Tuesday, January 31, 2012

イスラエル、イラン戦争を応援している黒幕です。 Israel, the power behind the rush to war with Iran.

I am seeing the outline of a conspiracy. I do not like to discuss conspiracy theories in general, too often they go off into fantasy. But this time, events fit what I know.


Recently, Japanese Vice Foreign Minister Yamane visited Israeli Foreign Minister Lieberman in Jerusalem. He was attempting to explain Japan's position that time is needed to find other suppliers before cutting off Iranian oil.


I doubt that Foreign Minister Lieberman will be impressed. He is an extreme hawk, there are people who consider him to be irresponsible. I am one of those people.


Why should a Japanese Vice Foreign Minister go to Israel, when America is demanding sanctions, that Japan cease to buy Iranian oil?


The truth is, Israel is behind the American war plans for Iran.


There seem to be politicians in Israel who believe that a war with Iran will not be so bad. They think Iran's ability to retaliate is limited, and that Iran cannot close the Straight of Hormuz for an extended period of time.



This is extremely foolish. The oil tanker lanes through the straight are very narrow. If a supertanker is sunk there, they will be closed permanently. In any case, Iran has many small boats that can carry missiles. The Straights of Hormuz are so narrow, anti ship missiles can be fired from the coasts.


In any case, Iran is not waiting. The EU granted time to Spain, Greece and Italy to find alternate suppliers, they could wait until July 1st.


Iran has now said that will cut those countries off now.


Those countries are already is serious economic distress, cutting off Iranian oil now will push them into turmoil. Which will pull the rest of Europe into turmoil, and then America and Japan.


Things never go according to plan.


This whole mess started with American Republican Presidential candidates debated on who could be tougher with Iran. As I have often written in my blog, the present US Republican party is dominated by the Christian Fundamentalist movement.


And to those people, Israel has a strong meaning. They see the existence of Israel as fulfilling Biblical prophecy. Their belief is that for Jesus to return to Earth, there must be a final great battle between good and evil at Armageddon, in northern Israel. Here good will prevail, all non Christians, including the Jews, will die, and Jesus will rule a 1,000 year Golden Kingdom on Earth.


American Christian Fundamentalists believe this is absolute truth from God. And until the battle of Armageddon, American Christian Fundamentalists will ferociously protect Israel and anything Israel does, because Israel's existence is necessary to fulfill the Biblical prophecy.


Of course, Israeli politicians know these beliefs, and that Jews are required to die. Yet they also understand the strength of political Christian Fundamentalism in the United States.


Israel has long regarded Iraq and Iran as it's primary enemies. Israel does not have the military power to attack Iran. It's aircraft do not have the range. The only thing Israel could do is launch a nuclear missile attack. And that would bring too much reprisal.


So Israel is happy to let America attack Iran. And American Republicans are happy to cooperate with Israel. It is a very cynical relationship, both sides using each other.


From what I can see, President Obama is doing his best to avert a war with Iran. He does seem to understand that it would be a disaster for the world economy. Just yesterday I saw this in the news:



This is a face saving measure. The UN has long been conducting inspections in Iran, including permanent cameras in Iranian nuclear facilities.


But Democrats are traditionally looked upon as weak in Defense matters, the President is going to have a difficult problem in appearing to be strong and yet avoid war.


Also, the President cannot publicly say anything against Israel. Israel has much power in America. AIPAC, their primary lobbying organization, is an example. Any American politician who says anything negative about Israel is very likely to lose his next election.


AIPAC also conducts espionage inside the United States,


As I indicated in my last blog post, The CIA and even the Israeli Mossad have long reported that Iran is not making a bomb.


In any case, sanctions have already failed. Russia, China, Turkey, and India will still buy Iranian oil.


What should Japan do? I think we should be firm with America and tell them the truth. Iran is not doing any thing to warrant sanctions, and we will continue commercial relations. There is just too much crazy religious prejudice from the American Christian Right wing. This is not Japan's problem.


As for Israel, to show our disapproval, I think the Japanese ambassador should be withdrawn until Israel can behave like a normal country.


Friday, January 20, 2012

日本、アメリカとイラン戦争 Japan, America, and a possible Iran war

I have been watching this possible war with Iran unfold over the past few weeks. America, and Europe, are doing all they can to pressure Iran. In the American Presidential race, candidates are having a competition to see who can be the most aggressive to launch a war with Iran.


And in fact, the United States, Britain, and Israel have been conducting a covert war in Iran of assassination and sabotage since the Bush administration.



Yet the American CIA says that Iran is not making a nuclear weapon, International agencies detect no evidence of Iran making a nuclear weapon.


Most Americans refuse to believe this.


And according to Professor Juan Cole of the University of Michigan, the true goal of the Obama administration is to force the collapse of the Iranian government, by imposing sanctions.



Whenever the US government has tried to force governmental change, it has nearly always failed.


America has maintained sanctions against Cuba since 1962, the idea is to force collapse, the Cuban government is still there.


But President Obama does seem to be trying to keep tensions from going into all out war. He has cancelled a scheduled joint US/Israeli military exercise.


There is a lot of election year politics going on here, with the Republican Presidential candidates accusing President Obama of being weak against an enemy.


As America declines, they will enter a dangerous phase. They will desire to show they are still strong, and they do this by military means.


Americans are angry about not having won in Iraq. Or in Afghanistan. They say that they were not defeated.


It is true that America's military forces were not destroyed. However, they accomplished nothing in 8 years of war in Iraq. In fact, they created an ally of Iran. Saddam's Iraq was an enemy of Iran, now Iraq under Maliki is an ally of Iran.


If Iran is an enemy of America, this is a complete blunder.



To show their contempt of America, few Iraqi officials attended the withdrawal ceremony.



So after being humiliated in Iraq, Americans are very anxious to find a new enemy, somewhere they can prove the strength of American military power.


There are two candidates now to be targets of American anger, Iran and China.


America is recently making calculations that the United States could survive a closure of the straight of Hormuz. They believe that they can get enough oil from shale sources in the US, Canadian oil sands, undersea fields in the Gulf of Mexico and Brazil, and from the Alaskan arctic.


They believe that these sources of oil will allow the US to challenge Iran and China.


Well, what about Japan? If American action causes the straits of Hormuz to close, will they give us some oil? I doubt it, Americans really aren't thinking about Japan or Europe.


In any case, all of these areas are very difficult to exploit. A few years ago, there was a disaster in the Gulf of Mexico when an undersea BP well exploded. Developing the Brazilian fields will be expensive. Developing the tar sands and shale fields in America are expensive, and destroy fresh water supplies in a country facing massive drought.


And in any case, it is not certain how much oil actually exists in those undersea fields.


As usual, Americans are way too optimistic about their abilities, and the reality of the world. The only way to survive is to develop alternative energy, and to cut down on oil consumption.


America refuses to try.


Americans say that they have the military power to keep the straits of Hormuz open if Iran tries to close them.


I keep thinking of a war game in 2002, Millennium Challenge.

私はいつもこの2002年の戦争ゲーム”Millennium Challenge”を思い出します。


This game was supposed to prove the usefulness of American military strategy. Instead, it was a disaster. In this game "Blue" (America) issued an ultimatum to "Red"(Iran). The next day of the game, small boats of the Red Navy sank 17 ships of the Blue Navy by shooting a massive amount of cruise missiles. 1 Blue aircraft carrier, 10 Blue cruisers and destroyers, and 5 out of 6 amphibious landing vessels were sunk. If it had been a real war, 20,000 US sailors and Marines would have died in a few hours.


The planners of the game the stopped it, changed the rules to fit the version of war that they wanted, and to show that America would win.


However, when the game actually started, it accurately reflected on the capability of the Iranian Navy. They possess the small boats and missiles that could destroy an American fleet in the strait of Hormuz.


America refused to face reality in the game. Also, America refuses to face reality today in dealing with Iran, or China.


And again, Japan appears to be giving in to American pressure to stop buying oil from Iran. But America does not seem to care what damage will come to Japan.


I will tell you the truth. If America starts a war with Iran, Japan will lose ALL Middle Eastern oil. America and Israel desperately want a war with Iran. They also believe in the fantasy that they can win it, despite losing almost every war since Korea.



But why must Japan always follow America's orders, even when those orders harm Japan? It is shameful.


Russia and China will not follow American orders, they will buy Iranian oil and profit. The sanctions will fail.


Why must Japan suffer for American delusions?


Breaking news on this story. Israeli Intelligence. Mossad says there is no evidence that Iran is making a nuclear weapon. Israel Defense Minister Barak says there is no immediate Israeli plan to attack Iran.


Professor Juan Cole of the University of Michigan feels that President Obama has probably put behind the scenes pressure on the Israelis to calm things down. I agree.



Monday, January 2, 2012

(日本にいる)外人は何ですか? What is a Gaijin?

下記の投稿は、私が2010年1月14日 に、Best of the Blogs で投稿しました。


So what is a Gaijin? In Japanese it means foreigner. Japan is unique in many respects, the foreign experience for the last 40 years or so has also been quite unique.


America is a land of immigrants. And Americans, well in general we think of immigrants not really being successful until the second or third generation. The problems of langauge, and understanding a different culture are immense. And the older a person is, the more difficult it is.


My own Grandfather came to America from Sweden. He was 20, and spoke no English. He landed in New York, but heard that there Swedes living in Chicago. So he made his way there and became a house painter. He worked hard and bought a nice house in rural Wisconsin. He married, and my mother was born, and the result of that was me.


A pretty average American story. But when I came back to the US from my first posting in the Marine Corps in Japan, and I told my Grandfather that I would spend the rest of my life in Japan, he got angry. "What! They will treat you like idiots! You will never get a good job!".


From the average American experience, this is what a person would expect moving to another country.


But as I said, Japan is unique. A lot of this is due to history. Japan has always had a very vibrant cultural life. And when Commodore Perry's squadron forced Japan to end it's seclusion in 1854, Japan eagerly embraced Western technology and culture.


Until WWII, there were very few Westerners living in Japan. Mostly missionaries and a few businessmen. However, Japan's defeat in WWII was a shock. Japan is a proud country, with a long history. The truth is, Japan made excellent weapons, and Japanese were excellent soldiers. The only way that America won WWII in the Pacific is because America had more of everything.


But to Japanese people, they felt that Americans must possess some special inner spiritual quality that guaranteed victory in the war.


As I have said, Japan has a long history with deep culture, and the treatment of the guest has always been a refined art.


Now combine this tradition of treating guests well with regrading Westerners as superior due to their military victory over Japan, we have the beginnings of our unique situation.


When I first arrived in Japan in 1974, there were still few foreigners living here. The average Western foreigner was either former American military, or a backpacker tourist. The tourists would come to Japan for a year or so, and make their money for their Asian trip. In those days, you could hear stories about the great Hashish to be had in Kabul, or riding a bus from Calcutta to Istanbul for $40.


Japanese curiosity about foreigners and the West was insatiable. People would pay you money just to talk to you in English. So some people made a bundle of cash off the English business.


Since so many Japanese regarded Westerners as superior, many foreigners made a lot of money doing TV commercials. All beauty product commercials used to have White Western women, car commercials used to use Westerners exclusively.


When I came here in 1974, it was still very difficult for most Japanese to travel outside Japan for financial reasons. Thusly, the intense interest in any Westerner in Japan.


By the 1980's, several Gaijin had written books that went something like "YOU can go to Japan and make a lot of money!". Then, we had a flood of people, who to put it mildly, were not exemplary representatives of their country.


You could take Mr. Nerd from Cornfield Village USA. At home, the major job position he could aspire to would be sub assistant manager at the local Wendy's. He would not be able to get a date to save his life.


Now this person arrives in Japan. On his first night in Tokyo, he meets a Japanese businessman who wants to practice English. He gets treated to a full course dinner, and is given $100 for Taxi fare, even though the trains are still running. He goes to a bar and meets a stunningly beautiful girl who wants to have sex with him so she can practice her English. In his first week, he lands a TV commercial and pulls in $6,000 for sitting around on the set.


Now this kind of thing goes to some people's heads. Many people began to actually believe that they were superstars. Charisma Man is a comic strip of the time that parodied this effect.

こう言うな事で、普通の人は自分がスーパースターと考えました。当時の外人が書いた漫画、 ”Charisma Man””カリスママン”が、この事をパロディーしました。


Frankly, for many years I have been disgusted by most foreigners. I have worked as a manager for a foreign casting agency. We would supply foreigners for TV shows, movies, and commercials.


Things like showing up on time, bringing the proper clothes they were told to bring, bathing, these things were too much for many people. Canceling jobs at the last minute, or not showing up at all.


My wife was very surprised one day on getting a call from an agent, that I should wear a suit for the next day's film job. And the agent defined a suit as a dark jacket and trousers of the same color, a white shirt, a conservative tie, black leather shoes, dark socks.


Well, the person reading this might think "Well of course!". I remember one day on the set. My Gaijin was supposed to be a banker in conference with Japanese bankers. He showed up in a cream sport jacket, a plaid work shirt, jeans, running shoes, and the necktie was a Donald Duck necktie. There was a lot of screaming over that one.


I also had a guy who boasted of not having changed his underwear for a year. His aroma filled a conference room for 300 people. He also boasted about not brushing his teeth for ten years. I won't go into that one.


And there was the guy who always took off his clothes. When it was time for him to film, I would announce "Mr. T could you put on your clothes. We are going to film!"


The fact is, most Gaijins came here and let themselves go to seed, and became arrogant. They expected special treatment as a matter of course.


Even the word Gaijin has become controversial among some Westerners. There are people out there who claim it is prejudicial. They say "Gaikokujin" is the proper word.


Well, Gaijin is formed from two Chinese Characters, meaning outside person. Gaikokujin has three characters, meaning outside country person.


To tell the truth, their meaning is identical, neither has any special prejudicial meaning.


And I do get irritated when some idiot who has been here a year and a half lectures me about Japanese prejudices, and tells me I don't know what I am talking about.


I have only lived here for 37 years, and I write articles in Japanese. To such idiots, I don't know anything.


And of course, these arrogant Gaijin never learned Japanese, they always got by in just English.


But times have shifted. Years ago, Japanese people would be afraid to approach me in public because they would think their English skills were insufficient. Today people approach me on the street in Japanese.


Japanese car and beauty product adverts use Japanese, no more Gaijin.


Or if a commercial does want Gaijin, they fly the director and cameraman to LA, and use professional Americans.


And most young Japanese are simply indifferent to Gaijin, just another person, nobody special just for being born somewhere else.


And frankly, I find that very relaxing. I never liked speaking English after I came here anyway, I wanted to speak Japanese. I can't tell you how many sure thing dates I blew. Some gorgeous babe would hook up with me, things were going swimmingly, and she would coo to me "So when are you going back to America?"


My reply would be "Well I am going to change my passport to Japanese, and stay here forever. I will never go back to America"


Then she says "You Creep!" and stomps off. Well actually, the truth is that many of my girlfriends before I got married simply did not like Gaijin. But then I was always different. While most Gaijin were working English teaching jobs, I worked in Japanese corporations, or as a Japanese construction worker.


But I must say that there has been a sea change in the type of Gaijin coming here now. They have a genuine interest in Japan and Japanese culture. The anime boom in particular has attracted a lot of people. They study Japanese before coming here, and they don't have the arrogance of people 20 years ago.


And what about those arrogant Gaijins of 20 years ago, where are they today? Well there is a process I call "Economic Darwinism" which means that in tough economic times, the idiot shall not be employed. These days, there simply is not any use for a Gaijin who cannot speak Japanese. Unless they have carved out some special situation, they disappear. I suppose they have gone back to Cornfield Village USA to see if that position at Wendy's is still open.