Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollectionsJapan

Japanese and War Apology

June 18, 1995

Re "WWII Apology Fails to Find a Voice in Japan," June 10:

It is truly ironic that Japan's leaders still, 50 years after abjectly signing the unconditional surrender on the decks of the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay, are having such difficulty in finding the intestinal fortitude to make a statement along the lines of: "We are deeply sorry and sincerely repent for the agony, pain, misery, suffering, death and destruction caused and wrought by Japan to the many nations and millions of peoples of the Pacific and Asian regions during the years 1937-1945. And we, the people of Japan, sincerely apologize for our horrible misdeeds of that era."

There, that isn't so tough! It would be a lot easier making a meaningful "apology" from the comfortable confines of the Diet than the surrender-signing task that befell Foreign Minister Mamoru Shigemitsu and Gen. Yoshijiro Umezu, on Sept. 2, 1945, from under the shadow of the Mighty Mo's No. 2 16-inch gun turret--and under the steely and unwavering gaze of Gen. Douglas MacArthur and Fleet Adm. Chester Nimitz.

Having served on board the USS Sumner during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Dec. 7, 1941, my interest in this matter is more than merely casual or in the abstract.

BERNARD FRANKEL

Sherman Oaks

*

The Times is hypocritical in suggesting that the Japanese apologize for World War II (editorial, June 6). When the South apologizes to the North for the Civil War, when the French apologize for Napoleon, when the Californians apologize to the Indians for slaughtering them, then perhaps it would be appropriate for the Japanese to apologize and for the Americans to apologize to Vietnam. If the standard is that the loser must apologize, then there are an awful lot of apologies due all around the world.

DON IMBRIALE

San Pedro

*

I agree that the 50th anniversary of the end of World War II is the proper time for Japan to say it is sorry for its aggression and pain which caused suffering to so many. Is this also the time when the United States should apologize for dropping atomic bombs on innocent civilians in Hiroshima and Nagasaki? Let both societies make a clean break with the past and build a more compassionate future.

ROBERT S. VOGEL

Pasadena

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|