Date of Letter:1993-03-28
Address of Author:Changde City, Hunan Province
Date of Event:1942
Location of Event:Changde City, Hunan Province
Name of Author:Gong Jianrong
Name(s) of victim(s):Gong Jianrong’s father
Type of atrocity:Otehrs (OT)
Other Details:Witnesses of the disaster suffered by my family are grandmother Chen Daying, the 4th grandfather Gong Daoshu, the 5th grandfather Gong Daomang and the 5th grandmother. In 1942, the Japanese army burst into our house and shot my father. My father faked death and they bagan to rob food and properties, and then burnt the house.
March 28, 1993
Dear Mr. Tong,
First, I would like to send my regards to you and your family! I am from Team 14, Wawudang Village, Wawudang Township, Dingcheng District, Changde City, Hunan province.
Mr. Tong, recently my family and I read a newspaper report that you had launched a campaign for “Civilian Claims against Japan.” We would like you to help us to claim our due reparations against the Japanese invaders for their barbarous killing of my family and for causing great financial losses, which all took place before the liberation. Thank you!
Mr. Tong, let me now briefly state calamities my family had suffered: (the witnesses for these calamities include my grandmother Chen Daying, 84 years old; fourth granduncle Gong Daoshu (82), fifth granduncle Gong Daoyi (78) and fifth grandaunt). In 1942 when the anti-Japanese war was at a full combat phase, a group of isolated Japanese soldiers (about twenty people) fled from Changde to Hubei. When they passed by our home and saw that we were relatively rich, they marched right into the house. At that moment, my grandmother was out (she said she was in a farmer’s home nearby) and my grandfather was home husking rice. When she saw the Japanese soldiers entering the backyard, she had no time to get my grandfather. She ran away to the back mountain with other villagers to monitor the situation from there. My grandfather had no idea that the Japanese soldiers had come into the yard. When he saw the soldiers, they also saw him. The Japanese started to shoot him when he was just about to run. A bullet hit his right arm; then he pretended to be dead. Maybe the soldiers were too hungry; they ignored my grandfather and began recklessly searching for food.
After they finished eating, they started their ‘burn all, kill all, loot all’ policy. They plundered one dan (1 dan =20 liters) of rice which was just de-husked, then set fire to our house and swaggered off., However, their actions brought immense adversities to my family. From then on, my father had a hard time coping and the whole family fell into deep trouble. My grandfather’s wound began to fester. After the Japanese incursion, my family turned from prosperity to penniless. My grandfather could not afford proper treatment and died in anguish in May of the following year. The whole series of events caused great physical and mental trauma to the family.
Mr. Tong, my family strongly supports your great cause. Its success can rehabilitate millions of Chinese people and serve as a powerful weapon to prevent the Japanese Government from falsifying the history. It is also a rightful and remarkable undertaking for maintaining the world peace.
Mr. Tong, my family and I would like you to report what Japanese invasion has transgressed on our family to the Japanese Consulate General in China; and to ask the Japanese Government to compensate 3 billion US dollars (including life and property indemnities) for our family’s financial losses. Mr. Tong, because of the limited time, I will stop here today. If you need other materials, please write to me. I will answer all your questions seriously. Please submit my family’s case to the Japanese Consulate in China. Thank you very much!
Lastly, my family and I wish you great success on the peace-promoting cause that you have launched. We also wish you and your family a happy life and good health.