Date of letter:1994-03-03
Address of author:Wuxi City, Jiangsu Province
Date of event:1938-02-12
Location of event:Wuxi City, Jiangsu Province
Name of author:Zhao Xijin
Name(s) of victim(s):12 people including Zhao Renlin (Zhao Xijin’s grandfather) and Zhao Wang’s (Zhao Xijin’s grandmother)
Type of atrocity:Other Massacres, Others（OM, OT）
Other details:The Japanese army crazily invaded Wuxi and pursued the policy of “burn all, kill all, loot all”. Common people fled one after another. On the morning of February 12, the Japanese soldiers came to my house, killed 12 people in my family, and looted all our possessions. As a survivor, I feel extremely sad and angry whenever I recall the misfortune of my family. My whole family requires the Japanese government to compensate the victims and apologize.
Respected Mr. Tong Zeng:
In 1992 I read your name on the book “Chinese Civilian Compensation Claim against Japan” and the Information Weekly, I know you have done a lot of work for Chinese people’s compensation claim against Japan, which is a good deed to benefit both the country and the people. In order to find you, I once wrote several letters to Beijing, this time I entrusted a senior engineer in Beijing to identify your work place and exact address, and I found you at last. I hereby tell you my miserable family history, in the hope of obtaining your assistance. I have enclosed a copy of my Claim for Compensation to the Japanese Government, I know you are a passionate person , and have delivered documents to the Japanese Embassy in China for many victims. Therefore, I also want to ask for your help, to do your best to seek compensation for our war victims, and demand justice from Japan, and redress grievances for innocent commoners. If you receive this letter, please give me a brief reply, if necessary, I will certainly go to Beijing to visit you.
Zhao Xijin, an old worker with bitter suffering
March 3, 1994
Correspondence address: PO Box 102, Wuxi City, Jiangsu Province Postal code: 214035
On February 11 and 12, 1938, the Japanese Army insanely invaded Mashan area in Wuxi, we common residents one after another fled to avoid disaster. Because Mashan Town is situated in the middle of Taihu Lake, surrounded by water in four sides, the residents were unable to escape, resulting in the Mashan Disaster. Back then I was only ten, I personally witnessed Japanese soldiers wearing yellow woolen uniform holding white background red sun flag implemented “Burn All, Kill All, and Loot All” policy, within two days they slaughtered more than 1500 innocent commoners, and set fire to 3600 civilian houses. On the morning of February 12, our family also met with disaster, twelve lives were killed by Japanese soldiers (my grandfather Zhao Renlin, grandmother Ms. Zhao Wang, mother Zhu Aju, Elder Aunt Zhao Damei, Younger Aunt Zhao Xiaomei, Third Uncle Zhao Ating, Third Aunt Zhou ××, Uncle-in-law Wang ××, Son of Third Uncle, Son of Uncle-in-law and my two younger brothers), all the assets were looted by the Japanese soldiers (2 5T wooded boats, about 1 catty of gold jewelry, several dozen silver dollars, 5000 catties of grain, precious clothing and furniture, etc), the venue is northwestern side of Beihu Production Brigade, Heping Village, Mashan Town. I’m a survivor, and lived 55 years after the disaster. During the subsequent 55 long years, I frequently recalled those pitiable endeared family members, and shed sad tears for countless times. War brought heavy disaster to the people, and destroyed my family, for which I feel extremely sorrowful and indignant. In the WWII, the Japanese Imperialism owed a debt of blood to us Chinese people, but till today there’s no compensation. In the past the Chinese government didn’t request Japan to give compensation, which was based on the two countries’ conditions. Today it’s natural for us Chinese people to demand compensation, because the right time has come. Today Japan is very prosperous and rich, and perfectly capable of undertaking the blood debt owed during the WWII. We demand the Japanese government to apologize to all the victims, and compensate due economic loss.
Incumbent Japanese Prime Minister Hosokawa said in his policy speech that, his government wished to express “profound reflection and apology” for its past actions in the neighboring countries in Asia, but it had no plan to offer compensation. We will never agree! Japan is a defeated nation, offering compensation is natural. From the perspective of truly deepening future friendly relation between Japan and people of other countries in Asia, making earnest war compensation is an issue that cannot be avoided.
We hope the leaders of our Chinese people will take the standpoint of the Chinese people to seek compensation for us war victims .
Zhao Xijin, old worker with bitter suffering (hand print) and sisters
September 2, 1993
Zhao Xijin’s miserable family history is true, it is hoped his compensation claim can be satisfied.
Wuxi City Mashan Town Heping Village Villagers’ Committee (Village Committee Seal)
Comrade Zhao Xijin is a retired worker of our factory.
Jiangsu Shuguang Optical and Electronic Instrument Factory (Seal)
Reference 6 seniors aged above 70: Shen Yueqin (name seal), Quian Xinxiang (name seal), Huang Zhiwei (name seal), Li Er (name seal), Chen Cuanyu (name seal), Wu Shourong (name seal)
My current family address is: Room 104, No. 82 Huguang Residential Quarters, Huishan Neighborhood, Wuxi City, Jiagnsu Province Postal code 214035
Comrade Zhao Xijin rented No. 7 Xinxiang as residence.
Wuxi City Beitang District Wuqiao Neighborhood Office Xinhuiqiao Residents’ Committee (Seal)
Zhao Xijin rented No. 7 Xinxiang as residence
Wuxi City Beitang District Wuqiao Neighborhood Office (Seal)
February 3, 1994
Comrade Zhao Xijin is a resident of our residents’ committee.
Wuxi city Beitang District, Huishan Neighborhood Office Huguang Residents’ Committee (Seal)
Appendix: Claim for Compensation to the Japanese Government
1. 12 persons were killed, based on RMB 500,000 yuan per person, equivalent to RMB 6 million yuan
2. Two wooden boats, based on 10000 yuan each, equivalent to RMB 20000 yuan
3. 500 grams of gold, based on RMB 140 yuan per gram, equivalent to RMB 70000 yuan
4. 50 silver dollars, based on RMB 30 yuan each, equivalent to RMB 1500 yuan
5. 5000 catties of grain, based on RMB 0.6 yuan each catty, equivalent to RMB 3000 yuan
6. Precious clothing and furniture articles, based on RMB 15000 yuan
Totaling RMB 6,109,500 yuan
Claimer: Zhao Xijin (hand print) and sisters
February 8, 1994
Redress grievance, administer justice!