Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has failed the world again, after he repeated on Wednesday in Capitol his shameful dodging game on history.
In a high-profile speech before a joint session of the U.S. Congress, Abe expressed "deep remorse" over Japan's "actions" before and during WWII that "brought suffering" to other Asian countries.
By using such watered-down terms, the nationalist Japanese leader once again failed to deliver an unequivocal apology the world deserves for his country's heinous systematic war crimes seven decades ago.
Adding to the world's frustration, the statement, preoccupied with slick wordplay to evade Japan's responsibility, has won the applause of U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, whose country suffered greatly from militarist Japan's deceit and barbarity.
As for Abe, who has been crying for Japan becoming a "normal country," it is time to remind him that evasiveness and whitewash of that dark chapter of human history will in no way help his country earn the respect and credibility it has longed for and get accepted by the international community.
Abe's historical denialism and revisionism have also once again left his nation shamed. When he headed for a speech in a Harvard University building, he could only go through the back door, as the main entrance was crowded with protestors demanding an apology.
Biden, for his part, needs to be sensitive when touching on issues so sensitive to so many nations in Asia, where his country has a high stake. His endorsement of Abe's Congress speech has done nothing but rub salt into the unhealed wounds of those victimized nations, including the U.S. itself.
Persistent in bolstering Tokyo's role and might in the Asian-Pacific region in a broader scheme that many suspect is targeted at China, Washington should draw lessons from history. Spoiling and empowering such a deceitful enemy-turned-ally will end up shooting itself in the foot.
For without seriously reflecting on its past crimes against peace and humanity, the island country is untrustworthy. Should it get emboldened, it would be more likely to retake its self-destructive path and bring about regional troubles and even global disasters.
In a nutshell, no one deserves a future if he always shirks the past. That applies to all, including Washington and Tokyo.
It is sarcastic that although having visited the Lincoln Memorial before delivering the unapologetic speech in Congress, Abe has obviously failed to appreciate the special relevance of a famous adage generally attributed to the former U.S. president.
"You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time."