Cover image for Japanese war crimes : the search for justice
Japanese war crimes : the search for justice
Li, Peter, 1935-
Publication Information:
New Brunswick, U.S.A. : Transaction Publishers, [2003]

Physical Description:
xii, 339 pages ; 23 cm
General Note:
Portions of book originally published in East Asia: An International Quarterly, fall 200, vol. 18, no. 3; and includes sample of presentations at International Citizens' Forum on War Crimes and Redress, held December 10-12, 1999, in Tokyo.
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
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D804.J3 J37 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

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The question of national responsibility for crimes against humanity became an urgent topic due to the charge of ethnic cleansing against the previous Yugoslav government. But that was not the first such urging of legal and moral responsibility for war crimes. While the Nazi German regime has been prototypical, the actions of the Japanese military regime have been receiving increasing prominence and attention. Indeed, Peter Li's volume examines the phenomenon of denial as well as the deeds of destruction.

Certainly one of the most troublesome unresolved problems facing many Asian and Western countries after the Asia Pacific war (1931u1945) is the question of the atrocities committed by the Japanese Imperial Army throughout Asia and the Japanese government's repeated attempts to whitewash their wartime responsibilities. The psychological and physical wounds suffered by victims, their families, and relations remain unhealed after more than half a century, and the issue is now pressing. This collection undertakes the critical task of addressing some of the multifaceted and complex issues of Japanese war crimes and redress.

This collection is divided into five themes. In "It's Never Too Late to Seek Justice," the issues of reconciliation, accountability, and Emperor Hirohito's responsibility for war crimes are explored. "The American POW Experience Remembered" includes a moving account of the Bataan Death March by an American ex-soldier. "Psychological Responses" discusses the socio-psychological affects of the Nanjing Massacre and Japanese vivisection on Chinese subjects. The way in which Japanese war atrocities have been dealt with in the theater and cinema is the focus of "Artistic Responses." And central to "History Must not Forget" are the questions of memory, trauma, biological warfare, and redress. Included in this volume are samples of the many presentations given at the International Citizens' Forum on War Crimes and Redress held in Tokyo in December 1999.

Japanese War Crimeswill be mandatory reading for those interested in East Asian history, genocide studies, and international politics.

Author Notes

Peter Li is editor of East Asia: An International Quarterly and a professor in the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures at Rutgers University, New Brunswick.

Table of Contents

Peter LiPaul SchalowMichael M. HondaIvy LeeMaria Hsia Chang and Robert P. BarkerPeter LiManuel Prutschi and Mark WeintraubLester I. TenneyLinda Goetz HolmesZhang LianhongNoda MasaakiYoshiji WatanabeMichael BerryPeter LiWerner GruhlYayori MatsuiZhao JianminPeter LiDaniel A. MetrauxManuel Prutschi and Mark Weintraub
Prefacep. ix
1. An Overview: Japan's War Responsibility and the Pan-Asian Movement for Redress and Compensationp. 1
I. It's Never Too Late to Seek Justice
2. Japan's War Crimes: Has Justice Been Served?p. 11
3. Probing the Issues of Reconciliation More than Fifty Years after the Asia-Pacific Warp. 19
4. Victor's Justice and Japan's Amnesia: The Tokyo War Crimes Trial Reconsideredp. 33
5. Hirohito's War Crimes Responsibility: The Unrepentant Emperorp. 59
6. Accountability, Justice, and the Importance of Memory in the "Era of War"p. 69
II. The American POW Experience Remembered
7. The Bataan Death Marchp. 81
8. Mitsui: "We Will Send You To Omuta"p. 107
III. Psychological Responses
9. The Nanjing Massacre: The Socio-Psychological Effectsp. 119
10. One Army Surgeon's Account of Vivisection on Human Subjects in Chinap. 131
IV. Artistic Responses
11. Reunion: A Play in 2 Acts, 5 Scenes, and an Epilogue (Excerpts)p. 171
12. Cinematic Representations of the Rape of Nankingp. 203
V. History Will Not Forget
13. The Nanking Holocaust: Memory, Trauma and Reconciliationp. 227
14. The Great Asian-Pacific Crescent of Pain: Japan's War from Manchuria to Hiroshima, 1931 to 1945p. 243
15. Women's International War Crimes Tribunal on Japan's Military Sexual Slavery: Memory, Identity, and Societyp. 259
16. The Looting of Books in Nanjingp. 281
17. Japan's Biochemical Warfare and Experimentation in Chinap. 289
18. Japan's Historical Myopiap. 301
19. War Crimes and Redress: A Canadian Jewish Perspectivep. 315
Appendix The Tokyo Appealp. 325
About the Contributorsp. 329
Indexp. 333