Japan should give formal apology for wartime aggression, says historianHistorians in the News
One of the issues that arise every year on the anniversary of Japan's unconditional surrender is whether a formal apology will be issued.
Like past years, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has vowed to adhere to the road of peace and not repeat the calamity of war.
However, the word 'sorry' was not included in the remarks.
Kurt Piehler, director of the Institute of World War II and the Human Experience with Florida State University, says a formal apology from Japan would go a long way toward creating a lasting peace in the region.
"I hope that there can be a formal apology. I hope there can be peace treaties between China and Japan, and between Japan and Russia. I hope we could have a model like the model between Germany and Israel where there have been a great deal of reconciliation, and part of that reconciliation was a formal apology."
At the same time, Piehler says domestic politics are still a major factor holding the current Japanese government back.
"I would agree that an apology would be the right thing to do. And I also think in the long-term interest and stability in East Asia would be a very good thing to do for diplomatic relations for Japan. I just wish Japan could really put World War II behind it and really come to a full reckoning. I would say the left Japan has a full reckoning, and Japanese are very divided over the legacy of World War II."
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