March 18, 2010

Maclean’s Publishes Gross Errors on Korea, Japan

I am shocked at the March 22, 2010, issue of Maclean's. First, it somehow managed to place Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il as dictators of South Korea (p. 9). Hello?

Then, in  a long article called "The Battle for Okinawa" the news magazine managed to turn decades of Japanese imperialistic expansion and military aggression (invasion and occupation of Korea? invasion and occupation of parts of China? Nanking Massacre, Pearl Harbour?) and over five years of WWII into something it called the "1945 Battle of Okinawa, the Americans' 82-day long assault on Japan. . ." Apparently, according to Maclean's, "Japan fell to the Allies in the 1945 Battle of Okinawa." Uh, Hiroshima? Nagasaki? Japan did not surrender until the first, terrible, use the world has ever seen of nuclear weapons.

The errors continue to pile up. How about "Okinawa lost as much as a quarter of its civilian population (estimates vary)-both in battle and through mass suicides, propelled by rumours about the brutality of approaching American soldiers." There is plenty of documentary evidence that the rumours were just that - rumours - and that those rumours were purposely spread by the fanatical Japanese military defenders on Okinawa, who also had no compunction about mass-murdering their own citizens if they preferred to take their chances with the supposedly barbarian Yanks instead of "voluntarily" committing suicide.

Maclean's needs to have a serious meeting of its editorial staff and take a close look at the claptrap it's publishing. It's one thing to perhaps mistype "South" for "North" and have a series of writers, copy editors and editors miss the mistake, but ignoring and rewriting history is extremely worrisome.

Posted by Paul at March 18, 2010 10:06 PM