Japanese Man Self-Immolates In Protest of PM Abe’s Plans for Military Expansion, Japanese Media Ignores It Completely

man-shinjuku-self-immolate-burn-death-suicide-protest-collective-self-defense-3“Free media” my entire ass.  I walked into work here in Tokyo and neither the Danish fella I work with nor his Japanese wife had heard anything about a man self-immolating in downtown Tokyo,  despite it happening in the middle of the day at Shinjuku Station, possibly the busiest train station in the world.  This is likely because not a single major Japanese news service covered it at all.

Prime Minister Abe’s plan to revise Article 9 of the Japanese constitution, which limits their military actions to a non-aggressive, purely defensive philosophy, is not really a new thing.  In the past, both the UN and the US have requested that Japan get themselves a “real” army (apparently the highest military budget in Asia doesn’t give you a “real” army), but massive protests from the populace have killed any efforts to do so.

There also hasn’t been any mention of the massive protests currently happening in the city yet.  With this concentrated effort to keep the populace ignorant of unrest and opposition to the government’s unpopular plans for war, I’m starting to get homesick for the US.



Tuna Ghost lives in Tokyo and has been a contributor to Japan Times and Kansai Scene.Follow him on twitter (@Tuna_Ghost) to read about US politics, the underground Tokyo metal scene, and which brands of 7-11 wine will make you fight like a homeless werewolf prostitute.  

8 Comments on "Japanese Man Self-Immolates In Protest of PM Abe’s Plans for Military Expansion, Japanese Media Ignores It Completely"

  1. BuzzCoastin | Jul 1, 2014 at 5:29 pm |

    Uncle Homeland’s main colony in Asia
    a place with even more Homeland ships than China’s navy
    and more Homeland military personnel than militarily occupied Hawai’i

    Japan is willing to do whatever Uncle Homey demands
    including buy more Homeland weapons
    and ignoring any objections from the way too sheeplish Japanese
    even though Japan has an even worse record of military abuses
    than its overlord Uncle Homeland

  2. Rhoid Rager | Jul 1, 2014 at 7:22 pm |

    These are the only two mainstream sites that report on it. Reading some of the comments on blogs that have written on it, people aren’t seeing this on the news at all. Actors and politicians have actually come out and criticized it as being a burden on the good consumers and commuters in Shinjuku station, and that it was a foolish act. The guy survived and is now under investigation for having committed a crime.
    I swear this country is living in laa-laa land.


    • Jin The Ninja | Jul 2, 2014 at 12:30 pm |

      well we can partially thank mcarthur for that. but as you know capitalism wins against logic and compassion.

  3. Love the country and many aspects of the people and culture; really don’t like the largely unthinking subservience to authority. :-/

    Glad to hear that protests are happening though: I’m guessing social media is filling the communication gaps to some degree, at least.

    • Anarchy Pony | Jul 1, 2014 at 7:44 pm |

      Anti authoritarianism gets stamped right the fuck out in Japan. The history of Japanese anarchism is brutal.

      • Rhoid Rager | Jul 2, 2014 at 9:31 am |

        Japanese historians refer to that with no hint of irony as ‘Taisho Democracy’

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