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Records: Folk Legend Peter Seeger Hounded by FBI for Years Over Alleged Communist ties

Pete Seeger, via Wikipedia.

Pete Seeger, via Wikipedia.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Singer-songwriter Peter Seeger was hounded by the FBI from the 1940s to the early 1970 because of his political views and his opposition to deporting Japanese Americans after World War II, according to bureau documents obtained by Mother Jones. 

The nearly 1,800-page file shows that the FBI began pursuing Seeger when he was an Army private and wrote a letter protesting a proposal to deport Japanese Americans following the end of World War II.

The folk legend also joined the Communist Party in the 1940s, which later acknowledged. The FBI continued to try to tie him to the Communist movement.

Here is his letter of protest to the California chapter of the American Legion:

Dear Sirs –

I felt shocked, outraged, and disgusted to read that the California American Legion voted to 1) deport all Japanese after the war, citizen or not, 2) Bar all Japanese descendants from citizenship!!

We, who may have to give our lives in this great struggle—we’re fighting precisely to free the world of such Hitlerism, such narrow jingoism.

If you deport Japanese, why not Germans, Italians, Rumanians, Hungarians, and Bulgarians?

If you bar from citizenship descendants of Japanese, why not descendants of English? After all, we once fought with them too.

America is great and strong as she is because we have so far been a haven to all oppressed.

I felt sick at heart to read of this matter.

Yours truly,

Pvt. Peter Seeger

I am writing also to the Los Angeles Times.


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