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Japanese and Muslim Americans Wrap Up Journey to Manzanar

By Louis Chan
AsAmNews National Correspondent

Manzanar Pilgrimage
Carol Lin was among the ambassadors who lead the Manzanar Pilgrimage in 2015

Dozens of Japanese American and Muslim Americans are scheduled to wrap up their three day weekend pilgrimage to Manzanar today.

They are visiting the site of one of ten incarceration camps where 120,000 Japanese Americans were imprisoned during World War II. 10,000 were put behind barbed wire at Manzanar.

It is not a coincidence that Muslim Americans are accompanying Japanese Americans on this pilgrimage.

“There is the possibility of history being repeated just as it was in 1942 when 120 thousand innocent American citizens of Japanese ancestry were forced to leave their homes and were incarcerated,” said Marielle Tsukamoto is Co-President of Florin JACL which organized this trip along with the Council of American Islamic Relations-Sacramento Valley. “We must learn from the mistakes of the past. Justice is a matter of continuing education, she told ABC10.”

The current Islamphobia being felt by Muslim Americans in this country along with the current political rhetoric make the summit timely.

In a recent blog post, Kristi Lin talked about what she learned at last year’s pilgrimage.

“I have learned so much about what it is like to be a practicing Muslim in today’s political climate and why we need alliances between communities in order to address the civil rights issues we face today,” said Lin. “The pilgrimage inspired me to work as a Japanese American, not just as a Manzanar Ambassador, on raising awareness about the relevancy of the incarceration and preventing such injustices from happening again.”


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