Barbara Takei, the head of the Tulelake Committee, asked me to share this latest update on the effort to save Tulelake (CA), considered one of the most important of the ten sites where US citizens of Japanese ancestry were mass imprisoned during WWII. The Committee hopes to preserve the lessons of yesterday for tomorrow’s generation.
"The Tulelake airport land occupies 2/3rds of the area where more than 24,000
Japanese Americans lived and where over 331 died during the years of
incarceration from 1942 through 1946. In the postwar years, homesteaders
desecrated the concentration camp’s cemetery by bulldozing it, leaving it as a
gouged-out hole in the earth. The burial earth was used to fill in the grid of
ditches within the concentration camp site so the historic site could be used for
The Tulelake committee’s bid to buy the land, which was more than double the price of what it was sold for, was ignored. Instead...
"The City of Tulelake sold the land to the Modoc of Oklahoma, who have been under
investigation for misusing their tribal sovereignty to help usurious payday loan
businesses avoid government regulation. By the time of the sale, City leaders
knew of the FBI investigation, IRS investigation, FTC investigation, Federal
convictions, and over $4 million in penalties paid by the Modoc of Oklahoma.
According to local news reports, City leaders dismissed the Oklahoma Tribe’s
misconduct after assurances by the Oklahoma Tribal leaders.
At the City’s meeting to sell the airport land, a lawyer for the Oklahoma Modoc
tribe, Patrick Bergin, assured City Council members that the Oklahoma Tribe
would not support the local Klamath, Modoc and Yahooskin Tribes’ pending
lawsuit to protect sacred fish and wildlife habitat."
Here is the whole report.
If you would like to help, contact:
Tule Lake Committee v. City of Tulelake, et. al.
For information, contact: Barbara Takei
My Yellow Bowl Project hopes to spur discussion around these questions: Who is an American? What does citizenship mean? How long do you have to be in the US to be considered a bonafide member of this group?