2015 / 70 years after the Battle of Okinawa; lecture to be held in Gardena, June 20

Battle of Okinawa Lecture

To commemorate the 70th anniversary of World War II’s Battle of Okinawa, the Okinawa Association of America (OAA) will host a special event on Saturday, June 20, 5:30 PM, at the OAA Center in Gardena.

Masahide Ota – former governor of Okinawa Prefecture and founder of the Okinawa Peace Research Institute – will present a lecture via Skype video (schedule permitting).

As a high school student, Mr. Ota and his classmates were forced to become child soldiers for the Imperial Japanese Army. The Cornerstone of Peace monument in Itoman City was constructed under Mr. Ota’s governorship, honoring of the 200,000+ soldiers and civilians who lost their lives during the devastating “Typhoon of Steel.”

Ayano Ginoza – visiting scholar at the UCLA Center for the Study of Women – will present a short lecture and moderate a discussion with OAA members who were in Okinawa at the time of the war.

Songs that are relevant to the war and post-war experiences of Okinawans will be sung and played on sanshin, a traditional 3-stringed instrument.

For those who cannot attend this event or want to learn more about the Battle of Okinawa, a temporary display has been set up in the OAA Kamiya Library to highlight the organization’s collection of books and videos on the topic.

NOTE: Only paid OAA members can check-out materials from the library.

Due to limited space and parking, RSVP is required for this event. Please contact the OAA Culture Committee chairperson at josephkamiya@gmail.com or 310-714-8830 to reserve your seat.

This is a free event with a suggested donation of $5. The OAA Center is located at 16500 South Western Avenue, Gardena 90247 (event will be held in the Yamauchi Building).