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Cultures of CommemorationThe Politics of War, Memory, and History in the Mariana Islands$
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Keith L. Camacho

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780824835460

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824835460.001.0001

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On the Margins of Memory and History

On the Margins of Memory and History

(p.136) Chapter 6 On the Margins of Memory and History
Cultures of Commemoration

Keith L. Camacho

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter explores the issue of collaboration in the Mariana Islands by focusing on the roles of those who could be understood as indigenous “collaborators” with the Japanese empire during World War II: Chamorro interpreters, police, and women of war (i famalaoan guerra siha). It first provides an overview of the Japanese police system in the Northern Marianas before turning to the Chamorro police and interpreters in wartime Guam, with particular emphasis on their relationships with the “Americanized” Chamorros. It then considers the establishment of “comfort stations,” or brothels for Japanese military personnel, along with the conscription of women of war as sex slaves of the Japanese. It also examines the degree to which collaboration generated wartime violence and betrayal, as well as postwar amnesia and malaise. It argues that collaboration largely explains why the stories of i famalaoan guerra siha have remained marginalized in histories of war and why they have not actively participated in war commemorations.

Keywords:   collaboration, Mariana Islands, World War II, indigenous collaborators, war women, Japanese police, Chamorros, comfort stations, postwar amnesia, commemoration

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