April 16, 2001
The Honorable Nobuaki Tanaka
Mr. Bruce Pickering
Dear Consul-General Tanaka and Mr. Pickering,
As President of Global Alliance for Preserving the History of WW II in Asia, I am writing to request the inclusion of Global Alliance's objectives and guests in the US_Japan 21st Century Project-Education Committee's preparation for commemorative activities of the 50th anniversary of the San Francisco Peace Treaty (hereafter referred to as the Treaty).
The Global Alliance for Preserving the History of WW II in Asia (hereafter referred to as the Global Alliance) is a California_based nonpartisan, nonprofit worldwide confederation of over 40 grassroots organizations. Founded in 1994, its mission is to preserve the history of WW II in Asia in order to promote justice, safeguard humanity and to bring about a genuine reconciliation and lasting friendship among all people of the global village. As such the organization has a stake in events around the world that either contribute to or detract from the accuracy of that history.
The Global Alliance firmly believes that any commemoration of the Treaty should include a balanced presentation of the pros and cons of the Treaty. I note from your website and other relevant materials that your planned educational events all proclaim the positive consequences of the signing of the Treaty without touching on the Treaty's negative impact on Asia and the U.S. Thus these planned events are more in the nature of a "celebration" and leave much to be desired in a true "commemoration" of the Treaty.
Some major aspects we consider conspicuously absent in your planned events are:
In ensuring that the commemoration includes educational activities and media outreach that would encompass minimally the above points, the Global Alliance will invite participants who represent these missing voices to San Francisco on the week of the commemoration. We have learnt of your desire to be inclusive and your wish to bring in diverse groups with different views under your umbrella of commemoration. With Japan's transformation into a democracy after the war and with democratic ideals firmly entrenched in the U.S., we believe it would only be fitting that these different voices be heard at, rather than heard outside of the "commemorative activities" organized by you. Therefore, please be assured of Global Alliance's sincerity to contribute to and be a part of a meaningful and balanced commemoration when we request your inclusion of us as an equal partner in all your commemoration educational activities and events.
I look forward to receiving an affirmative answer from you.
Ivy Lee, Ph.D.
President, The Global Alliance for Preserving the History of WW II in Asia
Professor Emeritus of Sociology, California State University, Sacramento
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