Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Ambassador apologizes to U.S. vets taken prisoner in Philippines

In an article found on the "Japan Times Online" yesterday (6-1-09):

"WASHINGTON (Kyodo) Japanese Ambassador to the U.S. Ichiro Fujisaki offered a direct apology Saturday to a group of World War II veterans taken prisoner by the Imperial Japanese Army in the Philippines.

News photo
At ease: World War II veteran Joe Alexander (right), a survivor of the 1942 Bataan Death March, talks with Japanese Ambassador Ichiro Fujisaki in San Antonio, Texas, on Saturday. AP PHOTO

Thousands of them died during the infamous Bataan Death March and later in prisoner of war camps.

"We extend a heartfelt apology for our country having caused tremendous damage and suffering to many people," Fujisaki said in San Antonio, Texas, at a meeting of the American Defenders of Bataan and Corregidor.

A representative of the group, which is made up of U.S. veterans who fought on Corregidor island and the Bataan Peninsula, said he thinks it was "honorable" of the ambassador to attend the assembly and deliver in person an official apology from the Japanese government."

I wonder if Mr. Katsuichi Honda would find a little comfort in this article. It seems the ambassador has publicly acknowledged some of Japan's shortcomings during WWII. It's interesting that this event took place on American soil, considering that 60 years ago America and Japan were hard enemies. Either way, it seems a step forward from the readings.

Posted by: Kloie L

1 comment:

  1. Has anyone here read "Ghost Soldiers"?
    I really doubt an apology is going to make the 9 or so guys that made it back really feel better about the 50,000 or more that didn't.