Guam's World War II Survivors Await Justice

The United States made a promise to pay war reparations to Guam's World War II survivors, yet 66 years after the war ended these survivors are still waiting for Congress to pass war reparations legislation.

More than 66 years after they endured some of the worst wartime atrocities imaginable, survivors of the Japanese occupation of Guam during World War II still await justice. There were more than 22,000 people who lived through the war on Guam. Of that group, less than 1,000 are alive today, and more continue to die.

In a peace treaty with Japan, the United States promised to pay all war claims against Japan for atrocities suffered by U.S. citizens and nationals during World War II. This included the people of Guam. However, war reparations have yet to be justly awarded to Guam?s war survivors. Every one of Guam?s delegates to U.S. Congress has introduced legislation for war reparations, but still they have not been paid.

We, the undersigned, urge Congress to finally resolve this issue. On May 27, 2010, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 5136, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2011, which included an amendment that added to the bill the text of H.R. 44 ? The Guam World War II Loyalty Recognition Act, which would finally pay reparations to Guam?s war survivors. We ask the members of Congress to ensure that the text of H.R. 44 remain in the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2011 when it is voted on by the Senate, and that the Senate pass the bill. Congress has the obligation to finally close this horrific chapter in Guam?s history with justice.