The various dramas occurring today near Henoko beach, Okinawa, and the city of Ferguson, Missouri, undoubtedly have many points of difference, but it is worth reflecting briefly on some issues that unite these two cases.
A group of Japanese and foreign activists and concerned citizens staged a “die-in” in Tokyo’s Yoyogi Park today to bring attention to the plight of the Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip. This event is the latest in a series of related protests that have occurred in the Japanese capital since Israel launched “Operation Protective Edge,” a military campaign that took the lives of almost 2,000 Palestinians and injured more than 10,000 people, mostly civilians.
Almost seventy years after the guns fell silent, the Second World War remains very much present in the media, with frequent reminders of the human cost of the conflict. In the case of Japan this includes the fate of the soldiers and civilians captured in the closing days of the war, when the Soviet Union declared war and quickly overran Manchuria.