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Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
October 10, 2004
1. The Peace Bell
There is a huge bell hung right in front of the entrance, which you will definitely not miss it while you enter. It is made to call for world peace and to remember the 300,000 innocent victims who lost their lives in the massacre.
2. Crazy Snowflakes
A very long "diary" in the form of poetry with many chapters, Crazy Snowflakes is written by one of the survivals during the Nanjing Massacre. It’s printed on a piece of bronze plate, which is right next to the Copperplate Passages of Footprints. Crazy Snowflakes is dedicated to the victims who suffered in the Nanjing Massacre.
3. Copperplate Passage of Footprints
Forty meters in length and 1.6m in width, the Copperplate Passage of Footprints carries 222 footprints of the eyewitnesses of the Nanjing Massacre. The eyewitnesses were either survivors of the massacre or delegates to the Far East International Military Tribunal for the trial of the Japanese war criminals. Most of the survivals are between 74 and 100 years old.
The passage was made by December 13, 2002 to mark the 65th anniversary of the massacre..
4. The Museum
The museum showcases a lot of pictures, graphics, documentaries, and tools that were used during the massacre, including guns, swords, bullets, nails, and axes. Most of the pictures are extremely unpleasant to look at, especially those with naked woman who have just been raped and those of little kids who have been crying and trying to escape to survive.
There are also letters written by the people during the war, which were donated by the survivors to make this museum a success. While reading one particular letter written by a woman, I felt that my heart was swollen and I took a deep sigh. I then walked away, as I couldn’t take it anymore.
Except for those correspondences and documents showcased, most pictures have both Chinese and English captions.
5. The Mausoleum
The Mausoleum holds many skeletons of the victims. Most of them were unearthed quite a while after the massacre. There are a few more significant ones being housed in a glass tomb. Each of the skeletons was numbered with captions like their age, male/female, and what is wrong with the skeleton (like a bullet in the scalp or nails on the joints).
Personal advice - An extremely depressing sight in Nanjing that you shouldn’t miss no matter how little time you have!
Opening Time: 7am to 5pm daily
Admission Fee: RMB 8 per adult, however, I visited it for FREE on a Sunday
From journal My Love for Nanjing
by Lauren T
October 29, 2001
Nanjing is probably most famous for being the victim of some of the worst war
atrocities in history in December of 1937. Nanjing was the capital of China at
the time, but the government retreated to a more protected city shortly before
the Japanese occupied Nanjing. The Japanese invasion forces then raped,
tortured and murdered the civilian locals by the thousands over the next month
resulting in over 300,000 fatalities.
I knew before that the memorial was built at the site of mass grave that was unearthed and the bodies were put up for display. I thought
this sounded like it was in pretty poor taste when I first heard but in practice it really wasn't so tasteless. The skeletons have been unearthed and examined by forensic scientists who determine their approximate age, gender and
cause of death. It really hit home when you have a skeleton in front of you labelled "this is a sixty-year-old woman with a bullet through her head", "this is a 19-year-old girl with a nail driven into her skull", or "here is a six-year-old boy who has been decapitated".
The memorial also contains a rather stark looking garden with various pieces of concrete sculpture and a museum with some rather graphic photographs.
As one who tends to see the world through rose-colored glasses, maybe it is important that every once in a while I allow myself to be reminded of what a horrible place the world can be. I wouldn't say that I enjoyed this experience, but there is certainly something to be gained from it.
From journal Weekend in Nanjing
January 9, 2001
From journal Nanjing - a great Chinese city