His Excellency Shinzo ABE
Prime Minister of Japan
The Hague, 9 August 2016
Subject: We Remember
In World War Two Japan wasted Japanese Blood and Treasure. The damage done to the victims of the occupied territories by Japan however were a multiple of that waste. Present Japanese politicians and the Japanese people they represent hardly know the facts and the damage done in their heredity. The damage is not only material. It continues to have an immaterial effect on the global perception of Japan’s moral responsibility. Next Monday the surviving Dutch from Dutch East Indies remember the Japanese occupation. They were an integrated part of the community which the Dutch built together with the local people. It was a prosperous country recovering from the Great Depressing. The Japanese occupation destroyed the recovery and destroyed the future of the Dutch kept in concentration camps or ostracized outside camps on discriminatory grounds. On the 15th of August we do not celebrate Japan’s capitulation but we remember our lost ones and the pain we had to endure under the terror of the Japanese military. Japan’s surrender was for us not liberation but a continuation of terror with the ultimate result that we had to take refuge and lost everything.
In my previous petition I mentioned that the Japanese government is ignoring the elderly, often victims of war, and the young people who want to survive in the changing world. You announced a new economic stimulus package to kick start Japan’s future economy. In this package you must look after them and include an educational plan which objectively addresses Japan’s recent military history during World War Two. It must include Japan’s acknowledgement of its moral duty to war victims both at home and in the occupied territories too. As mentioned previously: “The dissatisfaction with political responses to economic and social problems seems to be spreading.” This dissatisfaction requires action from present politicians to rectify their failure to recognize the urgent needs of their voters and to acknowledge that past views are nowadays unacceptable as they continue to haunt Japan’s reliability in the world.
In my previous petition I suggested: “Be honest and act with dignity and genuine honor towards all war victims.” I hope for the Japanese people and the world that in your new economic stimulus package you take the suggestion at heart.
We are still looking forward to your acknowledgement of receipt of our petitions.
On behalf of the Foundation of Japanese Honorary Debts.
J.F. van Wagtendonk