Experts to Discuss New Japanese War Crimes Records Volume and Records Guide
Press Release · Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Live Online Chat To Be Hosted by The Chronicle of Higher Education

What: Contributors to a new reference volume on Japanese War Crimes Records will participate in a live online discussion to be hosted by The Chronicle of Higher Education on Thursday, January 18, at 2:00 p.m. EST. To participate, go to Questions may be submitted in advance, beginning Monday after Noon EST.

The experts will discuss the volume, Researching Japanese War Crimes Records: Introductory Essays,PDF file and an electronic guide that will help researchers locate and use the thousands of newly declassified and previously declassified files in the National Archives related to the war in the Pacific.

The new book and records guide are available in PDF format online. Free printed copies of the book and guide (on CD-ROM) may be requested by contacting us. The book is available while supplies last.

Who: The subject area experts who will participate in the discussion are:

  • Dr. Ed Drea is author of the introduction to Researching Japanese War Crimes Records. He recently retired as the chief of the research and analysis division of the U.S. Army Center of Military History and is a specialist in Modern Japanese History.

  • Dr. Greg Bradsher contributed two chapters to Researching Japanese War Crimes Records that deal with the exploitation and return of captured Japanese records. He also compiled the 1,700-page finding aid that accompanies the volume. He is an archivist at the National Archives and Records Administration, specializing in World War II intelligence, looted assets, and war crimes.

Why and Background:

The Nazi War Crimes and Japanese Imperial Government Records Interagency Working Group (IWG) locates, identifies, inventories, and recommends for declassification currently classified U.S. records relating to Nazi and Japanese Imperial Government war crimes. As a result of a thorough investigation by U.S. government agencies for classified records related to Japanese War Crimes pursuant to the Nazi War Crimes and Japanese Imperial Government Records Disclosure Acts, more than 100,000 pages of records were recently declassified.

To help researchers find, understand, and make full use of these newly available records, as well as the large volume of records already in the stacks of the National Archives, the IWG produced the book, Researching Japanese War Crimes Records: Introductory Essays,PDF file and the records guide, Japanese War Crimes and Related Topics: A Guide to Records at the National Archives.

The volume and records guide are the first major resources available to researchers interested in these records. The volume provides readers with a historiographic context for both newly declassified records and for records that have been available but largely unused. Included is new information about the capture, exploitation and controversial return to Japan of Imperial Government records. The voluminous electronic finding aid will help researchers identify records, providing an entryway into a vast archive of records that have been underused.

For more information about the new resources, see the news release. For additional information about the IWG, go to their web page.

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