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Rebuilding Japan

I don’t think they [Japanese] blamed the Americans for the occupation, the devastation and the loss that Japan suffered. They blamed the [Japanese] military vis-à-vis the Japanese government as a unit. The military is gone so they can blame them. The only thing that they blamed Americans, including us, is the use of the atomic bomb in Hiroshima, Nagasaki. But other than that, the devastation and all that, the only thing they thought about at that time, but I don’t think they were delving in the past. By that I mean they weren’t just moaning about the past. What they were thinking about what how to rebuild, how to come back. It was really gratifying to see so many people rebuilding. Of course, at that time, supplies were very short. Lumber was short, materials were short but whatever they could find they would put together and rebuild what they needed for their livelihood. And for food, they raised vegetables and scrounged around of course. Many of them, especially Japanese Americans, used to give them their rations. We got K rations. We couldn’t eat them of course, so we gave them to Japanese. The cigarettes of course we gave to the smokers among the Japanese.


Allied Occupation of Japan (1945-1952) Japan

Date: May 29, 2006

Location: Hawai`i, US

Interviewer: Akemi Kikumura Yano

Contributed by: Watase Media Arts Center, Japanese American National Museum

Interviewee Bio

Francis "FranK" Y. Sogi was born in Lanihau, Kona, on the Big Island of Hawai‘i in 1923, the youngest of five children born to Issei parents who farmed vegetables, bananas and coffee.

Francis began studies at the University of Hawai‘i (UH) in 1941 at 18 years old, and—as required--served in the Reserve Officer Training Corps (R.O.T.C.) to prepare for military service. After the bombing of Pearl Harbor, all R.O.T.C. students were inducted into the Hawai‘i Territorial Guard. However, he was soon discharged as being an “enemy alien,” and he returned to UH to continue his education. Men at UH with knowledge of the Japanese language were being recruited to join the United States Military Intelligence Service, so Francis volunteered and in 1944 was sent to Camp Savage and Fort Snelling, Minnesota, for training.

After serving in Japan, translating documents for the U.S. counterintelligence corps, he once again enrolled at UH in 1947. He completed his studies in 1949 and went on to Fordham Law School in New York City while his wife, Sarah, attended Columbia University. He passed the bar exam in December 1952 and was admitted to the New York state bar. In 1953, Frank was asked to serve at the Tokyo office of the law firm of Hunt, Hill and Betts and represented Fortune 500 companies doing license agreements, joint ventures and investments of all kinds. From 1959 - 1984 he was with Miller Montgomery Spalding & Sogi, and in 1984 he joined Kelley Drye & Warren until his retirement in 1993.

Because of their growing philanthropic interests, Francis and his wife Sarah created the Francis and Sarah Sogi Foundation, a charitable foundation that currently supports the work of several non-profit organizations.

He passed away on November 3, 2011(November 2011)

 

Robert (Bob) Kiyoshi Okasaki
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Robert (Bob) Kiyoshi Okasaki

Wife's family in Japan

(b.1942) Japanese American ceramist, who has lived in Japan for over 30 years.

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Yukio Takeshita
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Yukio Takeshita

Impression of Japan upon arrival

(b.1935) American born Japanese. Retired businessman.

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Richard Kosaki
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Richard Kosaki

Devastation in Tokyo after World War II

(b. 1924) Political scientist, educator, and administrator from Hawai`i

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Art Shibayama
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Art Shibayama

Learning English upon discovering that family could not return to Peru

(1930-2018) Nisei born in Peru. Taken to the United States during WWII.

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Roger Shimomura
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Roger Shimomura

Playing a racist game with other children

(b. 1939) Japanese American painter, printmaker & professor

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Marion Tsutakawa Kanemoto
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Marion Tsutakawa Kanemoto

Living in Japan during the war, preparing for U.S. bombings

(b. 1927) Japanese American Nisei. Family voluntarily returned to Japan during WWII.

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Marion Tsutakawa Kanemoto
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Marion Tsutakawa Kanemoto

Participating in military drills in school in Japan during the war

(b. 1927) Japanese American Nisei. Family voluntarily returned to Japan during WWII.

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Marion Tsutakawa Kanemoto
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Marion Tsutakawa Kanemoto

Hearing anti-American war propaganda from a teacher

(b. 1927) Japanese American Nisei. Family voluntarily returned to Japan during WWII.

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Marion Tsutakawa Kanemoto
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Marion Tsutakawa Kanemoto

The hardships of life in Japan during World War II

(b. 1927) Japanese American Nisei. Family voluntarily returned to Japan during WWII.

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Shizuko Kadoguchi
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Shizuko Kadoguchi

Strict school policy of separating boys and girls in Japan

(b.1920) Japanese Canadian Nisei. Established the Ikenobo Ikebana Society of Toronto

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Paul Terasaki
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Paul Terasaki

His experiences in Chicago after WWII

(b.1929) Pioneer medical researcher in tissue transfer and organ transplantation.

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Enson Inoue
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Enson Inoue

The reason for coming to Japan

(b. 1967) Hawai`i-born professional fighter in Japan

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Bill Hashizume
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Bill Hashizume

Sent a letter to his brother in Canada after the war

(b. 1922) Canadian Nisei who was unable to return to Canada from Japan until 1952

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Bill Hashizume
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Bill Hashizume

Liaison between the Americans and the Japanese

(b. 1922) Canadian Nisei who was unable to return to Canada from Japan until 1952

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Masako Iino
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Masako Iino

The Japanese society reacts to Nikkei living in Japan (Japanese)

Tsuda College President, researcher of Nikkei history

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