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沖縄慰霊の日   Okinawa Memorial Day








It was June 23 last week.

It is said that the total number of Japanese war dead in the Battle of Okinawa was about 230,000, including residents and military personnel from Okinawa Prefecture and other prefectures. The total number of Japanese casualties in World War II was as many as 3.1 million.

We see and hear the news about World War II several times a year, including on Okinawa Memorial Day, the anniversary of the atomic bombing, and the anniversary of the war's end.

My uncle, a radio operator then, was killed in the war at the age of 27 when the ship he was on was sunk on its way to Okinawa, and not a hair of his was left behind.

I always remember him when these memorial days come. And at the same time, I feel indignant at the laxity in the pursuit of responsibility for the war that resulted in 3.1 million war dead.

Compared to Germany and other countries, Japan's postwar handling was so lax that even war criminals quickly returned to politics, and their families stood on the stage to decide the course of Japan's future without shame.

We Japanese must not forget the harm Japan has inflicted on foreign countries as well as the damage we have suffered.