politics

Abe could ease doubts by apologizing over WW2: Fukuda

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By Linda Sieg

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Sensible comments from an older generation politician who knows.

11 ( +16 / -5 )

Mizuame Jan. 22, 2015 - 07:41AM JST

Ironically, a member of the same party as Abe. Unfortunately, the wiser statesmen within Juminto seem reluctant to publicly advise, criticize or challenge those at the helm. To be silent does not excuse them so they too must share in the responsibility.

11 ( +13 / -2 )

I wonder if the day will come when Isis/Alqaeda apologizes for cartoonist killings, kidnappings and decapitations? Live in the real world, today, rather than 60 years ago.

-14 ( +4 / -19 )

Live in the real world, today, rather than 60 years ago.

Jay -- totally agree. But since Abe has said he will make a statement, I think Fukuda's advice is smart.

-8 ( +4 / -11 )

Can't say Abe's words mean much. He'll probably be on his way with friends to go to Yasukuni in grand style either the day of or the day before, making anything else moot

3 ( +7 / -4 )

There is no doubt and the govt is the only to blame for international doubts about Japan’s stance towards its wartime past.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Japan modernized based on England (who lead a 200 year rampage over the world: "the sun never sets on the british empire"), so David Cameron and Abe can stand hand in hand and apologize together to the world.

-8 ( +2 / -10 )

gokai_wo_maneku: Japan modernized based on England ...

That's right! Fair is fair!

Abe to Cameron: "You first."

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

Live in the real world, today, rather than 60 years ago.

70

Japan modernized based on England (who lead a 200 year rampage over the world: "the sun never sets on the british empire"), so David Cameron and Abe can stand hand in hand and apologize together to the world.

Unfortunately England was not alone. But the amazing thing is that Western powers still committ(ed) atrocities after WW2 and little was (is) said or done. A terrible way to happen, but one silver lining from that WW2 is the European's influence in Asia and Africa was weakened, and they were driven out after much kicking and screaming on their part. Some IJA soldiers remained behind and helped independence movements in Indonesia (and elsewhere?), something that should be forgotten for sake of accurate history.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Ridiculous, Japan and former PMs have apologised previously, perhaps china and korea would be happy if every Japanese person woke every day saying "good morning sorry about the war", then they may be placated.

There have been many apologies, was abe responsible for the war NO why does he need to apologise for something he didn't do nor was responsible for and something that has previously been apologised for ?

A different generation at a different time under different circumstances, but the people of today bear the burden and must take the berating ?

-17 ( +5 / -21 )

StormR said: "A different generation at a different time under different circumstances, but the people of today bear the burden and must take the berating ?"

If they have tried to deny, excuse or whitewash the past generation's evil deeds -- yes, they certainly should expect to be berated.

14 ( +19 / -6 )

Like I have been saying, 2015, is going to be a tough one for Japan especially with abe "leading" ......

The whole world KNOWS that abe & friends believe that the only Japan did wrong was lose WWII.......... so abe is possibly the worst person to be PM in the year of the 70th anniversary of WWII, to say the least its going to be hard for Japan to look good & even harder to believe whats said! And there is also the possibility of a severely embarrassing meltdown by the govt

A different generation at a different time under different circumstances, but the people of today bear the burden and must take the berating ?

Well that's what 70years of NOT dealing with ones nasty history will do for you! While obviously Japanese today weren't there, its also obvious they should learn from what did happen, but unfortunately Japan cant even agree on what happened from say the 1930's to 1945 let alone atone for it. Japan hoped staying largely silent & paying some blood money would do the trick, Japan is finding out the hard way that its failed miserably.

At the least 2015 will be interesting, just not likely in a good way, would LOVE to proven massively wrong but I doubt it!

4 ( +9 / -5 )

The only reasonable Japanese PM in quite some time-who threw his hands up in exasperation and resigned due to the futility, cronyism and infantilism of Japanese politics.

10 ( +13 / -3 )

Abe could ease doubts by apologizing over WW2: Fukuda

What a great idea. He could create laws against denying WW2 apologies and atrocities at the same time

-7 ( +3 / -10 )

There must be a commitment from both sides. Abe should offer to make an apology on the condition that Seoul and Beijing will not ask for a further one. Otherwise we will get to the ridiculous inevitability of Korean/Chinese leaders who are not yet born demanding apologies from Japanese who are not yet born, if one further apology can prevent this Abe should bite the bullet.

Abbot hasnt apologised for the stolen generation, Cameron hasnt apologised for the potato famine, Merkel hasnt apologised for the holocaust and Obama hasnt apologised for slavery. They dont have to because their predecessors have already done so. I really fail to see why Japan is the exception.

I also dont get why people get so obsessive about Japans record when there are far worse offenders, Turkeys refusal to acknowledge their genocide is the biggest example but theres lots of little ones out there. The JT posters who get oturaged on behalf of other people should try reading a Frence history text one day, they will have kittens! Theres a highway in America named after the leader of the pro slavery CSA, statues in London of bomber Harris who purposly murdered civilians in Dresden and the greatest mass murderer of the 20th century proudly sits on the banknotes of the worlds 2nd largest economy.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

Whatever Mr.Fukuda says, Abe isn't likely to change his views on Japan's part in the war. And judging from what he has been saying, I have little confidence in Abe making a sincere apology to our neighbours as part of his statement on the 70th anniversary. I'll bet Emperor's statement on the same anniversary, if he does make one, will be a much, much more sincere and heartfelt one.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

I totally disagree. It has been said over and over again by every PM and sometimes more than once by the same PM.

It is 2015 is it not? How much more should this generation pay for the stupidity of their great, great grandparents bushido life style?

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Abe should offer to make an apology on the condition that Seoul and Beijing will not ask for a further one.

Well sure. If law were put in place denying war crimes etc then such a condition wouldn't be necessary. The whole reason why China and South Korea keep getting upset is because of Hashimoto, Abe, and Ishihara shooting their mouths off, denying everything all time. That and visits to Yasukuni by politicians (where war criminals are enshrined) The 70th anniversary of the end of WW2 (VE and VJ days) is approaching. Japan - and Abe - has a chance to wipe the slate clean once and for all

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Hashimoto apologized for his remarks, Ishihara is retired from public life so no longer represents the government and Abe's denials exist only in your head.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

I have little confidence in Abe making a sincere apology to our neighbours as part of his statement on the 70th anniversary.

Of course not, he's too dependent on votes and funds from WW2 veterans and their relatives, and right-wing nationalists who would prefer to believe there weren't any war crimes at all.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

Innit is correct and

Christopher Glen

The whole reason why China and South Korea keep getting upset is because of Hashimoto, Abe, and Ishihara shooting their mouths off, denying everything all time.

These two countries have been banging on long before abe, ishihara and hashimoto came on the scene and will continue to bang on long after they have gone,

Apologies have been repeated over and over but the deaf ears of these people who do not think it was good enough keep hearing nothing.

If I bumped you in the street and said excuse me sorry, but you demanded another apology and continued wanting apologies everytime we saw each other pretty soon you would get an arrogant response, you cant keep on demanding apologies never endingly.

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

No matter how many apologies you add up to the already existing heap of WWII apologies, it will never be enough for China and SK. This is because the victim card has become a convenient commodity for those two countries.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

If I bumped you in the street and said excuse me sorry, but you demanded another apology and continued wanting apologies everytime we saw each other pretty soon you would get an arrogant response,

If you bumped into someone in the street and said sorry, and then said they'd just imagined it the next time you saw them, it would be a bit closer to the Japanese situation.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

@Simon

If I bumped you in the street and said excuse me sorry, but you demanded another apology and continued wanting apologies everytime we saw each other pretty soon you would get an arrogant response,

But "you" haven't said sorry yet.

Until the Diet votes, unanimously, for a bill apologising unreservedly for what Japan did in Asia then any talk of reconciliation is pretty much pointless.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

lucubrasi they have many times. Your lop sided argument is deluded

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

These two countries have been banging on long before abe, ishihara and hashimoto came on the scene and will continue to bang on long after they have gone,

Nope, they have been banging on because of my previously stated reasons - Japan's perceived lack of contrition for WW2 and continued territorial demands, ie Dokdo.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Abe should offer to make an apology on the condition that Seoul and Beijing will not ask for a further one. Otherwise we will get to the ridiculous inevitability of Korean/Chinese leaders who are not yet born demanding apologies from Japanese who are not yet born, if one further apology can prevent this Abe should bite the bullet.

Your joking right! In case you hadn't noticed Japan has uttered many UN-Official "apologies" yes, but most are so vague no one can tell what they mean, does Japan regret brutalizing the far east, SE Asia, South Pacific, or does it simply regret losing WWII................certainly next to nothing in regards to sincerity, & its gone on fro decades like this!

And then we the hordes of public figures over decades who constantly deny Japan did much if any wrong or almost never get called on it!!

So while I am hardly a fan of China & Korea wrt to all this I can understand why they continue to have problems with Japans utter lack of sincerity with regards to WWII etc!

I have posted many time that Japan SHOULD have taken the high road decades ago, admitted it did wrong, killed many millions, forced women to be sex slaves etc etc.

Japan could also point out they have behaved VERY well since 1945, so if China or Korea was stupid enough to bring up WWII Japan could simply say YES we did that, Yes we regret what we did, Japan is no longer THAT kind of country, NOW would Chine/Korea please SHUT THE HELL UP & BUGGER OFF!!!!

But alas Japan CANT say the above because well.......................70yrs and counting & Japan still cant even admit what it did SO it cant tell China/Korea to SHUT UP(even though both China/Korea often act stupid!).

And here we are 2015 & Japan is in a tight spot entirely of its own making!

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Japan could also point out they have behaved VERY well since 1945, so if China or Korea was stupid enough to bring up WWII Japan could simply say YES we did that, Yes we regret what we did, Japan is no longer THAT kind of country, NOW would Chine/Korea please SHUT THE HELL UP & BUGGER OFF!!!!

Exactly. That sounds like too much common sense for the Japanese government - a department in which they singularly lack

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

The 400 year rampage of Europe over the world has been written out of White History. Now they say that Europeans were so kind to bring civilization to countries that didn't have any, like China and India. Only Japan's little forray into British style Imperialism remains on the permanent historical record.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Not now. Suggest later after fate of two Japanese that may be beheaded Abe is concentrating on rescueing will be known, . Don't talk like he is representative of other countries. Right now, otjer countries are more interested in how Japan can rescue these two people in far away desert than digging old wound . Let Abe concentrate on what he is doing. Fukuda, don;t be heartless pretending you are asked by WW II victim countries. Or are you???

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The 400 year rampage of Europe over the world has been written out of White History. Now they say that Europeans were so kind to bring civilization to countries that didn't have any, like China and India. Only Japan's little forray into British style Imperialism remains on the permanent historical record.

Yes, because guess what? Kids at schools in western countries actually learn about their past - both good and bad. Japan's still remains on the historical record because for one thing they haven't properly acknowledged it. ie Giving muddled apologies and whitewashing the history books.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Demands for attrition through atonement is not going to recompense the past. This government in fact any government is elected with a mandate for a limited period of time. Only prolonged diplomatic engagement to determine an agenda for future generations to benifit and learn from historical past atrocities can recompense the past. Barking at the LDP or Abe is a hiding to nothing.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Only prolonged diplomatic engagement to determine an agenda for future generations to benifit

Germany didn't have to resort to diplomatic engagement - because their sincerity and remorse for WW2 was shown through its actions. Compensation for all Holocaust victims, education on the subject in schools etc. Only by showing true repentance can future generations of Japanese benefit

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Japan has already apologized. The other gentlemen who apologized did so for all of Japan. Apologies are a dead issue.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Japan has already apologized

Yes they have. Many times. But what is an apology if the next day some politician of note like Hashimoto or Ishihara turns around and denies what was apologised for? Then people start to doubt your sincerity

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Ridiculous, Japan and former PMs have apologised previously, perhaps china and korea would be happy if every Japanese person woke every day saying "good morning sorry about the war", then they may be placated.

@StormR - never mind Japanese people starting their day with an apology. How about NOT doing stuff like this?

http://www.japantoday.com/category/politics/view/japan-asks-u-s-publisher-to-change-sex-slave-reference-in-textbook

1 ( +8 / -7 )

Mr. Abe should not apologize. The apology should come from the Emperor directly and not the Prime Minister to settle the issue of a formal apology and instead a representative of the Emperor was sent to sign the surrender and apologize. True the Emperor did apologize later but not publicly and openly to the world. A formal world public apology that never occurred by the Emperor of Japan then or now is what the world has been waiting for and Asian neighbors should get, not any other representative. This would solve a huge issue and help the easing of relations in Asia. Remember Japan started war by a surprise attack and the invasion and occupation of Korea, China and other of its neighbors. The Facts:

The United States was particularly unhappy with Japan’s increasingly belligerent attitude toward China. The Japanese government believed that the only way to solve its economic and demographic problems was to expand into its neighbor’s territory and take over its import market; to this end, Japan had declared war on China in 1937. American officials responded to this aggression with a battery of economic sanctions and trade embargoes. They reasoned that without access to money and goods, and especially essential supplies like oil, Japan would have to rein in its expansionism. Instead, the sanctions made the Japanese more determined to stand their ground. During months of negotiations between Tokyo Washington D.C., neither side would budge. It seemed that war was inevitable. A date which Will Live in Infamy, December 7, 1941, after months of planning and practice at Misawa Airfield, the Japanese launched their attack. The declaration of war by the Empire of Japan on the United States and the British Empire was published on December 8, 1941 (Japan time; December 7 in the United States) after Japanese forces had executed an attack on the United States at Pearl Harbor and attacks on British forces in Malaya, Singapore, and Hong Kong. The declaration of war was printed on the front page of all Japanese newspapers' evening editions on December 8.
1 ( +4 / -3 )

Any public mea culpa has to date not remotely been acceptable to either Korea or the Government of China.

The Government of China has continued to slaughter and massacre it's own students and people, while at the same time refusing to adopt even the basic principles of international law. It is truly remarkable that successive US governments can except Japan back into the international community but the Government of China who shows utter contempt for basic human rights or any form of democracy can lecture the people of Japan.

I for one will never flinch from the atrocities committed by the Imperial Japanese Army during WW2, neither will deny that women were forced into sex slavery.

Will Abe San on bended knee earnestly rectify the worst atrocities committed during the WW2?

Only a independent diplomatic commission focusing on education and remembrance can establish a process of atonement, followed by genuine forgiveness so future generations can move on.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@Simon

If I bumped you in the street and said excuse me sorry, but you demanded another apology and continued wanting apologies everytime we saw each other pretty soon you would get an arrogant response,

But "you" haven't said sorry yet.

Yes, that bit really should have been in a quote, it was StormR's analogy, not mine.

Until the Diet votes, unanimously, for a bill apologising unreservedly for what Japan did in Asia then any talk of reconciliation is pretty much pointless.

Never going to happen, unfortunately. Any politician brave enough to suggest it would soon find themselves subject to a barrage of death threats, severed fingers or bullets in the mail, not to mention uyoku trucks driving around their office 27/7 blaring out sexual insults about their daughters or calling for them to be slaughtered like cockroaches.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

@innit

There must be a commitment from both sides. Abe should offer to make an apology on the condition that Seoul and Beijing will not ask for a further

I see your point but they probably say it's not sincere and genuine apology. And it probably isn't. Abe and majority of Japanese weren't even there.

@Chop Chop

Fukuda-chan is a big time China school. He won't miss this 70th anniversary.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

I will always consider as "insincere" an apology given by someone who wasn't even born until 10 years after what he's apologizing for ended. If I remember correctly, the Emperor apologized for the war back in the late 40's. Is the new rule that every new elected leader of the country must apologize again? I'm not seeing this requirement of the current German Chancellor and Germany is the country that ACTUALLY started the war that people want Japan to apologize (again and again) for.

Enough!

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

The usual apologists continue with the "but but but Japan has apologised enough times" line, completely ignoring dozens of attempts by senior government officials to deny past wrongs..

1 ( +4 / -3 )

If I remember correctly, the Emperor apologized for the war back in the late 40's. Is the new rule that every new elected leader of the country must apologize again? I'm not seeing this requirement of the current German Chancellor and Germany is the country that ACTUALLY started the war that people want Japan to apologize (again and again) for.

I agree. Another apology serves no purpose whatsoever except to give China and Korea excuses for their more recent aggressions against Japan's territorial sovereignty. Japan has put paid many times over for its past conduct and this idea that Japan must keep kowtowing to China until China decides to "accept" Japan's previously offered apologies is futile. China likes to keep stirring the pot and will never accept Japan's apologies. It's time to let China know that it doesn't get to decide Japan's sincerity or lack thereof anymore.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

It is not reported much in the English press I guess, but anyone who reads Japanese can find that the Emperor has apologized many times what the Japanese did during the war during his trips abroad, especially to SE asia. Google 天皇陛下 謝罪. Or look on Utube videos. Pay no attention to stupid Japanese politicians. The war was fought "in the Emperor's name", so his apologies are the ones that count.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Another apology serves no purpose whatsoever except to give China and Korea excuses for their more recent aggressions against Japan's territorial sovereignty. Japan has put paid many times over for its past conduct and this idea that Japan must keep kowtowing to China until China decides to "accept" Japan's previously offered apologies is futile. China likes to keep stirring the pot and will never accept Japan's apologies. It's time to let China know that it doesn't get to decide Japan's sincerity or lack thereof anymore.

That's missing the point completely. Another apology serves no purpose whatsoever while Japanese right-wingers, nationalists and reactionaries in positions of power continue to excuse or glorify Japan's wartime conduct. It's been said over and over again, is it really such a hard concept to grasp, or do some people just hate the CCP so much that they see anyone who annoys them as saints by comparison?

1 ( +4 / -3 )

TS: That's right! Fair is fair! Abe to Cameron: "You first."

http://worldobserveronline.com/2012/11/09/british-invaded-nine-ten-countries-look-luxembourg

... Britain has invaded all but 22 countries in the world in its long and colourful history, new research has found. - November 9, 2012

The analysis of the histories of the almost 200 countries in the world found only 22 which have never experienced an invasion by the British.

Only a comparatively small proportion of the total in Mr Laycock’s list of invaded states actually formed an official part of the empire.

The remainder have been included because the British were found to have achieved some sort of military presence in the territory – however transitory – either through force, the threat of force, negotiation or payment.

Incursions by British pirates, privateers or armed explorers have also been included, provided they were operating with the approval of their government.

So, many countries which once formed part of the Spanish empire and seem to have little historical connection with the UK, such as Costa Rica, Ecuador and El Salvador, make the list because of the repeated raids they suffered from state-sanctioned British sailors. ...

The countries never invaded by the British: (list of 22)

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

but anyone who reads Japanese can find that the Emperor has apologized many times what the Japanese did during the war during his trips abroad, especially to SE asia.

The emperor was indeed fortunate he wasn't tried (and executed) as a war criminal. Many of Japan's war time atrocities were authorised in his name. However MacArthur decided he was useful........and the rest is history. To its credit though, the imperial family has stayed away from Yasukuni shrine since they enshrined the war criminals there in 1978

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Also, remember that the Emperor's new year message was very anti-Abe.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Really? I'd be interested to find a link to that, if you have one. What the emperor could do, if Abe will not, is make a WW2 apology on August 15th. He's the one person the uyoku would never dare protest against

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Abe was not alive during WW II. After WW II, Many Japanese officials were arrested and PM Konoe took responsibility and killed himself. /as for Gen Tojo, first he was telling Emperor was together with all of them. Even other people were telling same way Tojo said, next day, MacArther's instruction, Tojo took full responsibitity avoiding to tell truth about Emperor's role. He tried suicde but he was rescued by a few GHQ officers but with pain, Tojo did not tell truth about Emperor. Abe was not born yet/ In next year spring, Japanese learned execution and that ended fiasco in Japan and Abe was not born yet. This /Emperor was born in 1933 and what he peach peace is his opibion. If he did polucal influende, he would be dethroned by now.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Another apology serves no purpose whatsoever except to give China and Korea excuses for their more recent aggressions against Japan's territorial sovereignty

No, it wouldn't. The moral advantage they currently have would be removed, (as long as a law against revisionism was then enacted) and Japan could then focus on the area where they do have an advantage: their peaceful record since 1945

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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