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Former POW Dr. Lester Tenney met California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger

Please read the press release from the Simon Wiesenthal Center:

Ex-WWII POW Meets CA Governor for Support in Pressuring Japanese
Companies to Apologize for WWII Slave Labor



Book review article, "ADAPT OR DIE" posted.

Kinue Tokudome reviewed Mr. JD Merritt's remarkable POW memoir, which he describes as follows:  "Truth is the soul of this book and it is written exactly as I lived it."

Please go to "JD Merritt's memoir."


Op-ed article on high speed rail project and Japanese companies’ POW forced labor

"Japan is responsible for teaching," written by Dr. Alfred Balitzer and Rabbi Abraham Cooper was published in the Orlando Sentinel on December 3.

Japanese translation is available here.


 "Grandsons of Japanese POW and Bataan Death March Survivor Travel to Japan"

Recently, Mr. Timothy Ruse, grandson of former POW late Mr. Carl Ruse, traveled to Japan with his wife and brother. He gave speeches at Nanzan School in Nagoya and visited the factory where his grandfather had been forced to work. He also wanted to find the boy who was kind to his grandfather.

Please go to Grandsons' trip to Japan to read his report.

The speech Mr. Ruse gave in  Japan can be found here.


Former POW Dr. Lester Tenney's friendship with the Japanese people

Ms. Yuka Ibuki translated articles published by the Asahi Shimbun and AP.


Mr. Roger Mansell passed away

Founder and Director of Center for Research: Allied POWS Under the Japanese  Mr. Roger Mansell passed away on October 25. 

Roger created a massive database on Allied soldiers who became POWs of the Japanese and helped many former POWs, their descendants, researchers, and anyone who wanted to learn about the POW history find information they needed. He will be greatly missed.

More information on Roger and his work can be found at:
Roger Mansell (October 8, 1935 - October 25, 2010)                                                                                                                             Mr. Roger Mansell Roger's last message                                                                     Photo credit: Dan Sullivan 
from the website of Hoover Institution
Hoover Institution, Stanford University
Research Collection of Roger Mansell, Concerning World War II Prisoners of War



A Study in Valor: The Faith of a Bataan Death March Survivor

Interview with the author, Judge William T. Garner, posted.

Please go to A Study in Valor



 “I want to meet the boy who saved my grandfather”

Japanese newspaper, Chunichi Shimbun, published an article about a grandson's search for a Japanese boy who saved his POW grandfather.

  Chunichi Shimbun, Sep. 11



Picture report on "Japanese/American POW Friendship Program" posted.


Please go to POWs trip to Japan, 2010


Japanese/American POW Friendship Program

The government of Japan has invited six former POWs and two descendants to their country for a week-long visit beginning September 12.

The group is being led by Dr. Lester Tenney, the last National Commander of the American Defenders of Bataan and Corregidor.  Here are the participants:

            Lester Tenney         Joe Alexander            Ed Jackfert          Robert Rosendahl

             Earl Szwabo           Donald  Versaw       Jan Thompson           Nancy Kragh 
father Robert. Thompson   father Clarence White

* For more information visit the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan

   Former Prisoners of War (POWs) from the United States Invited to Japan


Op-ed article on Japanese companies' responsibility

San Jose Mercury News published an op-ed article
"Japanese bidders on high speed rail should have to apologize to World War II POWs" written by
By Alfred Balitzer and Abraham Cooper.

Japanese translation is available here.


California high speed train project and POW forced labor

The Simon Wiesenthal Center issued a press release regarding the bill passed by the California legislature that would require companies submitting bids for the state’s high-speed rail project to disclose their conduct during WWII.

Please go to the website of the Simon Wiesenthal Center:
 “Japanese firms must meet same standards demanded of European firms.

Photo: Dr. Lester Tenney, survivor of the Bataan Death March and forced labor at Mitsui coal mine. with Rabbi Abraham Cooper, Associate Dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center


Article on the POW invitation

Mainichi Shimbun published an article on July 31 about  the Japanese government's program to invite American former POWs to Japan.

“This expression of kindness by the Japanese people will be an important opportunity to open up the hearts of the former POWs, but at the same time, we cannot forget the terrible days that we spent as slave laborers. We want the companies that carried out such to carry out their responsibility.

                                                                                               -- Lester Tenney

Entire article:  POW invitation


POW resolution

Congressman Mike Honda has introduced on July 28 a resolution welcoming and commending the Government of Japan for extending an official apology to all United States former prisoners of war from the Pacific War and moving forward in planning to invite surviving members to Japan.

The House of Representatives requests that the Government of Japan respect the wishes and sensibilities of the United States prisoners of war by providing an appropriate program for lasting remembrance and reconciliation that recognizes their sacrifices and forced labor.   
                                                                              Congressman Honda with former POWs      Entire text  H. RES. 1567                             Mr. and  Mrs. Jackfert and  Dr. and Mrs. Tenney


Op-ed piece on Japanese companies’ responsibility

“Issue of Abuse of Allied POWs: Government and Companies Should Apologize” was published in the Mainichi Shimbun, evening edition, 7/26/2010.


Thoughts on Fourth of July

Mr. Edward Jackfert (89), who served twice as National Commander of American Defenders of Bataan and Corregidor, was Grand Marshall at the Fourth of July parade held in his hometown, Wellsburg, WV. Here are his thoughts on that day:

August 15, 2010 will be the 65th anniversary of the end of World War II.  Having suffered through and surviving World War II,   I have discovered that war is nothing but DEATH AND DESTRUCTION. 

I along with my wife Henrietta have devoted much of our remaining lifetime in remembering those who fought so gallantly in defending the Philippine Islands from December 8, 1941 until May 10, 1942, and the terrible price we have paid in maintaining our freedom.

This effort will be consummated through expansion of a museum  relating to the war in the Far East which is now located in Wellsburg, West Virginia.  The museum is educational in nature with a sense of memorializing those who died defending our nation. We are hoping that we have somehow contributed to this cause by informing the world of the futility of war and that some other means should be found to solve international problems.  Plans have been drawn up for the expansion of the current museum and an international drive for funds to assist in its construction is now being pursued.      Edward and Henrietta Jackfert                                                                                                                                                           

Mr. Jackfert (arrow) at Nisshin Flour Mill POW camp where he was liberated


Article in the Foreign Policy

Mr. Christian Caryl, former Tokyo correspondent for Newsweek, wrote about  the responsibility of Japanese companies for WWII POW forced labor in his article, "Unfinished Business."

He wrote, "For 65 years, Japanese corporations have escaped responsibility for abusing American POWs during World War II."

Please read the entire article on the Foreign Policy website.  
Japanese translation is available here.


Concerns raised on a book about civilian POW experience

Essay, “Former Civilian POWs of the Japanese Disapprove the Inaccurate Account
 of their History as Told in Child P.O.W.—A Memoir of Survival

FEPOW Remembrance Service 2010 to be held in the UK on August 15

Although we focus on the experiences of American POWs, Mr. Arthur Lane, Chairman of NATIONAL EX SERVICES ASSOCIATION, which organizes this event, has been a regular visitor to our site.  We appreciate encouraging messages he often sends us.

More information on Remembrance Service


Press release on Japan's decision to compensate Siberian Internees

Three past Commanders of the American Defenders of Bataan and Corregidor, Dr. Lester Tenney, Mr. Edward Jackfert and Mr. Ralph Levenberg, issued the following press release.


Survivors of Japan's WWII POW Camps Call on Japan for the Same Treatment as Siberian Internees


Bridge for Peace

"Obstacle hindering mutual understanding between Japan and the Philippine on history," written by Ms. Naoko Jin, Founder and President of "Bridge for Peace, (BFP)" was posted.

BFP has been delivering messages between former Japanese soldiers and the people in the Philippines. 



New Memorial Plaque at Soto Dam

This is to report the completion of the project, posted in this news section on November 15, 2007. 

The revised new plaque was unveiled at this years' Memorial Service for the victims of the Soto Dam, and Mr. Philip Eakins made a speech along with the Commander of the US Sasebo Naval Base and the Mayor of Sasebo City. I extend my heartfelt gratitude to the bereaved families, researchers and everybody concerned, for their corporation to dig out and memorize the truth.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                    --- Yuka Ibuki

Please read "Memorial to American POWs in Sasebo receives an update"


Op-ed on Japanese companies' responsibility for WWII forced labor

Mainichi Shimbun, Japan's third-largest national newspaper, published on May 10, “Japanese Companies Should Apologize to Former POWs for Their WWII Forced Labor and Abuse,” written by Dr. Lester Tenney and Kinue Tokudome.   Japanese original 

Please go to   Mainichi op-ed  for English translation. 



POW invitation program

Yomiuri  Shimbun, Japan's largest newspaper, published an article on the POW invitation.

Please go to "Gov't to invite survivors of Bataan Death March."

Please also read last year's Yomiuri article on the same topic:   "POW invitation program." 


 Descendants Group Convention

                                                                                (photo courtesy of Mr. Dan Traub)

First National Convention of “Descendants Group, an Auxiliary of the American Defenders of Bataan and Corregidor" was held in Reno, Nevada on April 7-11.

Here are some highlights.


Essay on American POWs of the Japanese won 2nd place

Anthony Zendejas was awarded 2nd place in the VFW National Voice of Democracy Essay Contest held in Washington DC on March 7, and was presented with the Charles Kuralt (CBS Evening News Correspondent) Memorial Scholarship in the amount of $16,000.

Anthony competed against 54 representatives: one from each state, and the Department of the Pacific Areas, the Department of Europe, the Department of Latin America/Caribbean and, the Department of Washington D.C. 

Learn more about his winning essay  and his one-person play:

Anthony with VFW National Commander Thomas J. Tradewell
and VFW Ladies Auxiliary President Jan Tittle



Dr. Tenney wrote for Japan Times

Japan Times published an op-ed article written by Dr. Lester Tenney, the last National Commander of the American Defenders of Bataan and Corregidor. He wrote:

The U.S.-Japan Alliance was created and is maintained by the contributions and sacrifices of members of the American military dedicated to creating peace and democracy in Japan. The American POWs of Japan are part of this Alliance history.

Please go to "Former POW rejects idea that DPJ is anti-American."

Japanese translation is available here


New essay, "My Friend Louis 'Lou' Curtis (1919-2010)," written by Mr. Don Versaw posted. 

Mr. Curtis, who recently passed away, was Don's friend since 1940 and his fellow POW.

Please go to Don's essay on his friend.


New essay, "Our Director, Mr. Clay Perkins, helped to expose lies in the Atomic bomb book," posted.

The publisher of The Last Train from Hiroshima, which producer James Cameron was planning to base his movie on, has stopped printing copies of this book as a result of the efforts made by our director, Mr. Clay Perkins, and others.

Please go to  Perkins and the Last Train from Hiroshima



A Japanese scholar's paper on the POW history

"The Treatment of Prisoners of War by the Imperial Japanese Army and Navy Focusing on the Pacific War," written by Dr. Kyoichi Tachikawa is now available online at:

Dr. Tachikawa is a Senior Research Fellow, Military History Department, National Institute for Defense Studies (NIDS), the main policy research arm of the Ministry of Defense of Japan.

The original Japanese version was published in
Boueikenkyusho Kiyo [NIDS Security Studies] Volume 10 Number 1 (September, 2007)

The English translation was published in the NIDS Security Reports No. 9 (December, 2008)


Resolution by Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) on the POW issue posted

Please go to "Support Former POW Slave Labor Claims Against Japanese Firms."  


Anthony goes to Washington DC

Anthony Zendejas, who has been studying the history of POWs of the Japanese and making many presentations, won 1st place for Washington State Veterans of Foreign Wars Voice of Democracy Audio/Essay contest and will compete for the national title in Washington DC.

Please go to "Anthony goes to Washington DC."

 with VFW National Commander in Chief, Thomas J. Tradewell Sr.