About JACL and “The Lim Report”

After you view Conscience and the Constitution, learn more here about the actions of the wartime Japanese American Citizens League (JACL), its 1990 self-investigation popularly known as “The Lim Report,” and its 2002 apology to the Heart Mountain resisters.


The Lim Report book cover

What has come to be known as “The Lim Report” was prepared in 1990 by San Francisco attorney and researcher Deborah K. Lim. It was commissioned by the JACL’s Presidential Select Committee on Resolution #7.  Her findings detail the JACL’s role of cooperation and collaboration with government exclusion orders in 1942. It is this report that Frank Emi references in the DVD feature, “The JACL Apologizes.”

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DVD menu screen with Mike Masaoka
DVD menu screen for Masaoka interview

Listen to the DVD to hear Masaoka’s comments on JACL informing, his memos to the government, test cases, the resisters, and his legacy.

  • Read the April 6, 1942 memo to the WRA [4 MB pdf]. The handwritten notes exist on the original document in the National Archives, suggesting that they are written in the hand of the recipient of this memo, or by one of his staff.
  • Read the January 14, 1943 memo to the WRA [1.5 MB pdf] urging segregation of what he called “known agitators and troublemakers.”


Mike Masaoka at 1982 JACL National Convention
Mike Masaoka at 1982 JACL National Convention

Mike Masaoka’s closing peoration at the 1982 JACL National Convention in Los Angeles was first transcibed by editor Dwight Chuman and published on Feb. 17, 1983 in the Rafu Shimpo newspaper.


Floyd Mori at JACL apology ceremony
Floyd Mori at JACL apology ceremony

Conscience and the Constitution closes with the tag, “In July 2000, the national Japanese American Citizens League voted to apologize for its suppression of wartime resistance. Several JACL old-timers walked out in protest.”

Two years later, on Saturday, May 11, 2002, about 300 people filled the gym at the San Francisco Japanese American Community and Cultural Center for the “Nisei Resisters of Conscience of World War II Recognition and Reconciliation Ceremony.”

What happened there is told in the DVD featurettte, “The JACL Apologizes.”

  • Learn more about the event, read the full speeches presented by Floyd Mori, Frank Emi, and Yosh Kuromiya, and see the archived news coverage.

The history and literature of Japanese American resistance to wartime incarceration