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China, Japan spar over Xi's comments on Nanjing Massacre

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Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said on Sunday that Japan did not deny that members of the Japanese military had been involved in killings and lootings in Nanjing but said there were various views about the number of victims.

Too lazy to quote him directly JT? Weak paraphrasing like this is most likely at the root of the continued claims from communist sympathizers and apology deniers, like Hong's claims below.

“Recently, there has been a trend in Japan towards beautifying and denying the history of aggression, which has attracted high concern and caused alarm internationally amongst those who love peace.”

I guess "loving peace" means denying your citizens basic human rights whilst building a massive military and attempting to steal territory from nearly every country in East Asia.

6 ( +17 / -10 )

Regardless of ones' views in the matter, it's not appropriate to air your dirty laundry in the house of any third party.

12 ( +18 / -6 )

Agreed.

There's a time and place for these things, not cheapen past incidents with repeated, petulant remarks on the world stage like spoiled kids.

0 ( +9 / -9 )

No one should behave like a rogue elephant, running far from the herd and wreaking havoc as it chooses.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Yoshihide Suga forgot there is unfinished business between China and Japan on Japanese committed atrocities during war.

-4 ( +7 / -11 )

"Still fresh in our memory" ...He wasn't even born back then probably. Japan should just ignore them and focus on becoming independent instead of wasting time on a hypocrite crappy government's remarks. Japan would be seen as a more mature country if they do so. Only the idiots deny the Nanjing massacre but that was so damn long ago so who gives a damn about it? Oh wait, China does and only because it's a 'useful political tool'. They are never in a place to talk about the 'horrors of the Nanjing massacre' if they screw over their own country's citizens. And if Abe is careful from now on, no-one will listen to China's remarks anymore. (Well assuming he'll be careful which he most likely won't.) War is war. Stuff happens. Plus politics started war so China can really only blame the 'Emperor' and politicians at the time of the war. Zero point blaming it on people now. Sure, argue when they deny it but apart from that China has no right to talk. Compensation? Too bad. Apology? Already done. Move on.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Perhaps China will protest Japan's protest. That would really show them.....

4 ( +6 / -2 )

The Japanese should draw attention to the "historical fact that cannot be denied" of the tens of millions of Chinese killed by mass murderer Mao, a man who still features on Chinese banknotes. It's like Germany having pictures of Hitler on their banknotes. And yet instead of "ensuring that people always remember what happened to ensure such tragedies can be avoided in the future", the Chinese do everything they can to prevent discussion of the shameful antics of mass murderer Mao.

9 ( +12 / -3 )

“Recently, there has been a trend in Japan towards beautifying and denying the history of aggression, which has attracted high concern and caused alarm internationally amongst those who love peace.”>

Honestly, not even sure what they're talking about. The government position has remained consistent since 1994, and nothing came out "beautifying" the war.

Considering Japan has been at peace for around 70 years, and China has waged several wars in that time (present aggression notwithstanding), I think we all know who the peace-loving nation is here.

In any case, there is no justification to use WWII to justify aggression actions in 2014, which was exactly Xi Jinping's motivation.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

Yoshihide Suga forgot there is unfinished business between China and Japan on Japanese committed atrocities during war.

And what? The commies are going to do something about it? That doesn't sound very "peace loving" to me. Maybe you need to consult with the party to get your agenda straight?

0 ( +6 / -6 )

I can`t help but feel that Abe and the LDP have nobody to blame but themselves for this. He and his political appointees waste a ton of time flirting publicly with historical revisionism that seems designed to deliberately antagonize China and Korea, then act all hurt and complain when China takes the bait.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

More political Punch and Judy,

Any wonder young people are totally disengaged from political participation?

Well there's a totally new generation of young political leaders emerging, exploring and perfecting broader political initiatives, preparing for the future, championing personal responsibility, and will reconcile the memory of past atrocities, without the need to demand compensation, retribution and apologises.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

There are no victors in what has become an infantile tit for tat match. To side with either in this argument is to sink to the same level. Nobody's right if everybody's wrong. The Chinese government have their expansionist policies and the legacy of Mao to defend, while the Japanese government all but legally denies the fact that any massacre took place. "It has always been our position that..." and then rewriting the text books and appointing a fascist board of directors to the NHK. How can you argue for either side in this foolish debate? The two ambassadors in London saying "You're Voldemort..." "No, you're Voldemort!" exemplify the endless banality and stupidity of this all. To back either side on this is to join the banality.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

It's kind of interesting since ROC at the time was recieving military training assistance from Nazi Germany and John Rabe was selling military equipment to the ROC government at the time of the incident.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

@Mgigante "The government position has remained consistent since 1994".

The official position maybe yes. But the aggressive actions of the IJA has been denied by three of the mayors of Japanese major cities (Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya) and several members of the LDP including the current Prime Minister, grandson of a member of the wartime cabinet. For example, the LDP's Tomomi Inada is on record as denying Nanjing, and even contributed funds to a film, The Truth about Nanjing, which claims the massacre never happened. Is Inada ostracized by the LDP for her views, which completely contradict the official line? Or was she endorsed, brought into the fold, and made a Minister of State? Maybe you can guess the answer.

Seperately, have you been to the museum at Yasukuni shrine? It's right there in black and white on the explanatory boards, boasting about the construction of the Burma Railroad and how quickly, efficiently and skilfully it was completed with POW labor (with no mention of the appalling abuse and death toll). Sure, the PM does not necessarily approve of every exhibit in the museum, but the rationale and world view of Yasukuni, which he chooses to visit, is quite clear to anyone who looks. The whole place is dedicated to spreading the belief that Japan did not prosecute an aggressive war. If Abe believes his Grandfather and friends were in the wrong (as the official apology implies), why go there?

It makes no sense unless his personal opinion is completely at odds with the apology. His appointment of Inaba to his Cabinet, others who contradict the apology to the board of NHK, and his appointment of revisionists within the ministry of education (which overseas history textbook usage) all support the interpretation that Abe says one thing while believing another. Abe's claim that he visits Yasukuni to "pray for peace" is a best sophistry, at worst deliberate provocation.

Stating "the official position remains consistent" may on the face of it be true, but it simplifies a more complex reality.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

It's the selfless heroism of student Yan Jun that will shape the future. Yan Jun example wins hearts and minds.

Yan Jun is not alone, there are many Chinese students that display the same qualities, studying in London that fully engage on line in the political process unfettered by Chinas political elite. Actions speak louder than words.

Emperor of Japan honors heroic Chinese student who saved boy from drowning.

http://chinas-future.quora.com/Emperor-of-Japan-honors-heroic-Chinese-student-who-saved-boy-from-drowning

1 ( +3 / -2 )

SamuraiBlueAPR. 01, 2014 - 11:47AM JST It's kind of interesting since ROC at the time was recieving military training assistance from Nazi Germany and John Rabe was selling military equipment to the ROC government at the time of the incident.

You make it sound like there was some deep Chinese/German alliance when that is not the case. The ROC was receiving military assistance from France (via Indochina all the way up through the Petain administration) the UK, the Soviet Union and the USA as well (remember the Flying Tigers?)

Lest we forget, there were a lot of imperialists who had their fingers in China's pot and certainly didn't want an Asian upstart imperialist power upsetting the dim-sum cart. Chiang Kai-shek was advised by a German, General von Falkenhausen. General Chang Ching-chong of the Nationalist Army was secretly a Soviet "sleeper" agent. The USSR supplied Chiang with military advisors, fighters, tanks, artillery, machine guns and vehicles.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

So when Japan continues to deny truth, others should not continually speak the truth. When Japan stops denying the truth, then the constant bringing up of truth becomes pointless!

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Unless speaking the truth can get you killed - like in China perhaps?

3 ( +7 / -4 )

The Japanese should draw attention to the "historical fact that cannot be denied" of the tens of millions of Chinese killed by mass murderer Mao

Are you saying it is alright for Japanese to kill millions of Americans because the Americans had killed millions of native Americans?

What has Mao's crimes got to do with China-Japan issues anyway? Don't you know that Mao even thanked Japan for helping him to gain power in China?

Unless speaking the truth can get you killed - like in China perhaps?

I guess you could end up in jail for criticizing the government in China. However in Japan, you could be killed by the fascists (Yasukuni fanatics) or yakuza.

Japan should just ignore them and focus on becoming independent instead of wasting time on a hypocrite crappy government's remarks.

Don't you know that the real reason why Japan ended up as a protectorate of the US is because the Japanese government chose to do exactly what you suggested, that's dodging war responsibilities?

The Japanese government mentioned many times that the 1951 San Francisco Peace Treaty had resolved all issues of its war responsibilities including the paying of war reparation. And since both China and Korea were not invited by the US government to sign the treaty, both were not entitled to receive any reparation from Japan.

In other words, the Japanese government is saying that it was the US government that waived Japan from paying reparation to the biggest victims of its aggression, China and Korea. And in return for the "kindness" of the Americans, the Japanese government decided to sign the "protectorship treaty" with the US exactly on the same day when the San Francisco Peace Treaty was signed. This 1951 "protectorship treaty" not only allowed the the US occupying forces to continue their stay in Japan but also pretty much allowed them to do anything they like within the bases.

As for the issue of Japan's territorial disputes, they have been fully resolved by the various WWII peace treaties/agreements such as the San Francisco Peace Treaty, Potsdam Declaration (terms of surrender for Japan in WWII) and even the 1972 China-Japan peace treaty.

For example, the 1951 San Francisco Peace Treaty did demand that Japan gives up its claim to the Kurile Islands (dispute with Russia) and the Ryukyu Islands (the long island chain between Kyushu and the Diaoyu islands).

And in the Potsdam Declaration (terms of surrender for Japan in WWII) and 1972 China-Japan peace treaty, Japan even agreed not to claim any island that has not been certified to be part of Japan by China and the other 3 members of the Allies.

However, the current position of Japan regarding the territorial disputes is that the San Francisco Peace Treaty, Potsdam Declaration (terms of surrender for Japan in WWII) and 1972 China-Japan peace treaty are all unfair treaties and that they will not comply with these treaties.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

you keep telling yourself that guru. If you are going to be killing off your own people, you should probably have a little restraint when it comes to telling off other nations for doing the same.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

However, the current position of Japan regarding the territorial disputes is that the San Francisco Peace Treaty, Potsdam Declaration (terms of surrender for Japan in WWII) and 1972 China-Japan peace treaty are all unfair treaties and that they will not comply with these treaties.

hummm... I thought it was PRC that said they couldn't accept the San Francisco Peace treaty because they weren't invited to the party. I guess the PRC must have taken back those published statements denouncing the treaty when I wasn't paying attention...

2 ( +3 / -1 )

If you are going to be killing off your own people, you should probably have a little restraint when it comes to telling off other nations for doing the same.

You think it is alright to abuse a child just because he had been abused by his father?

I thought it was PRC that said they couldn't accept the San Francisco Peace treaty because they weren't invited to the party.

You are right that China does not recognize the San Francisco Peace treaty because it was not invited by the US government to sign it.

As such, China only recognizes the Potsdam Declaration (terms of surrender for Japan in WWII) and 1972 China-Japan peace treaty.

Article 8 of the Potsdam Declaration (terms of surrender for Japan) says:

"The terms of the Cairo Declaration shall be carried out and Japanese sovereignty shall be limited to the islands of Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu, Shikoku and such minor islands as we (US, UK, China and Russia) determine."

And the Japanese Instrument of Surrender says:

"We, acting by command of and in behalf of the Emperor of Japan, the Japanese Government and the Japanese imperial General Headquarters, hereby accept the provisions set forth in the declaration issued by the heads of the Governments of the United States, China and Great Britain on 26 July 1945, at Potsdam, and subsequently adhered to by the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, which four powers are hereafter referred to as the Allied Powers.

The 1972 China-Japan treaty says:

"The Government of Japan fully understands and respects this stand of the Government of the People's Republic of China, and it firmly maintains its stand under Article 8 of the Potsdam Proclamation."

As for Japan, it only recognizes the San Francisco Peace treaty for the issues of war reparation but not for its territorial disputes.

The part of the San Francisco Peace Treaty which Japan doesn't recognize include at least the followings:

Article 2 (c)

Japan renounces all right, title and claim to the Kurile Islands...

Article 3

Japan will concur in any proposal of the United States to the United Nations to place under its trusteeship system, with the United States as the sole administering authority, Nansei Shoto south of 29 deg north latitude (i.e. including the Ryukyu Islands but excluding the Diaoyu/Senkaku islands)...

And the origin of Article 3 of the San Francisco Peace Treaty can be traced back to the following agreement made between the US and China during the Cairo Conference:

"During a private dinner with the Chiangs on the evening of November 23, President Roosevelt asked Chiang China's intentions regarding the Ryukyu Islands. According to the memorandum written by the Chinese side (Roosevelt's special assistant Harry Hopkins was present but did not apparently take notes), "The President referred to the question of the Ryukyu Islands and enquired more than once whether China would want the Ryukyus." To this, Chiang reportedly replied that "China would be agreeable to joint occupation of the Ryukyus by China and the United States and, eventually, joint administration by the two countries under the trusteeship of an international organization (UN trusteeship for decolonization of conquered colonies that was established in 1945 and as described in the San Francisco Peace Treaty)""

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

good lord, showing restraint in ones words is somehow likened to child abuse, surely you jest, guru.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

good lord, showing restraint in ones words is somehow likened to child abuse

It is murdering of 20 millions Chinese to be exact. And you expect the Chinese to keep silent about it?

From my research, Nanjing style of massacre wasn't only carried out in Nanjing alone. And not only in the parts of China that Japan invaded but throughout the whole of South-east Asia too albeit in smaller scales. The following is a typical war crime committed by Japan in South-east Asia as described in wikipedia:

"During the Battle of Muar, members of both the Australian 8th Division and the 45th Indian Infantry Brigade were making a fighting withdrawal when they became surrounded near the bridge at Parit Sulong. The Allies fought the larger Japanese forces for two days until they ran low on ammunition and food. Able-bodied soldiers were ordered to disperse into the jungle, the only way they could return to Allied lines. Approximately 150 Australians and Indians were too badly injured to move, and their only option was surrender. Some accounts estimate that as many as 300 Allied troops were taken prisoner at Parit Sulong.

The wounded prisoners of war were kicked and beaten with rifle butts by the Imperial Guards. At least some were tied up with wire in the middle of the road, machine-gunned, had petrol poured over them, were set alight and (in the words of Russell Braddon) were "after their incineration — [were] systematically run over, back and forwards, by Japanese driven trucks." Anecdotal accounts by local people also reported POWs being tied together with wire and forced to stand on a bridge, before a Japanese soldier shot one, causing the rest to fall into the Simpang Kiri river and drown.

Lt Ben Hackney of the Australian 2/19th Battalion feigned death and managed to escape. He crawled through the countryside for six weeks with two broken legs, before he was recaptured. Hackney survived internment in Japanese POW camps, and was part of the labour force on the notorious Burma Railway. He and two other survivors gave evidence regarding the massacre to Allied war crimes investigators."

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

"...but some conservative Japanese politicians and scholars deny a massacre took place."

And hence you have the need for China to tell others, and particularly a nation that has made amends for similar wrong doings, though Germany killed far less than Japan did.

What are Suga and Co. scared of? That they might have to acknowledge the facts? That it's 'regrettable' the white-washing of history here might go unnoticed and the facts come to light?

China is right to be offended by the complaint lodged by Japan, but the ironic part about it is that Suga and the government in doing so have only managed to bring MORE attention to Japan's past atrocities. Well done, Suga!!

1 ( +7 / -6 )

Xi cited historical facts to ensure that people always remember what happened to ensure such tragedies can be avoided in the future,

Xi (leader) and his China are busy creating historical facts themselves. Like claiming all of the East China Sea, creating an air-defense identification zone. The aggression is there, loud and clear, in its actions in territorial violations and its whining about the past and this will continue until the U.S. takes a tougher stand. Ultimately China will have nothing to gain, but its 'leaders' are not concerned about ultimately. Creating a ruckus now serves their purpose for the short term. I wonder what Xi remembers about the Great Leap Forward and whether he thinks the death of millions of Chinese nationals, deaths more than the Germans and more than the Japanese are responsible for, can be avoided in the future. Or does he think Mao-tse-tung is an internal affair no one should interfere with? On the other hand, Japan should come clean about the Nanjing massacre and open all the documents pertaining to it, though most of them probably have been destroyed. Anyway, what Xi did in Germany was very undiplomatic and unprofessional and not something a great leader would do.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

One reason not to commit crimes is not only getting caught at it. Your crimes can be brought up at any moment in any place for the rest of your life and after. Japan should be grateful that China only brought up the Rape of Nanjing. There were numerous other crimes against humanity committed by Japan in China. Unit 731 for example.

Suga thinks he is not a denier by playing the numbers game but he is. He want to somehow diminish the horror of the Rape of Nanjing by trying to reduce the number of victims. Holocaust deniers also play the numbers game.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

It isn't a numbers game, no researcher Japanese, Western came up with a number close to the Chinese claimed one.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Japan should just say, yes you are right and we were wrong, and we will never do it again and case closed.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@yogizuni- you have wisdom in your words. I really don't understand why Japan just can't do that. She can actually stand very tall being the 3rd biggest economy but she chooses to squat so low!

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@Yogizuna @Asian2013

Because it's a face thing, and also the problem is that the conservative politicians will continue having these views, and China will never let them get away even though the majority of Japan may be apologetic.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

China.

yawn

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Well the "face thing" is something that has to go if Japan and the rest of the human race truly want to advance in a positive direction. If someone proves me wrong, I have no problem about "losing face". I understand Japanese culture after following Japan since 1985, but some old ways are better being dropped for good.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

It becomes quite clear that China does not value long term friendship. It has switched or abandoned its friends when it is convenient or useful to do so. If you notice in any Chinese media, when Japan provided the $6 billion in ODA to China in the late 70's to build and moderize their infastructures, only the few communist goverment members knew at the time that Japan contributed greatly to rebuild at the time a primitive China, but these Chinese leaders took the credit. If it's fresh in their memories, Xi never mentioned the help that China received from Japan to moderized their country. In the late 70's to even today, Chinese goverment have censored and never publicly told their citizens that Japan help rebuild their airports, cities and facilities. Only the negative propaganda news of Japan was told to their citizens.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

@Guru29 - I fail to see what recitations of war crimes committed more than 70 years ago accomplishes, other than serve as a useful distraction to crimes committed by the CCP during their time in power (including their questionable territorial claims and self-serving criminality at home in the present). It's pure hypocrisy for the CCP (and its supporters like you) to cry crocodile tears about Japanese brutality 70 years ago and historical distortions/denials, when the CCP has killed 4 times more Chinese than Imperial Japan ever did (so far) and rewrites history in amateurish attempts to conceal the facts from its own people and the world at large - including its debt to Japan which @sfjp330 mentions above.

The CCP claim that 35 million died as a result of the 2nd Sino-Japan War has consistently been debunked as over-inflated. Western historians put the number at around 20 million, while KMT estimates in the post-war period put the figure at around 10 million. It is also wrong to infer that all these people died directly at Japanese hands, as these figures (in all instances) are inflated by including civilians who died due to disease and starvation as a result of the war (and who represent the majority of civilian deaths). The fact is, no accurate records of the numbers of deaths were kept by any of the parties involved at the time, so any figures claimed by the CCP are purely speculative.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

China killed more people, so that makes the Japanese atrocities okay. We haven't heard that one before, nope.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Why does China keep insisting 300,000 being killed? Is there any suppotive evidence of 300,000 bieng killed?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

bamboo pink, here is your answer: “The Chinese figure was confirmed by the International Military Tribunal for the Far East and the Nanjing War Crimes Tribunal. More than 190,000 Chinese soldiers and civilians were captured and shot dead in groups by Japanese soldiers, and another 150,000 people died in random killings and their bodies were collected by charities, the Nanjing War Crimes Tribunal concluded. According to the International Military Tribunal for the Far East, Japanese invaders killed more than 200,000 civilians and soldiers in Nanjing, excluding those whose remains were cremated or dumped in the Yangtze River. A Japanese military officer identified as Ota Hisao confessed that 150,000 bodies were dumped in the Yangtze or cremated.”

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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