Today is V.J. Day. That is, the anniversary of the day we were victorious over the Empire of Japan in World War II. General MacArthur forced the humiliation of the Emperor by making him come onto the USS Arizona, in Osaka Harbor, and personally sign the surrender papers. It would only take an additional eight years of occupation by U.S. military forces before bombings, sniping, and the murder of American Troops on Japanese soil would end.
According to most analyses, dropping the atomic bomb on Nagasaki saved the lives of about one million U.S. Marines. That was 65 years ago. Now a group of wealthy retired marines have quietly purchased ground near the center of the city of Nagasaki. The City has just given them permission to erect a memorial to the U.S. Marine Corps.
After a heated debate, the city planners ruled that the memorial was in compliance with the local regulations. Since the memorial is being built on privately owned ground, so long as the owners built in compliance with the building regulations, it was fine.
The investors who purchased the ground have repeatedly explained that they share the Japanese regret for the loss of civilian lives caused by the bomb. In such a great struggle, it is inevitable that innocent people will tragically lose their lives. Moreover, this memorial isn't about the tragic circumstances of the atomic bomb, dropped by the Army Air Corp, but rather is an outreach by the U.S. Marines who honorably engaged the Bushido guided Japanese warriors in a great and honorable struggle that resulted in a lasting peace and understanding.
The people of Japan are quite upset about this memorial. A recent survey shows that approximately 67 percent (+/-3 percent) of Japanese citizens disapprove of the memorial. That they consider the center of Nagasaki ground that has been consecrated by the lives of 80,000 dead. That if the investors wanted to erect a memorial, that they should do it on private ground elsewhere.
When discussing the proposed mosque at the site of the destruction of the World Trade Center, my beloved wife said, "There are a lot of things that we have the right to do. But common sense and civility tell us not to do it."
An interesting point. Legally, there is absolutely noting wrong with building that mosque. It would be a great showing of tolerance by the people of New York and the rest of the U.S. After all, didn't Jesus tell us that when we are slapped in the face, we are to turn to our assailant the other cheek?
But what does that say about the people who would build their mosque there? Those who would build that mosque want to call it "The Cordoba Center." Naming the mosque for the sight of their great conquest in the capture of Spain and the seat of Muslim rule in the Iberian Peninsula. The Caliphate of Cordoba ruled the Iberian Peninsula and North Africa for 100 years. New York City is the economic capital of the United States, and arguably, the world.
What does this say about those who would build their mosque there? Legally, there is absolutely nothing wrong with it.