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NEWS
October 15, 1990 | By CLAUDE LEWIS
It was 11 a.m. and the U.S. attorney general was on his knees. Dick Thornburgh, former governor of Pennsylvania, was trying to make up to Japanese-Americans, some now in wheelchairs, for the brutal treatment they received during World War II. Thousands of citizens of Japanese ancestry were rounded up and placed in "relocation" camps after the bombing of Pearl Harbor by Japan. Japan was not the only nation at war with the United States at the time. Germany and Italy were involved.
NEWS
September 3, 1989 | By CALVIN TRILLIN
I suppose everyone had a nice warm feeling back when President Ronald Reagan officially apologized to the Japanese-Americans who had been held in detention camps during the World War II and signed a bill awarding them each $20,000 in compensation. According to an article I read recently, though, a year has now passed and the government still hasn't paid anybody anything. I found that surprising. I had assumed that, once the President signs a bill authorizing payment, all you have to do is wait for the paperwork to get done, and then checks start appearing in the mail - more or less the way your tax refund check appears, which is to say only a week or two after you needed it in the worst way. Not so. First the money has to be appropriated.
NEWS
December 16, 1989 | By Lacy McCrary, Inquirer Staff Writer
It happened almost 50 years ago, but Othilia "Tilly" Busse has not recovered from the knock on her door in the middle of the night. Or from what happened after the brusque men rousted her and her family out of their beds and ransacked their apartment. It was in Brooklyn, N.Y., in December 1941, shortly after the United States went to war against Germany. Busse's father, Jacob Reseneder, was a German national who had come to America in 1926. Busse, who was 10 at the time, said she did not know why the FBI agents came after her father.
NEWS
May 15, 1990 | By Murray Dubin, Inquirer Staff Writer
Mary Watanabe was 22 and a senior at San Jose State, a fine student eager to begin graduate school. But she was not accepted at a university because her timing was bad. Mary Watanabe was of the wrong ancestry living in the wrong place at the wrong moment in American history: She was Japanese on the West Coast in 1942. The United States was at war with Japan. Instead of higher education at a campus such as Stanford, she was accepted only at relocation camps, first in Arcadia, Calif.
NEWS
January 21, 1991 | By Carrie Rickey, Inquirer Movie Critic
Director Alan Parker, the Englishman whose controversial Mississippi Burning made a pair of white FBI agents the heroes of the civil rights movement, almost atones for this historical travesty in Come See the Paradise. His new movie chronicles that low moment during World War II when the U.S. government, fearing possible Japanese invasion of California, interned 100,000 Japanese-Americans in concentration camps for "national security" reasons. Most were American citizens. Despite similar "national security" fears, the government did not intern naturalized citizens of Italian or German extraction.
NEWS
April 21, 1987 | By Aaron Epstein, Inquirer Washington Bureau
Revisiting what is generally regarded as one of the most shameful chapters in American history, the Supreme Court yesterday heard an attorney argue that the U.S. government defrauded the high court into upholding the imprisonment of 120,000 Japanese-Americans during World War II. "They seek their day in court," declared Benjamin L. Zelenko, speaking for the victims and their descendants. He implored the justices to permit his clients to seek compensation for property losses they suffered when they were rounded up, uprooted from their homes and herded into prison camps in several states after Japan attacked Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941.
NEWS
June 25, 2014 | By Jeff Gammage, Inquirer Staff Writer
Grayce Uyehara, 94, who as a retired Philadelphia-area social worker helped lead the national redress movement for Japanese Americans interned during World War II, died Sunday at Virtua Memorial hospital in Mount Holly. Her calm, persistent presence and truth telling helped push the federal government to formally apologize and to offer a $20,000-per-person reparation. During a decadelong campaign, she insisted that the war-era imprisonment was not only a Japanese issue but an American one, threatening the rights of all. If Japanese Americans could be summarily jailed during one war - losing their homes, jobs, and savings, she told the senators and representatives she lobbied - it could happen to anyone.
NEWS
September 24, 1987 | By Jeanne Kiyomi Goka
In the days that followed the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor, my maternal grandmother dug several trenches near her tiny farm cabin on the Palos Verdes Peninsula in California. Into them she poured the minutiae of her 50 years - jewelry, dishes, tea service, scrolls, books written in the Kanji: things Japanese. All of this she covered with shovelfuls of earth. Today I see her, a small solitary woman, bent over her shovel, then standing to rest her back. Maybe looking for a few moments at the green-blue Pacific, looking west.
NEWS
November 12, 2002 | By Edward Colimore INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Don Seki was playing poker with a former high school teacher on the morning of Dec. 7, 1941, and didn't hear about the Pearl Harbor attack until an excited friend rushed in with the news. He said he and other Japanese Americans living on Oahu west of Pearl Harbor soon found themselves under surveillance by military police and classified as "enemy aliens. " On the same day, Harry Fukuhara was working as a gardener in Glendale, Calif., and was immediately fired from his job. He said he and other Japanese Americans who "looked like the enemy" were subjected to early curfews and were eventually rounded up in internment camps.
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NEWS
December 11, 2015
ISSUE | FRACKING Industry needs rules The fracking industry has effectively controlled recent Pennsylvania budget negotiations, buying its way out of a severance tax by throwing massive amounts of money at state lawmakers - $17.9 million spent on lobbying and $2.8 million on campaign contributions in the most recent cycle. You can follow the money at marcellusmoney.org as you envision handshake deals in smoke-filled rooms. When will this industry finally be held accountable to the people of the commonwealth?
BUSINESS
September 12, 2015 | By Chris Mondics, Inquirer Staff Writer
The family of the late Owen Roberts, a onetime U.S. Supreme Court justice and University of Pennsylvania law school dean, on Thursday announced an $8.6 million gift to the law school. The money, a bequest from the estate of Elizabeth Hamilton, Roberts' daughter, will be used for student financial aid. Roberts played a pivotal role on the Supreme Court during World War II, and voted against the Roosevelt administration in a case testing its policy of placing tens of thousands of Japanese Americans in internment camps.
BUSINESS
August 18, 2015 | By Chris Mondics, Inquirer Staff Writer
By day, Kermit Roosevelt toils as a constitutional law professor at the University of Pennsylvania, where he is known as an expert on law governing the U.S. military prison in Guantanamo, the Voting Rights Act, and the legal debate over President Obama's health-care plan. But after hours, he has an entirely different line of work. Roosevelt, the great-great-grandson of President Theodore Roosevelt, is carving out a parallel career as a novelist. His first novel, In the Shadow of the Law , a tale of intrigue centered on young Washington lawyers, was published in 2005 by Farrar, Straus & Giroux.
NEWS
February 13, 2015 | By Wendy Rosenfield, For The Inquirer
This year, Plays & Players Theatre dedicated its season to "One Voice," or, as artistic director Daniel Student explains, one-person shows "about what it takes for someone to go from a concerned citizen to an active citizen. " The fourth production in this series, Jeanne Sakata's Hold These Truths , confronts the legacy of the so-called internment camps of World War II. Created as a result of Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor, they were filled with people of Japanese ancestry who were held for the duration of the war. In the play, which starts previews Thursday, Makoto Hirano plays Gordon Hirabayashi.
NEWS
June 25, 2014 | By Jeff Gammage, Inquirer Staff Writer
Grayce Uyehara, 94, who as a retired Philadelphia-area social worker helped lead the national redress movement for Japanese Americans interned during World War II, died Sunday at Virtua Memorial hospital in Mount Holly. Her calm, persistent presence and truth telling helped push the federal government to formally apologize and to offer a $20,000-per-person reparation. During a decadelong campaign, she insisted that the war-era imprisonment was not only a Japanese issue but an American one, threatening the rights of all. If Japanese Americans could be summarily jailed during one war - losing their homes, jobs, and savings, she told the senators and representatives she lobbied - it could happen to anyone.
NEWS
November 22, 2013 | By Michael Matza, Inquirer Staff Writer
Seventy years ago, Saburo Kitagawa was released from a World War II internment camp for Japanese Americans, enlisted in a special "Nisei" unit of the infantry, fought on the battlefields of Europe, and was twice wounded by shrapnel while serving his country. His combat team in the 100th Infantry Battalion was made up entirely of Japanese Americans. They stormed a German-controlled mountaintop abbey in Italy, rescued a trapped battalion in southern France - risking their lives while also confronting the anti-Japanese attitudes of the era. This week, a retired Army general undertook his own mission from Hawaii.
NEWS
November 16, 2013 | By Jeff Gammage, Inquirer Staff Writer
Nearly everyone knows that Japanese Americans were imprisoned in internment camps during World War II. And many people know that during the Reagan administration, the federal government offered a formal apology and a $20,000-per-person reparation. But hardly anybody knows that it was Grayce Uyehara, a retired Philadelphia social worker, who helped lead the national grassroots effort to win redress for Japanese Americans who lost not only their freedom but their homes, jobs, and savings.
NEWS
May 27, 2013
By John C. Church Jr. After seeing the film 42 , I was reminded of the quote that adorns Jackie Robinson's gravestone: "A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives. " This Memorial Day I'll be thinking of those who had an impact. That includes friends with whom I served, but also some others. When I met Cpl. Thomas Turner, a World War II Marine, he was wearing his Presidential Gold Medal. Turner, a Montford Point Marine, volunteered for service after President Franklin D. Roosevelt barred the military from refusing employment on the basis of race, creed, color, or national origin.
NEWS
October 25, 2012 | By John Timpane, Inquirer Staff Writer
The book chosen for next year's One Book, One Philadelphia tells a story many American families keep hidden in the attics of memory. For that reason alone, it's a very American tale. It's Julie Otsuka's Buddha in the Attic , a fictional retelling of the personal odysseys of hundreds of Japanese "picture brides" who sailed from Japan to the United States in the 1920s to marry men, most of them itinerant Japanese workers without other options, who had arranged for a wife to be sent over.
NEWS
April 20, 2007
Dear South Korea: Please stop apologizing. It is not your fault. Don't get us wrong. It is touching and impressive how you, as a nation, seem crestfallen over the trail of death left on an American college campus by an immigrant from your land. You have held candlelight vigils at our embassy and your president has expressed shock - three times, so far. But, really, the suspect came to America as a child. He was raised here. Maybe we should be apologizing to you for not taking better care of him. Or maybe the ugly twists that the human spirit can take are just unfathomable.
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