 1430 E. University Blvd.  on Race in America

March 12, 2:30 p.m. at UA Library Special Collections, 1510  E. University Blvd.  on WWII: Asking Why, Internment and Holocaust

Also discussing the WWII Japanese American Internment Camps  will be Richard Cahan, author of “Un-American: The Incarceration of Japanese Americans During World War II”

and  Richard Reeves, author of “Infamy: The Shocking Story of the Japanese Internment in World War II”.

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KXCI community radio’s International Women’s Day special programming

KXCI International Women’s Day Special Programming made possible in part by generous support from Marshall Foundation2017 KXCI International Women's DaySunday, March 5th 3:00 pm-6:00 pmWednesday, March 8th 5:00 am-8:00 pmListen live: 91.3 KXCI Tucson or https://kxci.org/Contact: Amanda Shauger amanda@kxci.org520-623-1000 ext. 17 or 520-990-3623
KXCI Commemorates International Women’s Day with a great lineup of our women public affairs programmers, DJs, special community guests, and plenty of fantastic music by women artists of all genres. In fact, we have more programming than will fit into one day, so we invite you to tune into KXCI at 91.3 FM on Sunday, March 5th from 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm and on Wednesday, March 8th from 7:00 am to 8:00 pm.Support for KXCI and this special Women’s Day programming is provided by Marshall Foundation. Marshall Foundation enhances the lives of Tucson and Pima County women and families through support of charitable organizations involved in education, social services, and early childhood development.We’re really excited about our great community guests. Below are some highlights.
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Former U.S. Senate Aide Carolyn Sugiyama Classen: Creation of National Commission which investigated the wrong done to WWII Japanese Americans

This is a recap of most of my remarks at a recent Feb. 18, 2017 Day of Remembrance event at the Tucson Desert Art Museum, where there are currently 3 ongoing art & history exhibits on the WWII internment camps. About 120,000 Japanese Americans civilians (2/3 were U.S. Citizens, ½ were children) were rounded up by the US Government and incarcerated into 10 large relocation centers in desolate parts of America (including two camps in Arizona).  It is fitting to publish these remarks today, February 19, 2017, on the 75th anniversary of the signing by President Franklin D. Roosevelt of Executive Order 9066 which caused this unjust relocation & internment.

Carolyn Sugiyama Classen speaking at Day of Remembrance, courtesy of atty. Robin Blackwood. Panelists Professors Min Yanagihashi & Kathryn Nakagawa in background.

“I am Sansei (3rd generation) from Hawaii, as my grandparents Hyakuji and Tai Sugiyama left Hiroshima and arrived in June, 1892 to the Kingdom of Hawaii before it fell in 1893.  They became impoverished, indentured servants on sugar plantations in Hawaii. My grandparents had 8 children and my father Sueo was the last and youngest.

My father was the 1st in his family to go to college (University of Hawaii at Manoa) and was unfortunately in Los Angeles at USC Dental School when Pearl Harbor was bombed on December 7, 1941. He was summarily expelled from USC due to his race, along with other Japanese American students. My father nicknamed Francis (a U.S. Citizen) did not return home to Hawaii, but stayed in Los Angeles, later obtained a “voluntary” pass from Western Defense Command General John DeWitt and fled to Chicago. He left his belongings with a Jewish woman in L.A. and she subsequently shipped them to him. He stayed in Chicago, took classes at Loyola University, then got re-admitted to Dental School at the U. of Maryland, finishing in 1946.  (I found out later that about 5,000 others also got passes and voluntarily left the West Coast for inland states.)

Fast forward to me as a young attorney practicing law on the island of Kauai, when I decided to go to Washington D.C. to work for U.S. Senator Daniel K. Inouye. How did I know the Senator? He had always been in our family discussions (“Cousin Dan”), as he was married to first cousin Maggie, the 2nd of 6 daughters of Aunty Omitsu Sugiyama Awamura of Honolulu.  Aunty was my father’s 2nd oldest sister of the 8 children of my immigrant grandparents. My father had been the last born of the 8 children, and was more then 20 years younger than the oldest siblings.

Dan Inouye and cousin Maggie were married before I was even born.  Inouye was a decorated combat veteran of the 442nd Regimental Combat Battalion, lost his right arm in the war, had been elected as Hawaii’s first Congressman in 1959 (when Hawaii became a state).  He became a U.S. Senator in 1963, and attended by older brother’s high school graduation when I was 16 (when I first met him).

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