Today is the 70th anniversary of the start of the Nanking Massacre which took place in 1937, and more than 8,000 people were gathered today in the Nanking Massacre Museum this morning in a memorial ceremony as you see in this picture from Shanghai Daily.
The number of deaths that resulted in the six weeks of atrocities after the fall of Nanjing continues to be debated. It ranges, according to Wikipedia, from “some Japanese claims of several hundred, to the Chinese claim of a non-combatant death toll of 300,000. A number of Japanese researchers consider 100,000 – 200,000 to be an approximate value. Other nations usually believe the death toll to be between 150,000 – 300,000”. Till today, some Japanese commentators when referring to the event have shunned the use of the term ‘Nanking massacre’ (南京大虐殺,Nankin daigyakusatsu), preferring the more ambivalent term ‘Nanking Incident’ (南京事件,Nankin jiken).
Back to the picture, does anyone apart from us find it odd that Chinese authorities would choose to use the symbol of the cross so prominently in the ceremony?