GARDENA — Aiko Herzig-Yoshinaga and Marjorie Lee will discuss and sign “Speaking Out for Personal Justice: Site Summaries of Testimonies & Witnesses Registry from the U.S. Commission on Wartime Relocation and Internment of Civilians (CWRIC), 1981” on Sunday, March 18, from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Bridge: JCI Heritage Center’s program of the Gardena Valley Japanese Cultural Institute (JCI).

Aiko Herzig-Yoshinaga

“Speaking Out for Personal Justice” is a compilation of meticulously cataloged summaries of all 789 oral testimonies from the CWRIC’s 1981 public hearings in such cities as Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, Chicago, New York and Washington, D.C. These heart-rending testimonies literally gave voice to the hardships and oppression that people suffered in the camps and in exile.

After the hearings, the CWRIC’S subsequent report and recommendations were key factors in the passage of the Civil Liberties Act of 1988 (which granted an apology and token redress to camp-era survivors and their families).

Lee is a librarian and archivist in the UCLA Asian American Studies Center. Herzig-Yoshinaga is a community activist who did archival research for the CWRIC as well as the National Council for Japanese American Redress’ class-action lawsuit and the coram nobis cases of Fred Korematsu, Gordon Hirabayashi and Minoru Yasui.

This event will be held in the JCI Hall, 1964 W. 162nd St., Gardena. For information, call (310) 324-6611, email or visit or

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  1. As a German born interned together with Japanese in Crystal City Texas, I hope you win the class action suits pending, which none of us will ever receive for our losses. Even though we were interned longer, we have been excluded from your actions. I did attend that Chicago event, and was shot down with the words.\, “This is exclusively for Japanese”
    We were not afforded the luxury of a single minute to dispose of property as we were arrested , all too frequently,in the middle of the night. Some West Coast Japanese literally interned themselves by not promptly following the exclusion orders, Had I had that privilege I would have left the area immediately.
    I admire your steadfast cohesive ethnic bonding, we Germans are just too quick to assimilate and disapear into the melting pot. Eberhard

  2. In Ludecke v. Watkins, a German immigrant who was interned filed an anti internment case. The Supreme Court ruled that when the U.S. goes to war, all immigrants from that country are subject to internment and or deportation at the government’s whim and the immigrant has no due process rights nor can a court intervene in the deportation. It doesn’t matter if you have an American spouse or children or property. Your legal status is now Enemy Alien and you could for no reason other than your ethnicity, be locked up or deported.

    Truth is, few remember the internment. We remember the Relocation and call it the internment. In the Internment, the FBI came and took you away, leaving your family to fend for itself with all of your neighbors being left to assume that you are a spy. Often times the interned was just the husband, although there are examples of women being taken without their husbands. In Hawaii, the children were often left to fend for themselves if both parents were taken. I know one of the children that this happened to. There was no relocation in Hawaii. Some Jews were interned because the government didn’t differentiate between ethnic Jew and ethnic German. More German immigrants were interned than Japanese immigrants around 60,000 German. More Japanese were relocated than Germans aound 100,000 thousand We don’t know how many thousands of German and Italian immigrants and Americans were relocated.