It will always be Iwo Jima
Some news from Japan-
TOKYO - Japan has returned to using the prewar name for the island of Iwo Jima — site of one of World War II's most horrific battles — at the urging of its original inhabitants, who want to reclaim an identity they say has been hijacked by high-profile movies like Clint Eastwood's "Letters from Iwo Jima."Frankly, the renaming of Iwo Jima doesn't surprise me. Japanese leaders have a recent history of turning their backs on what the country did during WWII. Whether its Korean comfort women, or attrocities in China. Japanese forces were cruel to people of lands they conquered during the second world war. My Mother-in-law and many of my wife's older relatives still remember the Japanese occupation of the Philippines.
The new name, Iwo To, was adopted Monday by the Japanese Geographical Survey Institute in consultation with Japan's coast guard.
Surviving islanders evacuated during the war praised the move, but others said it cheapens the memory of a brutal campaign that today is inextricably linked to the words Iwo Jima.
Back in 1945, the small, volcanic island was the vortex of the fierce World War II battle immortalized by the famous photograph by Joe Rosenthal of The Associated Press showing Marines raising the American flag on the islet's Mount Suribachi.
Retired Marine Maj. Gen. Fred Haynes, who was a 24-year-old captain in the regiment that raised the flag on Mount Suribachi, was surprised and upset by the news.
"Frankly, I don't like it. That name is so much a part of our tradition, our legacy," said Haynes.
Japan can forget their past, but they re-write the history of what they did in WWII to the people who lived through it.
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