By Curtis Narimatsu
Hysteria overcame fact when Tokyo Rose Iva Toguri Ikuko D’Aquino (1916-2006), zoologist,Â was imprisoned by Tojo’s warlocks after she visited her ailingÂ family member in Japan.Â Under coercion/torture, she became Tojo’sÂ Tokyo Rose [anti-U.S. propaganda to disrupt U.S. military morale].Â She was unwilling like POW John McCain.Â She was much later fully exoneratedÂ & today is ennobled as an American hero.
Prince Konoe was Tojo’sÂ nemesis & refused to exonerate principal/fully guilty Hirohito as orderedÂ by MacArthur [who used Hirohito to ensure post-WWII stability].Â ForÂ this, Konoe was indicted as war criminal but chose death/suicide over folly.Â “BeastÂ of Bataan” Masaharu Homma should’ve released POWs after supply ran out fromÂ central hdqtrs.Â But a soldier to the core, Homma could not releaseÂ enemy combatants, lest he be hanged for treason. Nonetheless,Â Geneva Accords don’t excuse “following orders from high command”Â w/crimes vs. humanity.Â Â Homma was shot [preferable to hanging].Â Ironically,Â Homma was U.S.’ greatest empathizer, being Japan’s wisest Anglophile/anti-Tojo officer [Tojo learned cross culturally under Nazis].
Today’s U.S. young whipÂ John Yoo justifies waterboarding.Â He could’ve just said politically he was followingÂ orders to Bush to do so.Â No, he had to be a Korean hot pickle/kimchee.Â So, if John Yoo’s soldier son [hypothetically] ever is tortured by waterboarding,Â what on earth kind of sorry ass excuse will John have to curtailÂ such unthinkable death knell?Â Â See, gang, this is the point â€”it couldÂ happen to you/your loved ones.Â Â Mengele [short on age/high onÂ hubris â€” Yoo see].Â Â â€” Curt
(Curtis Narimatsu isÂ a lifelong resident of Hilo who writes about the forgotten past such as the oldÂ plantation days & untold heroes.)