December 10, 2011 by staff
Japan POW, A Canadian who was imprisoned by Japanese forces during the Second World War said it’s the Japanese people themselves who benefit most from the apology that came Thursday for the brutal treatment of Canadian prisoners during the war.
“The apology is of little value to us,” said Toronto’s George MacDonell, an 89-year-old veteran who chronicled some of his experiences in his book, One Soldier’s Story. “Almost all the Canadian veterans of (the Battle of) Hong Kong either died in the camps, on the battlefield or have died since.
“But the real good news about this is that this apology may signal that the Japanese people are finally going to admit, instead of denying, their behaviour in Southeast Asia during World War Two.”
He added: “I don’t think any culture can ever be healthy if it denies whole, major parts of its existence.”
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