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Nisei Soldiers Who Fought for the Emperor

posted by Randall

Nissei soldiers fight for Japanese emperorThe Japanese American Museum of San Jose (JAMsj) will present the public program, “Fighting for the Emperor: Nisei Soldiers in the WWII Imperial Armed Forces” on Saturday, February 7, 2015 at 1:00 p.m. at the Japanese American Museum of San Jose, 535 N. Fifth Street, San Jose, CA. This event will address how WWII dramatically altered the lives of thousands of Japanese Americans living in Japan, when Pearl Harbor was attacked and who served in the Japanese military.

Guest speakers include Dr. Michael Jin assistant professor of history at Texas A&M University, who will discuss his research in a presentation entitled “The War and Its Aftermath: Nisei Draftees in the Imperial Armed Forces.” Dr. Jin’s talk will be followed by a discussion with two

Japanese Americans who served in the Japanese military during WWII: Peter Sano and Jimmie Matsuda. Peter Sano, originally from Brawley, California, was adopted in Japan, and drafted into the Japanese Army. He served in Manchuria, and was later held in a Siberian POW camp for nearly three years. He returned to the U.S. in 1952 and later wrote a book about his experiences entitled 1,000 Days in Siberia. Jimmie Matsuda, born in Hood River, Oregon, became ill while visiting Japan at the age of 11, which led to his family’s decision to stay in Japan. Following high school graduation in 1943, Matsuda volunteered for the Japanese Navy and became a kamikaze pilot. His unit was sent to Okinawa in 1945, but because of his knowledge of English, he was ordered to stay behind to translate U.S. military code. He returned to California in the early 1950s.

Cost: Free with admission to the museum (non-members, $5; students and seniors over ag 65, $3; JAMsj members and children under 12, free). RSVP: Contact PublicPrograms@jamsj.org or call (408) 294-3138 to reserve a spot.

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