Movie shows wartime Admiral Yamamoto in new light

Movie shows wartime Admiral Yamamoto in new light

TOKYO —

“Isoroku,” a Japanese film about the life of Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto, who orchestrated the Pearl Harbor attack and was commander-in-chief in the early years of what many Japanese call the Pacific War, will start showing in Japan on Dec 23.

The movie, subtitled “The truth about the Pacific War on the 70th anniversary” and starring Koji Yakusho in the title role, claims Yamamoto was opposed to war with the U.S. and attacked Pearl Harbor to end the Pacific War as quickly as possible.

The film, made on a budget of 1 billion yen, follows the life of Yamamoto, from his early days at Harvard University to his growth into a leader, and to his death in the Solomon Islands in 1943.

A spokesman for production company Toei said the film portrays Yamamoto as a man torn between war and Japan’s future. The spokesman said the film shows Yamamoto as an individual who had a global perspective, looked forward decisively and displayed real leadership.

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

  • -4

    sensei258

    I was ready to have an open mind about this, until I read this line "opposed to war with the U.S. and attacked Pearl Harbor to end the Pacific War as quickly as possible." So, because he was opposed to a war with the US (which he was about to start), he wanted to beat them as soon as possible. That was very considerate of him.

  • -3

    koiwaicoffee

    How cute, he is a real man and a hero for Japan! He also seems to be impersonated as a XXI century thinker, odd when not even in 2011 you see men like that over here, not to mention in the army.

  • 7

    plasticmonkey

    Almost every Japanese movie made about WWII follows the theme of people who were not responsible for causing the war. For once I'd like to see a film about who was responsible instead of this constant excuse-making and self-pity.

  • 11

    Patrick Hattman

    claims Yamamoto was opposed to war with the U.S. and attacked Pearl Harbor to end the Pacific War as quickly as possible.

    What is new about this? Yamamoto spent many years in the U.S. as a Harvard student and later in posts for the Imperial Japanese Navy. He knew America very well. As such, he wanted to strike decisively against the U.S. in 1941 to get an agreement beneficial to the Japanese Empire before the U.S. could mobilize its human resources and industrial might and destroy Japan. Japan failed.

  • 7

    Laguna

    Tora! Tora! Tora! portrayed him in much the same light.

  • 7

    Patrick Hattman

    I read a book a decade ago about Yamamoto by Hiroyuki Agawa. Its title is *The Reluctant Admiral: Yamamoto and the Imperial Navy *.

    It will be interesting to see if this movie tries to create a different narrative about Yamamoto's life, and more specifically, his decisions leading up to and after Pearl Harbor until he was killed. The above book follows the title in painting a portrait of a man who didn't want the war with the U.S. for the reasons I stated in the earlier post, but had a duty to see things through to the end to the best of his ability.

  • 0

    Virtuoso

    Yamamoto was way overrated as a military strategist. As one example I give you the battle of Midway, in which he split the forces under his command into four groups, one of which attacked the Aleutians and was therefore in no position to assist two other groups, which got clobbered. (He was at the helm of the 4th group aboard the battleship Yamato, which was too far in the rear to do anything.) At least Yamamoto had the good fortune of being killed in 1943, before the home islands were bombed (with the exception of the Doolittle raid in 1942), and therefore went to his death a national hero with his reputation intact. If he had survived to the end of the war and not done the honorable thing and killed himself, he would very likely have appeared in the docket at the Tokyo War Crimes tribunal, and possibly have been hanged.

  • -3

    oldsanno

    >

    When Japanese remains were repatriated from the Mariana Islands after the war, roughly 60 percent were missing their skulls.

    There were also 1,336 reported rapes during the first 10 days of the occupation of Kanagawa prefecture after the Japanese surrender.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:AWM_072837.jpg

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allied_war_crimes_during_World_War_II

    plasticmonkey et al

    Almost every Japanese movie made about WWII follows the them

    Almost every Hollywood movie about WW2 portrays Allies as good guys fighting the "good war". And the truth is they were no better or worse than their enemy.

  • -6

    Elbuda Mexicano

    New light?? Ok, what ever! Give a new light to Hiroshima? Give a new light to Nagasaki? Yes, America was not that bad, they just wanted to get the war over, see if this kind of movie would be real popular here in Japan. By the same token, Yamamoto was part of an era when Japan actually thought it could take on the USA, take over Korea, China, etc..now we all know that is just a myth and Japan and the USA must be friends to keep out them Chinese etc..from Okinawa, right??

  • 1

    tmarie

    Oh dear... another war movie from Japan trying to show those in powers of position in a sympathetic light. Nothing new here people. The locals will lap it up, go home and think Japan was the ultimate victim based on all the false info they've been given from childhood to now.

    What WOULD be new and interesting is for a Japanese director to make a movie about, say, the rape of nanking, the Japanese invasion of Okinawa and telling the locals to off themselves, the lives of the kamakazi pilots of were basically just kids and the first suicide bombers...

  • 3

    NetNinja

    Changing history, one book, one movie at a time. As people die off and tragic events fade into oblivion there are people who seek to take advantage of this.

  • 5

    Patrick Hattman

    What WOULD be new and interesting is for a Japanese director to make a movie about, say, the rape of nanking, the Japanese invasion of Okinawa and telling the locals to off themselves,....

    Why? It's time for people to move on from the World War II era. Those who want to study and learn more and form their own opinions can do so at any age.

    I look forward to seeing the Yamamoto movie. I bet I'll enjoy it as much as I did the Otokotachi no Yamato several years ago. I didn't agree with some of its "facts," but it was still entertaining.

  • -1

    herefornow

    sensei258 -- spot on. He was so morally conflicted that he decided the best course of action was to launch a sneak attack and kill roughly 2,500 people because he was opposed to a war. Unfortuantely I would predict that a large segment of the Japanese audience will actually be sympathetic to that kind of reasoning. Which, of course, is the problem with post-war Japan and its victim mentality that has been promulgated.

  • 4

    Virtuoso

    I didn't agree with some of its "facts," but it was still entertaining.

    The problem is, millions of theater goers walk out after the movie thinking they've been shown the facts, and will go on believing so afterwards. A pity they can't go to a library and obtain a more balanced view. The most widely read work re Yamamoto is Hiroyuki Agawa's biography "The Reluctant Admiral."

  • 0

    tmarie

    Why? It's time for people to move on from the World War II era. Those who want to study and learn more and form their own opinions can do so at any age.

    I agree it is time to move one but Japan insists on them being the victims so I think it would be interesting for a Japanese director to take the challenge and show they aren't weren't the victim. Plus, it is the last war they've been in so they don't get Iraq and the like when it comes to the public's interest.

  • 1

    Dara Danh

    Interesting! Will watch when it's out.

  • 6

    serendipitous

    The point is it wasn't his decision to go to war but he was ordered to (or, at least, outnumbered in any vote to go to war) so he planned the most effective attack he could think of and that, of course, became Pearl Harbor. And, from a military point of view, his strategy worked. It surprised the US and took out most of their vessels there. But he knew Japan couldn't defeat the US in the long term so one could say that Pearl Harbor was a kind of suicide mission for Japan.

  • 7

    Bebert61

    I don't see what is so "new" about this presentation of Yamamoto or why some posters are so miffed at a Japanese movie for presenting it. It is well known that Yamamoto thought going to war with the United States would be a disaster for Japan, just as a prolonged campaign in Russia was going to be a disaster for Germany. Those miffed about this presentation of Yamamoto must be new to history or just not read very much.

  • 1

    anglootaku

    If any of you went to Yaskuni Jinja, it is also stated there.

  • -5

    BernieK

    claims Yamamoto was opposed to war with the U.S. and attacked Pearl Harbor to end the Pacific War as quickly as possible.

    Yeah, when the Japanese Navy couldn't win the war as soon as possible they were running out of ammo. In the Philippines, the Japanese Army were putting filipinos on crosses and bayonetting them to death in front of filipinos to see. They wanted to put fear in peoples minds there. And the filipinos who weren't captured by the Imperial Japanese Army were living nomadically for five years. Man, I couldn't live five days after 3/11 in the evacuated shelters up here in Tohoku .

    As quickly as possible my behind. Really do you think being bombed to death at Pearl Harbor is quick. Some people died slowly during that war. They got what they deserved in the quickest way of them all at Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Karma. Back at you Japanese Imperial Military! The Americans perfected "quickly as possible".

  • 6

    Al Stewart

    As Hollywood movies go, I think that Letters from Iwo Jima was good and pretty balanced story telling of the Japanese side of the War. Many Hollywood films about Historical events are rubbish but the thing about Hollywood is that you do get some outspoken films that try to tell the real story. On the other hand most JP films are strict about japanese taste and most about historical events are a bit like propaganda. There are very few movies in japan that display the JP government in a bad light (well there was that awful Battle Royal Highschool II, but then in the end they blamed it on the US). Where as in the states, every year there are at least 5 different movies showing the Gov. screwing over the people. lol

  • -2

    YuriOtani

    herefornow, suppose the Japanese should of given the Americans the details of the attack a week in advance? The politicians made it a "sneak" attack. Strange after WWII there have been no delclarations of War from the United States. So the American attack on Iraq was a sneak attack, right? Funny how times change...

  • 1

    hoserfella

    Almost every Hollywood movie about WW2 portrays Allies as good guys fighting the "good war". And the truth is they were no better or worse than their enemy.

    oldsanno - A shockingly naive, yet predictable, comment from someone obviously not familiar with the holocaust, sneak attacks, Bataan Deathmarch, Rape of Nanking etc. If you are Japanese, Id implore you to read a history book. If you are a self-hating western Japanophile looking to score points....pathetic.

  • 1

    m5c32

    I don't think Yamamoto was so much opposed to war with the US as much as he realized, or, at least believed, that a war which engaged the US was a futile war which would end up tragically for Japan.

    That is to say, it wasn't a philosophical stand as much as it was an understanding of the consequential realities of such endeavor.

  • 0

    smithinjapan

    Patrick: "Why? It's time for people to move on from the World War II era. Those who want to study and learn more and form their own opinions can do so at any age."

    I agree with your comments to an extent, but you say it's time for people to move on from war when someone suggests a Japanese movie about the Rape of Nanjing, but praise the idea of a movie glorifying the man who launched the Pearl Harbor attack? True, people will study and learn more and form their own opinions if they so desire, but they won't do a good job when all they have to study are one-sided arguments made by people who claim always to be the victim.

    Now we're seeing a movie being made about a man who supposedly didn't want war but launched an attack killing THOUSANDS. An above poster is exactly right in saying the atomic bombings are the same kind of logic -- they bombed and killed HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS in the name of peace... somehow just doesn't fly, does it?

    I don't mind Koji Yakusho, but I'll pass on this movie, thanks.

  • 1

    smithinjapan

    hoserfella: "If you are Japanese, Id implore you to read a history book."

    So long as it's not a Japanese history book, I would too. Or at the very least, read history books from varying nations to compare and contracts accounts. I'm sure many Japanese would be very surprised to find many of the atrocities you mention above, since they are barely touched on if at all in J-texts.

  • 2

    SamuraiBlue

    when it's called a preemptive attack it's all right but the word sneak attack it becomes a big no-no. Time does change doesn't it.

    Another thing is that when the US sent an ultimatum(Hull note), Japan really did not really need to declare anything since technically the US and Japan was at a state of war declared by the US.

  • 3

    Patrick Hattman

    but praise the idea of a movie glorifying the man who launched the Pearl Harbor attack? True, people will study and learn more and form their own opinions if they so desire, but they won't do a good job when all they have to study are one-sided arguments made by people who claim always to be the victim.

    I'm not trying to "praise" anything related to the movie, smitty. Many who watch movies where the focus is on particular events from history and historical figures will take the material presented and accept it as the gospel truth. Some with a keener interest in the subject material will not. I have confidence that the "some" as far as the Japanese are concerned is a large enough number that the debate will not become dangerously one-sided on things like WWII. (This is a statement based on 13 years of experience living and working with the Japanese and talking about these things time and time again.)

    Of course I still believe the Japanese have never fully atoned for the conduct of their military in WWII. I don't believe there has ever been a true expression of sincere remorse. And they never will, from my American perspective.

    I know there is still quite a bit of denial in many circles about the truth of Unit 731, Nanking and the Rape of Manila, to name a few. But there are enough books, movies and Internet sites out there with varying interpretations of these for people who want to learn, just as there are about things like Yasukuni/Class A/B/C war criminals that we've had so many talks about over the years, especially with Ossan.

    A lot of the truth went up in flames in bonfires in '45. More of it lies in inaccessible reams of info that the U.S. took and then returned in the '50s. But now, heading into 2012, does it really make much of a difference for other nations to keep harping on the same points about things that happened so long ago? I don't think it does. We need to live in the 21st century, and we need to allow the Japanese to move forward too.

    Let them have this movie about Yamamoto. Let them think for themselves about what is right and wrong about the interpretations of the man and his huge impact on 20th century history. Some good will come of it, guaranteed.

  • -1

    melonbarmonster

    Nice I wonder how the movie will deal with the small inconvenient truth that Japan propped up their emperor as a deity and themselves as a superior and divine race destined to rule the world while being allied with Nazis. Will they show the part where the Japanese navy floats pestilence balloons into the US in hopes of causing plagues with biological weapons developed on Chinese and Korean civilians at Unit 731?

  • 0

    woundedsamurai1

    Anyone know if Isoroku Yamamoto has any connect with/to Yamamoto Gonnohyoe.

    @hoserfella - not sure I like your comments.

  • -4

    akashingo

    claims Yamamoto was opposed to war with the U.S. and attacked Pearl Harbor to end the Pacific War as quickly as possible.

    Attacked Pearl to end an up then non-existant war? Whatever!

    Here we have yet another military man obeying orders against his better judgement, believeing that military men should not even be allowed to have judgement, which is why we have so many wars, because these guys don't have the spine to say no.

    Its clear enough to me that the guy was not exactly anti-war, so I hope he is in hell now.

  • 3

    akashingo

    Yamamoto was way overrated as a military strategist. As one example I give you the battle of Midway,

    Its pretty well established that what won the Battle of Midway first and foremost was not poor planning on Yamamoto's part, but rather the fact that the Japanese code had been broken, and a clever trick played on the Japanese by one Jasper Holmes whose work revealed that the Japanese would attack Midway before the middle of June. Then you got pure the pure luck of American dive bombers finding the Japanese carriers at the perfect time with planes and bombs all over the top deck. Up to then American airmen were getting massacred.

    Also the Japanese inability to replace losses is cited as a major weakness at Midway. Never heard of anyone try to declare Yamamoto a poor strategist.

  • -6

    Elbuda Mexicano

    @Horsefella makes very points!! The Bataan Death March says it all!!! Just what evil racist Japanese Imperial Army did to the poor Filipinos is an outrage!! Makes Pearl Harbor look like a walk in the park!! I wonder if Tokyo is ready to white wash this horrible part of recent Japanese history with a new movie???

  • 0

    BlueWitch

    The more I read how our "honorable" Imperial army did to our Asian neighbors, the more I want to vomit!

    It's disgusting how this government have never printed the truth on the history books. Americans did, right? Why not Japan? Why is this government scared of? All NHK shows is the same old victim portraying A-bomb documentaries, music shows full with old people and boring songs.

  • -1

    oberst

    Big difference betwwen the japanese and the german in how they view WW2 in general................must be a cultural thing.

  • 0

    woundedsamurai1

    Bad people leading good. Problem is we're too dumb to fathom out that the bad people of the equation are often in cahoots. Study it enough and you'll find out. Movies like this are made to stir the emotions. National pride, heroes, religion etc, are all tools to fragment and keep your head in a spin. Take a look at the picture of Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto on wikipedia - what do you see?

  • -1

    NeoJamal

    Almost every Japanese movie made about WWII follows the theme of people who were not responsible for causing the war. For once I'd like to see a film about who was responsible instead of this constant excuse-making and self-pity.

    Tojo and Konoe are nowhere near as interesting as Yamomoto's dog, if he ever had one.

  • 0

    woundedsamurai1

    @NeoJamal No can do there. Probably best moving along. Probably best not too look into who set the Japanese up, who lent them the money to buy the capability. The spoils of war go neither to the victor or the loser.

  • 2

    GW

    Almost every Hollywood movie about WW2 portrays Allies as good guys fighting the "good war". And the truth is they were no better or worse than their enemy.

    oldsanno,

    what the.............you've got to be kidding, Japan is in a league of its own with the mass murder, slaughter they rained in the 1930-40's generally believed to be 20-30million dead, never mind the brutalized & savaged, none of the allies can compare with that for pete sake!

    What really gets me is many Japanese readily understand the maddness of what Hitler's Germany did yet are boderline clueless as to what Japan did & that is why Japan has so much trouble putting its past in the past, because they have NEVER acknowledged it!

  • 4

    gaijinfo

    I saw a documentary on the history channel, about ten years ago, that covered pretty much the same topic. Yamamoto knew that Japan couldn't win a war against the U.S., yet he followed orders to charge ahead anyway. Hardly an admirable military leader.

    As far as planning a perfect attack, Yamamoto's attack failed to take out Pearl Harbor's infrastructure (oil fields, munitions facilities, repair facilities) which allowed the U.S. to use Pearl Harbor as a future staging area against Japan.

    Far from a perfect attack.

  • 4

    Shumatsu_Samurai

    As far as planning a perfect attack, Yamamoto's attack failed to take out Pearl Harbor's infrastructure

    Yamamoto did not lead the attack. He planned it. It was Admiral Nagumo's decision to call off the attack after the second wave. Indeed in hindsight Yamamoto thought Nagumo had made a big mistake not to attack the naval base's dry docks, fuel stores, etc.

    Bebert is quite right. It is not news that Yamamoto was sceptical of the merits of going to war with the US. This has been covered before. Someone also mentioned the film Tora! Tora! Tora!

    And, yes, there's nothing contradictory in launching an attack to finish a war off quickly if you wouldn't have voted for war in the first place. Yamamoto was a military man. When a decision was taken to go to war, he took the line of action he thought would benefit his country the most in that war.

    Someone criticised Yamamoto for a sneak attack. Huh? You do realise in war that the most effective way of winning is by sneak attacks, right? And he had nothing to do with the late arrival of the declaration of war.

  • 1

    Virtuoso

    Anyone know if Isoroku Yamamoto has any connect with/to Yamamoto Gonnohyoe.

    Absolutely not. He was actually born with the surname Takano and was adopted into his wife's family, hence Yamamoto.

  • 0

    Virtuoso

    And he had nothing to do with the late arrival of the declaration of war.

    Shumatsu@it was not a declaration of war. The Japanese ambassador Nomura presented Secretary of State Cordell Hull with a message that broke off negotiations. It didn't even sever diplomatic relations. Clear violation of the Hague protocol (of which Japan was a signatory) any way one looks at it.

  • 1

    herefornow

    herefornow, suppose the Japanese should of given the Americans the details of the attack a week in advance? The politicians made it a "sneak" attack. Strange after WWII there have been no delclarations of War from the United States.

    Yuri -- what are you talking about? "Suppose" that the Japanese had given the Americans the details? And the U.S. declared war the NEXT DAY not after the war? You are a perfect example of the re-invent history thinking that is all too pervasive in Japan.

  • 3

    herefornow

    Almost every Hollywood movie about WW2 portrays Allies as good guys fighting the "good war". And the truth is they were no better or worse than their enemy

    oldanno -- really? Do you really believe that? As flawed as the post-war era has been, with largely U.S.-led dominance and world politics, it is light-years better than what would have emerged from a victory by the Axis powers. Sure, the Allies were not always morally perfect in the decisions they made in fighting the war. No question about it. But to say the conflict was not basically against an evil form of tyranny as implemented by Japan and Nazi Germany is simply refusing to take a moral stand on your part.

  • 2

    Christopher Blackwell

    I wonder how close to the truth is our own American view of world War II? I think you will find more myth than truth in any nation's view of a war that they were in. Official history taught in schools of any nation is basically propaganda the justify where the nation is now. The United States fought in a bit more than half of world War II, and we fought in one year of World War One a four year war. Most military people would say in each case it took nearly a year to build up our forces and get them enough experience to know what they were doing. As for any war crimes committed by US forces, it is that we don't mention them rather than they did not happen, for there are war crimes in all wars by all nations. In war there are no good guys, only bad guys and worse.

  • -2

    YuriOtani

    herefornow, the Japanese DOW was suppose to be delivered before the attack. The Admiral was told they would be at war before the attack. The Admiral wanted to surprise the Americans to get the most damage and least causalities. Tokyo was to blame as always... herefornow, no country tells the other about their attack plans and I mean NOBODY! The navy was told the DOW was delivered. Give blame where blame is due. As for being a war criminal, there were so many rotten Army solders but remember not all of them were rotten. Many people in this forum blame ALL Japanese and some non Japanese for the war including infants. After the war many Japanese hung for their crimes. Why can you not drop it?

  • 0

    Nicky Washida

    To be fair to the vast majority of Japanese (people like Yuri obviously excluded) they dont speak any other language but Japanese, their information has been presented to them in Japanese on the approval of the Japanese government. I dont know of any well-known history textbooks written by a foreign author and then translated into Japanese, and certainly not any widely available in Japan, if the translation is even accurate.

    My point is that although I agree that for many Japanese their view of what really happened is blatently skewed, it is not really their fault, and so to condemn them for their ignorance of the facts of what really happened isnt really very fair IMHO.

    I have never seen a school history textbook (my kids arent old enough yet to be touching on that subject) but my husband tells me that from his point of view they dont avoid dealing with the issue or "hide" the true facts as some claim, they simply just dont go down to that level of detail. When you consider the amount of facts that need to be learned about history, this doesnt seem that unreasonable to me.

    I am all for the truth coming out, and my husband says since he learned English he has been constantly surprised and grateful for the new perspectives on things that he has learned. But I do stop short of criticising an entire nation for their inability to acknowledge certain truths because I cant help but feel for 99% of people here it is not really their fault. If anything, I blame those in power for refusing to allow the masses to become properly informed.

    I am not a Japanophile at all, nor am I a bitter twisted gaijin - I can just see two sides to this issue.

  • -1

    It"S ME

    Nicky.

    You are right here to a degree, most countries will educate their citizens in the history they prefer to be known.

    Said that those overseas translated books are out there as well as any interested japanese citizen can walk into a public library, museum, etc and access records. So I think the fault might lie in the lack of promoting the desired to study History from various view-points. Lets face WHO really likes History = boring subject at school and mostly about remembering dates, etc.

    Some of my US-friends were rather shocked when they accessed official records in my country about WW II and their image of what they thought actually happened was shattered.

  • -1

    YuriOtani

    Nicky Washida, you make too many assumptions. Just because I do not view the attack on Pearl Harbor as a war crime does not mean, I approved of the war. Second, I am not a Japanese person. I grew up on occupied Okinawa. Admiral Yamamoto had his duty to perform, like so many Japanese it never occurred to him not to do it. Again Americans were so angry because of the many American failures. They did not want to blame their troops so their racism caused them to blame Japan. Remember the Americans had cracked Japans diplomatic code. They knew Japan was about to attack but not where. They intercepted a message instructing the Embassy to destroy the cyber machines after decoding the last message. After saying that, so much of what the Japanese sailors did was inexcusable. I make no excuses for the pacific war but militarism, paranoia and greed.

  • -2

    GW

    As for any war crimes committed by US forces, it is that we don't mention them rather than they did not happen, for there are war crimes in all wars by all nations. In war there are no good guys, only bad guys and worse.

    CBlackwell,

    This line of thought is often trotted out & its true to an entent, war clearly isnt nice, but when comparing the allies to Germany, Japan, Italy & what was happening thats a pretty damned good case fo GOOD vs EVIL if ever there was one.

    Just answer this do you think the world would have been a better place if Germany,Japan,Italy had won WWII. Clearly the answer is a GIANT NO, that would have absolutely hellish, pretty simple this one!

  • -2

    GW

    Nicky,

    I agree the J-population is at a disadvantage due to language & their lieing govts over the decades, but really the history books here just whitewash the war, the scale & the brutality that Japan rained in the region is descibed as " happenings" or " incidents", so the locals dont really have an idea of the scale of what Japan did.

    This imo is done ON PURPOSE by the govts since the end of WWII to present, bottom line is its blatant dumbing down of what happened & this has & continues to cause many problems for Japan out there in the world & its not going away & now Japan is fading so other countries are less lilely to just let it slide anymore.

  • -3

    Nicky Washida

    @Yuri

    And you are completely making things up!

    Just because I do not view the attack on Pearl Harbor as a war crime does not mean, I approved of the war.

    Where did I ever say you or anyone else approved of the war??!

    Second, I am not a Japanese person. I grew up on occupied Okinawa.

    I was not referring to your ethnicity or nationality but your language. Correct me if I am wrong but your first language is Japanese, is it not? And I was actually complimenting you on your English. Forgive me if that was insulting to you.

    Admiral Yamamoto had his duty to perform, like so many Japanese it never occurred to him not to do it. Again Americans were so angry because of the many American failures. They did not want to blame their troops so their racism caused them to blame Japan. Remember the Americans had cracked Japans diplomatic code. They knew Japan was about to attack but not where. They intercepted a message instructing the Embassy to destroy the cyber machines after decoding the last message. After saying that, so much of what the Japanese sailors did was inexcusable. I make no excuses for the pacific war but militarism, paranoia and greed.

    Huh? Is this also directed at me or is it a general statement? Because I never made any claims to any facts about the war, and in particualr Admiral Yamamoto who I know very little about.

  • -2

    Nicky Washida

    @GW you may well be right, I have never seen a school history textbook to know, and even if I did, I probably couldnt read much of it! I am just reporting what my husband told me, and given that as I said there are so many facts to know it makes sense to me that they dont go to the nth level of detail. Whether this is whitewashing or not I dont honestly know, just offering up a different perspective on it, thats all.

  • 0

    just-a-guy

    Admiral Yamamoto was a very special commander of all WW2 generals/Admirals. He was both admirable and despicable! He was admirable because his visions was clear, he knows the consequences of japan joined the axis, waging war at China and the attacks over pearl harbour, he knows the Japanese government was under control by army thugs like Hideki Tojo and those who were responsible for 'coups' and assassination of civilian officials back in japan 1930s! But so unfortunately he refused to take actions over these 'ridiculous things' he just know-towing those foolish demands from the Japanese army high command which were a bunch of criminals with shear madness! It was so regrettable Yamamoto did not take actions to stop war, his gamble of Pearl harbour attacks made 'Rossevelt' with great laughs! By the way, the greatest winner of Japanese war in asia not just US but also the soviet union;Josef Stalin! The USSR bought time to defeat the nazis and turn around to take over manchuria 1945. Josef Stalin has nothing to deal with Japan back in 1941 for a peace treaty but faking 'his respect' over Japanese power in asia to ink a peace treaty, Stalin revenged and took over Kurile islands..........

  • 3

    amerijap

    A spokesman for production company Toei said the film portrays Yamamoto as a man torn between war and Japan’s future. The spokesman said the film shows Yamamoto as an individual who had a global perspective, looked forward decisively and displayed real leadership.

    Um, who are screenwriter and producer?

    Anyway, I personally don’t think Toei intends to play down the stigma of Japan’s imperial army over Pearl Habor, per se. The Admiral Yamamoto, despite his chief role in directing the attack, is portrayed as a lesser evil in most American films, unlike Hideki Tojo and his brainwashed soldiers. "Tora! Tora! Tora!" is a pretty good example.

  • 4

    Blair Herron

    Nicky, I don't know which historical event on Japanese school textbooks you are talking about, but just for your information, Japanese students learn Japanese history starting Jomon-jidai (13,000years ago) up to today (usually taking 1 year on Japanese history class). The contents are quite plain. Those controversial events like Nanking is written almost all Japanese middle/high school textbooks. I have a high school textbook right here and it says, “南京事件:日本軍は市内外で略奪・暴行を繰り返したうえ、多数の中国人一般住民(婦女子をふくむ)および捕虜を殺害した。・・・”(not much in detail. 13 lines, no pictures). About Atomic-bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, not much in detail, either, 4 lines with two pictures. All events are written quite briefly. It all depends on the teachers how much time they spend on certain events. Cram school type of schools teach kids to memorize everything, 日教組 type of schools teach differently.

  • 0

    yasukuni

    @Yuri Otani People are not blaming all Japanese for WW2 or atrocities. There is no need to "just drop" the study or discussion of history. Nobody is asking the Japanese govt or citizens to "just drop" any discussion of their suffering either.

    There doesn't need to be all this ridiculous fighting about this now. There's nothing wrong with Japanese making a movie about the suffering of their people in Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Okinawa or Tokyo. And neither is there anything wrong with Chinese making a movie about Nanking. Or Jews/Germans or whoever making a movie about the Holocaust. etc etc. In fact, it's good. Lest we forget.

    Almost every Hollywood movie about WW2 portrays Allies as good guys fighting the "good war". And the truth is they were no better or worse than their enemy.

    No better or worse? How can you make a statement like that. Totally absurd.
    Go study up on the Holocaust, see the movie about Nanking, study some history about other atrocities by Japanese in China, the Philippines, etc etc.

    It's simple. Nobody is blaming Japanese for things after WW2 and everyone I know realizes that they are now a peaceful nation who aren't interested in war. All Japanese need to do is be big enough to simply admit that their country caused terrible suffering 70 years ago. Just grow up.

    >

  • -1

    DutchHusband

    I thought it were a ramen ad. LOL navy ramen must be good. better do ramen wars.

  • -4

    lrodriguezsosa

    I was ready to have an open mind about this, until I read this line "opposed to war with the U.S. and attacked Pearl Harbor to end the Pacific War as quickly as possible." So, because he was opposed to a war with the US (which he was about to start), he wanted to beat them as soon as possible. That was very considerate of him.

    Roosevelt blew up almost 70 japanese cities with the same poupose. Very considerate of him.

  • -1

    Zach Odle

    right japan is the victim one must ask who attack who first and then you see who the real victim is

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