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Even Japanese Citizens Oppose Distorted Textbooks

Posted August. 09, 2005 03:07,   


Page A20 of the August 8 edition of Dong-A Ilbo carried a full-page advertisement by Japanese citizens who opposed to the adoption of textbooks carrying falsified historical facts. Under the advertisement is the explanation that “this advertisement was made with the contributions of 2,114 individuals and 153 groups (as of July 31).”

Over this message are the names, written closed-packed in Japanese, of the 2,114 individuals and 153 groups. There is also an “introduction by the advertiser,” which says, “We are Japanese citizens who are against the adoption of history and civics textbooks developed by ‘Japanese Society for History Textbook Reform,’ a group that distorts history and justifies Japan’s rule over Korea.’”

Tawara Yoshifumi, director of “Children and Textbooks Japan Network 21” and the one who lead the making of the advertisement, said, “We posted an advertisement in Korean in a Korean newspaper in order to make it known to many Koreans that even in Japan there are many citizens and citizen groups that opposes the textbooks made by ‘The Japanese Society for History Textbook Reform.’”

He continued, “There is also a message giving thanks to Korean groups such as the Solidarity for History Education for posting advertisements in Japanese newspapers opposing ‘The Japanese Society for History Textbook Reform’s’ textbooks.”

Japanese citizens and citizen groups, including “Children and Textbooks Japan Network 21,” posted an advertisement with the same message on July 26, 2001 as well. Around 3,000 individuals and 250 groups, mostly based in Tokyo, pitched in for the advertisement then.

Hun-Joo Cho hanscho@donga.com