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A different take on the Tokyo Trials

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Re: A different take on the Tokyo Trials

Postby Hektor6766 » Tue 05.11.2010 8:23 pm

Trouble is, this book doesn't contain the Pal's complete judgment. As for me, a red flag goes up when an author abridges a source to protect me from boredom. He assures the reader there is no need to study the transcripts of the Trials, either; a reading of his own book is sufficiently enlightening.
Putting Pal''s judgment aside (The scope of the Tokyo Trials limit to approximate wartime, the charges of anti-Japanese racism, the reaction against the ABCD encirclement, the actions against orders, internment logistics, etc. all deserve careful consideration) the author seems, besides attributing American treatment of the Japanese defendants to Puritanism and the absence of feudal chivalry, to be using Pal's judgment, and the acceptance of the Tokyo Trials themselves as apologies, despite their disparate approaches, of right-wing totalitarian terror and repression.
He likens the occasional resurfacing of Chinese and Korean grievances, unfounded or otherwise, to a case of syphilis. He attributes the lack of masculine spirit at Japanese universities to the acceptance of the Tokyo Trials' verdict and some sort of leftist decadence that has allowed women to gain power in the campus organizations (the mogas of the early arms production depression recovery might have disagreed with that). He describes the liberal professors (some anti-Marxist) purged from their profession in the repressive pre-war Showa period who later returned to their work as "weeds sprouting after a rain".
At the end of his book, the author recounts an occasion when he was a panelist at an academic conference. At one point he admittedly remarked: "Since we can’t cut their heads off, how about from now on we exclude Marxists from being hired as educators?” Perhaps he was wistful for the good old days. At one time General Tanaka, the Issekikai, Sakurakai and the Ketsumeidan, who had assassinated Prime Minister Inukai and unleashed the full right-wing militarism that if not precipitated certainly ended with WWII, might have approved of this solution. But that's outside of the scope of the Tokyo Trials.
Like Pal, I would not blame the Japanese people either. Such folly can happen anywhere a few loud, intolerant and bellicose ideologues, working off of the decline their narrow ideology has fomented, through symbols, specious rhetoric and suppression of "dangerous thought" instigate and intimidate a frustrated populace in a country that has suffered economic constriction and disparity, become accustomed to perpetual warfare, grown suspicious of culture and intellect, or allowed infringement of civil liberties in the hope of security.
Hektor6766
 
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Re: A different take on the Tokyo Trials

Postby Hektor6766 » Wed 05.12.2010 1:13 pm

Another observation:

The destabilization of Korea, China and Indochina may have made the encroachment of communism a self-fulfilling prophesy.

The translation itself is well done, very readable.
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