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Japanese Parliament Debate Over Pacifism Erupts in Brawl

Japanese Parliament Debate Over Pacifism Erupts in Brawl

Pile-on over pacifism

A heated discussion in Japan’s upper house erupted into a brawl last week. Breaking with their pacifist past, for the first time since World War II Japan voted to allow its military to fight on foreign soil.

Lead by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, the measure was meant, “normalise Japan’s military posture, which has been restricted to narrowly defined self-defence and aid missions by a pacifist constitution imposed by the US after World War II,” reported Al Jazeera.

Opponents fear a shift away from pacifism will draw Japan into US-lead wars.

Al Jazeera reports:

The upper house of the Japanese parliament passed the law on Saturday, despite fierce attempts by opposition politicians to block the move.

The approval makes the legislation into law, loosening post-World War II constraints on the use of force by the military to its own self-defence only.

The legislation, passed by the more powerful lower house in July, sparked sizable protests and debate about whether the nation should shift away from its pacifist ways to face growing security challenges.

The motion, backed by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s ruling coalition, passed following days of heated debate that, at times, descended into scuffles and shouting matches between parliament members.

Fierce opposition

Opposition politicians on Thursday pushed and shoved in a failed bid to stop a committee from approving the bills.

Abe has faced fierce criticism for his handling of the bills, and there are growing signs the campaign has taken a political toll.

Opinion polls show the vast majority of Japanese are against the changes, and Abe’s once sky-high approval rating is dropping.

Tens of thousands of people have taken to the streets in almost daily rallies in a show of public anger on a scale rarely seen in Japan.

On Friday, hundreds gathered again outside the parliament in Tokyo.

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Japan has the strangest relationship to the truth of its WWII past. Either the war was due to a vast conspiracy to destroy Japan or the a totally Marxist analysis. Unlike Germany’s honest evaluation of its guilt -Japan has only an inchoate sense of something bad in our past which we must never discuss in detail

The first guys in were the ones supporting the bill. They did that to protect the official signing the measure. Apparently this happens on occasion because the opposition immediately knew what was happening and rushed in themselves, but were too late. The passage of the bill is probably a good thing for the US because it allows Japan to take on a greater share of the burden of its own defense. With China and North Korea saber rattling Japan needs to ramp up.

The Japanese are (mostly) ethnic Koreans.

My paralegal friend who lived in Korea told me that you won’t see a fender-bender without an accompanying fist fight.

And, NO! I will not mention any of this to my Korean or Japanese friends. I like my ribs unbroken…

    gospace in reply to Ragspierre. | September 20, 2015 at 5:07 pm

    Ummm..Don’t think so. Not if they can tell each other apart at a glance. And when I was over there, I could also. Can definitely tell the difference between either of them and Chinese at a glance.

      Ragspierre in reply to gospace. | September 20, 2015 at 5:28 pm

      Look it up.

      jhkrischel in reply to gospace. | September 20, 2015 at 6:18 pm

      Seems like Rags is confused – yes, there are lots of ethnic Koreans in the yakuza, and indeed, lots of ethnic Koreans in Japan (who, fun fact, are often not citizens because it is jus sanguinis rather than jus soli in Japan), but this does not make most Japanese ethnic Koreans.

      It would be akin to asserting that most Americans are ethnic Mexicans based upon the observations of East L.A..

    Ragspierre in reply to Ragspierre. | September 20, 2015 at 8:08 pm

    Sorry, boys. I only know what I read…

    “Currently, the most well-regarded theory is that present-day Japanese are descendants of both the indigenous Jōmon people and the immigrant Yayoi people. The origins of the Jōmon and Yayoi people have often been a subject of dispute, and a recent Japanese publisher has divided the potential routes of the people living on the Japanese archipelago as follows:

    Aboriginals that have been living in Japan for more than 10,000 years. (Without geographic distinction, which means, the group of people living in islands from Hokkaido to Okinawa may all be considered to be Aboriginals in this case.)
    Immigrants from the northern route (北方ルート in Japanese) including the people from the Korean Peninsula, Mainland China, Sakhalin Island, Mongolia, and Siberia.
    Immigrants from the southern route (南方ルートin Japanese) including the people from the Pacific Islands, Southeast Asia, and in some context, India.”

    According to some…
    The historical connection between Japan and Korea is very ancient. In the seventh century, many Japanese nobles claimed Korean ancestry. Nara-period documents ( A.D. 710—784) claim that the Yamato regime had control of part of Korea. Archaeological evidence, however, demonstrates an early Korean presence in Japan, but no comparable Japanese presence in Korea.
    Read more:

      DaveGinOly in reply to Ragspierre. | September 21, 2015 at 12:38 am

      All of that means that Koreans and Japanese share a common ancestor. The Japanese are not “Korean” any more. Saying so is like saying that we’re chimpanzees because we share a common ancestor with them.* Both chimps and humans have become different from their common ancestor, both are neither the same as their common ancestor nor the same as each other. The same is true of the Koreans and Japanese – both have descended from a common ancestor and both are now different from those ancestral people and are therefore different from each other.

      *Jared Diamond not withstanding, his book stretches the truth about our relationship to chimps – we are not The Third Chimpanzee; the book title is hyperbole. A much better book is S. J. Gould’s Ontogeny and Phylogeny, the most important book I’ve ever read as far as changing my world view. (Taking the title of Diamond’s book literally would mean that every human ancestor since our last common ancestor would also be a “chimpanzee,” something that’s obviously not correct. Human ancestors after the ape-human split are of several very obviously different genera, and therefore can’t be Pan, so we can’t be either.

Yeah, and did the decimating Godzilla get a vote?

In any case, the Japanese need to defend themselves against an aggressive NK and China. It makes sense to take it to their soil.

Pacifism is not about being doormat. It is more like offering a token of peace. And, if not accepted or compromised into acceptance then all hell breaks loose until a resolution takes place via surrender.

Embrace or exclusion.

LOL! Sorry, for a minute I thought I was watching Japan beat S.Africa in the Rugby World Cup (good on Japan….)

It’s easy to be a pacifist when it doesn’t cost you a damned thing.

Some stories and headlines just write themselves!

Not to worry, the brawl was entirely defensive.

Obviously, Japan needs a more balanced Diet.

You mean those pacifist Japanese are actually willing to fight for what they believe in? Heavens!

Let’s hope that never catches on here! The Right would have the vapors and faint dead away. Smelling salts would be required! They obviously need more lessons in surrendering gracefully, and we have just the GOPe to give them! (The GOPe is extremely well-practiced in preemptive surrender.)

Here we’re much more civilized. We immediately surrender, rather than do anything as disagreeable as non-bipartisanship. Then we have a fundraiser and explain to the folks back home that nothing could be done- at least not until we have the presidency as well as both houses- and a majority in the Supreme Court too, mustn’t forget that!

No sir, no fighting for our magnificent GOPe! (Besides, it might interfere with business as usual, which is emptying taxpayers’ pockets while lining their own; can’t have that, now can we!)

buckeyeminuteman | September 21, 2015 at 3:23 pm

Yeah, they look like pacifists to me from these pictures.