Korean protest

Protesters struggle with police officers during a rally against Japan’s plan to reform its constitution in front of the Japanese Embassy in Seoul, South Korea, on Thursday.

  • 10

    In_japan

    I wonder if J-govt has plans to destabilize Korean peace (its very easy, you know) just announce something about the abduction, sex-slaves etc...) Meanwhile, life in Japan is as usual.

  • -27

    smithinjapan

    I guess it takes Koreans to do something against what the majority of Japanese don't want but just shrug and say, "Shou ga nai, ne" instead. Get MORE people out there, and get them out in front of all Japanese government buildings. Have them constantly bring up the issue of sex-slaves and Nanjing and the atomic bombings. Have them bring up Fukushima. Embarrass them on the world stage -- that is the only way Japan listens... well... for a little while anyway.

  • -19

    Mr Japan

    korean dislike and hate us.

  • 3

    HaraldBloodaxe

    I wonder why?

  • 33

    Thunderbird2

    Hey Smith, hate Japan much?

    So is this a protest against Abe's desire for Japan to be able to take offensive military action as well as defensive? What are they afraid of? That Japan will overnight return to the militarism of the '30s and '40s and start invading other countries? Do they not realise that the Japanese of 2014 are not the same as those of 1944? Modern Japan has no desire for war, no interest in invading other countries. The UK can take unilateral action, but we don't go around colonising other countries like we did in the days of the Empire. People change, countries change. The sooner the reactionary types in the Far East realise that Japan isn't the warmonger it was the better.

  • 22

    roughneck

    The headlines should have said...9 Jobless Koreans tried to have some limelight and media coverage.

  • 13

    genjuro

    Disappointing. Again not up to par compared with previous demonstrations. Koreans can do better than this.

    http://www.who-sucks.com/people/the-exciting-world-of-south-korean-protests

  • -6

    noypikantoku

    Thunderbird2 - How sure are you that the current Japanese government won't go back to the 1930s and 1940s? Are you 100% sure about that? When new extreme right wingers like Hashimoto is starting to rise Again? That is why acknowledging these terrible acts from the past is important. To avoid it from Happening again, not to blame Japan. People change yeah, but People are also well known for repeating the history again.

  • 1

    Thunderbird2

    @noypikantoku - Hashimoto is a nutter, and is on the decline rather than the rise. He speaks for a minority of like-minded nutters. I am 100% convinced that Japan will not return to militarism.

    As for people repeating history... it would take a HUGE backwards leap for Japan to once again invade China or Korea. What would they gain from such an act of suicide, and it would be suicide.

  • 0

    gogogo

    Korean police just seem to be standing there taking it

  • -14

    Disillusioned

    Asia has kept some form of peace while Japan has been under the control of the constitution set up after Japan's defeat in WW2. Japan has been getting along quite well with the way the constitution is and I see no reason for it to be changed. The J-Gov is stating that it will allow Japanese troops to join other military offensives with its allies as a main point to win public support, but who are these alies they are referring to? The US? Japan was the aggressor in all the Asian conflict and I feel they should never again be given the right to attack another country without provocation. They way they have handled the comfort women issue and the territorial disputes tells me they are their own worst enemy. I can't blame the Koreans or any other one of the Asian nations that were sacked by the Japanese for feeling the way they do. They feel that, giving Japan back it's ability to attack without provocation is letting Japan off the hook for what they did to Asia in the first half of last century. However, us foreigners tend to forget that, all of Asia has been playing tit-for-tat for a few thousand years. Japan's imperial conquest last century was mostly in retaliation for the previous attempts at colonisation by the Chinese. People say that history never repeats, but it has been doing so in Asia for over a thousand years.

  • 1

    macman2014

    This is very difficult issue. Re-interpretating article 9 doesn't really mean that Japan wants to start a war, but it also means that Japan can start a war any time.

    The issue should be much discussed but in a calm stance. I think media are also responsible for telling accurate and consistant information to public.

    It is the best for Japan that we can be strong and brave to level with other countries WITHOUT using forces.

  • 10

    Wakarimasen

    Japan would NEVER invade Korea again. This type of nonsense is just them letting off steam.

  • 9

    Thunderbird2

    German forces can and have gone to war since they changed their constitution to allow for military action outside of Germany. I don't see the Bundeswehr marching into Poland again, or goose stepping down the streets of Paris, yet they have fought in the Balkans and Afghanistan as part of KFOR/IFOR and ISAF.

    I see no reason to think why the JGSDF would rampage across Korea or China. Modern Japan is not a reactionary country... the population are primarily pacifist and would not look kindly on such an adventure.

  • 0

    CGB Spender

    There's no love in your hwabyung! Put some more passion into it, Koreans!

  • 15

    commanteer

    If anything, the most likely sources of war are China and the Koreas. History doesn't exactly repeat itself, but it does rhyme. Having spent time in all 3 countries, Japan is far and away the most peaceful and tolerant.

  • -9

    noypikantoku

    Wakarimasen - it's not what you know, it's what you can prove. If we stop reminding Japan or any other nations about the lessons fo the history, then they will possibly repeat the history again.For now in this generation... yes they won't invade Korea, but in the future? you cannot assure that, you are just assuming. That's why the lessons of the history should be acknowledged.

  • 2

    Steven C. Schulz

    Even without the restraints of Article 9, it's not as if Japan will ever act independently. But should the worst happen, and a Pacific war break out, do you really think Japan will just stand silently while its allies fight to defend each other, and only act when it's the last one standing and surrounded? - No, who believes otherwise is a fool. This is simply legislating a fait accompli.

    First, given how difficult it has been to make even incremental changes without protest, it's clear that Japan's institutions are mature and healthy. Maybe the governments don't make everyone happy, but who's does? At can't see at any point that allowing collective self-defense will give the SDF the power to implement a coup or conduct assassinations, as was the case pre-WWII.

    And finally, from an American gaijin's point-of-view, even if everything perfectly lined up, and a coup did happen, do you think that the U.S. wouldn't intervene the very next second?

  • 2

    Garthgoyle

    korean dislike and hate us.

    Mr. Japan, there are good and bad apples everywhere. And the good ones outnumber the bad ones.

  • 6

    Thunderbird2

    @noypikantoku - just because Japanese people don't march and protest doesn't mean they don't care about those who are still suffering because of the 2011 disaster - you are another of those who seem to be of the opinion that because politicians act a certain way so do the rest of the people. All of the Japanese people I know are compassionate and kind. No I don't have any evidence to show you... I have faith in people. That's enough for me.

    The people in my country also had an empire. We conquered the world, oppressed nations and bent them to our will. Our navy ruled the waves and our flag flew in all corners of the globe. I am well aware of what was done in the name of the British Empire, the crimes committed. I am proud to be British... so does that mean I am likely to take up arms against a country because my ancestors did in the past? Do I secretly want to conquer Japan and that's why I invade it every year?

    Just because a country has committed vile acts in the past doesn't mean it will do it again.

  • 4

    Wakarimasen

    How Article 9 constitutes "learning the lessons of history" is beyond me. Fact is the leson of history Japan learned is that it gots its ass kicked - and that post the war it created a level of affluence and security for its people it cpould only have dreamed of before. That's why Japan will never invade Korea or China again. and that's why all of this hysteria by Koreans (and on other occasions Chinese) is so misplaced and frankly ludicrous.

  • -5

    boweevil

    Clearly an over reaction from Korea here..

    Having said that, under the current interpretation of the Constitution, Japan already has the right to defend itself.. It is hard to think of a reason why Japan wants what is essentially the right to wage war in another country. There really is no reason to fix what isn't broken...

    But there is no reason to assume the worst either. One wonders what will happen if the constitution is changed and Japan experiences its own Iraqs and Viet Nams in countries on the other side of the world, how that change will be received by the Japanese people, with their increasing debt and declining population.

    Also it paves the way for other constitutional changes that will directly effect the rights and civil liberties of the Jaoanese people, who really don't get the idea that a constitution is supposed to protect the people first and foremost from the excesses of their own government.

  • -5

    Steven C. Schulz

    @Thunderbird2

    Our navy ruled the waves and our flag flew in all corners of the globe. I am well aware of what was done in the name of the British Empire, the crimes committed.

    Mostly, I agree with you. However, I think on balance, the British Empire was the greatest force of good the world has ever seen. And this from an American!

  • -4

    noypikantoku

    Comanteer- History doesn’t repeat itself? How many dictators in this world who existed and ended up being executed for committing the same crimes as the others’ in which if they Studied the history properly they can avoid the same faith. It is too still early to say that Japan won’t do the same mistakes, WW2 ended only 70 years ago, that is still early. of course America is still in power and watching over Japan. But we cannot just assume that any country will not commit the same mistakes again (Not only Japan) that’s why reminders and acknowledgements are important. The problem with apologists liking Japan too much is they forget what really is good for the county that they love. It’s like an obssesed celebrity fan losing the grasp of reality.

    Wakarimasen - yes they learned that lesson that they're ass got kicked , so if they are not reminded again about it, and the people lived in those generation became extinct, are you sure that the history will not repeat again? again I am asking you to give me an evidence that they wont do those acts again, not just by your assumptions.

    Thunderbird - yes you are assuming that they will not do the same mistakes again, but again I am asking you, what is your evidence that Japan won't do the same mistake again? you said that "* Just because a country has committed vile acts in the past doesn't mean it will do it again.* But it is also possible that they will do their vile acts again... that's why they must acknowledge and they need to be reminded all over again.

  • 0

    zteano

    Funny, last time I checked, you don't have to initiate to go to war... and I thought that is why this topic is being debated.

  • -2

    FangWannasiri

    I don't know what's wrong with reforming the constitutional in Japan. People in Japan are living peacefully and it's not like Japan is going to declare war on South Korea anyway. I really hope the Anti-Korea Protesters won't just go after the Korea Embassy in Japan or have any intention on destroying any Korea's market like Samsung in Japan.

  • -11

    tmarie

    Hey Smith, hate Japan much?

    Interesting. I didn't see Smith comment that he did. What I read was a post of concern about the direction this country is headed. A concern I share - as do many others.

  • -9

    ReformedBasher

    Asia has kept some form of peace while Japan has been under the control of the constitution set up after Japan's defeat in WW2. Japan has been getting along quite well with the way the constitution is and I see no reason for it to be changed. The J-Gov is stating that it will allow Japanese troops to join other military offensives with its allies as a main point to win public support, but who are these alies they are referring to? The US? Japan was the aggressor in all the Asian conflict and I feel they should never again be given the right to attack another country without provocation. They way they have handled the comfort women issue and the territorial disputes tells me they are their own worst enemy. I can't blame the Koreans or any other one of the Asian nations that were sacked by the Japanese for feeling the way they do. They feel that, giving Japan back it's ability to attack without provocation is letting Japan off the hook for what they did to Asia in the first half of last century. However, us foreigners tend to forget that, all of Asia has been playing tit-for-tat for a few thousand years. Japan's imperial conquest last century was mostly in retaliation for the previous attempts at colonisation by the Chinese. Asia has kept some form of peace while Japan has been under the control of the constitution set up after Japan's defeat in WW2. Japan has been getting along quite well with the way the constitution is and I see no reason for it to be changed. The J-Gov is stating that it will allow Japanese troops to join other military offensives with its allies as a main point to win public support, but who are these alies they are referring to? The US? Japan was the aggressor in all the Asian conflict and I feel they should never again be given the right to attack another country without provocation. They way they have handled the comfort women issue and the territorial disputes tells me they are their own worst enemy. I can't blame the Koreans or any other one of the Asian nations that were sacked by the Japanese for feeling the way they do. They feel that, giving Japan back it's ability to attack without provocation is letting Japan off the hook for what they did to Asia in the first half of last century. However, us foreigners tend to forget that, all of Asia has been playing tit-for-tat for a few thousand years. Japan's imperial conquest last century was mostly in retaliation for the previous attempts at colonisation by the Chinese. People say that history never repeats, but it has been doing so in Asia for over a thousand years.

    I was not aware you could write such long sentences. Good effort.

    People say that history never repeats, but it has been doing so in Asia for over a thousand years.

    This might come as a shock but it's been the case on every continent with the exception of Antarctica, for much longer than a thousand years too. But I'm glad you are in history. Try reading more.

    A concern I share - as do many others.

    Fortunately countered by rational people.

  • 0

    Jimizo

    ' All of the Japanese people I know are compassionate and kind. No I don't have any evidence to show you...'

    Like yourself, I don't tend to associate with idiot rightwingers. The vast majority of Japanese people are compassionate and kind, but they are also among the most agreeable, docile and politically apathetic people I've ever encountered. I don't fear the Japanese public but I do fear where a government made up of traditionalists from an out of touch ruling class could take Japan without too much meaningful opposition from that public. The biggest fear for me is one of the things Japan, Korea and China have in common - they tend to swallow what the media feeds them more than most and it doesn't take too much to get the peoples of these countries to hate each other.

  • 2

    OssanAmerica

    These protesters are really just plain stupid people. Or they are supporters of North Korea, which happens to get off on killing South Koreans every now and then, or support Chinese dominance of Asia, again pretty stupid. Everything that Japan is doing is welcomed by the United States and Australia as well as other Asian nations. Collective defense on the part of Japan can only potentially help South Korea. Or do these people not realize that their own country as well as Japan have defense alliances with the United States?
    Japan is a country that was abnormally limited in military activity for 70 years and only now moving towards becoming "normal". China on the other hand was a peaceful country that has become and continues to become militarist. South Koreans keep it up and you can be assured that if and wen South Korea's existence is pout on the line, Japan will refuse to help. In fact I wouldn't be surprised if hey prohibited the use of US assets based in Japan if in support of South Korea.

  • -15

    smithinjapan

    Thunderbird: "Hey Smith, hate Japan much?"

    Nope, not one bit. What I do dislike, though, is the way Japan is heading under leaders like Abe and with people being far too apathetic leading up to said destination. What I also dislike is people saying things like, "Koreans hate us!", etc., when they are protesting the VERY same things the majority of Japanese don't want (but don't protest as much).

    "So is this a protest against Abe's desire for Japan to be able to take offensive military action as well as defensive? What are they afraid of?"

    Put lipstick on a pig and its still a pig. Let's take a moment to digest this violent response in front of the embassy. Why did it happen? Because Abe wants to renounce article 9 and put Japan back on a path to militancy -- a nation that should get a Nobel Peace Prize for its current war renouncing constitution. Abe wants to change that, and you have a violent response. So tell me, is renouncing article 9 bringing about peace, or more danger, to the nation? And before any of you haters bash SK for this, don't forget that, again, most Japanese agree the constitution should NOT be changed. They are working in your interests!

  • -4

    Vincehwr

    There surely is a better way to communicate a disagreement. I'm disappointed once again Korea is ever so enthusiastic for picketing and riots. No matter how right they are, I wish they'd find a better way to express their rage.

    And as if SKorea doesn't know about NKorea threat. They have been at each other's throat for fifty years to see through the bluffs. They probably wouldn't want to ask Japan for help in dealing with their own problem for many reasons. If they feel like dealing with NKorea, they would've called US because there already is a history of mutual relations.

  • 3

    Thunderbird2

    @noypikantoku

    Thunderbird - yes you are assuming that they will not do the same mistakes again, but again I am asking you, what is your evidence that Japan won't do the same mistake again? you said that "* Just because a country has committed vile acts in the past doesn't mean it will do it again.* But it is also possible that they will do their vile acts again... that's why they must acknowledge and they need to be reminded all over again.

    Let me get this straight... you want every generation of Japanese, from now until the end of time, to be kicked up the arse all the time... just in case they turn into a warmonger state? Are you serious? You also say 70 years isn't enough time to say they won't return to the military days... in your opinion what WOULD be long enough? 200 years? A thousand?

  • 1

    Novenachama

    I can understand why some citizens of South Korea would be worried and are protesting. After all many neighboring countries were subject to Japanese aggression and colonization before its defeat in 1945. Many fear it could be a re-emergence of the militarist past. Much of Asia holds bitter memories of Japanese invasions during the first half of the 20th century. However advocates of reform would want Japan to become a normal country that has a military and does not need to jump through constitutional loopholes to join peacekeeping efforts. Also besides the controversial proposal to modify Article Nine, there has been the international push for Japan to take a greater role in world affairs. Most Japanese would want revisions to end the ambiguities about the military's role so Japan can come to the aid of allies instead of getting criticized for only contributing money in the past. In the end opponents to Japan's constitutional reform changes fear the possibility of a nationalist sentiment. On the other hand reform advocates would discount that thinking and say that they only want a constitution that better reflects modern Japan.

  • 10

    Thunderbird2

    Smith...

    Put lipstick on a pig and its still a pig. Let's take a moment to digest this violent response in front of the embassy. Why did it happen? Because Abe wants to renounce article 9 and put Japan back on a path to militancy -- a nation that should get a Nobel Peace Prize for its current war renouncing constitution. Abe wants to change that, and you have a violent response. So tell me, is renouncing article 9 bringing about peace, or more danger, to the nation? And before any of you haters bash SK for this, don't forget that, again, most Japanese agree the constitution should NOT be changed. They are working in your interests!

    So you're saying a leopard doesn't change its spots, and if they renounce Article 9 then the slide to Imperial Militarism is unavoidable? You are as reactionary as the protestors. Just because a country can come to the aid of its allies doesn't mean that the same country will wage war against it neighbours because it did so in the past. Look at NATO... former WW2 and Cold War enemies now allies who support each other.

    Japan dropping Article 9 is like a flea bite compared to what the Chinese are doing. What do they have to fear from Japan? Nothing. What do they have to fear from China? Everything. Under Article 9 if China was to attack SK Japan could not intervene. With the Article removed Japan could come to their defence.

  • 7

    presto345

    Bitterness still runs deep in the Korean nation. There are many who are incapable of forgiveness. I doubt there is any consensus on settling the debts once and for all. I also doubt most Japanese agree the constitution should not be changed. Japan will have to take a stand against clearly looming aggressors. "Put Japan back on a path to militancy" : total BS.

  • -6

    Tohka

    The biggest fear for me is one of the things Japan, Korea and China have in common - they tend to swallow what the media feeds them more than most and it doesn't take too much to get the peoples of these countries to hate each other.

    ^^^ This, a billion times over

  • 1

    zichi

    Just another part of the Japanese-Korean game of tit-for-tat, a normal day in the region. Without all the ping pongs what would the media of this arena have to report on?

  • 4

    Nenad Jovanović

    Another Korean propaganda show, the only country in the Asia , together with China , that act as scared of Japan regaining full military power , I really cant believe that country as Korea exist on this planet, so full of manipulating people, incredible country .

  • 8

    hidingout

    I guess it takes Koreans to do something against what the majority of Japanese don't want but just shrug and say, "Shou ga nai, ne" instead.

    No need to pretend that the "majority" of which you speak is in any way clear or decisive. I have seen polls (such as the one done by the Asahi Shimbun) in which the blind pacifists only outnumbered those with common sense by 44% to 42%. Which I guess would mean that only 14% are in the *shou ga nai, ne" camp you mention - comparable to the voter apathy seen in any western democracy. But don't let that fact get in the way of a good Japan bashfest eh Smith?

    Its clear to anyone with eyes that the constitution needs to be altered. How ridiculous is it to expect the Americans to come to the defense of Japan while Japan is legally prohibited from even shooting down a missile that targets its American allies? If we all lived in Candyland things might be different. But sadly we live in direct proximity to one of the most heavily militarized and belligerent nations on Earth (and two of its lapdogs). Mr Abe would be derelict in his duties if he didn't at least investigate the issue of altering the constitution.

    As for the ROK protestors .... I must say its been nice the last few months to hear the sound of silence on the usual topics as Koreans are occupied with taking their own corrupt government to task on an array of issues. Would that they stick to dealing with their own troubles and leave Japan to handle her business.

    I will say that its very telling how differently ROK treats Japanese governmental offices compared with the way Japan handles the offices of ROK and PRC. Unfortunately for me I happen to live in proximity to a ROK consulate. That place is guarded better than Fort Knox. Every street that feeds into the area has armed prefectural police manning spike belts on the corners. There is no way any "protest" minded individual, never mind a group, could get within a block of the ROK consulate. But in ROK they erect statues right in front of the main Japanese Embassy, and have all manner of nutters carrying on at will practically on the doorstep.

    I guess that proves once again which party is the civilized one.

  • -3

    toshiko

    @smithinjapanJUN. 19, 2014 - 03:42PM JST I guess it takes Koreans to do something against what the majority of Japanese don't want but just shrug and say,

    ;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;

    It seems that current Japanese people do not know during WW II, all males, from boys as young as 13 yrs old to 50 years old were drafted to combat zone with slogan of "Ichioku Gyokusu Tenno-ka no tameni". They think think they are safe and only youngsters will go to war, Korean people did favor for middle age Japanese men. No, you just write your analysis.

  • 0

    tinawatanabe

    SK only wants to keep bullying Japan carefree to their hearts' content with the same pacifist constition of Japan.

  • -14

    smithinjapan

    Thunderbird: "So you're saying a leopard doesn't change its spots, and if they renounce Article 9 then the slide to Imperial Militarism is unavoidable?"

    With people like Abe at the helm, a proud and self-proclaimed history revisionist and war hawk, yes. I don't think that all Japanese who want the article to be amended think so, but it should simply not be amended. It is one of the things that makes Japan great, and makes the nation a true leader in the search for peace.

    "You are as reactionary as the protestors."

    CONCERNED as the protesters, yes, but not quite as reactionary. That said, you saying Japan renouncing article 9 is a 'flea bite compared to what China is doing' indicates you want to emulate their actions. You want to be more like China to counter China? or wait... is it 'different' because it's Japan?

    hidingout: "I guess that proves once again which party is the civilized one."

    That kind of attitude proves precisely why you're wrong. As for stating the indifference in an Asahi Shimbun poll, a rag known for kow-towing to the government, what, were a whopping 1000 people polled by phone? And the 'indifference' proves exactly what I said -- apathy. I've met ONE Japanese person who said Abe needs to change Article 9 and Japan needs to attack China -- and yes, he said attack. He wears sunglasses in the day time, is a fat, old man, and drives a black truck with slogans of Imperial Japan written all over it. THESE are the people who are definitive about the desire for change, and the reason why people with any common sense are concerned and/or protesting.

  • -7

    jerseyboy

    These protesters are really just plain stupid people. Or they are supporters of North Korea, which happens to get off on killing South Koreans every now and then, or support Chinese dominance of Asia, again pretty stupid. Everything that Japan is doing is welcomed by the United States and Australia as well as other Asian nations.

    Ossan -- as usual, a statement of fact which is simply your knee-jerk opinion. First off, these folks are not "just plain stupid people" in having sincere doubts about Japan's intentions, stability, and sincerity to act in a truly peaceful mode. Japan has had more PM's/governments in the past decade than you can count on one hand. Who is to say when Abe fails that a much more reactionary government might come in? Unfortunately for Japan, these folks have access to the Internet and can read the silly things Hashimoto and his type say. Second,you are conveniently forgetting that Japan is locked in territorial disputes with SK. So a more assertive Japan is surely not in their best interest. Finally, not everything Japan is doing is "welcomed" by the U.S., and you know it. Obama has told Abe to stop creating problems with SK by doing things like raising the comfort women issue and sending a tribute to Yasakuni. And why do you think that is? That's right, because he sees the big picture, and knows that Japan's increased militarism has to be based on a strong sense of trust among its Asian neighbors. But Abe has ignored his advice, and this is the result.

  • -6

    Jimizo

    'It seems that current Japanese people do not know during WW II, all males, from boys as young as 13 yrs old to 50 years old were drafted to combat zone with slogan of "Ichioku Gyokusu Tenno-ka no tameni". They think think they are safe and only youngsters will go to war, Korean people did favor for middle age Japanese men. No, you just write your analysis. Not Japan hater.'

    Top drawer post. The reflexive anti-Korea/ China reactions are very disturbing. I've met many Japanese people who are concerned about either the apathy of the public or a 'we hate Korea/China because they hate us' stupidity. Like their very similar neighbours, many Japanese aren't adept at self-reflection or self-criticism.

  • -7

    Disillusioned

    Wow! So much negativity and blind support! I'm with Smith and Zichi on this one. The Koreans have overreacted, but you can't blame them cos of the right-wing political fools running this country.

  • -5

    yabits

    Because Abe wants to renounce article 9 and put Japan back on a path to militancy -- a nation that should get a Nobel Peace Prize for its current war renouncing constitution. Abe wants to change that, and you have a violent response.

    Yes!

    So you're saying a leopard doesn't change its spots, and if they renounce Article 9 then the slide to Imperial Militarism is unavoidable?

    No. Japan's renunciation of war should give it a tremendous advantage. Japan should be a trusted broker that other nations look to to help resolve conflicts. The ones within Japan who are trying somehow to recover a "glorious past" are neglecting the opportunity its constitution has made possible. They see everyone else going militaristic and, instead of sticking to its own unique way of nearly pure self-defense, wants to join in. Where are the truly wise men and women of Japan? (Coz' it sure ain't Abe and his ilk.)

  • 4

    OssanAmerica

    jerseyboyJun. 19, 2014 - 10:50PM JST Ossan -- as usual, a statement of fact which is simply your knee-jerk opinion

    jerseyboy please refrain from your usual personal comments. The United States, Australia. nearly all of Asia, EU all support Japan's moves toward collective defense and a return to "normal" military status. This includes the majority of countries which fought or were invaded by Imperial Japan in WWII. Korea was part of the Japanese Empire from 1910-1945 and they were never "invaded". Some 240,000 Korean men served in the Imperial Japanese military and they were invading other Asian nations and fighting the allied powers. Through a systematic and state level whitewashing of history, South Koreans are under the misimpression that they were either on the victorious "allies" side or they were brutally invaded like China, Philippines, etc. The sheer hypocrisy of South Koreans suggesting a Japanese "return to WWII militarism" is astounding. It doesn't take much research to reach this conclusion provided one is not biased to start with.

  • 4

    SamuraiBlue

    Put lipstick on a pig and its still a pig.

    Yup pretty much so, look at the Koreans who have dug a hole deep in social distress not learning from history. The Korean government is a joke mirroring various mistakes that Joseon had done more then a hundred years ago and they still do not understand what kind of mistake they are making.

  • -5

    toshiko

    Collective Defense = Drafting Japanese males to go to combat zone. Male workers are so short that Govt.already suggested to business to employ more women, Maybe Domestic Opposition Party of Abe's wife will govern Japan??? Japan might be a only female majority country in developed nations.

  • 2

    hidingout

    @Toshiko - in quoting a slogan from eighty years ago are you suggesting that there are any Japanese people living in the 21st century who worship the Emperor? Thats almost as ridiculous as attempting to equate a modification of the constitution (to allow Japan the same military freedoms that every other nation on the planet enjoys) with a return to drafting 13 year old boys. Talk about fear mongering.

    @ smith - care to explain why 'that attitude proves precisely why Im wrong' or are you just going to continue posting your opinions a fact?

    Its interesting to hear of your experiences canvassing your acquaintances on this matter. And by interesting I mean uhh ... As for me, I have yet to meet a single Japanese citizen who wishes to keep Article 9 in its current form.

  • 3

    virgo98

    Their fear of Japanese invasion to their country is nothing but ridiculous. Because Japanese people's wish now is to distance from Korea and Korean people as much as posiible. I'm afraid that they have not realized their country is not worth invading for Japan to take such a risk of war. Actually, it would brew up another plague, We have learnt from the history.

    They should be afraid of Japanese indifference to them more.

  • -3

    yabits

    The United States, Australia. nearly all of Asia, EU all support Japan's moves toward collective defense and a return to "normal" military status.

    In a time when preemptive attacks and one-percent doctrines are increasingly becoming the norm, it is insanity to dupe one's self into thinking that things military are "normal."

    I have very little trust or faith in the ruling elites of the U.S. et.al. drawing in Japan to become more like them.

  • -2

    isoducky

    Funny thing looking the picture of the day on Japantoday. The only thing that might be Japanese is the background.

  • -7

    tokyodoumo

    When you have a nation like Japan that is arrogantly indifferent to the pain and suffering it has caused to Korean people for over 50 yrs of colonial rule, who can blame their anger and frustrations especially when Japan anounces to enhance it's military authorities.. Why would Japan want to amend it's constitution now unless it is seeking to get involved into war mongering once again...

  • 1

    toshiko

    @isoduckyJUN. 20, 2014 - 02:11AM JST Funny thing looking the picture of the day on Japantoday. The only thing that might be Japanese is the background.

    ;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;

    You noticed ! The background building is Japanese Embassy in Seoul. The demonstrators and police must be Koreans. in Seoul.

  • -1

    JTDanMan

    Once again, evidence that nationalism tends to make people blinkered fools.

  • 3

    Shumatsu_Samurai

    smith, most Koreans and Chinese might not like this.

    But strangely enough there aren't (significant) complaints from other Asian countries. If anything, they're hopeful the reforms will pass and Japan can become a bit more of a counter-weight to China. Outside of Asia I think most countries that care would also like the reforms to pass.

    At the end of the day, the people most upset are those that continue to dwell in the past.

  • 3

    OssanAmerica

    yabitsJun. 20, 2014 - 01:58AM JST "The United States, Australia. nearly all of Asia, EU all support Japan's moves toward collective defense and a return to "normal" military status." In a time when preemptive attacks and one-percent doctrines are increasingly becoming the norm, it is insanity to >dupe one's self into thinking that things military are "normal." I have very little trust or faith in the ruling elites of the U.S. et.al. drawing in Japan to become more like them.

    The US et al have nothing to do with it. China did all by itself.

  • -2

    scipantheist

    I guess it takes Koreans to do something against what the majority of Japanese don't want but just shrug and say, "Shou ga nai, ne" instead. Get MORE people out there, and get them out in front of all Japanese government buildings. Have them constantly bring up the issue of sex-slaves and Nanjing and the atomic bombings. Have them bring up Fukushima. Embarrass them on the world stage -- that is the only way Japan listens... well... for a little while anyway.

    This is a post concerned for Japan rather than wanting to see its name tarnished on the world stage? Not in my interpretation.

  • -6

    jerseyboy

    jerseyboy please refrain from your usual personal comments. The United States, Australia. nearly all of Asia, EU all support Japan's moves toward collective defense and a return to "normal" military status.

    Ossan -- actually my post does not in any way comment on you -- simply your "knee-jerk reaction opinion". And, as usual, you have not responded to my post in any substantive way. All you have done is re-post your original opinion as fact. And we both know what you say is simply not true. To start with China and SK do not "support Japan's moves towards collective defense", and they are the two biggest Asian players. So please, provide some concrete references to your assertion about "nearly all of Asia". Otherwise, it is just opinion/wishful thinking.

    • Moderator

      No bickering please.

  • 2

    JoeBigs

    Protesters struggle with police officers during a rally against Japan’s plan to reform its constitution in front of the Japanese Embassy in Seoul, South Korea, on Thursday.

    Look at the officer's expression, what do you think is going through his mind at that very moment? The guy looks bored stiff....

    ARTICLE 9. Aspiring sincerely to an international peace based on justice and order, the Japanese people forever renounce war as a sovereign right of the nation and the threat or use of force as means of settling international disputes. (2) To accomplish the aim of the preceding paragraph, land, sea, and air forces, as well as other war potential, will never be maintained. The right of belligerency of the state will not be recognized.

    An outdated article that was pushed on Japan by the allies but not on the Germany, Italy or the rest of the Axis nations. The only folks who want to continue this farce are Communist China, Communist in Japan, misguided Socialist and folks who live in a fantasy.

    A peaceful world would be a grand thing, but the only way to achieve this would be if every nation would adopt an Article 9 into their Constitutions. Whoever actually believes that any nation today would do that please stand up.

    The belief that the world and the people that live in it will laydown their arms and accept peace anytime soon is a childish fantasy.

    It is high time that Japan took it's rightful place as a modern nation with the ability to defend itself and it's interests without any limitations. Japan has every right to defend it's interests as much as any other nation.

    Sir_EdgarJun. 20, 2014 - 05:12AM JST Judging from the highly nationalist, even colonialist, comments here that sound just like those made over 100 years ago, it looks like not much has changed the basic mentality of Japanese people.

    Could you please point some of these comments you deem to be equal to the comments made by Japanese people 100 years ago? Next, could you please provide a link where we all can read these old comments made 100 years ago.

    Would love to read them.

    Shumatsu_SamuraiJun. 20, 2014 - 04:01AM JST smith, most Koreans and Chinese might not like this. But strangely enough there aren't (significant) complaints from other Asian countries. If anything, they're hopeful the reforms will pass and Japan can become a bit more of a counter-weight to China.

    Nailed it! Well said.

    Only three nations don't want Japan's military to have the same ability as that Germany and Italy have.

    yabitsJun. 20, 2014 - 01:58AM JST In a time when preemptive attacks and one-percent doctrines are increasingly becoming the norm, it is insanity to dupe one's self into thinking that things military are "normal."

    And you trust Communist China's elites to not take advantage of the present situation and attack Japan?

    http://thediplomat.com/2014/02/chinas-military-trains-for-war-against-japan/ http://www.businessinsider.com/china-japan-conflict-could-lead-to-war-2014-1

    yabitsJun. 20, 2014 - 01:58AM JST I have very little trust or faith in the ruling elites of the U.S. et.al. drawing in Japan to become more like them.

    The best defense is a strong offense. China will think twice before trying to invade Japan if it knows that attacking it will lead to a greater and much more costly war.

    tokyodoumoJun. 20, 2014 - 02:23AM JST When you have a nation like Japan that is arrogantly indifferent to the pain and suffering

    In other words Japan hasn't paid enough or apologized enough, got it.

    smithinjapanJun. 19, 2014 - 07:54PM JST Nope, not one bit. What I do dislike, though, is the way Japan is heading under leaders like Abe and with people being far too apathetic leading up to said destination.

    Smith, imagine if Communist China, Communist North Korea and South Korea would be peaceful neighbors. Do you think that your so-called hawks would have a reason to revise Article 9? Of course no Smith.

    If Japan's neighbors weren't threatening Japan's people and interests Japan would never think of changing it's Constitution. But, they are and Japan must.

    Communist China has claimed 90% of the South China Sea, just about all of the East China Sea, they have claimed Okinawa and have threatened to invade the Senkaku Islands.

    http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2014/04/08/chinamightactuallyseizejapanssouthernislands http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/may/15/china-okinawa-dispute-japan-ryukyu http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/14/world/asia/sentiment-builds-in-china-to-press-claim-for-okinawa.html?pagewanted=all&r=0

    North Korea threatens Japan with nuclear and conventional strikes.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=newsarchive&sid=aoXwM34Au.xI

    South Korea views insanely view Japan as more of a threat than Communist North Korea.

    http://www.the-american-interest.com/blog/2013/11/03/62-of-south-koreans-view-japan-as-credible-military-threat/

    Smith, you maybe blinded by your dislike of Japan, but you can't deny that Japan isn't trying to resolve these rows. But, like it takes two to tangle and Japan is the only dancer still on the floor.

  • 5

    JpMossMan

    Or...stop telling another country how to govern themselves. Last I checked, Japan doesn't need permission from Korea to make decisions about Japan's laws. Pretty sure they're still separate countries.

  • -5

    yabits

    And you trust Communist China's elites to not take advantage of the present situation and attack Japan?

    China might move to take the disputed islands (Senkaku/Daioyu), but they would never, ever attack Japan.

    Ever.

  • 2

    Steven C. Schulz

    China might move to take the disputed islands (Senkaku/Daioyu), but they would never, ever attack Japan. Ever.

    Um, that is "attacking" Japan. No less than Argentina seizing Falklands was attacking Britain.

  • -4

    yabits

    Um, that is "attacking" Japan. No less than Argentina seizing Falklands was attacking Britain.

    Um, quite a bit less, but thanks for playing.

  • 2

    scipantheist

    For many of us here, seizing the Senkakus or Ryukyu Islands is just as bad as any attack on Japan. Most likely Japan will meet it with the highest force possible. Hope you are prepared for losing major cities and thank you for playing.

  • -6

    tmarie

    Good to see the government workers are hard at work thumbing down posts that question the government and thumbing up anything that supports Abe and his clowns.

  • -1

    JoeBigs

    tmarieJun. 20, 2014 - 06:09PM JST Good to see the government workers are hard at work thumbing down posts that question the government and thumbing up anything that supports Abe and his clowns.

    You actually believe that Japan's government workers are thumbing down your posts, tmarie? Paranoia is an awful place to live in..

    Japanese government workers don't have time to worry what you have to say. Japan isn't like Communist China, Japan doesn't pay their employees to make posts. Japanese workers have more important things to do than get paid 50 cents per post.

    Tmarie, let me help you out again and this time I will use someone else's words.

    You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life. Winston Churchill

    Folks might not like what I have to say, but they can't refute it with facts.

    Live by your own words tmarie, stop looking for approval from others when you know you are right.

  • -2

    souka

    good to c this protest going on in s/korea...i don't know the exact feeling of japanese pple, judging from the status of comments here, looks like ordinary japanese don't support such efforts to block or give second-thoughts to politicians before changing the constitution..of course, no-one hates japan, just the anxiety, the fear of what would happen next if the constitution actually changes..with leaders trying to revise history, saying d-day is just another example of comfort women, with modern military hardwares japan have, etc., then i think maybe leaders needs to be given some hard-time to rethink what might be the consequences of going forward with touching article 9.

  • 1

    OssanAmerica

    jerseyboyJun. 20, 2014 - 06:08AM JST "jerseyboy please refrain from your usual personal comments. The United States, Australia. nearly all of Asia, EU all support Japan's moves toward collective defense and a return to "normal" military status."

    Ossan -- actually my post does not in any way comment on you -- simply your "knee-jerk reaction opinion".

    My statements are neither opinion nor "knee-jerk". All one has to do is read a number of news sources on the subject to verify that.

    And, as usual, you have not responded to my post in any substantive way. All you have done is re-post your original >opinion as fact.

    It is a fact. Check around the wen news sites on your own.

    And we both know what you say is simply not true. To start with China and SK do not "support Japan's moves >towards collective defense", and they are the two biggest Asian players. So please, provide some concrete references >to your assertion about "nearly all of Asia". Otherwise, it is just opinion/wishful thinking.

    China and South Korea are the only countries objecting. North Korea too but nobody cares what they say. All other Asian nations support Japan. It doesn't get any more "concrete" than that. Again read the news instead of just arguing what's not arguable. Please stop replying to my posts just or the sake of arguing.

  • -3

    tmarie

    Joe, plenty of government workings sit around with their thumbs up their bum all day and are known to troll websites while at work. There have been comments on here in the past about government workers on here - I have a friend who is one and has commented on this website so...

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