On December 13th, 1937 Japanese forces began their assault on Nanjing, former capital of the Republic of China. Over a six week period, 250,000 to 300,000 civilians and disarmed soldiers were killed. Japanese forces also engaged in widespread, systematic rape of Chinese women and girls.
In a keynote speech at the rally, Yang Weize, secretary of the Nanjing Municipal Committee of the Communist Party of China, said, “It (the Nanjing Massacre) is the darkest part in modern civilization for human beings.”
“As we review history and mourn the dead,” Yang said, “we engrave the lesson in our minds ‘falling behind will suffer beating, only development can make us strong.'”
Soldiers present wreaths during a memorial ceremony at the Memorial Hall of the Victims in Nanjing Massacre by Japanese Invaders in Nanjing, capital of east China’s Jiangsu Province, Dec. 13, 2012, to mark the 75th anniversary of the Nanjing Massacre. (Xinhua/Shen Peng)
Representatives of Chinese and Japanese religious circles toll the bell of peace during a memorial ceremony at the Memorial Hall of the Victims in Nanjing Massacre. (Xinhua/Shen Peng)
Doves as a symbol of peace are released during a memorial ceremony at the Memorial Hall of the Victims in Nanjing Massacre. (Xinhua/Shen Peng)
Those interested in learning more about the massacre should seek out a copy of Nanjing! Nanjing! (City of Life and Death), by far the best film on the subject by one of China’s greatest contemporary directors.
[Video via: Beijing Cream]