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There’s propaganda to depict Japan in a way that’s far from the truth. There is danger emerging, where such propaganda will have a huge influence on our children’s generation. I would like to think of

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Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, saying Japan has to respond to an international campaign to taint its image by focusing on past militarism rather than decades of peace since World War II. (Bloomberg)

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Perhaps he's confusing propaganda with ...uh... historical actuality.

If he's so worried about propaganda negatively impacting future generations of Japanese perhaps he should stop actively promoting it. The more Japan tries to tweak it's own history, the less credible it looks internationally. "A Japanese study has determined that Japanese history has been falsely portrayed internationally" doesn't really hold up.

Japan is entitled to its own 'special' view of history. However, that doesn't mean the international community is going to buy it, nor does it have an intellectual or moral obligation to.

The primary concern for all parties in East Asia should be the future. The obsession with history on all sides is a tremendous waste of time, money and much needed political capital. History should inform the future, but not command the present.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

Oh, give me a break. I think the Japanese of today are peaceful, and that won't change because I know it is true. But the past isn't going to change either. Stop feeding the propaganda tasty bits on a weekly basis, and actually focus on improving the situation. Playing the victim with statements like this is just feeding the Japanese propaganda machine, further infuriating the neighbors.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Put the focus on the past 60 years of history. Focus on the way Japan rebuilt itself after the war. Focus on the way Japan has been a peaceful nation during that same time. Show how Japan has done a 180 from how it was in the beginning of the 20th century. These are aspects of Japan that others should see.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Nothing wrong with looking forward, as long as philosophy is the reason, based on acknowledgment of past mistakes. But, philosophy's just philosophy. Thoughts in action are the only things that bring results. 'Teach your children well, their fathers' hell...' as the song says.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Imposing or manufacturing a historical perspective that sits comfortably with one's sensibilities is always a mistake. Regardless of whether it is Abe's LDP choosing to foist it onto the Japanese people, or an outraged international community trying to correct those revisions in turn. The point is that the international community has a choice to reject Abe's view of wartime history. And it would seem that by and large it does, and will continue to do so. And the more revisionist mainstream dogma becomes in Japan, the more rejection Japan will face internationally. That is an objective fact that will not change. The tragedy is that Japan will lose a lot of credibility as a serious, mature and rational democracy . The people of Japan should also have the choice to come to their own conclusions without international or Japanese governmental mandates determining their perspectives.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

There’s propaganda to depict Japan in a way that’s far from the truth. There is danger emerging, where such propaganda will have a huge influence on our children’s generation.

l thought this was a quote about the current J Govt position on the affects of Fukushima Nuclear Radiation

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Abe lies. This is no propaganda to distort the truth. Nations victimized by Japan are demanding that Abe and the LDP stop lying about the truth of Japan's war crimes. It is that simple. Abe is shaming Japan. That is the problem.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

"There’s propaganda to depict Japan in a way that’s far from the truth. " This equally well fits much of Abe's rhetoric.

"There is danger emerging, where such propaganda will have a huge influence on our children’s generation." So does this.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Abe does lie, and so does the LDP. But it is not that simple. The undercurrent of nationalism, and by extension historical revisionism, has existed in Japanese mainstream politics for a long time. It is endemic. The DJP had essentially the same views on history but they chose not to make it a part of their agenda. If Abe goes, nationalist revisionism certainly wont go with him. There's always Inaba, Inose, Aso, Suga, Tamogami, Ishihara, Hashimoto, Hyakuta, New Komeito, DJP, Nippon Ishin no Kai, ad infinitum. to the fill the void. Abe is merely a symptom of a much deeper problem. The best that one can hope for realistically after Abe is a government that won't choose to make it such a focal point of their agenda.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

You can call on all parties to just get over it, stop wasting time and energy on rehashing the past and concentrate on the future, but that's essentially saying that a perpetrator of horrendous crimes should be given a pass simply because time has passed, even though the perp has never really owned up to his crimes, ritualistic intonings of "words of regret" notwithstanding.

Japan is the party that's keeping a true reconciliation among the East Asian powers from taking place by its denial, revisionism and refusal to behave in ways that reflect true contrition. Mouthing the words of an apology while your actions indicate you don't really believe in them, not only makes a mockery of the very concept of apologizing, it shows you are still not treating the other party with due respect. It amounts to piling insult upon injury.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Lol, that entire quote just seems really ironic. I think it's very clear who the people responsible are for 'damaging' the next generation.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Yes. It has all the irony of a 'comb over', by drawing attention to an area which might not have been quite as noticeable if it had just been left alone.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

"There’s propaganda to depict Japan in a way that’s far from the truth. There is danger emerging, where such propaganda will have a huge influence on our children’s generation."

Yes agreed, and loads of such propaganda is coming from Abes government. Nobody disputes Japans peaceful development since the end of WW2...by the same token Japan should not dispute the wrongs it did during the war which is what Abe and his buddies are so focused on doing.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Japan doesn`t get to decide when its time to be forgiven its past crimes. It should be able to persuade international opinion given the decades of peace, but not when Abe and crew are busy trying to rewrite history.

That's a lesson Abe and co should try and grasp.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Sometimes i think that it's JAPAN that can't let go of the past.

Through soft provacations and passive- agressive comments by visible public figures, individuals outside of Japan might tend to view these behaviours as blatently contradictory and honestly the "leaders" here may come off as decietful, two-faced and conniving.

It may be a cultural thing in Japan that there is a difference to say something as "an individual" and in "official capacity" but, alot of times that doesn't translate well overseas.

There is no "international campaign" to "taint" Japan's "image" The political and business leaders of this country are doing that juuuuuuuussssst fine without any help from anyone outside Japan.

desolate.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Nothing a few tins of whitewash, obfuscations, control over the national broadcaster and patriotism classes won't cure.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Does the public not understand just how bad this guy is making Japan look worldwide? He's a nutter and needs to be removed from power before he seriously steps in it.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

I think Abe's right... just look at SK and China - they are doing their utmost to paint modern day Japan as a warmonger. Yes, the right wing are doing a good job of fuelling that, but they are small in number and hardly representative of Japan as a whole.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

There’s propaganda to depict Japan in a way that’s far from the truth. There is danger emerging, where such propaganda will have a huge influence on our children’s generation.

Health risk or not? Cesium levels high in hundreds of Fukushima reservoirs

http://ajw.asahi.com/article/behind_news/social_affairs/AJ201402250071

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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