In the March 13 letter “Expansionism allied with racism,” Faith Bach refutes my claim that the often-made comparison between German and Japanese World War II aggression has flaws in that the war in Asia was between imperial powers while the war in Europe was between sovereign states.

Bach contends that a pertinent link is that in both Europe and Asia, “the victimized peoples” and “their governments … resisted.”

Japan’s war advance was met with guarded optimism by Asian populations who had long grown tired of a colonialism grounded in the racist creed of “the white man’s burden.” Few Asians felt inclined to defend the prerogatives of white men with their lives.

Resistance toward Japan commenced when it became clear that one imperial master was as bad as another. Following Japan’s defeat in 1945, the resistance was rapidly transferred to the white imperial powers as they brutally attempted to reassert control. Indeed, for much of Asia, the worst was yet to come.

paul de vries
kawaguchi, saitama

The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.

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