How My Anti-Japanese Chinese Husband Changed His Mind About Japan

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I never thought my staunchly anti-Japanese Chinese husband would ever call anyone from Japan a friend.

When my Chinese husband awoke on Friday to news of the tsunami in Japan, he did something that, even a year ago, I could never have imagined. He wrote to one of his friends…in Japan. “I heard about the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. I hope you and your family are well.”

Hours later, he felt relieved to read her response: “Thanks for your contact. Now, I’m standing by in my hospital. But I’m fine. And my family are well when I called.”

“She is okay,” he reassured me, after reading her e-mail.

But years ago, when I first mentioned Japan to him, “reassured” is not even close to how I would have described him.

“One of these days, we’ll have to visit Japan,” I mused, just having returned from a trip home to the US, where I passed through the Tokyo Narita Airport.

“Japan? I never want to visit Japan,” he hissed. “I’m anti-Japanese.” He launched into a brief history of Japanese aggression in China, from the first territorial swipes at China during the Sino-Japanese War, to the Second Sino-Japanese War, with Holocaust-like atrocities that Japan had yet to acknowledge publicly. “Haven’t you seen the way Koizumi continues to visit that monument every year? It’s like Germany going to some memorial for Nazi war criminals.”

That’s when I discovered that mentioning Japan to my Chinese husband was the equivalent of throwing an A-bomb into the conversation.

And the explosions didn’t stop there. I watched him scowl at news reports on Sina and Sohu about everything from Japan’s secret military ambitions to Koizumi’s latest offense of the week. He refused to buy anything made in Japan, and sneered at Panasonic, Toshiba and every other Japanese brand. When I begged him to take me out for vegetarian sushi, he would glower at me, saying “sushi?” with such disgust, you would have thought I asked him to dine on sewage.

But after we moved to the US, his anti-Japanese fervor crumbled the first time he met my uncle* Norman — a Japanese-American. At a time when we could barely pay the rent, Norman sold us his used car for a pittance — a Toyota, as it turned out. He gave us free car repairs, and even fixed John’s desktop computer for nothing. John grumbled about the Toyota from time to time, but he became Norman’s number one fan, forgetting that Norman had a personal connection to…er…Japan.

Later, in the summer of 2010, when John presented a poster at an international conference, I almost fell over after his report from the second day’s attendance. “I made some friends from Japan!” he announced, pulling out the business cards from three Japanese researchers who loved his research:

Your study is very interesting. I am wishing that your work is successful.

I want to discuss your research and compare to Japan again!

I am very pleased if my study can be informative for your work.

“They were more interested in my study than most of the Chinese attending,” John confessed.

When he returned, he wrote to the three women by e-mail, and smiled every time I nudged him about his new Japanese contacts — even referring to them as friends of China. “So does this mean you’re betraying your country?” I joked.

Fast forward to this past Friday, when a catastrophe brought John to think of his Japanese friends all over again. So he wrote all three of them. Only one has responded. “I hope they haven’t been swept away by the tsunami,” he wondered.

My Chinese husband, worrying about the Japanese? It’s as if a wave came in and swept his anti-Japanese sentiments away.

“So, does this mean I can buy you a Toshiba someday?” I prodded him, with a grin.

“Not really. I still have standards, you know,” he smiled.

Hmmm. Best not to tell his new Japanese friends.

Have you seen your Chinese friends or loved ones change their minds about Japan? Have you changed your mind about Japan? Why or why not?

P.S.: If you wish to make a donation to help victims in the wake of the Japan tsunami, here’s an article to help you get started.

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65 Replies to “How My Anti-Japanese Chinese Husband Changed His Mind About Japan”

  1. After hearing of the reactions of some Chinese to this disaster, my husband and I had a very heated discussion about Japan Friday evening. It wasn’t that he was a part of the group gloating and welcoming Japan’s suffering (he sympathized and thought the destruction was horrible as well), but he did try to explain to me why so many Chinese hold such a deep hatred of Japan.
    In the end, while what the Japanese did in China is not acceptable, we also agreed that the reactions of some Chinese are not acceptable either (I still think that today’s Chinese need to turn the hate down several notches…to at least perhaps polite indifference). We are all human and suffering is suffering.
    I’m happy to hear that your husband has given some people from Japan a chance and discovered that they are not all that bad or different from him. 🙂

  2. The one positive that arises out of these disasters every time is that it unifies the people. Natural disasters can happen at any time to anyone, and it’s a great reminder that we are all human. If the earthquake happened elsewhere, the Japanese would have felt the same way.

    There is a lot of anti-Japanese sentiment in China, and if it is due to modern events (i.e. military exercises) it’s almost understandable. However, I wish the newer generations would stop hating Japan and its people for war atrocities. Most of these people had absolutely NOTHING to do with the war.

  3. Thanks for writing about this, Jocelyn! It’s definitely encouraging, and gives me hope. While my boyfriend is willing to take me to sushi, treated my Japanese friend well, and so far has not expressed sentiments against buying Japanese products, he was one of those Chinese people who didn’t seem very compassionate towards the Japanese suffering from the wake of the tsunami. To be honest, it still bothers me. I try to see it from his point of view, which is hard because I believe that those suffering now did not necessarily have anything to do with the suffering of China before.

    But reading your article does give me hope that with more exposure to Japanese people, he’ll come to see that he doesn’t have to hate everyone having to do with Japan.

  4. To everyone around here who has family members who are anti-Japanese remind them about the Chinese Exclusion Act, and the anti-Chinese riots….

    There is plenty of hate to go around. One of them was Humboldt County CA….which was sundown as far as the Chinese were concerned as late as 1961…Japanese and Chinese were in the same boat…both run out of town because they look the same..and then we have Morgan County, Indiana where as late as 2003, a Chinese colleague of ours was told that the place was extremely dangerous for her because she is not white.

  5. This is such an interesting post. My Taiwanese family have no discernible negativity towards Japan at all (which is a darned good thing considering my sister in law is Japanese!!!) despite the history of Japan’s atrocities on the Mainland and occupation of Taiwan for 50 years. In fact, so far as I can tell, Taiwanese tend to think very highly of the Japanese. This may reflect their geographical and political removal from the terrible things that happened to the Mainland Chinese and of course, the Taiwanese are different in many ways from Mainland Chinese despite sharing a strong historical and cultural thread (now THERE’S another story for another day entirely!!) but still.

    Personally I have great respect for Japan. No I don’t like their practice of whaling. But I also don’t like the Chinese/Taiwanese practice of killing sharks for their fins. Yes, the Japanese did some terrible things in the past but show me a country who hasn’t and I’ll let them be the judge – being English in origin I know my home country has done plenty of terrible things too in the past. I’ve always had a love for Japan and seeing what has happened and the way they have responded has only strengthened my respect for them.

    It’s really good to hear that your hubby has had a change of heart. You might even convince him to take you out for sushi yet 😉

  6. One more interesting incident I observed back in November 2005 in the UCLA campus…a blonde white young American woman and a young Chinese American guy were discussing “too many Asian women with white men” phenomoenon…they both seem pissed…as they watched a bunch of white men walk hand in hand with Asian women through the middle of the campus…he was pretty annoyed and called them sell-outs, until he found out that they were all Japanese of Japanese-American and then he stopped complaining and he was explaining to the white lady why he cannot be angry anymore…they are all Japanese…of course the white lady did not understand and insisted “you all look the same,” which made him mad and he walked off in a huff.

    I also know a couple of Chinese American families who have disowned one daughter for marrying Japanese but are fine with the other for marrying white…of course the white men’s families have disowned them…and one of them I know for a fact is a US congresswoman…the name I shall not mention!

  7. It’s a combination of factors that lead to this hatred. Of course Japan has its role in generating this animosity, but on the Chinese side, it’s their passive-aggressive that’s fueling this sentiment, the need to find a “noble” way (perceived patriotism) as an “acceptable” venue to vent their aggression. That, and Chinese media, out of inertial & lack of creativity, constantly rehash the same old topics: by falling back on the old WWII themes, it saves time in creating the historic background for the story, not to mention readily available uniforms for the extras. The net effect (perhaps unintended) is a poulace that identifies with the “good guys” in the drama in the same light as Hollywood successufully kept non-Westerners in their “proper place” in Anglophone psyche.

  8. My husband has mellowed on the Japan issue over the years, probably due to meeting some actual Japanese people and discovering they’re not all bad. Last year the exchange student who we hosted for a year when I was in high school came out to Beijing for one day specifically because my parents were in town and she wanted to see them (and me). She came laden with gifts, as is the Japanese way, for the entire family, including my husband who she’d never met. I think my husband was a bit shocked by her warmth and how much she obviously cared for, and still does care for, our family. When the earthquake hit he was the one who actually told me I’d better check up on her (she’s in Osaka, far away from the quake). He has also developed a grudging taste for Japanese clothing since I took him to the Uniqlo store in Beijing, lol.

    So maybe that trip to Japan might happen one day afterall, who knows!

  9. Also when Asians migrate to the US, by the second generation old enemities are forgotten and new enemities either perceived or actual envisaged to form groups which include former enemies…two Asian sorority sisters went to China recently from a California campus…they are second generation Americans…one has Chinese last name and the other Japanese last name…some Chinese were stunned that they were even friends…they would have been even more stunned had they known that they were both mixed Japanese-Chinese blood!

  10. In the true tradition of many mixed children Nina is super-smart! You want to see super-smart, visit Whitney High School in Cerritos, CA, many super-smart mixed Asian-white and Asian-American kids! Considered the best school in the US!

  11. Although I am not a Mainland Chinese, I can understand your husband’s animosity towards the Japanese. The Japanese first invaded Manchuria in 1931 and during their occupation of China, some estimated 13-15 million Chinese soldiers and civilians were killed. The Japanese even used germ warfare spreading typhoid fever and bubonic plague. Their occupation of Nanjing in 1937 brought about what is now known as the Nanjing Massacre, when some estimated 200,000-300,000 thousand Chinese were killed and some 20,000 Chinese women were brutally raped. Here in Malaysia, the Japanese invasion of Malaya in the early 1940s brought about much misery and there were horror stories of the people especially the Chinese, being tortured,raped and killed and young children including babies being bayonetted to death in most cruel manner and women being made into sex slaves or “comfort women” to the Japanese soldiers. Such atrocities are not easily forgotten nor forgiven. But at the end of the day, we are all human beings (hopefully) and when a disaster strikes we feel for the victims no matter who. And it will do well for the Japanese government to come out to openly acknowledge and apologise for the atrocities inflicted on their Asian neighbours during WW2 to help heal the wounds and pain caused.

  12. As a adolescent growing up in Hong Kong (when it was British), I had no love for the Japanese. Our parents suffered from the war. When Judo and Karate appeared in 007 movies, it was all the rave. The Japanese stated that they improved it from Chinese Kung Fu and proclaimed it superior to anything Chinese. Taiwan was ruled by Japan for 40+ years and acculturated the local population so there is only admiration for Japan. My current view is that those who were responsible for the past deeds are mostly gone or very old. I bought my 1st Japanese stereo in 1971 and my 1st Japanese car in 1995. The Chinese government and media have plenty of motivation to keep the hatred going as Japan and South Korea are viewed as U.S. pawns in their China containment strategy. That unfortunately, leads to much misguided animosity. Yes, China is sending assistance, rhetoric aside. Japanese Americans are Americans.

  13. What does this earthquake have anything to do with the Japanese actions during WWII??? I had a friend’s neighbor (since passed away) who harbored some deep Anti-Japanese sentiments because he was a Pearl Harbor survivor. Most of today’s Japanese population weren’t even born during the atrocities committed by the old Japanese Empire. So unless one actually experience these events, these hatred are just products of misguided government propaganda???

    Besides, why would your husband boycott Japanese brands since many of them are made in China?

    BTW: I’m American of Korean descent, so I’m very much aware of the past. My view is always learn from the past, not relive it!

  14. “What does this earthquake have anything to do with the Japanese actions during WWII???”

    Many believe that it is a karma…for not having apologized for committing atrocities before World War II. Some made the same argument about white Americans after Katrinia. The question is whether the same form of racial feelings exist now. About Japanese I do not know. About white Americans depends on the state you live in? Louisiana, yes, Hawaii, no! In CA, Huntington Beach, yes, San Francisco, no! Also white Americans dont have organizations and conferences where they present papers showing “proof” of minority inferiority. American Rennaissance, Cesspool and Council of Conservative Citizens are examples of this. I dont believe that Japanese have similar anti-Chinese or anti-foreigner least never heard of one similar to the American Rennaissance conference in Charlotte, NC…correct me if I am wrong! Also dont believe that Japanese are trying to honor a Japanese general who committed genocide with a car license plate that…like the white Americans in MS are doing…trying to get a name plate in honor of white American mass murderer and traitor Nathaniel Bedford Forrest….again correct me if I am wrong!

    “Most of today’s Japanese population weren’t even born during the atrocities committed by the old Japanese Empire. So unless one actually experience these events, these hatred are just products of misguided government propaganda???”

    Still no apology for the atrocities of WWII…but I believe much better than the southern white attitude here in the US where they honor these traitors, slavers and mass murderers!

    “Besides, why would your husband boycott Japanese brands since many of them are made in China?”

    Excellent question!

  15. I think it has to do with history, as you said, Jocelyn…
    When the Japanese invaded Nanjing in 1936(?). It’s a tragic history and that’s probably why to this day, people are still angry towards the Japanese.

    One of my Chinese friends, he has a grudge against Vietnamese and Koreans…
    something personal he told me, because his grandfather was both in the Korean War and Vietnam War.

  16. You can say its Karma and all that. But still to bring out past grievances into present situations only brings out the worst in people. Just look at the Israel/Palestine conflict?

    I do agree that the Japanese gov. have done a piss poor job in apologizing for its past crimes. But like Kath from the UK pointed out, many countries have committed atrocities so the blame game is never ending!

  17. people change with the passing of time. This whole anti-Japanese thing can’t and won’t go on forever. As more people from both China and Japan come into contact more often eventually people from both sides will come to realize that they have a lot more in common than the differences that separate them. China is Confucian, and Japan is to a degree also Confucian. In fact as a Chinese Malaysian, i dare to say that the societies of East Asia are largely organized in a similar fashion.

  18. There are many reasons behind why mainland Chinese are anti-Japanese, just to name a few:

    1) Their education taught them about the wars and atrocities associated with Japan
    2) Japan has been attempting to re-write history and ignore the facts (unlike the Germans who have recognized their sins and apologized to the Jews)
    3) The two countries are competing for leadership in Asia
    4) The Chinese government sometimes use this issue to divert attention of its people so they are not focused on domestic issues

    As a Chinese-American who grew up in China, loves his Honda, eats Sushi regularly, and follow all news on major Chinese news forums, I would say most Chinese have a mixed feeling about the Japanese. Unlike many who have posted here, I don’t think this feeling will go away eventually. It will persist because both governments are working against any possible solution on this issue. Do I have sympathy for those who got hit by the Tsunami? I do. In fact, I thought the international community has been lacking in helping Japan. But do I still feel furious that the Japanese government would not apologize for the crimes it committed (they apologized for the Battan Death March but not the Nanking Masscacre)? You bet! While it might appear to be conflicting, but that’s the true feeling of many Chinese people. One last note, just because most Japanese today were not born when the wars took place, they are still responsible if their government is ignoring the facts and would not apologize. After all, Japan is a democracy and its government represents its people.

  19. First of all I hated Japanese (that country was the no.3 on the country I hated the most in the world from my top 10 list) as for they did in the past especially so called lack of guts to admit their past sins unlike Germany, so much for bushido talk of nonsense. Personally if I let go my fury I will say they deserved it. But on the other side my compassion and pity win toward them (praise the Lord). I think to be a better man one must overcome the bitter past unless if they tried again to do aggression to my fellow countrymen, let’s pray it never happened or by Good Lord only he the one that can forgive me for things I will do against them. Now to the matter of business I think all of us forget, now it’s not about how the bitter past, for we can talk about it much later on. Now it’s about how and what we could do to our fellow mankind in Japan. So in this forum let’s pray for those who were suffer and gave whatever we can give to them even the smallest deeds just to give them comfort. Last but not the least; My pray always with the Japanese people. Enough is enough already

  20. I know some people from Northern China and Hong Kong who have anti-Japanese sentiments. I’m not sure if it’s understandable or not, because they’re older and not part of the angry youth generation (most were born right after the second world war while a few would have only been elementary school kids when all that stuff was happening). My own family also suffered from those times.

    With the people I know, I can say that most of those sentiments are pretty much gone, or at least put into rational light. Like they’re not turning off all things Japanese nor blaming the young who had nothing to do with those times. Occasionally, a few current events might bring up some uneasy feelings, but it’s nothing extreme. An entire family I know even has a Japanese daughter-in-law with Japanese-Chinese grandkids. I think that’s what old age along with wisdom gained through life experiences does to some people. Healing with time. Works for some people.

  21. I was living and working in Sichuan when the earthquake hit in 2008. It was terrible as everyone knows – 100 000 dead or missing. It was unbelieveable at the time and still is. After a 2week break from school – as it was too dangerous to return any earlier – I remember having a discussion with my students. These were all adults. They were going off on one about Japan for some reason or another. So I advised the following, “You know, when the earthquake happened it was devastating. Your government allowed Japan to be one of the first countries to help them. I believe this is an act that can only lead to better relations between China and Japan. I think your leaders are trying to show you guys that it’s time to start thinking about the future and not so much about the past. Japan didn’t have to offer help but they did, along with other countries.” They didn’t say too much after that. I just wanted them to see that we can hold grudges but what use is it really? Do young Germans want to backpack the world and have people forever saying to them, “So you know Im Jewish and you guys killed so many people…” We remember, we reflect and we learn. Then hopefully we can keep a watchful eye but try to move forward.

  22. My ex boyfriend was from Nanjing and that’s where the Nanjing Massacre happened and I know the people there have very strong feelings against Japan, There was a Japanese boy in our college and he told me he would never talk to him.

    However my boyfriend now is from the south of China and he just felt that the tsunami was a horrible thing to happen. so i guess the feelings differ from place to place

  23. Nice article, Jocelyn, and well written. Thanks for sharing.
    To other readers, as regards the Japanese of WW2 and previous, I think those people are now all dead. It was a different time, long ago. My personal experience of modern Japan is of a cultured, relatively humble people who want to live in peace. You can’t continue to blame or lay hatred at the doorsteps of the Japanese today who weren’t individually part of what was a great atrocity. If you travel too far down that path, the evils of racism emerge, which is just as destructive. Tolerance and forgivenness towards a nation currently in suffering is the best path ahead. To deny that is inhuman and merely pours more bile on bile. Thanks – Chris

  24. “But like Kath from the UK pointed out, many countries have committed atrocities so the blame game is never ending!”

    And that is exactly the reason why most countries suffer. One of the exceptions is probably Singapore which to my knowledge has not mistreated any sections of the population and they have not had any major calamities other than SARS….and it just lasted for two months! Then half way around the world is the island of Barbados…for some reasons hurricanes have missed the island…so much so they say God is a Bajan (someone from Barbados) May be something to Karma?

  25. There is plenty of hate to go around…so just picking on Japanese is not a good thing. Non-repentance happens two ways:

    1. Ignore what happened in Nanjing, but dont celebrate any Wars as a lost cause and dont name any war criminal on your license plate. Or name streets and buildings after war criminals or bigots. The kind of racism you see in Japan is passive racism;

    2. Celebrate wars and atrocities as lost cause. Have organizations pushing the case of racial separation based on intellectual superiority, have statues commemorating war criminals, have schools named after war criminals…this is what they do in the southern US states with impunity…Council of Conservative Citizens, Cesspool, American Renaissance are all refined active racists…and if they can come after you, they will kill all Asians and other minorities in America or at least drive them out of their neighborhoods…would not make any difference, if it is Japanese of Chinese…all look the same to them!

    Luckily so far, as far as I can see, they have not reached the second stage in Japan…and it is absolutely imperative that they not reach the second stage!

  26. During WWII almost every country was guilty of some horrible acts against innocent civilians – some are just more documented than others. For instance, most people seem to forget that, although the Russian army was seen as an ally for France, the UK, and to a lesser extent, America – over 1 million German civilian women were raped by Russian troops who crossed through Germany.

    The Chinese were treated horrifically by the Japanese, especially during World War I and II, and China never really got their ‘revenge’ anytime afterwards. This bitterness has been passed down from generation to generation, and from some of the stories and real life accounts from relatives it’s actually quite understanable. Atrocities like the Rape of Nanking should be forgiven, but never forgotten. People should try to look at it in a way that ensures it should never happen again. I do believe the Japanese ambassador’s refusal to offer a formal apology is incredibly disrespectful and adds salt to the wound – but that’s his fault. I’m sure most Japanese people are sickened and ashamed by the events that happened, even though it was beyond their control and they had nothing to do with them. This sense of superiority within all nations has to disappear if we are ever to achieve peace.

  27. I’ve been teaching here in China for almost ten years. And every time we talk about Japan, the majority of my students express their “hatred” for Japan. Which I do not truly understand. When I speak to them of what my grandparents went through escaping from Germany and travelling to Canada with literally nothing and having my aunt on their journey.

    I explain to them that my grandparents did try to teach us that all Germans were bad people and haters etc… and that is how I grew up. Angry and hating all Germans, no matter how old or how young. And I cannot remember what happened, only I woke up and realised that was not who I was.

    So I changed and realised that the Germans are not bad people. That they are just people.

    When I explain this to my students, their reply is, “You do not love your grandparents at all.” My reply can only be, “They were religious. It is part of their religion to learn how to forgive. It is about being the better person, being able to stand tall and realise, the university students in Japan have done nothing wrong, should they pay for their grandparents mistakes?”

    Many students then say similar to what most say regarding China. They must always say that they hate Japan, but no longer beleive in their words.

    It is a hard shell to crack. Hatred solves nothing!!!! Only causes more problems in my opinion.

  28. Didn’t the Japanese invested like 3000million yen into the Nanjing Massacre Memorial Museum in China?

    Didn’t the Japanese help built the Chinese music industry? You know your Chinese husband’s favorite Chinese songs from the 80s and 90s….well….a lot of them are actually Japanese songs (of course most Chinese people have no clue).

    Wasn’t one of the first international films to be screened in the first international movie theater in Post-Mao China a Japanese film??

    And to the poster above me….you are wrong when you say that most Japanese people are ashamed. If you can read Japanese, talk to some Japanese people. Some of them would claim the massacre never happened, some claim it did happen…but most…feels bad but in reality…could care less about that stuff.

    Just like how most Chinese people could care less about the Tibet situation.

  29. Anyone who can witness other fellow human’s suffering and not feel empathy for them has a problem. There will always be idiots who play the karma card for whatever terrible happens to other countries -it happened when the Sichuan earthquake took place, and is happening now with the earthquake-tsunami-nuclear doom in Japan. Some will comment on the Nanjing Massacre, some on Pearl Harbor, some on whatever past atrocities.

    My Chinese husband has Japanese friends, has a Japanese computer, has family in Japan that we will probably visit one day, and talks cordially with any Japanese he may encounter in his daily life. However, I know that deep inside him, he will feel remorse against Japan for what they did in his city (Nanjing), atrocities to which the Japanese have remained oblivious for so long now.

    I hate it when people pull the brainwashing comment whenever they disagree with something the Chinese do. Many of our Chinese friends, specially those from Nanjing, feel exactly the same way, despite having lived many years abroad and being literate to read in English/Spanish/German.

    I am from Spain and have been told off many times for what Spaniards did in the Americas, from 1492 onwards. I don’t hold personal responsibility for it and, yet, I understand where the remorse comes from. Ironically, the way that part of history was explained to me in the Spanish text books was something along the lines of “lucky them we got there bringing Christianity and a noble language to speak”, ha! It wasn’t until much later that I learnt that part of history wasn’t “exactly” like that. That kind of oblivion to the suffering caused to others in the past is what causes the open wounds today, IMHO, and is the recognition of that suffering what eventually heals the wounds.

  30. I’m glad Jocelyn’s husband had a change of heart.

    However, most of these comments are naive, if well-meaning. Sean has the most-informed viewpoint among the comments, in my opinion.

  31. Having lived in China for many years until 2009 I am not surprised by some Chinese reacting euphorically about the tsunami nor am I surprised at how many who are shocked and saddened.China is working towards balance.If Japan does not write about the atrocities in its history then certainly China does not about its own in its own history texts.When 9/11 happened the university I worked at the students cheered and celebrated long into the night.I am positive this wouldn’t happen today if the same thing happened.In isolated places maybe.A friend of mine told me about a group of young Chinese women in a pub in Shanghai that stood up and cheered when the news broke of the tsunami and watching the cars washed away.This was coupled with their male friends looking away embarrassed.Interesting that it would be women and not the men to do so.The reason I am not sure.Education is everything and over the last 60 years both countries have inflicted terrible injury to China.Of course history echoes through their lives but choosing to use it as source of hate is the first step to ignorance.

  32. Why blame the Chinese…look at the euphoria of some white Americans…it is not just plain anti-Japanese, but anti-Asian…perhaps if the Chinese read this posting, they will be at least fair…have “hate” towards ALL those who have wronged them instead of just the Japanese….

  33. “Interesting that it would be women and not the men to do so.”

    Despite conventional wisdom women are more racist than men!

  34. I’ve been reading comments on this subject for a few days and I can understand the situation between China and Japan. I know a Chinese guy that used to live in Japan and another friend (Chinese) married a very traditional Japanese woman and they had a very cute baby but they moved to Japan at least 4 yrs ago. The Chinese guy that used to live in Japan said that he would love to move back to Japan again because he was a Japanese naturalized citizen. He likes Japan is because of work ethic “system” there. There is a system of respect on every level of the company . If your daughter gets sick, the company’s secretary shall take your daughter to see the doctor so you can focus on your profession and don’t worry so much about the kid’s health. As a Chinese man myself, I strongly feel that Chinese as people and as a country should work on our image and revise every defective thinkings and straighten our infrastructures. Clean up our littering ( must teach that when kids are young) that also be strongly enforced by our Chinese TEACHERS .If you’re rich person or in a high ranking position and you litter, you will be fined and jailed, no bribery can save your ass. We have to revise all our sanitation issues and personal hygiene issues. We can do it in 10 to 20 yrs.When a country is weak militarily and financially, it doesn’t matter if you’re Chinese , Japanese , White , Indian, you will be “CONQUERED” by different countries ! The image of China , the people and the strength of Chinese Companies , the power of China’s military are extremely important in this world so NOBODY will want to mess with you. As you can see, during wwI and WWII , China was politically chaotic and had a weak military. Any countries could come over and tear up China. We also had a lot of traitors in China that would sell out China for their own interests. I would love to see those people executed instantly. I don’t hate Japanese. I hate the fact that Chinese people don’t move forward and better ourselves in technologies (cars,computers, military weapons etc). Chinese gov’t has money ,but majority of Chinese people are still poor around China. Please do not think that I put down China. These are the real problems that my friends and I see and have discussed over few yrs ago and have traveled to China. We really need more talented Chinese politicians that have studies and traveled around the world and have great visions to improve China’s image so we won’t have another Nanjing incident !!!!!!!!!!!!!! Please don’t take every line that I write seriously. I don’t know if you feel excited or blood boiled that you want to break the wall or the monitor in front of you . I am an intensive and direct person so don’t be offended.

  35. You do bring up a interesting point Bruce in that China politically hasn’t developed as rapidly as economically. But that’s another topic!

    I just think this is much like the Anti American sentiment that you see around the world. Its a convenient way of placing blame. Instead of tacking their own problems?

  36. The nuclear desaster caused by both operating mistake and concequence of producing PU secretly. The are not using nuclear power peacefly. They are preparing for next ivasion.

    Japanese Gov ??? Mmmmm A sheep in wolf’s skin.

    How poor all of Japanese are! I don’t know if they know it.

  37. “One last note, just because most Japanese today were not born when the wars took place, they are still responsible if their government is ignoring the facts and would not apologize. After all, Japan is a democracy and its government represents its people.” Sean said this up above.

    I never thought about it like this… you have a very interesting and very good thought here. One that I think needs to be hummed and ha’d over before I say anything else on the topic. Thanks!!!!

  38. An apology from Japan suppose to heal the raping of Nanjing wound? Seriously, I keep on hearing that an apology will make victims of Nanjing satisfied after hundreds or thousands of women were turned into sex slaves and would being raped and threw the babies in the air and stabbed with the knife mounted rifle. Personally, I don’t think that kind of wound can be healed. I’m not even a woman and I know this wound can never be healed. You can forgive but you can’t forget ( always on your mind occassionally). Japan can apologize and say SORRY ;however, 70 yrs later they will do the same act again or worst. Well, are we going to ask or wait for ANOTHER APOLOGY ? In my opinion, all we can do is be prepared and when the enemies ( any countries) come to attack , use the most powerful , deadly weapons and wipe the entire army out. Give them a taste of their own medicine for invading your country. Japan and Germany were prepared for wars (take over the world) since the late 1800’s , do you guys know that?? Anyway, I hope my comments don’t hurt somebody’s feeling today!!!!!!!

  39. @BRUCE, an apology can’t change the past, that’s for sure, but it’s a gesture that no doubt would be welcome by the Chinese… Much better than minimizing the massacre in the Japanese textbooks and bringing flowers to the authors of genocide.

    There are many wars going on… but they are not fought with weapons. It’s a war of economics, commerce, diplomacy, soft power…

    And @Marcus, thinking the Anti-American (or Anti-Japanese or Antiwhatever) sentiment thank can be found in some places is just a convenient way of placing blame for one’s own inability to solve problems… is naive at best, and dismisses the *specific* facts that may have triggered that sentiment.

  40. Germany(Hilter) tried to wipe out the entire Jewish population during WWII was because the jewish people controlled most of the financial districts like banks, gold etc. Germans wanted to destroy all Jewish because they thought that Jewish people were too smart and were driven intellectually. If they killed all Jewish people , they could rebuild Germany again with “real white people” ( blonde hair and blue eyes). Look at the United States now, Jewish people are in controlled of banks, investments( stock markets, insurance) , HOLLYWOOD !!!!You have Jewish Congressmen in Congress right now and during some important Jewish holiday, those guys don’t work and everybody has to wait for the holiday to be over and then continue with national issues. Germany allied with Japan and Italy. Japan’s position was to dominate/conquer the entire Asia . In order for Japan to do that , Japanese had to be crude and inhumane. When Japan lost the War , they switched their focus on fighting another war with Economics. Within 45- 50 yrs since WWII, Japan was producing superior products like electronics( cameras, tv), cars ( toyt, honda, Lexus ) and even rice cooker ,too . Damn it. Remember in the 1990’s , Japanese were buying tons of American companies and real estates and Americans were so scared. The Chinese are buying a lot real estate in America right now . War is about everything either with weapons , knowledge, economics etc, you name it. You have to be powerful in every field so your enemies will think twice before doing something really stupid. I hope China will learn from its mistake and restructure every department. In the past, China had a lot of traitors ( ” run dogs ” translate to Chinese ).You hear executions on the news all the time in China . They have to get rip of some people ( mayors and governor took bribery ) . Rapists and criminals get executed all the time. China really wants to change for the better and we really need to eliminate these people in order for the country to run efficiently. Change is here. Hopefully, this will be my last post on this subject 🙂 hahahahha lol .

  41. I know quite well about the sentiment that Chinese feel towards Japan, but funnily enough most Chinese that I know of don’t really have hatred towards Japan and some even like the culture. Maybe I happen to know the wrong (or the right) people lol

    Anyway I like to see stronger ties between China and Japan. I think many great things can come out of it if both countries working together rather than being enemies.

  42. Jocelyn, I think we need a different topic. This one is getting really heated. It’s turning into a mini forum on that’s too emotional for me. Can we please have something else?


  43. Bruce:

    Strange! In California they are not complaining about Jews but Asians…they are complaining about Asian hordes…they are talking about Asians moving into neighborhoods…everyone thought most white people liked Asians…think again!

  44. I just doing my book on the internet cafe (lack of computer made me do this stuff), any way when I looked at the Grace writing on the Alexandra Wallace, I think what an ignorance woman she was. She already apologized, well for me since nothing hurt at all because sometimes people no matter the background is truly annoying, therefore aside from her racist comments I slightly agree with her. But what made me more upset is the threat to kill, kidnapped and what I hated the most was the rape threat. I had sisters only, and being the youngest of my family, for me whoever insulting my sisters, mother even stranger women and reach to my ear, will call me to arm. Whoever made the threat like that must also remember his love one or his mother above of all. After all without women we cannot exist. So respect your mother and above of all Lord. My old man always told me to treat women with love, honor, respect, affectionate and gallantry. Any man that threat a woman like that regardless his race should never ever called him self a man it’s truly disgust our value as Asian Men.

  45. @Jason, so $3000 Millions Yuan = $37 millions US dollars ? I don’t care if it’s $37 billions US dollars, it won’t heal any wounds. This is about psychological wounds and not about materialistic matter. sold out concert in Beijing huh? What if everything is in reverse in Japan during WWII? Everything that happened in ASia , also happened in Japan . We will throw in $3000 millions yuan and give you a sold out concert in Tokyo. Is that fair? I’m not heating up any arguments here. open your eyes and minds please , Ladies and gentlemen!!

  46. California is regional ,but we’re talking about national issues. Asians ( Japanese , Chinese , Vietnamese , anybody whose Asian etc ) have been buying up real estates since the 1980’s. Taiwanese and Mainland Chinese have been buying homes price ranges from $500k to $4 millions CASH DEALS in Asian populated locations like cities, San Marino, Arcadia, Pasendena, Temple city,Walnut, Hacienda Heights, Rowland Heights, silicon valleys , SF etc. They would jacked up the purchase price by $50k from original bid offer. I like discussions. Doesn’t matter how small it is. Understanding the history and problems are very healthy for us, so we can solve unforeseen dilemma.

    @sean let’s talk about planting flowers , gardening, growing vegatables and raising koi :). Everyday is so peaceful and relax , no worries, no wars. Let’s do yoga , go shopping and live happily ever after. Hmm so calm so soothing :). let’s do that shall we? ** I’m talking in a very very quiet voice ***

  47. @BRUCE

    [email protected] your whiny ass assuming I’m Japanese. And even if I am….yeah sure…it’s fair….I get along with the next Japanese guy as much as anyone. Get the facts straight. I’m just as Chinese you are. Where did I say that it would heal wounds? You ever think about the Chinese people who grew up in Japan? The ones who are living in Japan currently? Are they all hyprocrites too? Are you still suffering from post-Nanjing-syndrome after all these years? Why don’t you get your ass to Japan and go after the people who are responsible instead of coming at me like I killed your goddamn ancestors.

  48. Oh…and if it was the reverse and China went to Japan and committed atrocities…

    Then China Definitely WON’T apologize. When was the last time the PRC apologized for anything?

    It’s funny how these posters here always meet these traditional Japanese hating war-mongering Chinese guys. If these are the only people you know….then I’m just disappointed really.

    Because that’s not China.

  49. “It’s funny how these posters here always meet these traditional Japanese hating war-mongering Chinese guys.” Jason.

    I got to wondering over the past little while about this sort of thought actually. How many people just say that they hate Japan or all the things that people say just because it is easier to say it rather than think/ beleive it??? Or just do this sort of thing, think one thing and say another because it is more socially acceptable to follow than it is to say what one really thinks for the fear of repercussions? And I am not just talking about China here.

  50. Mr Jason,

    I just love how you express your feelings to us. Your comments show your true position and personality already. First of all, I don’t care if you’re Chinese, Japanese or even Mexican and really don’t care who you want to defend. Secondly, I won’t sit here and give you a second of my time to entertain you with any arguments. Being Chinese and Japanese in this world , you have no special treatments. I really don’t know where you learn your WWII history from man. You can call me any names you want like whiny ass or mention about killing my ancestors. “And even if I am….yeah sure…it’s fair” Jason – why do you try to ask those people from Korea , Phillipines , HK etc on that? Coming at you ? You are really sensitive ,buddy. You have your opinions we have ours. If I keep on arguing about this subject here, I rather find a piece of wood or log to talk to. Nobody can change your thinkings except yourselves. Have fun .

  51. I really enjoyed this post. It was thought provoking in a good way. I am the white girlfriend of a Chinese guy (I’ll let him claim me ;)). I often tell him that although I study (in excruciating detail) Chinese history, I will never truly understand it. I work hard to get his point of view because I love him and want to understand what makes him tick.

    I read about Nanjing in high school (on my own – not required reading). And was truly disgusted. In my naivety, I thought well this was XX number of years ago. Most of those people are dead. It’s in the past – let’s move on. I was shocked to hear my boyfriend speak out against the Japanese. Not because he was grotesque but because they never did anything to him (personally), I thought he shouldn’t be affected. I completely forgot that his grandparents lived through the war (albeit in a different part of the country).

    So thank you Jocelyn for explaining how this all fits together and that we can (and do) move past our past. I just wish everyone speaking could maintain your decorum.

  52. BRUCE,

    It was never my expectation to get personal attacks from anyone on Jocelyn’s site so I was surprised when I saw your comments. I believe the purpose of this post was to provoke thinking and the goal of my comment was to introduce people to a different point of view that’s shared by many people. You can disagree with me but I do not appreciate how much you mocked me, Jason, or anyone else who were involved in this discussion. You certainly have your right to voice your opinions but it does not mean you can belittle everyone else.

    If you don’t like to hear something different than your opinion and want to go onto the route of playing personal attacks, there are plenty sites for that. Go to those places! I personally do not care about your plans of how to defend China and kill the Japanese people. Dude, if I wanted to read posts like that from 愤青s like you then I would go to a Chinese website. Trust me, I’ve read plenty of those in the past 11 years. If you want to discuss this topic in a more polite manner, I would welcome that and continue the discussion with you. But if you don’t want to change, this will be my final response to you. I am not going to waste my time with someone who doesn’t bother to convince someone else with reason.

    Just remember, 己所不欲,莫施于人.

  53. Pingback: Hao Hao Report
  54. Copy & paste from the blog of someone living in Japan:
    That is EXACTLY what’s happening in China. The Chinese media just keeps on rehashing the same old topic because they’re too lazy (or on too tight a deadline) to take their time to come up with original storylines, so they use known historical framework to build their storylines. The Chinese government never promoted hatred against Japan.

  55. My father just had a issue with his Korean Church where the pastor actually said that it was God’s anger on the Japanese for their past (not being Catholic and past colonization of Korea). My father was shocked! This coming from a man of GOD. This must be a cultural thing being Asian because Asians ALWAYS likes to mention their pasts?

  56. Another group of peoples that suffer from the same stigma (due to the media rehashing the same ole’ topic) is the Manchus. 反清復明 has no relevance today, yet it’s such a well-known topic that TV & movie producers like to use it to save on “creativity juice”, the result? A largely assimilated ethnic group being loathed for some fictional works.

  57. An agreesive view of some thing doesn’t make any sense.
    Still there are people who know little about courtesy, prefering to be treated as animals.

  58. Well I’m Chinese descendent from Indonesia, my grandpa and grandma also had the same terrible experience with the Japanese soldiers during the occupation of Indonesia. My grandpa and grandma still remember the day when Japanese almost killed them, until they have to hide in the house all day. I know that Japanese did horrible things to them, but as a Chinese blooded Indonesian I don’t hate Japan. I love Japan, I love the people, the culture and the technology advance. Too bad that Japanese right-wing government fabricate the whole story, just to stirring up problems. I also can understand the anger of the 1,3 billion mainland Chinese out there, it must be tough for them. But I just hope in the near future, China and Japan can co-exist together by fixing each other image. And btw, best wish for Japan hope they will get better soon after the Tsunami.

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