I hereby nominate the following as my choice as the year's most outrageous excuse...
'Chinese Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing says Japan should face up to history and take responsibility for its army's use of sex slaves during World War II.
He was speaking after Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe caused controversy last week by questioning whether women were "coerced" into sexual slavery.
Many historians say Japan compelled up to 200,000 women, mostly Chinese and Korean, to become sex slaves. But some Japanese scholars deny that force was used to round up the women, blaming private contractors for any abuses.'
'private contractors', indeed. Now THAT'S what I call passing the buck.