The Japanese Self-Defense Forces mentioned the official taboo ‘Greater East Asia War’… a blatant turn to the right – Kyunghyang Shinmun VRESP TODAY

After the memorial service held at Iwo Jima

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The expression ‘Greater East Asia War (Greater East Asia War)’ can be seen in the first line of an article posted by the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force’s 32nd Battalion Regiment on ‘X’ (old Twitter) on the 5th. Capture

The Japanese Ground Self-Defense Force is causing controversy by using the expression ‘Greater East Asia War’, which glorifies the Pacific War, a war of aggression, on its official social networking service (SNS) account. The Self-Defense Forces have recently been criticized for a series of right-wing moves, such as mass visits to Yasukuni Shrine, where World War II war criminals are enshrined.

According to the Asahi Shimbun on the 8th, the 32nd General Division Regiment of the Ground Self-Defense Force, which performs disaster dispatch and defense security missions in Saitama Prefecture, posted on ‘ He posted, “I participated in a joint memorial service for the Japanese and American war dead.” The unit attached a related photo and added, “We pray for the souls of both Japan and the United States, who sacrificed their precious lives for their country, to rest in peace.”

The ‘Greater East Asia War’ contains the perception that the so-called ‘Great Japanese Empire’, which united the Asian region, fought against the West, and is evaluated as a term that justifies Japan’s colonial rule and war of aggression. In 1940, Japan established a diplomatic policy of ‘promoting the establishment of the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere’ in the name of liberating Asia from the West, and called the Pacific War the Greater East Asia War.

The Asahi Shimbun reported that the 32nd Infantry Division and Regiment responded the day before, saying, “We cannot comment” regarding the use of the expression.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshimasa Hayashi, a spokesperson for the Japanese government, was asked at a press conference this morning, ‘Please tell us the government’s opinion on the use of the term Greater East Asia War.’ “It’s not being used,” he said. He added, “Which terminology will be used in official documents varies depending on the context, etc., so it is difficult to answer the question uniformly.” He added, “I understand that the Ministry of Defense is currently confirming the facts.”

After Japan’s defeat in the war, the Allied Supreme Headquarters (GHQ) banned the use of the expression Greater East Asia War in official documents. Most politicians, media, and textbooks that are not extreme right-wingers use the term Pacific War or World War II instead of the Greater East Asia War.

Regarding the 32nd Infantry Division’s post, there were criticisms even in Japan, such as, “For the official account of the Self-Defense Forces to write something like this, is it engaging in historical revisionism?” and “Is it glorifying and self-justifying the last war?”

Controversy over the rightward shift of the Self-Defense Forces has become more frequent recently. In the Maritime Self-Defense Force, controversy arose last year when it was revealed that the commander and 165 members of the training fleet had collectively visited Yasukuni Shrine, where war criminals from the Pacific War are enshrined, prior to a practice voyage. Previously, in February, dozens of members of the Self-Defense Forces, including the head of the Athletics Defense Department, were criticized for visiting Yasukuni Shrine en masse.

Japanese intellectuals are also expressing concerns about the naked actions of the Self-Defense Forces. Sayuri Saito, a professor at Kesen Women’s University and a constitutional scholar, said in a recent contribution to the Asahi Shimbun, “(The Self-Defense Forces’ visit to Yasukuni Shrine) is a government agency that has abandoned Article 9 of the Peace Constitution and is on the path to becoming a military power, at a shrine where a government agency worships a military deity. He criticized, saying, “It seems like the old system (militarism) that the current Constitution tried to bury is being revived.”


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