Japan diving shop sorry after customers pose on sunken U.S. warship


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We shared (the photo) in the hopes that it would show the appeal of the diving spot," a representative of the diving shop said. "We did not expect any protests”.

That says it all.

15 ( +24 / -9 )

This is to be expected by divers that are nothing more than tourists.

I would be extremely interested in going on that dive, but the last thing on my mind would be to pose sitting on a cannon.

8 ( +16 / -8 )

2 ( +5 / -3 )

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Utterly insensitive and distasteful.


-16 ( +17 / -33 )

Dive shops had better get their gear squared away. Men died on that ship. It's not a wreckage, it's a tomb, a memorial that couldn't be. This isn't the first time dive shops have Fd up. I've seen videos several years back with tourists having no disregard to the ecosystem and scraping the live coral with their hands and fins. They'll even take tourists out for a dive even when the sea conditions aren't good resulting in accidents or deaths. Every summer there's some kinda crap that they're responsible for. Really gives a bad name for the "real" divers.

-12 ( +11 / -23 )

I see no offense in the photo. I do not understand why anyone is bothered by it. Divers have had their photos taken on countless sunken ships. This is just another. People just look for reasons to be offended. Lighten up.

29 ( +48 / -19 )

They don't appear to be "on" the sunken ship. Are there other pictures?

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

How many innocent Okinawans died from the US soldiers? Where's the uproar there?

-5 ( +24 / -29 )

I see no offense in the photo.

Did you actually read the article? Me thinks not, as this is not the photo in question, it was taken down from their site. You would have known that if you actually read it.

12 ( +20 / -8 )

Men died on that ship. It's not a wreckage, it's a tomb

Nearly every wreck in history involves dead sailors. The US Navy sunk over 600 Japanese warships and 2000 merchant ships during the course of the war. Should they all be off limits to divers? Or just the American ships?

7 ( +22 / -15 )


Obviously you know nothing about diving.

To answer your question in a word: “Yes”

Any ship or vessel that was attacked and destroyed during an armed conflict IS illegal to enter or remove anything from.

5 ( +16 / -11 )

The “male member” who took offense is a “male tool” who needs to lighten up. I have been wreck diving in Truk lagoon and taken numerous photos on and in the wrecks of Japanese planes and ships. It what divers do. On my next dive trip to Okinawa, I am going to specifically dive down to that ship and post the photos I take on the net in the hopes that a steady stream ‘disrespect’ might help this immature and oversensitive brat grow up.

-1 ( +19 / -20 )

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Way back in the day I got a basic diving certificate. I suspect there are many here with way more experience and would invite them to weigh in.

One of the things specifically mentioned in the wreck diving module (apart from don’t go inside when diving alone) was if it’s a warship, it’s most likely also a grave - treat it with respect or even better, leave it alone.

This is basic dive knowledge.

13 ( +18 / -5 )

I've done a few wreck dives, mostly in Palawan in the Phillipines. A couple of Japanese freighters and a minor warship like minelayer, It was a long time ago and don't really remember. I've also been to a snorkelable wreck off the east coast of Bali, and I heard there's a good one between the two Perhentian Islands at the north end of Malaysia.

Anyway, no attention was paid to "Japanese people died on this". It was more like "can we go in the cabins?"

5 ( +11 / -6 )

Was this the dive shop that discovered the wreck in 2001?

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

I acknowledge that ships sunk in battle are war graves.

But I can see that the passing of time affects the issue.

Are Greek ships from early history still war graves ?

Or archeological sites underwater.

6 ( +13 / -7 )


Did you not notice how basically anything goes, in the Philippines?

(not just in the case of diving)

4 ( +8 / -4 )

What's next? Diving at the USS Arizona in Hawaii by Japanese tourists?

7 ( +12 / -5 )


Any ship or vessel that was attacked and destroyed during an armed conflict IS illegal to enter or remove anything from.

I don't think there's any suggestion that the divers were entering the ship or salvaging artifacts from it. They were just photographing themselves next to the wreck. Your link talks about certain peculiar laws in the US, but none are applicable to wrecks in Japanese waters. This ship isn't a Japanese national park, and you don't need any permit to dive it or take photos as far as I know. If they had actually done anything illegal, wouldn't you expect Japanese authorities to already be involved?

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

Very little will come of this, the wreck is not too deep to dive down to, it's been a popular diving spot for decades, yeah it is a tomb but probably since society is getting more woke, divers will increase in the future. It's of course not proper, but in today's society it seems few people care or show much respect for the dead, heck many people show even less respect for the living, just watch our so called World Leaders for proof of little respect for the living. Don't forget to get your effective and safe Jab, and wear your mask, and when they offer you a digital ID, grab it quick.

2 ( +9 / -7 )

It is not so much a 'grave' as, NOW, a monument to foolishness. In the U.S., people visit the Gettysburg Battlefield knowing they are walking in the blood mixed dirt of those who were murdered there by their psychopathic 'leaders' on BOTH sides but they do so in respect of the horrors that took place there. Visitors to this ship will do more to further the memory of those sixty who died on the ship and the terrified young teenager forced to cause it than the ephemeral memories of soon to be senile old people who have nothing better about which to complain. That young people, especially, should visit such sites and understand, if even a little, the foolishness they represent, then sites such as these, and those sacrificed who may still reside in them, will serve a nobler purpose that ever they served in their own time.

0 ( +10 / -10 )

Reading the article the dive shop didn't understand the issue. They don't want people to dive the area not just take photos.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

It's as insensitive as the idiots taking selfies on the River Kwai Bridge, which happens daily.

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

Are Greek ships from early history still war graves ?

Short answer, did someone die on it in battle and are their remains likely interred?

If the answers are “yes” then yes, it is.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

For contemporary Japanese, that behavior would be their best commemoration. Take Kancolle for example, making their ancestor's fleet that fought desperately to protect its country and met a tragic end be a lolicon girls club... How respectful!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The picture showed three people, including young women, sitting side by side on the ship's cannon, striking poses such as spreading their arms, and was uploaded to the shop's social media website in late June.

This is the offensive photo. Viewer discretion is advised.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

@Nemo. I agree with your post about respect. My diving school defined “respect” as not taking anything nor damaging anything at a dive site or in the ocean period. My opinion is that expecting divers to visit a wreck site and not take photos is like expecting as foodie to go to a restaurant and not eat. I am guessing that the whiner complaining about this photo is not actually a diver as my experience has been that the diving community as a whole come down quite heavily on divers who do disrespect diving sites and I haven’t seen or heard anything about this “incident.” Just my two cents.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

It’s been 80 years people, time to move on. I understand Americans are brainwashed about military stuff, but exercising critical thinking should be a must for every person on the planet, regardless of nationality.

-10 ( +5 / -15 )

so where is that picture we have to feel sorry about?

-7 ( +6 / -13 )

Much ado about nothing.

It was 80 years ago this ship sank. The USA and Japan are now best friends and allies, working together to promote freedom and democracy. This is the important thing - not the historical fact they opposed each other for four short years so long ago.

-5 ( +7 / -12 )

Desert Tortoise: "I see no offense in the photo. I do not understand why anyone is bothered by it."

The offense is that there was zero thought involved. While I doubt any ill-will was intended at all, can you imagine if the shoe were on the other foot and you had a bunch of Americans at ground zero of Hiroshima or Nagasaki with huge smiles and flexing, giving thumbs up, etc.? Heck, at the Kamikaze museum in Chiran, you aren't even allowed to take photos (which for Japan is extremely rare since tourists from Japan take pictures of EVERYTHING, be they sacred, taboo, or what not) because it would be disrespectful to the dead. Try snapping a photo of the salvaged kamikaze plane remains, let alone one of you smiling and arms stretched out. Maybe you would just want to show it's a good tourist spot, like this company wanted to.

Or better yet, if it had been a Japanese ship or kamikaze planes in the sea that they were diving around, would the same photos have been taken?

-3 ( +8 / -11 )

I’ve seen pictures of soldiers posing for photos that are a lot worse in live war zones. No one complained about them though.

-2 ( +8 / -10 )

I have never been scuba diving

At which point one stops commenting on things one has no knowledge of.

-8 ( +3 / -11 )

I do find it really strange this sentence. "The male member of the USS Emmons Association, So the women members are not concern ? or the is no females members, I assume that there is no females members because if there was, they also would be just as concern as the males. So when read this I get confused and my attention is taken away from the article. I assume the writer of this, is a person so hang up on gender classing, that they can not se the mistake, So to clarify are the female members just concern JT ? are we to take it that the female member do not care ?

-10 ( +2 / -12 )

 a photograph online that showed its customers posing on the shipwreck of a U.S. warship from World War II sparked a protest from a member of an organization comprised of family members and friends of former crew, it became known Saturday.

Whada loser. Nothing better to do than this?

Stupid diving shop too but I’m guessing a lot of their customers are US so out with the principals and comply to one loser.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

In Palau it was popular among Chinese snorkelers to raise a Chinese flag on the wreck of the IJN Iro. Some Chinese tour conductors advertised that tour for that express purpose. “Show your patriotism! Raise a flag on a Japanese warship.” Never mind it was sunk by the US Navy…. The Koror tourism bureau banned them for desecration of a war grave, and since the entire of Palau is a designated National park, unlawful use of national property.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Is not dead body , why can't take, I see no offend. So people shouldn't take picture in front of the Atomic Bomb Dome destroyed building in Hiroshima too !

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

That’s rich lol coming from the self righteous Americans

-10 ( +3 / -13 )

That’s rich lol coming from the self righteous Americans

As one who has dived the Emmons many times, I have personally witnessed active-duty US military personnel in a "guts pose" at the wrecksite.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

These sunken naval ships lost in war are sunken tombs, like the USS Arizona at Pearl Harbor. However, the same also holds true for the naval ships or submarines of all countries, so divers should respect the fallen who gave their Ives for their countries.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

We have to "take offense". Nobody else can give it to us.

I'm pretty certain that none of those people diving were in the Japanese military during WW2, so let them have their fun and some memories.

I'm not offended and wouldn't be if someone were dancing on my parent's graves either, unless it was a very specific act against them as individuals. Normal people in the cemetery? Whatever. Be sad, if that's why you are there - or be happy if it is a nice day and you are happy.

Mom always said, "Life is for the living. Morn, then move on with your life."

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Disrespectful and abhorent. The diving shop should be ashamed of its actions.

-4 ( +5 / -9 )

“You should respect death and respect the dead, not out of fear, but because it’s the proper human thing to do.”

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

All war time wrecks, regardless of nationality, must be treated as tombs and with respect. Same goes for War Memorials be it Hiroshima or Pearl Harbor.

1 ( +8 / -7 )

Looked at the photo. Hard to understand why it would be offensive to anyone. The divers are not making offensive gestures.

3 ( +8 / -5 )

@M3M3M3 thanks for the link to the photo.

I see nothing offensive or disrespectful with the photo.

The male member of the USS Emmons Association, which commemorates the warship and honors the memory of 60 shipmates who perished in the sinking, objected to the photograph, noting in a statement on June 27 that the act was disrespectful.

Old git got nothing better to do with his time if they were placing signs or breaking stuff then that could be seen as being disrespectful bit posing for a photo come on the ocean by itself isn't doing more damage to the ship.

If they (USS Emmons Association) really have an issue with it then they should remove it (the Ship) from Okinawa immediately. Take it back to the US I am sure the 60 shipmates would feel better if they were returned home.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

There are many photos of the wreck including ones with divers. There are still bombs/torpedos on the wreck. Also a plate with the names of the crew who died.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

@Jonathan Prin

Try robbing the Titanic without licence, and don´t come whining then. Same applies to any shipwreck. Rules apply even in the depth of seas.

Actually the titanic is in international waters and was "Robbed" numerous times over the years it has only been "protected" since November 18th 2019.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

World Diving Site


"Even now, there are many explosives such as torpedoes (detonators and fuzes), gunpowder, explosives, and shells. Do not touch or move it. In addition, it is prohibited to withdraw or take it home."

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Visiting such a site is not necessarily disrespectful. It depends on what the posers do there.

I’ve always wanted to visit Highgate Cemetery and, among other graves and sepulcres of historical personages, view Karl Marx’s monument. Posing beside the grave is fine. Urinating on it for the camera would be grossly disrespectful (Marx couldn’t have known the destruction his self-proclaimed followers would wreak in his name).

It’s the same with sunken ships.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

It's a war grave from the biggest conflict in history. Proper respect needs to be shown. The photos may not be offensive but the posing was deemed to be and it would be like going to the Atomic Bomb Dome in Hiroshima and sitting on it while showing the peace or victory sign. It would be in very poor taste and you know if that photo made it into the public domain, people in Japan would not like it.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

As a scuba diver, what right do these people have to say what divers can do? They throw billions of tones of plastic in the sea and they don’t winge about that.

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

They complain, but

I've been to the Hiroshima peace memorial museum twice pre COVID-19. Lots of tourists. The only ones who were shouting and laughing and basically ignoring most of the exhibits were Americans. Maybe a Canadian or too. I know because I talked to some of them outside in their rows of tour buses. The majority were so proud of the nukings.

so this happened last century. Enjoy wreak diving, I’ve been to around thirty.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

Online there are many photos of divers "posing" at the wreck so why was this one so upsetting to some?

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Did you actually read the article? Me thinks not, as this is not the photo in question, it was taken down from their site. You would have known that if you actually read it.

I'm a Navy veteran. I had parents and uncles in that war. My mom was part of the Manhattan Project and an uncle had a lifelong disability from fighting the IJA in lovely places like Guadacanal. So what if some diver posed on a sunken US Navy ship? They didn't do anything to disparage the dead crew. Nothing was desecrated. It's just a photo. Take a deep breath.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Heck, we deliberately sink old worn out Navy ships to create artificial reefs as habitat for all kinds of creatures, and for divers to dive and take photos of.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Any ship or vessel that was attacked and destroyed during an armed conflict IS illegal to enter or remove anything from.

First of all, this is completely ignorant and untrue. I have wreck diving certification and have dived many US and Japanese wrecks, there’s no international law or scuba police enforcing it and it would depend on each country. Secondly, divers taking a picture while they’re down there is not necessarily disrespectful, the only reason they’re making a big deal about it is because it was Japanese divers on an American wreck.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

Divers have been divingvthe wreck for decades. There are a lot of photos of people sitting on it. The deck is just below decompression dive levels. It's not a beginner diver site at all. Someobe just wantedvto have a moan about it.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

I’m willing to bet you didn’t take those photos while “sitting” on them. I’d almost guarantee you didn’t.

And you would be wrong. I had photos taken of me and others while I sat in the wing of an American bomber and on the side of the Shikoku Maru, both in Truk lagoon with a dive team that consisted of Americas, Japanese as well as Truk islanders.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Most of the comments should take a chill pill. The bloke apologised and deleted the image. Any normal person would except his apology and be done with it.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

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