Chapter 4 About Yasukuni Shrine 第4章 靖国神社について

 I would like to write about Yasukuni shrine. With the Yasukuni shrine, the issue of 14 Class A war criminals is not the only issue. Americans deeply fear Japanese history and culture, thus they push Chidorigafuchi National Cemetery as an alternative.


 America is a new country. Americans are always suspicious of history. In America, historians are not respected. Americans live totally in the present.

 When I first came to Japan in 1974 to Iwakuni in Yamaguchi prefecture, I visited nearby Itsukushima shrine. I was entranced by it. In particular, I was fascinated by the history. The present shrine was established in 1168. Other Americans were not very impressed by it. Oh, they would say it was beautiful, but if one started to compare the history of Japan with America, they quickly would get uncomfortable, then angry.

 Americans always have to emphasize the superiority of America. I think this is a reason why Americans are so destructive when they wage war. They simply do not like other countries' history, they want to erase it. At the time Itsukushima shrine was established, Europeans did not even know of the existence of the American continent.




 The Tokyo War Crime trials was conducted very hurriedly. The truth is, the laws that Japanese leaders were tried and executed for were basically just made up on the spot and it was against the basic concept of law, in any culture. In times past, when a country won a total war against another country, often the losing king or leader was simply killed.

 But America wanted to make a legal show of winning the Pacific war. Racism was definitely involved. Japan as a non White non Christian country, being able to challenge White Christian America, was terrifying for the American elite. So the trials were extremely flawed. Once they began, there was very little doubt as to what the verdict would be.



 Americans become very angry whenever any Japanese Prime Minister, or politician visits Yasukuni Shrine. They see this as a revival of Japan being a military nation. Yet America pushes Japan to participate in collective defense with America. So why get angry about Yasukuni shrine?

 They fear that if Japanese leaders worship at Yauskuni shrine, it is Japanese culture, not controlled by Americans. That is why American leaders push Chidorigafuchi as an alternative. If leaders were to worship there, Americans would be reassured that they are under American control. Because of his visit to Yasukuni shrine, and his conservative views, Americans are very concerned that Prime Minister Abe will start another war.






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