Sunday, April 10, 2005

Goodwin's Law -- doesn't apply to modern Germany or Japan

I'm sitting in the Club Acela in the DC Union Station, being subjected to CNN Headline News when the following news story flashes across the screen.

Japan protection call over protests

BEIJING, China (CNN) -- Japan's ambassador has called on the Chinese government to take stronger measures to protect its citizens as thousands of protesters demand a boycott of Japanese products and shout anti-Japanese slogans.

The protests are aimed at Japan's bid to become a permanent U.N. Security Council member and have been made more emotional by Chinese objections to how Japanese school textbooks recount Japan's 20th century military campaigns

Apparently, the Japanese have never properly apologized for the atrocities committed by Tojo's government during the 1930's and 40's. Including the deaths of 4 million Chinese -- no wonder the Chinese are pissed!) This is in great contrast to the example of Germany, where there is a very strong effort (including cash reparations to Holocaust vicitims.) I guess there must be some cultural difference that allows modern Germans to acknowlede what their country committed (and, for that matter, allows Americans to acknowledge what they did to the Indian Nations), but somehow make it very difficult for official Japan to acknowledge the facts of history.

Anyway, it's curious that Goodwin's Law only applies to the German dictator. When was the last internet discussion brought to a screeching halt becuase someone was compared to Tojo.?


Blogger Ben Sorer Moreh said...

CA, I don't know enough about this situation or the history, but have a sneaking suspicion that this "event" is not about the past, but the future. China is approaching or has already surpassed the "tipping point" on the way to becoming the world's dominant manufacturer and would like to accellerate the process. As a Communist country, this event is unlikely to have been spontaneous, either.

8:47 PM  
Blogger Conservative Apikoris said...

I wouldn't call China a communist country, even if an organization that calls itself the "Communist Pparty" runs the place. More like state-sponsored corpoorate capitalism. You may be right, that the Chinese leadership is thinking of challenging Japan, but I think the issue of what happened during WW2 hits a nerve among the other Asian countries who were at the receiving en of Japan's 19th and early 20th centry colonialism.

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