In this wide ranging article.?@Pierre Pariseau draws some of the connections between the pro-war (and sometimes pro-Americanm) media, rightist politicians, police repression and the lack of discussion on issues of life and death in Japan
George Bush came to town two weeks ago. More than 9000 Tokyo police officers were out to greet him and assure his visit would be without any glitches…..
…Several demonstrations have been held in Tokyo since George pledged to free Iraq and teach democracy to the world. Compared to the protests in other countries they were fairly tame. The education system of the last two decades and the non stop primetime childish programs aired nightly on every channel have turned the youth of this country into a docile generation incapable of protesting or uttering a complaint except the ubiquitous word ?gshoganai?h. Infrequent discussions of personal or societal problems are usually punctuated with this expression, which means, “it can’t be helped”….
Police State Repression
…At anti-war rallies the force manages to make the peaceful demonstrators look quite scary to the subdued citizenry of this country. Whenever permission is given to walk the streets of Shibuya, the city’s youth playground and shopping Mecca, dozens of undercover officers standing side by side are seen filling their notebooks with names and relentlessly taking pictures and zooming their video cameras on the marchers from every imaginable angle…
Right Wing Welcomes George W
…Both Prime Minister Koizumi and current Tokyo Governor Ishihara, who is well known for his racist rhetoric, are heroes to the right-wingers. The governor has repeatedly said that Japan should attack North Korea. He is also known for his arrogant anti China opinions; he insists that Japan rearm itself, which is merely a case of publicly stating the obvious as Tokyo has been quietly building military strength for years. Last week he described the people of China as “ignorant” in reference to their recent success in launching a manned spaceship using what he considers outdated technology. A few days before he repeated that Koreans had chosen to be colonized by Japan. The black buses praise the governor on the streets even more since he has said a high-ranking official deserved the bomb found in his garage in September. Thus, most rightwing groups who had been vociferating their anti American stance for years suddenly support the American attack on Iraq hoping it will provide justification for a similar assault on North Korea…
Instilling Fear of North Korea Good for Election
Renewed dialogues with [Kim] should be the top priority of the Japanese government. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Installing fear and insisting on rumours of missiles heading to Japan are having a dangerous effect and they will, most probably, re-elect Koizumi and his cronies on November 9. George remains a good model. We can expect him to be back soon for more Japanese goodies.