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Controversial History Text Books Approved

Date Posted: 2001-04-06

The Ministry of Education disclosed on Tuesday the approval of elementary and junior high school textbooks for the next school year. The most controversial subject was the history text for junior high schools. Many publishing companies raised the ire of the public, especially in Okinawa, as they had simplified the text dealing Japan’s role in the WWII and did not mention Japan as the aggressor in the war. In one version of the book the text for the war in Okinawa had been reduced to one third of the current textbook.

The book, made by Fusousha publishing company refers to the war in Okinawa and stating that “In Okinawa, even the girls of Himeyuri Nurse Corps fought bravely.” The alumni of Himeyuri units voiced a vehement opposition to the use of the word bravely.

A teacher at Kadena High School said, “The importance of Okinawan war is that much more civilian residents were sacrificed than soldiers during the horrible land war that raged on the island. Those texts reflect the theories of the military and the nation.”

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