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Japan Rewriting History Is Inexcusable.
Japan Rewriting History Books: By Lee En-han. (Taipei Times, world news.)
Japan's Ministry of Education, Culture, Science and Technology approved eight versions of history textbooks for high school education on April 3, 2001. The textbooks are scheduled to go into use next April. Unlike the seven textbooks currently in use, the new ones basically gloss over or glorify Japan's invasion of Asian countries prior to and during World War II.
Each of the current textbooks mentions comfort women, who were forced to provide sexual services for Japanese soldiers during the war, but only three of the new versions do so. The phrase "military comfort women" in old versions is also replaced by comfort women or comfort stations.
As for the Chinese prisoners of war or civilians killed by Japanese soldiers in the eight-week long Nanking Massacre that began on Dec. 13, 1937, only two new books specify the number of victims as "more than 100,000 people" or "approximately 200,000 people." Other versions simply say "a large number of Chinese [were slaughtered]."
In one of the new textbooks, which is compiled by the right-wing "New History Textbooks Compiling Committee," the Nanking Massacre is simply called an "incident" and the tragic slaughter of more than 300,000 Chinese is reduced to the one sentence, "Many Chinese were killed."
The textbook also praises the Japanese invasions of Southeast Asian countries, saying they sowed the seeds which helped the region's colonies banish European colonialism. It says that one key factor that hastened the independence of those Southeast Asian countries was the arrival of Japanese troops. The above statements are a completely illogical reversal of cause and effect.
It must be clearly stated that the Japanese government's intention to gloss over Japan's wartime atrocities by rewriting history runs counter to the sentences imposed upon the 25 Japanese class-A war criminals sentenced by the International Military Tribunal for the Far East after the end of the war. These sentences were legally safeguarded by Article 11 of the San Francisco Peace Treaty signed on Sept. 8, 1951. The article reads as follows:
"Japan accepts the judgments of the International Military Tribunal for the Far East and of other Allied War Crimes Courts both within and outside Japan, and will carry out the sentences imposed thereby upon Japanese nationals imprisoned in Japan. The power to grant clemency, reduce sentences and parole with respect to such prisoners may not be exercised except on the decision of the government or governments which imposed the sentence in each instance, and on the recommendation of Japan. In the case of persons sentenced by the International Military Tribunal for the Far East, such power may not be exercised except on the decision of a majority of the governments represented on the Tribunal, and on the recommendation of Japan."
The post-war government cannot shirk the above-mentioned responsibility and obligations regarding its wartime aggression. The Nanking Massacre was one of the events on which the tribunal deliberated before making its ruling. If the Japanese government intends to authorize textbooks to overturn the tribunal's sentences, it will violate that peace treaty and incur penalties under international law.
In the summer of 1996, the right-wing New History Textbooks Compiling Committee started rewriting textbooks that gloss over Japanese aggression. By the end of March 1997, it had published more than 90 brochures to deny the existence of comfort women, such as Documentary Record: the Comfort Women Question and the Smears of Current Textbooks. The committee also embarked on a national propaganda campaign in all major cities to promote its ideas by holding lectures and seminars.
Thoroughly-researched multi-lingual sources, however, prove that the committee's statements are completely groundless, generated by arbitrary and emotional prejudice. They do not stand up to the rigors of historical analysis.
In the face of these newly approved books which disregard real history, we people of the ROC who were persecuted at that time, must firmly oppose Japan's conduct. We must voice our strongest protest against such preposterous wrongdoing.
Lee En-han is research fellow emeritus in the Institute of Modern History at Academia Sinica.
Translated by Jackie Lin
More information here...
JAPAN: Far right rewrites history.
Main page here about the movie 'The Thin Red Line' and a PC game called 'Sudden Strike Forever' with other information about Guadalcanal Island 1942 - 1943.
A big thanks to Lynn Stevens of the UFO disclosure project supporters and archive page here... http://ebe-ufos.tripod.com/ ....for help with HTML and for hosting this page about 'The Thin Red Line' and Japan rewriting history books. As I couldn't place everything at University or at my parents workplace. And I didn't want to create a website at Geocities or Tripod at this stage. But I might dedicate an entire website to this matter in the future.