Japan is not Always Fun and Games

Japan’s Imperial times during the late 19th and early 20th centuries were incredibly turbulent. Japan sought power, conquest and self-sufficiency. To the people, the emperor was Kami, or God.  However, what ”God” made them do was anything but divine.

As Imperialist forces paved the way through the Asian continent, thereby putting major parts of China under Japanese control, hideous scenes were taking place. Torture, unjustified executions and rape was part of the everyday horror.

Nowadays, Japan is on speaking terms with every country in East Asia, perhaps apart from North Korea. Though, the relations between Japan and China are still quite tense. Few years ago, Chinese criticism raged as Japan’s bureau of education acknowledged history books in which the impact of Japanese forces in China had been out-slated. It stirred global debate, not in the least on the Internet.

My blogger friend Carl Pei noticed something interesting a while ago, though I felt I had to mention it someday. He saw an article on Digg.com about the Japanese Prime Minister denying atrocities comitted against the Chinese during the early 1900’s.

In the comments section on Digg.com, one could see that people reacted deeply against the content of the article but also against foolish and intolerable comments from other people. This is opinion being born, in a natural and democratic way on the internet. This shows that it is highly important with Web 2.0 (compare YouTube)! Without user-generated content and comment features, the voice of the people subsides on the net. That is why blogging is so important and this is also why people have always been writing, throughout history.

”The pen is mightier than the sword”

Read Carl’s post here: http://www.carlpei.com/where-justice-is-served/
Vi svenskar kan läsa lite om debatten här: http://harinne.wordpress.com/2007/06/30/massakern-i-nanjing-och-japans-stolthet/trackback/

2 kommentarer

  1. It’s true. I think most people in the West only talk about the German side of ugly things because it’s closer to home. And also, a lot of Americans have that guilt about the atomic bomb, so it’s not likely that people would talk about how awful the Japanese military was.
    Then, because a lot of those awful things happened to Chinese people—who generally don’t like talking about the miserable past, the stories get lost.

    I think it’s now too late to call to people’s attention these forgotten passages in history.

  2. I think these are the kinds of things that must never be forgotten. The story of the Jews during the Second World War is well known through out the world (this I hope). But there were so many other ethnicities who suffered and who also did wrong. The Americans had labor camps, similar to the Nazi-camps, for Japanese-Americans. Out of nowhere, families were broken apart and people disappeared, and a whole nation became racist toward a ”new enemy”, the Japs (a term, many today still find offensive).


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