‘Worse than death’ : the children who survived the battle for Okinawa | This Week In Asia


  • Entre les atrocités des #soldats #Japonais et celles des soldats #Américain : #Okinawa, « pire que la mort », l’#histoire racontée par les enfants qui ont survécu à la #bataille.
    Between #Japanese and #American #soldiers’ atrocities : Okinawa, “worse than death” : the #history told by children that survived the #battle.

    Kiku Nakayama was 16-years-old in 1945 when she was handed two grenades by a soldier from the Imperial Japanese Army. She was told to blow herself up if she came into contact with US troops.
    “Japanese soldiers told us that the American forces would rape and burn alive any women they saw. I did not have the courage to pull the pin but many of my classmates did,” says Kiku, 89. “Every day I wonder why I survived and not them.”
    Outnumbered by American forces, Japanese soldiers handed out grenades to civilians describing them as “benevolent gifts from the Emperor”. Other accounts detail them using civilians as human shields, decapitating babies whose cries threatened to give away secret hiding spots and stealing food meant for women and children.

    Publié le 06/05/2018
    Vu le 04/06/2018

    Cet article de Prabhu Silvam construit à partir des #témoignages et des #mémoires de survivants, en plus d’envisager cette période avec de nouvelles informations, il nous permet d’envisager l’île de manière #géographique en tant que location #stratégique pour la #base américaine lorsqu’il s’agit de couper les vivres ou envahir le #Japon. De plus aujourd’hui, « historiquement et culturellement », l’#île est toujours considérée comme extérieure au Japon et son gouvernement : toujours « un peu trop près de Taïwan » et « un peu trop loin » du Japon qui laisse l’île dans une situation toujours critique :

    This article made by Prabhu Silvam is constructed from the #testimonies and #memories of survivors, not only does it considers this time with new information, but it allows us to consider the island #geographically, as a #strategic location for the American base when it comes to cut supply lines or invade #Japan. Moreover, today, « historically and culturally », the #island is still considered as exterior to Japan and its government : always “a little too near Taiwan” and “a little too far from” Japan which leaves the island in a still as critical as before situation:

    Despite ongoing protests, the island chain hosts 70 per cent of American bases on Japanese soil. Over the years, cases of rape, murder, drink-driving and aircraft crashes committed by US personnel have continuously caused friction between the locals and its rulers 930 miles away. Repeated calls on the Japanese government to remove the bases have fallen on deaf ears.