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Abe to pay tribute to 'Japan's Schindler' in Lithuania: A Japanese diplomat who saved 6,000 European Jews from the Holocaust by issuing visas to allow them to escape war-torn Lithuania will be hailed by Japan's prime minister, decades after defying Tokyo to help the refugees.

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127 points · 6 months ago

In Vilnius we have a bunch of Japanese cherry trees planted in honor of Sugihara. They look really nice when they blossom.

Also, why does the title not mention his real name?

I admire the Japanese people.

I do not admire the right-wing Japanese government that seeks to erase the shameful deeds of their ancestors.

I do understand where your coming from and I know this is true. But S.Korea does antagonize entire Japan for the governments action and does not address the fact that Japan as a entire country is not responsible. This has died down in recent years but is still prominent in Korean society.

Not to mention S.Korea did sign multiple aggrement with Japan about the issue yet still ask for more(and yes I know 99% of these aggrement was a fuck up by S.Korean government). I mean in their shoes they tried everything they could but they would still not accept the apology.

I think this could be solved only if Korea, Japan and China get together face to face and have a long discussion(at least 4 year) about this subject and work on it from there. Because without it we're going nowhere.

This dicussion would involve things like:

  • Identifying Crimes that each country has caused.

  • Admitting(officially) the crimes they caused

  • Repent for their action(this could involve paying a fine to the victims[AND NOT TO THE GOVERNMENT] or etc...)

  • Aggrement to not dissmiss the action that happened in the discussion and denouncement to any organization that dissmissed anything mentioned above.(Such as far right group in any country)

Comment deleted6 months ago(More than 24 children)

You know how Republicans in the South keep saying that the Civil War was a "War of Northern Aggression" and that they were fighting for "state's rights"?

The Japanese government is doing the same shit right now. That doesn't sound like an apologetic stance at all.

Imagine German textbooks saying, "well... the Polish peoples were uncivilized, so we went through great effort to bring their country into the 20th century."

Anyone with half a brain would be like: "WHAT THE FUCK?!?!"

[deleted]
-1 points · 6 months ago(0 children)

Yea. Which is why I've been arguing that Bill Clinton is a Dixiecrat in sheep's clothes this entire time. Your point?

Comment deleted6 months ago(0 children)

There is no expiration date for debts of this kind. It is up to the victims to forgive, not simply to forget. Considering that some victims are still alive today, how can you speak as if these atrocities are mere distance historical events? It was never about whether the knowledge of the events are known or taught in schools, but about the attitude towards them. Especially from those who represent the State. If the existence of a state is to be seen as continuous, how do you reconcile an sincere apology with enshrining war criminal and paying them tribute? You cannot, and therefore no amount of "apology touring" is enough, because there is no earnestness in those apologies. An apology of this kind, will be received as insult, and the pages of history, will not be turned anew.

Comment deleted6 months ago(0 children)

8m usd is an insultingly paltry amount.

Also it’s not about money, Japanese and corrupted Korean officials treat these women as prostitues.

Japan has the right to claim "Japan did no wrong" to rally right wing votes.

Korea and China also has the right to do "Japan did something wrong" to rally their supporters.

If you want to play political games, don't be surprised your neighbors does the same.

Comment deleted6 months ago(0 children)

Ah, lets "blame the victim" whenever Japanese atrocities are brought up.

Did I argue for Korean doctoring of their history so that it jives with their nationalistic sentiments?

I'm against nationalism of all forms. I don't understand why it's so hard to advocate for real history, a real appreciation for culture, without the poison of tribalism—which nationalism is one of the most conspicuous manifestations of...

My parents are Korean. I'm learning Japanese. I wasn't being facetious when I said that I admire much Japanese culture. But fucking with history so that your progeny grow ignorant of your ancestor's past is sin.

Comment deleted6 months ago(0 children)

You act as if that's going to hurt me... If it's historically sound information, I'll treat it as such. If the Korean government hasn't apologized to the Vietnamese peoples in a manner that the Vietnamese see fit, then they should rectify that accordingly. I still don't understand the point you're trying to make.

Comment deleted6 months ago(0 children)
2 points · 6 months ago · edited 6 months ago

You should know that Korea was run by juntas and dictators for some time before it started its path toward democratization starting in the late 80s. Even now, nationalistic leanings have been imbued in the school texts. It's this very same ignorance that you accuse nationalistic Koreans of that I see as an issue. I have a problem with nationalism, full stop. It breeds ignorance and misinformation. Ironically, your point about nationalistic Koreans speaks directly to the issue of Japanese textbook whitewashing and why without addressing this, any statements of "apology" ring hollow.

3 points · 6 months ago

lol the fact that your IJA apologism is posted from a throwaway is evidence enough that you're full of shit. The Japanese government even today is notoriously unwilling to admit or take accountability for the systematic, state-sanctioned rape, murder, and forcible prostitution of hundreds of thousands if not millions of civilians during WWII and the Second Sino-Japanese War. Korean comfort women are but a fraction of the horrific crimes against humanity perpetrated in the 30s and 40s by the Empire of Japan.

Comment deleted6 months ago(0 children)
4 points · 6 months ago

Funny that you use the term whataboutism when that's exactly how you responded. I'm not commenting on anything at all besides your marginalization of widespread IJA war crimes and am well aware of the fact that all kinds of terrible shit happened in east Asia and the Pacific during WW2 (and Vietnam, and all conflicts).

That being said, you making this kind of statement pretty much illustrates my point in the context of extreme political antagonism across Japan to monuments in memorial of Korean comfort women:

Koreans have NO RIGHT to complain about comfort women after 300M USD was paid in war reparations

Comment deleted6 months ago(0 children)
3 points · 6 months ago

Clearly you have major gripes with Korea and/or Koreans but your conflation of the government and the people (and historical atrocities) is unsettling. This honestly has almost nothing to do with what I was responding to you about initially (my main background is in war crimes against Chinese civilians by the IJA), but please consider that from my perspective it looks like you're arguing from an almost totally prejudicial and angry/hateful standpoint. I will not continue to engage this kind of silly, evasive reasoning.

Comment deleted6 months ago(0 children)
3 points · 6 months ago

I think your personal experience of racism in Korea is completely valid and a worthwhile discussion in its own right.

That being said you hijacked a general discussion about the modern right wing Japanese political practice of minimizing, denying and/or protesting acknowledgments of the massive scale crimes against humanity engineered by the Empire of Japan to rant about Koreans.

Comment deleted6 months ago(More than 16 children)

What are you talking about? Germany doesn't celebrate the Nazis at all. AT ALL.

You have fringe far-right yahoos everywhere. I get that. But the German government does a pretty good job of shutting those imbeciles down instead of openly capitulating to them like Abe's government.

The problem with the Japanese government right now is that they say that they "apologize" while they continue to honor war criminals under the guise of "muh heritage" while actively seeking to white wash their ancestor's sins out of their school textbooks.

That doesn't sound like apologizing to me.

Comment deleted6 months ago(0 children)

The real world ramifications of not knowing the real history are at the very root of almost all racial supremacist movements. This is why this is an issue.

It's not to make anyone feel "guilty."

It's so that everyone is properly educated on the past. Why does it seem as if this is hard for you to understand?

Comment deleted6 months ago(0 children)

Did... did, did you just cite the bible as a historical source?

Apart from that, do you realize that it is possible to learn real history without condemning people of the present? Mindblowing, I know...

Comment deleted6 months ago(0 children)

Why do you keep presuming that kids would internalize their sins of their forefathers in a destructive manner?

You know what I did when I learned about American history? I said, "Well, that was shitty. I should probably pay attention so that this never happens again."

It's not about guilt. It's not about feelings. It's about learning.

If you went home in tears when you learned about the horrible things that occured throughout history that’s your problem. I cant believe you are implying we shouldnt teach things because they could be considered upsetting or shameful. Get a grip.

Also, what "psychological trauma"? Are you really telling me that learning the real history of your ancestors is supposed to hurt your feelings?

And if you want to talk about "collective guilt," perhaps you should feel guilty that you live without the hinderances of others due to historical events and blind luck that you were born into the family that you were.

Comment deleted6 months ago(0 children)

"The program, these parents say, deliberately instills in white children a strong sense of guilt about their race. Some kids come home in tears, saying, “I’m a bad person.”"

No. It's not "guilt."

It's awareness.

So if a child's parents are criminals or prostitutes, the teachers should do a class presentation on how bad the child's parents are?

Why are you conflating personal history with societal history? As if the point of history classes are to intrude the personal privacy of every student and their parents?

[deleted]
0 points · 6 months ago(0 children)

Lmao. That's how you took my comment?

2 points · 6 months ago · edited 6 months ago

I want China, Japan and S and N Korea to get along. All had issues during their course of history. I think what most people have hard time accepting is to what degree they should appologise for their crime. For example like the one mentioned in the parent comment, Japan's "apologie" does not equal to what China/Korea consider "apologie". That is the core issue here, but I think "...perpetual institutionalized guilt..." is bit of an exaggeration. The reason i say that was because it was not that long ago. The people who were involved are still alive and at most it was 60+years ago. Thats half a century. And im not saying Japan should forever live with this guilt but it does not help the fact that "Japan"(im speaking to those who specifically does this not the entire country) tries to down play the severity of their crime.

But I do admit China and Korea barking at Japan would not solve the problem and in fact would make the situation even more complicated. This is an issue that should have been solved long time ago. The only way to solve this problem is to stop antagonising each other and come together to have a discussion, face to face.

Edit: Spelling

Btw pls dont erase your comment I want people to have a discussion. That is the only way to get the information of the other side.

Because the actual title of the article is "Abe to pay tribute to 'Japan's Schindler' in Lithuania" and the reddit suggested title also picked up the first paragraph and made it one long title

Still could have used his name but it makes more sense

Germany's Schindler!

Did not expect that to be honest

It's amazing how people still equate countries and individual people. A country is just a small group of empowered people. Germany and Japan and every other country is full of people that know what is right and are willing to risk their lives and livelihoods, even if it means acting against country. Wars are fought by the young, naive and easily indoctrinated not by all the people. There are plenty of people thought fought their own governments during WWII. Most we will never know about because they were killed.

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28 points · 6 months ago(13 children)
Comment deleted6 months ago(0 children)
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3 points · 6 months ago(0 children)

A secret police also existed in Russia, but there was far more discontent there.

In the USSR? In the 1930s-40s? Discontent was exterminated.

The Allies were aware of the Holocaust by 42, not the end of the war.

That is actually false. Many people fled Germany. Even more tried to flee Germany it is just that other countries refused to allow them to leave. When you have no options. When you can't leave and speaking out will get you killed MOST people will chose to fake it. And, we will never know about the people who did speak out because they are dead. You have a false understanding of mass psychology.

7 points · 6 months ago · edited 5 months ago

deleted 0.1885 What is ^^^this?

Yes it is. North Korea has high morale. Because, North Koreans can't be negative. Similarly, Scientology has high morale. Women in Muslim countries, etc. If your options are accept or die you will most likely chose acceptance. There is even a name for this: Stockholm Syndrome.

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0 points · 6 months ago(0 children)

Italy had high morale because everyone was happy the war ended. I can't speak Spain but on Russia, you are wrong.

You are also wrong about "local cult". Most cult members are not familial but are outcasts of their peer and family groups. I would provide sources but google scholar is easy enough to use.

Germany was sadly not "full of" people who would risk themselves or even fight against their country for what we know would have been the right thing to do.

Show me when in history a majority of people have ever been willing to fight against their country, especially when it is run by secret police that were willing to torture and throw people in concentration camps? Forget even just Germany in WW2, look at the USSR, China, even the US with it's history of atrocities. Most people keep their heads down and avoid conflict.

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2 points · 6 months ago(0 children)

Some did, some didn't. What is horrible is that the Communists in Germany welcomed the Allies and were more often than not imprisoned/executed by the Brits and Soviets, who wanted to suppress any groups outside their control; the Brits of course wanted no communist influence in their sector, while Soviets had their 'pet' German communists already, which they had extensively purged.

Except Germany had remarkably little public discontent against the National Socialist regime.

With that Treaty they are forced to sign after WWI, I would love the living shit out of Nazi if I was a German

And to be fair part of the reason it was so hard to help the jews period was no one wanted them. No other country had open doors saying jews come here for safety. More a if you can get here we wont kill you attitude. The other countries like to pretend to be innocent but they where offered the jews and told exactly what would happen and did nothing. We have more blood on our hands because we could of prevented almost all of it.

That is correct. Even fewer groups wanted the Romani and homosexuals and the other groups the Nazis went after.

Same as the backlash against refugees today.

3 points · 6 months ago · edited 6 months ago

No it’s not, these situations are nothing alike. Jews, Slavs and others were exterminated in their own countries, they weren’t coming to Germany with any demands. Besides no one is exterminating refugees, far from it, they being catered for.

Yeah history is bound to repeat itself from those who dont learn from it

3 points · 6 months ago

Just like Niko Bellic said " War is when the young and stupid are tricked by the old and bitter into killing each other. "

Steve Jobs used the same principles to sell inferior phones to people.

9 points · 6 months ago · edited 6 months ago

It's amazing how people still equate countries and individual people

This. It's a remnant of American and British propaganda during WW2. [George Bell](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Bell_(bishop)) was a British bishop who worked together with the German resistance and when he tried to convince Anthony Eden not to equate Germans with National Socialists, he was rejected because it was not "in the national interest". The same guy also criticized the area bombing campaign and the forceful expulsion of Germans from their native lands.

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10 points · 6 months ago

That's very interesting but I think there's something much simpler going on.

People find international politics easier if they imagine countries as people, its just a plain old case of people not liking to recognise complexity.

It has existed far longer than Britain has existed most likely. The Crusades wouldn't have occurred without conditioning.

But, the modern indoctrination does stem from colonial Britain. Britain did a wonderful thing by educating the world and setting templates for school systems but they also spread a lot of foul ideas.

Wars are fought by the young, naive and easily indoctrinated not by all the people.

Well, so much for your screed about treating people as individuals.

Your reading comprehension is poor.

Just calling out your self-righteous sensibilities.

Since you can’t figure out how your statement about soldiers contradicted your entire premise, let me explain.

The people who fight the wars are not the ones who order those wars to be fought. The soldiers themselves, poor, uneducated, unsocialized, and conscripted as they are, frequently oppose the war far more so than the brainwashed, college educated upper-middle-class watching it on TV. Polls during the Vietnam War bore thisnout. The Christmas Truce of WW1 bore this out.

The fact is that your personal biases betray your own lofty ideals. And I find that ironic.

0 points · 6 months ago · edited 6 months ago

But, I am not self-righteous. The people who fight wars are those that join the military or are as you say conscripted. I can't speak to every person that joins the military but I can say that almost everyone who joins does so before they turn 20. So they are young, naive and easily indoctrinated.

And, you don't understand what irony is. You are being ironic as your own argument is "uneducated, unsocialized and conscripted" is just a reflection of "young, naive and easily indoctrinated"

If you oppose the war. Stop fighting. You always have a choice. Plenty fled Vietnam to Canada. And, of course people once their lives are actually at risk don't want to fight anymore.

1 point · 6 months ago · edited 6 months ago

You are wrong and you aren’t considering everything I said. They are young, historically too young to even vote. But they are LESS socialized (“indoctrinated”), not more. They don’t have preconceived notions. It’s the old who are already indoctrinated and the old are the reason why the war is happening to begin with. The old are the ones who voted for it. The old are the ones keeping old, xenophobic, racist beliefs alive. The old are in charge of everything. It’s the old who send the young to their deaths.

Either way, your beliefs about dumb young people betray your stated belief that we should treat them as individuals and not as indoctrinated agents of their country’s national policy.

And words do have meaning. Socialization and indoctrination are synonyms, not antonyms. Being less socialized into mainstream society means you are less indoctrinated into it’s culture and motives, not more. You might still believe in Santa Claus because of lies your parents told you, but it’s at that young age when you are more likely to DROP stupid belief systems rather than double down on them like some old coot would. You want to talk about indoctrination? Look at the target demographic for Fox News. They’re over 65 and they are the most brainwashed members of our society.

Statistics bear out the facts, my friend. Young men who join the military become more liberal and open-minded than their peers back home who never did. They become less racist. They become more accepting of other cultures and other countries. They even marry women from the “enemy” countries, like a lot of young American men did after the Vietnam war. They run for political office as progressive, anti-war politicians, like a lot of Iraq War veterans did, in response to the corruption and antiquated beliefs of the pro-war Boomer politicians like Hillary Clinton.

There is no point in continuing. I am just going to block you. Good bye.

-8 points · 6 months ago(0 children)

I hope Prime Minister Abe can also pay tribute to John Rabe, a German businessman and Nazi party member who sheltered 200,000 civilians during Nanking massacre.

Oh, I forgot Japan doesn't acknowledge the crimes they committed.

11 points · 6 months ago

Came here to mention John Rabe. I did an undergraduate history thesis about his and other foreigners role in protecting the civilians of Nanking during the Japanese invasion. Here is a post I wrote a few years ago that talks about him and his fellow foreigners (mostly missionaries and Red Cross personnel) who helped establish the Nanjing Safety Zone and protect arguably a quarter of a million Chinese civilians from widespread war rape and murder at the hands of the invading Imperial Japanese Army.

Reposting here to save a click:

His life story is very depressing to say the least. He left Germany long before WWI to work in Africa and was in China working for Siemens from 1908-1938, meaning he missed the entire rise of the Nazi party and socioeconomic conditions that spurred it.

As far as I understand his Nazi party membership was basically just because he was the most important German businessman in China - reading his diary he was clearly a good and decent man and I can't imagine he subscribed to or even really was particularly aware of a lot of the darker aspects of the party's ideology since he was basically in total isolation from it, being one of a very small number of foreigners living in China and focused on administering Siemen's business interests there.

Along with the rest of the International Committee for the Nanking Safety Zone (which he organized and was the de facto leader of) - mostly comprised of American missionaries - he more or less singlehandedly used his influence with the Japanese as the ranking Nazi party member in China to establish the safety zone and protect hundreds of thousands of Chinese civilians who would have otherwise been subject to rape, torture and murder at the hands of the IJA like the rest of the population of the city.

After returning to Germany in 1938 he wrote a letter to Hitler entreating him to intervene on behalf of the Chinese population, providing material evidence of the massive scale of systematic rape and murder of civilians perpetrated by the IJA during the invasion and occupation of mainland China. The Gestapo never even delivered the letter to Hitler and arrested him for questioning - he was only freed because Siemens intervened on his behalf.

After the war he was interrogated by both British and Soviet intelligence, released, then denied work because of his Nazi affiliation. His family was destitute and could hardly keep food on the table - although the citizens of Nanjing heard about this in 1948 and put together a care package of what food and money they could send his family - and he died penniless of a stroke in 1950.

He was not recognized for his actions until Iris Chang discovered his diary in the early 1990s and wrote The Rape of Nanking. Even now practically nobody knows about it.

The Yale Divinity School Library has a fantastic and comprehensive directory of online primary sources related to the Nanking Massacre at their Nanking Massacre Project website... hundreds of letters, diaries and photographs scanned and transcribed and available online for anyone interested in reading further.

edit: to anyone confused by the fact I'm switching back and forth between Nanjing and Nanking, the latter is the way it was traditionally spelled by Westerners in the late 1930s, whereas "Nanjing" is the more phonetically accurate modern translation of the city's name

edit2: whoa, thanks for the gold! I feel bad since I typed this mostly off the top of my head (it's been about 5 years since I researched all this stuff) so some of it might be a bit inaccurate. If anyone has questions about primary sources or any of the other people involved in the Safety Zone though let me know!

Some other interesting people to read about who were directly involved in the Nanking Safety Zone's efforts to protect civilians (note that only some of them were members of the International Committee for the Nanking Safety Zone while others like Vautrin and Wilson were members of the International Red Cross Committee of Nanking, which had the same goals and worked alongside the Safety Zone committee to protect civilians):

  • Minnie Vautrin was an American missionary with a similarly tragic story (she killed herself a few years after all this stuff happened)

  • [John Magee](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Magee_(missionary)) was an American priest and missionary who risked his life to take photography and film documentation of the massacre

  • Miner Searle Bates was an American academic working at Nanking University who was nearly murdered by Japanese soldiers on numerous occasions for intervening in their attempts to rape and/or murder Chinese women

  • Dr. Robert O. Wilson was an American physician at Nanking University who was the only surgeon not to flee the city during the Japanese invasion and as a result was, with a small team of nurses, responsible for medical attention to all several hundred thousand civilians the International Committee sheltered (and remember this was in a violent warzone)

There are others as well but these are some of the more well-documented people. Fascinating stuff, the courage these people had was immense and saved the lives (and prevented the rape of) hundreds of thousands of people and their monumental achievement in doing so at great personal risk to themselves deserves to be remembered and celebrated.

6 points · 6 months ago

My grandfather was one of these jews. I have pictures of him in japan he was part of the 4th palestine group and letters he wrote in Yiddish to the usa from kobe he was from lodz. I hope to one day visit kobe and see if there is more info i can find on him.

Does Japan pay tribute to any Japanese during WW2 that helped saved lives of people the Japanese government were trying to slaughter? Or are they viewed as traitors?

10 points · 6 months ago

Don't forget the Japaneses have been actively worshipping their war criminals in WW2. A lot of war criminals in Japan had escaped the punishments, and they've been trying hard to paint themselves as the victims.

That would imply that Japanese did something wrong in WW2 so, no.

27 points · 6 months ago

Japan is the only country that still worships WWII criminals officially. PM Abe himself did and does as well.

-17 points · 6 months ago(11 children)
-10 points · 6 months ago(0 children)

Nah, they commemorate them (i.e. Yasukinu Shrine).

The Japanese is waving the "culture" flag, they argue that it is about their religious beliefs on "protectors of the emperor" are the semi-deity to them, anyone who sacrificed their life for Japan should be put in the shrine.

anyone who sacrificed their life for Japan should be put in the shrine.

Well, if Nazis can't build a shrine in Germany, why should the Japanese get exceptions, because Japan is an U.S. ally? So is Germany.

2 points · 6 months ago · edited 6 months ago

Nah, like i said the Japanese are waving the culture or religion flag as an excuse, the shrine has been functioning like that for decades, and also its the difference between western culture and eastern culture. East asian are easier to tolerate controversial figures of their own, see China and South Korea. Some dictatorship era notorious politicians are still alive and without being sent to prison, guess what could happen if they were in Europe, probably got war crime investigations after even decades. But hey the Japanese common people dont see it the way Germans see Nazi criminals that's the real difference. There is communist party in Japan that suggested to kill the emperor and punish all war criminals and restrict their descendants from politic but you see they dont get much support from the common people. If the Japanese are a bit like the Germans and be more aggressive toward those war criminals, the whole thing will be different. Im saying the shrine and those criminals got supported by the people or ignored the fact by the people, what else you could do to change it. And that's why democracy invented by European not East asian. Like a famous Japanese political economic writer said in his book, the difference between east and west and why the west evolved into democracy and capitalism is that the west have an institution called Christian church, the pope that has power over dynasty and nobles, and people worship the God that has unlimited power even the most powerful landlord could not compete with the God and remains a mortal, it marks the prototype of constitutional power. But in the east it never happened. This made the older generation of eastern asian difficult to get rid of emperor, ancestors, power worshiping mentality and can not judge them like normal people, although their new generation is much different now.

That is a very simplified view of a "revolution" in Japan. I don't disagree with everything you said, but the "communists" who argue for destroying the Imperial family and sending all war-crime connected families to prison are exactly the kind of radicals that empower the moderate right wingers.

-5 points · 6 months ago(0 children)
11 points · 6 months ago

A) There is a shrine dedicated to war criminals in Japan believe it or not.

B) The war criminals were never listed in the Yasukuni shrine until the 80s. Plus, the biggest problem is the museum attached to the shrine. It actively denies Japanese atrocities and suggests they were "freeing" Asian from European imperialism.

That I do not know about. Thank you for telling me that. I better find out more about this dedicated shrine myself too.

Still I stand by my words that the entire shrine as a whole isn't just for war criminals only. I do know that there are war criminals there but It had enshrined soldiers, man, woman who payed their life long before ww2. Treating it as one only war criminal shrine is a disrespect to the dead who are not war criminals.

The shrine that do have dedicated to worshipping war criminal ? I think it have no place for sure. Same deal with that museum denying atrocities.

Yasukuni is a divisive place even in Japan. When it was established in the 1860's it was developed into a collective shrine for every Japanese citizen who lost their lives "in service of the country and the Emperor". That rule was established in a time when empires (while in decline) were still ruling most of the developed world and had a firm grasp of the rest. This idea then continued to run rampant in the early 20th century, and went unchecked until the end of the war.

Japan's postwar constitution sees a separation of church and state, which means that places like Yasukuni became a separate body altogether. This might have been what lead to Yasukuni becoming a hot-bed for right-wing extremists, with a memorial hall (I refuse to call it a museum) that denies the results of the Potsdam conference. And yes, right wing politicians visiting Yasukuni isn't only a moral problem but also a political one, which is discussed in political circles. The big problem is that the right-wing government is doing it's "best" to keep most citizens politically uninterested, which keeps concrete public discourse to a minimum.

Yeah...this is more difficult than just evil right-wing Japanese screwing with the victim-nations of Asia.

Still I stand by my words that the entire shrine as a whole isn't just for war criminals only.

You are correct, but hear me out. Japanese government is often criticized because they do not have any government operated memorial or cemetery dedicated to the victims of war, like Arlington. Yasukuni is just a religious institution that is technically not operated by the Japanese government. This is often seen as the government trying to avoid any blame for the actions of the shrine, such as commemorating war criminals and imperialism in a positive light.

Treating it as one only war criminal shrine is a disrespect to the dead who are not war criminals.

This is one of the reasons why there were movements in Japan to create a government sanctioned memorial for the victims of war, but those movements never went anywhere. One of the excuses by the opposition was that they already have Yasukuni. They do have Chidorigafuchi national cemetery, where they pay respect to unknown soldiers and civilians, but it is ignored by the politicians.

As a side note, Yasukuni has a long history of being a part of pro-government propaganda. Around 1869, after Boshin war was over, Yasukuni was used to pay respect to the dead soldiers of the emperor's army (victor), and not the soldiers of the shogunate army. Historically in Japan, the dead soldiers were not discriminated for religious purposes. During the WWII, the shrine was operated by the Japanese Army and Navy, and was featured in some war songs.

-7 points · 6 months ago(2 children)

Literally your entire comment history is defending Russian politics and disparaging the rest of the world. Can you even speak Lithuanian, Vytautai?

For example? lol

I mostly browse /r/syriancivilwar and a few other subreddits that catch my eye.

Say what you want about Japan's role in WW2 but what this man did was an incredible act of heroism. In a way, Japan is righting its wrongs; this is a good first step

Only when it's positive news. The modern Japanese government is guilty of blatantly trying to whitewash anything negative they did either in WW2 or prior to that.

The more you know about Japan's role in this story the worse they look. They disgraced this man and I'm pretty sure he died in poverty.

When it comes to WW2, Japan is only willing to admit few things:

  1. Japan was also a victim of the war

  2. Some Japanese people did good things in occupied and colonized areas

  3. The atrocities committed by Japanese soldiers were not real

  4. Japan was ONLY defeated by the Americans

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8 points · 6 months ago

That seems to be completely and utterly irrelevant, no?

Also genocide implies slaughter. Tibet is bad but they’re not being killed off; at worst it’s ethnic cleansing, and even that’s a bit dubious as they’re still there, there just are a lot more Han people there now.

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3 points · 6 months ago

Doesn't really fit the UN definition of genocide. Is what Japan is diong there horrible? Yes, but calling it genocide lowers the impact of actual genocides.

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[deleted]
6 points · 6 months ago

Irrelevant to the conversation. We're talking about Japan, and suddenly you're talking about Tibet and China?

tell why the heck UN recognize Tibet as part of china if it's illegal?

Because it's politically expedient for many nations.

They aren't doing it well, its in the textbooks(WW2 atrocities), at least for public schools and reflected in a pretty objective light.

19 points · 6 months ago

The process hasn't come far enough to outright deny everything, but it'd misleading to suggest that just because some things aren't denied that means that nothing is denied. It's not a binary process.

As part of its effort to promote patriotic education, the present administration of Prime Minister Shinzō Abe is vocally questioning the established history of the comfort women and seeking to eliminate references to them in school textbooks. Some conservative Japanese politicians have deployed legalistic arguments in order to deny state responsibility, while others have slandered the survivors. Right-wing extremists threaten and intimidate journalists and scholars involved in documenting the system and the stories of its victims.

https://www.historians.org/publications-and-directories/perspectives-on-history/march-2015/letter-to-the-editor-standing-with-historians-of-japan

Over 300 historians eventually co-signed or made their support known for that letter and it takes some doing to get to that stage.

It hasn't happened yet, that's correct, but if you let that process go on for long enough then it'll eventually come to outright denial.

Comment deleted6 months ago(5 children)

Also how I keep hearing of Japanese tourists visiting war memorials/museums in Singapore and getting shocked by what their history classes didn't cover.

As someone who is raising a child in Japan I really worry about this. I realize all countries do it to an extent but Japanese schools seem to think they can teach a false narrative. If you look on Okinawa they're finally writing off all the atrocities they committed here, now that the generation who lived through it are dying.

Comment deleted6 months ago(0 children)

No. They're not saying that at all.

Comment deleted6 months ago(0 children)

Of course. Thanks to US-imposed rules during the establishment of the Japanese post-WW2 government, manipulating textbooks isn't so easy anymore, nonetheless the government still tries very hard.

Like five percent of schools actually had textbooks that lessened emphasis on Japanese atrocities. Politicians, like Tokyo's mayor, who were infamous for saying far right things about the Japanese empire don't represent the government.

-15 points · 6 months ago(3 children)

Can we get sources in these, so far, baseless claims?

3 points · 6 months ago

fuel embargo

Which was in response to the fuckery going on in Manchuria and such.

Uh, tell that to Koreans. Japan still denies the sex slavery that was government sanctioned.

-7 points · 6 months ago(7 children)

They do deny it. They claim that the women were prostitutes who were not abducted as opposed to sex slaves. (See: Osaka mayor who wants to end sister city relations with San Francisco for putting up a comfort women statue).

-7 points · 6 months ago(0 children)
6 points · 6 months ago

PM Abe had denied comfort women.
But it made America angry, Abe have been shutting up.

All the Japanese who protest literally every single comfort women statue including goverment officials. The Kono statement doesn't claim or admit responsibility by the government or military.

The Kono statement doesn't claim or admit responsibility by the government or military.

Yes it does.

Comfort stations were operated in response to the request of the military authorities of the day. The then Japanese military was, directly or indirectly, involved in the establishment and management of the comfort stations and the transfer of comfort women. The recruitment of the comfort women was conducted mainly by private recruiters who acted in response to the request of the military. The Government study has revealed that in many cases they were recruited against their own will, through coaxing, coercion, etc., and that, at times, administrative/military personnel directly took part in the recruitments. They lived in misery at comfort stations under a coercive atmosphere.

http://www.mofa.go.jp/policy/women/fund/state9308.html

Directly or indirectly is pretty interesting wording.

Probably an issue of mistranslation as they basically admit later on that "administrative/military personnel directly took part in the recruitments."

-17 points · 6 months ago(14 children)

The US dropped 2 nukes to end a war it didn't even want to fight. There is absolutely no equivalence of the crimes and atrocities committed by the Japanese during WW2, or even prior to that during Japanese colonialism when they invaded Korea, Taiwan etc and raped their women.

I believe Japan today is very different from what it used to be. We're all mostly the same, no matter where we come from most of us share the same compassion, hopes and dreams, but as a half-blooded Korean, I can't help but express outrage at the Japanese government's stance on a lot of their bullshit instead of just officially owning up to their mistakes.

I can't help but express outrage at the Japanese government's stance on a lot of their bullshit instead of just officially owning up to their mistakes.

i think you have the right to feel this way. of course the japanese committed some atrocities. i also understand the "for the greater good" logic of the nukes. but that doesn't really mean anything to those who suffered in hiroshima and nagasaki.

i dont like that some people are happy to take a morally higher ground on the things that happened when it was just really nasty from everybody. im not comfortable with any party coming out on top morally from the world war.

[deleted]
8 points · 6 months ago

60 million people died in WWII. Up to 3 million of those were Japanese. If you want to ignore context, it doesn’t really matter if they were nuked in Hiroshima or firebombed in Tokyo, does it? They’re still dead. The context, however, is that all of these bombings against the Japanese mainland were instigated by a war of aggression by Japan that killed up to 20 million Chinese people as well as millions of other people. You can’t start a war then cry that your innocent civilians are dying in ways that you don’t approve of.

The Allies absolutely had a moral high ground in WWII. Fuck your argument and go take it back to Yasukuni Shrine.

I think it's very dangerous to argue "moral high ground" during a war. I would call it "necessary evil" if it is done with a positive goal in mind. In this case, ending two regimes that brought about so much suffering in the misguided attempt at "becoming more powerful" was a positive goal. Many citizens that got hit during bomb raids on both Germany and Japan during the war were "innocent" to a larger degree then they were "guilty by association". Since rules weren't yet at the point we are at now, civilians, children, etc. were all fair game, so there's no use in crying over it now.

BUT, I still believe that dropping these two nukes was by no means necessary or done in good intent. The total end of the war was by that point more a technicality, and the use of the nukes was mostly a matter of muscle flexing in front of the other powers in the allied corner.

Japan was a mad dog that needed to be hit. Just because the Soviet Union took their time to free China from Imperial Japan, doesn’t mean the US needed to be as patient.

Maybe if Japan didn’t rabidly defend it’s islands a land invasion would’ve made more sense.

[deleted]
0 points · 6 months ago

I more than agree, I think this argument is dumb and doesn’t deserve to be held. I was using OP’s terms, not mine.

Go read about Unit 731, the Burma Railway, the Rape of Nanking and the stories of comfort women and see if you still think this way. All countries have done terrible shit, doesn't mean their actions at a particular point in time are morally equivalent.

There were POWs in Nagasaki that day, who survived into their '90s.

Let us also not forget that the order had been given by Japanese high command to exterminate all POWs in early September (the 5th, I think), but that was prevented by the bombs accelerating Japanese capitulation.

Painless evaporation versus mass sprees of rape, torture, pillaging and merciless genocide.

I don't know, they seem pretty equally bad to me.

-5 points · 6 months ago(0 children)

I don't think anyone is looking past the nukes. But there's a difference between a strategic action intended to prevent greater loss of life, and the rampant rape and mass murder that the Japanese government sanctioned to destroy the Chinese people.

-6 points · 6 months ago(0 children)

Meaningless to them, but incalculable to us. It's all a matter of perspective. Of course we came out morally on top. For all our faults and horrible deeds, we stopped industrial genocide and tyrannical expansionism from ethnic supremacist regimes. We did what we had to do, to win, and provide a secure future for the world at minimal cost of lives.

4 points · 6 months ago

Right-o; read up on the alternatives to the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Then come back and say if either of those two alternatives were any more palatable in the long run than deploying Fat Man and Little Boy.

Spoilers: both alternatives would result in one heckuva higher death toll than using the bomb did.

There was His Highness Jam Saheb, the King of erstwhile kingdom of Jamnagar who gave shelter to polish jews. They have a school named after him in poland.

There's a statue of the guy in LA.

I've been in japan recently and my father was stopped for a TV show interview (apparently its quite common for all kinds of channels to stop ppl all day long to do weird stuff XD )

Anyway, they asked him where he's from and when he said Israel they asked if he knows of a Japanese 'Rightous Amongst the Nations' persona that saved Jews during ww2 (they were interested in knowing if we are familiar with it)

Of course my father actually knew who they were referencing and elaborated a bit of his endeavor, they seemed to have been really impressed (then again they seem to be impressed by everything) and happy about it

But if we are honest, they were just lucky, almost no1 is familiar with his story unless his family or friend's family is related to the event, the educational system doesn't go far lengths in teaching about Rightous Amongst the Nations ppl

We mostly learn about Schindler and 2-3 more specific personas, anything more is just historical knowledge ppl learned on their own out of curiosity

How many Jews are in Japan today?

[deleted]
2 points · 6 months ago

Japan is very willing to acknowledge their Schindler. But see how they react when you ask them about their Mengeles

I remember reading about Mr. Sugihara in Mr. Wiesel's book "Night". I am compelled to say "Vaya con Dios".

[deleted]
1 point · 6 months ago

Get that man a Sabaton song!

Ironic

Yay news about my country!

-17 points · 6 months ago(0 children)
[deleted]
18 points · 6 months ago

Germany apologizes almost every day, what are you on about. They also have to deal with video games about killing Germans coming out on the best seller list every year since 1998.

0 points · 6 months ago

With the exception of Germany. Look up threads where people asked the UK to apologise for the Bengal famine for instance.

indoctrination on both sides. the japanese are told they didnt do anything wrong, and so are the west. we need to step up together, admit that everything done back then was just a huge disaster and learn the lesson before we repeat it.

and so are the west.

Have you compared German and Japanese textbooks?

Are you referring to the allies or just Germany. I'm aware the russians carried out horrible things when they started marching towards Berlin.

What was done on the western front?

-1 points · 6 months ago

There's more shady shit that happened involving European countries than just WW2... Ever heard of the Bengal famine? A few weeks back there was a thread about it, asking the UK government to apologise and everyone kept claiming that the current government has nothing to do with it etc.

Em were we not discussing ww2?

TIL Koreans are "the West."

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