Researching Japanese War Crimes Records: Introductory Essays by Edward Drea, Greg Bradsher, Robert Hanyok, James Lide,

By Edward Drea, Greg Bradsher, Robert Hanyok, James Lide, Michael Petersen, Daqing Yang (Contributors)

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S. documents. 36 Chinese scholars studying Japanese war crimes have also begun to explore the collection at NARA. Revelation and Contention What does available documentary evidence reveal about Japan’s war crimes in World War II? How do discoveries of new evidence affect historians’ work? ” Recently, a number of historians have begun to study other criminal activities such as drug trafficking and property theft. Although these categories often overlap, they constitute the bulk of published histories of Japan’s war crimes and each deserves a closer look.

The issue of who should be held responsible for biological warfare also awaits a definitive answer. 85 Japanese scholars such as Tsuneishi have long emphasized the complicity of the entire Japanese medical profession during the war, and criticized its silence after the war, which allowed those involved to assume prominent positions in Japan. Questions also remain about the details of the deal struck between Ishii and the United States after the war. Officially, the Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers (SCAP) thought it lacked definitive evidence to prosecute Ishii and his group at the War Crimes Tribunal.

Some also question the veracity of the testimony provided by former “comfort women” as well as their motivation to testify in public. Hata Ikuhiko, for one, has taken the lead and published many essays as well as a major work on this subject. ” Other Topics In addition to the four main areas of research and publications on Japanese war crimes— conventional war crimes in Asia, mistreatment of Allied POWs and civilians, chemical and biological warfare, and military “comfort women”—other subjects have received some attention in recent years.

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