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Who was Tokyo Rose?

2012-11-07 | 🔗

During World War II, Allied troops often listened to Japanese propaganda, and they nick-named the English-speaking, female broadcasters "Tokyo Rose." After the war, the hunt to find them was on -- and Iva d'Aquino found herself on trial for treason.

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This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
This episode is brought to you by Maloney cookies. Look sometimes that long, Zen yoga classes, just not in the cards, so maybe a cookie, is peppered farm. Olano believes you should make some time for yourself once in a while. I know I have a particular space in my sewing room that I like to just take a few minutes. Every day I sit there. I think about things. It's kind of like meditation and munching at the same time yummy beautiful cookie flavour. It makes it luxurious and delightful and I always feel recharge mulatto cookies. Are truly a treat worthy of your me time, their delicate and crispy, with luxuriously rich chocolate in the middle. You really want to keep these just You so remember to save something for yourself with peppered farm Olano. Hey listeners. I wanted to tell you about a new podcast from my heart. Radio called the women hosted by read it is,
fascinating and deep dive interview show where rose talks, to change makers in disruptors and she finds out what really drives them. So she will ask to that? What was your first stand and how do you navigate success and failure, and really the cost of fighting for others. These interviews are really personal and their candid answer those there a little bit crass, but they are always really enlightening. You can lose these firebrands and take away lessons that will help you navigate your own life and for your own path. The day season includes women like Valerie Plain, the former CIA agents, who is now running for Congress and blower and pediatrician Doktor Mona Hannah, a teacher who exposed the flint water crisis and came the centre of eight swirling swirling amount of problems. the legendary Buffy Saint Marie Sixty songwriter and activist. I have personal interest in this show his I adore, rose and executive produce it and I think you're really going to enjoy the way that gets into these conversations that feel like two friends talking and they
are an absolute delight, so subscribed to the women on the Iheart Radio, app on Apple podcast or wherever you get your podcast, Welcome to stuff you missed in history class from has worked, eleven walk into the past, unfair it out, and I'm too blaming truck reforming and though the plane I, while you are on your maternity leave, I did a few thoughts with co host and the very first. What I did was with Jonathan Stricklin of tax death, and when we were trying to figure out a topic, he threw out the idea of numbers stations and adona. Have you have you ever heard of member states? before not until there is not until there, though I hadn't either, I think, tat stuff. He did an episode on them, but they are shortwave. Radio stations that broadcast a sequence of numbers were sometimes a sequence of letters are words interspersed
little clips of music, and they appeared that people are quite sure when they appear, but probably some time, not long after world war, two there were used for spy communications, most likely. Some are still active. Today there really creepy founding Dublin, and I listened to a few before they certainly creepy? Kids? Music? Almost a? I just think this, because they listen to a lot of kids musically bat, they know, is one of the honour matic the music becomes on when you have one of those little kids, vibrating chairs or whatever it may be. The key would change and indian rate the air they are kind of like that. I couldn't find a clip like this. The fact that some of them even have children reading the numbers which adds to the creeping as that anyway, Jonathan and I talked about that a little bit decided not to do the opposite on that specifically, but I did go out searching for some of these number stations tote to listen to them and, after listening to some of those broad it reminded me of another war time-
radio related topic and a listener suggestion Tokyo arose, who is it is the english language voice of japanese propaganda during world war? Two there were a number of these radio personalities during the war at basically English speaking, broadcasters who were based and access territory and day indeed demoralising, allied troops with a number of things, including things to make them home grim or fabricated battle reports and predictions, and also plenty of pop music. That was the thing that the soldiers listening in the first place. The other kind of strange combination of that really because they needed something for the soldiers to tune in and part of that was the the homesick part you a lot of times. The announcer would be familiar sounding female voices that reminded them of harm, but in most cases the the names of these people I mean, there's access salutary Lord ha ha their sinister spam
in most cases the name was just really and allied nickname is not a real person. It was for a series of these anonymous broadcaster and in Tokyo roses case. There were probably actually about twenty. or more than twenty women broadcasting japanese propaganda in the Pacific. Some under real dj names like orphan an troops, Imagine that these generic Tokyo roses were said. Doktor says haunting them and making them miss home. At the same time, sometimes they would be easy rumours about who the real took the arose was maybe was General Toto's mistress. Maybe she was a holiday sir. She even been Amelia Erhard Menezes. I know those are some of the rumours going around out of the ameliorate, but most he's broadcaster names did Have real people behind them are released? one individual who had finally be named, including Sally and Lord ha ha
For Lord hides, William Joyce, a guy who was eventually executed for trees, then for actual valley is usually a woman named Mildred killers who did end up doing some prison time for treason and took him around the same way and because today's topic of course focuses on her we're going to start with a clip from a turkey arose. Herself energies think her own radio programme. Before we kick off our pod cast riding a man standing ready again on your morale, their environment. so the Tokyo rose you just heard with the dj. From an is actually are lady of the day. The person we're gonna talk about you might, Would he be able to tell that she didn't really fit the mould of the other Tokyo roses that we described earlier? For one thing she had occurred,
the voice, rather than a seductive one and she d These really funny over the top kind of blows to morale, rather than the real, crushing news or the job that people have come to expect from the other. he arose ass. She did you think sample of this thing that she was going to deliver a vicious assault on your morale before going on to stay quote. I know what It is some jive. It helps you relax and then play I don't want to go to work. It doesn't really come across as a very vicious assault on your morale. It's kind of funny, but out of all of the twenty plus took your roses, who are known to have broadcast to allied troops and civic it with this rose orphan and also known as either cookout gurry decree. No, who was tried and convicted of treason for her wartime work. Obviously she was a scapegoat
He was the face, if not actually the voice of a wartime enemy, a wartime enemy who became a much heated one, especially after the war, was over, and she even later told CBS News. Herself quote. I suppose they found someone and got the job done. They were all satisfied, it was any meaning mining and I was now how she got to Now, though, is truly surprising and involved wartime desperation and scruple, Journalism, cold war, posturing and a truly truly ill timed vacation. we're gonna go into that a little bit, but first we want to start with giving you a little background on either. She was in this day, which was basically a second generation. Japanese, emigrant and she'd been born on the of July, and nineteen. Sixteen in LOS Angeles and since her parents in her older brother had born in Japan. They couldn't the common, can citizens. However, they were there.
Seem to be at least a pretty quintessentially all american household. They lived for example, and mostly white neighbourhood, rather than a japanese community. They attended Methodist search and the kids went to public school either and her brother. Both groups English and they helped their father with his store and import business in either height played ten, was really popular with her classmates and love swing, dancing suit, definitely Like an all aware, all american girl and according to women in world history, encyclopedia IVO, even sat later that she never really felt discriminated against growing up something that was quite common, unfortunately, for many other japanese Americans of both before and after the war, of course, but in nineteen forty one either graduated from youth delay and she started taking graduate classes. She was thinking of going on to that school.
but in the summer of nineteen, forty one so shortly after her graduation, her sick clay, you Japanese and invited her to visit the home country and care for her. For for a time I didn't have a passport, but that actually wasn't a problem at the time she got a certificate of identification from the state department. She Packer bags with chocolate in coffee and can meet cause. She hated japanese food. She didn't even like to eat rice, though she was preparing for what was clearly going to be a relatively short summer trap? The future is closer than you think, and it all starts. In the palm of your hand, you may the news five g is coming. But what does that really mean how an impact in this new Iheart series. Time tomorrow presented my team above a business join me as well And am I cursed Kara price as we walk you through the true revolution in mobility. That will check.
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colonel mortality rate in the United States is so high and how the twenty twenty presidential candidates plan to improve the lives of every day. Americans. I hope you'll join me for these fascinating conversations on the second season of next question, subscribe and listen every Thursday on the I heard radio app apple pot cast, wherever you get your things chairs. When she left in July to, of course, the? U S and Japan were not yet at war. A crucial point in this scenario and they weren't at war when she applied for a passport home in September either, but as the State Department process, for application. The japanese attacked Pearl Harbor only American born IVO was stuck in enemy territory though she soon found her position got even worse? She could only be that
we need it as a citizen through India, something that cost more than four hundred dollars and was well beyond her means. After that, she tried to. the japanese authorities to detain her as an american national which they refused to do and she was of japanese descent, but she also refused to Now it's her american citizenship and declare herself Japanese, a route that about ten thousand other people like her took pan, and this decision made her immensely suspicious to Japan. authorities, whose suspected that she was an american spy and they would search her? Tom repeatedly until I've finally moved out. So this was her situation in Japan were at home. Japan she's able to return to the. U s: she's unable be an official foreign national and be kept in custody as such is unwilling to become a japanese citizen, She gets no ration card cause she's an enemy alien, though not a great situation to be an. She obviously needs to find work
and she hasn't even have a great command of Japanese. She she's taking language classes but she's, not particularly fluent. Finally, she finds work as a typist at the domain news agency, but too bad time she's, not making very much money. All the food rationing card problem is pretty major because she's suffering from nutritional deficiencies, vitamin deficiencies she's at one point, hospitalized with scurvy and very very and in nineteen forty three. She gets a second job which must have theme
a real blessing at the time that radio Tokyo, also a typing job and radio Tokyo is an interesting place for her to wind up, because there were several allies prisoner of war broadcasters base there, and so she did what she could for her fellow Americans, these these few, w than other Allied P w c, no helping them with food when which it get in helping them some clothes. Just her best for her for her fellow allies. This action alternately earned her the trust of a guy named Charles H. Cousins, who was an australian broadcaster, had been captured in Singapore and forced to broadcast propaganda in Japan and just
side note here: according to the Washington Post, he made a deal with his captors, where he would read. He had read the script of of propaganda messages, but he also convince them to allow him to read Pierre Debian names because he thought it would serve their purposes still. These are the guys we captured, but it would also help the allies help their fans he's no, who is who wasn't dead? They were, they were just in custody and cousins, along with American Pierre W major wallets ends and Filipino Pierre W. Lieutenant Norman Reyes had gotten mission to start a new propaganda show, which was called zero hour, though their plan was actually to subvert the japanese message, basically to make them from a joke, but one that the japanese sensors warrant quite in on and they either with this purpose in mind. Cousins later said quote with dear that I had in mind of making a complete burlesque of the programme. Her voice was
that's what I wanted rough. I hope I can say this without a fence a voice today. Described as a gin, fog voice. It was rough, almost masculine anything femininely seductive voice. It was a comedy, I I needed for this particular job so Take another listen to her about you, rather think until then man, guerrilla rather LU, LU, always good right now,
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have another opportunity to watch. We cry at art, yeah you set out its so called at its, though not a calm situation at all. Our trip to Paris last year was really successful, so we're doing another similar trip this year, but this time to Rome and Florence, its May fourteen through twenty first twenty twenty and like last time, it is with a company called defined destinations who is playing out this whole trip for us yeah and during the week long trip. We are gonna, see some of the great art that we have talked about on the show many times, including Miguel Andrews David. We are going to go to Tuscany, we're gonna visit, say Peters Basilica. We are going to the Sistine Chapel, so it's going to be a fantastic trip, even get the whole list of places that we are going and information about. Looking at defined destinations, dot, com, scroll down to the roman Florence
it was stuffy miss than history glass or come over to our social media. We have posts about it. There too, I so even if you exclude the true subversive intent of zero hour, it's important to note this role was that of a dj. She just pop songs, joking that she was the g eyes number one enemy fell very late, harangue sort of stuff, and I really like her voice by the way have interesting sounding, but the programme was considered successful enough I, the Japanese too, I mean they were picking up, that the whole thing seemed a little bit subversive. It was several enough that they wouldn't let her leave the job, even though she attempted to do that several times by April nineteen, forty five, she converted to Roman Catholicism and married one of her radio Tokyo, co worker, a guy named for leave to cleaner, who is a half japanese, half portuguese, o worker it at the same place and
had portuguese citizen set to, and both of them eventually did leave their jobs that radio Tokyo when it became when their clear pro allies sympathies just became a little bit too controversial for them to keep on working in property that officially and just a few months after their marriage, the war was over and really I've been her husband probably could have to slip to back quietly into their pre war alive. At this point, except that either was contacted by two journalists. The guy named Harry Brun Judge and a guy named Clark Lee and she was over welcoming to them in part because she was happy. She greeted the Americans as as her friends and her fellow countrymen. She saw these guys, as is Americans taught to finally is a good time. She wanted to share her story. She wanted to talk about her war time. Work.
She freely admitted that she was a Tokyo rose, but the reporters didn't he her story as this patriotic tale of diversion we made zero hour and it was really to thwart the japanese methods they published it as a confession. The confession of Tokyo rose. They didnt pay her that either dollars that they promise for the scheme. That was another motor for her talking to them. Clearly, after all this war time deprivation and she had no idea that one thing, sir, you have been manipulated that way, but also that it might get her in some serious trouble and it wasn't long for the FBI was in Tokyo to investigate her and she wound up imprisoned for a year. During that investigation, F B, I listen to recordings of her programme. They also interviewed hundreds of guys who had heard her show salmon japanese documents and ultimately, they decided. There was no case here. She had just been a dj reading bets written by
get your cousins after her release from prison, though she got pregnant when she and her husband began petitioning to return to this It's because they really wanted their child to be born at home brand Who was angry over losing his original scoop. Pierre started to write Her again, Ass did Walter Winchell, a media personality and the two of them. They stood up some outrage here. Veterans groups like theme The legion were quick to idea, either as the gear rose, not just a Tokyo rose. She was basically to them accomplish Every anti american voice they had heard during the war and petition the Justice Department for her prosecution fell, I end Phillips child and that being stillborn, but by that point she was gonna, be returning to the United States, regarding less and even though the earlier investigation had shown that there was nothing to charge her with the prosecution, with look good to the
administration during an election year, especially because President Truman was criticised at this point for being too soft on communism. To soft. On anything on American J Edgar Hoover with favor of prosecuting her, so it seemed like a good move politically too to go after this woman, But while the F B, I had already interviewed hundreds of servicemen and most of them had said and if anything, her approach
with morale, boosting they lighted. It was funny, was nice to hear a familiar voice. The Justice Department put out a press release asking for others to come forward. Anybody who could identify her voice says, as that of when they had heard in the Pacific. They also sent Grundig, and this is really surprising to me since it seems like he would have a lot of interests involved in the story about this point, which he did. They sent him to Japan to find some other witnesses, people who had seen her broadcasting one of his witnesses. He finds end up committing perjury is responsible for it, though clearly he was not a good chance, the choice to send to Japan after all that, finally, in September nineteen forty eight she was indicted on several counts of treason and escort,
by the military back to the United States. So what is the seven years after she left on this still faded trap? She finally is coming home, but to be met with F I ate, and when she arrived right in the trial which started in July, nineteen forty nine went on at the same time as the algae, his case, which I think you guys discussed here. While I was gone then- and I discussed it during the the mccarthy- is an absurd- and I was Dublin and I were just before this you always see the outer his trial, mentioned in the lead up to Mccarthyism. I have never seen the fun mentioned, mean it's not about spies and communism, but clearly in the same vein so either case. Nineteen witnesses from Japan were basically if in style- and they testified to see her broadcast IRAN
clean many of these who testified against her were to say who had renounced their citizenship during the war. Unlike her right in either was defended by weighing Collins, supported by colleagues like cousins and had evidence but she had indeed helped American peered abuse during the war, still she was convicted on one count for supposedly saying quote: orphans of the Pacific. Your the orphans. Now, how will you get home now? ships are sunk. Yet this had aired after an hour victory. So there is the possibility that maybe this was a joke at the false nature of propaganda program. If she sat at that are really said it. but ultimately she was convicted as if she had said it and according to the FBI, she was only
seventh person, convicted of treason and U S, history and its really gets crazier. When you hear what the jury farm and had to say, he later admitted that they wanted to find her not guilty. They deliberated for a very, very long time. They wanted to find her not guilty, but they felt that it countered the judges, instructions and his comments about how this trial had been really expensive and they needed figure something out it and coughed half a million dollars The government, though the jury had come to the conclusion. Alright, we kind of want a fine or not guilty, but we don't want to disobey the judge that Turkey is a bad thing if the jury, thinking that end cited that they would find her guilty on the most minor of the trees and charges. And hoped that that would mean she would get offer time served
He and I had already been in jail for about two years that this point. Instead, though, the judge sentenced her to ten years prison time and a ten thousand dollar fine, which horrified the jury. She ultimately served seven years of that time in West Virginia before she was finally released in nineteen. Fifty six. When she was relief, though the government threatened her, deportation. She successfully argued that this was an impossibility, illegal impossibility because she could not be deported if she was a. U S set a thin would she be convicted of treason if she was not a? U S at a thin, it didn't work out, so they agreed. Ok, you can stay in the. U S but instead they just treated her as a stateless persons, basically forbidding her to travel outside of the. U S, something: made her married life impossible since they'd also banned her husband from entering the country so although she and her husband didn't ever divorce
so weren't ever able to see each other again, which is maybe the status part of this already really sad story. Finally, she moved to Chicago, which is where her father had settled and built up his important business. He was pretty well off by this point. She was ultimately pardon by Gerald Ford in eighteen, thirty, seven, one of the reasons why it took so long for that pardon is. She didn't really have the support of the japanese american community for quite some time. People really thought her as a as it is, it's not looking at the intricacies of her story and how she had really been kind of a model american in an enemy country during wartime, but by the second generation by it by the time he got to the folks who are looking for reparations for a japanese internment, her case took hold of people again and folks wanted some sort of justice.
her according to her Washington Post obeyed, and this is the part that kind of brought tears to my eyes. She was regretful that her pardon came shortly after a father's death in she said that he'd always told her quote. You were like a tiger, you never changed your strike you state American, through and through so something that really say: here, since he and the rest of her family had been forcibly me who, in Arizona internment camp during the war, so they had also suffered here that they were also pay, we are, and that was something she didn't know during her time in Japan, you know and she'll when she would not accept japanese citizenship. She didn't realize that her family had been deported by that point, though, she died in two thousand and six at the age of ninety. After.
many years of running the business successfully, her a bitch very often mentioned things like she likes attending the Chicago Lyric opera. She liked quilting. She kept a pretty low profile life as as one would expect from so many bad experiences with these. With these interviews, her biographer Messiah does said that her case with claw one of the most agreed just miscarry issues of justice and american legal history, and one day I mean they're there. Somebody side points, especially at the at the end here, but one thing that really to me, I realise that the cliffs, the cliffs that we ve actually played our reenactments in their from very shortly for the war and you can see video of her of her doing that munitions in the studio she's gotta make phone, is the guy putting the l p
the turnkey when she came in the fog because of course they are aren't really records of the broadcasting. Here is one record of a zero hour broadcast that most of those FBI files had been destroyed when they decided first around that she'd. There was no against our she couldn't be prosecuted. So these were reenactment. She had done me thinking. This was a totally ok thing to do, Otherwise, why would you reenact here your time as Tokyo rose or or orphaned Anne? She thought I was gonna, be ok and pleasant. Now, clearly, ok, listen, airmail time, though, to Billina I mean. I think this line is israeli, probably for you, but it's very cute email. It's from prisoners are out,
from Quebec and she wrote to pay high, I started listening to both of your Pike S, your mom staff, to you by the way started listening to both your package back in twenty turn on the recommendation from my husband, who is a truck at the time I gave birth to a baby boy last year in September and during the pregnancy. I finish. Listening to all the pike has from monster. I finish history, stuff awhile before or wooden gap. When he's restless from the car, I can turn on either of your podcast any calms down long enough to reach home. She listened to a few other how it works cast sewage love. She enjoys them. It sounds like they dont have quite the same, from the baby fear. During the last year, I listen to you in the car at home and at work Thanks for all the interesting podcast- and I hope will hear you for a long while and yet, though very fun, no sheltered from baby tests for deploying sharing,
the info. I appreciate that I don't think I can use the pod now mom talk and issues mom talking and it doesnt work on her. My talking to her in the car doesn't com. flower driving. So I don't know. Maybe, and conquer, be different voice because it, if you got tired of talking in your voice, did help me creatures pop podcast, and she would just You were talking to her, if only that words Well, I'm glad it does work her somebody. This is another thing you can add coming. Babies, daring bears all sorts of interesting things that are voices do for the world. You know of any other uses, or maybe just have some parenting tips for me, you'd like to Basle on long welcome them to us where it is cheaper gas discovery, dot, com or you can look up on twitter were also on Facebook, and
also have something that somewhat tied to this fascinating and tragic subject that we talked about today. Its did the United States put its own citizens in concentration camps were to thinking over the past. The answer is yes, but of course it does to a lot more detailed, and so you can search for that went on our homepage. W W W that house upwards dot com for more or less and thousands of other topics, does it has a workshop com The future is closer than you think, and it all starts
in the palm of your hand, you may have heard the news five g is coming. in this new. I series time tomorrow, presented by team above a business join me as one option am, I cursed Kara price as we work through the true revolution in mobility that will check The way we interact with the world around us join us, and here just how close we are getting to a more collective future. Time tomorrow is now available on the eye, hot radio up or wherever you listen to podcast. hey listeners. I wanted to tell you about a new podcast from my heart. Radio called the women hosted by we read, it is fascinating and deep dive interview show, where rose talks, to change makers in disruptors and she finds out what really drives them. So she will ask to that what was your first stand and how do you navigate success and failure, and really the cost of fighting for others. These interviews are really personal and their candid and for those who are a little bit crass, but they are always really enlightening. You can
these firebrands and take away lessons that will help you navigate your own life and for your own path? The day you season includes women like Valerie, Plain, the former CIA agents, who is now running for Congress, and lower and pediatrician Doktor Mona Hannah, a teacher who exposed the flint water crisis and came the centre of a swirling swirling amount of problems, and the legendary Buffy Saint Marie Sixty songwriter and activist. I have personal interest in the show, because I adore rose and executive produce it and I think you're really going to enjoy the way that gets into these conversations that feel like two friends talking and they, you are an absolute delight, so subscribed to the women on the Iheart Radio, app on Apple podcast or wherever you get your podcast.