The Real News: “Japan Grapples with the Rise of Hate Groups” (video)


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Hi Blog. Interesting report sent to me by Reader D. Eleven minutes of video on the Zaitokukai, the Rise of Hate Groups in Japan, and the tensions between Right, Left, and “Foreign” in Japan’s public debates. Very much worth a viewing. Courtesy of The Real News Network (

Published on Sep 8, 2013
Tensions in East Asia are putting stress on Japanese society as rightwing activists begin to target resident Koreans. This has led to some politicians calling for legislative action against “hate speech”

Arudou Debito

10 comments on “The Real News: “Japan Grapples with the Rise of Hate Groups” (video)

  • Having watched this video, I’m actually less concerned than I was before. When you look at the people who are marching, you couldn’t find a bigger collection of losers. Unlike with the nazis, I have no sense that behind the thuggish public face of these people (and actually more wimpish/pathetic than thuggish) is a hidden controlling group of clever, evil beings. The foregoing comment doesn’t mean that Abe et al shouldn’t condemn them in the strongest way; I just think that to ridicule them would be more effective.

  • @ Yonago999 #2

    Having watched the video, I’m actually more concerned than I was before. When you look at the people who are marching, they are absolutely ordinary. They aren’t the young unemployed disenfranchised youth who don’t understand fully what they are marching for, nor are they all old timers viewing the empire through rose tinted spectacles. They are absolutely average looking people, like the man behind you in the line at the cash register, the man sitting next to you an the train, the woman working in the conbini. They are regular looking people, and maybe therefore, they are regular people!
    It would be comforting to know that they were ‘stand out in a crowd nut-job social losers with a chip on their shoulder, but in no way representative of the majority’, but the video doesn’t show that to be the case. That’s why it’s frightening; these racists are normal citizens of Japan, and their way of thinking might appeal to, and be held by, far more people than join the marches.

  • I agree wholeheartedly with DK above. This is the kind of thing which was documented by me, at least, and others I am sure, to the IOC prior to their recent decision. This kind of video is what should be made widely known, at least as much as that ‘Cool Japan’ show I see wherever I go on hotel cable TV. It’s like those images around the fingerprinting machine cameras at the airports, geisha – Fuji with snow against a blue sky with the shinkansen in front of it and, of course, the ubiquitous sakura trees, because only Japan has four seasons, you know? And the reality is oh so politically scandalous and asbestos-filled different.
    Folks coming to the 2020 Olympiad should be warned in advance as to the kind of welcome they might receive in certain quarters, and about in how much suspicion they’ll be held. They might be hooligans after all, who just come to Tokyo to rape, pillage and plunder! They might not recycle, take their garbage home with them, or change slippers going to the bathroom, the long-nosed foreign heathens!

    Those losers, so aptly described by Yonago999, have a very mean streak indeed. These are the backbone of the ji-ji-kai across the country (which I affectionately call The Taliban). I wouldn’t be surprised if they, the Black Van People, the various national and regional police agencies and the human-trafficking-pachinko owning mob aren’t all part and parcel of the same family. Denying events like Nanjing, and feeling very much at home at Yasukuni, they are well represented by Abe and his ilk. Wouldn’t take much to whip them all up into a frenzy with a common cause. And, as Debito frequently says, non-Japanese residents are an easy target. Especially those who look like Japanese, speak Japanese and act like Japanese……it’s a threat to little men like these guys, and this is how they show it. And as with the Gestapo or the kenpetai, the best advice is, “Watch your back!”

  • #4 john k Says:
    “..Japan will formally protest about a cartoon in a French satirical weekly of sumo wrestlers with extra limbs at the stricken Fukushima nuclear plant…”

    Ah, but I think France also has something to say:

    Japan’s best seller!!!!

    oh yeah, make sure to check out those ridiculous comments on Japan-probe.

    It seems that some very egoistic Japanese think that only, and only Japanese are allowed to trample others as they see fit. The Japanese also DEMAND the NJ community to remain silent and keep the tatamae when being walked all over.

    And I will tell that that little comic is nothing compared to the offensive impact of this:

    Japan makes manga portraying Korean POP Star “Psy” as a deranged
    criminal or more specifically a rapist.

    Warning: link#2 may be a little NSFW but is censored. however
    provides some insight on the severity of Japan’s
    very offensive and racist nature.

    However, if you attempt to criticize the sick author of the manga, the Japanese will somehow manage to turn it around and accuse critics of being racist and anti-Japanese.

    This Japanese manga portraying Psy as a monster has many parallels with that of the infamous Hanzai magazine that previously discussed on

    Apologists (both Japanese and the obsessed “Japanophiles”) will no doubt, throw everything at the French artist except for the kitchen sink. The nutjobs on apologist populated sites like JapanToday for example behave not to far off from how some Ultra-Fundamental Muslims reacted towards the Muhammed Cartoon.

    Excluding the riot and violence from the Muhammed Cartoon incident, The mental reaction towards the Mutant-Sumo wrestler Cartoon from apologists and Japanese at least, is probably the same.

    On the other hand, when Japanese make completely racist cartoons/manga portraying negatively of NJ, the world is expected to (from a Japanese and Apologist perspective) to remain silent.
    NJ who points out racism from Japanese are in turn labeled Japan-bashers and sometimes racists.

    Apologists will say that the Psy manga is just a “silly porn fantasy”, but given the ethnic identity of Psy, the negative reaction towards Gangnam from Japan, and all the social-political circumstances between Japan and Korea, I don’t think the manga is just a by-chance “Joke” some apologists will think it is.

    DR Says:
    “Ain’t so funny when the shoe is on the other foot, is it?”

    I know, it is all “fun and games” for the Japanese when they make racist comercials, tv shows, biased news, racist manga, etc. about NJ. But when the shoe is on the other foot, the Japanese will give a temper trip while trying to “educate” NJ that racism is bad, that racism hurts, blah blah blah, while turning a blind eye on their own. Or perhaps, the Japanese just cannot see their own racism, regardless of how it is written out for them.

    And the worst part of all this is that if you try to educate the Japanese, you will be accused of being a racist anti-Japan basher, like that Japanese American teacher a while back pointing out Japan’s racism.

  • He who lives by the Media, dies by the Media. So tough sh*t to the J Gov about how Fukushima and the Olympics are linked.

    They made that mess and then didn’t clean it up.

    They don’t have a really free press in Japan, even less than before, directly because of Fukushima related censorship.

    They have reaped what they sowed. Harsh but fair.

  • “Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said the satirical jabs give the wrong impression about Japan. The government has repeatedly claimed the accident and its waste water problem are under control and should not affect the Olympics. ”

    They say it is the “wrong” impressions because it is the RIGHT impression.

    Wrong means, showing Japan in a bad light, that is all.

    Japan is traditionally sensitive to opinions about it expressed in foreign media

    Oh boo hoo, diddums. Fix Fukushima then.

  • #7 Bayfield

    Wooahh..what a link, thanks for that 🙂

    A friend of mine said he saw someone wearing a T-Shirt the other day (fast).
    It had the 5 Olympic circles in their usual symbolic locations, yet each has the hazard warning sign of radioactivity, and underneath it read Tokyo 2020. Superb :):)

    Now that’s what I call a T-Shirt….better than my Roger Mellie says Bollocks T-Shirt, which is now sadly faded.


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