History of the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands Dispute: During the past half year a territorial dispute between Japan and China over a small group of uninhabited islands (called Diaoyu Islands by the Chinese and Senkaku Islands by the Japanese) in the East China Sea has increased significantly in intensity so that both sides have sent military ships and planes to that area. The confrontations so far have resulted in only warnings, water canon fights, and some damaged Chinese fisherman boats (rammed by Japanese military ships), but it could very well escalate to a serious, major armed conflict between the two countries. From the China side, both the Republic of China (ROC) and People’s Republic of China (PRC) have been involved. Although the U.S. government has stated that it doesn’t take a position regarding the territorial sovereignty of these islands, it has repeatedly stated that these islands are covered under the Japan-U.S. Mutual Defense Treaty. This article discusses that this issue could have great significance for the American people and urges the American people to pay more attention to this issue.
The Japanese government claims that there is no dispute on the sovereignty of these islands, and that they belong to Japan when they first discovered these islands in 1884. However, there are many records that show that these islands have been part of China for more than 600 years since the Ming Dynasty, that Chinese fishermen on and off have been using these islands as temporary shelters, and many international maps (including Japanese maps) over the last few centuries have listed these islands as part of China. Based on analysis of official Japanese government documents (by both Chinese and Japanese scholars), Japan actually tried to secretly steal these islands from China in the late 1880s and early 1890s. When Japan defeated China after the First Sino-Japanese War of 1894-1895, these islands came under the control of Japan. When WWII ended, according to the 1943 Cairo Declaration, the 1945 Potsdam Declaration, and the 1945 Japanese Instrument of Surrender, the Diaoyu Islands should have been returned to China, just like Taiwan and other territories that Japan had stolen from China. It is important to note that the principal author of all these three documents was the U.S.
Why then is there a dispute and what role has the U.S. played? To understand this, we have to go back to 1949 when the Chinese Communist Party won the civil war with the Chinese Kuomintang Party and established the People’s Republic of China. Ever since, the U.S. has adopted a policy to contain and weaken China. That is why when the U.S. organized the 1951 Treaty of Peace with Japan (also called the San Francisco Peace Treaty), China as the country that suffered the most under Japan’s military during WWII, was not even invited to the conference, although over 50 other countries were invited. Where was fairness and social justice when this treaty was supposed to officially end WWII, to formally end Japan’s position as an imperial power, and to allocate compensation to Allied civilians and former POWs who had suffered Japanese war crimes? Who were representing or speaking for the Chinese? This is also why when the U.S. as the sole administrator under the U.N. of the Ryukyu Islands made the unilateral decision on December 25, 1953 to extend the territory of the Ryukyu Islands to include the Diaoyu Islands, which in 1972 the administrative rights of the Ryukyu Islands were handed over to Japan. This complicity by the U.S. helped to create a dispute which should not have existed in the first place.
For a more detailed description of this part of history, please read the article “Inconsistent Foreign Policy May Drag U.S. Into Another War”: http://www.dontow.com/2012/09/inconsistent-foreign-policy-may-drag-u-s-into-another-war/.
Japan’s Revision of History: One of the most serious travesties in modern history is the Japanese government’s unwillingness to acknowledge and apologize for the massive and inhumane atrocities that the Japanese Imperial Army inflicted on many countries in Asia during WWII. These atrocities included over 200,000 sex slaves, 300,000 Chinese (including civilians, women, and children) massacred during the approximate six-week period of the Nanking Massacre, and numerous applications of biological and chemical weapons of mass destruction in more than a dozen provinces in China killing hundreds of thousands of Chinese and permanently maiming many more. On the contrary, their government leaders, including their prime ministers, have made remarks such as: “there was no coercion of women into sexual slavery during WWII, and there is no testimony from anyone in Japan,” “the Nanking Massacre is a story made up by the Chinese,” and “there was no Nanking Massacre, only the results of conventional acts of combat.”
All of these are lies, as these atrocities were well documented by many eye witnesses, including western journalists, businessmen, diplomats, missionaries, educators, and other international observers. Furthermore, the Japanese teacher and journalist Tamaki Matsuoka has video interviews of over 250 former Japanese soldiers confirming the Nanking Massacre. In addition, starting in the early 1980s, the Japanese government has rewritten their textbooks so that already there are generations of Japanese who do not know about this part of WWII history.
Adding insult to injury, top Japanese leaders regularly paid tribute at the Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo where 14 convicted and executed Class A war criminals are enshrined. Can you imagine what would be the world’s reaction if German chancellors pay tribute at a memorial for Hitler? Recall the U.S.’s critical reaction when the Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on his visit to the U.S. in 2007 denied the existence of the Holocaust. Why were there no massive outcries from the U.S. government or mass media on Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s recent visit to the U.S. to meet with President Obama when Abe is one of the chief Japanese revisionists of WWII history?
U.S. Complicity and Significance for the American People: Being supposedly the benevolent overseer of Japan post WWII, if the U.S. had insisted on Japan acknowledging and apologizing for its WWII war crimes, I am sure that it would have been done. As a matter of fact, why the U.S. did not prosecute Emperor Hirohito when he was fully aware and approved of the policies implemented by Japan during WWII?  Perhaps the reason was to make it easier to administer Japan along the policies of the U.S. if Japan’s Emperor was seemingly on the U.S.’s side. If the Allies did not prosecute Emperor Hirohito as a war criminal, then the Japanese can infer that he was innocent of any war crime, and since Japan as a nation was centered on the emperor, Japan also must be free of war crime. Why none of the top leaders of Japan’s infamous Unit 731, the largest biological and chemical weapon laboratory/factory in the history of mankind, was prosecuted? According to the American doctor and medical historian Dr. Martin Furmanski, who researched this issue, wrote “In a disgraceful agreement with the Japanese biological weapons war criminals, the U.S. offered immunity from war crimes prosecution in exchange for the scientific data the Japanese had collected from murdering Chinese citizens, as well as citizens of other countries, both in their laboratories and in field applications. The official U.S. and Japanese policy became one of denying the existence of the Japanese biological weapons program.” 
Thus one can conclude that since 1949, one of the principal policies of American foreign policy was to contain and weaken China, and to achieve this objective the U.S. on several occasions has been involved in complicity with Japan as its leading junior partner. That is why today, U.S. has military bases and military alliances with many countries all around China. That is why the U.S. is adopting the ambiguous and inconsistent policy of claiming to be neutral on the territorial sovereignty of the Diaoyu Islands, but also including these islands under the Japan-U.S. Mutual Defense Treaty. If the territorial sovereignty of the islands is not settled, then why should they be included in the Japan-U.S. Mutual Defense Treaty? As stated earlier, this dispute is heating up rapidly and could result in a major war between China and Japan. Do the American people want our country to be dragged by Japan into a war in the East China Sea that has no moral or legal reasons to be involved? Do we, the American people, stand by while our sons and daughters fight in an unjustified war far away from home? Do we want to blindly support a country that launched a devastating surprise attack on Pearl Harbor and inflicted massive, inhumane atrocities all over Asia, and still has not acknowledged and apologized for those deeds?
The American people must see through the complicity that our government is getting our country tangled in. The American people must ask where is our social justice and where is our high moral ground? The American people must demand that the policy that our government implements must be in the best interests of our country and our people. The American people must ask is our current policy of supporting Japanese military the best use of our hard-earned tax dollars? The American people must realize that a revival of Japanese militarism may create a monster that could strike the U.S. again, as it once did with Pearl Harbor and the Bataan Death March.
It is true that China has become the U.S.’s major competitor. Let the two countries compete on level grounds. Instead of accusing China of monetary manipulation, look at ourselves of constantly printing money and thus devaluing the debt that we owe. Instead of accusing China of adopting an aggressive foreign policy, look at ourselves of setting up military bases and military alliances all around China, and our defense budget for 2011 was more than the next 13 highest defense budgets combined.  Instead of always accusing China of not presenting the truths, look at the half-truths and distortions that our government and mass media spill out on a regular basis regarding China. We are not saying that some of China’s external or internal policies should not be criticized, but the criticisms should be based on facts and fair analysis, but not based on half truths, lies, and distorted analysis.
Cyber Espionage: What about the recent accusation that the Chinese government is responsible for launching cyber espionage activities against the U.S.? First besides the obvious comment that there has been no proof that the attacks came from the Chinese government. The accusers are also fully aware that the responsible party could arrange it so that the attack may appear to come from another party. What is even more important is to ask whether or not the U.S. government and military have been engaged in espionage, including cyber espionage? Isn’t it common knowledge that every large company is engaged in intelligence gathering and competitive analysis of their competitors? Isn’t it common knowledge that every country has always engaged in espionage activities, and not necessarily always legally? For example, according to a 2001 European Parliamentary Session document , the U.S.’ National Security Agency (NSA) routinely conducts cyber-warfare collecting sensitive and private information of various countries’ companies and providing them to their American counterparts, such as hacking into the Japanese Trade Ministry to obtain detailed information on the quotas being discussed for U.S. cars. Furthermore, NSA is almost finished building a new $2 billion mammoth data center (sometimes known as Spy Center) in Utah that will store massive amount of data (government, company, and personal data), as well as developing new and sophisticated code-cracking algorithms. Part of the purpose of this super secret center is to do cyber espionage. 
Conclusion: Although we may prefer otherwise, let’s acknowledge that we now live in a world in which the U.S. could have major competitors. But instead of always trying to contain and weaken China, let’s adopt a win-win-win policy that is good for the U.S., China, and world peace, as well as being fair to the rest of the world. A policy of ignoring Japan’s revision of WWII history and the resurgence of Japanese militarism and adopting an antagonistic and confrontational attitude toward China is not in the best interests of the U.S., the American people, and world peace. The American people must tell our government not to continually feed us a pretext for initiating aggression towards China.
 Hirohito and the Making of Modern Japan by Herbert P. Bix, Harper Perennial, 2001. This book provides evidence that Emperor Hirohito was fully involved in making various major decisions during WWII.
 Dr. Martin Furmanski’s article “An Investigation of the Afflicted Area of Anthrax and Glanders Attacks by Japanese Aggressors” in the book Blood-Weeping Accusations: Records of Anthrax Victims, by Li Xiaofang, 2005.
 Report on the existence of a global system for the interception of private and commercial communications (ECHELON interception system) (2001/2098(INI)): http://cryptome.org/echelon-ep-fin.htm#10.
 “The NSA Is Building the Country’s Biggest Spy Center (Watch What You Say): http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2012/03/ff_nsadatacenter/all/.