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In recent years, we’ve discovered several incarceration sites within the Hawaiian Islands. But this is a little-known story of about 1,500 Japanese Americans who were evicted from their homes, and their struggle for redress 40 years later.

Immediately following the bombing of Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941, about 1,500 Americans of Japanese ancestry were evicted from their homes by the U.S. government throughout the Territory of Hawai‘i, but not incarcerated or sent to detention facilities. Nearly 40 years later the Japanese American Citizens League helped them seek justice. With panelist William Kaneko, a redress advocate associated with the Honolulu JACL.


RYAN KAWAMOTO, the writer, director, co-executive producer of “Removed by Force,” is a television and film director based in Honolulu, Hawai‘i, represented by Kinetic Productions. His previous documentary, “Voices Behind Barbed Wire: Stories of Hawaiʻi,” presented by the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawaiʻi was an official selection of the Hawaiʻi International Film Festival (2018), aired on PBS Hawaiʻi, and was awarded a 2020 Preservation Honor Award by the Historic Hawaiʻi Foundation.

Kawamoto also co-produced the feature film, “Growing Up Local,” which recently completed a theatrical run in Hawaiʻi. Ryan wrote and directed other documentaries including, “Gannenmono: Hawaiʻi’s First Japanese Immigrants.” And “Honouliuli: Hawaiʻi’s Hidden Internment Camp.” In 2012, he wrote and directed the documentary, "The Untold Story: Internment of Japanese Americans in Hawai‘i.” 

Ryan Kawamoto is a Yonsei (fourth generation) Japanese American born, raised, and residing in Hawai‘i. 


WILLIAM M. KANEKO is an accomplished lawyer and civil rights advocate spanning nearly three decades. Kaneko is a partner at Dentons US LLP where he specializes in administrative law and public policy. He has been recognized by Best Lawyers in America every year since 2009, and named Hawaii Lawyer of the Year in government relations in 2014, 2017, 2021 and 2024. Kaneko is recipient of the U.S. Attorney General's Award for Public Service for his work with the Department of Justice. He has also been recognized by the Hawaii State Legislature, National Asian Pacific American Bar Association, American Civil Liberties Union of Hawaii, and the Japanese American Citizens League for advancing civil rights and social justice. Kaneko received his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Puget Sound, a Juris Doctor degree from the Catholic University of America, and an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from the University of Puget Sound.

CAROLE HAYASHINO has worked in the nonprofit sector, higher education, and state government. She served as director of Protocol and Community Relations for Hawai’i Governor David Y. Ige. As former president and executive director at the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai‘i, Carole was involved in the preservation of the Honouliuli Internment Camp as a national historic site. During the 1980s, she served as redress coordinator and public information officer to the JACL National Committee for Redress. Carole was vice president of University Advancement at California State University, Sacramento, associate vice president of Development and a lecturer in Asian American Studies at San Francisco State University.

  • Year
  • Runtime
    60 minutes
  • Director
    Ryan Kawamoto