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Rising Sun*
11-02-2008, 05:44 AM
Japan not WWII aggressor, says air force chief
Posted Sat Nov 1, 2008 12:25am AEDT

Japan's air force chief has released an essay saying that the nation was not the aggressor in World War II, in comments likely to anger Asian neighbours.

The essay was authored by General Toshio Tamogami, chief of staff of Japan's Air Self-Defence Force, and won the top award in an inaugural contest aimed at describing "true views of modern history."

"Even now, there are many people who think that our country's 'aggression' caused unbearable suffering to the countries of Asia during the Greater East Asia War," said the English-language version of the essay.

"But we need to realise that many Asian countries take a positive view of the Greater East Asia War," it said.

"In Thailand, Burma, India, Singapore, and Indonesia, the Japan that fought the Greater East Asia War is held in high esteem," it said.

"It is certainly a false accusation to say that our country was an aggressor nation."

The Greater East Asia War was a term used by Japan to describe the conflict in the Asia-Pacific theatre, emphasising that it involved Asian nations seeking independence from the Western powers.

The essay, entitled "Was Japan an Aggressor Nation?," was posted on the website of a Japanese hotel chain which organised the contest.

Mr Tamogami argued that Japan was drawn into World War II by then US president Franklin D Roosevelt, whom he said was being manipulated by the Comintern.

Mr Tamogami also rejected the verdicts of an Allied tribunal which convicted Japanese wartime leaders as war criminals after Tokyo's defeat in 1945.

The thesis also runs counter to a 1995 statement issued by then prime minister Tomiichi Murayama and endorsed by his successors, which apologised for Japan's past aggression and colonial rule in Asia.

The statement acknowledged that Japan, through its colonial rule and aggression, "caused tremendous damage and suffering to the people of many countries, particularly to those of Asian nations."

But there has been a persistent nationalistic argument in Japan that the Murayama statement was part of the country's "masochism" aimed at accommodating Asian neighbours.

Japan renounced the right to wage war after World War II and calls its de facto military the Self-Defence Forces.http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2008/11/01/2407454.htm


If Japan wasn't the aggressor in WWII, I'd hate to see what would have happened if it was. :rolleyes:

.

tom!
11-02-2008, 06:35 AM
That´s what happens if an education system doesn´t allow an uninfluenced view on important parts of national history.

Major Walter Schmidt
11-02-2008, 06:45 AM
This is not a very good political move.
For one, the Air-Self Defence Force is very much the biggest US ally of that reigion (maybe except for Korea) and you do stuff for/with the US and other Asian Nations all the time. Were pulling out of Iraq but we do PKOs in other places. This crap will not cause very good perceptions for those countries and the US.
I hope he renounces the statement.... for his own career's sake.

Rising Sun*
11-02-2008, 07:06 AM
That´s what happens if an education system doesn´t allow an uninfluenced view on important parts of national history.

I doubt that the issue of corrupted civilian war education has much to do with General Tamogami's essay as he would, one expects, be rather better informed as a professional and very senior military officer about the realities of Japan's war. Unless, of course, military education about WWII is as badly corrupted as civilian education, which is more disturbing.

What is even more disturbing is that he might reflect the same sort of denials and nationalism in the military which has infected Japan's conservative civilian leaders for much of the post war period.

I'd like to see an impartial translation of his essay as the press and others often sensationalise aspects of such things.

While Japan has been exceptional in its perversion of its WWII history, it's a long way from being the only country to present a perverted or distorted view of its own history to its own people. No nation has clean hands in that area.

pdf27
11-02-2008, 07:48 AM
I hope he renounces the statement.... for his own career's sake.
Wouldn't help if he did - he was fired so fast his feet didn't touch the ground.

Major Walter Schmidt
11-02-2008, 10:04 AM
Wouldn't help if he did - he was fired so fast his feet didn't touch the ground.

I can see that.

Django
11-09-2008, 12:01 AM
Let's face it his ideas and thoughts about Japan's involvement in WW 2 are shared by many other Japanese, as scary as that seems.
Just compare it to how Germany or Italy feels about their part in WW 2,and for the most part its a whole lot more realistic.
IMHO Japan got off way too easy on their war crimes and that has led to the what alot of them feel about their actions in WW 2.

Major Walter Schmidt
11-09-2008, 08:18 AM
I looked in deeper with this but this is only one person, and is not the view of most Japanese military personell or citizen, outside of a military hobby shop. :mrgreen:
Also, this guy was not kicked but used a somewhat complicated political manouver to actualy retire, not get kicked. The administration is trying to do something about that right now.

Schwerpunkt
11-09-2008, 03:53 PM
I wonder if the good Japanese General ever heard of Area 31, the base in China where experiments were performed using toxic gasses and chemicals on POWs to practice for large spread use of gas and chemicals in Asia. Of course, the commandant of the base was taken to the USA where he was given a large pension for his data and expertise on the subject.
In addition, I wonder if the good Japanese general ever heard of the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere that in effect would be "eight corners of the world under one roof."
That one roof would be Japan.
IMHO, his revisionism is a WWII war crime.

Krad42
11-09-2008, 04:41 PM
Regardless of apologies made, which I believe have been made to appease certain nations, including the US, rather than actual remorse, I could hardly call any such comments actual revisionism on the Japanese officer's part, at least not in his own view. This is the way that many Japanese, military or civilian, feel about their actions during WW2. Revisionism implies that the general consensus about a historical event has been wrong and needs to be changed with the actual facts. While we may have shared such consensus regarding Japan's involvement, the Japanese haven't. He may have been "punished" for his comments, but I would suspect that this was so because it again places Japan in a spotlight that they'd rather avoid and not because his fellow Japanese think that what he said was wrong.

Chevan
11-10-2008, 07:58 AM
Mr Tamogami argued that Japan was drawn into World War II by then US president Franklin D Roosevelt, whom he said was being manipulated by the Comintern.

.
Oh this is something new:)
The President Roosewelt was being manipulated by.....Commintern.:)
What a fascinating idea.
OK so it was Rooswelt who draw the the Japane into the WW2.
For god sake, what force has pushed the Japs to the ..China in 1920yy ( Long long time BEFOR Rooswelt even become the president):)
What was that invisible force that make poor Japs to commite the genocide in China and Mongolia ?
Evil Zionist or Soviet commies?
Which one?:mrgreen:

pdf27
11-10-2008, 12:57 PM
Both - didn't you know most Zionists were Commies?

Chevan
11-10-2008, 03:49 PM
Both - didn't you know most Zionists were Commies?
Do the Commie controll the America too?
All is right. Look it up Comintern controlled Rooswelt, i.e. the Commi ruled by America:)

Rising Sun*
11-11-2008, 06:41 AM
Oh this is something new:)
The President Roosewelt was being manipulated by.....Commintern.:)
What a fascinating idea.
OK so it was Rooswelt who draw the the Japane into the WW2.
For god sake, what force has pushed the Japs to the ..China in 1920yy ( Long long time BEFOR Rooswelt even become the president):)
What was that invisible force that make poor Japs to commite the genocide in China and Mongolia ?
Evil Zionist or Soviet commies?
Which one?:mrgreen:

I think you've missed the obvious culprits: the White Russians who fled to China after losing to the Bolsheviks following the Revolution.

Japan, which also was controlled by the Comintern, was duped into going into China to finish off the White Russians the Reds couldn't reach in China.

So, the Comintern suckered Japan into China and then suckered America into imposing sanctions on Japan because of what Japan did in China, which led Roosevelt, under Comintern direction, to invite Japan to attack America so that the Comintern could carry out its long term plan of getting America to fight Germany after the Comintern suckered Hitler into invading the USSR so that the Soviets could lose millions of people before advancing westwards to the holy grail of Germany where Soviet troops could steal all the bicycles they liked, before handing them over to the Comintern which secretly shipped them all to Holland where the Dutch still ride bicycles everywhere and owe their nation's post-war mobility to the Comintern as they wait for orders from the Comintern to take over the rest of Europe when the rest of Europe has no bicycles and can't afford to import oil.

The Dutch are clearly the biggest threat to modern Europe. They should have their bike tyres punctured and their dykes breached before they can attack and plunge Europe into a new dark age. :mrgreen:

Rising Sun*
11-15-2008, 01:36 AM
Oh what a tangled web we weave,
When first we practise to deceive!



PM - Friday, 14 November , 2008 18:26:00
Reporter: Shane McLeod

MARK COLVIN: Japan's Prime Minister is having trouble with war history after he had to sack the head of the country's air force.

The speedy dismissal of a General who suggested Japan was lured into World War II was supposed to have placated Japan's neighbours and avoided yet another diplomatic flare-up over the past.

But as the Prime Minister Taro Aso has been finding out, his political opponents have used it as a chance to bring up Mr Aso's own connections to wartime history.

Specifically, the use of Australian Prisoners of War at a coalmine owned by the Aso family during the war years.

Shane McLeod reports from Tokyo.

SHANE MCLEOD: The recently departed chief of staff of Japan's Air Self Defence Force isn't toning down the comments that got him sacked.

General Toshio Tamogami was dumped after winning an essay competition with a piece of writing that suggested, amongst other things, that Japan was lured into World War II, and Japan's colonial legacy in China, Korea and Taiwan was largely benign.

He was brought before a parliamentary committee this week, which gave him another opportunity to have his say.

(Toshio Tamogami speaking)

"What I'm surprised about is that I mentioned Japan was a good country and then I was removed from my position", General Tamogami says. "I feel it's a little strange, it means they want someone for the post who says Japan is a bad country".

The now citizen Tamogami was dumped from his role as chief of staff of the air force, but he was allowed to retire from the force on full pension.

Prime Minister Taro Aso's move to quickly distance the government from the scandal seemed to tamp down criticism from Japan's neighbours. But for Japan's Opposition it's been an opportunity to raise questions about Mr Aso's own ties to Japan's wartime past, which they did in parliament this week.

(Sound of Yukihisa Fujita speaking)

This is Opposition MP Yukihisa Fujita, raising questions about the use of Allied Prisoners of War in a coal mine owned by Aso Mining, a company owned by Mr Aso's family.

Among the allied POWs who served in the mine were Australians. Mr Fujita asks Mr Aso whether he recognises there were allied POWs working in the mine during the war?

(Taro Aso speaking)

"I think you know that I was born in 1940", Mr Aso answers, "so at the time I was four or five-years-old. I was too young to recognise these facts, so honestly I didn't know anything at the time about Aso Mining. As regarding those facts now, I understand it hasn't been definitely confirmed".

That's a suggestion that historian and researcher William Underwood finds surprising.

He confirmed the links between Aso Mining and the POW labourers two years ago, while completing research for his doctoral thesis in Japan.

WILLIAM UNDERWOOD: It's quite remarkable because the documents themselves have been in the public realm for more than a year and the controversy surrounding the forced labour at Aso Mining is now more than two-years-old. So I'm just now sure what additional proof the Prime Minister would require?

SHANE MCLEOD: How to deal with his family's past has proven difficult for Mr Aso.

While he was only five-years-old at the end of the war, he went on to become head of the family company in the 1970s before entering parliament.

In 2006 as Foreign Minister, after news of the POW connections emerged, Mr Aso attended a ceremony at a Buddhist temple outside Osaka. The temple conducts a ceremony every year to honour POWs who died in custody in Japan during the war.

Initially the idea was that Mr Aso and ambassadors from some of the countries involved, including Australia, would attend the ceremony along with the minister.

But intense scrutiny, along with questions over whether Mr Aso would or should apologise, led to the ambassadorial invitations being withdrawn. Asked about it in Parliament Mr Aso says the plan was scaled down because he didn't want the scrutiny to overshadow the temple's ceremony.

(Taro Aso speaking)

"Until then it had been held quietly for a long time", Mr Aso says, "and I thought it was most undesirable for the war dead that it should become so noisy just because I went when I was foreign minister".

Even though Mr Aso is having trouble responding to his family's history, Dr Underwood believes it's something he may have known about for some time.

WILLIAM UNDERWOOD: Nobody's alleging that he personally took part in the forced labour enterprise. However, he did run the direct successor company during most of the 1970s. What we have now seems to be sort of a half step forward half step back approach to finessing the issue and just hoping it goes away by itself. http://www.abc.net.au/pm/content/2008/s2420451.htm

Rising Sun*
11-15-2008, 01:44 AM
plus ça change ...

Wind back a couple of years for Mr Aso.



Japanese foreign minister accused of mining goodwill

Deborah Cameron, Tokyo

June 26, 2006

AUSTRALIA is being manipulated in a propaganda effort that insults the war dead, according to historians and political analysts in Tokyo.

Japan's ambitious right-wing Foreign Minister Taro Aso and Japanese Government officials are arranging for a ceremony commemorating dead prisoners of war and for a timely photo-opportunity alongside the ambassadors from Australia, Britain, the Netherlands and the US.

But the Buddhist temple hosting the ceremony has been empty of Allied soldiers' remains since the end of World War II when they were taken to an official war cemetery about 360 kilometres away.

"It is very naive and outrageously disrespectful to the memory of our POWs," said Robyn Lim, professor of international relations at Nanzan University and a former acting head of current intelligence at the Office of National Assessments in Canberra.

"The Australian ambassador should be instructed not to go."

Professor Lim, an Australian, described the planned ceremony as a "disgusting trap" and said Australia had fallen for it.

Mr Aso, a candidate to be Japan's next prime minister, is organising the ceremony following embarrassing reports about conscripted workers and prisoners of war, including Australians, who worked and died as slave labourers in mines owned by his family. The Aso family, which built its wealth from its mines, has never apologised.

Dr William Wilkie of Brisbane, a nephew of 28-year-old Edgar Wilkie who died in the Aso family mine, said he would like to attend the ceremony to remember his uncle.

"Whether Mr Aso personally sincerely regrets his family getting filthy rich on conscripted and slave labour, I think that he would be tapping into a vein of a desire for reconciliation," Dr Wilkie said. "I think we would forgive Mr Aso whether he is fair dinkum or not."

The ceremony on July 3 has been initiated by officials from Mr Aso's department, according to the head priest at Juganji Temple, Yukio Konishi.

The involvement of the ambassadors, some of whom play golf with Mr Aso, was leaked by his department.

Japanese historian Yoshiko Tamura, who founded the POW Research Network of Japan to document the history of prisoners of war, said her group was sceptical about the Foreign Minister's motives.

"We think that it is going to be a propaganda opportunity," she said. "Our group believes all the ashes of the Allied prisoners of war were transferred to Yokohama, so there are no Allied POW ashes at the temple. So if Mr Aso and all the other people have a ceremony thinking that they are paying respect to the ashes, then it is not meaningful. There is nothing there to pray for."

Mrs Tamura said that if Mr Aso was genuinely remorseful about the POWs, he would attend a remembrance service held annually in November at the official war cemetery, half an hour by train from Tokyo.

"We invite the Japanese Government to the ceremony every November but no minister has ever attended," she said.

Mrs Tamura estimated that 95 per cent of Japanese would have no idea that Allied prisoners of war were used as forced labor by Japanese companies. Last Friday the Tokyo High Court dismissed a compensation claim by Chinese nationals used as slave labour, saying that although the companies were guilty they were not liable.

Professor William Underwood, an expert on wartime forced labour, said the July ceremony was "a belated half measure aimed at damage control" and called for the ambassadors to insist on some truth and candour.

"This has been the big problem for Japan. I am sure that the Foreign Ministry, and Aso in particular, is hoping this will be a one-off placate-the-critics-forever move," Professor Underwood said. "I would hope that it wouldn't be like that.

"If the ambassadors are going to attend that, they should do so with the determination to make this the first step." http://www.theage.com.au/articles/2006/06/25/1151174072377.html#

Rising Sun*
11-15-2008, 01:54 AM
The best laid schemes o' Mice an' Men,
Gang aft agley .....



Japan Foreign Minister’s Visit to POW Remembrance Service Backfires
By Matsubara Hiroshi and William Underwood

William Underwood

By now it has surely dawned on Japan’s political establishment, eager for issues of Japanese war accountability to fade away, that appointing Aso Taro to the post of foreign minister last fall was a major mistake. While Aso’s provocative comments about Japanese imperialism and war conduct predated his tenure as the nation’s top diplomat, the historical record of forced labor in Japan by Asians and Allied POWs is being newly thrust into the media spotlight.

Thousands of Korean labor conscripts were exploited for dangerous work in the northern Kyushu coalfields owned by Aso Mining Company between 1939 and 1945. Most Korean forced laborers never received the wages they earned; the money was deposited in the national treasury after the war and remains there today. The Aso family’s coal profits helped bankroll the rise of the dominant political figure in early postwar Japan, Yoshida Shigeru, who was prime minister when Aso Mining and scores of other Japanese corporations quietly deposited the unpaid wages of some 700,000 Korean labor conscripts. Yoshida was also Aso Taro’s grandfather.

The South Korean government’s Truth Commission on Forced Mobilization under Japanese Imperialism continues to demand, thus far with limited success, name rosters and data about human remains from Aso Mining’s successor company and the other firms. “The corporations’ remains survey has been insincere,” a Seoul government official charged last November. “It is also strange that the family company of the foreign minister, which should be setting an example, has provided no information whatsoever.”


Fukuoka POW Camp 3, pinhole camera photo by Terence Kirk http://www.mansell.com/pow_resources/camplists/fukuoka/fuku_3_tobata/fuku_3_kirk.html

Japan Focus recently publicized the fact that 300 Allied prisoners of war performed forced labor at Fukuoka POW Camp 26, better known as Aso Mining’s Yoshikuma coal pit. A stream of English-language media accounts of the Aso-POW connection followed in Japan, Australia, Canada, France, South Korea, Taiwan, the United States, the United Kingdom—and even Qatar. No Japanese-language media, however, have reported that Allied POWs toiled for the company headed during the 1970s by Aso Taro, even though the foreign minister is a candidate to succeed Koizumi Junichiro as prime minister in September. Aso has not yet replied to a written request for an apology and compensation sent to him in June by the daughter of an 87-year-old Australian man who worked without pay at the Aso Yoshikuma mine in 1945.

The article below, by Matsubara Hiroshi of the Asahi Shimbun, describes Aso’s participation in a controversial July 3 memorial service at Juganji temple outside Osaka, in honor of Allied POWs who died in Japanese labor camps. Ambassadors from wartime Allied nations were invited by Aso to participate in an official commemoration, but they were suddenly disinvited over fears that revelations about the foreign minister’s own ties to prisoner labor might cause some embassies to skip the service or send only junior staff. Aso ended up attending the ceremony in a private capacity and did not speak, making the event a missed opportunity for advancing the forced labor reparations process—at least for some Western victims. No state commemoration was ever contemplated for Korean and Chinese victims of forced labor in Japan, still less for the millions of nameless “romusha” coerced to labor across the Japanese wartime empire.

The Foreign Ministry shifted into damage control mode regarding the Juganji fiasco during a July 4 press conference, as a transcript available at the ministry’s website shows. Aso’s spokesman contended that “malicious news reports” were responsible for the service being downsized at the last minute, while implausibly insisting the ministry was never officially involved. Yet not a single media interrogator asked about POWs at Aso Mining, which was the chief reason why the event aroused controversy in the first place. Would Japanese society even care about Allied POW forced labor at a coalmine owned by the foreign minister’s family? The answer is unknown, because Japanese media have failed to provide the information needed to form an opinion.

Efforts toward healing and reconciliation are moving forward anyway, in the face of opposition by the Japanese state and corporations. Last May, the annual convention of the American Defenders of Bataan and Corregidor (ADBC) was held in Phoenix, Arizona, and attended by 72 ex-POWs and 300 family members. Keynote speaker Lester Tenney was held at Fukuoka POW Camp 17 and dug coal without pay for the giant Mitsui Company. Tenney’s speech (available in PDF format) relates how the fight for compensation in American courts by POW forced laborers ended in failure amid staunch opposition from Washington as well as Tokyo.


Lester Tenney demands apology and compensation in San
Francisco, 2001

Former POW and ADBC member Terence Kirk died at age 89 in early May. Kirk secretly used a pinhole camera (photos available) to document the appalling conditions at Fukuoka POW Camp 3, which provided workers for steel mills located not far from the Aso Yoshikuma mine. Duane Heisinger, whose father was killed on a POW hellship late in the war, also died just before the ADBC convention. Heisinger was the driving force behind the Hellships Memorial that was dedicated in the Philippines earlier this year and author of Father Found.

Represented at the Phoenix event were the California-based U.S.-Japan Dialogue on POWs and the Tokyo-based POW Research Network Japan, grassroots groups dedicated to reconciliation. Following inquiries by the former group, the Japanese Embassy in Washington on May 17 clarified the status of the government’s “Peace, Friendship and Exchange Initiative.” The little-known program, aimed at “facilitating a sincere and honest appraisal of the past and promoting mutual understanding,” brings about 40 to 50 British and Dutch ex-POWs or family members to Japan for goodwill visits each year. All other nationalities have thus far been excluded from the program, a reality that Lester Tenney called unfair and may campaign to change.

“While our feelings of deep remorse and heartfelt apology are no different towards British, Dutch and American POWs, the circumstances surrounding the POWs are different with each country and no similar program currently exists for the former American POWs,” wrote the Japanese Embassy in response to the inquiry. Redress movements for all classes of forced labor in wartime Japan, far from abating, are being reinvigorated—due in part to the family background of the man now serving as Japan’s official face to the world. http://www.japanfocus.org/products/details/2182

Rising Sun*
11-15-2008, 02:02 AM
..... An' lea'e us nought but grief an' pain,
For promis'd joy!

The Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere at work, and Mr Aso's inheritance from it.


Family Skeletons: Japan’s Foreign Minister and Forced Labor by Koreans and Allied POWs

By Christopher Reed

Aso Mining Company had been producing coal to fuel Japan’s modernization for nearly 70 years by the time Aso Taro, Japan’s current foreign minister, was born in 1940. Faced with a severe heavy labor shortage as the China war gave way to the Pacific War, Japanese industry increasingly turned to Korean, Allied POW and Chinese forced labor. Some 10,000 Korean forced laborers toiled under miserable conditions for Aso Mining. In addition, it is now emerging that 300 Allied prisoners of war performed forced labor at Fukuoka POW Branch Camp No. 26, better known as the Aso Yoshikuma coal mine. Two-thirds of the prisoners were Australian; one-third was British; two were Dutch.

None of these 300 men ever received payment for their work or an apology from Aso Mining or the Japanese government, much less from the sitting foreign minister. The company’s Korean labor conscripts received wages in theory, but in practice the bulk of salaries were withheld during the war and ultimately were never paid. Soon after the war companies like Aso Mining deposited unpaid wages for Korean and Chinese forced labor with the Bank of Japan, which continues to hold the money today.

The cold intransigence is part of a well-established pattern. For six decades the Japanese state and corporations have refused to apologize or pay reparations to any of the hundreds of thousands of Koreans and the tens of thousands of Allied POWs and Chinese who became victims of corporate forced labor within wartime Japan. Relatively little is even known about the millions of so-called “romusha,” Asians who worked against their will for the Japanese empire across vast stretches of the Asia Pacific, after being nominally liberated from the yoke of Western colonialism.

Aso Taro, after heading the family business for most of the 1970s, followed in the family tradition and entered politics, eventually becoming his country’s top diplomat—as well as a leading neonationalist who seeks to affirm the legitimacy of Japan’s goals and conduct during World War II. Moreover, he is among the leading candidates to replace Koizumi Junichiro when he retires as prime minister in September.

The contrast to European and North American handling of forced labor and other lingering World War II issues is instructive. Germany has chosen a path of reconciliation by proactively settling wartime forced labor accounts. The “Remembrance, Responsibility and the Future” Foundation was established in 2000, with funding of some $6 billion provided by the German federal government and more than 6,500 industrial enterprises. As reparations payments drew to a close in late 2005, about 1.6 million forced labor victims or their heirs had received individual apologies and symbolic compensation of up to $10,000. Similarly, the Austrian Reconciliation Fund recently finished paying out nearly $350 million to 132,000 workers forced to toil for the Nazi war machine in that country, or their families. Beginning in the mid-1990s, Swiss and French banks and insurance companies paid hefty restitution for assets looted from Holocaust victims. In 1988, both the US Congress and the Canadian Parliament granted official apologies and individual compensation of $20,000 to ethnic Japanese who had been interned during the war.

Today activists in China, the Koreas, the West and Japan are demanding that the historical reality of widespread forced labor by the Japanese state and private sector be honestly recognized and redressed. Information is a key to these transnational reparations movements, and the article below by Christopher Reed, drawing on the contributions of Japanese and international researchers, succeeds in doing what Japan’s mass media has consistently failed to do. Reed provides a clear account of the Aso family’s deep ties to forced labor and Aso Taro’s personal leadership of the company. At a time of mounting regional tensions, which the Foreign Minister himself is fueling, Reed asks the logical question: is Aso Taro fit to head Japan’s foreign policy establishment? —William Underwood]


While Aso Taro's public statements as foreign minister have only exacerbated tensions between Tokyo and the rest of Asia, a family connection to wartime forced labor has raised further questions over his ability to oversee good relations with Japan's neighbors.

During World War II, the Aso family's mining company used thousands of Koreans as forced laborers. This legacy of Koreans, Chinese and other Asians being coerced into slave-like working conditions across the region more than six decades ago has become an issue in Tokyo's maintenance of normal diplomatic relations in East Asia. Awareness of the fact that 300 Allied POWs also performed forced labor at an Aso coal mine is now spreading in Western countries.


Japanese Foreign Minister Aso Taro

Aso's family background, and his personal refusal to engage the issue, has led some to suggest that his position as foreign minister is untenable.

Meanwhile, recent research by a group of historians in Kyushu has provided new details on the role of the Aso family in using Korean labor before and during the war. The Korean pit workers, according to the historians, were systematically underpaid, underfed, overworked, and confined in penury. Forced to toil underground, they were watched by guards 24 hours a day. Their release came only with Japan's 1945 defeat.

Aso himself ran the Fukuoka company from 1973-79, when he entered politics. During that time he did not address its history of using forced labor, nor has he since, while he continues to maintain his relationship with the firm. This stance forecloses the possible argument that at 65, Aso has the excuse of a generational separation. continued ....

Rising Sun*
11-15-2008, 02:05 AM
GERMAN REACTION

According to one German Embassy official in Tokyo, speaking on the understanding of anonymity, while family lineage on its own would not be held against an individual in his nation, Aso's actions here make him an unsuitable foreign minister by German standards. "Because Aso's family connection gave him the opportunity to address wrongs in the firm, and he did not do so," as well as comments that "seem to defend criminal policies of the past," Aso would "not be acceptable" for a post such as foreign minister. "He might get into parliament," said the official, "but not into government." The Foreign Ministry in Tokyo did not respond to inquiries on the issue.

The Chinese foreign minister, Li Zhaoxing, also recently quoted a German government official's puzzlement over the "silly act" of Japanese prime minister Koizumi Junichiro's continuing visits to the Yasukuni shrine in Tokyo, where 14 Class-A war criminals are enshrined. A German leader, the government official told Li, would never worship at the burial places of Adolf Hitler or convicted Nazi war criminals.

Such thoughts from Germans are reinforced by Aso's espousal of Japanese racial supremacy, such as displayed in a remark in a speech at the opening of the Kyushu National Museum in Fukuoka last October. Then, he described Japan as "one nation, one civilization, one language, one culture, and one race, the like of which there is no other on earth." It was an observation that echoed Japan's fascist period of 1930-45.

Japanese media scholars have expressed concern at the lack of detailed reporting on Japan's corporate forced labor, and on Aso's family's role in particular. "As Aso is a candidate for prime minister in September, his attitudes and his behavior are political issues," says Hanada Tatsuro of Tokyo University. "The question of his qualifications is an important subject that should be opened to the Japanese public." Hanada as well as Ofer Feldman, an author and Japan political scholar, blame Japan's kisha press club system, in which journalists keep quiet about controversial issues that might harm their contacts, for media silence on the Aso connection.

CORPORATE HISTORY

The Aso family coal mining business dates back to the 19th century in Kyushu's rich Chikuho coal fields in Fukuoka. Aso's great-grandfather, Takakichi, founded the firm in 1872. At one time it owned over half a dozen pits in Kyushu and was the biggest of three family corporations mining an area producing half of Japan's "black diamonds."

The issue of the foreign minister's family links to Korean wartime forced labor has already arisen in meetings between Japan and South Korea. Choi Bong Tae, a member of a bilateral commission studying the issue of forced labor, told reporters in November that the Japanese side had provided no information on the Aso company and others it had named. A spokesman for the Aso Group, the successor company of Aso Mining, said that it would be difficult to provide such data since records aren't available from that long ago.

However, research conducted by Kyushu historians has provided new information on the role of the Aso family in exploiting Korean labor before and during the war. Hayashi Eidai, Ono Takashi, and Fukudome Noriaki, all now retired, drew on official and local library resources to gather contemporaneous statistics and reports on the Aso family's mining operation, some of which Hayashi published in books.


Documents outlining work requirements at a POW mining camp

According to the company's own statistics, by March 1944, Aso mines had a total of 7,996 Korean laborers, of whom 56 had recently died. Some 4,919 had managed to escape the forced labor regime. Across Fukuoka, the total fugitive figure amounted to 51.3 percent of the forced laborers. At Aso Mines, the figure was 61.5 percent, "because their record was worse," said Fukudome. Data compiled by the Kyushu trio shows that Korean workers at Aso Mines were paid a third less than equivalent Japanese laborers to dig coal. It amounted to 50 yen a month, but less than 10 yen after mandatory confiscations for food, clothes, housing and enforced savings. The enforced savings, to discourage attempts at escape, often remained unpaid. Workers toiled for 15-hour days, seven days a week, with no holidays. A three-meter high fence topped with electrified barbed wire ringed the perimeter.

In 1939, the Japanese government passed the National General Mobilization law, which forced all colonial subjects, including Koreans, and those in Taiwan and Manchuria, to work wherever needed by Tokyo. The Kyushu historians have documented the fact that Aso Mining was shipping Korean laborers to Kyushu as early as the mid-1930s, before the law was passed. Although precise numbers are unavailable, an estimated 12,000 laborers passed through the company, some necessitated by a strike of 400 miners in 1932. After 1939, the historians calculate, the number of Asians kept in forced labor throughout the Chikuho region swelled.

The Aso Group has changed names more than once and in 2001 entered a joint venture with Lafarge Cement of France, the world's largest cement maker. Aso's younger brother Yutaka remained president of what became Lafarge Aso Cement Co. Last December, the French ambassador in Tokyo awarded Yutaka the Legion d'Honneur at a champagne reception. Guests of honor were Aso Taro and his wife, Chikako.

FAMILY BACKGROUND

It seemed a fitting tribute to a family steeped in Japan's recent aristocratic traditions. Aso is the scion of a family of landed gentry throughout the 19th century. His great-great grandfather, Okubo Toshimichi, a samurai, was one of five powerful nobles who led the 1868 overthrow of the centuries-old shogunate era that ushered in modern times in Japan. Aso Taro graduated from Gakushuin University, which traditionally educates Japan's imperial family, spent time at London University, joined what was then Aso Industries, and quickly became a director. Appropriate to his high-born antecedents, he joined the Japanese rifle shooting team in the 1976 Olympics in Montreal.

Aso’s grandfather, Yoshida Shigeru, served as prime minister of Japan five times between 1946 and 1954. An autocratic conservative, conveniently for the Aso family, he conducted a 1950s purge of "reds" in the coal mining unions. Chikako adds to the family's upper-class luster as the daughter of Suzuki Zenko, Liberal Democratic Party prime minister from 1980-82.

There is even a royal link. Aso's sister Nobuko married Prince Tomohito of Mikasa, the emperor's cousin, recently in the headlines over his opposition to a woman occupying the chrysanthemum throne. Tomohito suggested continuing the male line through concubines, an imperial tradition that would move Japan back several centuries.

With his history of relatives who occupied senior political positions, Aso follows both a tradition and a type of thinking largely unchanged for many decades. Including the prime minister himself, Koizumi’s cabinet contains six men directly related to former premiers, government ministers, or Diet members. A seventh, regional minister Chuma Koki's father, was mayor of Osaka. Koizumi's grandfather and father were ministers, and his cousin a kamikaze pilot who dove to his death in 1945. He shares the 'divine wind' relationship with chief cabinet secretary Abe Shinzo, but his kamikaze-trained father never made his ultimate flight. Instead he rose to be foreign minister from 1982-86.


Liberated Allied POWs at a Kyushu prison camp on September 15, 1945

Abe, frontrunner to succeed Koizumi as prime minister next fall, is also the grandson of Kishi Nobusuke, who spent three years in Sugamo Prison as a Class-A war crimes suspect. Remarkably, Kishi went on to become prime minister from 1957-60, in which capacity he actively blocked efforts by Japanese activists and the Diet itself to obtain government records about Chinese forced labor -- the war crime that Kishi himself helped perpetrate as a wartime cabinet minister in charge of economic production and munitions. (For details see a previous Japan Focus report: Chinese Forced Labor, the Japanese Government and the Prospects for Redress.)

These backgrounds may help to explain the frame of mind that has produced the series of provocative, neonationalist remarks by Aso, such as the museum speech claim about Japanese uniqueness. These have angered Japan's neighbors, particularly China and the Koreas, through their reiteration of colonialist attitudes. The museum remark ignored Japan's actual racial origins, and its lack of the homogeneity that many falsely claim. Aso appeared oblivious to the presence of his country's aboriginals, the Ainu of Hokkaido, who bear physically different biological characteristics, and the people of Okinawa. Both these populations have their own languages, and anthropologists and archeologists have long agreed that the mainland Japanese owe their origins to several areas of Asia. continued .....

Rising Sun*
11-15-2008, 02:06 AM
NEONATIONALIST AGENDA

Aso has recently claimed that Koreans who changed their names to Japanese ones under colonial rule by Tokyo from 1910-45, did so voluntarily. This ignored a law passed by Japan that compelled them to do so and imposed penalties and direct pressures on those who refused. In early February he added that Taiwan's present high educational standards resulted from compulsory education, "a good thing" imposed by Japan during its colonial rule over the island from 1895-1945.

An ardent supporter of honoring Japan's war dead at Yasukuni, Aso did appear to overstep what was acceptable to his LDP colleagues in January. He said that Emperor Akihito should visit the shrine, but this was immediately downplayed by political colleagues who clearly wished to disassociate themselves and the party from his urgings. The current emperor has in fact never visited Yasukuni and his continued absence is surely (though not stated publicly) related to the war criminals, who were enshrined -- a better word might be "sanctified" in view of their divine status "kami" -- in Yasukuni since 1978. The late Emperor Hirohito never visited the shrine after that.

Foreign minister Aso has also publicly supported the Yushukan museum, which adjoins Yasukuni and proudly advances a revisionist historical narrative. Yushukan, remodeled in 2002, glorifies Japanese war conduct through relics such as a locomotive from the notorious Thai-Burma railway, the forced labor construction of which caused the death of 16,000 Allied prisoners of war and 100,000 Asians.

The Yushukan museum

Aso's persistently provocative remarks prompted the New York Times, in an unusual move, to editorialize against Aso on February 13. Under the headline "Japan's Offensive Foreign Minister," the newspaper accused him of being "neither honest nor wise in inflammatory statements about Japan's disastrous era of militarism, colonialism and war crimes that culminated in the Second World War." It added that "public discourse in Japan and modern history lessons in its schools have never properly come to terms with the country's responsibility for such terrible events as the mass kidnapping and sexual enslavement of Korean young women, the biological warfare experiments carried out on Chinese cities and helpless prisoners of war, and the sadistic slaughter of thousands of Chinese civilians in the city of Nanjing [December 1937-February 1938]."

It was perhaps an oversight that the Times did not mention enforced serf labor in its list of Japanese war crimes, but like every other major mainstream newspaper it has ignored the Aso family's involvement in this. I first detailed the conditions at Aso mines for the coerced Korean laborers (and, I have since discovered, British and Australian prisoners of war) on February 2 in CounterPunch, the US-based online political website. Since then as a working journalist, I have tried to publish the details in various mainstream publications, without success.

MEDIA INDIFFERENCE

Rejection or silence greeted my attempts at the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Le Monde, the Washington Post, the Toronto Star, the Globe and Mail in Canada, the Sydney Morning Herald, the Age of Melbourne, the Australian, the Bulletin news magazine of Australia, and the Observer and the New Statesman in UK (almost all of which know of my work). Rejections in Japan came from the Shukan Kinyobi, Shukan Post, Shukan Sekai, and Shinchosa. The only taker was Sisa Journal in South Korea. My rewritten CounterPunch article was then printed in the April issue of Number 1 Shimbun, the monthly news publication of the Foreign Correspondents' Club of Japan, where I am a member. This is read by bureau chiefs of every major newspaper and television channel represented in Japan, as well as by many Japanese journalists. Yet I continued to hear nothing until a colleague suggested I contact the Japan Times. It accepted my Aso article and ran it on April 25.

This account of editorial rejection is not the grumblings of a slighted correspondent (I have been and continue to be published and broadcast elsewhere), but an important insight into media attitudes in these times. Some editors brushed off my "pitch" with the remark that it was old news. This was untrue. Although such media as the BBC and agencies had made passing references to the Aso slave-labor involvement, these were in the form of allegations made in South Korea, and took up no more space than a paragraph. Such dismissals were in fact a belated rationale for a reluctance to delve into the embarrassment of a major (conservative) political figure in Asia. The fact remains that not one major Japanese or foreign mainstream media has published a detailed account of Japan's foreign minister's connection to forced labor in wartime Japan, despite its being readily available.


Liberated Korean laborers assisting American GIs

The entire episode has reinforced the impression formed soon after my return to Japan last year after an absence of 30 years. It has not become more "westernized" and liberal, as so many commentators, particularly on the business side, like to claim. On the contrary, its underlying rightist nationalism with the attendant suppression of unsuitable news is emerging once more. Yet at the very time when observers should be most alert, they are failing in their duty to scrutinize.

In the 1970s, we young correspondents in Tokyo were mostly unaware of the hideous record of Japan's atrocities and its iron fist in the rest of Asia. The words "colonialism" and "fascism" were never uttered. The US Occupation's decision to sanitize Emperor Hirohito had much to do with this, for exonerating the man at the top made it risky to dwell on what happened under his ultimate jurisdiction. Now that the truth has mostly come out, Western commentators are under another influence that manifests itself in a similar way. They downplay Japan's ugly past this time, not as an excuse or diversion from the imminent Cold War rhetoric against Soviet communism, but as an excuse or diversion from a possible Asian Cold War. Nothing must detract from the freshly minted diatribes against China as the latest "communist" menace to a free world -- its "considerable threat" in Aso's words.

The mendacity of this current propaganda was recently encapsulated by Kawata Takuji, Yomiuri's deputy international news editor. In the daily edition's English translation of April 28, he complained about China's "high-handed" attitude toward Japan's high-ranking Yasukuni worshippers. Not one word from Kawata on the half century in which Japan slaughtered, plundered, raped, and ravaged China, and for which it has yet to atone or make suitable amends. Nor did he mention the growing tendency in Japan to deny that those events even happened.

Not for a minute did I expect on returning to Japan after 30 years that the main obstacle to its enjoyment of normal peaceful foreign relations would be the refusal to come to terms effectively with the horrors it committed more than 60 years previously. Yet that is the case. The subject will not go away, but grow larger. In fact, Foreign Minister Aso seems to be doing his best to keep the process going. http://www.japanfocus.org/products/details/1627

Chevan
11-15-2008, 12:33 PM
I think you've missed the obvious culprits: the White Russians who fled to China after losing to the Bolsheviks following the Revolution.

Japan, which also was controlled by the Comintern, was duped into going into China to finish off the White Russians the Reds couldn't reach in China.

So, the Comintern suckered Japan into China and then suckered America into imposing sanctions on Japan because of what Japan did in China, which led Roosevelt, under Comintern direction, to invite Japan to attack America so that the Comintern could carry out its long term plan of getting America to fight Germany after the Comintern suckered Hitler into invading the USSR so that the Soviets could lose millions of people before advancing westwards to the holy grail of Germany where Soviet troops could steal all the bicycles they liked, before handing them over to the Comintern which secretly shipped them all to Holland where the Dutch still ride bicycles everywhere and owe their nation's post-war mobility to the Comintern as they wait for orders from the Comintern to take over the rest of Europe when the rest of Europe has no bicycles and can't afford to import oil.

The Dutch are clearly the biggest threat to modern Europe. They should have their bike tyres punctured and their dykes breached before they can attack and plunge Europe into a new dark age. :mrgreen:
:mrgreen:
OK , its clear , all world's evil come from ..ducth:) who have bought all the bikes for their grass that they smoke all the time.Obviously they have started the ww2, make Commintern to order to red army to steal all the European bikes.And made Japane suckered into China.
The Japane is a victim of Commintern, that BTW has been established and worked in the Soviet Russia since 1917, alongside Zionists.
So the only question that we shall discuss , according General Toshio Tamogami concepts of history, is why did dastard Comminter order to American gov to start to bomb the Japane, that obviously was innocent , and has been provoked by the Commintern , placed in Russia

Rising Sun*
11-29-2008, 07:03 AM
The most recent evidence suggests that the Japanese PM is just a bigoted, upper class, overly rich idiot. Then again, that's the crew from which he is directly descended which supported and profited from Japan's last great failed attempt to take over Asia.


Japan leader irks public with insensitive remark
By MARI YAMAGUCHI

TOKYO (AP) — Japan's gaffe-prone prime minister is in trouble again — this time for a remark criticizing the elderly for racking up medical expenses and being a tax burden.

"They're hobbling around and constantly going to the doctor," Prime Minister Taro Aso was quoted as saying in a transcript of a Nov. 20 meeting of ministers on economic policies. Aso also said the elderly should be faulted for not exercising enough.

The transcript was released overnight, drawing immediate criticism in the Japanese media and forcing an apology from the prime minister Thursday.

"I apologize if the remarks offended people who are suffering illnesses," Aso said on nationally televised news.

He told reporters that he intended to talk about the value of preventive medicine and merely highlight the gap between people who take care of their health and those who do not.

Opposition leader Yukio Hatoyama lambasted Aso.

"I can't help but wonder whether such a person is really fit to be prime minister," Hatoyama said.

Aso's comments are likely to erode his already sagging popularity.

He has already had to apologize for joking about people with Alzheimer's disease, saying the ideal country would be one that attracts "the richest Jewish people," and comparing the opposition Democratic Party of Japan to the Nazis. http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5g_sK6_doonbtCR8qDquVWTc7LUHQD94N9K282

Rising Sun*
11-29-2008, 07:18 AM
:mrgreen:
OK , its clear , all world's evil come from ..ducth:) who have bought all the bikes for their grass that they smoke all the time.Obviously they have started the ww2, make Commintern to order to red army to steal all the European bikes.And made Japane suckered into China.
The Japane is a victim of Commintern, that BTW has been established and worked in the Soviet Russia since 1917, alongside Zionists.
So the only question that we shall discuss , according General Toshio Tamogami concepts of history, is why did dastard Comminter order to American gov to start to bomb the Japane, that obviously was innocent , and has been provoked by the Commintern , placed in Russia

Mate, haven't you been listening to the Western press? ;)

Russia (previously the USSR although most commentators couldn't tell the difference) is the greatest threat to world peace, as demonstrated by some of its military aggression where it fielded huge forces in conflicts such as the Vietnam War; Gulf War I; and Gulf War II, where Russia / the USSR went way beyond its borders while the West stayed home in its usual peaceful fashion. :rolleyes:

Chevan
12-01-2008, 12:54 AM
Mate, haven't you been listening to the Western press? ;)

Russia (previously the USSR although most commentators couldn't tell the difference) is the greatest threat to world peace, as demonstrated by some of its military aggression where it fielded huge forces in conflicts such as the Vietnam War; Gulf War I; and Gulf War II, where Russia / the USSR went way beyond its borders while the West stayed home in its usual peaceful fashion. :rolleyes:
Mate the most of "commentators" still think that USA was fighting with both Germany and USSR ( who fight alongside) in ww2 and seriously wondering when they learn - Why there were no Shermans M4 during "Kursk battle".:D

Cojimar 1945
12-03-2008, 05:12 PM
I did see a book in a library that appeared to be arguing that nazism had its roots in Russia. I did not examine the book in detail but I think the title was "The Russian Roots of Nazism" or something like that. However, this might be irrelevant to the war crimes of the Japanese.

Do people feel that starting in the 1930s the Japanese started behaving considerably more viciously towards other people than was the case beforehand? I was under the impression that in the Russo-Japanese war, WWI and the Japanese intervention in Siberia, atrocities did not occur that approached the scale of those in the 1930s and 1940s. However, I would be interested in other people's opinions.

Rising Sun*
12-03-2008, 09:52 PM
Do people feel that starting in the 1930s the Japanese started behaving considerably more viciously towards other people than was the case beforehand? I was under the impression that in the Russo-Japanese war, WWI and the Japanese intervention in Siberia, atrocities did not occur that approached the scale of those in the 1930s and 1940s. However, I would be interested in other people's opinions.

During the Russo-Japanese War Japan went out of its way to observe the Hague Convention and generally to advertise to the world that it would treat Russian prisoners humanely.

A lot of this arose from Japan's desire to be seen as an equal to European nations in its international conduct rather than from any internal humanitarian tradition on treatment of prisoners of war.

In practice the high standards weren't always observed in prison camps where local commandants took a narrower view, but generally the Russians were fed, housed, and treated adequately, and rather better than many prisoners of war during the American Civil War and by European nations during the First World War.

However, there were still tensions within the Japanese military about treating the prisoners so well as many officers thought it was rewarding Russians for becoming prisoners when they should have been ashamed of surrendering.

Nonetheless, while inevitably there were some instances of slight to moderate brutality towards some Russian prisoners, in general they were well treated by the standards of the day. There was certainly none of the brutality and sadism which accompanied Japan's later military adventures in China and other parts of Asia and the Pacific.

Cojimar 1945
12-08-2008, 08:11 PM
Do people find it odd that the Japanese would suddenly become far more brutal than they had been before? What caused this? The idea that entire nations would suddenly turn evil seems far fetched but it seems that one could make a case that this is what happened in Germany and Japan. Do people have any theories as to what caused Germany and Japan to turn to the dark side?

It would be interesting to know if the axis leaders gave any signs of turning evil back during WWI that could have foreshadowed their later villainy.

Rising Sun*
12-12-2008, 06:11 AM
Do people find it odd that the Japanese would suddenly become far more brutal than they had been before?

One might equally ask what provoked the Japanese to be such great humanitarians during the Russo-Japanese and Great Wars?

I'd suggest that the answer is that Japan was trying to establish itself among the great nations, and to do so it tried to outdo them in its Western conduct.

The next question is what provoked Japan to reverse that process?

I'd suggest that, in part, it was because the Western nations, notably Britain and America, abandoned Japan in various respects after WWI and treated it as an inferior. This influenced Japanese nationalism, which was already present for other reasons, to focus more on Japanese than Western values and history which extolled the virtues of, for example, the samurai which was then moulded to the ambitions of the nationalists and militarists in the late 1920s and 1930s.

Cojimar 1945
12-12-2008, 03:34 PM
What makes you think they abandoned Japan? I can certainly believe that the Japanese were treated as inferiors by some people in America and elsewhere but racism against the Japanese was prevalent prior to WWI. What makes you think the treatment of the Japanese was worse prior to WWI? Not trying to be argumentative, just curious.

Rising Sun*
12-13-2008, 04:39 AM
What makes you think they abandoned Japan?


Britain made an unnecessary enemy of Japan at the 1921 Washington Conference by ending its alliance with Japan, under prodding from America, Canada and Australia. Up to that point Japan had regarded its alliance with Britain as a pillar of its foreign and defence policies. Not unlike Australia's view of its alliance with Britain, which fell apart in rather more pressing circumstances a couple of decades later under pressure from the Japanese advances. The difference was that Japan saw its alliance with Britain as confirming its status as an important power, which self-image was damaged by the unilateral termination of the alliance by Britain. Fair weather friends, and all that!

Japan was consistently reminded of its inferior status in the eyes of the Western nations which had forced it into trade with them against its will. Australia's White Australia policy from the beginning of the 20th century. The rejection of Japan's ill-conceived racial equality proposal at Versailles in 1919 (ill-conceived because no colonial nation could accept what was intended by Japan to be a "Japanese equality" clause), largely at Australia‘s instigation. America’s anti-Japanese immigration policy in 1924.

Where Japan had been nominally, and conveniently, an Ally in WWI with the Western Allies, those Allies rapidly treated it with contempt and generated some of the antipathy which would result in WWII. #15 at http://www.ww2incolor.com/forum/showthread.php?t=4631


I can certainly believe that the Japanese were treated as inferiors by some people in America and elsewhere but racism against the Japanese was prevalent prior to WWI. What makes you think the treatment of the Japanese was worse prior to WWI?

I don't think it was worse prior to WWI, but prior to WWII.


Not trying to be argumentative, just curious.

I know. Your questions are perfectly reasonable.

Maybe I should have said the West 'rejected' Japan rather than 'abandoned' it.

Kregs
12-18-2008, 10:27 PM
Let's face it his ideas and thoughts about Japan's involvement in WW 2 are shared by many other Japanese, as scary as that seems.
Just compare it to how Germany or Italy feels about their part in WW 2,and for the most part its a whole lot more realistic.


Embarrassement, humiliation, scorn. These three adjectives coming from a nation, Germany, who not only lost but divided four times by the allied powers. Italy, on the other hand, did not suffer as much at the hands of the allied powers mostly because changed sides in 1943 and allowed to quickly join NATO. Japan was occupied by American forces until the 1960s.

Nickdfresh
01-12-2009, 06:07 PM
01/12/09 06:36 AM
Revisionists defending Japan’s role in WWII remain widely popular
By Mari Yamaguchi
ASSOCIATED PRESS

TOKYO — Toshio Tamogami draws a full pension, gives lectures, appears on television talk shows and is treated with respect.

Not bad for a general who two months ago was fired for writing an essay justifying Japan’s entry into World War II.

The case of the ousted air force chief reveals how the idea that Japan’s war was justified still lives on in the minds of many Japanese, including powerful ones.

When Japan went to war, the nation was told it was for self-defense, to free Asia from Western colonial powers and to deter the United States from attacking Japan.

Japan officially abandoned that view of history after its crushing defeat in 1945. But every so often a Japanese higher-up would roil the waters by justifying Japanese conduct in the war and treatment of its neighbors. Not until 1995 did a Japanese prime minister acknowledge his country was an aggressor that had brought about great suffering in Asia.

The air force chief’s essay shows that Japan’s argument with history isn’t over.

It was entered in a contest sponsored by a commercial company and conducted by Toshio Motoya, a right-leaning businessman. Motoya said 235 essays were submitted, a third by air force officers, and most shared Tamogami’s views.

“We should review our perspective of history and become a truly independent nation, or our future is at risk,” Motoya said. “I’m confident Mr. Tamogami will get credit some day for sacrificing his job by what he wrote.”

Tamogami, 60, called his essay “Was Japan an Aggressor Nation?” and wrote that Japan has been unjustly subjected to “the history of the victor.”

He also said his country deserves praise for building universities in Taiwan and Korea when they were Japanese colonies before the war. The affair made headlines and stirred debate in parliament.

While Prime Minister Taro Aso has been circumspect, saying only that Tamogami’s public expression of such views was out of step with government statements, former Trade Minister Takeo Hiranuma praised Tamogami for his frankness.

“What Mr. Tamogami said was true,” he said in a video on his Web site. “We should take this opportunity to study harder so we can have correct views of Japan’s history.”

But about 140 members of the History Educators Conference of Japan issued a protest.

“There are many people, including political leaders, who support Tamogami’s views,” said Hisao Ishiyama, a historian. “It’s not a problem of one fanatic military official.”

Tamogami’s views are common among nationalists, including former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who, with a strong segment of the ruling party behind him, spearheaded a partially successful campaign over several years to remove mention of Japan’s wartime atrocities from textbooks.

Only in recent years, after lawsuits from victims, has Japan acknowledged many of its brutalities, including the use of poison gas in China.


BuffaloNews (http://www.buffalonews.com/nationalworld/international/story/546687.html)

Rising Sun*
01-12-2009, 09:41 PM
01/12/09 06:36 AM
Revisionists defending Japan’s role in WWII remain widely popular
By Mari Yamaguchi
ASSOCIATED PRESS

He also said his country deserves praise for building universities in Taiwan and Korea when they were Japanese colonies before the war.



He forgot to mention a railway built in Thailand by Japan during the war, not to mention grave sites all along its length, and free trips for Korean girls all over the Pacific where they could be educated even further by selfless Japanese soldiers willing to give up their time for the purpose. :rolleyes:

Nickdfresh
01-12-2009, 10:46 PM
He forgot to mention a railway built in Thailand by Japan during the war, not to mention grave sites all along its length, and free trips for Korean girls all over the Pacific where they could be educated even further by selfless Japanese soldiers willing to give up their time for the purpose. :rolleyes:

Yes. It was really quite touching the way the average Japanese Imperial Soldier gave up his precious virginity to pleasure these girls...

Rising Sun*
01-12-2009, 11:40 PM
Yes. It was really quite touching the way the average Japanese Imperial Soldier gave up his precious virginity to pleasure these girls...

Yes, and what gratitude did they get from the Korean girls? Just baseless allegations of rape and sexual slavery.

No wonder some Japanese feel that their war activities aren't properly appreciated. :evil:

Chevan
01-13-2009, 03:07 AM
I did see a book in a library that appeared to be arguing that nazism had its roots in Russia. I did not examine the book in detail but I think the title was "The Russian Roots of Nazism" or something like that. .


This is stopid ..nonsense.
Indeed Nacism was born in/for mono-national society.
In multinational state like Russian Empire was - nacism was never a real matter.To the contrast of sort of internationalism.
The Nacism might be applied ONLY in the single -ethnical monogam state kinda GErmany , Japane , Finland or ....Israel( yea why not:) - where the absolute majority of inhabitans belongs to the single Ethnical group.
True, some people in Russian were developing the Natism theory, but this EVil ( as other Evil- Communism) has come to Russia from the West.

Egorka
01-13-2009, 03:52 AM
Originally Posted by Cojimar 1945
I did see a book in a library that appeared to be arguing that nazism had its roots in Russia. I did not examine the book in detail but I think the title was "The Russian Roots of Nazism" or something like that.

The Russian Roots of Nazism
White Émigrés and the Making of National Socialism, 1917–1945 (http://www.cambridge.org/us/catalogue/catalogue.asp?isbn=0521845122)

"This book examines the overlooked topic of the influence of anti-Bolshevik, anti-Semitic Russian exiles on Nazism. White émigrés contributed politically, financially, militarily, and ideologically to National Socialism. This work refutes the notion that Nazism developed as a peculiarly German phenomenon: it arose primarily from the cooperation between völkisch (nationalist/racist) Germans and vengeful White émigrés. From 1920–1923, Adolf Hitler collaborated with a conspiratorial far right German-White émigré organization, Aufbau (Reconstruction). Aufbau allied with Nazis to overthrow the German government and Bolshevik rule through terrorism and military-paramilitary schemes. This organization’s warnings of the monstrous ‘Jewish Bolshevik’ peril helped to inspire Hitler to launch an invasion of the Soviet Union and to initiate the mass murder of European Jews. This book uses extensive archival materials from Germany and Russia, including recently declassified documents, and will prove invaluable reading for anyone interested in the international roots of National Socialism."


Funny, as I in my turn saw a book "English roots of German Fascism".
:)

Chevan
01-13-2009, 04:08 AM
Funny, as I in my turn saw a book "English roots of German Fascism".
:)
He he he
I think the Author the same:)
Funny enough , but this is well know fact that the Root of Ethnical extremism/racis/nacism is coming fromm...Bible, Old Testament.
Where from the is Hiler getting crazy idea about "chosen Nation" ?

Rising Sun*
01-13-2009, 05:13 AM
I don't see what the roots of Nazism have to do with post-war Japanese revisionism, but Michael Kellogg expands on his thesis here and I think it's worth reading. http://www.sscnet.ucla.edu/soc/groups/scr/kellogg.pdf

Views about Jewish influences in Russian and Soviet developments are a continuing theme in, both reputable and disreputable, analyses of Russian revolutionary history and subsequent developments, and quite reasonably so.

Kellogg's views might be intrepreted as emigres hostile to the post-revolutionary Russian developments being willing to encourage and align themselves with anyone who would help them strike at the Jewish cabal they saw as the cause of their dispossession and emigration, which combined with emerging German Nazi ideology to result in the German Nazis assault on both Jews and Russians during the Nazi ascendancy.

It is entirely consistent with the actions of dispossessed emigre groups in host nations that they they try to manipulate the host nation to achieve the results they failed to achieve before they were forced to leave their home country, such as Cubans in America who have a political influence in Florida and the nation out of all proportion to their and Cuba's (in)significance to America nowadays.

Kellogg's analysis raises the possibility that disaffected Russians contributed to the Nazi depredations in the USSR, in pursuit of the emigres' ambitions to regain power in Russia. Again, that is a reasonable thesis in the history of emigre movements.

I think Kellogg's views are worth discussing, in a calm and rational manner. If others agree, I'll separate the relevant posts into a new thread.

Chevan
01-13-2009, 05:25 AM
Kellogg's analysis raises the possibility that disaffected Russians contributed to the Nazi depredations in the USSR, in pursuit of the emigres' ambitions to regain power in Russia. Again, that is a reasonable thesis in the history of emigre movements.
.
Actualy yes if to separate the Emigrant Movement from Nazis Colloborators&Criminals( some of them as we know have escaped in West after the war).
I think you shall to know that the Real Russian Emigrants like (General Anton Denikin
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anton_Ivanovich_Denikin ) has comdemned the Russian-Nacis colloborationism.

Cojimar 1945
01-16-2009, 11:34 PM
If the Japanese felt rejected by the west after the first world war, I would be interested in knowing if this also held true for Germany. Does anyone have any thoughts on relations between Japan and Germany prior to the anti-comintern pact? I have read that the Japanese modeled themselves after Germany but they were enemies during the 1914-18 war which could be percieved as suggesting a lack of affection.

Rising Sun*
01-17-2009, 02:02 AM
If the Japanese felt rejected by the west after the first world war, I would be interested in knowing if this also held true for Germany. Does anyone have any thoughts on relations between Japan and Germany prior to the anti-comintern pact? I have read that the Japanese modeled themselves after Germany but they were enemies during the 1914-18 war which could be percieved as suggesting a lack of affection.

Japan was an Ally during WWI.

Its main contribution was naval forces in the Pacific and Indian oceans. This was significant as it allowed Britain to leave those areas largely to Japan, releasing British forces for the European theatre.

Japan was a major party at the Versailles negotiations and later acquired various German possessions such as the Marianas as a consequence of its WWI status, which would have great significance in the battles to conquer Japan in WWII.

Although they were on opposing sides during WWI I don't think there was any deeper enmity between them, while as far as I know Japan didn't commit ground troops to Europe so that would have avoided the bitterness which could occur from the sort of losses the other Allies suffered there.

Byron
01-19-2009, 04:31 PM
True, some people in Russian were developing the Natism theory, but this EVil ( as other Evil- Communism) has come to Russia from the West....

It can be stated that neither Nazi nor Communist ideas flourished solely in any single country but the fact remains that they took root in Germany and Russia. That, of course, doesn't mean every German was a Nazi or that every Russian was a communist. Only that their governments came to power under those ideoligies.


but this is well know fact that the Root of Ethnical extremism/racis/nacism is coming fromm...Bible, Old Testament

Ok, this is utter garbage and betrays a lack of understanding of the Old Testament. Avoiding any religious theme here, there were any number of ancient empires and cultures who considered themselves (in an ethnical sense) better than other empires around them. Nazism is not the first "ideology" to misuse and misinterpret the Bible.

Chevan
01-20-2009, 08:05 AM
It can be stated that neither Nazi nor Communist ideas flourished solely in any single country but the fact remains that they took root in Germany and Russia.

The communism has no deels to Russia at all.
The what was in Russia was called as Bolshevism and later..Socialism.it was far from Theoretical Communism of Marx.
the Communist ideas firsly have been applied on practice in ..France
During short time of Paris Commune
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paris_Commune
But it was brutally pacified.


Ok, this is utter garbage and betrays a lack of understanding of the Old Testament.

Yeah , where is there the lack of understanding of simular sentences?


the Old Testament book
Numbers 33:51-56 states:

"51 Speak unto the YOUR children , and say unto them, When ye are passed over Jordan into the land of Canaan;

52 Then ye shall drive out all the inhabitants of the land from before you, and destroy all their pictures, and destroy all their molten images, and quite pluck down all their high places:

53 And ye shall dispossess the inhabitants of the land, and dwell therein: for I have given you the land to possess it.

54 And ye shall divide the land by lot for an inheritance among your families: and to the more ye shall give the more inheritance, and to the fewer ye shall give the less inheritance: every man's inheritance shall be in the place where his lot falleth; according to the tribes of your fathers ye shall inherit.

55 But if ye will not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you; then it shall come to pass, that those which ye let remain of them shall be *****s in your eyes, and thorns in your sides, and shall vex you in the land wherein ye dwell.

56 Moreover it shall come to pass, that I shall do unto you, as I thought to do unto them."


The Hitler's racist hate "Main Kamf" looks like the childish play on sand compared to Old Testament.

Byron
01-20-2009, 12:49 PM
The communism has no deels to Russia at all.
The what was in Russia was called as Bolshevism and later..Socialism.it was far from Theoretical Communism of Marx.
the Communist ideas firsly have been applied on practice in ..France

Never the less, they took root in Russia. To say communism in Russia wasn't the same as it was in France or elsewhere is missing the point. The point is that it was there--the ideas were applied in that country in a standardized form. Whether it was the "theoretical communism of Marx" is not the issue. If you like, you can call it a "branch" of that thought.


The Hitler's racist hate "Main Kamf" looks like the childish play on sand compared to Old Testament.

Again, moving into a religious argument. You're ignoring the fact that ethnic "supremist" thought was evident in a variety of cultures during and after the time of the Old Testament--and you're trying to limit it to a single religion/people.

You also ignore the central thrust of the Bible--it is a record of God's relationship with humanity (which encompasses everything from judgement to grace and more). To compare Hitler's racism with God's judgement is like saying "one person was attacked with a knife and one person was attacked with a gun"--you're ignoring the context of the actions entirely. However, if we're going to go down this road, it is best done off forum as this is definitely getting into the meaning of "relationship with God".

Chevan
01-21-2009, 12:52 AM
Never the less, they took root in Russia. To say communism in Russia wasn't the same as it was in France or elsewhere is missing the point. The point is that it was there--the ideas were applied in that country in a standardized form. Whether it was the "theoretical communism of Marx" is not the issue. If you like, you can call it a "branch" of that thought.

I tell you again, that Order that Boslhevics have REALLY realized in Russian was FAR from Communism.
The communism was based on couple of ponits - World proletarian revolution( via Commintern supportion) and Working ruling state.
Both were pretty dumb in SOviet Russia- Workers were far from a power, wolrd proletarian revolution was denied at all (Instead USSR start to trade with West, Commintern have been dismissed).
The Communism was fully developed in Western Europe , Russia was ONLY the state in Europe where the authorities were such a weak in 1917 to let tocupture the power by Bolshevicks.
BTW they were the rather International Group( some of them even didn't speak russian) they has got the finantial suppor outside ( Germany, America and ets)




Again, moving into a religious argument. You're ignoring the fact that ethnic "supremist" thought was evident in a variety of cultures during and after the time of the Old Testament--and you're trying to limit it to a single religion/people.

I don't deny the violence and cruelty of cultures during and after the time of Old testament.
Nor is trying to limit the Racial propogand byt ONLY the single religion.It's sensless.
My point, if you enough attentively wrote my post, was NOT about mankind's religions/culture humanity at all.
I just notice, that We own an excellent Ancient DOCUMENTAL source Race hate propogand, Ethnical extremism and animal cruelty on pages of ..Old Testament.( i may show you more statements from this book, if you wish)
The othe matter is to argue - was it good or wrong, better or worse.
It doesn't mean that it was ONLY the religion source of that Evil, but , defenitelly it was ONE among first.
That make wrong arguments kinda "Russian/German/somebodyelse roots of Racism/Fascism".
Everything was WELL developed BEFOR us.:)


You also ignore the central thrust of the Bible--it is a record of God's relationship with humanity (which encompasses everything from judgement to grace and more). To compare Hitler's racism with God's judgement is like saying "one person was attacked with a knife and one person was attacked with a gun"--you're ignoring the context of the actions entirely. However, if we're going to go down this road, it is best done off forum as this is definitely getting into the meaning of "relationship with God".
The First "God's relationship with humanity" has come from Jesus Christ and his pupils , buddy.
This is the matter of New Testament.
If you don't know such a thing - how may you to argue?
I specially didn't touch the Christianity, but i done it.
So the whole Christianily is based on New Tastement- all of Great ideas of Mankind's love and Humanity, Compassion and Forgiveness, to all mans as God's sons has come from.... Jesus.
It's a well known fact.
The Old Tastement ignored such a high ideas- that's my point.

Byron
01-21-2009, 01:50 PM
I tell you again, that Order that Boslhevics have REALLY realized in Russian was FAR from Communism.

Then we are simply debating the form that communism took in Russia. I'm not restricting communism to the "pure" definition you are. I don't have a problem with the limitation you are using. We're approaching the question from different angles.


It doesn't mean that it was ONLY the religion source of that Evil, but , defenitelly it was ONE among first.

I spoke of ancient cultures, not religions.


I just notice, that We own an excellent Ancient DOCUMENTAL source Race hate propogand, Ethnical extremism and animal cruelty on pages of ..Old Testament.( i may show you more statements from this book, if you wish)


I deny that the Old Testament is a source of "Race hate propogand(a)" at all. I am aware of the records of war and human and animal deaths in the OT. You're ignoring the context of these actions and the relational priority of God to humanity that is reflected throughout the Bible as a whole (both OT and NT).


The Old Tastement ignored such a high ideas- that's my point.

The Old Testament and New Testament are of the same cloth. Even Jesus stated He was not here to do away with the Law but to fulfill it. The Old Testament does not ignore the "high ideas" you list at all. But the ideas in question are centered around God's Will (and have no validity outside of God's Will) in both the Old and New Testaments.

royal744
12-22-2009, 05:16 PM
Do people find it odd that the Japanese would suddenly become far more brutal than they had been before? What caused this? The idea that entire nations would suddenly turn evil seems far fetched but it seems that one could make a case that this is what happened in Germany and Japan. Do people have any theories as to what caused Germany and Japan to turn to the dark side?

It would be interesting to know if the axis leaders gave any signs of turning evil back during WWI that could have foreshadowed their later villainy.

One supposes that if one feels and truly believes that one is superior to others and that inferiors shouldn't have a place at the table, then it is not such a far step to dismissing them, jailing them, torturing them and finally murdering them. The Germans had their "Ubermenschen" and the Japanese had the "Yamato Nation". In either case, what they did to those who opposed them was utterly, completely despicable and unacceptable. The Germans appear to have come to terms with this. The Japanese have not. Watch out for the Japanese.

Deaf Smith
12-22-2009, 07:07 PM
One supposes that if one feels and truly believes that one is superior to others and that inferiors shouldn't have a place at the table, then it is not such a far step to dismissing them, jailing them, torturing them and finally murdering them. The Germans had their "Ubermenschen" and the Japanese had the "Yamato Nation". In either case, what they did to those who opposed them was utterly, completely despicable and unacceptable. The Germans appear to have come to terms with this. The Japanese have not. Watch out for the Japanese.

True.

True for any nation that thinks that way. I'm really afraid the Muslims think that way, and far more than the Japanese ever did.

And as from the film, "Cross of Iron",

"Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the bitch that bore him is in heat again."

And I truly hope not. I really do. Cause weapons nowdays are far more fearsom than we ever had in WW2.

Deaf

royal744
12-22-2009, 10:27 PM
"...where the absolute majority of inhabitans belongs to the single Ethnical group."

Actually, Chevan, the absolute majority in Israel may be Arab.

royal744
12-22-2009, 10:35 PM
"Quote:
Originally Posted by Chevan View Post

OK , its clear , all world's evil come from ..ducth who have bought all the bikes for their grass that they smoke all the time.Obviously they have started the ww2, make Commintern to order to red army to steal all the European bikes.And made Japane suckered into China.
The Japane is a victim of Commintern, that BTW has been established and worked in the Soviet Russia since 1917, alongside Zionists.
So the only question that we shall discuss , according General Toshio Tamogami concepts of history, is why did dastard Comminter order to American gov to start to bomb the Japane, that obviously was innocent , and has been provoked by the Commintern , placed in Russia
Mate, haven't you been listening to the Western press?

Russia (previously the USSR although most commentators couldn't tell the difference) is the greatest threat to world peace, as demonstrated by some of its military aggression where it fielded huge forces in conflicts such as the Vietnam War; Gulf War I; and Gulf War II, where Russia / the USSR went way beyond its borders while the West stayed home in its usual peaceful fashion."
__________________
The Comintern is coming over for cake and cookies on Friday, to be followed by a game of "Go Fish"; then a dip in the pool. After all, this Texas and a barbecue will round out the evening accompanied by the nasal strains of plaintiff Country 'n Western music and, of course, square dancing.

royal744
12-22-2009, 10:46 PM
Let's sum up Japan's approach to warfare: 0) always start with a surprise attack against a hapless, unprepared enemy who is at peace; 1) never surrender even when all is lost; 2) always win because a Japanese is not allowed to lose; 3) if losing is inevitable, the only course remaining is to die fighting because to do otherwise would be to live with the SHAME which dishonors not only oneself, but also all of your relations. If your whole country is defeated, wait a decent interval before sneakily revising the history books. Oh, and issue comic books that cast the Yamato Race as the victim instead of the murdering, torturing rapist it is. The "comic books" night be called "real Japanese history books".

Chevan
12-22-2009, 11:46 PM
Oh gentlemens, what was a sense to pick up the old thread, but though.


"...where the absolute majority of inhabitans belongs to the single Ethnical group."

Actually, Chevan, the absolute majority in Israel may be Arab.
.
yes sir , it may be ....soon
Not yet.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_Israel#Jews
82,8% of that countrly belongs to major ethnical group.Israel is one of the purest mono-Ethnical populated state of the world.And Official policy of state actively support that supeority.
But you right , actualy the birdh rate of arabes in Israel is sensitively higher then the jewish

Chevan
12-22-2009, 11:54 PM
Let's sum up Japan's approach to warfare: 0) always start with a surprise attack against a hapless, unprepared enemy who is at peace; .
Yeah , and they 0-a) very pissed if somebody else make them surprise attack when they are hopeless itself (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_August_Storm).
:)

Rising Sun*
03-08-2010, 07:16 AM
Here's something I didn't know and which puts an entirely different perspective on the revisionism / education issues.

I'm reading Rosalind Hearder's "Keep the Men Alive: Australian POW Doctors in Japanese Captivity", Allen & Unwin, Sydney, 2009 where at pp. 121-2 she notes that in the first few years after 1945 Japanese textbooks clearly stated Japan's responsibility for the conflict and criticised the militarists for taking them to war. She says that this was a time of free discourse in government and academic circles with a national desire to face the realities of war and to begin the slow physical and psychological process of reconstruction of the nation.

This changed during the 1950s and was cemented when Nobusuke Kishi, a civilian war criminal who ran Manchukuo's economy before the war and who was pretty much Japan's equivalent to Albert Speer in Germany during the war, became Prime Minister from 1957 to 1960 and that he 'legitimised a great deal of wartime practices and marked the the beginning of the distortion of some of the wartime atrocities'. (Hearder cites a couple of references for her views, which I'll post if anyone wants them.)

This brings me back to MacArthur putting the war criminals and the bureacracy which supported them before and during the war back in charge in Japan.

Hindsight is a wonderful thing, but it couldn't have taken too much foresight to realise that putting the foxes back in charge of the chicken coop and giving them power to write the history of the foxes' alleged attacks on the chicken coop wasn't going to produce a book unfavourable to the foxes.

Deaf Smith
03-08-2010, 09:18 PM
Well you see the difference on how we handled Germany's defeat and crimes .vs. Japans.

And you see the results. Germany owned up to what they did, Japan didn't.

Lessons to learn for the NEXT world war:

1. Fight to win, AND WIN. Totally and unconditionally. Unconditional surrender was the right policy. We see how well ‘truces’ worked since then in Korea (we technically are still at war with North Korea) and Vietnam (they waited till we left and then ran them over.)

2. Root out all those involved with running the government/military of the defeated country and strip them off all power. 'De-Nazification' as it was called in Germany. No compromising at this.

3. If there are any war criminals. Try those who did atrocities. Nuremburg was the right answer.

4. Do whatever you can to help them rebuild and do not saddle them with an impossible debt that cannot be repaid without bankrupting the country (or else you sow the seeds for another war.)

Deaf

kurt
07-23-2010, 11:33 AM
Let's face it his ideas and thoughts about Japan's involvement in WW 2 are shared by many other Japanese, as scary as that seems.
Just compare it to how Germany or Italy feels about their part in WW 2,and for the most part its a whole lot more realistic.
IMHO Japan got off way too easy on their war crimes and that has led to the what alot of them feel about their actions in WW 2.

In an Australian "World Socialist Web Site" I found a very interesting article about WWII in general and regarding the Pacific War there is a quite different point of view about the background of that war, I'm aware this is a leftist source and I don't share many of their opinions, but they talk about an Orange Plan devised in the US to wage war against Japan, at least for me, this is completely new:

Plans for a war against Japan were under active consideration in the US long before Pearl Harbour. In March 1939, the US Navy distributed a revision to its war plan called Basic War Plan ORANGE. Orange stood for Japan. According to the plan, war with ORANGE would be “precipitated without notice” and would be an offensive war of “long duration”. The aim of the war plan was “to impose the will of the United States upon ORANGE by destroying ORANGE Armed Forces and by disrupting ORANGE economic life, while protecting American interests at home and abroad.” [3]

In September 1940, the American naval attaché in Tokyo sent a report to Washington about the state of Japanese cities. “Hoses are old, worn and leaky,” he wrote, “water mains are shut off at night. Little pressure is available. Fire hydrants are few and far between. … Incendiary bombs sowed widely over an area of Japanese cities would result in the destruction of major portions of those cities.” [4] This advice was put into deadly effect in March 1945 with the firebombing of Tokyo. More than 100,000 people are estimated to have died in the ensuing firestorm; more than the immediate deaths resulting from the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
http://www.wsws.org/articles/2009/nov2009/nbww-n18.shtml

Rising Sun*
07-23-2010, 12:05 PM
but they talk about an Orange Plan devised in the US to wage war against Japan, at least for me, this is completely new

1. Everyone with modest knowledge of WWII knows about Orange and its variants, which have been discussed at length on this site.

2. Orange was a defensive response to an anticipated attack by Japan.

3. Japan attacked and started the war.

4. Your attempts at trolling are patent and tiresome.

kurt
07-23-2010, 12:57 PM
I'm sorry for my modest knowledge of WWII, I'm trying to improve it, in doing so, I found this interesting information too:

Until 1939, the US government followed a pattern of conflicting policies regarding China and Japan. Committed on the one hand to an Open Door Policy toward China, the US conversely recognized in 1908 and again in 1917 that Japan had special rights and interest in eastern Asia because of its "territorial propinquity." The Lansing-Ishii Agreement of 1917, in fact, specifically recognized Japan's special position in Manchuria and on the Shantung Peninsula. Moreover, until 1941 the US consistently supplied Japan with the war materials necessary to undertake and sustain operations not only against China but against the Netherlands and France as well. At the same time, the United States maintained a naval rivalry with Japan which, because of various factors, had already begun to tilt in Japan's favor following the end of World War I

http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/ops/war-plan-orange.htm

Since I presume you are from Australia I was looking for an opinion about WSWS as a credible source. But it looks like if anything that disturb your opinion is regarded as "trolling".

tankgeezer
07-23-2010, 01:43 PM
It may be Kurt that the "information" you post is interesting only to you, and has been gleaned from a stilted, agenda driven site. This worm boring from within stuff is getting old. You will find no useful idiots here.

Tenshinai
10-30-2010, 12:17 PM
If Japan wasn't the aggressor in WWII, I'd hate to see what would have happened if it was.

By 1941, USA, UK and Netherlands had been actively conducting economic warfare against Japan for 7 years, via the oil companies of their respective nations.
You can find a little, simplified part of it here:
.questia.com/googleScholar.qst;jsessionid=4A0C2A6213D3528A0BB07 E7B79C71B07.inst1_1a?docId=97732439
cut from a 1975 paper by Thomas Breslin(and i wasnt allowed to post a link so add a www to the above and hope it works). It doesnt give the full picture but even it, based on the papertrail from official sources in USAs govt(which became declassified shortly before the article), is plenty enough to give Japan a casus belli.

If the situation was the opposite, USA most certainly would have considered it a casus belli. And historically, USA have started wars for much less serious economical or other sorts of indirect warfare.

And while Japan certainly isnt exactly the best at accepting its past, the attitude tends to be far more of a "-lets not bury us under such a long past dishonorable past, but instead look towards a better future" rather than attempts at actually falsifying anything. And really, 2 generations after the war, is it really something that the younger Japanese today have anything what so ever to do with?

If so, then americans today are still also responsible for anything from civillian deaths in Iraq, the now commonly used practise of torture via the creation of dictatures in Vietnam or Nicaragua to the forced annexation of Hawaii and the wars of conquest against Spain or Mexico.

Why is it that according to you, generational guilt is applicable to Japan but not to USA?



And BTW, the Pacific war wasnt really the same as the European one, it just happened to be very convenient for Japan to fight it while USA/UK et al were distracted, making the axis pact advantageous but without much real or direct political or ideological closeness with Germany or Italy, even if overlapping.



3. If there are any war criminals. Try those who did atrocities. Nuremburg was the right answer.
Ah yes, you mean like the Japanese general who was convicted for crimes comitted in his area of command, against his specific orders while he wasnt there? Are you under the delusion that there were no "war criminals" judged among the Japanese? The "funny" thing is that some of the worst actual Japanese war criminals avoided punishment completely because they were too valuable scientifically or USA, while a whole bunch of higher commanders, some even with almost spotless records were put on trial and convicted of makebelieve crimes, or of crimes they had little or nothing to do with.

And Nuremburg was almost a joke. Oh some of the convictions were certainly very well earned and even properly handled in a legal sense, but all too much was an exercise in making sure there were properly EVIL scapegoats handy.

Wizard
10-30-2010, 08:04 PM
By 1941, USA, UK and Netherlands had been actively conducting economic warfare against Japan for 7 years, via the oil companies of their respective nations.
You can find a little, simplified part of it here:
.questia.com/googleScholar.qst;jsessionid=4A0C2A6213D3528A0BB07 E7B79C71B07.inst1_1a?docId=97732439
cut from a 1975 paper by Thomas Breslin(and i wasnt allowed to post a link so add a www to the above and hope it works). It doesnt give the full picture but even it, based on the papertrail from official sources in USAs govt(which became declassified shortly before the article), is plenty enough to give Japan a casus belli.

If the situation was the opposite, USA most certainly would have considered it a casus belli. And historically, USA have started wars for much less serious economical or other sorts of indirect warfare.

First of all, I think it would be useful if you defined just what you mean by "economic warfare". Raising tariffs to protect one's own industries was quite common in the 1930's and does not, by any stretch of the imagination, constitute "economic warfare". Britain organized the Commonwealth countries into a closed trading bloc in the early 1930's, but this was not directed at Japan, and did not constitute "economic warfare" against Japan.

The Netherlands East Indies (NEI) were selling oil products to Japan until Japan signed the Tripartite Pact in September, 1940, thus becoming an ally of Nazi Germany, the same Nazi Germany which had ignored Holland's neutrality and occupied the Home country of the NEI. Thereafter, the NEI authorities refused to sell oil to any ally of Germany on the grounds that it might be resold to the occupier of it's Home country. This certainly was prudent, but again, did not constitute "economic warfare" against Japan.

Until 1940, the US and Japan had a trade treaty which essentially granted Japan "most favored nation" status. However, Japan had, since 1931, consistently engaged in acts of military aggression which not only threatened peace in the Asian region, but US commercial and security interests in the area. Under these circumstances the US could not justify extending the treaty beyond it's original expiration date, although the Roosevelt administration agreed to continue observing the treaty provisions on an interim basis, contingent on Japan's not engaging in acts hostile to US interests.

Japan however, continued it's military aggression against several countries in the region and occupied territories belonging to other counties. In July, 1940, Japan occupied southern Indochina and established airfields which put it's aircraft within striking range of Malaya, Singapore, Borneo, and the NEI. The US had intercepted and decrypted Japanese messages which revealed that this step was preparatory to conducting a surprise military offensive against these areas, as well as, the Philippines. This was not only an act of war, but a violation of international law.

The Roosevelt administration had, in 1940, embargoed certain items which were considered war materials because Japan was using these materials to pursue aggressive war against other nations. In July, 1941, Roosevelt, in response to Japan's occupation of southern Indochina, froze Japanese assets in the US; Britain and the Netherlands followed suit. This prevented almost all trade between these countries and Japan, but did NOT constitute "economic warfare". No nation can be expected to continue trading with a country which is hostile to it's interests, especially when such trade facilitates that hostility. This is just plain common sense. Accusations of "economic warfare" against Japan since 1934 are nonsense and ignore the salient facts of the matter.


And while Japan certainly isnt exactly the best at accepting its past, the attitude tends to be far more of a "-lets not bury us under such a long past dishonorable past, but instead look towards a better future" rather than attempts at actually falsifying anything. And really, 2 generations after the war, is it really something that the younger Japanese today have anything what so ever to do with?

That's understatement to the point of deception.

Japan has never acknowledged it's responsibility for the Pacific war and the millions of people it murdered in it's campaign of national aggrandizement. Until it does, there is no point in looking to the future or pretending that such events did not take place. It is a crime, on top of their original crimes, to let two generations pass without such an acknowledgment. It is up to the present generation of Japanese to rectify this situation as they are the only ones who can do so; they are the ones who will continue to suffer the approbation of the rest of the world if they neglect this duty.


If so, then americans today are still also responsible for anything from civillian deaths in Iraq, the now commonly used practise of torture via the creation of dictatures in Vietnam or Nicaragua to the forced annexation of Hawaii and the wars of conquest against Spain or Mexico.

If you really want to raise these matters, I suggest you start a thread in the Off Topic forum. These matters have nothing whatsoever to do with WW II or the Japanese responsibility for the war.


And BTW, the Pacific war wasnt really the same as the European one, it just happened to be very convenient for Japan to fight it while USA/UK et al were distracted, making the axis pact advantageous but without much real or direct political or ideological closeness with Germany or Italy, even if overlapping.

There is some truth in this statement, however, the Japanese themselves saw fit to establish an alliance with Nazi Germany which for better or worse, caused Germany and Italy to declare war on the US and forever linked the European and Pacific wars in the minds of Americans.


Ah yes, you mean like the Japanese general who was convicted for crimes comitted in his area of command, against his specific orders while he wasnt there?

Which Japanese general might that be? Is there some reason you can't be more specific and name him?


Are you under the delusion that there were no "war criminals" judged among the Japanese? The "funny" thing is that some of the worst actual Japanese war criminals avoided punishment completely because they were too valuable scientifically or USA, while a whole bunch of higher commanders, some even with almost spotless records were put on trial and convicted of makebelieve crimes, or of crimes they had little or nothing to do with.

While it is true that some Japanese escaped justice due to "plea bargains" with US authorities, the majority were punished in accordance with international law. Again, if you wish to have your points taken seriously, please name those Japanese with "spotless records" who were tried and "convicted of make believe" crimes, or who were convicted of crimes with which they had nothing to do.

Rising Sun*
10-30-2010, 08:36 PM
Which Japanese general might that be? Is there some reason you can't be more specific and name him?

Probably General Yamashita, found guilty on the basis of command responsibility rather than as an actor in war crimes.

Wizard
10-30-2010, 08:45 PM
Probably General Yamashita, found guilty on the basis of command responsibility rather than as an actor in war crimes.

Yes, I thought Yamashita might be the one Tenshinai was referring to, but I didn't want to jump to a premature conclusion in case he had another example in mind.

Nickdfresh
10-30-2010, 10:37 PM
By 1941, USA, UK and Netherlands had been actively conducting economic warfare against Japan for 7 years, via the oil companies of their respective nations.
You can find a little, simplified part of it here....

Poor poor Japan. If only they could have committed genocide against the Chinese with impunity!

Tenshinai
10-30-2010, 10:58 PM
First of all, I think it would be useful if you defined just what you mean by "economic warfare". Raising tariffs to protect one's own industries was quite common in the 1930's and does not, by any stretch of the imagination, constitute "economic warfare". Britain organized the Commonwealth countries into a closed trading bloc in the early 1930's, but this was not directed at Japan, and did not constitute "economic warfare" against Japan.

Using commercial and to a lesser degree political means to essentially place an embargo on important raw materials against Japan is what it means.
It never became a total embargo, but its one of the main reasons Japan had such extreme difficulty in getting access to vital alloy metals. Which is for example one of the reasons for using the very strange metal they used for building Zero´s with. Sure it wasnt really bad, as its crystallisation over time was something nobody expected to need dealing with, but the material was NOT good.

You could have started by reading the link i tried to provide(but couldnt give fully due to the forum not allowing me).


The Netherlands East Indies (NEI) were selling oil products to Japan until Japan signed the Tripartite Pact in September, 1940, thus becoming an ally of Nazi Germany, the same Nazi Germany which had ignored Holland's neutrality and occupied the Home country of the NEI. Thereafter, the NEI authorities refused to sell oil to any ally of Germany on the grounds that it might be resold to the occupier of it's Home country. This certainly was prudent, but again, did not constitute "economic warfare" against Japan.
They were not selling freely, not at regular price and they did it because at this time NEI didnt have any other means to survive.
From 1934 up until Holland falling, things were a bit less "happy" concerning NEIs relationship with Japan.


Until 1940, the US and Japan had a trade treaty which essentially granted Japan "most favored nation" status. However, Japan had, since 1931, consistently engaged in acts of military aggression which not only threatened peace in the Asian region, but US commercial and security interests in the area. Under these circumstances the US could not justify extending the treaty beyond it's original expiration date, although the Roosevelt administration agreed to continue observing the treaty provisions on an interim basis, contingent on Japan's not engaging in acts hostile to US interests.
Thats oversimplified and not exactly descriptive of the situation.

USA sold large amounts of iron and steel scrap to Japan, along with oil at a very happy price(for those selling it that is). Why do you think it was totally impossible for Japan to also purchase alloy metals? Or advanced machine tools? "Most favoured nation"? Yeah sure, if that means that you´re only selling scrap iron and low tech crap then sure, thats very favoured indeed.

Sorry but its a total myth that USA was a nice little choir boy taking a punch in the face by the evil empire.



Japan however, continued it's military aggression against several countries in the region and occupied territories belonging to other counties.
Like USA, France, Germany, Portugal, Spain, Holland and UK had been doing there over the last few hundred years you mean?
Dont make me laugh.

Japan was certainly nastier about it sometimes but not really much difference beyond Japan fighting enemies closer to themselves in equipment and organisation.


The US had intercepted and decrypted Japanese messages which revealed that this step was preparatory to conducting a surprise military offensive against these areas, as well as, the Philippines. This was not only an act of war, but a violation of international law.
Thats complete rubbish actually.
First of all, intercepting another nations message saying something doesnt mean anything at all until you can actually prove that its for real, otherwise USA during the cold war started a few dozen attacks on USSR, by your standards.
Second, exactly what sort of international law are you referring to? :mrgreen:
Japan was at the time not as far as i can recall party to any agreement saying it was forbidden to start a war.
And no, membership in the League of Nations doesnt mean that either.


The Roosevelt administration had, in 1940, embargoed certain items which were considered war materials because Japan was using these materials to pursue aggressive war against other nations. In July, 1941, Roosevelt, in response to Japan's occupation of southern Indochina, froze Japanese assets in the US; Britain and the Netherlands followed suit.
Yeah, changing a policy of "we will sell you 1/10 of what you need at twice the normal price markup" into not selling at all.
AND not to forget, "freezing" bank accounts. Effectively taking the money to pay for USAs military buildup funny enough.


Accusations of "economic warfare" against Japan since 1934 are nonsense and ignore the salient facts of the matter.
Maybe you should have read the source material i provided before you make a fool of yourself?
Coercing nations and companies not to trade with Japan, not selling them machine tools, not selling them alloy metals etc etc...
Oh yes, if thats pointed against USA, USA would certainly call it economic warfare.



Japan has never acknowledged it's responsibility for the Pacific war and the millions of people it murdered in it's campaign of national aggrandizement.
Thats strange, i could swear i´ve heard words to that effect from at least 3 different Japanese prime ministers... Oh wait, "responsibility"? Right...


Until it does, there is no point in looking to the future or pretending that such events did not take place. It is a crime, on top of their original crimes, to let two generations pass without such an acknowledgment. It is up to the present generation of Japanese to rectify this situation as they are the only ones who can do so; they are the ones who will continue to suffer the approbation of the rest of the world if they neglect this duty.
So, when will USA aknowledge its genocide against the american natives?
Or its terrorist acitivities in Central America? Propping up brutal dictators in central and south America, middle east and Africa...
How about the Hawaii coup? Starting aggressive wars with Spain and Mexico?

Yeah, because you´ve got nothing to do with those do you?
Oh right, according to YOU, you´re responsible for it.
According to me, you pretty much dont.


These matters have nothing whatsoever to do with WW II or the Japanese responsibility for the war.
Your statements makes them relevant. But of course, its so much easier to stick with one standard for YOU and another standard for everyone else.


There is some truth in this statement, however, the Japanese themselves saw fit to establish an alliance with Nazi Germany which for better or worse, caused Germany and Italy to declare war on the US and forever linked the European and Pacific wars in the minds of Americans.
What someone believe doesnt change the truth.


Which Japanese general might that be? Is there some reason you can't be more specific and name him?
Yeah i can probably find the name again but certainly not tonight, i should already be asleep hours ago.
After a short little recap reading, no it wasnt Yamashita i meant, although his trial was totally ridiculous as well. Kangaroo courts, oh how we love thee?
I dont recall the name but i dont think the one i meant got executed, just jailed.


While it is true that some Japanese escaped justice due to "plea bargains" with US authorities, the majority were punished in accordance with international law.
Again, please do specify what "international law" you´re referring to.
Also, what i referred to was not "plea bargains", at least not in any practical sense. Its a matter of how some high officers involved in chemical and biological warfare in China got swooped off to "debriefing rooms" and labs in USA instead of getting slammed for their crimes. And these people were the really nasty ones. Instead, kangaroo courts judge a bunch of officers that was anything from not guilty at all, to totally guilty but did so with near zero adherence to actual law. And you claimed there were no sentences at all...


Again, if you wish to have your points taken seriously, please name those Japanese with "spotless records" who were tried and "convicted of make believe" crimes, or who were convicted of crimes with which they had nothing to do.
Im not sure if there was anyone with "spotless record", and its not very nice of you of coming up with strawmen like that.
But unless i misrecall completely there was at least a few that had done nothing that the majority of allied generals had not also, who were sentenced for whatever the court wanted that day.

Tenshinai
10-30-2010, 11:00 PM
Poor poor Japan. If only they could have committed genocide against the Chinese with impunity!

Oh poor poor you... Go march with your strawman army if you cant at least come up with something relevant or real to be snide about.

Nickdfresh
10-30-2010, 11:15 PM
Oh poor poor you...

me?


Go march with your strawman army if you cant at least come up with something relevant or real to be snide about.


Are you comparing me with Falstaff? ****ing great of you! Only, what isn't relevant about China?

So, basically you're on record as saying the Chinese people are shit and deserve to be serfs to the Imperial Japanese throne?

Wizard
10-31-2010, 01:49 AM
Using commercial and to a lesser degree political means to essentially place an embargo on important raw materials against Japan is what it means.

So in your opinion a country is required to continue trading with an aggressor nation even though those materials are being used to prosecute a war of aggression against a third nation, and that activity is contrary to the exporting nation's vital interests, otherwise it constitutes economic warfare? That's an interesting position, can you cite any international law which supports such a concept?


It never became a total embargo, but its one of the main reasons Japan had such extreme difficulty in getting access to vital alloy metals. Which is for example one of the reasons for using the very strange metal they used for building Zero´s with. Sure it wasnt really bad, as its crystallisation over time was something nobody expected to need dealing with, but the material was NOT good.

Could you cite some authority? I've read the Japanese were just not very good with aluminum alloys. Besides the Zero was designed in 1938, and first flew in April, 1939, long before Japan got itself embargoed for being the big bully on the block.


You could have started by reading the link i tried to provide(but couldnt give fully due to the forum not allowing me).

I tried but couldn't get to work for me. You should be able to post working links now.


They were not selling freely, not at regular price and they did it because at this time NEI didnt have any other means to survive.
From 1934 up until Holland falling, things were a bit less "happy" concerning NEIs relationship with Japan.

I really don't know what price the NEI was charging Japan for the oil it sold them, I think it was the regular market price, otherwise, until May, 1940, Japan could have gone elsewhere (as in Mexico or the mid-east) to buy their oil. Maybe you could cite some authority that references the price? And the NEI's relationship with Japan was normal from 1934 until 1940 unless you have some information that I'm not aware of. Japan had no one but itself for signing the Tripartite Pact which essentially made them allies of Germany which was occupying Holland. No wonder the NEI wouldn't sell to them after May, 1940.



Thats oversimplified and not exactly descriptive of the situation.

USA sold large amounts of iron and steel scrap to Japan, along with oil at a very happy price(for those selling it that is). Why do you think it was totally impossible for Japan to also purchase alloy metals? Or advanced machine tools? "Most favoured nation"? Yeah sure, if that means that you´re only selling scrap iron and low tech crap then sure, thats very favoured indeed.

Sorry but its a total myth that USA was a nice little choir boy taking a punch in the face by the evil empire.

Well, you've posted information that conflicts with every history book I've ever read, so please cite your authorities for it.

If Japan didn't like the prices it was getting from the US, why didn't they find another seller, or was the US supposed to donate the materials to Japan?

My understanding is Japan bought machine tools from the US, as well as Germany, and Britain up until the time their assets were frozen. And they were buying alloys from Southeast Asia, just as the US was. See "D-Days In The Pacific" by Donald L. Miller, page 6.

No one is claiming the US was a "choir boy", but neither was Japan, and there is nothing in international law, nor any treaty, nor even any ethical stance that requires one country to continue trading in war materials with an aggressor nation that is using those materials to subjugate a third country.


Like USA, France, Germany, Portugal, Spain, Holland and UK had been doing there over the last few hundred years you mean?
Dont make me laugh.

Japan was certainly nastier about it sometimes but not really much difference beyond Japan fighting enemies closer to themselves in equipment and organisation.

The difference was that the US was trying to abolish empires and imperialism, especially the kind that stemmed from atrocities like Nanking. You are aware that in 1935, the US guaranteed it's only major colony complete independence in ten years?


Thats complete rubbish actually.
First of all, intercepting another nations message saying something doesnt mean anything at all until you can actually prove that its for real, otherwise USA during the cold war started a few dozen attacks on USSR, by your standards.
Second, exactly what sort of international law are you referring to? :mrgreen:
Japan was at the time not as far as i can recall party to any agreement saying it was forbidden to start a war.
And no, membership in the League of Nations doesnt mean that either.

No, it's not rubbish, it's an historical fact.

And no you don't need to prove that a countries intercepted messages are "real" in order to believe that they are planning an aggressive war. Japan's track record in that regard was enough. The international law I'm referring to was conducting aggressive war and commencing hostilities without a declaration of war. You must be ignorant of the fact that Japan was a signatory to the Kellog-Briand Pact which outlawed aggressive war. You really do need to tame your prejudices and do some research into historical fact.


Yeah, changing a policy of "we will sell you 1/10 of what you need at twice the normal price markup" into not selling at all.
AND not to forget, "freezing" bank accounts. Effectively taking the money to pay for USAs military buildup funny enough.

Well, more ignorance. The US was not gouging Japan on it's prices nor refusing to sell to Japan what it could. The trade treaty expired in 1940, and the US was no longer ethically, morally, or legally required to trade with Japan at all. And the freezing of assets when another country acts in a hostile manner is pretty standard. Nor did the US seize Japan's assets until it was attacked on December 7, 1941. Frozen assets are just that; frozen until some action is taken that leads to them being unfrozen, or in this case a war starts that leads to seizure. Jsapan seized all US assets in Japan even though they actually started the war.


Maybe you should have read the source material i provided before you make a fool of yourself?
Coercing nations and companies not to trade with Japan, not selling them machine tools, not selling them alloy metals etc etc...
Oh yes, if thats pointed against USA, USA would certainly call it economic warfare.

I doubt reading your source would have made any difference. Economic warfare does not include refusing to trade with a country that is acting in a manner inimical to a country's vital interests; it's just plain common sense. The US did not use force to coerce any other countries to refuse to trade with Japan. Japan voluntarily aligned itself with the Axis and suffered the economic consequences of that act.


Thats strange, i could swear i´ve heard words to that effect from at least 3 different Japanese prime ministers... Oh wait, "responsibility"? Right...

Could you possibly name them and maybe reference their specific words and when they uttered them?


So, when will USA aknowledge its genocide against the american natives?
Or its terrorist acitivities in Central America? Propping up brutal dictators in central and south America, middle east and Africa...
How about the Hawaii coup? Starting aggressive wars with Spain and Mexico?[/Quote}

As I indicated in another post on this thread, these matters have nothing to do with WW II or Japan's responsibility for that war. So if you want top discuss them, start a thread on the appropriate forum.

[QUOTE=Tenshinai;172479]What someone believe doesnt change the truth.

In this case perception is the reality.



Yeah i can probably find the name again but certainly not tonight, i should already be asleep hours ago.
After a short little recap reading, no it wasnt Yamashita i meant, although his trial was totally ridiculous as well. Kangaroo courts, oh how we love thee?
I dont recall the name but i dont think the one i meant got executed, just jailed.

Well, I can't address the issue unless I know just what you are talking about. For all I know, it might be another case of disinformation or ignorance of the real facts.


Again, please do specify what "international law" you´re referring to.

Conducting a war of aggression, mistreatment of POW's, murder, commencing hostilities without a declaration of war, and many, many other charges.


Im not sure if there was anyone with "spotless record", and its not very nice of you of coming up with strawmen like that.
But unless i misrecall completely there was at least a few that had done nothing that the majority of allied generals had not also, who were sentenced for whatever the court wanted that day.

Well, it's easy to make wild accusations of such things, but unless you can give specific examples of trials of innocent people, they mean nothing.

And no, it's not "coming up with a strawman", it's just holding you to the very reasonable standards of the forum. Any time someone asserts that something happened they can expect to be asked for specific examples with references cited. Otherwise, all we would get is wild-eyed assertions of facts which couldn't be proven or disproven.

Rising Sun*
10-31-2010, 05:10 AM
By 1941, USA, UK and Netherlands had been actively conducting economic warfare against Japan for 7 years, via the oil companies of their respective nations.

Japan had been conducting ruthless military warfare and civilian atrocities against
China during the same period, which was the cause of Western pressure against Japan to try to stop that war.

Focusing selectively on the West's alleged economic warfare while ignoring Japan's war against China is similar to the modern blinkered Japanese 'we were the innocent victim' and 'our enemies forced us into war' rubbish which surrounds much of Japan's conception of its experiences from the start of its war against China to the end of its war against just about everyone else in its region and well beyond its region.


... is plenty enough to give Japan a casus belli.

And the casus belli for Japan's war against China was ... ?


If the situation was the opposite, USA most certainly would have considered it a casus belli. And historically, USA have started wars for much less serious economical or other sorts of indirect warfare.

Even if that's true, how does it alter Japan's conduct in WWII and Japan's refusal to confront and admit that conduct?



And while Japan certainly isnt exactly the best at accepting its past, the attitude tends to be far more of a "-lets not bury us under such a long past dishonorable past, but instead look towards a better future" rather than attempts at actually falsifying anything.

So there is an implicit admission that the past is dishonourable, but a refusal to admit it in preference for looking to a better future. Which still constitutes a refusal to deal squarely with the past.

Concealment is as much a falsification as is a lie. Both obscure the truth.


And really, 2 generations after the war, is it really something that the younger Japanese today have anything what so ever to do with?

Only to the extent that they don't know their own history and don't understand the real reasons for what happened to Japan when it lost WWII, courtesy of an education system which for decades contrived to conceal their war history from them.


If so, then americans today are still also responsible for anything from civillian deaths in Iraq, the now commonly used practise of torture via the creation of dictatures in Vietnam or Nicaragua to the forced annexation of Hawaii and the wars of conquest against Spain or Mexico.

Why is it that according to you, generational guilt is applicable to Japan but not to USA?

I didn't say anything about generational guilt, not least because I think it's a silly notion.

My concern is with Japan refusing for several generations to admit fully and frankly its guilt in and related to WWII, as Germany did.


Are you under the delusion that there were no "war criminals" judged among the Japanese?

I'm not sure what you mean by this. Are you referring to something like Yamashita's response to the Alexandra Hospital massacre?


The "funny" thing is that some of the worst actual Japanese war criminals avoided punishment completely because they were too valuable scientifically or USA, while a whole bunch of higher commanders, some even with almost spotless records were put on trial and convicted of makebelieve crimes, or of crimes they had little or nothing to do with.

Most of the major war criminals who should have been prosecuted in Japan avoided punishment because it suited the Americans, and to a lesser extent the British (but not the Australians who continued prosecutions outside Japan) to drop prosecutions in the late 1940s to bolster Japanese support for America's confrontation with the communist powers.

Unlike the Germans, the Japanese had little of scientific or military value to the West, although a few bastards from Harbin were thought to have learned something from their atrocities and were not prosecuted but it turned out they had nothing of value. Although some of them went on to bigger and better things, including one who ran a major Japanese pharmaceutical company post-war.

Could you give me fifteen instances of completely innocent Japanese, being five from each of A Class, B Class and C Class, who were convicted of make-believe crimes or crimes they had nothing to do with?


And Nuremburg was almost a joke.

The humour escapes me.

Or is it sad irony, such as the defendants being accorded rights, procedures, principles, and representation denied to the millions whose deaths they ordered and or caused?


Oh some of the convictions were certainly very well earned and even properly handled in a legal sense, but all too much was an exercise in making sure there were properly EVIL scapegoats handy.

So who were the innocent defendants who were unjustly prosecuted and convicted as scapegoats?


I agree generally with the points Wizard has made in response to your posts.

Rising Sun*
10-31-2010, 05:15 AM
Oh poor poor you... Go march with your strawman army if you cant at least come up with something relevant or real to be snide about.

This is a formal comment from a moderator who hopes it won't be necessary to issue a formal warning if you ignore the comment.

Robust debate is welcome here, but remarks like the one above don't contribute to the debate.

Nick's pithy comment about China is highly relevant to the discussion. The countless Chinese deaths at Japanese hands were real.

Try responding to it with an argument about why Japan's conduct in China is irrelevant to the points you have made, rather than making a gratuitous comment about it being snide.

Rising Sun*
10-31-2010, 08:17 AM
Are you comparing me with Falstaff? ****ing great of you!


Who would've thunk you'd read Henry IV? Let alone understood it. ;) :D

(P.S. I didn't.)

Nickdfresh
10-31-2010, 08:30 AM
Who would've thunk you'd read Henry IV? Let alone understood it. ;) :D

(P.S. I didn't.)

What? He's a character from Henry the IVth? I didn't! I was talking about the now defunct beer! :D

http://www.gono.com/beermagazineads/falstaff/f28.jpg

Actually, I've read much Elizabethan propaganda (depending on how it's performed, it can also be subtly undermining) written by Bill!

Rising Sun*
10-31-2010, 08:57 AM
Yeah i can probably find the name again but certainly not tonight, i should already be asleep hours ago.
After a short little recap reading, no it wasnt Yamashita i meant, although his trial was totally ridiculous as well. Kangaroo courts, oh how we love thee?
I dont recall the name but i dont think the one i meant got executed, just jailed.

1. Please make the effort to identify the person you rely upon as an example of gross injustice. Otherwise your claim goes nowhere.

2. Yamashita's trial was not ridiculous, no matter how much one might question the concept of command responsibility. He, unlike the effective military dictatorship he worked for, got the full benefit of a democratic legal system which provided him with counsel who argued his case outside the military tribunal system, which is a ****ing sight more than was given by Japan to the millions of poor bastards who were exploited, enslaved, tortured, murdered and massacred by Yamashita's employers. http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/cgi-bin/getcase.pl?court=us&vol=327&invol=1

3. The Nuremberg and IMTFE tribunals were everything that the people they tried didn't have under their own systems, including advocates who did their best to represent the defendants in ways unknown in the dictatorships from which those defendants came.

4. Yamashita's case going before the US Surpreme Court demonstrates the quality and determination of his American lawyers to represent their client and to exhaust his legal remedies.

5. That fine tradition was exemplified in recent years by Major Mori, who did a fair job of destroying his own military career by doing everything he could to represent his client David Hicks. Wiki ain't my favourite source, but this is an accurate and very, very brief summary. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Mori


Kangaroo courts, oh how we love thee?

What would you prefer?

Some corrputed-Bushido-imbued ****wit with a cheap sword dispensing justice, or just random murder for the fun of it and to run up a tally, to Chinese civilians in a contest to see who could could kill the most Chinese? http://www.worldlingo.com/ma/enwiki/en/Contest_to_kill_100_people_using_a_sword

Or a system where an accused war criminal could have his case argued in the US Supreme Court, even though that wasn't part of the war crimes tribunal system?

Give me one example of anything approximating a trial by the Japanese before, for example, the Sook Ching massacres. Or Bangka Island. Or countless other pieces of ruthless brutality by mindless primitives motivated by, at best, racist hostility or, at best, ..... yes, well, at best, what would explain such things?

Rising Sun*
10-31-2010, 09:06 AM
What? He's a character from Henry the IVth? I didn't! I was talking about the now defunct beer! :D

This makes sense.

Beer is something I always associate with you.

And, alas, defunct. ;) :D

Rising Sun*
11-01-2010, 06:29 AM
Thats strange, i could swear i´ve heard words to that effect from at least 3 different Japanese prime ministers... Oh wait, "responsibility"? Right...

Those equivocal and often self-pitying 'apologies' rank with Hirohito's equally evasive refusal to face facts, and to avoid loss of face, with his ludicrous "the war has developed not necessarily to Japan's advantage" comment in his surrender speech.


Japanese apologies

Wed, 17/02/2010 - 16:59 — Gerhard Krebs

Yamazaki, Jane W. 2006. Japanese Apologies for World War II: A Rhetorical Study. London and New York: Routledge. xii, 196 pages, ISBN 0 415 35565 6

The Japanese government turns a blind eye to the country's colonial and second world war misdeeds - so goes the oft-heard criticism that periodically creates tension throughout the Far East. Jane Yamazaki, however, challenges the view that Japan has never apologised for past crimes, and argues instead that the rest of the world has turned a deaf ear on repeated Japanese expressions of regret. In recent decades Tokyo has apologised several times in different ways ranging from merely making excuses to expressing sincere regret. The problem often lies in language, since Japanese can be difficult to translate or leave a lot of room for interpretation. Yamazaki, therefore, not only details the history of Japan's multiple apologies; concentrating on the years between 1984 and 1995, she also analyses their rhetoric and translates different expressions.


From ‘hansei' to ‘chinsha': how to say ‘sorry'

Yamazaki begins her chronology of Japanese apologies with the 1965 normalisation of relations with South Korea, when Foreign Minister Shiina Etsusaburô expressed ‘true regret' (‘makoto ni ikan') and ‘deep remorse' (‘fukaku hansei') over an ‘unfortunate period in our countries' history'. Japan later used the same term in a joint communiqué when it normalised relations with China in 1972: ‘The Japanese side is keenly conscious of the responsibility for the serious damage that Japan caused in the past to the Chinese people through war, and deeply reproaches itself [fukaku hansei]'. ‘Hansei' (‘remorse', ‘reflection') is actually a weak expression of apology. Even softer was Emperor Hirohito's reference to Japan's treatment of China during the second world war while visiting President Ford in 1975: ‘The peoples of both countries...endured a brief, unfortunate ordeal as storms raged in the usually quiet Pacific'. Three years later, when Chinese Vice Premier Deng Xiao Ping visited Japan, Hirohito referred to the past by merely saying, ‘At one time, there were unfortunate events between our countries'.

In 1982 a controversy erupted over alleged revisions of Japanese history in school textbooks. Following what was perceived by many as Japan's less than diplomatic handling of the situation, violent reactions occurred in China and South Korea. The rising tensions induced Japanese politicians to apologise more clearly, though they still used the rather lightweight ‘hansei'. In 1985, for example, on the United Nations' 40th anniversary, Prime Minister Nakasone Yasuhiro declared, ‘Since the end of the war, Japan has profoundly regretted [kibishiku hansei] the unleashing of rampant ultra nationalism and militarism and the war that brought great devastation to the people of many countries around the world and to our country as well'. While regretting past wrongs, Yasuhiro stressed that Japan had suffered, too, a tactic repeated by other politicians.

The stronger ‘owabi' (‘apology') was first expressed in 1990, by Prime Minister Kaifu Toshiki to South Korean President Roh, and has been used regularly since: ‘...the people of the Korean peninsula experienced unbearable grief and suffering because of actions of our country...[we/I] are humbly remorseful [hansei] on this and wish to note our frank feelings of apology [owabi]'. Simultaneously, however, Japan stubbornly denied maintaining second world war ‘comfort stations' with forced prostitutes, most of them Korean. Cornered by Japanese historians, Cabinet Secretary Katô Kôichi publicly apologised to the ‘victims' (‘higaisha') in January 1992. Visiting Korea the same month, Prime Minister Miyazawa Kiichi even called Japan the ‘aggressor/perpetrator' (‘kagaisha').

Prime Minister Hosokawa Morihiro's August 1993 apology resembled Kaifu's in 1990, but with one addition that other politicians later reiterated several times: that Japan ‘will demonstrate a new determination by contributing more than ever before to world peace'. Hosokawa's cabinet included three ministers of the Socialist Party, which had been calling for reconciliation with other Asian peoples and ‘sincere Japanese apologies to achieve that goal'. In Korea in November 1993, Hosokawa ‘apologised from the heart' (‘chinsha') for ‘Japan's past colonial rule', calling his country the aggressor/perpetrator (‘kagaisha'). The Japanese public approved of his mention of ‘aggression' and ‘colonial rule', but conservatives bristled. Having gone beyond what fellow party members and his coalition government were willing to admit, Hosokawa was at times forced to backtrack. Nevertheless, the next Prime Minister, Hata Tsutomu, uttered almost the same words in a May 1994 Diet speech.
In August 1995, as the 50th anniversary of the second world war's end approached, the Socialist Murayama Tomiichi led a coalition government that included his long-time enemy, the conservative LDP. A known pacifist and advocate of non-alignment, neutrality and a closer relationship with Asian nations, Murayama apologised no differently than Kaifu, Miyazawa or Hosokawa had, yet the world took him much more seriously. Ironically, his stature as an apology advocate undermined his own government's recognition of his apology: after a long debate and vociferous right wing pressure, the resulting Diet resolution was so watered down that the word ‘apology' didn't even appear. This reinforced the outside world's impression that Japan had never apologised at all. Later prime ministers, all of them conservative, restated Murayama's apology almost verbatim.


The politics of apologia: Why say sorry?

Other nations also hate to apologise for wrongdoings, the author writes, and cites as an example the long overdue American apology to Japanese-Americans for their internment during the second world war. She finds American and British apologies are typically selective and ignore broader cases such as slavery, the use of napalm in Vietnam or the British Opium War. Indeed, when France passed a law, in February 2005, requiring history education in schools and universities to emphasise the ‘positive role' of the French colonial presence on other continents, it spurred harsh criticism by the French left and vehement protests in the countries concerned, above all in Algeria and the Antilles.

As for Japan, Yamazaki admits that its apologies are sometimes expressed only in a general way concerning warfare, aggression, war atrocities or colonial rule, but she also provides several examples of apology for specific violent events or practices, such as the Nanking massacre, biochemical warfare, sexual slavery, and mistreatment of allied soldiers and civilians. Japan's reasons for apologising, according to Yamazaki, are several: to repair relations with Asian countries; to stimulate national self-reflection and a learning process leading to a new, improved identity; to affirm moral principles. She also cites the historian Yoshida Yutaka, who sees apologies and other conciliatory strategies as motivated by the Japanese ambition to assert leadership in Asia. But the domestic call for self-reflection is also motivated by opposition parties or new administrations who wish to criticise previous ones - most clearly demonstrated by Prime Minister Hosokawa in 1993.

Japanese left-wing groups, unlike conservatives, are vehemently antimilitaristic and see the second world war as an instance of Japanese imperialism. Advocating closer ties with China, Korea and other Asian countries, they consistently demand a more remorseful stance and compensation for victims of Japanese aggression. The different political attitudes - conservative versus left-wing - are also reflected in the choice of expressions: ‘comfort women' versus ‘sex slaves', ‘Nanking incident' versus ‘Nanking massacre', ‘China Incident' versus ‘China War'. Yamazaki sees the conservative aversion to apology as an expression of a masochistic view of history and also of a fear that apologising would imply the Emperor's responsibility, if not culpability. But she neglects to sufficiently address conservatives' fear that admission of guilt would invite demands for compensation.

Continued ....

Rising Sun*
11-01-2010, 06:30 AM
Appearing unrepentant

The author believes that the South Korean government was ready to accept Japan's 1965 apology - its ‘hansei' on the occasion of normalising relations - but that the Korean public was not. The Chinese government's situation was similar, she says, but it later changed its attitude. Unfortunately, Yamazaki's study ends with the year 1995, after which the Chinese repeatedly campaigned to blame Japan for its alleged lack of sensibility. Other Asian countries believe Japan shouldn't feel guilty or apologise at all. Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Burma and Indonesia have taken a neutral attitude, holding that Japan should concentrate on present and future problems instead of wasting time and energy on historiographical reflection. They support the position of Japanese apologists, who claim that the second world war was fought for the liberation of Asia from white domination. Taiwan's reticence, meanwhile, probably reflects its ambivalence toward its former coloniser (1895-1945), close economic partner and ally in its campaign for recognition as the legitimate government of China, at least until Taipei lost that fight in 1972. Though the author herself admits that some Japanese apologies have been insufficient, her evidence that they have been expressed is convincing. But the period covered by Yamazaki's study ended over ten years ago. Since that time, regardless of any apologies expressed, Prime Minister Koizumi's numerous visits to the Yasukuni Shrine and the Ministry of Education's approval of controversial textbooks, (in 2001 and 2005), that present a ‘new view' of national history, have renewed a perception of Japan as unrepentant. Still, Yamazaki's book is a valuable response to the question of how Japan has dealt with its own history and of how the world has, or has not, responded.

Gerhard Krebs Berlin Free University Krebs-Takeda@t-online.de http://www.newasiabooks.org/review/japanese-apologies-0

Rising Sun*
11-01-2010, 07:04 AM
So, when will USA aknowledge its genocide against the american natives?

Possibly around the same time that Japan acknowledges its oppression of the Burakumin and Ainu.

But you’re not comparing apples with apples. The issue here is primarily to do with education and knowledge of a country’s own misdeeds. It took a long time for America’s mistreatment of its indigenous people to become part of popular knowledge, but books such as Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee redressed that and became part of the secondary and tertiary education syllabus from the 1970s.

Japan hasn’t done anything like that in relation to its mistreatment of various peoples in China and during WWII, although it is now about as far removed from those events as America was from the American Indian issues in the 1970s.

Meanwhile there are American politicians, and a Republican no less leading the charge, who are pursuing such an apology. http://brownback.senate.gov/pressapp/record.cfm?id=312340
http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?c111:S.J.RES.14:

Japan’s dominant party’s politicians’ response to Japan’s conduct in China and during WWII has been somewhat less apologetic. http://www.pacificwar.org.au/JapWarCrimes/Denying_truth.html



Or its terrorist acitivities in Central America? Propping up brutal dictators in central and south America, middle east and Africa...

These are not comparable, and are as irrelevant for the purposes of this discussion as is Japan’s conduct in its colony of Korea up to and during WWII.



How about the Hawaii coup?

If you want to beat the Yanks around their heads to demonstrate that they're at least as bad as the Japanese, you need to pick your examples more carefully.


SECTION 1. ACKNOWLEDGMENT AND APOLOGY.

The Congress -
(1) on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the illegal overthrow of the Kingdom of Hawaii on January 17, 1893, acknowledges the historical significance of this event which resulted in the suppression of the inherent sovereignty of the Native Hawaiian people;
(2) recognizes and commends efforts of reconciliation initiated by the State of Hawaii and the United Church of Christ with Native Hawaiians;
(3) apologizes to Native Hawaiians on behalf of the people of the United States for the overthrow of the Kingdom of Hawaii on January 17, 1893 with the participation of agents and citizens of the United States, and the deprivation of the rights of Native Hawaiians to self-determination;
(4) expresses its commitment to acknowledge the ramifications of the overthrow of the Kingdom of Hawaii, in order to provide a proper foundation for reconciliation between the United States and the Native Hawaiian people; and
(5) urges the President of the United States to also acknowledge the ramifications of the overthrow of the Kingdom of Hawaii and to support reconciliation efforts between the United States and the Native Hawaiian people. http://www.hawaii-nation.org/publawall.html


Starting aggressive wars with Spain and Mexico?

How far back do you want to go?

Maybe you think America should apologise to Britain for the War of Independence?

Or that Rome should apologise to Tunis for the Romans sacking Carthage?

Oops! Rome actually did that, a couple of millennia after the event. http://www.saudiaramcoworld.com/issue/198503/delenda.est.carthago.htm

Japan looks on track to take about as long.

Carl Schwamberger
11-02-2010, 08:01 PM
But you’re not comparing apples with apples. The issue here is primarily to do with education and knowledge of a country’s own misdeeds. It took a long time for America’s mistreatment of its indigenous people to become part of popular knowledge, but books such as Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee redressed that and became part of the secondary and tertiary education syllabus from the 1970s.

If you are refering to the popular literature then the recognition goes much further back, into the 19th Century. There was a minority but public view or opinion that the genocide of the native nations was occuring and wrong. It went paralle to well intentioned but usually ineffective efforts to relieve the decline of the native people and prevent further genocide. This went along with the attitudes towards the African american slaves & former slaves. While one segment of the population advocated & practiced terror control (lynchings) another segment opposed it.

Back in the 1970s I remember the leftists amoung the Baby Boomer generation accquired a conceit that social or moral virtue started with them & US history was devoid of any individual or group morality & justice before they came on the scene.

Rising Sun*
11-02-2010, 08:58 PM
If you are refering to the popular literature then the recognition goes much further back, into the 19th Century. There was a minority but public view or opinion that the genocide of the native nations was occuring and wrong. It went paralle to well intentioned but usually ineffective efforts to relieve the decline of the native people and prevent further genocide. This went along with the attitudes towards the African american slaves & former slaves. While one segment of the population advocated & practiced terror control (lynchings) another segment opposed it.

Thanks for that.

My knowledge pretty much started with the 1970s popular publications and discussion.


Back in the 1970s I remember the leftists amoung the Baby Boomer generation accquired a conceit that social or moral virtue started with them & US history was devoid of any individual or group morality & justice before they came on the scene.

Same thing here with the history of our indigenous people, about which I'm much better informed.

The 1970s onwards outrage here was generally based in the belief that great wrongs had been uncovered, which they certainly had as far as exposing them to the general public was concerned, but often on implicit and wholly incorrect assumptions, and notably that everyone in previous generations had been a racist exterminator with contempt for the Aborigines and their culture or simply didn't care.

Boutte
02-07-2012, 12:05 PM
I notice a phenomenon here that is common on most discussion boards dealing with recent history, that is, attempting to defray or mitigate guilt for the deeds of countries like Japan and Nazi Germany by accusing Allied Nations and most particularly the US of equally reprehensible actions.

Certainly there are legitimate instances of heavy handed and in a very small number of cases criminal deeds that occurred in the course of a long and brutal war that was forced on the accused by the aggressive actions of the Axis nations. In this alone we have someone who accuses the U.S. and Britain of causing the war with Japan while steadfastly refusing to address Japan's aggressive and criminal actions which led to the supposed provocative actions of said nations.

Another phenomenon that is common on WW 2 discussion boards is that it's almost mandatory to denigrate the US and it's contribution to the war effort. Surprisingly this attitude is limited to a few right wing kooks or neo-Nazis but is prevalent even among Europeans who benefited immeasurably from US our efforts to liberate Europe. It seems to be more common to see criticism of not only the US as a nation but even of the soldiers who were fighting and dieing their way across continental Europe in actions that saw the removal of an oppressive and murderous occupier. Why the resentment?

I understand that in today's world many see the US as a bully because of it's willingness to assert it's economic and political and military power. That however is a completely different discussion. Perhaps it's just too difficult to separate the two issues?

leccy
02-07-2012, 12:39 PM
Another phenomenon that is common on WW 2 discussion boards is that it's almost mandatory to denigrate the US and it's contribution to the war effort. Surprisingly this attitude is limited to a few right wing kooks or neo-Nazis but is prevalent even among Europeans who benefited immeasurably from US our efforts to liberate Europe. It seems to be more common to see criticism of not only the US as a nation but even of the soldiers who were fighting and dieing their way across continental Europe in actions that saw the removal of an oppressive and murderous occupier. Why the resentment?

I understand that in today's world many see the US as a bully because of it's willingness to assert it's economic and political and military power. That however is a completely different discussion. Perhaps it's just too difficult to separate the two issues?

In Europe there is a tendency to react negatively to Hollywood's and the media's portrayal that the US won the war. Recent films portraying the US as capturing the Enigma machine and US pilots saving the day in the BoB as examples tend to give the impression that the US ignores any other contribution and indeed will re-write history to aggrandize itself. The general idea on some forums from Americans that the war started in 1941 (rather similar to WW1 when the US entered the war in 1917 and won it after the British and French had been sitting on their rears for years).

Couple this with the attitude that gets noticed on many forums I am on with a certain type of American who beats his chest and says all enemies of the US should be killed, if 100 civilians have to die or be tortured to save one US serviceman's life its worth it. A recent one I have seen is an increase in the claim that (from alleged USMC persons, they always seem to be ex marines) that the US should make people fear the US so much that they will never consider attacking anything American.

Modern perception quickly colours the past, and the loud voice of a few tends to get noticed more than the silence of the majority.

Boutte
02-07-2012, 04:46 PM
I can see that. Especially if someone is silly enough to consider Hollywood a source of historical information.

On the other hand Capt. Rafe McCawley did single handedly win both the European and Pacific theaters of war. Anyone who disputes this is a know nothing fascist.

muscogeemike
02-07-2012, 08:12 PM
I think that Hollywood is the reason I became interested in History - I knew that so much I saw in the movies was wrong so I started to read and find out for myself.
I believe that movies (and TV) are still where most people get their history. How many will bother to read anything about the Tuskegee Airmen before, or after, they see the movie?