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Do Japanese feel sorry for ww2?

Do Japanese Feel Sorry for WW2?

World War II is one of the most significant events in history, and its aftermath has affected many countries worldwide. Japan was one of the major players in WW2, and its actions during the war have been a topic of discussion for decades. One of the most common questions that arise is whether the Japanese feel sorry for their actions during the war. In this article, we will explore this question in detail.

Understanding Japanese Culture and Apologies

In Japan, apologizing is an essential part of their culture. It is not uncommon for Japanese people to apologize even when they are not at fault. The concept of taking responsibility for one’s actions is deeply ingrained in their culture, and this extends to their attitude towards World War II.

Japanese Snack Box

The Official Apology

In 1995, the Japanese government issued an official apology regarding their actions during WW2. The statement, known as the Murayama Statement, was issued by then-Prime Minister Tomiichi Murayama. The statement expressed remorse for Japan’s actions during the war and acknowledged that they caused tremendous damage and suffering to many countries.

Public Opinion on the Apology

The official apology was widely covered in the Japanese media and received mixed reactions from the public. Some people welcomed the statement, seeing it as a step towards reconciliation with other countries affected by Japan’s actions during WW2. Others criticized it, arguing that it was too little too late and that it did not go far enough in acknowledging Japan’s wrongdoing.

The Yasukuni Shrine Controversy

The Yasukuni Shrine is a Shinto shrine located in Tokyo that honors Japan’s war dead, including those who were executed as war criminals after WW2. Visits to the shrine by Japanese politicians, including prime ministers, have caused controversy in neighboring countries, who see it as a sign of Japan’s failure to take responsibility for its actions during the war.

The Role of Education

The Japanese education system has also been criticized for its handling of WW2. Some critics argue that the system paints Japan as a victim of the war and downplays its role as an aggressor. Others argue that the education system has become more balanced in recent years and is now more critical of Japan’s actions during the war.

The Comfort Women Issue

One of the most controversial issues related to WW2 is the comfort women issue. During the war, thousands of women from Korea, China, and other countries were forced into sexual slavery by the Japanese military. The issue remains a sensitive topic in Japan and has been a source of tension with neighboring countries.

Responses from Japanese Politicians

Some Japanese politicians have made controversial statements regarding WW2 and Japan’s role in it. For example, former Tokyo Governor Shintaro Ishihara described the Nanking Massacre as a “fabrication” and claimed that it never happened. Such statements have been widely criticized by other countries affected by Japan’s actions during the war.

The Impact on International Relations

Japan’s attitude towards WW2 has had a significant impact on its relations with other countries. In particular, its relationship with South Korea and China has been strained due to issues such as the comfort women and Yasukuni Shrine controversies.

The Role of Historical Revisionism

Historical revisionism is a term used to describe efforts to reinterpret historical events in a way that downplays or justifies past actions. In Japan, there have been efforts by some politicians and scholars to revise the country’s actions during WW2. This has led to tensions with other countries and has been a source of controversy within Japan itself.

The Importance of Acknowledgment

Many people believe that acknowledging past wrongdoing is an essential step towards reconciliation and healing. While the Japanese government has issued an official apology, some argue that more needs to be done to ensure that Japan takes full responsibility for its actions during WW2.

The Way Forward

Looking to the future, it is clear that Japan’s attitude towards WW2 will continue to be a topic of discussion for years to come. While there are many challenges ahead, there are also opportunities for Japan to build stronger relationships with other countries and work towards a more peaceful future.


In conclusion, the question of whether Japanese people feel sorry for their actions during WW2 is complex and multifaceted. While there have been official apologies and acknowledgments of wrongdoing, there are also ongoing controversies and debates about Japan’s role in the war. Ultimately, it is up to each individual to form their own opinion on this matter, based on their understanding of history, culture, and politics.

Has Japan ever apologised for ww2?

General MacArthur was informed by Emperor Hirohito that he was willing to formally apologize for Japan’s actions during World War II, including the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941.

How did Japan feel after ww2?

At the time of Japan’s surrender in August 1945, the country was ravaged and devastated. Over 2.5 million Japanese people had lost their lives, including over 500,000 innocent civilians, since the attack on Pearl Harbor. Many major cities, including Tokyo, had been completely destroyed by fire. Additionally, one-third of Japan’s total wealth had been decimated.

Do Japanese know they lost ww2?

The Japanese government during a period of war found themselves in a defensive position as they began to realize that they were unlikely to win. However, they did not have a plan that would satisfy the military to end the war.

How did Japan react to losing ww2?

The Japanese experienced a significant shock upon learning about their defeat in World War II, which led to a range of psychological responses, including suicide. They also displayed various defense mechanisms, such as denial, negation, isolation, rationalization, intellectualization, and regression.

Did Japan get punished after ww2?

The initial period after the end of World War II, spanning from 1945 to 1947, brought about significant changes to Japanese society and government. The Allies held war crimes trials in Tokyo as a punishment for Japan’s previous militarism and territorial expansion.

How does Japan feel about America?

Japan is a strong ally of the United States in the fight against communism during the Cold War. Japan depends on US military power and maintains only a small defense force of its own. Additionally, Japan prioritizes economic diplomacy in its global interactions.

It is important to note that not all Japanese people hold the same views on WW2 and their country’s actions during the war. Many Japanese citizens today were not alive during the war and have grown up in a very different world than their ancestors. Some may feel a deep sense of shame and remorse for what their country did, while others may feel that Japan was justified in its actions.

However, it is crucial to separate the actions of the Japanese government during WW2 from the Japanese people themselves. Just as it is unfair to blame all Germans for the atrocities committed by the Nazi regime, it is unfair to hold all Japanese people responsible for the actions of their government during WW2.

Moving forward, it is essential for Japan to continue acknowledging its past mistakes and working towards reconciliation with other countries affected by its actions during WW2. This includes addressing controversial issues such as the comfort women and Yasukuni Shrine controversies, as well as ensuring that future generations learn about Japan’s role in the war in a balanced and accurate way.

Ultimately, the road to reconciliation and healing is a long one, but it is one that must be taken if we are to build a more peaceful world. By acknowledging past mistakes and working towards a brighter future, Japan can play an important role in promoting peace and understanding in our increasingly interconnected world.

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