WWII sites need protection

Updated: 2015-07-22 08:53

(China Daily)

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WWII sites need protection

The embassy of the United States in Chongqing in war time. [Photo by Luo Wangshu / China Daily]

College students in Ningbo, East China's Zhejiang province, surveyed 28 historical sites from the Chinese People's War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression (1937-45) around the city and found most of them are in poor condition and may disappear soon.

China should protect such sites and apply for them to be included on the list of world heritage.

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization included Auschwitz Concentration Camp in Poland as part of the world's cultural heritage in 1979. Not only has the site been well protected since then, but also its horrific purpose is known to more people around the world.

The authorities should classify the war heritage into different categories and choose representative ones to be included on the world cultural heritage list, such as the camp used by the Japanese Imperial Army's biological warfare unit in Harbin, Heilongjiang province, Northeast China. Thousands of people were used as lab mice in the camp from 1936 to 1945 in gruesome experiments.

Governments at various levels should set aside special funds to take care of these sites, such as the airport of the Flying Tigers, the volunteer air force from the United States that helped China fight the Japanese invaders in the early 1940s, and the houses of the "comfort women", or sex slaves for the Japanese Imperial Army, which may be torn down in the country's ongoing urbanization.

These legacies of the war are irrefutable evidence of the Japanese militarists' brutality and the best textbook to teach future generations lessons about bravery, perseverance and the value of peace.

The government should help find the historical value of these sites and raise the public's awareness of their importance.

The above is an abridgment of a Guangming Daily Article published on Tuesday.