Yasukuni, it ain't
Wednesday, June 28, 2017 at 3:37PM
Aonghas Crowe in Gokoku Jinja, Pacific War, Shinto shrines, Tani Park, WWII, Walkabout, War, War Memorial, Yasukuni Shrine, 谷公園

During a long run in an unfamiliar corner of town this morning, I came upon a broad set of stone steps, flanked on either side by massive stone lanterns.

Thinking it was the entrance to a shrine, I climbed up the steps. To my surprise, I found a number of monuments dedicated to those who had died in modern Japan's wars and foreign engagements from the overthrow of the shogun and restoration of the Emperor to power, known as the Meiji Restoration (1886), to the Russo-Japan War (1904/5), the Manchurian Incident (1931), and on to the Pacific War which ended 72 years ago this summer. This sombre memorial to Japan's militaristic past is not listed on the map, nor were there any signs outside of the premises indicating what awaited visitors at the top of the stairs.

 

 

 

I will return in the summer during the Bon Festival to see if there are any special ceremonies taking place, like those which occur every year at Gokoku Jinja.

 

For more on "Tani Park", go here.


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