Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Did Henry 'Scoop' Jackson regret his enthusiastic support for internment of Japanese-Americans in WWII?

The Henry 'Scoop' Jackson Society claims he did:

In America, Henry ‘Scoop’ Jackson initially believed the internment of Japanese-Americans to be a necessary action in the fighting of the Second World War, but he later realised that this action was a mistake.

Oliver Kamm (who possibly could be getting his information from the H'S'JS page, or be the contributor) also believes this:

I have a suspicion that you refer to his support for the shameful injustice of the internment of Japanese Americans in WW2 because it may be one of the few things you know about him. Yes, he was wrong, and he regretted it.

Others aren't so sure. Robert Kaufamn, in his biography of 'Scoop', makes no reference to any 'regret'. And David Neiwert, who has written a book on Japanese/American internment, has noted on his blog that:

In all my research, I could, however, find no evidence that Jackson ever expressed any regret for his wartime activism against Japanese Americans, even as reparations were being discussed late in his career. He remained mum, hoping no one would remember his own role in the affair.

Anyway, it'll be far easier to prove he did than he didn't (if he did), and so I've emailed the head (Alan Mendoza, a Conservative councillor in Brent)
of the Henry 'Scoop' Jackson Society asking where their information has come from and hopefully this matter of historical fact can be cleared up quite quickly.

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