Asian Americans on War and Peace (2002)

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Editor(s): Russell C. Leong and Don T. Nakanishi

Paperback - $16.95
ISBN-10: 0-934052-36-0
ISBN-13: 978-0934052368

Product Details: 228 pgs, 8 x 8.9 in

Categories: Activism; Asian American; Asian American Studies; Civil Rights; History; Narratives; Internment; War and Peace Issues



Asian Americans on War and Peace is the first book to respond to the events of September 11, 2001 from Asian American perspectives, from the vantage point of those whose lives and communities have been forged by both war and peace. Together, scholars, writers, activists and legal scholars reveal how Asians in America view the future of the planet in relation to the events of this last year and this last century, both in America and in the Middle East. We join others who continue to question both the ongoing crisis of the American presence in the Middle East, and the concurrent crisi of civil liberties and democracy in the United States.

Includes essays by Helen Zia, Jessica Hagedorn, Vijay Prashad, Amitava Kumar, Russell C. Leong, Jerry Kang, Frank Chin, Moustafa Bayoumi, Stephen Lee, Janice Mirikitani, Arif Dirlik, Grace Lee Boggs, and many others.


We have always written in this moment in the wake of war-torn worlds, among ashes of smoking cities, under white banners of peace. Refugees from our history, we reach back to places we once called home. Cavite. Nagasaki. Hiroshima. Manzanar. Poston. Heart Mountain. Manila. Seoul. Saigon. Bach Mai. Haiphong. Phnom Penh. Basra. Baghdad. New York. Karachi. Kabul. Kandahar. Ramallah. Jenin. Jerusalem.
Twenty-four scholars, writers, activist, and legal scholars have written for this collection. This volume foregrounds the geopolitical crisis of the continuing violence in Afghanistan and the Middle East, and also provides vital documentation of the Asian American, South Asian, and Islamic presence in America in the days before, and following, 9/11.
Their words are in effect, words written in the midst of crisis. Their words are alternatives to the rhetoric uttered by presidents and generals, politicians and pundits living in the East and in the West. Together, their voices reveal how Asians Asian Americans, South Asians, Arabs, and others view the future of the planet in relation to the events of both yesterday and today.
These essays were written immediately after the World Trade Center attack and during the U.S bombing of Afghanistan. Although the post-Taliban interim government has now emerged, the U.S., Britain, France, Russia, and China continue their "anti-terrorist" activities, while India and Pakistan remain on uneasy terms. President Bush has declared a new alignment of an "axis of evil" involving Iran, Iraq, and North Korea. Domestically, anti-terrorism and surveillance laws (USA Patriot Act) are on the books, and an untold number of individuals remain detained by the FBI and the INS. The crisis of war and peace continues in the Middle East, as Israelis and Palestinians wage violence upon each other.

(From the "Introduction" by Russell C. Leong and Don T. Nakanishi)

Table of Contents

Introduction: War and Peace: When Past and Future Became the Now by Russell C. Leong and Don T. Nakanishi

I. Worlds of Crisis

  • Oh, Say, Can You See? Post September 11
  • Notes From A New York Diary
  • Existing At The Center, Watching From The Edges
  • War Against The Planet
  • Nothing To Write Home About
  • Today: September 11, 2001

II. Civil Liberties and Internment

  • Thinking Through Internment: 12/7 And 9/11
  • The Loaded Weapon
  • Pearl Harbor Revisited
  • How Does It Feel To Be A Problem?
  • What Does Danger Look Like?
  • When Mothers Talk
  • Why Children Did Not Knock At My Door On Halloween This Year


  • Colonialism, Globalization and Culture: Reflections On September 11th Arif Dirlik
  • Coming Full Circle: North American Labor History Conference Wayne State University, October 19, 2001 Grace Lee Boggs
  • Terrorism as a Way Of Life Vinay Lal
  • Civilization and Dissent David Palumbo-Liu


  • Why Does A Pediatrician Worry About Nuclear Weapons?
  • The Hip-Hop Generation Can Call For Peace
  • A Merciful End: A Call To Humanity
  • Stop The Bombing, Stop The War
  • Asian Americans And The Peace Imperative
  • A Chronology Of The "War On Terror" And Domestic Hate Crimes