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The Chinese are Striking Back at the Japanese

Posted April. 11, 2005 23:33,   


The Japanese government has complained to the Chinese government about the anti-Japanese demonstration, saying, “The government seems to have been assisted the demonstrators,” but the Chinese government has barely responded.

Along with the Chinese, Japan’s other neighbors have also been at odds with Japan, over which the Japanese are blaming their prime minister, Junichiro Koizumi.

China’s anti-Japanese demonstration calmed down on April 11, however hostility remains, from such messages posted on the Internet, “Let’s do another mass protest over this weekend.”

The Hong Kong media reported that there was an anti-Japanese sign-in demonstration on April 10 in Zhengzhou of Henan Province, in which many famous professors, various experts and other members of the academia participated.

Also, in Shenzhen, 20 plus artists from Chinese, Japanese, and Singapore protested against Japan’s distortion of historical facts and produced a painting titled “Four Seas Like Spring (四海同春),” which signifies their opposition to Japan’s becoming a permanent member of the U.N. Security Council.

Chinese living overseas have also taken action. On April 9, board members of Germany’s largest Chinese organization, the Chinese Community Federation of Germany, sent a letter to Kofi Annan, the U.N. secretary general, also stating their opposition to Japan’s becoming a permanent member of the Security Council.

The Japanese government said, “The Chinese police did not try to stop the protestors who were throwing rocks at the Japanese Embassy in China.” They requested an apology, compensation, and a promise for the prevention of similar future events.

Tsutomu Takebe, chief secretary of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, said, “Throwing rocks at the Japanese Embassy is tantamount to attacking Japan.”

The Yomiuri Shimbun reported on April 11 that the Japanese government is looking to send a cautionary message to their citizens touring China.

The Chinese Foreign Ministry claimed that the situation worsened because the Japanese did not address the historical facts correctly.

The Foreign Ministry spokesman, Qin Gang, said, “China is not responsible for the turn that China-Japan relations have taken.”

Meanwhile, Hiromu Nonaka, former chief secretary of the Liberal Democratic Party, said, “Prime Minister Koizumi’s visit to the Yasukuni war shrine instigated this unpleasantness from China and the two Koreas. Unless Japan can become a reliable partner in Asia, it is likely that Japan will become alienated from history.”

Won-Jae Park Yoo-Seong Hwang parkwj@donga.com yshwang@donga.com