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Japanese navy veteran recalls Pearl Harbor 75 years on

24 Comments
By Shingo Ito

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© 2016 AFP

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Hiroshima, the Japanese city pulverised by a U.S. atom bomb the U.S. dropped two atomic bombs—the second on Nagasaki compared with annual events marking the atomic bombings, the atomic bombing anniversaries ...

Thanks for reminding us over and over that you are the victim

2 ( +15 / -13 )

"In the U.S., meanwhile.. the atomic bombing anniversaries are not officially commemorated."

Not really. The US officially commemorates VJ day. Hiroshima and Nagasaki are seen, correctly, as forcing Japan's surrender and are thus associated with "Victory over Japan."

3 ( +9 / -6 )

Many of these Japanese war veterans saw the futility of the war aggression by Japan.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

Abe would go only if he thought it would boost his popularity.

Of course.

“I know his purpose—

So do we.

I won’t be moved at all,” he said.

Neither will we.

4 ( +10 / -6 )

So we're not going to address the elephant in the room? The emergence of the military complex spawned from the results of pushing a desperate country into a corner. Atrocities aside let's not forget Japan was only following the same colonial script albeit inspired by what belgium did and is still doing to the Congo.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Thanks for reminding us over and over that you are the victim

note: this article was written by the AFP, not the nation of Japan.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

Before Monday’s announcement, Takimoto, who has over the years denounced the war and the leaders who started it, said Abe would go only if he thought it would boost his popularity. “I know his purpose—I won’t be moved at all,” he said.

Veteran can see right through Abe

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Why has he got a pole sticking out of his head? Is it a ghostly image on the photo, like in The Omen?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

People more naturally remember getting a beating rather than meting one out

That explains so much of the weakness of humans and why it seems that everyone in the world is a victim of something or other

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Both Pearl Harbor and Hiroshima have mythic symbolism in their respective countries and are deeply intertwined in historical justifications.

I can see one of those as being justified, but how do people justify the attack on Pearl Harbor? Even the guy they interviewed in the article said the attack was deceptive.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

“It was just a start… and more or less a deceptive attack,” Takimoto said, stressing that given its surprise nature some success was virtually guaranteed.

Japan chose to attack a country that they were not at war with and suffered the consequences. It was a sneak attack with no honor. Japan's plan was to take over the entire Pacific while the rest of the world was focused on WWII in Europe. Now decades on, they want to be remembered as the poor little country that got A-bombed. Honesty is admitting your mistakes and taking responsibility for them. Honor has always been an important thread running through Japan culture and its people, from the Samurai on down........ where was the honor then?...... where is the honor now?

2 ( +8 / -6 )

: ”this article was written by the AFP, not the nation of Japan.”

This article was written by someone whose name is "Shingo Ito."

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Many of these Japanese war veterans saw the futility of the war aggression by Japan.

Sure they did. After they got their _____ kicked.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Without Pearl Harbor there would have been no Hiroshima, goes one argument. Another is that a conventional attack on a military base is not the moral equivalent of targeting civilians with nuclear weapons.

Yep. Hiroshima & Nagasaki may be 'war related' they are essentially an attack on civilians (similar to 9/11 or Srebrenica, in a way). I think healing the wounds of war is more achievable (by both sides) at a battle site like Pearl Harbour than at the location where an army vs civilian population massacre took place.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

" Before Monday’s announcement, Takimoto, who has over the years denounced the war and the leaders who started it, said Abe would go only if he thought it would boost his popularity.

“I know his purpose—I won’t be moved at all,” he said.

As some other posters indicated - a Populist Parade - but it takes the courage of a real war veteran, Takimoto, to publicly acknowledge it.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

AFP: Another is that a conventional attack on a military base is not the moral equivalent of targeting civilians with nuclear weapons.

Really? After Japan's 5-year bombing of the city of Chongqing and their scorched earth policies in China, you want to complain about targeting civilians?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three_Alls_Policy

The Three Alls Policy (Japanese: 三光作戦 Sankō Sakusen) was a Japanese scorched earth policy adopted in China during World War II, the three "alls" being "kill all, burn all, loot all". This policy was designed as retaliation against the Chinese for the Communist-led Hundred Regiments Offensive in December 1940.[2] Contemporary Japanese documents referred to the policy as "The Burn to Ash Strategy" (燼滅作戦). ... In a study published in 1996, historian Mitsuyoshi Himeta claims that the Three Alls Policy, sanctioned by Emperor Hirohito himself, was both directly and indirectly responsible for the deaths of "more than 2.7 million" Chinese civilians. ...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bombing_of_Chongqing

... A total of 268 air raids were conducted against Chongqing, with more than 11,500, mainly incendiary, bombs dropped. The targets were usually residential areas, business areas, schools, hospitals and other non-military targets. ...

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Midway was more important, in a strategic sense post the start of active conflict between two powers. Pearl Harbor brought the USA into the war, which in the end was a good thing but ultimately more important, in terms of an event, than Midway. The Nazi and IJA/N forces day's were numbered after 7 Dec 1941.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I don't see how the lives of the military men who died in Pearl Harbour are worth any less than the lives of those who died in Hiroshima. How does being in the navy make you any less innocent?

4 ( +6 / -2 )

"Among the few instances of remembrance are brief fireworks in Nagaoka, the hometown of Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto, who masterminded the attack but was killed after the U.S. targeted his plane in 1943."

So, they celebrate the guy who masterminded the attacks? Reminds me of when they support people from their hometown even when that person is a convicted criminal, just because it's a big name.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Looks like a man who did his duty.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Was trhe dumbest miltary strike ever. And BROUGHT aMERICA IN TO THE WAR.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

yamamoto isoroku was a character somewhat reminiscent of erwin rommel, the desert fox.

i don't think either of them particularly had any desire to do war with another country, they were simply tasked with the job and completed it as best they could with the limitations they had to work within.

both of them died for being put into that situation. p-38's shot down yamamoto's aircraft in a huge coup of codebreaking and morale boosting, and hitler forced rommel to commit suicide.

rotten leaders force normal people to do rotten things. look at the current leadership situation in japan if you need proof of that. we're back to the 1930's.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Japan..........they always seem to forget about the 20-30 million killed in the Far East & SE Asia when all this talk of WWII happens.......sadly says a lot, still so so SO much to learn, but will never be

1 ( +2 / -1 )

"Takimoto has no plans to personally commemorate Pearl Harbor this year, calling it just one of many momentous episodes in the war."

Except that it's what brought the U.S. into the war, likely months if not years sooner than might otherwise have happened.

Strategically, all Japan did was poke a stick at a slumbering bear. While the Battle of Midway was indeed decisive, it likely never would have happened if Japan had not attacked the U.S. fleet at Pearl Harbor.

While Japan would never have won the war, I can imagine another outcome to it with Japan agreeing in about 1946 to pull back from SE Asia, the Pacific islands and southern China without having to submit to total and unconditional surrender existing as a pariah state not unlike N. Korea, Without the attack, there were few in Congress and fewer yet among the American populous interesting in making war on Japan. Hell, they didn't even want to get involved in Europe and there was at least a cultural commonality there.

Less than 50 years before, the U.S. was a bigger imperialist power in Asia than was Japan. Most Americans understand that Hawaii was itself an American colony at the time of the attack, as were the Philippines, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Singapore and that all these cities, except for Shanghai, returned to their imperialist owners, as did Malaysia and "Indo-China."

The East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere was nonsense, of course, but there was hypocrisy on both sides of the war.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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