4 men crit­i­cized for ‘in­sult­ing’ war heroes

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - CHINA - By ZHOU WENTING in Shang­hai zhouwent­ing@chi­nadaily.com.cn

Four men were crit­i­cized on­line af­ter pos­ing for pic­tures dressed in Im­pe­rial Ja­panese Army uni­forms in front of a strong­hold used by Chi­nese sol­diers to re­pel Ja­panese in­vaders dur­ing the Bat­tle of Shang­hai in 1937.

The pho­tos, which show the men stand­ing in front of the his­toric Si­hang Ware­house, be­gan cir­cu­lat­ing late on Mon­day. Many peo­ple com­mented on­line that it was dis­re­spect­ful.

“My grand­fa­ther was one of the sol­diers in that bat­tle and he died,” one in­ter­net user wrote on Sina Weibo. “Those who sac­ri­ficed their lives for the coun­try and the peo­ple should never be for­got­ten or in­sulted, es­pe­cially at the same place where they died.”

A military en­thu­si­ast in Bei­jing, who said he knew the four men from an on­line chat group for fans of military prod­ucts, told China Daily that all of them are univer­sity stu­dents pur­su­ing un­der­grad­u­ate or grad­u­ate stud­ies, and they col­lect Ja­panese military mem­o­ra­bilia.

“Each col­lec­tor of military ar­ti­facts gives dif­fer­ent rea­sons, such as the weapons, the uni­form, the war his­tory or the culture. But col­lec­tors of Ja­panese items are usu­ally very cau­tious,” said the man, who gave only his sur­name, Song.

“For most such col­lec­tors, the in­ten­tion is to re­mem­ber his­tory and make the pub­lic aware of it to alert fu­ture gen­er­a­tions,” he said, ad­ding that the four men came from Bei­jing and Sichuan prov­ince.

Song said peo­ple in the chat group are crit­i­ciz­ing the four for their un­rea­son­able and im­moral ac­tiv­i­ties and en­cour­aged them to make a pub­lic apol­ogy.

The four de­clined to com­ment.

Those who sac­ri­ficed their lives for the coun­try and the peo­ple should never be for­got­ten or in­sulted.” An in­ter­net user

On Satur­day, two Chi­nese tourists, aged 36 and 49, were ar­rested in Berlin and charged with mak­ing Nazi salutes while pos­ing for pic­tures in front of Ger­man par­lia­ment.

Po­lice of­fi­cers pa­trolling nearby ar­rested the two, who were charged un­der the coun­try’s post-1945 laws that pro­hibit hate speech and sym­bols associated with Hitler and his Nazi fol­low­ers.

The Chi­nese em­bassy in Berlin said on Mon­day that each of the two was fined 500 euros ($586) and left Ger­many with­out fur­ther crim­i­nal pun­ish­ment, Xin­hua News Agency re­ported.

He Jian­min, a pro­fes­sor at Shang­hai Univer­sity of Fi­nance and Eco­nom­ics, who spe­cial­izes in tourism man­age­ment, said China should make laws to for­bid be­hav­ior be­tray­ing na­tional dig­nity and pa­tri­o­tism at spe­cial sites.

The State Ad­min­is­tra­tion of Cul­tural Her­itage on July 31 be­gan so­lic­it­ing pub­lic opin­ion on a doc­u­ment re­gard­ing the preser­va­tion and use of cul­tural relics rel­e­vant to the War of Re­sis­tance Against Ja­panese Ag­gres­sion (1931-45).

The doc­u­ment makes it clear that all vis­i­tors to such sites should dress prop­erly and re­main silent.

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