Facebook Twitter 新浪微博 google plus Instagram YouTube Wednesday 8 July 2015
English>>Foreign Affairs

Commentary: High time for Abe to abandon historical denialism

(Xinhua)    07:38, July 08, 2015

BEIJING, July 7 -- The anniversary of the July 7 Incident, or the Lugou Bridge Incident, commemorated in China every year, once again brings to mind Japan's cowardly attitude towards history.

July 7, 1937, a day etched in the minds of the Chinese people, marked the beginning of China's eight-year-long War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression.

Seventy-eight years have passed, yet the Chinese people are still feeling the deep pain inflicted not only by Japanese wartime atrocities, but also by the current Japanese government's denial of history.

Since Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe came to power in December 2012, Tokyo's attitude towards wartime history was complete denial, a huge backward step compared with its previous attitude of burying its head in the sand.

Actually, this shift in attitude has hurt Japan more than China.

Japan's attitude has worried the international community and undermined Japan's credibility in the world, as Abe has deviated to an alarming extent from the Murayama Statement.

The 1995 statement delivered by then Prime Minister Tomiichi Murayama offered an apology for the suffering and damage caused by Japan's aggression in Asia and laid the cornerstone for peaceful relations with other countries.

Japan's frosty relations with neighboring countries such as China and South Korea have lasted for a long time, and Abe should bear in mind that any attempt to restore good relations with World War II victim-countries like China and South Korea would be in vain should he persist in denying, distorting or beautifying the history of aggression.

Now the ball is in Japan's court to face up to its wartime history and thaw its icy relations with neighboring countries.

As the world commemorates the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II, it is a good time for Tokyo to stop gilding its own image, and to follow Germany's example of taking responsibility for its role in World War II.

Specifically, it is time for Abe to realize that his government needs to change its attitude towards history by mustering up the courage to look at Japan's militarist past squarely and taking up the obligations of history.

Otherwise, Japan will not be able to enjoy normal relations with other countries around the world, especially with its Asian neighbors. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Editor:Liang Jun,Bianji)

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