Japan Current Affairs - 2019
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Nagaland observed the 75th Anniversary of the Battle of Kohima. The event was attended by the representatives from the UK and Japan who spoke on the theme of ‘Remembrance, Reconciliation and Rebirth’.
The dignitaries from the UK and Japan sought reconciliation and forgiveness for the sufferings and pain caused against each other at the Battle of Kohima, that was fought in three stages during the Second World War in 1944.
Battle of Kohima
Battle of Kohima is considered as the turning point of the Japanese U Go offensive, or Operation C mission launched in India in 1944 during the Second World War. The Battle of Kohima was fought in three stages from 3 April to 22 June 1944 around the town of Kohima in Nagaland in northeast India:
- From 3 to 16 April, the Japanese attempted to capture Kohima ridge, a feature which dominated the road by which the besieged British and Indian troops of IV Corps at Imphal were supplied. By mid-April, the small British and Indian force at Kohima was relieved.
- From 18 April to 13 May, British and Indian reinforcements counter-attacked to drive the Japanese from the positions they had captured. The Japanese abandoned the ridge at this point but continued to block the Kohima–Imphal road.
- From 16 May to 22 June, the British and Indian troops pursued the retreating Japanese and reopened the road. The battle ended on 22 June when British and Indian troops from Kohima and Imphal met at Milestone 109, ending the Siege of Imphal.
The battle is often referred to as the “Stalingrad of the East”. Kohima was the theatre of the War in 1944 and the Nagas were drawn into it on both sides some with the British and some with the Japanese.
Japan has revealed the name of the era which will define the new emperor’s reign when he ascends the Chrysanthemum Throne next month following a historic abdication. The era has been named as ‘Reiwa’.
- “Reiwa” consists of two characters: “Rei”, which can have meanings related to “order” but also “auspicious” and “Wa”, usually translated as “peace” or “harmony”.
- Japan is still using imperial calendars for private and public documents as well as computer records.
- Hence the new era has a huge impact on daily life and people tend to recall major events in public and private life by when they fell in a certain era
- 2019 was known as Heisei 31, or the 31st year of current Emperor Akihito’s rule.
- The name for the new imperial era, Reiwa was taken for the first time from an ancient Japanese book instead of from Chinese classics.
The era of “Reiwa” begins on May 1, a day after 85-year-old Emperor Akihito abdicates and hands over the Chrysanthemum throne to his eldest son. Crown Prince Naruhito.