Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Hitler's Admirers & Re-Writing of WWII History

Hey, it’s not only Singaporean school kids who have been impressed by Adolf Hitler. Across the Indian Ocean, in the Indian state of Gujarat, some school text books have praised the Austrian corporal as follows:

"Hitler lent dignity and prestige to the German government within a short time, establishing a strong administrative set-up."

Cedric Prakash, a Jesuit priest, condemned the books of more than 300 factual errors. And worse, no mention was even made of the Holocaust.

The Gujarat government said that ‘anomalies’ arose when the book was translated from Gujarati into English, and were quoted out of context. It said Father Prakash charges are completely baseless.

I don’t see how translation errors could have made the terrible fact of the Holocaust disappear into thin air? Nor could I fathom how Hitler’s bullying, Machiavellian manipulations and political intimidation and murdering could be equated to dignity, prestige, and a strong administrative set-up?

What the Gujarati example has shown is precisely what the Japanese authorities, particularly its Education Ministry, have condoned in some of its new text books. Why the Education Ministry? It approves the use of such revisionist books.

rape of nanjing (nanking)

The revisionist texts were written by the Society for History Textbook Reform (Tsukurukai), a group of neo-nationalist academics, who asserted there’s no point in Japanese being masochistic. No one requires the Japanese kids to be masochistic but certainly every family member of those who suffered under the Japanese brutal occupation wants the Japanese not to be deceitful to facts. Erasing facts of atrocities is deceitful.

What their revised text books have deliberately omitted are the Nanjing massacre, comfort women (what a f***ing terrible word – pun not intended, anger - yes), and numerous accounts of Japanese WW II military brutalities and atrocities. The last have been euphemized as minor incidents, and the aggression of its invasion attributed to liberation of the Asian people, and in the case of Korea, as an invitation (to come and f*** us?).

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