‘Nanking’ author’s parents call on Japan to face history
Parents of Chinese- American author Iris Chang ( ) , who was best known for her book on the Nanking Massacre, “The Rape of Nanking,” yesterday called on Japan to face history in order to promote peace.
Speaking with local media in Taipei, Chang Ying- ying (
) and Chang Shau- jin ( ), the mother and father of Chang respectively, urged the Japanese government to sincerely apologize over wartime atrocities during World War II.
Unlike Germany’s admission of its role and its efforts to compensate victims during WWII, Japan has always taken the approach of denial, Chang Yingying said.
“The Japanese government has never sincerely apologized over their war crimes,” she noted.
“Their politicians only issued personal apologies for Japan’s wartime aggression but we are asking for an official apology on behalf of their government,” she noted.
She said people are asking for Japan’s apology so that the country can learn from its past and make sure that Japanese militarism will not rise again.
The ultimate goal is to promote peace, she added.
Chang’s parents, both in their 70s, were born and raised in Taiwan before moving to the U. S.
They are visiting Taiwan to participate in ongoing celebrations to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the R. O. C.’ s victory over Japan in the Second Sino- Japanese War that lasted from 1937 to 1945.
On Tuesday, the two received a citation from President Ma Ying- jeou on their daughter’s behalf whose 1997 book resurrected the long- ignored atrocities by the Japanese military on Chinese civilians during the war.
Chang committed suicide on Nov. 9, 2004. She was 36.
Commenting on her daughter’s book, Chang Ying- ying yesterday said her daughter was motivated partly by her parents’ stories about their escape from the massacre.
To write the book, Chang traveled to China to see photos and documents that recorded atrocities committed by Japanese forces.
Chang Ying- ying said her daughter was deeply affected by these images and she once told her to quit writing the book for her own good.
What she had seen and experienced while writing the book apparently affected her body and soul too much, Chang Ying- ying said.
But her daughter insisted that she had to do so and the suffering she had was nothing compared to the suffering of those innocent men, women and children who were brutally killed by Japanese soldiers.
After her daughter’s passing, she said that she and her husband decided to support Chang’s work and continue her mission so that more will know about the largely forgotten history.
Father of Chinese-American writer Iris Chang ( ), Chang Shau-jin (
), left, and mother Chang Ying-ying ( ), right, speak during a press event in Taipei, yesterday. They are visiting Taiwan to receive a citation from President Ma Ying-jeou on their daughter’s behalf whose book resurrected the long-ignored atrocities by the Japanese military on Chinese civilians during World War II.