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Santa Cruz County History - Executive Order 9066 and the Residents of Santa Cruz County
Santa Cruz Sentinel-News, Evening Edition. Feb. 6, 1942. p. 1
NEW ALIEN RULES SEEN
Alien re-registration in Santa Cruz slated to close Saturday, has been extended through Monday of next week, Postmaster Fred T. Hale revealed Friday, simultaneously with announcement from Washington of new proposed steps to cope with the Japanese alien-citizen problem on the west coast.
Justice department sources disclosed they are weighing the possibility of asking congress for legislation that would permit "protective custody" arrest of any citizen for the duration of the war.
They emphasized that they are reluctant to seek such a law and have made no final decisions, but may find it advisable to make such a request.
Though the bill would be aimed solely at the dual citizenship problem of west coast Japanese, it would permit the seizure of any citizen whose presence in defense areas was considered dangerous to the national security.
The powers of the justice department now restrict them to ordering the evacuation of enemy aliens from prohibited areas. Numerous Japanese who were born in this country and therefore are American citizens are reported, however, to be considered more dangerous than many of the alien Japanese.
It was disclosed also that the transfer of full responsibility for the alien enemy problem on the Pacific to the war department was under consideration. This would permit the declaration of martial law in California and other states so that the army could bodily evacuate undesired persons from any area.
A third proposal being given serious consideration, the sources said, was the ?licensing? of all persons, including citizens, in huge restricted areas in the vicinity of defense establishments and industrial plants.
Under that proposal, all persons including citizens, would be required to obtain passes to move about in restricted areas. Huge zones would be designated as restricted areas and permits would be refused citizens and aliens considered "dangerous to the national security."
Restrictions on the unlicensed thus would force them to move to unrestricted areas.
Meanwhile in Los Angeles Mayor Fletcher Bowron Friday called for internment of the entire Japanese population of the Los Angeles area on land "several hundred miles from the coast."
Bowron deplored the delay on the part of the federal government in adopting a general policy to protect southern California aircraft, shipbuilding and other war industries from possible sabotage.
"This area holds the largest concentration of Japanese population in the United States," he said. "Within the city limits of Los Angeles alone we have well over one fourth of the California Japanese and approximately one-fifth of all the Japanese residents of America. We are, naturally, most concerned."
Bowron proposed that the federal government acquire land several hundred miles inland and transfer the Japanese population there to raise food and other products.
Possibility of escheating to the state all property in California illegally held by Japanese has been ordered investigated by Attorney General Earl Warren.
Warren, in a letter to District Attorney John F. Dockweiler of Los Angeles county, ordered preparation of maps showing all lands held by Japanese in the county.
It has been frequently charged that Japanese aliens -- barred from holding property in California -- have gained control of land by registering it in the names of their American born children.
Dockweiler said that where lands are found to be held illegally by alien Japanese, civil proceedings will be instituted under the Alien Land Act.
In a series of swooping raids around Mare Island navy yard, FBI agents and San Francisco authorities last night and today arrested nine alien Japanese and seized a set of U.S. navy signal flags, firearms, and other contraband.
Twenty persons, including one Italian, were taken into custody but all except the Japanese were released after questioning determined they were U.S. citizens.
Copyrighted by the Santa Cruz Sentinel-News, Evening Edition. Reproduced by permission.