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31 August 2010

Marine Documentary “One Shot, One Kill”

The life in boot camp for new recruits of U.S. Marine Co. in South Carolina.

I watched this film in peace event in Okinawa which has US marine facilities, only marine bases outside the U.S. People see it because they want to know how their neighbors are trained before they come to the island.   

The documentary film was directed by peace activist film director, Yukihisa Fujimoto. But the film was overall neutral stance, just showing how young recruits become marines who show no mercy when it comes to killing enemies.

 

The first thing they do is dial their parents that they join training so they cannot get in touch with their parents for months. They have to say just as instructed.

 

They call themselves “this recruit”, not “I”. In first 48 hours they are not allowed to sleep. Boys have to have their hair very short cut. They’ve been yellowed by their instructors whenever they make mistakes. But they just follow the orders, and have no doubts. That is how they are trained to be. They shout “One shot, one kill” many times in the training in order to brainwash themselves to give up hesitance to kill people.

 

Attendees were mostly peace activists and lefty. They protest military and war. They say this shouldn’t be done. But I have a different view. Even though it is such a dirty job, someone has to carry on, if not, your life may be in danger. You, your families, and properties cannot be saved. You have to rely on the military.

 

The problem is those who join the marines come from poor families. It is like poverty draft. The same thing is happening in Japan, too. The recruiters usually hunt new recruits in poor families or areas. Some say conscription has to be revived in order to avoid such unfairness.

 

The war is human nature. As long as we humans survive, we continue to fight each other. What we have to do is think how to minimize casualties and tragedies. You cannot make it zero.

 

As for the marines in Okinawa, I would say to them “Please leave, you are not welcome there. It is for you.” Okinawa is no longer best place for the U.S. Marines.

 

Japan is sovereign nation. We are not occupied by the U.S. any more. Unlike the cold war era, there is no strategic necessity of the U.S. military presence for the both countries. Not just Marines, Air force, navy, ground force have to leave as well.

 

We appreciate the U.S. military’s deterrence, the U.S. government’s financial aid and generous open market policy for Japanese goods. But the times was changed. The U.S. military no longer functions as it did in the past. More of us learned that. The presence might deteriorate the relationship between the two nations.

 

Why not we just keep having good relationship by your leaving Japan? Of course we are friends and close allies, that will never be changed. We can corporate each other whenever necessary, just when mutual interest exist.

The below is preview of the film. Of course, the film is all English version.

17 August 2010

Why they protest US military base

Anti-US military base activist, Mr. Ashitomi spoke to young students from Palestinean, and Israel with interpreter.

He talked about why he set up the tent to monitor nearby US marine base, Camp Schwab.

Japanese government recently agreed with the US marine on expansion of the current marine base for the relocation of the Futenma base in Okinawa.  

Part 1 is environmetal issue related to the construction of new base. Part 2 is peace issue.

Anti-US base activist talks 反米軍基地活動家の話し Part 1

 

Anti-US base activist talks 反米軍基地活動家の話し Part 2

 

You can learn more detail in this blog's tag, Okinawa, which you can access by clicking the below.

27 June 2010

German film "Die Welle" It can be true!

The story took place in Highs School in Germany. One high school teacher taught students what the dictatorship (Autokratie) is.

Students never understood what it was and believed things like Third Reich would never happen again.

Then the teacher decided to do psychological experiment in his class and the students' attitude gradually changed in scary way.

The story was not well-done, not convincing althought it was based on a true story.

However, I understand fear of charisma featured in the film because I recently experienced something like that by the man in the below photo.

tamogami_at_kudanshita.JPG

 

 

 

 

He has become public icon since fall of 2008 after being dismissed as Japanese Air force chief due to his publicly released essay which justified Japan's past invasion. Details are described in this article. He has published several books since then. I bought one of them.

He is in fact charismatic and neo-fascist-like but at the same time very realistic because of his knowledge gained in his career.

No one wants to be isolated in the society. So people want some kind of symbol to strengthen the unity.

Yes, it can revive as described in the film. Especially those who are not smart, and youngsters can be easily manipulated.  

Being attracted to it sometimes makes you feel great like drugs.

We need to be cool about what a learder says in order to avoid tragedy.

27 April 2010

Book "America's Poor Class Education field report" by Soichi Hayashi

The author of the book is Japanese sports journalist who worked as a part-time teacher in a chartered high school in Reno, Nevada 2006.

The students come from very poor families and dropped out from regular school. Most of them live with single parents.

They do not have good knowledge nor manner. They grew up in a very bad environment where parents don't have money and time to take good care of them.

The author witnessed the reality of America's poor bottom class. The author himself grew up in the similar environment in Japan so he somehow felt mutual with them. He had guts and loved students so he worked hard to get them know how wonderful and necessary it is for them to learn new things so that they can make a new way of living getting out from ghetto they were in.  

The author taught them Japanese culture as Sumo, Manga, fairy tales. On one class he told them Japan's most famous fairy tale "Urashima Taro" a story of a fisherman who saved a turtle from bullying by children on the beach and later be guided by the turtle to the palace under the sea. But when he came back to the ground, so much more time than he felt had passed, he had no one to know him.

He asked the students what they think about the story. Students were very much impressed by that and one of them replied to him "the story gave us a lesson that we shouldn't expect return from good thing we do."

Recently in Japan, books on America's poor class have been published like the below ones I've already introduced on this blog.

Super Class society, The truth of America 

Empire of Poverty (Hinkon-Taikoku), America!

This one is especially unique since that is hands-on experience of the author as foreign teacher who taught his home culture to troubled students abroad.

I wonder if this book is made into film some day. It should be like "Freedom Writers" or "Take the lead."

23:42 Posted in Books, Society, un-USA | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: education, poverty