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Japan out to distort history

Updated: 2014-01-14 07:27
By James C. Hsiung ( China Daily)

Shinzo Abe continues to disown the country's dark past by visiting the Yasukuni Shrine and doctoring textbooks

In the ongoing Sino-Japanese conflict, we have again heard people asking Japan to atone for its war crimes. Many years ago, one such plea came from John Rabe, a German who witnessed the 1937 Rape of Nanking (Nanjing) but later declined to testify at the Allied Tokyo Trials, saying that, "judgment must be spoken only by (the Japanese) own nation." Rabe's plea is touching, almost noble. But the Japanese nation (led by a succession of postwar prime ministers) is not the same as the German nation.

After the end of World War II, the Germans (and their government leaders) have shown genuine remorse and repentance. This can be seen from their aggregate payment of more than $90 billion as compensation to Holocaust victims and their survivors to atone for the Germans' collective guilt. More evidence is the open teaching and discussion in schools of the history of Nazi Germany's war crimes.

Japan out to distort history

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