Public schools reject rightist history textbook

Rightists' desperate efforts to have the nation's junior high schools adopt a history textbook which glorifies Japan's war of aggression have resulted in failure.

The notorious "New History Textbook" and the civics textbook edited by the Japanese Society for History Textbook Reform (published by Fuso Publishing) were rejected by all of the 542 school textbook adoption districts.

Only a handful of public schools with special education classes for handicapped pupils in Tokyo and Ehime as well as right-wing private schools have decided to use them.

The Children and Textbook Japan Network 21, which has been campaigning to block the "Society" textbooks, on August 16 issued a statement saying this is a victory of citizens' good sense.

The Network 21 Secretary General Tawara Yoshifumi said that this result saved the mutual trust between Japan and the other Asian nations which had been offended by the Japanese government approval of Fuso Publishing's history textbook.

Tawara went on to say, "In April, the Japanese Society for History Textbook Reform had a clear advantage over us. But since then, many local organizations were established to block the adoption and successfully changed power relations in our favor."

In the past seven months, over 1,000 meetings were held across the country to discuss the textbook issue.

Akahata's editorial of August 17, entitled "People's good sense blocked the intrusion of Fusosha's textbooks" said in part:

"Schools must be based on the Constitution and the Fundamental Law on Education, and must provide children with opportunities to learn that Japanese society after the War is conditioned by reflections on or rejection of Japan's wars of aggression and colonization of Asian countries.

The government must revoke its approval of Fuso Publishing's textbooks. It is also necessary to not allow schools which adopted Fuso Publishing's textbooks to justify the war of aggression in classrooms and call for their adoption to be reconsidered." (end)