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Baghdadee بغدادي

Thank you and a question.

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How do you do? Nice to meet you. I am a citizen in Kyoto in Japan.


Just now, I watched the TV news which reported that the three young Japanese hostages are released safely. As you know, they are somewhat special persons for us, because they are future hope who intend to change Japanese current wrong policy. So, firstly, I would like to appreciate all friends in the world who understand who they are and who supported them. And I highly respect the muslim leaders and people in Arabic countries who kindly recommended the kidnappers to free the young three Japanese, in spite of the cruel attack of US force and the wrong policy of Japanese Government following Bush. I think that we should try hard to change the mind of Koizumi, the prime minister of our country, more and more. We, Japanese people learned that the people in Japan and Arabic contries can unite beyoud the obstraction of Japanese government.


And, I would like to inform that two new Japanese hostages are journalists who wanted to repot what is going on in Iraq.


By the way, I have a question. In Japan, we write a sentence left-to-right or up-to-down. But, in Arabic language, the sentence is written from right-to-left. We usually express the date 16 Apr 2004 like this: [2004/4/16], [2004年4月16日] or [二〇〇四年四月一六日] in Japanese hand writing. How do you write the date in Arabic hand writing? [61/4/4002] may be not so good because it is difficult to understand. Other two patterns are possible: [16/4/2004] or [2004/4/16]. Which is the most usual way and which is impossible? Or you may have some other way to express the date. I have been interested in this issue for a long time. I think today is a good day to ask such issue.


I do not know any appropriate boards to make such a question. So, I decided to use this board, which found by google with key words `Iraq write back'.


Now, on TV, the family of the released hostages are delighting with smile and tears. Thank you very much again for your support for us. I am sorry for my broken English. See you soon.

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Japanese culture is very different from western culture. I suppose it would be safe to say Arab culture isn't at all something in between either worlds.


I did not expect the Japanese to lash out and criticize those who were held hostage.

they are somewhat special persons for us, because they are future hope who intend to change Japanese current wrong policy. So, firstly, I would like to appreciate all friends in the world who understand who they are and who supported them.
The below are various excerpts from a longer article at this link;


"They got what they deserved"

For Japanese Hostages, Release Only Adds to Stress



OKYO, April 22 — The young Japanese taken hostage in Iraq returned home this week, not to the warmth of a yellow ribbon embrace but

to a disapproving nation's cold stare.


The first three hostages, including a woman who helped street children on the streets of Baghdad, first appeared on television two weeks ago as their knife-brandishing kidnappers threatened to slit their throats. A few days after their release, they landed here on Sunday, in the eye of a peculiarly Japanese storm.


"You got what you deserve!" one Japanese held up a hand-written sign at the airport where they landed. "You are Japan's shame," another wrote on the Web site of one of the hostages. They had "caused trouble" for everybody. The government, not to be outdone, announced it would bill them $6,000 for airfare.


Treated like criminals, the three have gone into hiding, effectively becoming prisoners inside their own homes. The kidnapped woman was last seen arriving at her parents' house, looking defeated and dazed from taking tranquilizers, flanked by relatives who helped her walk and bow deeply before the media, as a final apology to the nation.



.....Beneath the surface of Japan's ultra-sophisticated cities lie the hierarchical ties that have governed this island nation for centuries and that, at moments of crises, invariably reassert themselves. The ex-hostages' transgression was to ignore a government advisory against traveling to Iraq. But their sin, in a vertical society that likes to think of itself as classless, was to defy what people call here "okami," or, literally, "what is higher."


To the angry Japanese, the first three hostages — Nahoko Takato, 34, who started her own non-profit organization to help Iraqi street children; Soichiro Koriyama, 32, a freelance photographer; and Noriaki Imai, 18, a freelance writer also interested in the issue of depleted uranium munitions — had acted selfishly. Two others kidnapped and released in a separate incident — Junpei Yasuda, 30, a freelance journalist, and Nobutaka Watanabe, 36, a member of a pro-peace non-governmental organization — were equally guilty.


Pursuing individual goals by defying the government and causing trouble for Japan was simply unforgivable. So the single government official to praise them was, not surprisingly, an American one.




The criticism began almost immediately after the first three were kidnapped two weeks ago. The environment minister, Yuriko Koike, blamed them for being "reckless."


After the hostages' families asked that the government yield to the kidnappers' demand and withdraw its 550 troops from southern Iraq, they began receiving hate mail and harassing faxes and email. In the village of Japan, like the one in "The Lottery," one had to throw stones.


Even as the kidnappers were still threatening to burn alive the three hostages, Yukio Takeuchi, a top official in the foreign ministry, said of the three, "When it comes to a matter of safety and life, I would like them to be aware of the basic principle of personal responsibility."




Some politicians proposed a law barring Japanese from traveling to dangerous countries; even more said the hostages should pay the costs incurred by the government in securing their release.


"This is an idea that should be considered," the Yomiuri Newspaper, Japan's biggest daily, said in an editorial. "Such an act might deter other reckless, self-righteous volunteers."


When two freed hostages mentioned wanting to stay or return to Iraq to continue their work, Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi angrily urged them "to have some sense."


"Many government officials made efforts to rescue them, without even eating and sleeping, and they are still saying that sort of thing?" he said.


The comment was revealing, one that would not be uttered, at least publicly, in the United States where the government is supposed to serve the people. Here, the government is now trumpeting "personal responsibility" for those going to dangerous areas — essentially saying that travelers shouldn't accept any help from the government to secure their safety or get out of trouble.


Again, no Japanese politician dared to speak out against this idea.


Indeed, Mr. Koizumi's handling of the hostage crisis translated into positive polls, and the issue diverted attention from Iraq's worsening security situation and the fact that Japan's troops, according to this country's peace Constitution, are supposed to be in a non-combat zone.




The above comments were most of the news article text. I find it a very curious yet interesting cultural stand.

I would hope most of the world picks up and reads the link. Maybe Aljazeera will pick up on it ? :D

"They got what they deserved"

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Thank you for reply. After five hostages were released, we have been struggling to fight aginst that very cold atmosphere in Japanese society. The article introduced above well reports current miserable Japanese situation. Some foreign newspapers, including Corea, French, USA, Bangladesh and so on, have also mentioned that issue, with deep interest.

Of course, many Japanese persons with sound sense asserted that the young Japanese did right things, and protested to the cold comments of governers. I hope that these opinions are now extending influence.

Anyway, thank you again for having interest in the brave Japanese young people. I continue fighting against reactionary aspect of Japanese socity.

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I think the Japanese have an interesting outlook on life just as they are.The world should study,take note and respect them for what they believe in and present to us all.

Anyway, thank you again for having interest in the brave Japanese young people. I continue fighting against reactionary aspect of Japanese socity.


Good luck with your attempts at an attitude adjustment.


I think it will be easier for you to personally climb Mount Fuji in a kimono :)

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