Interview: Fight against historical revisionism long, tough but destined to win: Japanese civil group leader

TOKYO, Dec. 14 (Xinhua) — “I believe the fight against historical revisionism is destined to win,” said Takakage Fujita, director general of a civil group dedicated to upholding and developing the well-known Murayama Statement.

Fujita made the remarks in an interview with Xinhua on Wednesday on the occasion of the 80th anniversary of the Nanjing Massacre.

To mark the 50th anniversary of the end of World War II on Aug. 15, 1995, then Japanese Prime Minister Tomiichi Murayama issued a statement apologizing for the tremendous damage and suffering Japan had caused, through its colonial rule and aggression, to the peoples of many countries.

Fujita, who is dedicated to upholding and developing the Murayama Statement, said that Murayama wanted the Japanese government to develop friendly relations with neighbouring countries such as China and South Korea based on that statement.

Japan invaded northeast China in September 1931, and started a full-scale invasion of China on July 7, 1937.

Japanese troops captured Nanjing, then China’s capital, on Dec.13, 1937 and started a 40-odd-day slaughter. About 300,000 civilians and unarmed Chinese soldiers were brutally murdered.

“Some ultra-right-wing forces in Japan have been trying to downplay or even deny the existence of the Nanjing Massacre, but there are also many peace-loving people in Japan who will not sit idly to let them do that,” he said.

“It will be a long and tough battle to combat the historical revisionists, but I believe victory will be on the same side with justice.”

Fujita visited the Memorial Hall for the Victims of the Nanjing Massacre in Nanjing in March 2015. “Upon Seeing evidences about the atrocities committed by Japanese troops during the invasive war, I felt bitter and ashamed,” he said.

“If a person makes a mistake, he or she should admit it and apologize for it. So does a nation. The ultra-right forces that attempt to deny the war crimes were despicable, and people with conscience in Japan will not allow them to do that.”

China’s commemoration of its 300,000 citizens butchered by the invading Japanese forces aims to pass on the lessons to the younger generations is “only right and proper,” he said.

“Japan can only achieve real reconciliation and common development with China by facing its wartime history squarely and handle the historical issues properly,” he said, calling upon Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s administration to reflect upon the history.

Fujita is also concerned that the younger generations in Japan are coming to know less and less about the historical truth about the war as school textbooks seldom touch on Japan’s war crimes nowadays.

Meanwhile, a few peace-loving scholars, lawyers and common citizens have been organizing activities around Japan, urging the Japanese government to learn from the history and tell people the truth about the invasive war, said Fujita.

“I hope more of such activities will be held which is very important to Japan. There is still a long way to go to win the fight against historical revisionism but justice will eventually win,” he added.

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