January 24, 2014

What Japan Can Learn from German Repentance

L. Linquan, Irish Times

The Associated Press

The German government and the German people deserve a great deal of respect for their attitude towards history. Over 43 years ago, on December 7th, 1970, Willy Brandt, then chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, knelt down in profound apology in front of the monument to the Warsaw Ghetto uprising. This impressive gesture boded well for a brand new chapter of German and European history, for Brandt’s kneeling down in penitence helped guide Germany out of the defendant’s seat. Not only have successive German governments admitted Germany’s war crimes and sincerely apologised to Nazi victims; they have all made unequivocal denunciations of Nazism. Germany’s repentance and apologies were an essential contributing factor in genuine reconciliation in Europe, as well as the...

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TAGGED: Japan, China, Germany, World War II, Europe

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