Japan-China battle comes to Ottawa: Citizen article sparks diplomatic row over Second World War atrocitiesBreaking News
Bilateral relations have been souring over the past few months over the Japanese textbooks' treatment of that country's involvement in the Second World War, a tension compounded by the fight over oil drilling along disputed sea borders.
Now, with the 60th anniversary of Victory Japan Day on Monday, the politics of memory are again coming into play, specifically regarding the Japanese invasion and massacre of Nanjing, then the capital of China, during the war.
An article under the headline "The Republic of Amnesia," written by Andrew Cohen and published in the June 28 Citizen, provoked a letter from the Japanese Embassy, defending Japan's historical treatment of wartime atrocities and reiterating the country's formal apology.
In his letter to the Citizen on July 27, Masaya Fujiwara, a minister at the Japanese Embassy, wrote, "Japan squarely faces the facts of history," and reiterated what Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi said in April during his speech at the Asian-African Summit.
"Japan, through colonial rule and aggression, caused tremendous damage and suffering to the people of many countries, particularly to those of Asian nations. With feelings of deep remorse and heartfelt apology always engraved in mind, Japan has maintained ... its principle of resolving all matters by peaceful means, without recourse to use of force."
This provoked a response from the Embassy of the People's Republic of China, which said Japan's actions negate the apology.
Zuo Wenxing, the press officer for the Embassy of China in Ottawa, wrote that Mr. Fujiwara's assertion that Japan has faced up to its past is "far from convincing," and that his letter "casts further doubts about Japan's attitude to towards its past."
"Just face up to history," said Ms. Wenxing. "They have apologized, yes, but it's not translating into action."
comments powered by Disqus
- Trump Angled for Soviet Posting In the 1980s
- Places That Are Actually Worth Visiting
- JFK’s last birthday: Gifts, champagne and wandering hands on the presidential yacht
- Bozeman schools prefer kids in class on MLK Day
- Universities across the country are facing up to their past association with slavery
- Historian David Kaiser says the most exciting day of his life was JFK’s election
- Michael Bliss, Historian Who Dispelled Myths of Insulin’s Discovery, Dies at 76
- Jill Lepore: Americans Aren't Just Divided Politically, They're Divided Over History Too
- AHA joins protest of Trump’s plan for drastic cuts to the NEH
- Diane Ravitch says the Democrats paved the way for the education secretary's efforts to privatize our public schools