The deal was the Japanese recruited from the Concentration camps went to the European theater with the 442nd Infantry. Something to remember is very few Japanese from Hawaii were rounded up. Problem was they ran many of the businesses there, the Military stepped in, told Hoover and company to back off.
California was different, it was mostly a land grab by Governor Warren's cronies.
As such Hawaiian Japanese were able to volunteer for other branches of service where they were prized as linguists.
Donovan recruited a number Japanese Americans for the OSS
Here's a page dedicated to them straight off the CIA website:
Used to know one old guy who served with the USMC that was Hawaiian Japanese, he was hazed badly in basic. Said it wasn't until they hit the first beaches that he won any respect.
Thanks for the information. Pretty cool to know. My grandpa was in the Army. All I know is that the Japanese US soldiers and Japanese/Hawaiian US soldiers were quite a hit with the Japanese ladies during occupation according to my grandma. Hah!
Do you know whether he was drafted or a volunteer ?
It's kind of sad, all the focus has been in the 442nd
there were small scattered Japanese communities outside Hawaii and California
Hawaii was also a bit odd in that Japanese had started settling in there in small number prior to American mercenaries seizing control of the islands. As there was a serious shortage of Japanese ladies most of the Men took native Hawaiian wives. By 41' you had third generation families their running some serious farms that supplied all the fresh produce to the US stations and bases there. Would have been a complete disaster to round everyone up in the islands.
Read another article years ago, seems many of the mixed blood ladies were local bar girls. The claim was large scale removal would have hammered the Red Light districts
there just were not hardly any Caucasian gals in the Bordellos, mostly mixtures of Native, Japanese and some Philippino.
Another cute factoid
my high school English teacher was a survivor of Dec. 7th 41'
He used to tell of Japanese that came in following the attack as general contractors, there was just so much that needed doing in the aftermath the Navy put out a call to the farmers & carpenters for assistance. He was certain a number of the young Men were recruited on the scene. He stated, one day they were there, next day a few dozen he knew were just spirited away for "training".
It's not like America had many Japanese linguists or even folks with a basic understanding of that particular culture. It was completely alien, probably was pretty much alien to younger Hawaiian Japanese, in short many of them seriously viewed themselves as Americans first and the same was true in California.
As far as the Occupation after VJ day
One of my Dad's co-workers had a War Bride from the Japans
as she explained when the Emperor capitulated unconditionally pretty much any American serviceman was a superior, even to the nobility. It was an ancient Warrior culture rooted in their own superiority. Suddenly they were thrust into a completely new normal
Old girl stated plainly one day when our families were visiting how great an honor it was for her family when an American Officer chose her.
I heard similar things from another War bride from Osaka. Her family was old noble caste. Grandfather literally gave the girl to an Officer along with the family ancestrial swords and some armor
Just saying it's not really like how the media remembers it.
There's several wonderful books written by some of the Imperial troops that refused to surrender, tremendous reads on pure survival. Some of these guys were still in the jungle up into the 70s.
Another interesting one is Bye Bye Black Sheep written by Masajiro "Mike" Kawato, a Japanese Imperial Ace who claimed to have been the one who shot down Pappy Boyington.
Post war Mike moved to America, ended up becoming one of Pappy's drinking buddies.
Used to see Mike selling his book and vintage Japanese things at gun shows, pretty sure I have at least two or three autographed copies of it. He was an extremely close friend of my late Uncle.