The Japanese government continues refusing to accept responsibility for the actions of its military forces in killing thousands of innocent Japanese civilians during the battle of Okinawa. Nobe Prize winning novelist Kenzaburo Oe testified in court that orders were issued by the Japanese military to Okinawan civilians to kill themselves rather than allowing American soldiers to capture them. Yutaka Umezawa, aged 90, who was the garrison commander on Zamami Island in the Okinawan island chain, is seeking to halt publication of three books by Oe that state the military ordered civilian suicides. Oe claims it is of no importance that written orders were issues because military leaders were of the same mind that everyone must die rather than surrender to the Americans.
The Ministry of Education in Japan is requiring textbooks to delete references to any atrocities in WWII that were due to action by the armies of Japan. The record of Japan in dealing with its brutality is shocking. Unlike Germany which has confronted the Holocaust and ensured it is taught in German schools, the Japanese government acts as though any atrocities during WWII were caused by the Americans.