It seems inevitable that Japan would start whitewashing its textbooks its WWII atrocities.
Now the word “comfort Women” has been removed from High School textbooks and instead replaced by South Korean “individuals victimized by Japan during the war seeking to file lawsuits in Japanese courts to seek apology and damages.” like these people are a bunch of money grubbers. Not to mention that Japan want to portray themselves as liberators in Asia from American, European, French and Dutch colonialism.
What’s surprising is that Japan not only seeks to dilute the issue of the atrocities during WWII, but they want to do it to American textbooks as well.
Rather a surprising move: “Japan’s foreign ministry requested that McGraw-Hill delete a passage containing a reference to comfort women from a text on world history used by high schools in California. The passage says that Japan’s imperial army “forcibly recruited, conscripted and dragooned as many as 200,000 women aged 14 to 20” to serve in military brothels.”
Also Japan goes after its own citizens who want to publish truths about comfort women issue.
Even its own citizens are targeted when trying to write about the ‘controversial’ comfort women issue. A Japanese journalist is being sued for defamation and personally threatened because he has written articles about Comfort women.
In an effort to rearm themselves and want to remove article 9 out of its constitution, Japan want to relive its ‘glory days’ as Imperial Japan and remove any references of atrocities during the last World War is dangerous indeed.
Mister Unknown says
Lol… I wonder whether Americans will be up in arms marching & chanting “Je suis McGraw-Hill”.
Every country has the right to define its own history. History textbooks are an internal affair.
Journalists who do not conform to local laws and local procedures deserve punishment. I think we can all agree on that — laws must be followed.
While the history of Imperial Japan is heinous, it’s not the place of foreigners to tell others how to discuss history. Thanks to the internet, there is widespread information about Japanese atrocities, and this information is easily accessible. I have no experience with Japanese internet, perhaps some users here do have experience — is Japanese internet heavily censored with blocks on sensitive sites, such as about Imperial Japan’s history? If not, then there is little cause for concern. Most high school textbooks all over the world gloss over embarrasing historical periods…
Further, as quoted in the article, “But at a meeting with officials from the Japanese consulate in New York, McGraw-Hill refused to change the passage, saying it was “based on historical facts,” according to the Sankei Shimbun.” The pressure on the USA-publisher was denied, and USA textbooks will still discuss the issue as is considered appropriate for the age-group (high school, I’m guessing). So kudos to the USA publisher for standing up to this!
“Every country has the right to define its own history. History textbooks are an internal affair.”
So does this mean that South Africa was right to have Apartheid since it is an internal matter? Obviously not.
Unless a country prefer to has no interaction with the outside world, then the history it teaches and believes need to adhere to universal human values. Of course politics are never neutral but if the teaching of history is simply incubator for future conflicts then it needs to be openly discussed.
For example, if Argentina continue to teach that the Malvinas are illegally occupied by the British than it would be source for future confrontation. Likewise the British can’t pretend the Argentineans are illegally coveting British land. Ditto, the geography and historical teaching of China, Japan, Korea, Vietnam etc.
I can say the same for Nazi Germany on how they interpret its History Books on how Jews are interior and punishing Germans who are sympathetic towards Jews is an “internal affair.” What is considered legal in Japan doesn’t mean that it is right. I never said China should intervene in Japan’s laws, nor is what China is doing.
Morever, recently Merkel gave a speech about the 70th anniversary of the discovery of Auschwitz. She mentions about what Nazi Germany did to Jews brought great Shame to Germany. Merkel don’t have to give a speech about it, but instead teach its people that Nazi Germany was trying to ‘liberate its people from Jews’ but instead did the very opposite. Personally, I would like to see Abe to make a speech about what Imperial Japan did in China and other asian countries brought great shame in Japan. Do you think people Japan think what they did was wrong? But how Japan rewrites history is that Japan is trying to ‘liberate’ Asia from colonial rule. Sorry, Caixin, you’re very wrong there.