Friday, April 3, 2009

Friday Mieography

How about some controversy?

Born in Los Angeles, the daughter of two Japanese immigrants, Ive Ikuko Toguri was raised as a Methodist, and was a girl scout. She was fully raised in the United States, and graduated from University of California, Los Angeles, with a degree in Zoology. She worked in a shop her parents owned.
     In 1941, she sailed to Japan, to visit an ailing relative, and begin the study of medicine. Because she didn't have a passport, she was given a Certificate of Identification. She applied for a passport, in Sept. of 1941, as she was ready to come home. She didn't get an answer in time, and the attack on Pearl Harbor happened.
     The Japanese government rounded up the American's in Japan at that time, and pressured them to renounce their American citizenship. She refused. Since she did, she was declared and enemy alien, and the government would not issue her a war ration card. She found work as a typist at a Japanese news agency, and eventually, a typist at Radio Tokyo.
     In 1943, she, and other allied prisoners of war were forced to broadcast propaganda. Her show was called "The Zero Hour". She had been previously smuggling food into the POW camp, and initially refused to broadcast. She was reassured by other POW's that she would not have to say anything against the US. She hosted 340 broadcasts, and is the name now most associated with the moniker "Tokyo Rose". (many other Tokyo Rose's were out there, in similar conditions).
     She had the stage name "ann" (for announcer) and sometimes, Orphan Anne, and "your favorite enemy Anne", and mainly performed comedy sketches, and introduced music. She made 7 dollars a month, and continued to smuggle food to the POW's. In 1945, she married a Portugese citizen of Japanese-Portugese decent, but reused to take his citizenship.
     Ater Japan surrendered, she was arrested in Yokohama, Japan, trying to get money to get home. She spent a year in jail, and was released when no evidence could be provided that she had aided the Japanese Axis forces. She had been pregnant, and desperate to get home. She had the baby in Japan, and it died. She was re- arrested, and transported to San Francisco, where she was charged by the Fed's with treason.
     Her trial was very long, cost more than a half million dollars, and included 46 witnesses against her. She was found guilty on only one count, and given a stiff fine, and a ten year prison sentence. She was paroled after 6 years, 2 months, for good behavior.
     She resisted deportation, and moved to Chicago, where her father had opened a Mercantile Company. She worked there until 2006, when she died, pretty much forgotten. She never saw her husband again, as he was barred from ever coming to the US. They divorced after 30 years of forced separation.
    It was discovered, during an investigation piece by a Chicago reporter that the two witnesses who delivered the most damaging testimony against her had lied under oath. They stated that they had been threatened by the FBI and told what to say hours before the trial. President Ford granted her a full unconditional pardon in 1977, supported unamimously on both sides o the houses. She was restored her American Citizenship, which had been abrogated because of her conviction. She died at 90, of natural causes.
Of course, the controversy is whether or not she was guilty of treason. Some are unconvinced that she could have been forced to broadcast, others, believe her. What do you think?


sybil law said...

I think she was one helluva survivor, and did what she needed to do.
Awesome Mieography!

Daryl said...

I think that sometimes you do what you have to do ...

Like on Lost ... Jack was a putz .. Kate/Sawyer well they did the right thing OR is saving a potential psychopath/sociopath who you know will ruin your life stupid?

Anonymous said...

I agree with Daryl. Sometimes you do what you have to do.

Very interesting post.

Rikki said...

That was a very interesting post. Thanks for this. I agree with the others. You can't judge a person's actions if you have never been in the situation. You do what you have to do in order to survive. The witnesses and the FBI should be ashamed. What happened after the investigation? Any consequences for the wintnesses or the FBI people? Probably nothing worth mentioning.

Mimi said...

Oh my goodness, I knew none of this. Fascinating indeed.

Mary said...

Reading your mieographies makes me feel so ignorant. Once again, this is someone I'd never heard of, and what an interesting story!

Bubblewench said...

That is one awesome Mieography! What a woman! She survived. Isn't that enough?