Cultural Differences In Ww2

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2. There were many cultural differences between the U.S. and Japan that contributed to the brutality of the war during World War Two and it seemed “as if the two nations were from different planets” (page134) . One cultural difference between the Japanese and the United States is religion. In 1851 when President Fillmore met with U.S. Navy officials about American expansionism in the Pacific, a report named “Documents Relative to the Empire of Japan” discussed how American whalemen were captured and held in prison. These imprisoned whale-men were told that ‘Christ was “the devil of Japan.” The Japanese believed in Shintoism and Buddhism (page 16). Christianity and Shintoism and Buddhism are very contradicting religions. This presented a huge…show more content…
On Friday, July 8, 1853, four U.S. Navy ships arrived in Tokyo Bay. The Japanese were stuck “back in time” (page 23). They had never seen these gaizin, foreigners, with these “huge, noisy, black-cloud-belching monsters” (page 21). Japanese fishermen or other civilians never seen steam engines or let alone “were not even aware of [their] existence” (page 21). Commodore Matthew Perry, commander of the mission to secure Pacific steamship lines on July 8, entered Tokyo Bay. To the Japanese the Americans were “… devils with white faces,” (page 21) and Americans thought of the Japanese as “subhuman, different, and slanty-eyed” yellow devils (page 137). These opposites in opinions of appearance and religion caused World War 2 to be fought brutally, which created this atrocious rivalry between these two countries. During World War 2, the Japanese and the Americans “had been culturally programmed to view each other as repulsive” (page 135). This made fighting on both sides “heartless” and beyond “human decency” (134). The hatred between these two civilizations derived “a process of dehumanization” to get “large numbers of soldiers to kill other people” for killing to come “naturally” or “easily” (page 134). The Japanese felt the Flyboys were inhumane because of the bombings of hospital, factories, and houses. Americans and Japanese had an endless list of cultural opposites such as counting numbers on their hands, reading a book, or greeting someone (page 134). Americans and Japanese “didn’t even agree what year it is.” America and Japan were cultural polar opposites, which made them more enthusiastic to kill each other. For example, “American soldiers who had little enthusiasm for killing other western Christians often jumped at the chance to kill Japanese” (page 138). Likewise feelings by the Japanese appeared, for example, “I feel like I am watching filthy water running from
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