[EDITORIALS]Set up an expert history panelThe government party and the opposition seem finally to be reaching an agreement on the issue of setting historical records straight, over which they have been sharply at odds lately. The Uri Party will back down from its demand to create a special commission within the National Assembly to cover the matter and the Grand National Party will support the establishment of a non-governmental commission consisting of experts in the field. The Democratic Labor Party and the Democratic Party are also of the same opinion.
We have on many occasions suggested that setting historical records straight should be put in the hands of an expert group, not a political one. Should any facts disadvantageous either to the government party or the opposition be disclosed, it would surely lead to a partisan fight and trigger a debate that would repeat itself every time the administration changed. There are many issues that were buried or hidden during the Japanese colonial era and the 26 years of dictatorial regimes that need to be uncovered. But this task should be done carefully and approached with prudence lest the entire country falls into a debate over ancestral wrongs.
The proposal by certain civic groups and victims’ groups to establish a “civilian-centered government agency” is also inappropriate. While it is ridiculous that those alleged to have been wrongdoers participate in the investigation, it would also be unfair for the victims to become the main investigators because this would lead to emotional interventions. It is also doubtful that the civic groups have the expertise and objectivity required.
There is no guarantee that a government agency charged with such a task would not follow in the footsteps of the Commission on Suspicious Deaths in confusing the public by contradicting government policies. If we are to set history right, we should leave the job in the hands of a politically independent and professional group whose continuity would be guaranteed even in face of administration changes.
The political community should stop this conflict immediately and take its hands off the task of organizing history. If not, the mudslinging will not cease.
Do we not have a serious economic problem and an unemployment situation to attend to? Let’s stop talking about yesterday and start talking about today and tomorrow.