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15 Jun, 2023 12:21

West should target Russians like US treated Japanese in WW2 - Czech President

“Scrutiny” in the West is “the cost of war,” Petr Pavel said
West should target Russians like US treated Japanese in WW2 - Czech President

Russians living in the West should be closely monitored by security services, Czech President Petr Pavel has argued. He mentioned the treatment of ethnic Japanese by the US during World War II as an example of wartime security measures.

Pavel made his case in an interview with the US government-funded outlet Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty on Thursday.

“When there is an ongoing war, the security measures related to Russian nationals should be stricter than in normal times,” he said. “All Russians living in Western countries should be monitored much more than in the past.”

The Czech leader drew a comparison to the treatment of Japanese Americans during World War II, which he described as a “strict monitoring regime” and “scrutiny of security services.”

“That’s simply the cost of war,” Pavel declared.

As tensions between the US and Imperial Japan grew, there was a growing suspicion of disloyalty in American society directed against ethnic Japanese. The mistrust was fueled by historic anti-Asian sentiment on the West Coast.

Two months after the December 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor, President Franklin Roosevelt issued an executive order, under which at least 125,000 such people, most of them US nationals, were forced to live in dozens of detention facilities around the country. The policy remained in place until 1946.

President Jimmy Carter authorized a commission to review the controversial decision and its effect on national security and advise on how to redress its victims. Its report, which was released in 1983, said the order was not justified by military necessity and rooted in racial prejudices and war hysteria.

“A grave injustice was done to Americans and resident aliens of Japanese ancestry who, without individual review or any probative evidence against them, were excluded, removed and detained by the United States during World War II,” the document said.

The conclusions were disputed by some media. A 1983 Washington Post article stated that a “significant number” of Japanese spies were living on the West Coast, giving Roosevelt a reason to act the way he did.

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