''I didn't think I was doing anything disloyal to America.''—Iva Toguri D’Aquino, 1946
“Tokyo Rose” was the generic name given to a dozen English-speaking women who made and broadcasted anti-American propaganda on behalf of the Empire of Japan. “Tokyo Rose” is now synonymous with Iva Toguri D’Aquino, a first-generation American of Japanese descent born in Los Angeles on July 4, 1916.
Iva was visiting Japan when war broke out in 1941. Unable to return to America, she started working at Radio Tokyo waging psychological warfare designed to lower the morale of U.S. troops in the region.
After the war, Iva made her way back to California where she was promptly arrested and charged with treason. She was convicted, fined $10,000 and sentenced to ten years in prison for betraying her country.
Twenty-eight years later, Iva was pardoned by President Gerald Ford.
She died in 2006 at the age of 90 in a Chicago hospital.