Is it true that Japanese Army killed no less than 300,000 Chinese in Capital
Nanking, when Japan-Chino war happened?
No, it's not true. This is the issue so-called "Nanking Massacre(or Rape
of Nanking)", but thanks to study about it much deeper recently, it comes
to conclusion that the issue is clearly lie.
Why did the Japanese army attack Nanking?
Because Chinese (the Kuomingtang) army induced to the war against Japanese
army in Shanghai, and as the result it became the war. There is a big
city Shanghai in China. The city had free area "Sokai" under foreign sovereignty
of France, England, the US and Japan in 1937 when the war happened. So
every country sent the own army to stay in the free area. In those days
relationship between Japan and China became worsen and several conflicts
happened. Chinese government sent enlarged army(150,000 soldiers) around
Shanghai. And Japanese government had to dispatch more army in order to
protect Japanese citizens in the city.(total 4,000 army) As the result
at last, Chinese army stepped forward to start the war against Japan,
raiding on Japanese sovereignty by airplanes. For the beginning Japanese
army had a hard time because of fewer soldiers. On the other hand Chinese
army already fulfilled their armament under instruction by German military
advisory group. But Japanese army got out of the difficult situation little
by little by enlarging the soldiers. And the Japanese armed forces struck
a Gulf of Hangzhou. Chinese armed forces nearby Shanghai were attacked
from the rear, then they retreated to Nanking, the capital of China. The
Japanese armed forces pursued them.
What was the population in Nanking at that time?
Before attacking at Nanking by Japanese Army the population was 200,000,
and one month after the occupation it increased up to 250,000. According
that the battlefield came near to Nanking, most of citizens took refuge
from Nanking, only poor citizen(refuges) were left in the city. Before
the fall of the city there were 22 western people stayed and 15 of them
set up "the International Committee [or the Nanking Safety Zone Committee]".
They provided the area of no more than 4 square kilo-meters as "Safety
Zone", the most of civilians were made accommodated [as refugees] in this
area. It might follow suite the "Safety Zone" set up by French priest
Giacchino at Shanghai Battle, and as the result it was successful to prevent
casualties expanding to Shanghai civilians The people who are claiming
,"Nanking Massacre was historical fact" sometimes said that the population
was 500,000 before Nanking attack, but it is groundless. There are about
130 materials regarding to the population of the city those days, but
in the light of these materials it is very clear the population of Nanking
was about 200,000. Moreover there are 50 materials concerning to the distribution
map of the population, and most of civilians stayed in the Safety Zone.
Of course this numerical value was about, without the census. However,
as for the important thing, there was not decrease after Japan force's
occupation of December, 1937. Decrease of population is not recorded in
any documents of those days. On the contrary, the population increases
by 50,000 people in one month, after the Japanese armed forces occupied.
For example, foreigners of an international committee of those days were
going to ration food to refugees. Therefore, they recorded as for the
population of Nanking, it was about 200,000 before occupation of the Japanese
armed forces and it became 250,000 after occupation. The record of population
by International committee were many in three months, by another person
or another day, but this number was always consistent.
Was there any eye-witness for the massacre?
According to any materials those days, no one in Nanking saw the mass
murders. Such Nanking case as is focused on international politics or
ideological conflicts, is refrain from discussing on the ground of materials
made a few decades later, because their witness may uncertain, fabricated
or deliberated witness influenced on after information, political and
ideological intention. That's why it is very important of studying in
the light of actual materials recorded those days. The westerners of "the
Safety Zone Committee" in Nanking those days have very few eyewitness
at the spot. Besides those few western witness were deeply and friendly
to Chinese, and rather pro-Chinese. Moreover some of them were asked by
Kuomintang government to work for anti-Japanese propaganda campaigns.
They sometimes contacted such anti-Japanese agents who recorded any miner
or intentionally fabricated Japanese war crimes. And later these records
come to be the reasons of accusations by Chinese after the war. Back to
"the Nanking Massacre", even those pro-Chinese westerners gave any witness
of slaughtering civilians by Japanese soldiers except two(2) cases. Even
the two cases were not illegal murders. One of them was the witness of
Reverend John G. Magee's at Tokyo court. As a members of International
Safety Zone, he was freely walking around in the refugee Zone. And he
endlessly sued for the brutalities done by Japanese Army. But he was asked,
"Did you really see them?" at the court, and his answer was the murdering
Chinese happened in front of him was only one who was shot to dead because
of running away when Japanese soldiers on the alert asked to stop. If
the massacre happened against civilians, it only must have happened in
the Safety Zone, in which most of Nanking citizen sheltered. But No foreigners
who supervised and watched carefully walking or driving around the Zone
saw any such mass murders. If the hellish mass killings lasted for several
weeks [the 6 week Nanking Massacre from December 13, 1936], it was just
impossible that there were no eye-witness of mass murder there. It was
John Rabe [he was a chairman of the Committee] who claimed that Japanese
Army killed scores of thousands at the court. However, he reported not
only the number to Garman government, but also few hundreds of death to
England embassy, or the different report of 49 murders to Japanese embassy
at the same time. The report to German government had something to do
with political purpose. Anyway he didn't saw any murders at spot in the
Zone. The western members of the Safety Zone may have had malicious feeling
against Japan. That's why they gathered those hearsay rapes or robberies
and recorded them without verifying if those were true or not, and accused
for Japan criminals. Even those were all true, it was too far from scene
of the mass murders. Because the records of serious accusations were included,
for example, robbery of a cooler box, tea pots or plates done by Japanese
soldiers. Strangely enough they gave no claim against the records [if
there was] of mass killing the civilians. Repeat again, in about 980 cases
recorded by the foreign members those days there were only two murders
before their eyes.
How was the situation of Nanking just after Japanese surrender in 1945?
The Nanking people picked up the topic of the massacre in their mouths
and revenged Japanese?
No, such cases never happened. Not like present Japanese or Chinese, the
citizens (settlers) or Japanese in Nanking those days didn't have any
ideas about "the event" at all. [Even they didn't hear of the rumor of
mass killing done by Japanese army in this city before.] Many years after
the war, thanks to the continual propaganda of Koumintang government,
many of Japanese and Chinese came to believe as the historical fact of
"the Nanking Massacre". After Japanese surrender, Koumintang government(China)
advised Chinese people to indict the crimes?@done by Japanese Army in
Nanking in order to report the evidence to prove "the Nanking Massacre"
for Tokyo Court. But at that time according to China, there were "only
too few accusers" and "many people to deny" against Japanese cruel actions,
and at last next year in January the testimony they could report was only
one as "the evidence". So that China made a great effort to correct the
evidences during the court and finally eleven(11) testimonies could only
be reported. However, judging from present eyes, those testimonies or
evidences themselves are too far enough to prove that there was "the Nanking
Massacre". After Japanese occupation in Nanking(in 1937) there were ten
and a few thousands Japanese resided in the city together with Chinese.
But there were no Japanese heard of rumor of "the mass killing in Nanking"
In 1945 after the war more than ten thousand Japanese residents were concentrated
in a part of the city for a half year. But they never heard of the incident
nor suffered from Chinese revenge. Nor Chinese authority notified Japanese
for the event. They came to know the cruel incident done by Japanese Army
after coming home. In short they knew it from news, books or the propaganda
of "the Nanking Massacre" in Japan. As for Japanese Army head quarter
in Nanking after the war, they stayed in the city for more than one year
for succeeding procedure and got in touch with Chinese authorities. But
no one picked up the incident and broke the friendly relationship. It
may have been considered a kind of performance only for the court, and
the leaders of Koumintang government those days never meant it as "the
Nanking Massacre". Some Japanese soldier of the headquarters strolled
in the Nanking city after defeat every day, but he was not harmed anything.
Many of Japanese armed forces changed to a ship after defeat at the Nanjing
outskirts, went down Yangtze River and returned to Japan. Some Japanese
soldier was made to labor of sewage cleaning in the Nanking city. Japanese
soldiers surrendered, did not have weapons, so they was looked with contmpt
by Chinese. However, they were not heard about Nanking Massacre, and they
were not retaliated in the city.
Were the most of the testimonies for "the Nanking Massacre" brought to
light long after the war?
Yes, that's true. Two things one of which is "When was it recorded?" and
the other is "Is it possible to examine again?" are the most important
whether the testimony is reliable or not. There were testimonies of Japanese
witness eye-watched "the Nanking Massacre". But those who testified came
all to be clearly lies. For example, one soldier who testified it was
disclosed that alived soldiers in the same unit testified that they were
not in Nanking at that time. So if those testimonies examined carefully
among the people with them or their records, it easily came to know they
all were fabrication. That's why, as for Japanese accusations these days,
a lot of anonymous testimonies are made up. On the other hand as for Chinese
ones, most of testimonies of the incident were only recent ones(1990s)
just after People's Rep. of China decided to take advantage of the incident
and widely started campaigning "the Nanking Massacre" as means of political
propaganda. Only we can say it is reliable evidence after examining whether
the accuser is real and he was in the city, or when the evidence was recorded,
and the contents he testified is really reliable or not. Please, you too,
don't believe their accusation easily without examining these testimonies
or evidences from all the points with your bear eyes as the judge. So
you'll know "the Nanking Massacre" is doubtful, rather than real. As for
the testimony the first you must check is the time when it was written.
For example do you accept the accusation of anonymous person or person
who has no witness prove he was there? Does it make sense if you are called
a criminal a half century with such an evidence?
What really happened in Nanking in those days?
A lot of Chinese soldiers died in the battle. And there are many disguised
Chinese soldiers executed after arrested. At Tokyo trial the burial records
as the most crucial evidence of "the Massacre" from China were mostly
men dead and only 0.3% were women and children. And they were found mainly
outside of the castle(city), there was fierce fight between Japanese and
Chinese. That means the dead bodies were mostly war dead, and besides
it also proves civilian dead were quite few. And once soldiers in Chinese
Army were beaten in the battle, they changed their uniform to civilian
clothes and entered in "the Safety Zoon", so sometimes Japanese Army arrested
them and executed some of them. In the light of International Law these
executions were regally right those days. If in the battle field a military
man takes off clothes and be arrested, he is not POW any more [and it
is regarded as espionage who] has no right to complain, if he is killed.
Because of disguising civilian no one distinguishes soldiers from civilians,
and it may course more casualties among civilians. In order to arrest
them in "the Safety Zoon", the 7th Infancy Regiment was dispatched and
searched in 4-day-daytime. The research in the Zone was done under control
of the higher officers. No soldiers or low-rank officers were forbidden
to enter "the Zone" freely. The other accident was happened at Japanese
name "Bakufu-san". Chinese POW raised a riot on the way of carrying them
and many of them were killed and some of Japanese guard soldiers died.
Anyhow, are there so many people believe there was "the Nanking Massacre"?
Yes, there are. Most of Chinese these days believe the number of 300,000
civilian were killed by Japanese soldiers by way of visiting "the Memorials
of Being Butchered by Japanese Cruel Army" or "the Memorial of Anti-Japanese
Fronts" and by means of teaching anti-Japanese campaign in National history
textbooks. And as for Japanese they believe some kinds of massacre at
Nanking, though the number of 300,000 is too much. But the study of the
incident has much advanced in Japan, it became academically impossible
to prove the incident that such number of all gender civilians were killed.
Moreover the pictures or films reported as the evidence of "the Massacre"
those days were proved that they have nothing to do with the incident.
Some were like proving the massacre, but some were tricky(framed-up) pictures,
such as be-heading style is not according to Japanese martial arts or
army uniform different, and the captions only saying the brutality. On
the other hand there are a lot of pictures or films implies that nothing
especially happened in Nanking. For example, one picture is Japanese soldiers
sit eating something by Chinese peddle women and watching children. At
present, some of the propagandists accuse there were mass execution of
Chinese soldiers disguised civilians or mass killing POW rioters at accident
on the way of carrying them. On the other hand they are campaigning the
image as the indiscrimination mass killing of Civilians at Nanking, Moreover
some scholars say the massacre far expanded period from Shanghai to Nanking
battle. It doesn't make sense. It's ridiculous to study or prove the massacre.
At last some scholars argue against our testimonies there was no mass
murders of civilians in Nanking. But the most of them are not able to
show any new convincing materials to prove it, and only they are repeatedly
saying the propaganda of "historical fact" just like the Jew Massacre
by the Nazis. It's sorry but the propaganda seems successful even now.
Yes, we are very sorry but there are
many people believe in the propaganda of People Rep. of China without
After Tiananmen incident occurred in
June 4th, 1989 and the fall of Berlin Wall in November 11, 1989 Socialist
Countries have lost their communist principle. And China also couldn't
help taking Deng's Four Modernizations, or Marketing Economy. China is
not a communist country anymore, so if the people admit the fact, civil
riots or revolutions may have happened and China would fall parts into
pieces like East Europe countries.
So Chinese leaders took advantage of
modern Chino-Japanese history. They made people's attention to build up
China the most patriotic country by assaulting and insulting at Japanese
So fierce anti-Japanese education had
been emphasized on since about 1995. In fact, before resumption of diplomatic
ties between Japan and China in 1972, Rep. of China had never accused
against Japanese Invasion at the war. Even in Mao Zedong era such an accusation
As for Taiwan or South Korea these
days, accusation against Japanese colonial era has carefully been examined,
and nowadays Taiwan people rather evaluate the era highly. And after the
World Cup in 2002 and Open Policy for Japanese culture, Korean people
have calmed down the accusation of invasion to the peninsula or cruel
colonial policy against Japan. Now you see the riot these days. The Chinese
cruel riot after football game at 'the Asia Cup" in August, 2004 was just
ridiculous and abnormal. I can't help saying that It's only ridiculous
occult or completely brain-washed. How do you figure out of their reactions?
That's all. Thank you.
Ooba Toshio (translator)