X-Message-Number: 16848
Date: Tue, 03 Jul 2001 06:45:05 -0700
From: Lee Corbin <>
Subject: Re: Japanese Internment

Mike Perry wrote

>>Even if the Japanese-American population had become
>>inhumanly loyal to the United States, the danger to
>>them from the Anglos would have warranted separation.
>Wow! I've never heard that justification before! I don't
>buy it. I don't think there was any substantial anti-
>Japanese action on the part of Anglos (or other groups)
>to serve as an indicator that this sort of thing would 
>follow.  Not at all.

I don't know either.  I once heard that this was part of
the justification put forth by the authorities.  But I'd
have had to be there to have a strong opinion about just
how badly Japanese would have been treated in California.
One friend who WAS there says that you wouldn't believe
the amount of Japanese vilification and racism; but 
whether it would translate into mobs attacking Japs
I don't know.

>>There simply wouldn't have been time for it.  Besides, how could
>>you prove *which* one-fifth of the population would one day aid
>>the invading army?
>I haven't seen any proof that *any* one fifth of
>the population would aid the invading army.

Of course, there can't be proof.  Our usual civilian "innocent
until proven guilty" is, of course, a luxury often foregone in
drastic times.  Sometimes, you go with your hunches in cases
like those.  As an example, I don't agree with Abraham Lincoln's
suspension of habeas corpus, and some of the other extreme things
he did.  But not on general grounds, only specific grounds.  He
thought that he had to do some pretty stern stuff.

>the example of Hawaii shows that the Japanese-Americans
>posed no serious threat

Like I said before, Hawaii never got invaded, so we don't know.

>and were not threatened in turn by Anglos, thus the internment
>was unnecessary and unwarranted,

Oh, in retrospect, since in fact California never was invaded,
the internment did turn out to be unnecessary and unwarranted
(unless the danger from the Anglos was real).  But I claim that
it was reasonable at the time.  Also, Hawaii may have been
different because of the ratio of the military to civilian
populations.  The place was swarming with soldiers.

>in California there were certain unscrupulous, racist
>elements who stood to gain if the property was seized,

Of course

>and who managed to play on fear and hysteria enough to
>bring about the infamous action in *their* home territory.

?? Would you mind explaining the mechanism in more detail?
I don't understand how these people "got" to Roosevelt and
the military high command.  Bribes?  Political pull?

You also have not answered the explanations that I have
submitted for why indeed one would expect a racial subgroup
to welcome an invading army of their "kinsmen".  (1) What do
you think would have happened in France, if there had been a 
German sub-population?  (2) What was wrong with my picture
of the highly disaffected "loser" young man, namely, those
with low self-esteem who I would expect to naturally revel
in the accomplishments of the invincible Japanese Army?
(see my earlier description for more detail).  (3) the way
that it would be only prudent for a number of
Japanese-Americans to welcome the invader, and do all
that they could to help?


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