A Japanese official's recent remarks on those Class-A war
criminals in World War II are being pounded by American scholars
who deplore the rhetoric as "outrageous" and "sad."
In an interview with Xinhua, Doctor Lu Xiaobo, director of the
Weatherhead East Asian Institute, Columbia University, said
"Masahiro Morioka's recent comments reflected an undertone that has
marked the rightward movement among Japanese politicians in recent
Morioka, parliamentary secretary for health, labor and welfare,
told a parliament meeting of Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic
Party (LDP) Thursday that the Class-A war criminals convicted of
crimes against peace and humanity by the International Military
Tribunal for the Far East (IMTFE) after WWII are not criminals
because the tribunal was "one-sided." He also said they are no
longer regarded as criminals in Japan.
"His remarks about the validity of the Tokyo Tribunal is nothing
short of an escalation of the attempts by the Japanese right wing
politicians to revise history, rather than to face history," Lu
"It is outrageous, indeed sad, to see a country with a checkered
past want to become 'normal' by whitewashing its past
transgressions," said the scholar.
"It is outrageous because Japan has not, despite its claims
otherwise, shown it is genuinely remorseful for its wrongdoings in
the eyes of the peoples of the countries it once victimized," Lu
He pointed out that "it is sad that a strong country like Japan
is not able to demonstrate its responsibility and confidence by
rightfully accepting historical facts and interpretations."
"If the military leaders like Hideki Tojo were not war
criminals, there would have been no war criminals," he said, adding
"to embellish these people, dead as they are, is contrary to basic
human dignity and moral judgment."
Chalmers Johnson, president of the Japan Policy Research
Institute in California, said: "I totally disagree with Mr.
"His response is typical of the short-sighted policies being
pursued by the LDP," Johnson commented.
"It is absurd to keep listening to Japan's insults to the rest
of the world," he said.
(Xinhua News Agency June 3, 2005)