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Service
Millitary Intelligence and Translation

Like the Nisei who fought with the 100th/442nd in Europe, some 5,000 Japanese-Americans became Military Intelligence Service (MIS) language specialists. About 3,700 men were serving in combat zones in the Pacific and in Asia by August 1945.






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Military Intelligence Service language specialists served as translators to intelligence headquarters in Hawaii, India, and Australia, and with combat units in the field. On-the-spot translations of captured documents, prisoner interrogations, and persuasion of Japanese soldiers and civilians to surrender were among the duties performed by Japanese American intelligence service troops.




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MIS language specialists took part in every major Pacific campaign, seeing combat in New Guinea, the Marianas, the Aleutians, the Philippines, and on Iwo Jima and Okinawa. Their major accomplishments included translating captured communications call signs and code names for enemy naval and air units and bases. They also translated Japanese battle plans for the defense of the Philippines.

Francis F.: Importance of Kibeis (oral history transcript)


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Smithsonian - National Museum of American History - Behring Center
FLASH 5 RICH MEDIA VERSION