In case you aren’t up to speed on your Japanese history, the nation’s post WWII Constitution prohibits military action unless it’s in self-defense. Clearly a sensible approach, which is why the current Japanese government, led by the demonstrably insane and incompetent Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, wants to get rid of it.
This story is very important. Not only will this action increase the likelihood of World War III in the Far East, but it’s another important example of a government acting against the will of the people.
Polling has indicated the Japanese public is against a pivot toward militarization and war, but Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is pushing forward nonetheless. In fact, the current legislation to allow overseas military intervention has already passed the lower house of government. This prompted many Japanese to emerge from their decades long political apathy and get out into the streets. It’s estimated these protests were the largest in recent memory.
The AP reports:
TOKYO (AP) — Mothers holding their children’s hands stood in the sprinkling rain, some carrying anti-war placards, while students chanted slogans to the beat of a drum against Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his defense policies.
Japan is seeing new faces join the ranks of protesters typically made up of labor union members and graying leftist activists. Tens of thousands filled the streets outside Tokyo’s parliament on Sunday to rally against security legislation expected to pass in September.
“No to war legislation!” “Scrap the bills now!” and “Abe, quit!” they chanted in one of the biggest protests in recent memory. The bills would expand Japan’s military role under a reinterpretation of the country’s war-renouncing constitution.
In Japan, where people generally don’t express political views in public, such rallies have largely diminished since often-violent student protests in the 1960s.
The demonstrations started earlier this year and grew sharply after July, when Abe’s ruling coalition pushed the legislation through the more powerful lower house despite polls showing a majority of Japanese were opposed.
Just like in Greece, the Japanese public is rapidly being forced to come to grips with the fact that their opinions don’t matter and they are politically irrelevant. Of course, this is also the case in these United States. Recall: New Report from Princeton and Northwestern Proves It: The U.S. is an Oligarchy
A group called Mothers Against War started in July and gained supporters rapidly via Facebook. It collected nearly 20,000 signatures of people opposed to the legislation which representatives tried unsuccessfully to submit to Abe’s office last Thursday.
The security bills would permit the military to engage in combat for the first time since World War II in cases of “collective defense,” when Japan’s allies such as the U.S. are attacked, but Japan itself is not.
Abe’s government argues that the changes are needed for Japan to respond to a harsher security environment, including a more assertive China and growing terrorist threats, and to fulfill expectations that it will contribute more to global peacekeeping.
…and to distract a disillusioned population from the disastrous economic policies of its government. Recall from earlier this year:
The topic has become almost a regular item in women’s magazines, traditionally known more for covering entertainment, beauty, health, food and the Imperial family.
Takashi Watanabe, a deputy editor-in-chief of Shukan Josei (Ladies Weekly), said there has been a growing appetite for social issues among readers, especially since Fukushima.
This is a great sign for Japan. However, when will Americans emerge from their political slumber? Will it take several decades of economic decay such as in Japan?
About half a century ago, 300,000 students, many of them Marxist ideologues, staged violent protests, repeatedly clashing with police, over revising the U.S.-Japan security treaty. Those protests played a role in driving Abe’s grandfather, then-Prime Minister Nobusuke Kishi, out of office after his government approved the revision.
Apparently, they love failed political dynasties in Japan as well.
“I’m afraid the legislation is really going to reverse the direction of this country, where pacifism was our pride,” said a 44-year-old architect who joined Sunday’s rally with her 5-year-old son. “I feel our voices are neglected by the Abe government.”
You’re not the only one…
Of course, when it comes to Japan this has been a long time coming. Recall the following published in 2013:
Democracy is dead. Globally. If we fail to bring it back, history will see us as one of the most inept and spineless generations in history.