SUPREME COMMANDER FOR THE ALLIED POWERS
Civil Information and Education Section
3 March 1948
MEMORANDUM FOR THE CHIEF, CIE:
SUBJECT: War Guilt Information Program
I. THE PROBLEM PRESENTED
1. To determine the advisability and feasibility of intiating a high priority information program desingned to
a. offset the growing tendency on the part of certain Japanese and Americans to consider the use of the atomic bomb at Hiroshima as "an atrocity" and
b. prepare the Japanese public for the verdicts of the IMTFE.
II. FACTS BEARING ON THE PROBLEM
1. Under General Orders No.4 (SCAP), dated 2 October 1945, as amended by General Orders No.14 (SCAP), dated 17 October 1945, and Geberal Orders No.27 (SCAP), dated 3 June 1946 (Tab A), one of the function of CIE is to:
"a. Make recommendations to:
(3) Make clear to all levels of the Japanese public the true facts of their defeat, their war guilt, the responsibility of the militarists for present and future Japanese suffering and privation and the reasons for and objectives of the military occupation by the Allied Powers. "
2. In accomplishing its mission, CIE first initiated a War Guilt Information Program attending through the period, October 1945 to June 1946. This program was implemented through all public information media in Japan; newspapers (Tab B), books (Tab C), magazines (Tab D), radio (Tab E), and motion pictures (Tab F).
3. Early in 1946 (overlapping to a certain extent the program described in paragraph two above) a second information program was initiated and has continued to the present. This program carried a more positive tone of democratization and hope for the future of Japan as an orderly, peaceful member of the family of nations. Recurring references have been made, however, to the causes of the war, Japanese war guilt and war crimes. Some of these references have been continuous XXX pointed. This program has been implemented through the press (Tab G), the radio (Tab H), motion pictures (Tab I), and books (Tab J).
4. Information recently received from G-2 (CIS) and other sources indicates that:
a. Some individuals and groups in Japan, inspired by the writings and public remarks of certain scientists, clergyman, authors, journalists and professional de-graders in the United States, are breading the atom bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki as "atrocities". There is also a growing feeling XXXX some of these Americans, reflected in retrospecting sentiments of certain Japanese, that whatever educational or philanthropic movements are undertaken in Hiroshima with American funds should be done in a spirit of "atonement" for the alleged atrocity.
b. There is a growing feeling among certain Japanese, particularly among these working to justify to the world and the Japanese the nation's aggression and ultra-nationalism, that Tojo has stated the case convincingly and should be admired by the Japanese people for his courage. This should even extend to martyrdom of Tojo, in the event of his execution.
c. Both of these points constitute a foundation upon which the new quiescent ultra-nationalists conceivable might seek to rebuild their structure after the Occupation has been terminated.
1. Despite the information program implemented to date by CIE, new developments indicate that an extensive and intensive information program is necessary, designed to counter current and/or suspected attitudes relating to misinterpretations of the Hiroshima-Nagasaki bombings, the war crimes trials, and the Tojo role, and the possible emergence of totalitarianism as a result of these misinterpretations.
2. That the practicability of any such information program will be determined by the extreme care with which it is handled in order that it will achieve the desired XXXX and not prove inimical to other objectives of the Occupation.
That the preliminary draft of the proposed information program attached as Tab "K" be approved.