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Aizu region still regards the Meiji Restoration with some resentment

16 3 11

This year, Japan is celebrating the 150th anniversary of the Meiji Restoration, or a political revolution in 1868 that brought down the Tokugawa Shogunate and restored imperial rule, in a myriad of events.

There is, however, no festive mood in the Aizu region of Fukushima Prefecture.

The Aizu han (feudal domain), which remained loyal to the Tokugawa Shogunate, found itself on the wrong side of history when a civil war started in 1868 because it led the losing pro-Tokugawa forces in the conflict. Consequently, it was labeled as “rebels” and attacked by the pro-imperial forces led by the Choshu (today’s Yamaguchi Prefecture) and Satsuma (Kagoshima Prefecture) domains.

To mark this bitter anniversary, people in Aizu have put up banners and flags around train stations and local government buildings that carry poignant messages about the region’s tragic stories related to the civil war, known as the Boshin War.

One reads: Hand down the faith in righteousness to........

© The Asahi Shimbun