Thursday, September 28, 2006

Woman known as Tokyo Rose dies at 90

You might know that we have a quilt design called Tokyo Rose...Looking through the paper today I saw an article on the "real" Tokyo Rose who just passed away in Chicago..the infamous radio announcer during World War 2....spooky... (by the way, our quilt was inspired by all the beautiful Japanese florals from the shop) ... :)

From the Sydney Morning Herald Thu 28th September:
CHICAGO: Iva Toguri D'Aquino, who was convicted and later pardoned of being World War II propagandist Tokyo Rose, has died of natural causes.
She was 90.
Tokyo Rose was the name given by soldiers to a female radio broadcaster responsible for anti-American transmissions intended to demoralise soldiers fighting in the Pacific theatre.
D'Aquino was the only US citizen identified among the potential suspects.
In 1949, she became the seventh person to be convicted of treason in US history and served six years in prison. But doubts about her possible role as Tokyo Rose later surfaced and she was pardoned by president Gerald Ford in 1977.
D'Aquino was born in Los Angeles in 1916 to Japanese immigrant parents. She had recently graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles, and was visiting relatives in Japan when she became trapped in the country at the beginning of World War II, according to a statement on Tuesday from the Toguri family.
She began working odd jobs to support herself while trying to escape back to the US. This included work on a Japanese propaganda radio show manned by Allied prisoners called Zero Hour, the statement said.
Using the name Orphan Ann, D'Aquino performed comedy skits and introduced newscasts.
On April 19, 1945, she married a Portuguese citizen of Japanese-Portuguese ancestry.
The FBI and the army conducted an extensive investigation to determine whether D'Aquino had committed crimes against the US. Authorities decided that the evidence then available did not merit prosecution, and she was released.
A subsequent public furore convinced the Justice Department that the matter should be re-examined and d'Aquino was arrested in Yokohama in 1945 and tried.
D'Aquino spent the years following her release from prison living quietly in Chicago.
Associated Press