The historical facts of modern Japan, especially where they concern relations with neighbor nations, remain largely unknown to the English-speaking world. Several factors have contributed to this situation. For a long period of time there were frequent conflicts between Japan and her neighbors. During the conflicts, Chinese war propaganda took precedence over the objective exposition of facts in English-language literature. After war between the two nations ended, a single-party, autocratic regime both heavily censored information and continued to operate China’s powerful propaganda machine. Typical of such propaganda is the preposterous claim that Japanese military personnel slaughtered 300,000 civilians in Nanking, in spite of the fact that there were only 200,000 residents there. This number is still claimed as fact even today.
Wielding considerable influence over the perception of the events that transpired in Nanking was the traditional method of compiling history in China. When a new dynasty (the new authority) was founded, it would compile the history of the one that had preceded it. In 1945 the Nationalist government announced the number of Chinese casualties in the war with Japan: 1,320,000 dead, 1,760,000 wounded and 1,300,000 missing, for a total of 4,380,000. However, when the Communist Party came into power, the total number of casualties from the same conflict had risen to 10 million. The figure had ballooned to 21 million by 1985, and to 35 million by 1993, when Jiang Zemin took office. It is obvious that governments can and do “create” history.
This is an unfortunate state of affairs not only for the Japanese, but also for the English-speaking world, who wish to learn the truth about the relationship between Japan and China, and contemplate its future.
Painfully aware of the need to remedy this situation, we have resolved to make historical facts as they pertain to modern Japanese relations with neighboring countries, especially China, available to English speakers via literature to be posted at this site. By “literature” we mean material from textbooks, historical records, testimonies and so on, originally published in Japanese or other languages ? material that we believe describes the events of history as they actually occurred ? translated into English.
We cannot guarantee that all the information provided on this website is accurate beyond question. Ultimately, readers must form their own opinions about it, based on the validity of the evidence it presents. We would be sorely disappointed if readers were to summarily dismiss the information presented here as “revisionist,” suggesting the employment of the sort of propaganda that is anathema to us.
It is our fervent hope that the information provided on this site will prove useful to a great many people who seek the truth. We have not established this site for the purpose of launching a debate, but we do welcome questions about the sources, or about the interpretation of the information presented here.