December 30, 2018



Sequence number:s3506
Date of letter:1994-10-18
Address of author:Chenzhou City, Hunan Province
Date of event:1941-07
Location of event:Changsha City, Hunan Province
Name of author:Yin Yingke
Name(s) of victim(s):Yin Yingke

Type of atrocity:Air Bombings (AB)
Other details:In July 1941, I fainted during bombing by the Japanese Army, with two eyes deformed. My eye sight of both eyes deteriorated, and there was scars on the face. Note: The envelope is missing

Petition Demanding Damage Compensation from Japan for My Losses during Japan’s War of Aggression Against China

To the Japanese Ambassador to China and the Prime Minister of Japan,

  I am an innocent victim during Japan’s war of aggression against China and hereby demand a damage compensation of USD 40,000 from the Japanese government in accordance with international laws such as the Yalta Agreement, Cairo Declaration and Potsdam Proclamation. I kindly ask the Japanese embassy in China to forward the petition to the Japanese Prime Minister and give me a reply.

  I am Yin Yingke, born in Changsha, Hunan, China in 1929 and I have retired from the CPPCC of Chenzhou, Hunan. At about 1 p.m. on a day in early July 1941, I was bombed by a Japanese plane while I was at the home of my classmate Huang Fu in Wenchangge Yadong Coal Store in Beimen, Changsha. I was thrown from a 4-meter high place to the gate of a neighbor’s house about 6 meters away. I blacked out instantly, with blood all over my swollen face, sand in my eyes, and deformation of my right eyelid. The result is that my eyesight has been seriously damaged and my right eye has only half the eyesight of the left eye since then. Moreover, there was a wound of 4cm wide, 2 cm long and 1.5 cm deep in my right forehead, which still leaves a concave scar. And I had a severe concussion, resulting in long-term headache and dizziness and significant memory decline. The bombing also caused a 4cm-diameter hole in my left wrist, resulting in comminuted fracture and wrist deformation. Even until today, I cannot stretch my left wrist, or use much strength and suffer from dull pain during climate changes. According to the then doctor, there might be small shrapnel left in the bone due to the lack of an operation as the Japanese army was invading Changsha and the people were evacuated, which has caused partial disability and carpal distortion. Additionally, a big cut was made by the shrapnel in the top right of the belly button, which still leaves a scar of 6cm wide and 2.5cm long. My right knee was seriously injured, causing permanent deformation in the right foot. Even until today, my right foot is thinner and weaker than the left one. When I was bombed, I was only 12, an age of rapid growth and development. The bombing caused serious damage to many organs and massive bleeding, but I was not cured due to the lack of money. Moreover, as the Japanese army invaded Changsha about 1 month after I was bombed, I had to flee from the city for shelter and suffered from malnutrition. So, my height was greatly affected. Both my parents are tall, and my younger brother is 1.85 meter tall, but I am only 1.6 meter and permanently suffered from disease. I didn’t gain weight until the recent two years.

  Apart from serious physical damage, the bombing changed my promising fate and caused serious losses to me.

  I was born into a poor family and when I was 3, my father and grandfather died. When I was 5, my mother remarried a handyman from the countryside by taking my 3-year-old younger brother with her. So, I was left with my old grandmother to beg for a living. I had no money to go to school, so I learned to read and write with the help of neighbor students. I hadn’t gone to school until I was 9 and a half years old when I was admitted to a Christ Church School to study in the second grade (I was 10 and too old to study in the first grade) for free because comrade Zhang Huoguo with the Lung Disease Hospital pitied me and wrote a letter to the school. Besides, he asked my grandmother to wash clothes for him so he would support our monthly living expenses. But in less than half a year in September 1939, the Japanese army invaded Changsha and all the people were evacuated from the city. Mr. Zhang also left for Ningbo. Afterwards, the Japanese army was driven away, so I could return to school. But I had to go to school without breakfast, begged food after the school was over at noon and took it home to eat with my grandmother. It’s the same with dinner. Later my classmate Huang Fu saw me and told his parents. His mother Mrs. Huang deeply sympathized with me and as my academic scores were great, she took me as a foster-son and arranged me to eat at her house in Wenchangge Yadong Coal Store in the daytime while tutoring her son and bring some food home to my grandmother in the evening. Unexpectedly, on a day in early July 1941, great suffering and disaster fell on me. On this morning, the wife of Divisional Commander Peng with the Nationalist Party, along with Secretary Liu and Bank Chief Chen, came to bid a farewell to Mrs. Huang, saying that Commander Peng had been transferred to defend Chongqing and that she would take her daughter Peng Lili to Chongqing in 3 days. As Mrs. Peng had no sons or fertility anymore due to illness, she always wanted to have a son. After knowing about my family situation and academic scores from Mrs. Huang, she decided to take me as her son, saying that she would send me and her daughter to study aboard after we graduate from university, and wanted my grandmother to go to Chongqing with them. She also planned to go shopping with me after lunch to buy new clothes for me. Everyone felt so happy for me. Indeed, happiness came too suddenly. However, in less than 4 hours, a complete disaster fell on me, Mrs. Peng and Mrs. Huang, etc. After 7 of us, including Mrs. Huang and her two sons, had lunch, Mrs. Peng was preparing to go shopping with me. Suddenly, an air raid alarm sounded, so we all went hiding under a specially-made large rectangle table near the back gate. Mrs. Peng was sitting on a low stool, holding me and Mrs. Huang was sitting with her oldest son Huang Fu, holding her second son Huang Ning. Secretary Liu and Bank Chief Chen were hiding beside us. Soon, we heard the sound of Japanese planes and the bombing getting closer and closer. At last, I saw a flash of big fire and blacked out. I didn’t come to myself until I was placed by the rescue team on the floor in Xiangya Hospital. Thus, I was forever parted with Mrs. Peng. My happy life was changed by the bombing, adding physical suffering to poverty. Later I was told that the bomb was dropped at a place only 6 meters away from us, killing Mrs. Peng, Mrs. Huang and her second son Huang Ning on the spot. Secretary Liu was wounded in the neck, Bank Chief Chen in the chest, etc., Mrs. Huang’s oldest son Huang Fu in the bottom and chest, etc. And my wounds were described before. Only Huang Fu’s father Huang Daowu, who wasn’t home and Mrs. Liu, the cook, escaped the doom.

  Last lunar January, after reading the article History Is Not Forgotten: Records of Chinese People Demanding Damage Compensation from Japan from the Issue 10 of the monthly magazine Reader’s Digest of 1992, I sent you a letter of petition demanding damage compensation to seek your guidance and requested you forward it to the Japanese government. But the letter was returned due to the lack of a postal code. Later, I was sick for several times and then was out to handle other matters, so the letter was delayed until now. I decide to directly demand compensation from the Japanese government according to the speech of the Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman on March 11, 1992 and the answer the Communist Party General Secretary Jiang Zemin gave to the Japanese reporter before his visit to Japan on April 1, 1992 (in which Jiang said, “The Chinese government gave up war reparations against Japan, but doesn’t restrict the people from demanding compensation from Japan.” The Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman said, “The civil victims during the Sino-Japanese war can directly demand compensation from Japan.”) Please don’t deny any compensation claim with the excuse that Prime Minister Zhou had actively given up war reparations against your government. Prime Minister Zhou only gave up war reparations between governments on behalf of the Chinese government, but he was not authorized to give up damage compensation on behalf of civil victims. So I hope you can seriously address the issue.

  We victims have always thought that your current Emperor and Head of Government didn’t commit the crime of invading China, but are responsible for addressing Chinese civil claims for damage compensation in a fast and sincere manner. The US President Bush personally wrote a sincere apology letter to Japanese civil victims that launched the war of aggression and granted damage compensation. Your country also compensated the civil victims from other countries for their losses, except those from China, which suffered most from your war of aggression, and now provides extensive resources and sales markets to transform you into an economic big power. The Chinese civil victims have waited half a century for your compensation, Now, most of them have passed away, but you still haven’t stated your position. Is your government planning to naturally clear the debt after all the victims are dead? Let me ask you, if your government doesn’t settle the issue, how could it be beneficial to remove the hatred between the peoples of the two countries and maintain the friendship? How could it be beneficial to our country’s long-term, stable assistance in complementing your country’s inherent defect? How could you escape international and public condemnation? I think the answers are definitely no. So, I hope you make a prompt, sincere and wise decision to settle the historical issue as soon as possible, otherwise, we civil victims will unite with domestic and foreign victims to take new measures.

  I don’t think it’s excessive to demand a damage compensation of USD 40,000 because the actual losses are far more than that. It’s fair to say I demand such a compensation amount after considering the endurance capacity of the Japanese people. Set aside my physical suffering caused by the Japanese bombing, the loss of my happy life alone is worth times of RMB 40,000 because after I became Mrs. Peng’s son, I would study harder, further study abroad and then become a technology professional to make great contributions to the world in exchange for a considerable income. If I returned to my homeland after studying abroad, the award for one scientific achievement is far more than USD 40,000.

  Direct witnesses of my suffering that I know of include:

  1. Huang Fu, male, now 63, survivor from the bombing, a retired engineer from Copper Mine of Yongping, Qianshang, Jiangxi, lives in the dormitory of the mine.

  2. Wang Guolin, male, now 79, a then neighbor who personally carried me home from the hospital after the bombing. He is a retired worker from Construction Company of Bei District, Changsha and now lives with his son Wang Maosheng who works with Changsha Dyeing Factory in Shaoshan Road, Changsha.

  3. Yi Hesen, male, now 79. He was then vice-captain of the security team of Wenchangge, a leader who organized rescue for us and now still lives in Wenchangge, Bei District, Changsha.

  4. Huang Yulan, female, now 70, locally known as Grandmother Yude, an older female cousin of Huang Fu. She knows best about my suffering and now lives in Team 6, Guolin, Integrated Farm in the northern suburban area of Changsha.

  5. Wang Huankun, male, 68, a then neighbor. He has retired from Cigarette Factory of Chenzhou, Hunan as an accountant and now lives in a residential dormitory in Tangjia Alley, Bei District, Changsha.

  6. Yin Zimei, male, 63, Vice President of the People’s Court of Bei District, Changsha, now lives in a dormitory near the court.

  Apart from them, their offspring and the offspring of the then surrounding neighbors indirectly know about my suffering.

  I am sending my wound pictures and evidence with the letter and can provide information about witnesses if an investigation is required. If you need to check any information promptly, please call my house number: 254690. The long-distance district code of Chenzhou is 0735. To make a long-distance call, you may dial 0735 before the house number. So it is 0735254690. If a face-to-face interview is needed, you may send someone here or I may go to Beijing.

  My address: Dormitory in the compound of the municipal government of Chenzhou, Hunan, the room on the left of Floor 2, Unit 1, New Building 2.

  My mailing address: Yin Yingke, CPPCC of Chenzhou, Hunan, China. Postal code: 423000.

Civil victim Yin Yingke
October 18, 1994

s3506-p1 s3506-p2 s3506-p3 s3506-p4 s3506-p5 s3506-p6 s3506-p7 s3506-p8 s3506-p9

Air Bombing(AB)
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