December 8th

8 Dec

Today is 十二月八日 (December 8th). The 67th anniversary of 真珠湾攻撃 (the attack on Pearl Harbor). Actually, America observes it on December 7 because the attack occurred on Sunday, December 7, 1941 Hawaii time…but in Japan, it was already Monday, December 8, 1941 (due to the time difference).


The anniversary of 真珠湾攻撃 (the attack on Pearl Harbor) is observed more in America than here in Japan, of course. In Japan, the WW2 anniversaries that are observed are the dates of atomic bombings of Japan (on August 6th and 9th) and the war’s end (on August 15th).

(Click here to read my post about the anniversary of the atomic bombing, click here to read my post about the anniversary of Japan’s surrender, and click here to read my interview with an American WW2 pilot.).


Today is also the 28th anniversary of the murder of John Lennon (of the English band “The Beatles“), who was shot and killed on 千九百八十年十二月八日 月曜日」 (Monday, December 8, 1980) in New York City.


I remember when I heard the news. I was eleven years old, and I had many classic rock albums (vinyl) that were given to me by my father and my uncle…including Pink Floyd, Cream, Rolling Stones, Aerosmith…and The Beatles. So, I knew who John Lennon was, and I was shocked that he was killed! Especially by a self-proclaimed Beatles fan!

Mark Chapman asked John Lennon to autograph the new (at that time) John Lennon / Yoko Ono album, “Double Fantasy” (which he did)…then he shot John Lennon in the back four times.


(Mark Chapman’s police mugshot)


(“Double Fantasy”)

John Lennon’s Japanese widow, オノ・ヨウコ (Yoko Ono) is in Tokyo for a concert to commemorate the 28th anniversary of John Lennon’s passing with a concert at the famous 日本武道館 (Nippon Budokan) called “John Lennon Super Live“.
At the promotion for the concert last week, she distributed pieces of a smashed clay pot that she made…and asked everyone who received a piece to return in ten years so that the pot can be reassembled.

Do you know that the world’s only official “John Lennon Museum” is in Japan?
It’s at the さいたまスーパー・アリーナ (Saitama Super Arena) near さいたま新都心駅 (Saitama Shintoshin Station) not too far from Tokyo.
Admission is ¥1500.

17 Responses to “December 8th”

  1. cocomino July 22, 2011 at 11:36 pm #

    You know December 8th well.:)
    I’m sorry John Lennon Museum was closed.
    I can get that place about one hour by train.
    I hope that the museum will open again.


    • tokyo5 July 23, 2011 at 1:37 am #

      >You know December 8th well.

      Well, these are two well-known events in history.

      >I’m sorry John Lennon Museum was closed.

      Have you ever visited it?


      • cocomino July 23, 2011 at 3:46 pm #

        I didn’t have any chance to go to John Lennon Museum but I visited Saitama Super Arena. 🙂


      • tokyo5 July 23, 2011 at 8:34 pm #

        Because the John Lennon Museum wasn’t very conveniently located and admission was ¥1,800 or so, I never bothered to visit it either.


  2. tokyo5 December 13, 2009 at 1:33 pm #

    I mentioned the world’s only official John Lennon Museum (which is in Japan) in this post.

    I just learned that it will close soon.


  3. tokyo5 January 2, 2009 at 11:01 am #

    Beatles Fan…

    Well, I guess it’s difficult for a musician to change the world…but I think John Lennon made a big impact on the world.

    It’s tragic that he was murdered.


  4. Beatles Fan January 2, 2009 at 4:05 am #

    well john lenon tried to change this world but failed.


  5. tokyo5 December 10, 2008 at 10:06 pm #


    Thanks for commenting on my blog.

    I’ll check that band out ASAP. Are they Korean?


  6. tokyo5 December 10, 2008 at 10:05 pm #


    >if he’d (Roosevelt) known about the attack he would’ve staged an ambush and sank the Japanese fleet instead of losing most of our Pacific squadron.

    Some say that’s why there were no aircraft carriers in port. To save them from the attack that they knew was coming.

    >Took a class on WWII back in high school.

    From an American high school.
    As I said, Japan teaches WW2 history from a different perspective.

    Anyways, I try to keep my blog away from potentially sensitive subjects.
    My point was only that war is terrible…every country involved does some bad things.

    Ironically, John Lennon died nearly on the anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attacks. As he was such an advocate for world peace.


  7. Jeffrey December 10, 2008 at 3:25 pm #

    Nice write up and thanks so much for commenting on my blog about the anniversary of John Lennon’s death.

    Thanks for also checking out my blog. When you have time, check out the music category and a band called Buckacre.


  8. Chris December 10, 2008 at 11:40 am #

    Meh, I’ve analyzed this quite a bit. Took a class on WWII back in high school. There’s no escaping the facts of what the Japanese did in China, the Philipines, etc. There’s no escaping the fact that the Soviet Union clearly had designs on getting as much Japanese territory as possible, including Hokkaido (revenge for the Russo-Japanese War). One also must remember that Japan started the war, not the USA.

    That said, no matter how horrible the war was, and it was pretty bad, at least the peace has been good.


  9. tokyo5 December 10, 2008 at 8:38 am #

    I know that’s what’s taught in American history classes…but not how it’s taught here.

    Having heard both sides…I think the truth lies somewhere in the middle.

    (And many Americans say that the atomic bombing of Japan saved lives…but no Japanese person would ever say that. Here it’s believed that Japan was close to surrender and America had initially intended to use those bombs on Nazi Germany…but Germany surrendered before the bombs were ready. So Japan became the target simply to show the world America’s military might).


  10. Chris December 10, 2008 at 3:51 am #

    It is true there was an embargo. I believe this was largely in response to Japan’s invasion of China and things like the Rape of Nanking.

    By the time the war started the USA was already out of the depression. Even without the war, we could’ve done well. I think it highly unlikely Roosevelt would’ve known about the attack and just let it happen. More likely, if he’d known about the attack he would’ve staged an ambush and sank the Japanese fleet instead of losing most of our Pacific squadron.

    And as far as the atomic bombs go, I could argue they actually saved lives on both sides. Projected casualty figures if we’d had to invade were well over a million on the Japanese side, based on our invasion of Okinawa. That, of course, doesn’t even include the lives of Americans that were saved by not having to invade.

    Also, it was imperitive we end the war before the Soviets really got involved. It’s bad enough they took the islands north of Japan. Imagine if they’d occupied and kept Hokkaido, or something like that.

    Lastly, the bombs were hardly the worst thing done during the war. The firebombing of Tokyo did far more damage and killed far more people, as did similar bombings in Dresden.

    I’m not saying bombing Hiroshima and Nagasaki was the best thing we could’ve done, but given the choices, it was far from the worst.


  11. tokyo5 December 9, 2008 at 9:54 pm #


    >Love the new look to the site.

    Thanks. And thanks for commenting again. Please visit and comment often!

    >I understand they wanted to knock the USA out of the war before we could get into it

    Actually, most Japanese people believe that America was already in the war even before they officially declared war.
    The US had naval embargoes on Japan and Germany, which was essentially was joining the allies.
    Japan attacked Pearl Harbor to try to end the embargo, which was crippling Japan.

    Many people believe that the American president (Roosesvelt, wasn’t it?) knew about the planned attack before it happened and allowed it because it would cause the American people to support officially joining the war…which would help the US economy out of the Great Depression.

    >it might’ve required another atom bomb.

    Most Japanese people think even one atomic bomb wasn’t necessary!

    Anyways, just the differences between opinions, experiences, teaching (and propaganda) of the US and Japan.


  12. Chris December 9, 2008 at 2:55 am #

    Love the new look to the site.

    The Pearl Harbor attack was pretty bad, though certainly not even in the top ten of bad things done during World War II. Heck, it’s not even in the top ten of bad things the Japanese did during WWII.

    Still and all, it was certainly an unwise thing for Japan to do. I understand they wanted to knock the USA out of the war before we could get into it, and had they managed to get the Enterprise and the Yorktown (I think that was the other carrier), they might well have pulled it off, at least in the short run. In the long run we still would’ve wound up with a larger, better navy and still won the war, though it might’ve taken until 1946 and it might’ve required another atom bomb.


  13. tokyo5 December 8, 2008 at 10:59 am #

    >I remember “Double Fantasy” had just came out, so we listened to that a lot.

    That’s the album that John Lennon autographed for Mark Chapman just before he (Mark Chapman) shot him (John Lennon).


  14. Eric December 8, 2008 at 10:31 am #

    I remember when John Lennon died. My parents told me and we were all really shocked. I remember “Double Fantasy” had just came out, so we listened to that a lot.


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