China Razes Newly Built Memorial for Japanese Immigrants

china daily China Razes Newly Built Memorial for Japanese Immigrants

The monument had been inscribed with the names of 229 Japanese settlers who had died in northeast China after World War II. (China Daily)

Last month, a regional government in northeast China decided to build a memorial to honor the thousands of Japanese settlers who died of starvation in the area following Japan’s surrender in World War II. Now Reuters reports that authorities have destroyed it.

The wire service explains what happened to the 12-foot-tall memorial:

“Last week, five men from around China traveled to the province to smash the wall with hammers and splash it with red paint, a public show of anger that led authorities to tear down the memorial on Friday night.”

The men, who were arrested and then released, were angry that public money had been spent to commemorate people who had been part of an effort by Japan to colonize China, from 1932 to 1945. (Also, some 35 million Chinese were wounded or killed during World War II.)

Said one of the men, “The local government should tell the public which official proposed such a silly idea of establishing a memorial wall for invaders.” Some have speculated that the memorial was an attempt to attract Japanese investment in the area.

The man added, “Two days after we went there and attacked the wall, it was demolished, which shows the effectiveness of our acts.”

Apparently not all forms of dissent are prohibited in China.

Article continues below
More from Politics
STAR OF DAVID OR 'PLAIN STAR'?   If you thought "CP Time" was impolitic, on July 2 Donald Trump posted a picture on Twitter of a Star of David on top of a pile of cash next to Hillary Clinton's face. You'd think after the aforementioned crime stats incident (or after engaging a user called "@WhiteGenocideTM," or blasting out a quote from Benito Mussolini, or...) Trump would have learned to wait a full 15 seconds before hitting the "Tweet" button. But not only was the gaffe itself bad, the attempts at damage control made the BP oil spill response look a virtuoso performance.  About two hours after the image went up on Trump's account, somebody took it down and replaced it with a similar picture that swapped the hexagram with a circle (bearing the same legend "Most Corrupt Candidate Ever!"!). Believe it or not, it actually got worse from there. As reports arose that the first image had originated on a white supremacist message board, Trump insisted that the shape was a "sheriff's star," or "plain star," not a Star of David. And he continued to sulk about the coverage online and in public for days afterward, even when the media was clearly ready to move on. This refusal to just let some bad press go would haunt him later on.
Donald Trump More Or Less Says He’ll Keep On Tweeting as President