And I did agree with some of the points The Marmot made in this post:
It might sometimes seem that my less-than-outraged attitude toward the way Japan has confronted—or not confronted—its imperial past is driven by some dislike of Korea. Actually, I simply find Korea and China’s criticism of Japan’s past to be historically simplistic, at time politically motivated and almost always diplomatically counterproductive. At the same time, as the victims of Japanese imperialism, I can understand how Koreans and Chinese might be bitter about the whole experience, regardless of how many school, roads or railroads the Japanese may or may not have built in their overseas possessions. In other words, they at least have a right to bitch.I think that paragraph is right on the money, both in terms of why Koreans (and I suppose Chinese) are often so pissed off at some Japanese officials, and how that sentiment can get exacerbated and manipulated as well.
And with this paragraph, too...
What really gets my goat, through, is when I hear Americans and Europeans taking Japan to task for its past. Example A: Rep. Henry Hyde warning Japanese Prime Minister Koizumi Junichiro to stop visits of the Yasukuni Shrine if he’d like to address Congress......I found myself agreeing (and sort of said as much here). But what I take issue with is found in The Marmot's title itself, the problem of calling Japan to account in the first place, particularly for Westerners (such as Hyde).
Whether France, Britain, or even the US have failed to adequately lay out their wrongdoings from the past is indeed problematic, but it hardly does anything to bolster support for engineering collective amnesia in Japan.
Even if just about every other nation were to fall far short of the ideal, the fact remains that Imperial Japan's partner in crime, Germany, has been far, far, far better than Japan at laying out the god-awful truth so that it can be properly analyzed.
Germany, the forerunner in this regard, should be the standard, not our-shit-don't-stink Brits, French, or even Americans and Koreans (and certainly not the Chinese).
If it takes individual Americans to nudge Japan toward the German model, so be it, even if American is less than forthcoming about its skeletons (and is it really? I mean, isn't just about everyone on the right complaining about American becoming too obsessed with what it's done wrong?).
Rather than making an argument for not calling the Japanese to account, The Marmot has, in my humblest of opinions, offered grounds for the Brits, the French, the Americans, the Koreans, the Chinese, etc., to also do some collective soul-searching. Sphere: Related Content