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These young men who died here believed they were defending their family and loved ones. We need to rediscover their sacrifices and learn from them.

27 Comments

University student Atsushi Maeda, 21, who took part in a tour to look for the remains of missing Japanese soldiers at the site of one of World War II’s most ferocious battles at Guadalcanal. As the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II approaches, there has been a surge in interest among young Japanese about the disastrous war that their nation has long tried to forget. (New York Times)

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These young men who died here believed they were defending their family and loved ones. We need to rediscover their sacrifices and learn from them.

Agree 100% with the last part -- " their sacrifices and learn from them".

0 ( +6 / -6 )

When Japan fully acknowledges their WW2 war crimes, updates their textbooks, and stops denying the reality of the situtation, I still wouldnt agree with Maeda. Japanese aggression in WW2 meant that these were the bad guys, especially bad for Japan. Their actions and those of their leaders led to innocent Japanese being killed by allied bombs. These were not innocents. Japan inserted itself into the war on the side of pure evil. Less victim-playing, more regret and heartfelt apologies is the way to go.

-5 ( +11 / -15 )

These were not innocents. Japan inserted itself into the war on the side of pure evil. Less victim-playing, more regret and heartfelt apologies is the way to go.

You're expecting an apology from people WHO HAD nothing with do with the war? This sort of 'apology requesting' sadistic behavior is why many Japanese have began to tune them out.

0 ( +11 / -11 )

Japanese have always tuned out requests for apologies, they have never embraced the shame of their nation, like the Germans did.

-3 ( +11 / -14 )

What you need to learn young man is that they died in vain.

9 ( +12 / -3 )

And don't forget to study the horrific things they did to POWs, to Chinese, and multitude of other people's in Asia. Learn from THAT.

1 ( +10 / -9 )

And don't forget to study the horrific things they did to POWs, to Chinese, and multitude of other people's in Asia. Learn from THAT.

Lots of war crimes and hate to go around. Nobody's hands were clean. War is evil. Learn from THAT.

1 ( +10 / -9 )

pandabelle,

Japan & Germany were as close to EVIL as you can get in modern times, the Germans GOT IT afterwards & have honestly dealt with it, Japan is the complete opposite & this is why Japan has so many issues in the region.

Lets hope Maeda-san & other like him see the BIGGER picture around WWII & not simply focus on tiny aspects while ignoring the context of what was going on.............wishful thinking perhaps!

LaWren enjoy your negs, they are actually positives on this thread!

4 ( +12 / -8 )

@Pandebelle, seems like you don't understand Japanese well. After living here nearly two decades I can confidently say Japanese have an inability to empathize with non-Japanese. That is extremely dangerous and should not be glorified.

And, in addition, my country was pushed into war by the Germans and Japanese, so there is no doubt that their hands are dirtier than others.

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

If they thought that brutal military invasions and occupations of all of their neighbors was "defending their families," then the level of denial or brainwashing beggars the imagination.

They were defending a system that gave no value to individual human life....Only the life of the emperor was worth preserving, according to the ethos.

4 ( +11 / -7 )

To fe fair to the guy, he said only that they "believed" that what they did was justifiable, just as the Nazis believed in Aryan supremacy.

He's not claiming that their belief was correct.

After all, if the government at the time had said " Young men, join the army and maim, kill and rape innocent foreign people, I doubt they'd have generated much enthusiasm....

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Truly Inspiring and poignant for just a minute please try and feel a positive vibe.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

I say let him remember those men and think about what they went through, and do his best to make sure he and his generation don't get their lives lost through the mistakes of the govt.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Reckless

seems like you don't understand Japanese well. After living here nearly two decades I can confidently say Japanese have an inability to empathize with non-Japanese

What a strange comment, and irrelevant to what I said.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

seems like you don't understand Japanese well. After living here nearly two decades I can confidently say Japanese have an inability to empathize with non-Japanese

What a strange comment, and irrelevant to what I said.

And incorrect, to boot.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

After living here nearly two decades I can confidently say Japanese have an inability to empathize with non-Japanese. That is extremely dangerous and should not be glorified.

Do you have an ability to empathize with Japanese?

-8 ( +5 / -13 )

Do you have an ability to empathize with Japanese?

What a strange comment for one who can only emphasize with Japan.

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

When I learned that the 'kamikaze pilots' had their landing gear disabled and just about enough fuel to get to their target, I felt an enormous amount of pity for those young men, a large number of them being teenagers. If I can get this type of information, then I am sure that the young adults of Japan will not seem war in the future....

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I want to believe that within the sentiments of Atsushi Maeda, 21 words the youth of Japan comprehend the utter futility, death and destruction of WW2. The lies and betrayal the Japanese Government of the time meted out on it's soldiers and people to also accept unequivocally and fully acknowledge our soldiers carried out atrocities.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Japan & Germany were as close to EVIL as you can get in modern times, the Germans GOT IT afterwards & have honestly dealt with it.

It took two world wars to bring them to that point. It's one of the greatest tragedies in human history that they didn't get it the first time.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Cheers GW. Sad thing is, I would have agreed with Maeda years ago, or at least been more sympathetic. Its the behavior of the rightwing Japanese which have opened my eyes.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

It’s actually a good sign for young Japanese adults to show keen interest in Japan’s war history which has been systematically and deliberately diluted by Japan for decades. The more they learn about the facts and truth pertianing to the atrocious crimes committed by brainwashed Japanese soldiers from sources beyond Japanese history text books, the better and more clearer pictures they would be able to see.Today internet has made vital info available at clicks away, whitewash don't work well as that 10 years ago.

After being openminded and studying history from different counties’ accounts about WW II , young Japanese would be more likely to see their roles in the lens way different from Uyoku dantai.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

If Japan can remember all of what really happened and not make the same mistake, then these men didn't die in vain.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

@tinawatanabe I agree

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@tinawatanabe, yes I empathize with all and am kind of "mixed",,, Interestingly my children in Abe's glorious school system here already dislike China based on what they are taught.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

yes I empathize with all

Reckless, but your comment suggests you don't empathize with Japanese. You even feel extreme danger from Japanese.

After living here nearly two decades I can confidently say Japanese have an inability to empathize with non-Japanese. That is extremely dangerous and should not be glorified.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Sorry, but he who fails to learn from the past is doomed to repeat it.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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