Ambassador Kennedy spoke about courage of former POWs

During her recent interview with the Asahi Shimbun, Japan’s second largest newspaper, U.S. Ambassador to Japan Caroline Kennedy said:

I want to take a moment to talk about history and reconciliation. This fall, there was an event that previously might have been thought unimaginable. A group of Americans who suffered as Japanese prisoners of war during the Second World War returned here at the invitation of the Japanese government. Participating took enormous amounts of courage for all those involved.

There are many other examples of ways in which people here worked to build a peaceful future out of a difficult past. It is not easy, but citizens in all countries should encourage and support leaders who reach across history to build a peaceful future. It took courage on the part of the participants to come back to Japan and learn how Japan has changed.

Thank you for your courage!

            Lester Tenney         Joe Alexander            Ed Jackfert          Robert Rosendahl

            Earl Szwabo           Donald  Versaw       Jan Thompson           Nancy Kragh 

 Robert Vogler   Oscar Leonard   Harold Bergbower  Edward Friese   James Collier      Harry Corre        Ralph Griffith

Douglas Northam Randall Edwards   David Farquhar     John Mims          John Real      George  Summers  Robert Ehrhart

Phillip Coon       Robert Heer    Erwin Johnson  Marvin Roslansky  Lora Cummins  Marjean McGrew   Esther Jennings

Ambassador Kennedy went on to say, “But it also took courage on the part of Japan to acknowledge past mistakes and honor the former POWs.”

Japanese Foreign Ministers who showed courage

FM Katsuya Okada          FM Koichiro Genba         FM Fumio Kishida

*  The entire interview article published on January 23, 2014 can be read here.

Reports on  2010 POW visit,  2011 POW visit , 2012 POW visit and 2013 POW visit.