Plunge Pontificates

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Thursday, May 11, 2006

Japanese Ignorant of Their Sordid Past

Despite how often we are told that Japanese are very knowledgeable of their past and the crimes that were committed, it makes you wonder how true it is when so many are completely ignorant of the Tokyo War Crimes Tribunal.

Fifty-three percent of the respondents were aware the International Military Tribunal for the Far East took place after World War II, but they did not know any further details. And 17 percent said they didn't even know the Tokyo tribunal was held. Ignorance of the trial was greater among younger respondents.

Among those in their 20s, 90 percent have little or no knowledge of the Tokyo tribunal, which started 60 years ago to punish Class-A war criminals for their roles in the war. Of them, 37 percent did not know the tribunal was held. The rate of total ignorance concerning the trial was 20 percent among respondents in their 30s and 40s. Respondents with scant or no knowledge about the tribunal were more inclined to accept the fact that Yasukuni Shrine honors Class-A war criminals along with the nation's war dead. They also expressed less opposition to visits to Yasukuni Shrine by Japanese prime ministers.
This is extremely disturbing. How can something so important in their past be so looked over? The final sentence is telling as well. Those that are ignorant of the tribunals have little problem with Yasukuni. How nice, a direct correlation of ignorance of the past leads to asinine opinions in the future. Another disturbing factor is the correlation between age and ignorance. The younger generations know less and less of their history. With this, we are seeing a rise in nationalism, a disturbing trend.

Please take the time to read the rest of this disturbing article on your own.