While he never met the father who went off to war when he was just three months old, a Japanese man felt that donating money to the country where his father died was a sort of reparation from his family. Kenji Hirakawa of Fukuoka sent 200,000 yen (about US$2,000) to the Philippine embassy in Tokyo as his contribution to the massive international relief effort to help the victims of Super Typhoon Haiyan.
In the letter he sent with the money, Hirakawa shared that his father’s body was never recovered and lies somewhere in Luzon where he served with the Japanese Imperial Army during World War II. He said he is sending the money in solidarity with the Filipino people and also as his own reparation for the troubles his father and his country may have caused during its three-year occupation of the Southeast Asian country. The embassy shared that Hirakawa said in his letter he was aware of the various calamities that have befallen the Philippines in the past months. He hopes his contribute, no matter how small, can help alleviate the condition of the survivors. “However, the story of Hirakawa … ran deeper than that. His ties to the Philippines have been sealed with blood,” read the statement from the embassy.
Japan has been one of the first countries to respond to the call for foreign aid more than a week ago when the typhoon devastated several islands in the archipelago. The Self Defense Force has sent its largest overseas deployment yet, together with their medical team and also a civilian medical contingent. This is on top of the $30 million in cash aid that Japan has already pledged.
[ via Inquirer ]