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Montevideo, November 19th 2018 - 15:52 UTC

On the 75th anniversary, Japan's Abe will honor Pearl Harbour war dead but not apologize

Tuesday, December 6th 2016 - 08:16 UTC
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PM Abe will pay his respects to those who died in Japan's surprise 1941 attack at the US naval base in Hawaii, which triggered World War II in the Pacific PM Abe will pay his respects to those who died in Japan's surprise 1941 attack at the US naval base in Hawaii, which triggered World War II in the Pacific
“The purpose of this visit is to commemorate war dead, not to apologize,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told a regular press briefing in Tokyo. “The purpose of this visit is to commemorate war dead, not to apologize,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told a regular press briefing in Tokyo.
The move follows Obama's historic May trip to Hiroshima, the first by a sitting US president, where he spoke of victims' suffering but offered no apology The move follows Obama's historic May trip to Hiroshima, the first by a sitting US president, where he spoke of victims' suffering but offered no apology

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will honor war dead but won't apologize when he becomes the first Japanese leader to visit Pearl Harbor this month, a top government spokesman said on Tuesday.The move follows Barack Obama's historic May trip to Hiroshima, the first by a sitting US president, where he spoke of victims' suffering but offered no apology for dropping the world's first nuclear bomb.

 PM Abe will pay his respects to those who died in Japan's surprise 1941 attack at the US naval base in Hawaii, which triggered World War II in the Pacific, and highlight a decades-old security alliance between the former enemies.

“The purpose of this visit is to commemorate war dead, not to apologize,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told a regular press briefing in Tokyo.

“The visit will serve as an opportunity to demonstrate to future generations our resolve not to repeat the horror and suffering of war as well as an opportunity to showcase the reconciliation between Japan and the United States,” he added.

This year marks the 75th anniversary of the deadly Dec 7, 1941 assault on the US naval base.

On the day of the bombing 75 years ago, Japanese planes swept low over the US naval base, killing more than 2,400 American troops and civilians, a date which then-president Franklin Roosevelt declared would live in “infamy”.

The two-hour bombardment of the US Pacific Fleet at anchor sank or damaged some 20 ships and destroyed 164 planes.

The war ended in August 1945 after the US dropped two nuclear bombs on Japan and, although the countries have forged strong ties in the seven decades since, how the war began and concluded has cast a long shadow.

Abe -a nationalist who has been criticized for playing down his country's wartime record- will be in Hawaii on Dec 26 and 27 for talks with Mr. Obama, who will join him at Pearl Harbor.

In Hiroshima, Obama and Abe went to an atomic bomb memorial - a visit that sparked speculation that Abe might go to Pearl Harbour in return.

The US leader lay a floral wreath and reiterated his call for the abolition of nuclear weapons but did not apologize for the attack and a subsequent bombing of Nagasaki that ended the war.

Shinzo Abe's visit to Pearl Harbour also comes as Japan prepares to build a new relationship with Donald Trump, who will take over from Obama next month.

Trump sent shockwaves through Japan earlier this year when he appeared to call into question the two countries' security alliance, prompting PM Abe to become the first world leader to meet him after the election to confirm the relationship.

Top Comments

Disclaimer & comment rules
  • bushpilot

    The United States did nothing to apologize for in dropping nuclear weapons on Japan in WWII. Japan started the war at Pearl Harbor, they declared war on the U.S., and are responsible for all the consequences. And the Japanese military and their butchery towards civilians showed them for the savage animals they were.

    The United States has “zero” need for an apology from Japan for attacking Pearl Harbor. We already know it for the dark act it was.

    Dec 06th, 2016 - 01:26 pm +3
  • Voice

    On December 7, 1941, two hours after the Japanese attack on American military installations at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, Japan declared war on the United States and Great Britain, marking America’s entry into World War II.

    On December 8, 1941, the United States Congress declared war (Public Law 77-328, 55 STAT 795) on the Empire of Japan in response to that country's surprise attack on Pearl Harbor the prior day. It was formulated an hour after the Infamy Speech of US President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

    Dec 06th, 2016 - 06:09 pm +3
  • Briton

    Hear Hear,
    Shame we did not have a government with Balls,

    We seem to be apologising to everyone for everything nowadays.

    Dec 06th, 2016 - 01:30 pm +1
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