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Spinning history

The week's news at a glance.

Tokyo

Japan’s Ministry of Education this week approved a history textbook that China and South Korea said glosses over Japan’s militaristic past. The book, aimed at junior high schoolers, barely mentions the 1937 Nanking massacre, when Japanese troops slaughtered Chinese soldiers who had surrendered, then killed some 300,000 civilians. It also ignores the enslavement and rape of thousands of South Korean women during World War II. The ministry approved an earlier version of the book in 2001, but there was so much protest that few school boards bought it. Critics say the revised edition is just as bad. “It confuses right and wrong,” Chinese government spokesman Qin Gang said. “It confounds black and white.”

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