Langley School Board Must Apologise for Hanging Japanese Imperialism Flag in Classroom

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Ken Hoff, the spokesperson for Langley School Board, recently commented the hanging of Japanese war time flat in a high school history class, as: “The flag is being actively used as a teaching tool … you can’t start editing and censoring history.” These comments are very offensive and we request an apology from Langley School Board, to tens of millions of victims, their families and descendants of Japanese imperialism ; as well as thorough investigation into this incident, by the Ministry of Education, BC.

Under this flag, war crimes were committed, including and not restricting to:

Attacks on neutral powers

Mass killings

Human experimentation and biological warfare

Use of chemical weapons

Torture of prisoners of war

Execution and killing of captured Allied airmen


Forced labor

Sex Slaves



Alone in China, this flag oversaw the death of 17,000,000–22,000,000 Chinese civilians during Japanese invasion to China. There were 3,800,000–10,600,000+ military casualties after July 1937 (excluding Manchuria and Burma campaign), more than 1,000,000 captured,  266,800–1,000,000 POWs dead.

Under this flag, over 1 million Japanese men were sent to China, they were perpetrators of war crimes but also victims of Japanese Imperialism, and failed Japanese school education at that time. Half of them were never able to return their homes.

My late grandparents’ home were bombed by the Japanese planes and they had been homeless for a long time. They almost lose their lives too. To their death they never received an apology for the loss of their own and only property, not to mention any compensation, by the Japanese government.

The close relationship between China, Japan, Korea and other east Asian countries started over two thousand years ago with many trade and academic exchanges. The friendly relationship between those countries resumed very soon after the WWII. Many Japanese, represented by Prince Mikasa, admitted Japan’s guilt for the war with China. The hanging of this flag at a BC school today trigger the tension between races, divide the Canadian community and undermine decades of peace efforts numerous Chinese, Japanese and Koreans were/are making.

Ken Hoff had argued that: “While there have been many messages condemning the use of the flag, a lot of them are from well outside the school district…” This is very shocking to learn that the Langley School Board would think that the symbol of the brutal imperialism is only connected with their own school district. This makes me very concerned about the competence of Langley School Board. Are they doing teacher hiring, due diligence checks and supervision properly?

Iris Chang gave her life for writing The Rape of Nanking: The Forgotten Holocaust of World War II , one of the first major English-language books to introduce the Nanking Massacre to Western and Eastern readers alike. This Langley history classroom incident happens just days after the 14 years anniversary of her death. Ken Hoff’s comments also come just days after the Remembrance Day and showed great respect for tens of millions of lives lost, under that particular flag.

We request an apology from Langley School Board, as well as thorough investigations by Ministry of Education BC.