“Almost all people have this potential for evil, 

which would be unleashed only under certain dangerous social circumstances.”

–Iris Chang

The Nanjing Massacre was the mass killing of Chinese citizens by the Japanese Imperial Army after it took over Nanjing in 1937 during the Sino-Japanese War. This war predated WW2. The number of Chinese people killed range between 100,000 to more than 300,00. This destruction of Nanjing and the complete devastation of lives was ordered by Matsui Iwane who was the commanding general of the Japanese Central China Front Army that had captured the city. Over the next few weeks, Japanese soldiers carried out Matsui’s orders and carried out mass executions and tens of thousands of rapes. The army looted and burnt down the surrounding towns, destroying nearly one third of the civilisation surrounding Nanjing. Shortly after the end of WW2, Matsui and Tani Hisao, the lieutenant general who participated in the acts of murder and rape, were found guilty of war crimes by the International Military Tribunal for the Far East. They were executed.