• Sun
  • Dec 21, 2014
  • Updated: 3:17pm

Japan's second world war defeat was not just due to the atomic bomb, says China

Chinese Ambassador Cui Tiankai tells forum of 'dangerous' view by Japanese politicians

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 09 October, 2013, 8:50am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 09 October, 2013, 3:09pm

Japan should realise it was defeated in 1945 “not just” by atomic bombs and thus not challenge the post-second world war order, China’s ambassador to Washington said on Tuesday.

Amid high tensions between China and Japan, Ambassador Cui Tiankai said that such historical perceptions “may be the most important issue” between Asia’s two largest economies.

Cui, addressing a forum, criticised as “very wrong and dangerous” a view by “a few politicians” in Japan that their country was forced to surrender in 1945 solely because of the nuclear attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

“They believe that if you don’t antagonise the United States, everything would be okay for them, they don’t have to take care of the concerns of other countries,” he said at Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies.

“Japan was defeated in the second world war not just by two atomic bombs dropped by the US but by all the peace-loving, anti-fascist countries and people - the peoples of the United Nations - including China and the United States, of course,” Cui said.

“I think politicians in Japan have to realise this is the post-second world war international order. You cannot challenge that,” he said.

Historical issues remain a major sore spot in East Asia, with many Chinese and Koreans accusing Japan of insufficient remorse for its past expansionism in other Asian nations.

Japan has apologised for causing “tremendous damage and suffering” in the 20th century, leading some officials in Tokyo to accuse Beijing and Seoul of intentionally keeping tensions on a simmer.

Japan, officially pacifist since the war, has been seeking a permanent seat on the UN Security Council, whose makeup reflects power dynamics in 1945. China, now the only Asian nation with veto power, has adamantly opposed Japan’s bid.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who is known for his conservative views on history, has vowed not to cede any sovereignty over islands in the East China Sea claimed by Beijing.

Japan reverently observes the anniversaries of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, which together killed more than 200,000 people. In May, Japan lodged a protest when a South Korean newspaper called the world’s only atomic bombings “divine punishment”.


For unlimited access to:

SCMP.com SCMP Tablet Edition SCMP Mobile Edition 10-year news archive



This article is now closed to comments

I certainly don’t condone of Japan’s war crimes during WW2. But they’ve come a long way since then. While I understand why China hold a grudge against them, it just seems childish to keep bringing up WW2 every time Japan tries to do anything in the international community.
China, is in my opinion, a terrorist state that aids other terrorist states like North Korea, Pakistan, etc. They are cheats and liars that counterfeit everything they can. They are a dangerous military power that wants to dominate the world. China ought to be put in her place, decisively and immediately. I am completely with Japan.
No dispute on what Imperial Japan has done. But Japan doesn’t need to be needlessly reminded of it every time they’re in the same room as China. Here’s how I see the situation:
Japan: “Hey UN, is it alright if we could please have a seat on the Security Council?”
China: “No way! Remember what happened in WW2?!”
Japan: “Yes, of course. But it was almost 70 years ago. We’ve demilitarized and have been a peaceful nation since then. And we’ve made significant contributions to the world.”
China: “Whatever! You committed war crimes!”
Japan: “Yes, everyone knows. It’s all in the history books. What’s your point?”
China: “Our point is you don’t get anything because of what you’ve done. Oh, and by the way, we could have defeated you during the war. We were just feinting when we were occupied by you. We were going to strike back but it just so happened that the US intervened.”
Japan: "Fine, can I get a glass of water? It's a bit dry here with the air conditioning."
China: "No way! Remember WW2?!"
Japan: <rolls eyes> "Seriously?"
Japan was literally defeated in terms of war and the question was only how many deaths will the war ministry and the Tenno still cause by not officially ending the war. Yes, the order was given by the Tenno to fight until the last man, woman and child. The atomic bomb was dropped to end their madness. Not the war. The war was already over. Without the atomic bombs the Japanese would have suffer even more civilian losses and of course many US soldiers would have died in the invasion of Japan. It was the hope of the Tenno that the Americans would fear the high casualties when invading Japan, knowing that whole Japan, even children will defend their home, but never would have thought, that the USA have a weapon to eradicate them without a single US Soldier stepping a foot on the Japan Island. At this point the Tenno feared for his own live and ended officially the war by surrender in person. The war was over, not their madness until dropping of the bombs.
After Japans defeat by the USA in WW2, the country became a pacifist state. Supporting UN humanitarian missions have been the role of the Japanese Self Defense Force. Now China, with its new found economic power, wants to become a military power as well. Similar to Japan before WW2, China, now looking for energy sources, claims most of the South China Sea, even territories of other nations like the Philippines, Taiwan, Vietnam and Japan. China will bring about a resurgence in the Japanese Bushido spirit. Blame China if once again Japan rises as a military nation.
I thought the Chinese all by themselves defeated Japan, by spitting and throwing stinky tofu at them? Not?
Harold Cameron
Until the attrocities at Hiroshima & Nagasaki the Japanese military had been ordered to fight to the last man standing. It was only the realisation that hundreds of thousands of their own population could be killed by weapons which they couldn't retaliate against which led to a change of mind & unconditional surrender, so YES, it was the dropping of two atomic bombs which led to the defeat of Japan in 1945, & anyone who says otherwise is living in cloud cuckoo land.
since when the chinese wants to dominate the world? which state has china terrorized? keep ur **** opinions to urself u white ****!!!!
Small they may be, but Japan defeated Russia in "the first great war of the 20th century." The world ignores Japan it its own peril.
I love the Japanese people, but China is not 'childish' in reminding Japan of it's role in the most momentous, and horrific event that ever occurred. And for reminding them of their utter and inevitable defeat. More people have lived through WWII and it's aftermath than have lived and died since the beginning of humankind's earliest birth. And we hope it remains like that.



SCMP.com Account