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Governor will join in textbook protest

Date Posted: 2007-09-13

A Prefecture-wide protest assembly September 29th will send a strong message to the Ministry of Education citizens are opposed to the directive striking references to soldier-ordered mass suicides during the Battle of Okinawa.

Prefecture Assembly Chairman Toshonobu Nakazato is coordinating the protest movement, which has garnered strong support from virtually all Okinawa municipalities, Prefecture Assembly members, Prefecture City Mayors Association, City Assembly Member’s Association and civic groups.

The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology has ordered textbook publishers to delete from all textbooks references to mass suicides being ordered by Japanese soldiers. The deletions must be accomplished before April 2008. Current textbooks say Japanese soldiers provided hand grenades and ordered Okinawa citizens to commit mass suicide rather than surrender to American soldiers.

Okinawa Governor Hirokazu Nakaima tells protesters “My opinion is the same as yours,” and declared he will attend the rally and “publish my thoughts.” Nakazato’s group has also visited the Prefecture Education Chairman, Shigeru Nakaima, asking he attend the meeting. The organizing group says “we are going to request “all Prefecture-owned school principals attend the meeting, and also that the Prefecture Education Board members and section leaders attend, as well.”

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