|Diorama of Okinawan Fish Peddler|
Peace Park is located on the southern tip of Okinawa at a place where many Japanese soldiers committed suicide by jumping off of the steep cliffs rather than face capture or death at the hands of the enemy. Forty years ago the park was a solitary walk through a couple of dozen markers and monuments. Today it encompasses an enormous building that serves as a learning center about the war, along with many monuments to the brave soldiers of both sides who died fighting on Okinawa in 1945. There were also thousands of civilian casualties in that harrowing battle.
|Section of the American Wall|
One of the most striking tributes is composed of many black granite walls that perforate the landscape. These walls contain the names of the soldiers of both sides who died fighting the Battle of Okinawa. (It is much like the Vietnam wall in Washington, DC.)
|Live Rounds of Ammo on Display Under Floor of|
Bus loads of Okinawan school children - mostly young adolescents - were touring the park while we were there. Many of them were undoubtedly the great-grandchildren of the brave souls who fought so valiantly to save their island and their way of life from the invaders - both the Americans and the Japanese.
|View of the Pacific from Peace Park|