"They may be the only images in existence of American prisoners in Japanese prisoner camps. And they sat unpublished for more than fifty years, apparently ignored by a U.S. government that seemed indifferent to the atrocities the images documented."--Fort Worth WeeklyOn the day the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, the twenty-three marines stationed in North China were at the peak of physical condition. They were young, brave men who were willing to die to defend their country. But on that day, they were forced to surrender to the Japanese and spent the rest of the war-all 1,355 days-as POWs. They didn't know the statistic that stated a marine was 17.5 times more likely to die in a Japanese prison camp than in battle-or that 38 percent of all Americans captured by the Japanese died in labor camps. But they were soon to find out on their own. The Secret Camera is the true story of how one North China marine struggled for survival. From his capture on Pearl Harbor Day, through the bombing of Nagasaki, Corporal Terence S. Kirk spent years as slave labor for the Japanese war machine. Watching himself and his fellow marines wither from strapping young men to mere skeletons, ravaged by starvation, abuse, and disease, he decided to make a difference-by recording the atrocities they all endured. With the help of a Japanese interpreter and a handful of other brave marines, Kirk managed to build a pinhole camera from scraps of cardboard, take a handful of photos, and then hide them away until the end of the war. These are the only photos ever taken inside a Japanese POW camp. A record of courage, faith, and ingenuity, his is a story of heroism, unimaginable adversity, and the will to survive.His photos sat unpublished for more than fifty years, ignored by a U.S. government that seemed indifferent to the atrocities the images documented. But Kirk would not let them languish, and this book is his legacy.
Biographies & Memoirs, Ethnic & National, Japanese,