War Criminals of WWII Japan Confess Their Crimes

Of all historic conflicts, WWII may be most associated with war criminals. Vicious wrongdoings were in abundance as the Allies fought tooth and nail to end tyranny worldwide. Many perpetrators of such crimes were put on trial once the war was over, and a number of them provided written statements in which they confessed their crimes. Recently, the statements of war criminals from Japan were released so that the public could read them.

The documents were released by the State Archives Administration of China. They detail all manner of crimes, some of them highly disturbing. For instance, one prisoner confessed to disemboweling Chinese women who were expecting to give birth. This same prisoner confessed to thousands of other murders in total. Such confessions illustrate the Japanese war criminals as vicious killers who were not above any type of slaughter. Some of the killings were experimental in nature, as the soldiers were testing new ways of killing enemy troops and prisoners. Some of the crimes were not killings at all, but rather revolved around using Chinese women as sex slaves.

So far, the bulk of the released confessions come from Lieutenant General KeikuSukuzi. He is one of the more vicious men to have written his confessions, but he was certainly not alone in his crimes. The confessions of many other war criminals are planned for digitized release so that they can be accessed by anyone with a web browsing device and an internet connection. The current plan of the State Archives Administration is to digitize one set of confessions every day until all have been made publicly available, the CCTV.com reports.

The State Archives Administration believes the release of these documents is important, as it reminds people of how easily men can sacrifice their characters when in a period of conflict. The confessions of the Japanese war criminals demonstrate mankind at some of its foulest, most vile moments. China believes that the horror of these documents can help to discourage others from engaging in such behavior in times of war.

The confessions of the war criminals may be difficult for some readers to stomach, but they do provide an invaluable look at the depths of human depravity. It is difficult to say if these actions arose as the result of stress from the war, or if the war simply provided an opportunity for men to fulfill their basest desires. Hopefully, the ongoing digital release of confessions written by war criminals during WWII will provide some answers.

Ian Harvey

Ian Harvey is one of the authors writing for WAR HISTORY ONLINE