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Regarding Richard DiPeppe’s Aug. 15 letter, “No limit to apologies“: The need for apologies varies according to the case. Britain is quite rightly still waiting for an apology from France for the War of the Spanish Succession, and the United States should apologize for its abortive invasion of Canada in 1812.

However, to blame China for the attempted 13th-century invasions of Japan is a gross slander of the Chinese people. The Chinese, in fact, ensured the defeat of the Mongol fleets that set sail for Japan by sabotaging them. Research done by Japanese scientists on the remains of the Mongol ships in Hakata Bay shows that some of them were in fact shallow-draft river craft that nobody in his right mind, other than the land-based Mongols of the time, would ever go to sea in. Others had masts and rigging that were made deliberately unstable.

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