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02 July 2007

"Hiroshima and Nagasaki" acceptable?

It has been a huge turmoil in Japanese politics. It was caused by Minister of Defense, Mr. Kyuma. In a speech he made at a University in Chiba Prefecture, he said "US dropping of atomic bombs helped Japan end the war and prevent the Soviet Union from entering in Japan, so we have to accept that."

After the criticism arose, he apologized and retracted the remark. But still the demand for his resignation is strong.

As one Japanese citizen, some point I agree with him, I do not want to blame the US for dropping atomic bombs for some reasons although these acts should never be justified. It was clearly attack on civilians. Huge number at one time.

In Hiroshima and Nagasaki in total, more than 200,000 people were killed. The Nuclear Era started by them.

But the war was in fact started by us, Japan, we started the war in China and then Japan had to face economic embargo by allied nations including the U.S. We've killed so many civilians in China and other Asian nations. After the economic sanctions was implemented, Japan attacked on Pearl Harbor.

We haven't done enough to compensate for the loss of the victims like "comfort women" who were forced to become sexual slaves for Japanese soldiers. This issue has been on debate in U.S. Congress lately. The resolution to demand Japanese government to apologize and ackknowlege this inhumane act.

Japan has not done enough to make up for the past aggression. In order to accuse U.S. for dropping atomic bombs, we, must have done what we have to do. We failed.

However, Mr. Kyuma, should have never made such remarks. That is the insult to the victims of the atomic bombs and considered justification of the use of nuclear weapons. Nuclear weapons should be all eliminated. No matter what cause the nation provoke the war, attacks on civilians should never be done.   

21 February 2007

Congressman Honda is doing the right thing!

Congressman Mike Honda speaks on legistlation urging Japan to apologize for war-era sexual slavery.

There were once women called "Ianfu" meaning Comfort Women in Japanese. They were focibly taken to battlefield to be sex slaves for Japanese soldiers.

The congressman is trying to let our government make official apology to those women.

In fact, Japanese government did in 1993, but very grudgingly. The government at that time gave some speech of the apology and has made compensations to those women but by civil donation not by our tax.

 The textbooks barely mentioned such history. The right wingers including some ruling party's politicians deny such women were forced to do so by the army and claim the women are all liars and making accusation for money.

They are doing the same things on Nanking Massacre which Japanese army slaughtered hundreds of thousands of Chinese including POWs and civilians in Nanking, the capitol of China in 1937.

 I am afraid that I do not want such legistlation pass in US Congress because this is something our country should have done a long time ago so that no other country would claim Japan has not done enough of such matters. Unfortunately, we failed. Germans has succeeded in this and recovered relationship with former enemies, France and Britain. It is illegal to deny hollocaust in public. If you say that there was no mass-murder of Jews in Germany, you are put into jail.

Well, but I do support Mr. Honda's action. He is Japanese American. I just guess if he is doing this because he does not want to be considered that he is too gentle to his anscestral country. This should come from his childhood memory of Internment Camp. I know the tales of Japanese American during the war between Japan and the US.  

Japanese should reflect on the past whether it is comfortable or uncomfortable to look to the future and recover relationship with neighboring nations. Maybe the legistlation would give a great chance for this.  

13 January 2007

"Letters from Iwojima" Can't believe Dirty Harry made it!

The movie is making box-office record here in Japan.

 I went to see the movie. The story is about Japanese soldiers in historical battle place of WWII, Iwojima Island.

I was really impressed. I cannot believe the Hollywood provides almost all Japanese language movie to us.

Clint Eastwood was a director for the film. How come he did it, I wondered.

The movie taught us how life is precious and to live as long as you can is beautiful.

The movie clearly described dark history of Japan. How people are sacrificed in the name of patriotism. That kind of things is gradually reviving today's Japan. Like, not setting up a national flag at home means "non-Japanese."

 Because it was made by Americans, we could see our own history from objective perspective.



18:55 Posted in Film, US-Japan relationship | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: War

30 December 2006

Short Novel: The Flight to Tokyo, Chapter 1

A story of a B-29 pilot who time-travels from the war-time Tokyo to present-time.

At midnight of March 10, 1945, James Austin was flying over the enemy's capital, Tokyo.

He was in US Air Force's bomber aircraft, B29. The mission was to bomb the city to give the enemy shock and owe. This is important mission to end the war.

Austin was 21 year old pilot, from Conneticut. Over there his parents, Tom, Jane and 10 year-old sister who had been suffering from asthma live. His parents told him his sister would die before he would come back home. That was what the docter told them. So he had to survive in the war. He would be the only child in his family.

Grisping control gear, he was thinkng of his sister, whom he called Katie. She had had problems with her health since she was born. He and his parents had known that she wouldn't live long.
He gave her a present before he joined the army. It was a doll. Very pretty doll like Katie. Katie named the doll "Clara."
He remembered Katie said "Jim, please come back alive. I will live too." Then he promised he would live and when he comes back he would give her another doll as the sisiter for Clara. Katie said she would be excited to meet Clara's sister. Katie told Jim Clara needs something common with her sister. That means Jim had to buy a doll that fits the condition for Clara's sister, which Katie requested. But there is no hope for Katie to meet Clara's sister.

No hope to live. The same words should be delivered to the people beneath him. He and his colleagues in the army called them "Japs." His plane was going to drop firebombs onto their residents. Wooden houses that are easily burned down. Women and children are part of the target. But for the army, they are enemy Japs who do not deserve their lives.
Jime never thought it was cruel thing to do. Jim read the newspaper articles which describes how brutaly Japanese army slaughtered Chinese civilians including women and children by bombing from the air and on the ground. Bombing of Chongqing, and Rape of Nanking. Japanese army have done such terrible things. Japan attacked Pearl Harbour. It was a sneak attack. They killed thousands of American soldiers. 

Now none of the people below him should be considered non-combat personels.

"Open the hatch. It is show-time." The captain said. The plane was in the formation of air-raid with hundreds of planes dropping the bombs. As co-pilot of the plane, Jim pulled the lever to open the hatch. But he found something is strange. The plane is not dropping the bombs.
The hatch is not open. He pushed back the lever and tried pulling it again. But it didn't work.
"What is wrong?" said the captain.
"The hatch is not open. It cannot work, sir." Jim replied.
"Ok. maybe we should lower the altitude, then that should work when the hatch is a little more strained."
"But sir, we shouldn't get away from the formation. And it is dangerous. It would be easier for the enemy to hit us by their ground fires." Jime felt fear.
"Are you saying we should go back home with heavy bombs loaded while others fly back with empty stomach?"
"We are soldiers, we should accomplish this honorable mission. We cannot get away from it."
"All right, Captain." said Jim. He agreed with Captain's words. Totally. The whole crews should risk their lives for the cause. To end the war and bring the victory for the United States of America.  
The plane with 11 crews including co-pilot, Jim, Captain and other members lowered the altitude. Of course they turned off from the formation so that the plane wouldn't be hit by the bombs coming from the above.
They confirmed they were in the right position. What they saw above through the ceiling window was only dark sky. What they saw beneath through the floor window was burning city. A lot of houses and building seemed to be on fire. Jim wondered if they should drop any more bombs onto the ground when the city had got already enough damage.
Jim pulled the gear. He heard the big sound. The sound of hatch opening and bombs dropping.
The whole crew were relieved to hear the sound. They have accomplished the mission.
Then it was the time to go back to where they came from.
But suddenly they heard another big sound, Bang. Then they felt the plane was shaking and smelled the fire. Right after that, they felt the heat. They found their plane was burning.
Jim realized the sound was made by ground fire hit on the plane.
The plane lost the balance. Soon the fire surrounded Jim and Captain.
"Oh, my god." said the Captain. "We got hit."
Jim saw the captain burning beside himself. Then he realized fire was covering on him.
He pressed the bottom as he learned at Air Force Academy. It was what a pilot should do to evacuate the plane. Then he did.
He escaped from the plane. Soon he found himself floating in the air by the parachute.
He was going down slowly. He saw the plane that he was in falling down burning. Of course it was dropping very quickly because it had no parachute with it.
He had no idea of what to do next. Where he would land was the enemy line. The enemy's capitol. After he would land on the ground, he would be caught or shot by the enemy, Japs.

He saw what was beneath his feet. Fires. Very hot he felt. It was getting hotter and hotter.
He thought he would be dead before the enemy would find him.
The worse thing happened. The leashes of the parachute were suddenly cut off.
He fell down with no parachute. But strangely he did not fall not as quickly as the gravity pulls.
He felt something was trying to absorb him. He did not know what it was.
He felt he was going to land with no harm.
Then he landed. He was alive with no injuries. He bent his knees putting his hands on the ground, actually it was wooden floor. He found himself in a house. He then found himself surrounded by the fire. He felt very very hot.
"Oh, no, I am in the burning house. The house of Japs." He shouted in his mind.
He stood up and trying to find a way to get out of the house.
Fire and smoke were the only thngs he could see.
"Tasukete, tasukete." A voice of woman was heard to his ears. He couldn't understand what she was saying but he easily assumed it was a cry for help.
He looked around. He saw a woman lying just a few steps from him. Then he also saw the doorway to get out of the house. He wanted to run away as soon as possible. There is no time to take care of a woman, especially the enemy's woman.
But he realized he had to because he was a gentleman. He held up a woman with his arms. He then ran to the doorway.
He suddenly got out of the house and the fire. The outside was much cooler. He felt winter air.
He got on the road. He then found himself surrounded by the people looking at him very seriously.
"Oh my god, Japs are looking at me." He said to himself in his mind.

He thought that he was going to die. Then he fainted. A woman on his arms was dropped. Jim lied down beside her on the road.

To be continued to Chapter 2.

The story is updated monthly, basically. Sometimes delayed.

This novel is copyright of author of this blog, Masagata.