TREASON: The Meatball

In the bleak prisoner-of-war camp at Oeyama, he was vengefully nicknamed "The Meatball." He was a bespectacled, bandy-legged little man who took a savage delight in mistreating captured G.I.s. Under "The Meatball's" regime, U.S. prisoners were, often beaten, ducked in the camp cesspool, forced to work even when sick. One was clubbed into temporary insanity.

One day after war's end, a startled ex-inmate of Oeyama spotted his old enemy walking out of a Sears, Roebuck store in Los Angeles. He called the FBI, who rounded up Tomaya Kawakita, 26, a California-born Nisei back in the U.S. to study at the...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!