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I don’t think Japan made sufficient atonement after the war or was required to make those kinds of reparations ... because the U.S. saw Japan as a bulwark against communism. It might’ve been great for U.S. geopolitics, but it obscured suffering of millions of Koreans and millions of Chinese.

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Timothy Webster, professor of transnational law and director of Asian legal studies at Case Western Reserve University in Ohio. Experts say the U.S. should also be actively involved in coming up with a solution to the impasse over the forced labor cases between South Korea and Japan because of the central role it played in how Japan’s conduct was dealt with after the war’s end.

© Los Angeles Times

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.

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What a load of crap!

'Sufficient atonement'? After the war? Pardon me, but there are other narratives.

'It might’ve been great for U.S. geopolitics, but it obscured suffering of millions of Koreans and millions of Chinese.'

There were two sides to the Cold War.

Leave Japan and the two Koreas to work out their own problem.

In the case of the US, that means arm them both.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

Leave Japan and the two Koreas to work out their own problem.

That's kinda what's happening. The Trump administration prefers to be less engaged in Asia or elsewhere. For Japan and Korea, it's not working out so well, is it.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

What a load of crap!

Read some real history.

Sufficient atonement'? After the war?

Lookup what Germany did and is still doing.

4 ( +10 / -6 )

I don’t think Japan made sufficient atonement after the war or was required to make those kinds of reparations …

Not only is this complete nonsense but maybe our esteemed professor Webster can explain why his US government NEVER attoned for any of its war crimes or carried out appropriate reparations.

the U.S. saw Japan as a bulwark against communism.

I think a better description would be they saw Japan as another one of their foreign military bases needed to police yet another part of the world.

Experts say the U.S. should also be actively involved in coming up with a solution to the impasse over the forced labor cases between South Korea and Japan

No let them work it out between themselves, no need for Uncle Sam to yet again stick his nose were it doesn't belong.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

This is not even voices in Japan

0 ( +5 / -5 )

A side note: Japan never apologized for Pearl Harbor. When Abe was there he gave us his "eternal condolences," which was an insult.

-4 ( +6 / -10 )

A side note : Japan never apologized for Pearl Harbor.

Another side note : The US government never apologized for dropping atomb bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki

2 ( +9 / -7 )

War. Either learn to get over it, or condemn your country to repeat the same mistakes and fall into war again.

The worst wars never end until people get so tired of the violence that they lose their desire for revenge and punishment of their enemies. They just want it to end.

Sadly, a couple generations later, people who never directly experienced any of the war can often be induced to seeking revenge and punishment again for those past crimes. Sometimes leading to war again.

People never learn.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Apparently part of Maureen and Mike Mansfield Foundation "U.S.-Japan Network for the Future", Webster is also involved in the 'Public Intellectuals Program' run by the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations.

https://www.ncuscr.org/program/public-intellectuals-program

(Mike Mansfield was a leading Democrat and Ambassador to Japan).

Given he is such a legal expert, I had no idea the measure of "sufficient atonement" actually had value within transnational law.

He clearly hasn't had enough time to study any historying during all those law courses.

Where the link to the original article?

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Garbage.

Nobody’s suffering has been obscured. The whole planet knows of the horrors of war and the suffering it caused.

Timothy should stick to his own people instead of trying to figure Asia out.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

The US has never atoned for its acts of genocide here.

I admire those who are able to forgive such horrors. Not sure I could.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

He's probably got a book in the works...

1 ( +1 / -0 )

What a load of crap!

Read some real history.

Oh yes, "real" history to learn the "facts".

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Thunderbird2

He's probably got a book in the works...

The real problem is, HE is "in the works" for becoming a high level diplomat or legal expert under the tutelage and sponsorship of these foundations.

He's also a lawyer, he might be looking at specializing in the niche of suing nations, it's a very highly paid legal niche as they know governments have a lot of money to pay costs and can't escape them.

Better he said something like, "I really don't know enough about the issues to comment".

But where is the original full article to put the response in context?

I found this;

https://theconversation.com/recent-attempts-at-reparations-show-that-world-war-ii-is-not-over-114655

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I don't see any major problems with this quote, and I'm glad that somebody out there is getting to the roots of some major disputes in East Asia today. The United States was the driving power behind both the 1951 San Francisco treaty and the 1965 rapprochement between Japan and South Korea. It's clear that American officials during the Cold War had one major priority: Shield Japan as much as possible from onerous reparations payments and lawsuits relating to the mistreatment of mostly ethnic Chinese and Korean forced laborers by Japanese authorities during World War II. But pushing forth the "all claims were settled" line (a key part of both the 1951 and 1965 treaties) was also applied to white Americans who had had the misfortune to be dragooned into forced labor by Japanese occupying authorities in the wartime Philippines. Even they were effectively prevented by U.S. governmental authorities, not Japanese ones, from seeking redress of grievances against the Japanese government and Japanese companies.

And of course, the rationale for Washington's doing all this on Japan's behalf was to help build up the country into an anti-communist bulwark that could discredit the command economy policies of communist China. To that end, U.S. officials were determined to avoid seeing imposed on Japan after 1945 what was imposed on Germany after 1918: Ruinous reparations payments that helped wreck the German economy and contributed to the rise of Nazism in that country.

So the grievances of mostly Chinese and Korean forced laborers during World War II were mostly swept under the rug. I wish that Korean activists would point more towards this (from their view) unhelpful role played by American authorities in trying to suppress South Korean grievances against Japan (rather than simply bashing Japan alone all the time), and I wish that more people sympathetic to Japan would acknowledge the remarkable, extraordinary steps taken by U.S. officials in the 1950s and 1960s to prevent Tokyo and the likes of Mitsubishi & Co. from having to practically bankrupt themselves due to reparations payments a la Weimar Germany in the 1920s.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

When I'm in Japan, I don't expect my friend, who's father was in the Imperial Navy, to apologize to me for my ancestors who fought in the Pacific...

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Appalling and shocking...

Ignorance..

And he called himself Director of Asian Legal Studies??

I bet he doesn't even know about post war2 comfort woman for the US soldiers.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7jlfAqR8uBc&t=81s

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I bet he doesn't even know about post war2 comfort woman for the US soldiers.

Ironically, South Korea did this at least up until the late '90s when I was stationed there last. Prostitution was illegal, but there was a special classification for prostitutes outside US bases, where the SK government recognized them legally as 'Special Entertainment Ladies". I guess it's ok when they do it to themselves...?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@MASSWIPE

I don't see any major problems with this quote, and I'm glad that somebody out there is getting to the roots of some major disputes in East Asia today. The United States was the driving power 

Great.

Now go get them to sue the US instead because its their fault.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I agree with Timothy Webster: Japan has not atoned for WWII, nor has it made full reparations to many of its former victims.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Hold on, usually it's not atoned sincerely enough. Or was that just not apologized. Does Japan have to apologize AND atone on top ... and once it has atoned, then have to go through the annual thing of being accused for not having atoned sincerely enough?

Then once Japan has atoned sincerely enough, will you work out a new verb to use?

Sorry, current generations were even born then. Nothing to do with them, no reason for them to pay anyone anything. Therefore,

Work out the size of the population over the age of 95 (21 or over in 1945).

Cut that down by, say, 60% to exclude the women who were not involved and did not have the vote (therefore no democratic responsibility).

Work out what percentage of them could possibly have any responsibility whatsoever, and then

if chasing great-great-grandparents who have led blameless lives for 74 years on their deathbeds make you feel big ... then go ahead and sue them.

If you are really ambitious, there's about 25,000 men over the age of 100 you could go after. Who knows, may be there's a handful that once wore uniforms? Most, I'd say, were farmers though.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

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