Do you call Taro Yamamoto a terrorist?
Translated from Japanese by Hanna Kazahari
For those who thought Taro Yamamoto left the voting session of “Resolution condemning terrorism” because he is a terrorist.
I will describe the reason why, instead of voting for or against the resolution I left during the Upper House voting session.
Please familiarize yourself with my reasons (described below) before you conclude if I am a terrorist.
To begin with please have a look at the content of the resolution.
Some of you may think there is no problem with it.
Indeed, until the 6th row it is so, and Taro Yamamoto agrees with you.
It is obvious that we condemn kidnapping and killing.
Among all lawmakers gathered there was however one proposal from Taro Yamamoto to correct the wordings and fix the resolution.
In principle the decision to amend or fix the resolution lies within the Director of the Committee on Rules and Administration, it is not something one lawmaker can do, although I strongly felt that it is not enough to say „we do not buckle” or „we condemn” to deter terrorism in the country. We, the lawmakers should do better than that, since we are entrusted with the task of creating laws which will really ensure the safety of Japanese nationals overseas.
My proposal was as follows
- Verification of this incident, including summary of Iraq war
- Express gratitude to the countries which supported Japan, without mentioning specific countries
- Prepare English translation of the Resolution
Let me explain here my point of view.
Firstly, we need to collect and verify the details of this incident, before we can discuss it in the political arena.
Where the government actions adequate from the announcement of the kidnapping until the beheading video came out?
From restraint to murder – what actions were undertaken and what judgement was made by the persons and organizations responsible for crisis management?
From engaging in general elections inspite of having the knowledge of the hostage situation, to Prime Minister’s visit to the Middle East and escalating the crisis with his speech, there were actions we need to investigate and judge if they were appropriate.
The officials responsible for providing the explanation need to establish facts without escaping under the cover of Special Secrecy Law.
In addition, we should receive the information not only about the recent accident, but also the summary of Japanese involvement in the Iraq war.
We need to understand that IS which caused recent incident grew to the power also because of our country involvement and we share the responsibility.
In 2003, the president of the USA announced
“There are weapons of mass destruction in Iraq”
“We take the military action”
and after the 3 hours, the Japanese government quickly expressed Japan’s support.
And what did we learn after joining the coalition against Iraq and we destroyed this country?
“Weapons of mass destruction did not exist.”
The war was started based on false accusations, deprived the people of sovereignty, and destroyed the country.
With the support of Japan and other countries.
It has been nearly 10 years since Japan withdrew the Self-Defense Forces from Iraq, but both Japanese politicians and the public did not pay much attention to the problem.
I am one of them.
Iraq’s domestic security fell from bad to worse
Shiite militia routinely performs massacres of the Sunni, close to the ethnic cleansing.
I have heard IS was born from that.
Peaceful demonstrations of Sunni residents in Fallujah against the Maliki government and discrimination of Sunni turn violent after some protesters were shot dead and the protests have also drawn huge crowds in towns and cities across the Sunni provinces.
The international community ignored the accident and no media stood up to report this issue.
Recent accident is not just simply the case of two Japanese who happened to step into the dangerous area.
It is a case of a country condemned as “possessing weapons of mass destruction” and destroyed inspite of the fact that “no weapons of mass destruction could be found”.
As a result the region domestic stability was destroyed and fell into a dangerous state.
The instability caused by the Iraq war spawned IS so to fully understand the situation it would be better to include the summary of the related events.
It is important to express our gratitude towards all engaged in supporting us.
However, it is better to avoid mentioning of a particular country.
Jordan was mentioned in the Resolution statement, but it is also a country which carries out the airstrikes against IS.
It is a risk to mention in the acknowledgements a country involved in military attacks.
Can we prevent the lawmakers, who receive the public trust, unite with the Coalition of the Willing under the slogan „we will not bend” or „we will not allow”?
If we do not distance ourselves from the Coalition of the Willing countries involved in the direct military conflict in the Middle East, Japan is more likely to be the target of terrorism.
The message from the Prime Minister to the world will depend on English translation.
So far we have experienced that the message intended by the Prime Minister and expressed in Japanese was not the same as its English translation which reached out to the world and it could be the root of the recent accident as well.
To prevent any misinterpretation of the resolution I have proposed to arrange for its proper and adequate English translation.
None of the three suggestions I presented at the Upper House session were taken into account.
In the position where, due to our own actions, we already created a dangerous situation for the people of our country, I realized that we may once more endanger the situation of Japanese overseas.
That was the reason I decided to leave in the middle of the voting session.
Finally, as a member of political faction (The People’s Life Party & Taro Yamamoto and Friends) I was the only one who left.
To those whose imagination makes them jump to a conclusion that it may be a political breakout – please, do not worry. At our party conference it was decided that one person, without restraint, is allowed a different opinion. This rule was widely discussed from the beginning by Ichiro Ozawa during consultation with all members.