Japan more brazenly distorts history

History textbooks for middles school approved by Japanese government
Japan's history textbooks for middle school students. (Photo Yonhap News)

By Choe Yong Nam

The Ministry of Education and Science of Japan on Mar 24 approved the history textbook for middle school with distorted contents.

Fourteen out of the 17 kinds of textbooks authorized by the ministry describe that south Korea illegally occupies Tok Islets and some of them even present such an absurd argument that the islets have always belonged to Japan.

Concerning the forcible drafting of Koreans, they noted that "the issue of personal claims was completely and finally solved according to the 1965 claims agreement", while keeping mum about the forcible labour of Koreans at the Hashima coal mine.

They also described the sexual slaves for the Japanese imperial army as "comfort women" from Korea, China, the Philippines and other countries.

Japan's distortion of history is not of recent occurrence. Already in 1982, the then Japanese educational authorities gave a direction to change the invasion of the Asian continent into an "advance" and caused a stir by approving the primary and high school textbooks embellishing the forcible drafting of Koreans as done according to their "free will" and covering up the massacre of Koreans at the time of the Kanto Great Earthquake.

In the present century, Japan's distortion of textbook contents has become more undisguised under the supervision of the government, going beyond the practice of the authorities examining and approving the textbooks written by civilians. Especially, the Abe regime revised the organic law on education and modified the textbook authorization criteria so as to reflect the government's attitude toward modern history.

This time, too, Japan rejected once again the international demand for liquidating the past crimes by approving the textbooks mirroring its sinister schemes.

The international community criticized Japan, saying its distortion of history shows that it has not honestly accepted the denouncement of humankind about its crimes and atrocities during World War II.

(Pyongyang Times - April 4, 2020)

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