The American River Current

Comments (5)

All The American River Current Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • W

    Werner R. Ulrich, Former Internee, WWIINov 30, 2016 at 6:42 am

    A Touch of WWII History
    Between December 7, 1941 and V-J Day, September 2, 1945, only one exchange took place between United States and Japan. This exchange was not between POWs nor civilian prisoners but the recall of all diplomats with the use of the Swedish ship M.S. Gripsholm and the Japanese ship, Asamu Maru. The Gripsholm was chartered by the U.S. government as an International Red Cross exchange ship. Japan assigned the Asamu Maru as its exchange ship.
    The Gripsholm set sail from New York on June 18, 1942 with 908 adult Japanese and Thailanders, including 180 American born children. The ship docked in Rio de Janeiro to pickup over 400 Japanese adults of Peru and Japanese-Peruvian children.
    On June 25, 1942, the Asamu Maru set sail from the Port of Yokohama with 2,768 American diplomats and civilians on board.
    Both ships docked in Port Marques, Portuguese East Africa, and on July 23, 1942, a successful exchange took place. This was the only exchange ever made between Japan and the Allied Powers.
    (Source: Endo Russell, Professor of Sociology and Asian American Studies (retired).)
    However, one may pose the questions: Why only a single exchange of Japanese diplomats for American diplomats? Why not exchange Japanese/Japanese-American internees for American citizens and POWs in Japan as so done with German and Italian families with Europe? After all, many interned Japanese men (patriarchy) signed “Repatriation to Japan” agreements with federal authorities.
    The answer is that the United States Government knew of the Japanese code of “No Surrender” and perceived, if turned over to Japan, life-threatening dangers towards interned Japanese immigrants and their American born children. The government knew of the Bataan Death March which began April 9, 1942.

  • A

    AndreNov 28, 2016 at 7:42 pm

    Yes, many innocent people were sent to camps in WWII. Approximately 11,000 Germans, 3,000 Italians, and 120,000 Japanese. In 1940 the U.S. population was 132,164,569, and more than 1.2 million were born in Germany, 5 million had two native-German parents, and 6 million had one native-German parent. So, more than 12 million German-Americans and German immigrants were not in camps, including general Dwight D. Eisenhower.
    I almost forgot; more than half a million Mexicans-Americans were deported in the 1930’s because this country needed to find a scapegoat during the depression.

  • S

    Shirley AndersonNov 25, 2016 at 6:20 am

    As always the interment issue solely focuses on the Japanese. Are you aware that it sure wasn’t easy being German or Italian living in the US at that time because via executive order approximately 300,000 were declared Illegal Aliens though they had done nothing wrong. Many of them were interned, even in same camps as Japanese for example Crystal City, TX. They were then traded with our enemy into a war zone. Many of them were American, born here. None of this was about race, it was about our being at war with rhose three countries. Big quest remains, why do we refuse to recognize what was done to the Germans and Italians.

  • W

    Werner R. Ulrich, Former Internee, WWIINov 24, 2016 at 6:16 am

    I was devastated when I read Reiko Nagumo statement: “There was nothing like this for German or Italian Americans.” I was born September 1941 in New York Hospital, New York, NY. Before I was potty trained, I found myself interned in an enemy alien internment camp, Crystal City, Texas. My parents and I were part of an FBI roundup of Germans in NYC to be used for exchanges of American families and diplomats incarcerated in Germany. While my parents were labeled “enemy aliens,” I, along with all other interned American children, was classified “Enemy of the State.” My sister was born in the camp as an “Enemy of the State.” The aftermaths of internment was devastating.
    My workings in reference to WWII internment of German, Italian, Japanese, including German and Japanese of South Americans, can be found at Facebook’s “U.S. Family Internment Camp, Crystal City, Texas” and

  • A

    A.D. JacobsNov 23, 2016 at 11:59 pm

    As usual the story is incomplete and includes falsehoods, this statement “There was nothing like this for German or Italian Americans,” is just one of them. You see German Americans and Italian Americans were also interned!

Activate Search
The internment of Japanese Americans retold by survivors