Sunday, January 4, 2015
On January 1, 2015, the Japanese Emperor issued his New Year statement to the Japanese people addressing WWII as follows:
This year marks the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II, which cost many people their lives. Those who died on the battlefields, those who died in the atomic bombings in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, those who died in the air raids on Tokyo and other cities-so many people lost their lives in this war. I think it is most importance for us to take this opportunity to study and learn from the history of this war, starting with Manchurian Incident of 1931, as we consider the future direction of our country (emphasis added) (Imperial House Agency, Imperial House Agency Website, January 1, 2015, http://www.kunaicho.go.jp/e-okotoba/01/gokanso/shinnen-h27.html (accessed on January 2, 2015).
Source: Imperial House Agency (accessed on January 2, 2015)
Unfortunately, for unknown reasons this important message has been ignored by the majority of Japanese and Western media. The phrase, “I think it is most importance for us to take this opportunity to study and learn from the history of this war (i.e., WWII), starting with Manchurian Incident of 1931, as we consider the future direction of our country,” indicated concern for the future of Japan’s current direction by the Japanese emperor. This might be one of strongest messages regarding the war in recent history from His Majesty to the Japanese people including the prime minister and right-wing conservative politicians. To learn history “starting with the Manchurian Incident in 1931” in WWII to direct Japan’s future is a key lesson for Japan’s future road as explained by His Majesty.