One Fifth of Chinese Americans Fight Fascism in World War II

About 20,000 Chinese Americans, one fifth of 100,000 Americans with Chinese descant during World War II, fought and served on all fronts in the struggle against Fascism, according to a statement released on Memorial Day by the Organization of Chinese Americans (OCA).

"As many observe the Memorial Day weekend, I ask every American to pause a moment to think about the Chinese Americans who served in all military branches to protect our country," said OCA National President George M. Ong in the statement.

Ong praised OCA, a national nonprofit, nonpartisan Asian Pacific American civil rights and education group, in its efforts to help bring about a documentary film on the heroic deeds of Chinese Americans fighting in the anti-Fascist War.

The film, entitled "We Served With Pride: The Chinese American Experience in World War II," is currently being shown on several Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) stations throughout the United States, and it will be aired on every PBS station nationwide soon.

"I was proud and deeply touched when October 26, 1999 was announced as the 'National Day for Chinese American Veterans of World War II,' when some of the veterans in the film and their families were greeted by President Clinton in the Oval Room of the White House," Ong said.

On the same day, the Chinese American veterans and their relatives also attended a solemn and memorable ceremony at the Women's Memorial At Arlington Cemetery, and the event was culminated by the premiere screening of the documentary at the Smithsonian in the evening.

"With those historic events occurring, we Chinese Americans were no longer silent, ignored, or forgotten. Chinese American stories and history, which can be appreciated by everybody, finally received the recognition that they have always deserved," Ong said.

He pointed out that "ignorance and deep-rooted racism" have often prevented mainstream America from recognizing the contributions the Chinese Americans have made to the nation.

"We must encourage our friends and neighbors to get beyond the initial barriers and understand the important roles that Chinese Americans have played in the military during periods of conflict," he added.

People's Daily Online ---