The digital retrospective exhibition “Soochow University and the International Military Tribunal for the Far East,” luring thousands of visitors in two weeks at its first debut last year as part of the celebration of SU’s 120th anniversary, was once again on view in the school’s history room Hwai-En Memory Archives at Waishuangsi Campus for most of March, 2021.
The display was divided into three segments. The first section “Soochow Spirit” features the historical photos of the military trials and guests attending conferences on Jurisprudence. With touch screen technology, exhibition goers can read the story of each picture and revisit the history of the Far East military tribunal. The second part “Praise to Soochow” depicts the debates during the trial, giving a closer look into the importance of SU’s legal professionals in the trial through the videos played on the arc monitor. The third part “Fact-finding Notes” introduces the delegation of the trial and pictures of Tokyo Trial.
“War” seems to be an unfamiliar word in our recent history. However, in different cultural histories, there must be one, WWII in this case, or even more that helped people absorb the harsh lessons of it. To trial the Japanese war crimes after WWII, judges and prosecutors from 11 countries organized the International Military Tribunal for the Far East. As SU’s School of Law has been known for its expertise in common law, Soochow played a vital role in the delegation that represented the Republic of China in the trial.
Contributions made by Soochow elites involved in the trial were enormous. As one of the founders of SU’s School of Law and an essential role in the school’s reactivation, late Chairman of the School Board Wang Chung-Hui recommended numerous talented alumni for the trial attendance. Among them, Wen-Bin Gao found one key piece of evidence by himself when he discovered an article with a photo that described two Japanese soldiers undertaking a "killing spree" competition in Nanjing. The two, claiming that they had killed 211 Nanjing citizens, were sentenced to death after Gao mailed copies of the newspaper to the Chinese government.
As captivating as the one last year, the exhibition this year added some photos and information not previously shown due to the limitation of the venue. Through a more lively digital way, the event helped people understand and remember the history of the international military tribunal for the Far East and the role of Soochow’s law school alumni in the trial.
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