Ozawa criticizes Koizumi's visits to Yasukuni shrine

Seems like Japanese politics just got a tad more interesting. Ichiro Ozawa, the new leader of the main opposition party, the Democratic Party, stated in a NHK interview this weekend that he thinks Yasukuni shrine in central Tokyo was not intended to enshrine the spirits of convicted war criminals:

"Koizumi's (visits) are wrong ... Yasukuni shrine originally was not a place where people with the greatest responsibility for leading Japan into wars were honored," Ozawa said. Read more here.

In my humble opinion, removing the war criminals from Yasukuni might be one step towards making the shrine more acceptable. However, it is also terrifying to note what the shrine officially says on its website:

Moreover, there were those who gave up their lives after the end of the Great East Asian War, taking upon themselves the responsibility for the war. There were also 1,068 "Martyrs of Showa" who were cruelly and unjustly tried as war criminals by a sham-like tribunal of the Allied forces (United States, England, the Netherlands, China and others). These martyrs are also the Kami of Yasukuni Jinja.

Another step would be to remove the War Memorial Museum from the precinct. The museum displays war items, even weapons (a tank, an airplane, guns, and a huge torpedo) and all kinds of written messages that justifies Japan's wars. The shop sells souvenirs such as Zero fighter and Battleship Yamato "original goods". What on earth does this has to do with shinto? I know of no other shrine in Japan that houses a museum like this. Sigh...


ykpw said…
Koizumi marks 5 year, taking a dark turn

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