Short short with English summary    

1945年11月の早朝、私は池袋駅東口駅前にいた。一年3ヶ月続いた学童集団疎開の解散式だった。 見回すと、1944年8月に出発したときの、駅も街も全て焼け落ち、まさに焼け野が原だった。 我が家も学校もなかった。 東京では、1945年3月から、戦争に負けた8月までの半年間でほとんど全域が焼失し、市民10万人以上が焼け死んだ。 広島・長崎では、一発ずつ、2発の原子爆弾で、14万人・7万5千人が亡くなった。8月6日・9日のことだった。敗戦・戦争終結は8月15日。 1945年2月・ドイツ・ドレスデンの爆撃では、資料によってまちまちだが、3万人〜15万人が死亡した。戦争終結の3ヶ月前だった。 私たちが集団疎開の出発をしたのは、1944年8月だが、その一年半前、1943年2月には、スターリングラード攻防戦は既に終結していた。死者・民間人4万人・軍人70万人。
スタインベックの「怒りの葡萄」は、監督・ジョン・フォードで1940年公開。 そこでは、極貧の農民一家が、襤褸トラックに一家と大荷物を満載してよたよたと、オクラホマからカリフォルニアに職を求めて2000kmの大移動をする。途中、何度もガソリンを買うことになるが、何のためらい、思い入れも描かれてはいない。 日本では、「ガソリン一滴、血の一滴」と言われ、石油資源確保のために一路、戦争に駆り立てられた。
日本人の基礎教育普及度が高く、識字率が高いことは、世界的に良く知られている。 しかし、我々は、戦争遂行上不可欠な学術産業の情報以外、周辺世界の文化に無知なことすら知らず、「世界に冠たる神国日本」に何の疑いも持たなかった。 大日本帝国の名のもと、国全体の陰謀に、見事にしてやられたと言うことだ。  もっとも今日でも、大演説や宣誓に際し、必ず自分達の神の名を唱えるのが当たり前の国々は、米国をはじめとして数多い。 今日現在の我々の世界観は、大丈夫かな。
It was an early morning in November 1945. I was with a group of some hundreds of school children. We just had returned from a mountain village in Nagano prefecture where we had spent 15 months. All of us, as one school unit, had been evacuated from Tokyo. We were gathering at the plaza in front of Ikebukuro station. There was nothing but half ruined railway facilities and a vast burnt out field where once had been a residential town with cozy shops and rather many schools.
From March to August 1945, almost all the Tokyo area was burned down, Tokyo had been full of wooden buildings. More than 100,000 civilians were dead, burnt. Hiroshima and Nagasaki were nuclear bombed, one bomb for each city, killed 140,000 and 75,000, in 6th and 9th of August. 15th of August, the war was over. In Germany, Dresden was totally destroyed in February 1945 and 140,000 civilians were killed. It was just 3 months before the end of their war. We were evacuated from Tokyo in the summer 1945. The Battle of Stalingrad had already been over in February 1943, there 40,000 civilians and 700,000 soldiers were killed.
Meanwhile in USA, in 1939, a movie film, “Gone with the Wind” was released. We could see the film in 1952, 7 years after the war. It took 13 years counting from the big hit in USA. In 1940, “The Grapes of Wrath” was released. In the film, a poor farmer family made a long journey in a worm-out shaky truck from Oklahoma to California looking for job. Under their journey, 2,000km, they had to refill gasoline many times. Buying gasoline was a simple match; they could buy it anywhere, cheaply. In Japan, we had a nationwide propaganda; “A drop of gasoline is a drop of blood.” As to secure the oil resources Japan marched towards the war.
The literacy ratio of Japanese has been very high. We have had a quite good ground education system. But the contents of the education and the information were strictly controlled. We were ignorant. We didn’t realize that we were ignorant. All of Japanese had no doubt about the slogan; “Japan over the world. Japan the divine nation.” We were dancing after the music played by a bunch of readers who utilized the Emperor system.
But today in the world, still there are people, head of state or generals who swear by God;  Their own God.
Can we be sure that our concept of the world is sound and universal?