Marking the darkest day in China's modern history for peace

Li Jiayao
2021-09-18 15:42:01

SHENYANG, Sept. 18 (Xinhua) -- One week after the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, China marked the 90th anniversary of the "September 18 Incident" which dragged China into a 14-year bitter war with Japan's fascist regime.

Back on September 18, 1931, the day seemingly dawned as just another day in Shenyang, the capital city of today's Liaoning Province in northeast China. An incident that night, however, sparked Chinese People's War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression and the World Anti-Fascist War.

Japanese troops attacked Chinese barracks near Shenyang that night, a flagrant breach of the international security order formed after the First World War.

The September 18 Incident was and was not China's "Pearl Harbor" -- while both were surprise attacks by Japanese invaders, Pearl Harbor is far from the continental United States while Shenyang is an inland city of strategic importance in China.

Atrocities committed by the Japanese invaders left unforgettable trauma for Chinese people.

The 1931-1945 Japanese invasion caused more than 35 million casualties among Chinese troops and civilians, accounting for one-third of the WWII casualties worldwide.

During the War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression, China fought with two-thirds of Japan's army, making a major contribution to the allied victory in WWII.

For years, China has kept marking the September 18 Incident.

The war can serve as a mirror. Looking at it helps people to appreciate the value of peace, work hard for national rejuvenation and promote international peace and stability.

Having experienced that kind of darkness, the last thing Chinese people would do is to pass on their suffering to others.

Abiding by the Potsdam Proclamation signed on July 26, 1945, China repatriated more than one million Japanese to their homeland from the port city of Huludao in Liaoning over period of three years beginning in 1946. During the process, still with the fresh memory of inhuman atrocities of Japanese aggressors, the Chinese people exhibited humanitarianism and benevolence to Japanese expatriates and prisoners of war.

Such tragic history must not be repeated. For long-term peace and prosperity, people in the world today have an obligation to boost understanding among nations, spread goodwill, uphold justice and contribute to building a global community with a shared future.

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