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What’s Up with Abe’s Egging China On to War?

Mr. Abe has done a lot to put Asia back on the path to War: what with re-arming Japan, making a mockery of Japan’s Pacifist Constitution, and overflowing rhetoric about the dangers of a rising China.

Just last week, I was perusing through Asia Times, reading an article by Peter Lee on the TPP, when I noticed the following picture, and a comment from a reader.

Abe in cockpit of Japanese air force aircraft

Abe in cockpit of Japanese air force aircraft

Reader Jack Temujin astutely noted:

Abe purposely placed himself in a cockpit of an aircraft numbered 731. After the notorious bio-chem, germ warfare facility Unit 731 during ww2. And we supposed to forgive and forget Japanese war crime?

Is this for real?

Visiting shrines is one thing.  I mean I sort of understand the logic that one terrorist is another’s freedom fighters.  That is, if the U.S. can get away with nuking Japan at the end of WWII for no reason other than to send a message to the world, particularly the Soviet Union, and not call their soldiers and leaders war criminals, 1 why must Japan owe up to its own transgressions throughout Asia?  If the U.S. can have places of national memorials such as the Arlington cemetery that house men who fought for the South (who presumptively fought for slavery, which is considered everywhere today as a crime against humanity), why can’t Japan have its own place for national remembrance? 2  If the U.S. can continue to honor its own founding fathers – most of whom owned slaves and slaughtered native American Indians without any impunity, why can’t Japan worship its own leaders – leaders who fought for Japan and who honored Japan?

But giving China the middle finger by posing in a 731 jet?  What is the honor of that?

I know that much of Japan’s war crimes have been covered up and that Japan didn’t do it alone, but with the help of the U.S.

Yet … is Abe really that obtuse about history?  Is he really egging the Chinese on by spitting on the millions Japan murdered in WWII?  Does he really want war?

I am so flabbergasted I don’t know what to think…

Notes:

  1. According to Major General Curtis LeMay, “The War would have been over in two weeks without the Russians entering and without the atomic bomb. The atomic bomb had nothing to do with the end of the War at all.”
  2. The Yasukuni shrine – long a point of friction between China and Japan – for example is a shrine established in 1869 to pronounce the supremacy of the Shinto faith, to assert the divinity of the Japanese Emperor, and to uphold the centrality of the Imperial institution in Japan’s national identity and polity.
  1. N.M.Cheung
    October 16th, 2015 at 07:34 | #1

    Thanks for clearing some history lessons which most do not know. Most Chinese probably do not know about Unit 731. As for Abe, he’s just a little man with Napoleon complex. Japanese nationalists whom knew about the history of the 2 atomic bombs bore hatred toward U.S. which they know are helpless to avenge. The only possible solution is to egg on a war with China while servilely kowtows to U.S.. Japan always has a superior/inferior complex toward China, where their culture derived from, yet Oedipal complex, first dismissal of the weakness of the “Sick Man of East Asia”, now grown to beyond the reach of Japan.

  2. ersim
    October 17th, 2015 at 10:04 | #2

    It’s very pathetic how Japanese right wing nationalism is on an american leash.

  3. October 24th, 2015 at 11:35 | #3

    I know most people would be indignant when someone pour salt into old wound. However, we must asked ourselves what has Abe accomplished? In my view, he is simply trying to make a name for himself in local Japanese politics, and thus secure more votes for his party. Have his action actually done anything to strengthen Japan’s economy, world political standing, moral high ground?

    In reality, Abe has pushed its three major neighbours further away and made Japan further under the leash of American war interest. When we see something like this, shouldn’t we rejoice? By contrast, China is busy making deal with its One Belt, One Road initiative. China’s high speed rail has won contracts in Indonesia, US over its Japanese competitors.

    PS: I would be wary about Le May’s claim. This is a guy who advised Kennedy to start an all out war with Soviet Union during the Cuban crisis.

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