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TESTIMONY:   Tule Lake Unit, World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument

comments by Rudy Hiley submitted to Lava Beds National Monument February 2017
(Comments due February 28, 2017. HERE for letter from Macy's Flying Service to the community)

“If you see something, say something”.  In the Tulelake, California area we have seen something!  We have made the painful observation that sometimes the greater evil arises from loving the wrong thing so much that the innocent are sacrificed to and for it.  We have also come to know that given enough time the protector can all too easily become the oppressor.  That abuse is manifested when aspects of the very same government which was instituted to secure the rights of the individual becomes indifferent towards the consent of the governed.

Like the majority of local residents I believe that the circumstances under which the internment of Japanese Americans took place needs to be carefully examined and their experience should be memorialized.  Such however would seem to be already more than adequately provided for under what is considered as option A of the Tulelake Unit General Management Plan.

Local opposition has naturally risen over what is known as the plan’s Options B and C wherein there appears to be an overt attempt by at least some of those directly affected by internment and their decedents (acting as at least part of the Tule Lake Committee et al.) to expand the designated 35 acre site to encompass and decommission the Tulelake Airport.  It is astonishingly obvious that our local agricultural economy could not survive without the agricultural services provided by the airport based agricultural support business known as Macy’s Flying Service.

Even more unattractive is Option C, which in addition to an unwanted, unprovoked and legally aggressive incursion against the airport would seek to add in the vicinity of 1,000 additional acres more of privately held land to the concerned site (depending upon willingness of private sellers of course). 

These appalling issues and more have educated us to the fact that we have been acting under the mistaken belief that we would always enjoy the protection and guarantees as afforded by our great nation.  Now we find ourselves to be unprotected, acted upon with prejudice and made vulnerable, all in media silence.  With that, there are some associated issues and concerns which need to be carefully examined and considered:

1.     The current residents who live and pursue liberty and happiness in proximity to the site of the Tule Lake Segregation Camp (or the same known by any other name) were not a party to the events which led to WWII nor in any way contributed to decisions or conclusions which resulted in the wartime internment or segregation of Japanese Americans.  Thus, said current residents cannot and should not in any way shape or form be called upon to make any manner of recompense to the alleged affected interned citizens or their decedents.  The attempted assignment of this false and disproportionate liability to our local citizenry is by and of itself reprehensible.

2.     Though denied, some Park Service employees and officials (such as the current superintendent of the Lava Beds National Monument) have openly supported the incursion into and the decommissioning and closing of the Tulelake Airport for the purpose of expanding and adding to the existing 35 acre historic parcel.  Such is verified by recorded video of meetings with the Tule Lake Committee in both San Jose and Sacramento, California.   At an absolute minimum this deceptive action should call into question the Oath taken by any number of the concerned parties at the time that they became employees, representatives, servants and protectors of the constitution rights of citizens of the United States. The oath is as follows:  I, [name], do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.”


3.    Modoc County California Ordinance Code 8.28.010 would seem by its intent to protect invaluable operations such and Macy’s Flying Service and the agricultural interests which they provide for from disgruntled or sensitive neighbors in as much as the following dictates:  It is the declared policy of Modoc County that it is in the public interest to conserve and protect agricultural land and to encourage agricultural operations within the county. This chapter is adopted in recognition of agriculture's right to farm. Its purposes are:

A.  To implement the goals and policies of the Modoc County General Plan;

B.  To reduce the loss to the county of its agricultural resources by limiting the circumstances under which agricultural operations may be considered a nuisance. Where nonagricultural land uses extend into agricultural areas or exist side by side, agricultural operations may become the subjects of nuisance complaints and may be forced to cease or curtail operations. Such actions discourage investments in farm improvements to the detriment of adjacent agricultural use and the economic viability of the county's agricultural industry as a whole. This section is not to be construed as in any way modifying or abridging state law relative to nuisances, but is to be utilized in the interpretation and enforcement of the provisions of this code and other county regulations.

C.  To promote a good neighbor policy between agriculturalists and residents by advising purchasers and users of property adjacent to or near agricultural operations of the right to farm and the inherent potential problems or inconveniences that accompany living side by side with agriculture, so that users and purchasers will be prepared to accept such problems as the natural result of living in or near rural areas.



California Agricultural Protection Act


         § 3482.5. Agricultural activity not a nuisance; exceptions; construction with other laws

(a) (1) No agricultural activity, operation, or facility, or appurtenances thereof, conducted or maintained for commercial purposes, and in a manner consistent with proper and accepted customs and standards, as established and followed by similar agricultural operations in the same locality, shall be or become a nuisance, private or public, due to any changed condition in or about the locality, after it has been in operation for more than three years if it was not a nuisance at the time it began.”

Regardless of the potential damage to local agriculture, the associated economy, our nation, its true sustainable future and security, the Tule Lake Committee et al, filed a Writ of Mandamus against local entities and interests. A writ which was admittedly designed to do far more than prevent the construction of a federally mandated security fence intended to keep human and animal etc. traffic from conflicting with aircraft and associated traffic.  Why?  Because of esthetic and emotional concerns.  The nusiances about which they seem to be consternated by include the inability to freely enter and walk about the ariport grounds and the interruption of their veiw of part of the past “camp site” AKA as an interrupted viewshed.

4.     An award winning paper by Andrea Ikeda (UC Berkley student) appears on the Tule Lake Committee website which is titled: Cowboys, Indians and Aliens: White Supremacy in the Klamath Basin, 1826-1946.  One would hope that such a prejudicial and anti-White indictment would be heartily denounced by the Tule Lake Committee.  For if they wish to be part of the community it is best not to condone inflammatory and miscreant proclamations against those who are trying to make their lives and livings here!  It is sadly common though for some to attempt to demean the worth and integrity of a group or race for purposes of making them simply appear to be persona non grata. That can have the sometimes intended effect of making it less morally and ethically troubling when attempting to take, liberate or confiscate property etc. from a particular individual, entity or group.

It is improbable in any event that anyone living in this vicinity now was ever been involved in the Indian wars, owned slaves, abused Oriental labor etc.  Besides, a bit more balanced study of history might cause a certain reality to present itself; that it is hard to find any useful square inch of the earth that hasn’t been fought for and over many times.  One might even discover that war and incursion etc. etc. etc. has never been a human defect restricted only to those of European ancestry.  In contrast many have decided that theirs is the only worthy and deserving race and/or have planned to dominate the entire world or at least their region of it.  Killing, oppression, enslaving etc. by no means excluded.

In Andrea’s paper you will unfortunately find this and much more; “I turned to the emerging field of settler colonial studies to provide a theoretical framework that would allow me to put the histories of Native Americans and Japanese/Americans in conversation with each other to provide a more complete account of the ways in which the Klamath Basin has been—and continues to be—shaped by ongoing and interlocking processes that uphold white supremacy.” Shameful!  It is bigotry to attempt to paint an entire race with such a demeaning broad brush. It makes one wonder if this is part of the devastating ongoing rights and property incursive anti-capitalist process known as Decolonization?  Especially with statement such as this: “While not uncomplicated, placing Asian American and Native histories in conversation might create the conditions of possibility of using settler colonialism against itself, where social justice-oriented Asian Americans might conceptualize liberation in ways that are accountable to Native aims for decolonization.”  So, one would naturally have to ask who would benefit from plans like this and who’s rights, futures and holdings have been targeted in the process?  Is their ultimate goal an overthrow or a coup of one treasonous form or another?  The answers may begin to present themselves with an honest and in depth study of Decolonization.


5.     There are serious questions as to whether or not the Tule Lake Committee et al. should be allowed a legitimate legal standing.  Though they are a Non-Profit Public Benefit Corporation (supposedly with public interest in mind) the goal of their actions against the airport et al. would seem to be largely for their own benefit. That is unless somehow it is in public interest that they seek to decimate an agricultural flying service which the surrounding communities critically depend upon, not to mention the lives, incomes and futures of all who are associated?  Why?  Because internees were subjected to “turmoil and strife” some seventy years ago; which pales enormously by comparison to the treatment suffered by U.S. citizens and others who were involuntary WWII guests of the Axis Powers.

6.     There are also serious questions also about the legal standing of those who were conceived during or after the interment of parents, grandparents etc. It is mathematically surmised that the chances of arriving at the exact and nearly impossible genetic lottery combination which causes each unique individual to come to be is about one in four trillion.  It is then scientifically unassailable that without the interment, those who were conceived during or after such could not have even come to exist.  The once in forever genetic individual uniqueness which we all represent is the result of a succession of thousands upon thousands of years of genetic sweepstakes.  Change even one aspect of history or timing which affects conditions, associations, place etc. (ancestral good or bad fortune included) and someone else who is entirely different from us would have taken our place, if born at all.  Ironically, the offsprings of the internment owe (at least in part) their very being to the concerned WWII displacement. Therefore in seeking that the airport etc. to cease and desist are they are in actuality suggesting that they themselves cease to exist?  Are they willing to surrender financial compensation equal to the value which they place on their own lives and then just move on?

7.     It is unknown how wide spread the knowledge is of the Committee’s (et al.) alleged connection with the Committee for American Islamic Relations.  Yet CAIR is suspected as having some form of association with a known terrorist group.  I am a bit surprised that with even a remote chance of this being true that it has not triggered serious investigation.  Especially since the Committee et al. seems to be involved in one way or another with an attempted incursion into private property which is legally held within and by citizens of the United States of America. It would be our hope that the matter has been honorably looked into and the Committee et al. has been exonerated.


It was famously said (authorship is disputed), “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing”.  Still, just because we see something and say something history tells us that it doesn’t always mean that anyone will listen.

During WWII despite emphatic intelligence reports to the contrary, Winston Churchill and FDR chose not to listen to good and credible intelligence.  Instead they embraced reports from top British and US intel sources who unfortunately carried a certain provably devastating political infection. As a result England and the USA threw invaluable Allied support in Yugoslavia over to Josip Broz Tito and his Partisans, while abandoning their faithful ally Draza Mihailovich.  It was only through unsanctioned cooperation between Mihailovich, his forces, countrymen and daring rouge OSS operatives that over 500 downed Allied airmen (most of which were Americans) were rescued from under the noses of Nazi forces. After the war committed communist Tito happily strengthened the Soviet Block by ceding his country over to Stalinist Russian control.  Some say the massive turbulence and bloodshed in that region which followed was at least partially caused or exacerbated by that fractious Allied betrayal.

Tragically, even over the objection of rescued airmen the United States of America has never conspicuously admitted to or memorialized that grievous error which ultimately cost Mihailovich and many of his followers their lives, at the hands of Tito.

It seems that not many nations except the USA are likely to make apologies of any sort to nations, states, people, creatures etc.  Yet it goes without saying that no nation is perfect.  So one wonders if in this day of extreme sensitivity towards injustice if that greater evil isn’t again spawning the need to make future apologies and amends to the victims of unjust things: Things which are unfolding here and now in the Tulelake aspect of Klamath Basin.

Some have made the glaring observation that sometimes a plea for justice can turn out to be the pursuit of the power necessary to oppress others.  Also a claim of sacredness can turn out to be a means by which a possession demand is made upon that which already belongs to someone else.

With all things considered the majority of our community is still more than happy to cooperate with the implementation of Option A, and that option alone.  

Respectfully submitted,

Rudy Hiley



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