By Eric Jaffe
In the wake of worldwide struggle II, the Allied forces charged twenty-eight jap males with crimes opposed to humanity. Correspondents on the Tokyo trial notion the facts fell such a lot seriously on ten of the accused. In December 1948, 5 of those defendants have been hanged whereas 4 obtained sentences of existence in criminal. The 10th was once an excellent philosopher-patriot named Okawa Shumei. His tale proved strangest of all.
Among all of the political and army leaders on trial, Okawa was once the lone civilian. within the years best as much as global struggle II, he had defined a divine project for Japan to steer Asia opposed to the West, prophesized a good conflict with the us, deliberate coups d’etat with army rebels, and financed the assassination of Japan’s leading minister. past “all vestiges of doubt,” concluded a labeled American intelligence record, “Okawa moved within the most sensible circles of nationalist intrigue.”
Okawa’s guilt as a conspirator seemed basic. yet at the first day of the Tokyo trial, he made headlines all over the world by way of slapping celebrity defendant and wartime best minister Tojo Hideki at the head. Had Okawa misplaced his sanity? Or used to be he faking insanity to prevent a grim punishment? A U.S. military psychiatrist stationed in occupied Japan, significant Daniel Jaffe—the author’s grandfather—was assigned to figure out Okawa’s skill to face trial, and hence his fate.
Jaffe used to be no stranger to insanity. He had noticeable it his entire lifestyles: in his mom, as a boy in Brooklyn; in infantrymen, at the battlefields of Europe. Now his professional eye confronted the last word try. If Jaffe deemed Okawa sane, the conflict crimes suspect could be hanged. but when Jaffe came upon Okawa insane, the thinker patriot may well get away justice for his position in selling Japan’s wartime aggression.
Meticulously researched, A Curious Madness is either expansive in scope and vibrant intimately. because the tale pushes either Jaffe and Okawa towards their postwar war of words, it explores such various themes because the roots of belligerent jap nationalism, the advance of wrestle psychiatry in the course of international warfare II, and the complicated nature of postwar justice. Eric Jaffe is at his top during this suspenseful and engrossing old narrative of the fateful intertwining of 2 males on diversified facets of the battle and the area and the query of insanity.
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Additional resources for A Curious Madness: An American Combat Psychiatrist, a Japanese War Crimes Suspect, and an Unsolved Mystery from World War II
A Curious Madness: An American Combat Psychiatrist, a Japanese War Crimes Suspect, and an Unsolved Mystery from World War II by Eric Jaffe