the Symposiums on the 70th Anniversary of
Head of the Defense Counsel for the Lawsuits of Chinese War Victims
1. Right Wing Trends in
As for the school textbooks, every textbook used to mention "comfort women," sex slavery by Japanese Army in World War II. At present, however, school textbooks have no statement on historical facts of Japanese wrongdoing. Textbooks also tend to justify the Asian and Pacific War from 1931 to 1945.
Not only textbooks but also books and articles were published to say that there was no Nanjing Incident at all. From this point of view, lawsuits are being raised against people, (for instance, the lawsuit on defamation of character against Ri Shuei, the similar lawsuit against Ka Shukukin, the lawsuit on defamation of character against Katsuichi Honda for writing about One Hundred Slaughters Incident.)
Concentrated attack is made concerning Nanjing Massacre because the right wing people think that if they only could cross out Nanjing Incident, they can erase every inhuman behaviors of Japanese Army during World War II. Right wing people think this Incident is the most important key in beautifying the past wars.
hoisting Rising-Sun Flags and playing and singing Kimigayo are forced on pupils
and teachers. At
At schools in
Rising-Sun Flag and Kimigayo is considered the most important tool for
implanting patriotic spirit into children.
This kind of implanting patriotism means teaching children falsely that
Quite recently a former teacher was invited to the graduation ceremony. He appealed to the parents before the ceremony that the ceremony in which the teachers are punished for not standing up for Kimigayo is quite extraordinary, and he pleaded with them not to stand up and sing Kimigayo. He was prosecuted for saying that and was found guilty at Tokyo District Court for forcible obstruction of business.
Not only at school but also at many places people cannot say what they think freely. It is quite deplorable that Japan can not be said to be a country of democracy.
In the lawsuits of Chinese war victims, many judgments recognize the fact of wrongdoings of Japan but deny the legal responsibility. It is totally against the legal justice that the judgments dismiss the appeals while they recognize the wrongdoings of Japanese government and army in the past. The courts toe the Government's line obediently. It is likely that the courts are also influenced by the right wing trend. They are, however, not accepted by international society.
2. Plan of the Symposiums on the 70th Anniversary of Nanjing Incident
We history scholars, NGO people and lawyers, are thinking of holding a series of symposiums in Japan, China, USA, Singapore, other Asian countries, Germany and U.K. from September through December in 2007.
The objectives of the symposiums are as follows:
Firstly, as I stated, the Nanjing Massacre is the target of attack by right wing politicians and scholars as well as by not a few public people. Therefore, it is necessary to restrain this trend. The success of the above mentioned overseas symposiums will help to open people's eyes open towards global views. We think that the symposiums in Japan need to gather important scholars and highly educated people. They will also be of benefit to universities in Japan which could offer lectures by international experts. The survivors of wrongdoings by Japanese government and military should also be invited to participate in our events.
Secondly, we take up the Nanjing Incident because it is a symbolic incident of inhuman, violent acts by Japanese government and military during World War II. As we take up the incident as a symbol, we will also take up the massacre in Singapore when we hold a symposium in Singapore.
Thirdly, this kind of symposium will promote mutual understanding and friendship among the citizens in China, Japan and other Asian countries. It will help to improve the political relations, which are said to have become quite "cold" between Japan and China and also between Japan and Korea. Building up friendly relations between Japan and China and also between Japan and Korea could promote political stability, economic cooperation, and joint effort for solving environmental issues.
Fourthly, mankind experienced two tragic world wars and resolved not to make another war. Nevertheless, we have wars and racial as well as religious disputes across the world, resulting in massacres and mass destruction. Humanity heartily wishes that in the 21st century massacres and mass destruction should no longer happen. In order to accomplish that, each nation, each people, and each tribe should acknowledge one's wrong-doings, apologize sincerely, and compensate for those wrong-doings. Only that will dissolve mutual misunderstanding and distrust, and help to build up true reconciliation.
It will be really profitable, in accomplishing humanity's wish, that people in Japan should refresh their memories of the Nanjing Incident and other violent deeds, analyzing their true causes. If we could do that, and make the people, including the government, think the same way, we would be a good model of humanity along with the people in Germany.
We fully realize that there would be challenges in holding this kind of symposiums successfully. We would like to overcome the difficulties and succeed in holding the symposiums. We firmly believe that the success of the symposiums will bring an enormous impact on the making of a peaceful world.