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Sino-Japanese Friction

#1
There have been anti-Japanese demonstrations and riots as recently as today in Shanghai, Zhuhai, Dongguan, and other locations.

The Chinese and Japanese foreign ministers met at Beijing.

The Japanese foreign minister solicited an apology for damage to Japanese-owned businesses.

The Chinese foreign minister declared that no apology will be forthcoming.

"China rejects Japan's demand for apology"
http://www.cbc.ca/storyview/MSN/world/national/2005/04/17/china-japan050417.html

Some principal points of contention.

1. The Japanese Ministry of Education has come out with a line of textbooks which, Chinese critics say, short-shrift Japanese atrocities that were an aspect of the Japanese invasion of China.

2. Chinese resent Japan's bid to obtain permanent membership in the U.N. Security Council.

3. China has, in recent years, become a net oil importer. Proponents of the "Peak Oil" hypothesis assert that global oil production has peaked and will decline hereafter. I have read that China views with particular annoyance commencement of offshore geophysical drilling for natural gas by the Japanese in waters as to which China claims priority.

4. I have read expressions of anger by Japanese authorities over the policy of the Chinese central bank of pegging the renminbi to the U.S. dollar. Every time the dollar declines in the foreign exchange market (which has been the trend for about the last three years), Chinese goods become cheaper (in local currency terms) in markets in which Chinese and Japanese sellers compete.

5. Japan may be making its first tentative moves in the direction of rearmament.
 
#3
Govenor of the Chinese central bank has previously gone on record: we aren't going to allow the renminbi to rise against the U.S. dollar.

"Zhou rules out move to revalue renminbi" 29 March 2005
http://news.ft.com/cms/s/f4eeb448-a080-11d9-a3ba-00000e2511c8.html

It's not just the Japanese who are (mostly very quietly) steaming over this. Most of the G7 powers have said the same with growing urgency.

Punitive U.S. tariffs against Chinese goods are likely to pass in Congress if China doesn't allow the renminbi to float.

The renminbi/dollar peg enabled China rapidly to industrialize at the price of accumulating the world's second largest accumulation of U.S. Treasury securities with the attendant risk of getting scalped through dollar devaluations.
 
#4
bit rich of the japos to demand an apology when they refuse to apologise over their treatment of POWS and occupied territories including enforced prositution of korean women. :evil:
 
#5
I'm with the Chinese until the Japs offer an apology for their conduct of the war at least, I'm not so bothered about the war itself - the US did rather push them into it - but the treatment of prisoners (both civilian and military) and conquered peoples was inexcusable.
 
#6
What are the Chinese going to do, crush a few japanese tourists under the tracks of tanks unless they apologise for their human rights record?
 
#8
Bladensburg said:
...I'm not so bothered about the war itself - the US did rather push them into it...
Push? After the Rape of Nanking, it was a no-brainer. Either we took steps to try and contain the "Asian Co-Prosperity Sphere" by blocking their access to oil, or we could have waited until they attempted an invasion of the US mainland itself. Granted it's not YOUR country, it's still a bit bothersome to us here on this side of the pond.

They invade SE Asia;
We threaten embargo and other actions;
They plan, and execute, a brilliant sneak attack to decapitate our sea power;
We return the favor by decapitating the entire country. Took almost four years; but FDR wanted us to help you guys first...
 
#10
I'd like China to start to acknowledge its own crimes against its own people before complaining about the Japs. What Mao and his policies did to the Chinese during the "great leap forward" makes the body-count of the Rape of Nanking look like a section battle drill.
 

Goatman

ADC
Book Reviewer
#11
Tracy-Paul said:
Bladensburg said:
...I'm not so bothered about the war itself - the US did rather push them into it...
Push? After the Rape of Nanking, it was a no-brainer. Either we took steps to try and contain the "Asian Co-Prosperity Sphere" by blocking their access to oil, or we could have waited until they attempted an invasion of the US mainland itself. Granted it's not YOUR country, it's still a bit bothersome to us here on this side of the pond.
Good book on this: << Tokyo Station >> by Martin Cruz -Smith

Excellent background stuff.

incidentally, the stuff about the Rape of Nanking is not exaggerated:
there were two Imperial Army officers who had a bet who could take off a hundred heads with his sword first...the winner took 105, duly reported in the Japan Times with approval.....

Not all Japanese are ignorant and /or self-deluded about why everyone else in East Asia hates and fears them.

I recently came across a website run by some women who were curious why so many Commonwealth servicemen were buried in their local cemetery. They did some research and found most had died in captivity whilst engaged in slave-labour on various projects in the locality.

Site includes names, dates and cause of death of about 1500 Brits.

How FEPOWs can find it in their hearts to forgive is a source of utter amazement to me....

Le Chevre
 
#12
We cant change the past, and all the apologies in the world will not bring one person back to life.

The worrying thing about the current dituation is the fact that China now feels confident enough to push its claims.

The oilfield in question is one of the few unexploited reserves in the area, the other is around the Spratley islands in the South China Sea which China also claims. When taken in conjunction with an agrssive resource aqusition program in Africa, the Chinese seem to be laying claim to there share of the world deminishing resources.

I have a nasty feeling that the Dragon may have woken up. Mind you at least it will make a nice change from the desert. :!:
 

OldSnowy

LE
Moderator
Book Reviewer
#13
I understand that the History Book in question is NOT being used in the vast majority of Japanese schools - and while not exactly a fan of the Japs (My Old Man would turn in his grave if I was :? ) the Chinese are stoking this for political reasons, as mentioned above.

As to Chinese 'realism' in teaching history - they teach that:

- Tibet was never an independent Country, but has always been part of China

- that the Tianamen demonstrations were part of a counter-revolutionary plot to destroy the 'People's Republic', and best of all

- that the USA started the Korean War by invading the North :)

They are trying to stop Japan getting a permanent seat on the UNSC. What they will probably acheive is a militarised, nuclear-capable Japan.... scary, or what?

For more info, check the Web for references to the 'lost' 200kg of Plutonium in Japan a few years ago. THey have one of the most advanced civil nuclear programmes in the world, so it wouldn't take them long to go for it if pushed - say, by N Korea setting one off.
 
#14
The Japanese have been apologising to the Asian countries numerous times. (also pays compensations just like the Germans). The number of formal apologies is counted up to no less than seventeen times to the Chinese.(for Asian countries as a whole, they have made at least 32 appologies). And they still claim that the Japanese have not apologised. It has been seen that some Chinese people have sincerely believe that the Japanese never apologised. (FYI: first apology was dated in 1972. Since then the Japanese consistently giving apologies up until now.)

In Chinese country, the victims of the Nanking is reported to be 300,000 which would have over-crowded Nanking (According to American sources). For your information, the atrocity committed by the Chinese on the Tibetan people has victims of 1,200,000; one in fifth of Tibetan people was the victim. The Chinese have never admitted to the crime nor apologised to the Tibetan people. Scary thing is, the war-crime by the Chinese still continues to the current day.

It is odd for the Chinese to criticise that the Japanese does not teach its history when obviously the Chinese does not teach the correct history of their own to their own people.

It is also unacceptable to even argue that Japanese does not deserve a permanent seat in the UN Security Council when the Chinese deserves the least because of the Tibet atrocity.

However what is really wrong about these Chinese campaigns is that their source of information based upon which they are demonstrating have never been verified. Mostly the information is from the World Wide Web, and the demonstrations have been arranged by the Hate Websites; (whose web names are shameful to mention).

I wonder what the majority of the Chinese; i.e. the ones who are NOT in the anti-Japanese campaign, feel about the recent events. Would they still want to develop a good relationship with the Japanese, just like majority of Japanese would like to.
 
#15
stoatman said:
I'd like China to start to acknowledge its own crimes against its own people before complaining about the Japs. What Mao and his policies did to the Chinese during the "great leap forward" makes the body-count of the Rape of Nanking look like a section battle drill.
If they ever did that, they'd raise a dangerous question of their entitlement to rule China.

Not only does the Chinese government not discuss this topic, I've read that, so far as they are able, they go to a good deal of trouble to make sure that their subjects don't discuss it either.

They have a very well developed system of internet censorship.
 
#17
anotherRuby said:
The Japanese have been apologising to the Asian countries numerous times. (also pays compensations just like the Germans). The number of formal apologies is counted up to no less than seventeen times to the Chinese.(for Asian countries as a whole, they have made at least 32 appologies). And they still claim that the Japanese have not apologised. It has been seen that some Chinese people have sincerely believe that the Japanese never apologised. (FYI: first apology was dated in 1972. Since then the Japanese consistently giving apologies up until now.)
Thanks for your post anotherRuby. I am intrigued by this part of your message because it throws up yet more questions, particularly for the British and the Dutch.

Can you document these apologies? I wouldn't mind betting that their credibility turned upon the language used by the Japanese diplomats.

What the Japanese considered to be a full and frank apology to British PWs consisted of using the word 'regret' in a statement; hardly heart-tugging stuff, I think you'll agree. I shouldn't think that even one ex-PW believed that it passed muster as an apology so it is not such a leap of faith to think that Japanese diplomacy was similarly lukewarm toward those Asian countries.
 
#18
Thank you very much for your feedback.

From your comment, I have understood that you have already known all along about the continuous apologies which has been made by the Japanese. It is a shame that you did not come forward to set a record straight for the sake of both the Chinese and the Japanese.

I have also understood that you know very well by the wording used in the apologies by the Japanese. You should be able to find the apologies towards the British and Dutch in any library near to your place.

Now, as in some languages, written words are different from speech. For example, Tony Blair does not talk to his wife in the same manner as the way he conducts his speech. As far as I saw the speech text, it was a sincere apology in the best possible manner, which I do not believe you believe it is. That is a problem. Japan’s language is Japanese. You know how many Japanese people come to UK to study English. Let me give you an example. This is a true story. The former Japanese prime minister met Bill Clinton. He asked Mr Clinton “who are you?” And Mr Clinton replied “I am Hilary’s husband.” Then he said, “me too”. He wanted to say “how are you?” and expected Mr Clinton to say “fine”. The Japanese are not very good at languages, I have to say.

You do not like the language, English, the Japanese used in their apologies so that you believe they are not apologising. They say, in the similar line in summarise form, they regret the action they took during the war and show the deepest remorse and promised it will never happen again. If this is not an apology enough for you then I suggest you write an acceptable speech with them. Have you tried that? Maybe leaning language might help to find that the same text is translated by different translators will result non identical translated documents. You have only one version of it.

Though, I do feel the victims of war should feel whatever they feel. What they experienced was inhuman and it should not be allowed ever again. The hate for war has to be always there. But personally, I believe, by kicking in the teeth of the person who are apologising is not the way to go. The peace should not be forced to the victims, if the victims cannot forgive the Japanese, that’s life. But it does not mean it should be aggravated.

Additionally, I strongly believe that if you approach any Japanese parliament members and ask for an apology for the war, they will produce English sentence like, “I am sorry…” or “I will give you sincere apology…..” etc. I am surprised to find that people actually prefer these expressions. (To me it is slightly frank and bit disgraceful in a way to direct to the victims of the war.) These English sentences are lot easier to say/compose than formally making a speech.

Lastly, my personal deepest belief is whatever the Jananese do to ease the pain of victims, it is basically impossible task due to the treatment by the Japanese during the war. However the basic reoginition about your agenda is not the japanese not fully appologising. It is a rejection of the Japanese appology. They just cannot accept the apology. In moral point of view everyone understands that they cannot.
 
#19
anotherRuby, you and I agree on one point -- a confrontation between China and Japan is an appalling prospect that must be avoided at all costs.

My previous post does not set out 'my agenda', it was simply a very quick distillation of opinion which has been expressed in this country about the reluctance to do exactly what you describe: apologise using terms which would mean something to those who returned from that war and the relatives of those who did not.

That form of words, and more, have been repeatedly communicated to the Japanese Government and, I am sorry to say, our own by numerous veterans groups with little effect.

To excuse this lack of an adequate response by asserting that Japanese people aren't very good with the English language is a little disappointing. One curious thing about speeches is that they tend to be written down which allows the speaker, with the possible exception of George Dubya Bush, to read at them and thereby make themselves understood.

I'm sure we will discuss this again later.
 

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