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Ideally, Germany and Japan would take leading roles in the defense of democracies in Europe and Asia. There are reasons why this may not happen soon. Some Asians might still hesitate to trust the Japanese. Europeans are less wary of a Germany that has publicly atoned for its murderous past.

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Columnist and author Ian Buruma, saying  it is good news that that Germans and Japanese are waking up from their postwar slumber, for it should help to make Europe stronger and Asian democracies feel more secure.

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You cannot compare the level of atonement for WW2 atrocities coming from Germany and Japan. From Germans you have genuine atonement, the result of denazification and education about what happened. In Japan, you have none of this. They don't even learn about the atrocities committed by Japanese troops during the war. Any atonement is fake, and designed purely to get foreign investment coming to Japan. Try speaking to the average Japanese about their country's conduct in the war; it's like banging your head against a brick wall.

-5 ( +21 / -26 )

You should read this:

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

3 ( +15 / -12 )

@Peter Neil - You missed my point in spectacular fashion. How can an apology mean anything when you don't know/believe what you are apologizing for?

-8 ( +15 / -23 )

Hang on a second... why on earth would other Asian nations not trust Japan? It simply cannot be that they haven't atoned, because as Peter Neil points out, and as the government points out before hundreds of them visit Yasukuni in a public display of opposition, they have apologized. They never say they stand behind it, they never affirm it, they often say it is not the stance of the current government, they deny any and all atrocities and blame the victims while claiming Japan is the victim, say things like "Pearl Harbor was self-defense, demand other nations forget the past (often immediately before ceremonies marking the atomic bombings or demanding progress on the abduction issue), send delegates to remove references from international textbooks on Japan's atrocities, claim sex slaves did not exist and delete reference to it in texts, follow statements like, "As the only nation to suffer nuclear attacks we are calling for an end of nuclear weapons... and also we want to host the _____ (fill in blank with international event)" by saying they will not sign a treaty to ban them... So why on earth would no one trust them?

-7 ( +16 / -23 )

Er, it didn't quite work out that well in the 1930s and early 1940's.

The good thing now is that China is no longer a nation of coolies, drugged by the British and their land carved up by several nations. They're slightly stronger now, to put it mildly.

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

Disagreed, they have both still not the slightest chance. Look at the tiniest things and you may understand. If someone visits Yasukuni shrine…a loud outcry from several nations and immediately bringing all history book onto the table. The same for Germany, any little move and they are the new Nazis again. Not even a need to be German, the outcry and war in the Ukraine tells you that opposing only is already sufficient to be called a Nazi. So even already 77 years have gone by, the time hasn’t come yet and maybe won’t come later too. They all don’t want to forget and forgive and the minimum for waiting are 100 years at least. Forget it and forget it quickly. That’s maybe wishful thinking but in reality will turn out suicidal again.

8 ( +13 / -5 )

Remember what lies, lurking, waiting if Japan and Germany don"t step up with their allies and at least attempt to be a force for stability and rule of law in the region. By doing the right thing now, may even be their way of finally atoning, on their terms. China plays the long game why can't Japan? The above comments sure, we get it, but it is also music to the ears for the likes of Putin and the CCP. The past issues are real, but perhaps Japan's cultural factors could be taken into consideration for why past wounds stay so open. We all live here. We all know they don't think nor do things in a straight line, prefer implicit communication over explicit, and as much as we may want to see them finally say exactly what we want to hear in no uncertain manner, it just doesn't happen and we know this! They will do things in their own time and way, have their own dignity to preserve, a patriarchal society that wants to shield its young ones from the horrors of the past. Not excusing it, just trying to understand it. Are they evil for this JT readers? Are your J friends tainted with this curse? Are we to hand over the reins to the new self-appointed kings of the block? Ultimately it'll be up to the countries in the region to decide.

Japan has no revenge lust, nor or a hundred-year chip on their shoulder, nor is their goal to dominate the world through 'might is right' and other sleight of hand coercive tactics where everyone is corrupted and everyone loses. Our grandparents fought that war. Give them some space and see what they can do, hopefully our kids won't have to fight it again.

4 ( +10 / -6 )

Japan simply hasn't moved on. Most of the populace is walking around in some kind of haze of unreality, looking through rose coloured glasses. The official date is still Reiwa, Heisei, Showa, the years after the coronation of the current emperor.

Scratch the surface and the old imperial Japan is still there.

That's why Japan isn't trusted.

-6 ( +10 / -16 )

Ideally, Germany and Japan would take leading roles in the defense of democracies in Europe and Asia.

Japan's a democracy in name only. There are elections but the LDP always wins, the grandchildren of imperialist monsters are in power and the foreign policy is controlled by the US State Department. Look what happened to Ozawa and Hatoyama when they tried a tripartite rapprochement with China and Korea.

-9 ( +9 / -18 )

We need official ranking of international atonements with actual proofs atonements were made to whom for what... for those morons who think world history and atonement history started just from WW2. BS

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Just because it was not called world-wide wars, you cannot excuse for not making any atonements.

List atonements if you can, from Western Powers who kept raping entire Asia for example.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

The good thing now is that China is no longer a nation of coolies, drugged by the British and their land carved up by several nations. They're slightly stronger now, to put it mildly.

And they turn that strength to empire building as Imperial Japan did. I dont see that as being a "good thing now". China has turned itself into the bad boy in the very image of the old Imperial Japan they despise so much.

Japanese down vote negative things about Japan with seemingly no bother as to if the statement/post is factual or not. Actions like that cancel out insincere apologies for past actions.

Perhaps if Japan has laws similar to Germany where by denial of NAZI atrocities can lead to fines and jail time, and actually teach the facts without worrying about feeling shame for what your generation did not do, then Asia may begin to believe you are atoning. Every nation has things in its past that generations later wish had not happened, but learning history is one way to ensure you never repeat errors. That Japan teaches little about it's actions in the 30's and 40's means the people are ignorant of why people see them as they do. This confusion leads to issues today that need not occur.

I like Japan, its rich culture and history, even with what I know and have been taught about its role in WWII. My father could never forgive Japan but the next generation can, and for me, has. But retelling the past to diminish responsibility or to distort the truth that others know well does not stand Japan in good staid. Japan wants respect today and like Germany it is within grasp, if only Japan accepts.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Wow. Still ringing this old bell, huh?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

As usual , anything on JT that touches on Japan,s wrong doing in WW2 and compares it's " atonement &apology " to Germany guarantees that within 30 minutes you get the uyo posters downvoting everyone and the good ole " what about country XYZ ..whataboutism arguments thrown around...." List atonements if you can, from Western Powers who kept raping entire Asia....."

Yawn...

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Ideally, Germany and Japan would take leading roles in the defense of democracies in Europe and Asia. There are reasons why this may not happen soon. Some Asians might still hesitate to trust the Japanese. Europeans are less wary of a Germany that has publicly atoned for its murderous past.

 Ian Buruma. A dutch columnist says... Wonder when and how Dutch apologized and atoned to its former colonies... Last I checked, Dutch even tried to recolonize Indonesia even when that War ended

Japanese down vote negative things about Japan with seemingly no bother as to if the statement/post is factual or not. Actions like that cancel out insincere apologies for past actions.

Perhaps they don't think the statements/posts made here factual, don't ya think?

Perhaps, it is true that Japan lost the war and surrendered, yet did not agree to get stuffed with lies and fake propagandas by which Allies acquit themselves to feel better?

Perhaps if Japan has laws similar to Germany where by denial of NAZI atrocities can lead to fines and jail time, and actually teach the facts without worrying about feeling shame for what your generation did not do, then Asia may begin to believe you are atoning. 

Did Japan ever try to extinct an ethnic group from the surface of the planet? That is what Germany has been atoning for basically.

As usual , anything on JT that touches on Japan,s wrong doing in WW2 and compares it's " atonement &apology " to Germany guarantees that within 30 minutes you get the uyo posters downvoting everyone and the good ole " what about country XYZ ..whataboutism arguments thrown around...." List atonements if you can, from Western Powers who kept raping entire Asia....."

Yawn...

This poster is so typical sweeper of all other evil deeds under the carpet with "that's whataboutism !" cliché , pretending as if Germany and Japan are the only bad ones.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

“The Japanese did nothing to us that they have to apologize for. This is the reason that we do not attend the San Francisco Pease Conference, and refuse to sign on its Peace Treaty.”

Jawaharlal Nehru The first Prime Minister of Independent India

 

“The reason that Indonesia was able to win its independence from Netherland is that the same colored Asian of the Japanese had fought that much and that gave us confidence that we could do the same。”

Prime Minister of Indonesia - Sukarno

0 ( +4 / -4 )

They don't even learn abort the atrocities committed by Japanese troops during the war.

Ignorant foreigners always say that lie to instill anti-Japanese sentiment into others somehow . They just believe what they want to believe without knowing anything about. First, they have never seen nor attended a history class in a school in Japan. How can they know we don't even learn about the atrocities committed by Japanese troops during the war.? They just believe that lie through English media, which always distort facts. They dont know how bias they are because they cannot read Japanese history textbooks. As for me, I've learned what happened during the war a lot and If we want to know more, We could read many books about the history piled on the shelves in a book store. They cannot read and write Japanese, thus they dont know these books at all. Its lamentable too many know-it all foreigners spread fake such stories.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

As usual , anything on JT that touches on Japan,s wrong doing in WW2 and compares it's " atonement &apology " to Germany guarantees that within 30 minutes you get the uyo posters downvoting everyone and the good ole " what about country XYZ ..whataboutism arguments thrown around...." List atonements if you can, from Western Powers who kept raping entire Asia....."

Yawn...

This poster is so typical sweeper of all other evil deeds under the carpet with "that's whataboutism !" cliché , pretending as if Germany and Japan are the only bad ones."

More of the same going off tangent ? Whoever said that J & G were the only ones? But what is the topic again?...Oh yes, Japan and Germany.........Other countries are irrelevant to this article , ie "whataboutism ".

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

As usual , anything on JT that touches on Japan,s wrong doing in WW2 and compares it's " atonement &apology " to Germany guarantees that within 30 minutes you get the uyo posters downvoting everyone 

Perhaps they think those posts deserve downvoting, whatelse?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

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