Monday, March 05, 2012

I am happy my father became a slave laborer.

Dear Friends,

For years there has been a contingent of ex-pow's and descendants alike who continually push for repatriations and more in depth apologies from the Japanese for their use of slave labor during the conquest of Asia in WWII. Even after all these years of knowing the mindset of the Japanese toward their opponents who surrendered, these people are in fact, asking for the Japanese to apologize for the instrument of their own survival.

Prisoners of war are a burden. They have no value. They are a drain on resources and manpower, however, slave laborers do have value, therefore a need exists to maintain to a certain degree, a semi-healthy population of free labor to replace the losses of manual labor at home. This makes a prisoner of war an asset and a need arises to maintain them. Can anyone argue that the Japanese went through great lengths and suffered heavy losses in their effort to move prisoners of war to Japan and Manchuria for the purpose providing labor for their war effort?

American prisoners of war suffered the loss of around 3840 of their own on Japanese transports from the Philippines. Around 1445 died in pow camps in Japan and Manchuria. This comes to about 5,285 deaths.  My argument in this post is to provide an alternative view in this quest for an all encompassing apology that will somehow set everything right that has not occurred in 70 years, 25550 days, or 613,200 hours.

The Japanese have not and will not open their WWII records to American investigators because they can only lose by doing so. They have been steadfast in this stance for 70 years and to believe that this will change is ludicrous.
My father survived the war because he had some value to the Japanese and as the future perpetually takes form as I type this post, his progeny continue to live and breathe because he became a slave laborer and did not remain in the wretched and crowded conditions of pow camp in the Philippines and get caught between American and Japanese forces. In the Philippine camps they were valueless. It is my opinion that the majority of  prisoners would have perished in the Philippines and the "Great Raid" would never have occurred.

Robert