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I do not quite understand what is your point, even with the "let me help you" comment below.

Are you suggesting that the article is wrong in stating that the Japanese believed that the Americans would treat them better if they surrendered to them rather than the Russians? If so, perhaps you can provide some authority.




Let's be perfectly clear and honest here. If you say anything about the atrocities committed by any group at any point in history, certain nationalists (Orwell on nationalism: http://www.orwell.ru/library/essays/nationalism/english/e_na...) take it as their sacred duty to defend the reputation of their chosen idol or to tear down the reputations of any other nationality to establish moral superiority, or at least equivalence, for the object of their defense.

Hence, a perfectly sensible remark acknowledging the brutality of all sides in World War II, paired with the observation that the Western Allies at least had a deserved reputation for being countries one was better off surrendering to, opens up an entire chasm of nationalistic anger, first tacitly denying that any such atrocities occurred, even on the part of the Nazis themselves (http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=1609926) followed, through the psychological mechanism of projection, by accusations of attempting to claim a "moral high ground" for the western Allies (http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=1610175), judging as propaganda near-universally-accepted truths about the brutalities of certain regimes (http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=1610199) and ultimately declaring that, whatever the evils of communism and fascism, the evils of the English speaking countries are worse (http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=1611142).

Alternatively, the entire campaign can also be viewed as purely an exercise in negative nationalism, attempting to tear down the reputations of the English speaking countries with the initial, tentative defense of the Nazis and Soviets meant only as an exercise in moral equivalence, rather than a genuine defense of totalitarianism. The psychology is the same.

Either way, there's no real point being made here, just a nationalistic knee-jerk reaction to anyone pointing out unsavory aspects of the history of totalitarianism, or alternatively the "savory" aspects of the history of certain English speaking countries.

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Let me explain:

Do you know how if you read any article on the United States online today, there are people who comment "OMG Obama is causing the downfall of America"? Anytime a political topic comes up on Hacker News, someone will come out and say "OMG totalitarianism is evil." No original thought, and nothing even remotely relevant to the core issues of the topic. These morons are the same, their views come from Fox news or equivalent tripe.

This particular one was really amusing to troll; I enjoyed his Pol Pot Disneyland story. There is nothing cynical or cruel in that remark - I really do believe that (for some reasons why, this is a good place to start: http://web.inter.nl.net/users/Paul.Treanor/forget.html).

"Are you suggesting that the article is wrong in stating that the Japanese believed that the Americans would treat them better if they surrendered to them rather than the Russians?"

This is exactly why these Reagan zombies are so annoying. They've managed to shift the topic of discussion from Japan's plan for a USSR-mediated peace treaty (which is actually the novel point of the article), to "OMG EVIL RUSKIES" idiocy turned "fact" turned bad cliche paid for by the CIA (http://www.amazon.com/Who-Paid-Piper-Cultural-Cold/dp/186207...). Even the topic of American vs Soviet occupation is completely bypassed - right away the discussion shifts to "collectives are evil, and fuck and downmod you if you say different". They're very effective at re-framing the discussion into something superficially similar, but really a completely unrelated, cliched trope where they know the outcome ("BUT THINK OF THE CAMBODIAN BABIES!!!"). What the fuck does Cambodia have to do with this article?

It's pointless to argue with them - the course of discussion has been tread and re-tread for over 65 years thanks to US sponsorship of right-wing think tanks, and the shape and conclusions ("OMG YOU'RE A NATIONALIST, NO WAIT, MORAL RELATIVISM IS WRONG") have already been determined and they know that. The only appropriate response is to troll and enjoy the lulz.

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Right. So, will you actually answer my question?

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"Are you suggesting that the article is wrong in stating that the Japanese believed that the Americans would treat them better if they surrendered to them rather than the Russians?"

The Japanese leadership believed they would be treated better by the Americans, probably correctly. On the other hand the Japanese people were preparing for mass suicide in case of US invasion, believing (probably incorrectly; but to be fair the Marines did manage to kill a quarter of all civilians in Okinawa) that the US soldiers would rape, torture and mutilate them. From what I understand they did not hold similar views about Soviet soldiers.

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