15/August/2023 in Krakow
Today is 15th August
The day that ended the World War 2
Officially, or internationally, 2nd September 1945 was considered as the final day of the WW2
But in Japan, 15th August 1945 was the day
In any way, I never participated in the WW2
Not to mention, I never experienced the WW2 myself
But I always have a strong impression.......almost an "emotional" conviction.......that
everything of the WW2 was happening during summer
Not winter, spring, autumn, but only summer
Probably the reason is
important memorial events in Japan related to the WW2 were all in August
―6th Aug: Hiroshima atomic bombing
―9th Aug: Nagasaki atomic bombing
―15th Aug: Japan's surrender was announced to the public
Every year, there is a live broadcast on the ceremony events from Hiroshima, from Nagasaki & from Tokyo (15th/Aug)
And August is the summer holiday for students, so in my childhood, I watched these ceremonies on TV
It was not "conscious" watching
In the living room, TV was always on, and it's usually morning, 8-9am
While eating breakfast, being half-asleep, I was seeing these live broadcasts every year
Probably this is the reason why I feel the WW2 was an event in summer
And I'm almost sure that most of the Japanese share this sentiment
I'm almost sure that memories or impressions of the WW2 among the Japanese are somewhat closely related to summer
"Japan" and "being Japanese"
Apparently I'm far more conscious of these abstract concepts than the other average Japanese person living in Japan
Outside your home country, "How your country is seen" directly affects "How you, as an individual, are seen & treated"
This is particularly true in countries where not many Japanese exists, like Poland
I'm always seen & treated as a Japanese
These daily treatments from them are, for me, a constant reminder that "I'm from Japan" and "I'm Japanese"
They never had a direct contact with "a real Japanese person" but only with "images around Japan/Japanese"
This inevitably makes me think;
How is Japan viewed?
Where do these images about Japan come from?
What has Japan been doing internationally?
And why has Japan become like this now?
And often these quests reach 1945
It was when the Empire of Japan's territorial ambitions & invasions to other Asian countries crushed and failed
And it had to start from scratch as a "new country", called just "Japan"
And, as a Japanese who was born & has been existing after 15th August 1945, my entire life has been based on this new foundation
Most of things I have now in this foreign land
Most of benefits I can receive now in this foreign land
Most of disadvantages I have to accept now in this foreign land
are often, directly or indirectly, connected to what Japan & its people have been doing after this day, 15th August 1945
Over the past decades, Japan's history of the WW2 and the post-war period (1945 - 2023) always attract my attention & makes me think
I haven't yet found any specific answers
I haven't yet got any concrete views
And I still don't know......and perhaps will never know......
how to see the WW2,
how to see 15th August 1945,
how to see its negative and positive consequences,
& what contributions I can make for it as a Japanese who is abroad