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“日裔加拿大人支持南京大屠杀纪念日是加拿大价值观的体现”

来源:贴心姐妹网   更新:2018-07-07 03:15:33   作者:Satoko Oka Norimatsu
“日裔加拿大人支持南京大屠杀纪念日是加拿大价值观的体现”

 

My name is Satoko Oka Norimatsu. Today, I am speaking on behalf of the Japanese Canadians Supporting Nanjing Massacre Commemorative Day. We are a group of Japanese-Canadians from Montreal, Quebec to Victoria, BC who think it is only natural that we recognize the history of the Nanjing Massacre and support its memorialization in Canada. Our group includes Joy Kogawa, author, and Grace Thomson, former President of the National Association of Japanese Canadians, university professors, school teachers, students, doctors, artists, business people, peace activists, organic farmers, and so on. 


Two weeks ago, on June 24, former prime minister of Japan Yasuo Fukuda visited the Nanjing Massacre Memorial Museum, and reportedly said, “Japanese people should come here and learn about the history.” He is the fourth former prime minister to have visited the museum in Nanjing, and his visit was welcomed by China. 


This year is the 40th anniversary of the 1978 Treaty of Peace and Friendship between China and Japan, and we believe Fukuda’s visit to Nanjing reaffirms the principle that reconciliation is only possible with sincere recognition of truths. 


Some people argue that because the Nanjing Massacre happened outside of Canada, it has nothing to do with Canada. We think they are wrong. 


For one, Canada was an active participant in World War II in both the European and Asian theatres, and no one would ever dare to say, for example, that the Japanese military’s abuse of over 1,600 Canadian POWs from the Battle of Hong Kong did not matter because it happened outside of Canada. Everything that happened during WWII matters to all Canadians. 


Secondly, we Canadians do memorialize important historical events that happened outside of Canada. 

 

In 2003, the Canadian Government passed a bill establishing a National Holocaust Memorial Day. Also, every August, citizens of cities across Canada commemorate the atomic-bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The Mayor of the City of Vancouver reads out the Hiroshima Day Proclamation. 


We also believe that people with Japanese ancestry opposing the Nanjing Massacre Commemorative Day is tantamount to German Canadians opposing memorialization of Holocaust victims, or American Canadians opposing monuments and events that commemorate victims of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki atomic-bombings. 


I think it is simply shameful that those associated with victimizer countries aggressively oppose the memorialization of the past wrongs committed by these countries. Such opposition is naturally regarded as nationalistically-motivated history denial. In fact, the opposition group called Japanese Canadian Coalition for Ethnic Unity, refers to the Nanjing Massacre as “something that is supposed to have happened 80 years ago in China.” Their statement, published in a local Japanese language newspaper, even casts doubt over the history itself. 


Our group definitely defies the claim that ALL Japanese-Canadians oppose Nanjing Massacre Commemorative Day. The history of the Nanjing Massacre is officially recognized by the Japanese government, although insufficiently, and we, Japanese Canadians Supporting Nanjing Massacre Commemorative Day, are united in resisting any move within Canada and beyond that would deny the history and oppose its memorialization.


Some people also argue that this is about Japan-bashing or demonizing Japan, and again, this notion is wrong. “The Nanjing Massacre” refers to atrocities committed by the Imperial Japanese Forces. The current nation of Japan and its people clearly broke away with the Empire of Japan and its militaristic, dictatorial, and undemocratic governance when Japan, in 1946, adopted the post-war “Constitution of Japan,” of which the three major principles are war renunciation, people’s sovereignty, and human rights. By talking about the Nanjing Massacre, we are not talking about modern Japan or its people. 


Again, by talking about the Holocaust, we are not demonizing people with German ancestry. By talking about Hiroshima and Nagasaki, we are not bashing people associated with the United States. By talking about the histories such as Indian Residential Schools and the war-time internment of Japanese Canadians, we are neither demonizing Canadians, ourselves, nor our government. These are all universal human rights issues that should be shared and remembered by all. These are all histories that everybody should learn so that they are never repeated. 


We believe, as seen in the example of former Prime Minister Fukuda’s visit to Nanjing, that active memorialization of the Nanjing Massacre by people with Japanese ancestry will only garner respect not only from people with Chinese ancestry, but from people of all other backgrounds. We believe that Japanese Canadians joining hands with other Canadians in support of Nanjing Massacre Commemorative Day will be a true embodiment of our Canadian values, which include respecting diversity and honouring the collective history of all ethnic communities in the country. 

 


Satoko Oka Norimatsu 

 

Japanese Canadians Supporting Nanjing Massacre Commemorative Day

http://nanjingmemory2018.wordpress.com

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