politics

Japanese welcome Obama's upcoming Hiroshima visit

40 Comments
By MARI YAMAGUCHI and EUGENE HOSHIKO

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40 Comments
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And so do I.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

If mr.obama has visited Havana why not he should visting Hiroshima or Nagasaki ? This man has no concern of true American values at all. I think his next stop is Tehran.

-20 ( +1 / -21 )

I think his next stop is Tehran.

And what if it is?

Why is "Blessed are the Peacemakers" anathema to so many (self-identified) Christians?

8 ( +11 / -3 )

Sneaky Abe is trying to expose America for the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and make Obama look clumsy and guilty.

This is also a clever ploy to say to China and Korea that they should tolerate all the Japanese martyrs in Yasukuni Shrine and not make a fuzz about it.

-11 ( +4 / -15 )

Hiro S NobumasaMAY. 11, 2016 - 04:56PM JST

Sneaky Abe is trying to expose America for the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and make Obama look clumsy and guilty. This is also a clever ploy to say to China and Korea that they should tolerate all the Japanese martyrs in Yasukuni Shrine and not make a fuzz about it.

Or, it's a clever way to say, 'hey, look, if I can face our dark past in the eye, you can too'. He's setting an example Japan can take with it's relationships with Korea and China.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

Uh oh, I'm already seeing various Japanese media outlet labeling this as "Obama coming to Hiroshima to apologize" despite the fact that his intention is far from it.

Oh boy here it goes.

On one end, you have a peaceful visit by an American president to promote the end of nuclear weapon usage which is a good move for everyone. On the other hand, you have Japanese right-wing groups using this visit as an excuse to paint themselves as a big fat "victims" which already fuels their current victimization and denials.

Things will get interesting in the upcoming weeks.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Personally I agree with Obama,s gesture but one can't help but draw parallels and wonder when will a Japanese PM finally make a visit to Naking. Ever?

7 ( +11 / -4 )

“Japan was also trying to develop nuclear weapons,” Takatsugu Sakamoto, 80, said by telephone from Nishinomiya in Osaka prefecture. “Americans were just faster.

Often it is the elderly here - and everywhere - who are the realists, and have the knowledge. Lets hope the likes of Sakamoto-San pass this on.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Whatever. Obama comes and bows at Hiroshima. Goes back and orders more drone strikes on innocent kids.

Peace lover.

Yeah.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

We declared a war against America and lost the war. I don't remember any case in our history a loser in a war asked for an apology from a winner. A war is a war. Anything can happen. Welcome Obama to Hiroshima and never suggest about apology. It is against the samurai spirit.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

@igloobuyer, HERE HERE!!! Lead by example. Obama tried in the U.S., but was blocked at every turn. This will be his only legacy.

@marcelito, HERE HERE!!! Hit the nail on the head.

@gaijinfo, the Russians use their weapons more indiscriminately.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

SchopenhauerMAY. 11, 2016 - 07:01PM JST Welcome Obama to Hiroshima and never suggest about apology.

Which is literally. Exactly. What. Happened.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

“Of course everyone wants to hear an apology. Our families were killed,

That ain't going to happen.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

history is a never ending story that calls out for a rewrite at every turn of the screw. bravo obama visit. bravo japanese welcoming him. this is civilized people.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Ive observed the attitude from many Japanese that if a U.S. person is around, they are very eager to lecture about "no more war", Its like the U.S. needs constant lecturing because of Hiroshima. Ive never heard or seen them take a self introspective look as to why Hiroshima took place to begin with.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@chococya,

Care to provide some links?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Ive observed the attitude from many Japanese that if a U.S. person is around, they are very eager to lecture about "no more war"

They should form an orderly queue, then.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Ive met Japanese who went to the U.S. to preach at universities etc about the horrors of Hiroshima, only to be met with praise and sympathy. They bring the usual one side absolute thinking paradigm that Japanese are well known for, only to be met with the polar opposite critical thinking of the West. I guess they were expecting to scold them U.S. children, but ended up learning from the experience. It seem to leave them rattled, like perhaps there is another view of the world besides their own.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

those interviewed Wednesday said they aren’t seeking an apology.

If it is true that they do not seek apologies, then there position has changed greatly from what it was just a decade ago.

In 2005, Japan's TBS Television aired a documentary roughly translated as "a man who developed and dropped the atomic bomb visits Hiroshima for the first time" (原爆を開発・投下した男初の広島...). The documentary featured Harold Agnew, who flew as a scientific observer on the Hiroshima bombing mission, visiting Hiroshima for the first time. Toward the end of the documentary they had him sit down with two Hiroshima survivors who pressured him for an apology, which he refused to give. It was a tense moment to say the least.

Of course, the documentary played up the Japan as victim agenda, and edited out parts where Agnew spoke of atrocities committed by Japan. The producers of the documentary pretty much ambushed Agnew in trying to extract an apology from him.

Here is the documentary (9' 43", English/Japanese subtitles). The apology part starts from the 6' 45" mark: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iNxQpDcYHKU

0 ( +1 / -1 )

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dM3_s0rKBVc My video on being a human being - I think sometimes we try to make everything political when what we need to do is just acknowledge the humanity of the situations that we find ourselves in.

For 60 years this huge thing has stood between United States and Japan as something never to be spoken of. The time has come for us all to acknowledge and deal with the past.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@sensato,

I saw that documentary also, years ago if its the same one. the Japanese guy looking for an apology kept saying "you say sorry" but they guy replied with he couldnt because so many of his friends died at pearl. I found the Japanese guys behavior to be childish, like why couldnt he ask his own government for an apology?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

“Of course everyone wants to hear an apology. Our families were killed,” said Hiroshi Shimizu, general secretary of the Hiroshima Confederation of A-Bomb Sufferers Organizations."

Everyone would like to hear an acknowledgement that the Japanese Imperial Army's atrocious behavior causing death and misery for millions caused not only the Hiroshima and Nagasaki A-bomb disasters but the even worse firebombings of Tokyo and other cities.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@sensto,

Yes, its the same vid, amazing you found that. I could never forget that japanese guy and his wife,whinning and typical self pity,and dude was strong "Im not going to apologize,he should apologize"

Gotta respect that dude, youd never hear talk like that today

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The Japanese are masters of revisionism and camouflage. When they admit to their barbarism against millions of people and put a sign in front of the memorial that says "We were wrong and this is the consequences of our actions as a nation. May we learn from our past and never harm another people." When that is posted then I will believe they have learned to be true peace lovers.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Yes, I agree, and Sensato demonstrated this in his post.

Of course, the documentary played up the Japan as victim agenda, and edited out parts where Agnew spoke of atrocities committed by Japan. The producers of the documentary pretty much ambushed Agnew in trying to extract an apology from him.

I didnt know they edited that part out, but that makes sense now, Typical Japanese propaganda. You could feel from the vid the American guy was trying to be civil and engaging, but when he got ambushed, it hit those scars and he put that Japanese guy in check. Classic.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

If Obama was president in WW2, he wouldn't have deployed those two bombs. He would've let Stalin grab everything and withdrawal all boots on the ground after the decisive Midway Battle, in which the tide of the pacific war turned in America's favor.

. . . . he's soft. This is why he shouldn't visit Hiroshima. He's probably going to say the US are racist because they didn't nuke (Their fellow White brethren) in Berlin, but made an example of Japan. Or some other drummed-up mumbo jumbo he's notorious for.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Why is Obama setting up all the future Presidents that will follow him? There is no need for American apology for the two atomic bombs dropped on Japan. Japan started that war and we ended it for the World. Just be glad that we did not turn the islands over to the USSR.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Obama shouldn't have to apologize they did bomb us first and we retallieated plus it was so long ago and I'm pretty sure not many people are alive today to apologize for something they were even there for plus Obama probably wasn't even alive so why apologize over something most of us were not even there

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Wc626MAY. 12, 2016 - 12:59AM JST If Obama was president in WW2, he wouldn't have deployed those two bombs.

If your talking about the moral question, what is the difference between conventional bomb and A-bomb that killed thousands of people? They're all the same. Why is Hiroshima and Nagasaki so important? From March 1945, U.S. bombed 68 Japanese cities and killed 300,000 and injured 750,000 people, and left close to 2 million people homeless. Nobody seems to remember these people that didn't die from A-bomb. The conventional bombing killed more people than the combined the A-bomb that was dropped in Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Article states: "a U.S. atomic bomb on Aug. 6, 1945. Some 140,000 people were killed"

Where is the evidence that 140,000 people were killed? The 1946 U.S. had figure of 90,000 dead. Deaths after Dec 1945 evidently were not very numerous. The survey found that approximately 75% had died by Dec. 1945, and that an additional 5-6% had died between then and 1950. Interestingly, the latter death rate is slightly above 1 percent a year, almost exactly the normal mortality rate for the Japanese population. Counting deaths as of the end of 1945 must have captured essentially all of them.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

If your talking about the moral question, what is the difference between conventional bomb and A-bomb that killed thousands of people?

The significance of the Atomic bombs were a foreshadow of the Cold War to follow. It wasn't about conventional warfare anymore, but about "our science" vs "your science."

. . . . that & a lil' bit of muscle flexing by the future Superpowers.

Look. After WW2, Russia, UK, USA, France etc. started recruiting scientist and researching "other" methods of warfare, deception and spying activities.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@Wc626

I agree. The cold war stayed cold because all parties on all sides knew that if a war took place where the nuclear option was executed by both sides, life on earth would come to an end.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I think most Japanese are good with Obama talking about no more nukes in the future, but for those who anticipating an apology, be careful what you wish for. This year marks the 75th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. There will be a big remembrance ceremony in Hawaii on 12/7, and the committee said they are sending invitations to Japanese dignitaries to attend. Mr. Abe, are you up to going to Hawaii?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

From all the presidents why Obama finally visit Hiroshima?As much as there is talk and hope about a nuclear free world that is not happening anytime soon.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Japanese welcoming Obama is like inviting Xi to buy land in Japan. We were at war and that what happened was a result of war there is no need to receive an apology from the US as that is an even greater dishonor to our deceased. Obama should apologize to the American people for being an incompetent leader

0 ( +0 / -0 )

As an American, I support President Obama's decision to visit Hiroshima, but I am also glad that he will not offer an apology.

Despite my belief that the atomic bombings, along with the other indiscriminate bombings of Germany and Japan, were war crimes, they were simply the reality of a war in which none of the players were innocent.

In that vein, I believe very firmly that those realities should be left in the past. Every decision-maker, and almost everyone who carried out those decisions, are dead; nor is it fair to judge every decision of the past under our modern moral philosophy on war.

Instead, let us simply acknowledge the tragedies of the past so that they will never happen again.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Why is Obama setting up all the future Presidents that will follow him? There is no need for American apology for the two atomic bombs dropped on Japan. Japan started that war and we ended it for the World. Just be glad that we did not turn the islands over to the USSR.

There have been US ambassadors visiting the site, crying and bowing and all that. I agree that if Obama was around during that time, he probably would of not shown resolve and buckled to the Japanese at any decisive battle they may have won. There were some in FDRs cabinet who wanted to come to the table with the Japanese at pearl but FDR would not have it. It was firmly about resolve. Many Japanese make excuses why the US dominated, like America is a big country etc, but without resolve, nothing would of materialized. It was the majority of people like this Harold Agnew who found that resolve and took the fight to the enemy. Otherwise the Japanese would of done to you just like they did to everyone else they conquered. Im more of a fan of the resolve; all the other is just a result from that, that we can all enjoy and talk about now.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Uh oh, I'm already seeing various Japanese media outlet labeling this as "Obama coming to Hiroshima to apologize" despite the fact that his intention is far from it.

And here we go. A few supporting links http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2016/05/10/obama-hiroshima-visit-stirs-controversy-us-vets-and-japanese/84182126/ https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/05/10/obamas-trip-to-hiroshima-and-the-looming-apology-tour-narrative/

The latter makes some very good points

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Uh oh, I'm already seeing various Japanese media outlet labeling this as "Obama coming to Hiroshima to apologize" despite the fact that his intention is far from it. And here we go. A few supporting links http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2016/05/10/obama-hiroshima-visit-stirs-controversy-us-vets-and-japanese/84182126/ https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/05/10/obamas-trip-to-hiroshima-and-the-looming-apology-tour-narrative/ The latter makes some very good points

Still looking for those Japanese media outlets that says it. I want to read what they're saying.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

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