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OGEC

Reader comment on item: Why the Japanese Internment Still Matters

Submitted by Edward F. Thiery (Brazil), Oct 7, 2005 at 18:00

Dear Prof. Pipes:

... I am an American expatriate patriot who lives in Rio de Janeiro. We must never forget that for extremists the object of Islam is to impose the faith by the sword and exterminate those who do not accept it, including children. They have never forgotten the dream of reestablishing the caliphate, a transnational, theocratic dictatorship based on Islamic law. In it women do not even have the right to their own pudenda.

If Pres. Bush really wants to solve his problem with Iraq, he should impose a constitution on the country (as we did to Japan after WWII), declare a victory for democracy in the Middle East, pull out of Iraq, and, at least temporarily, forget about the petroleum there. Unfortunately, even if we imposed a constitution on Iraq, the various insurgents would never accept it, and the whole of Iraq would suffer the consequences. Sodom Hussein was a vicious dictator, but he knew how to deal with an intrinsically disorderly society. Why should the rest of us, including Brazil, interfere or even care?

Fortunately for us and the rest of the world, the Japanese were relatively easy to manage because Gen. Douglas McArthur had control of Hirohito, and the American general ruled Japan for a few years. It was a worthwhile tradeoff: Hirohito the war criminal got off easily by submitting himself and his country to American planning and an American constitution. Equally important, except when they persecuted Christians for a while, the Japanese have always been ambivalent about religion. It is a personal thing, much as it is or used to be for most Americans. It is not the center of their lives, even less than it is for most Americans. Except for some old-guard conservatives right after the War, an American-based constitution has served them very well.

Despite their barbarism during the War, the Japanese are quite civilized, and they are extremely pragmatic and materialistic. Since the War they have prospered, thanks initially to us and afterwards to their hard work. They certainly would not go to war to impose their religious views.

However, for Muslims, Islam is the center of their lives; everything revolves around it, and this makes all the difference. Furthermore, there are sects within Islam who can not seem to agree on a reasonable way to cooperate in governing or ruling Iraq. There is no revered Emperor to order them to surrender as did Hirohito:

"We trust that you officers and men of the Imperial forces will comply with our intention and will maintain a solid unity and strict discipline in your movements and that you will bear the hardest of all difficulties, bear the unbearable and leave an everlasting foundation of the nation."

Even Sodom could not pull off this one.

Afterwards we, including Brazil, could form an OGEC—Organization of Grain Exporting Countries. (I wish that I could take credit for the OGEC idea. I heard about it some 30 or more years ago, but it just faced away.)

Did you notice that, after Israel pulled out of Gaza, leaving the greenhouses undestroyed for the use of the Palestinians and the synagogues undestroyed out of respect for the Jewish faith, the Muslims burnt and defiled the Jewish temples? Had the opposite occurred, i.e., had Jews incinerated mosques, Islamists would undoubtedly have declared it a violation of their faith and wanted to seek revenge.

By the say, Hirohito was known as Sho-wa to his people. The name meant "Bright Peace."

Sincerely,

Edward F. Thiery
Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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