Be Brave, Americans!

-- from your friends in Japan

You say it is difficult to dissent with what the US government does right now, backed by the patriotic support of the majority.

You say it is therefore inevitable that millions in Afghanistan will die from starvation over the winter due to the disruption in aid supplies.

You say it is nonetheless justifiable to allow this to happen in the name of those who suffered on September 11.

Yes, it is indeed difficult to resist the social tide. We understand.

But remember:

You blamed the Japanese for fighting you under a totalitarian regime a half century ago and you dropped two atomic bombs in the end, almost instantaneously killing over 300,000 people, mostly civilians.

It was very, very difficult at the time even to speak against the Holy War and the Emperor, declared a manifest God, who led it.

And it must be similarly difficult for people in Afghanistan at this moment to do anything about the decisions made by Taliban leaders.

Yet you say it is precisely for this reason that they are daily bombed and killed, and will shortly be starved to death en masse.

You say it is difficult to raise your voice against that.

But, RAISE YOUR VOICE for earth's sake! Please RAISE YOUR VOICE now! Be brave! We stand by you.

Unlike the Japanese during World War II and the Afghans today, you have the best democratic institutions and the most advanced means of communication.

Please speak up against this needless calamity in the poorest of all nations.

Otherwise, the atrocities of September 11 may be justified by your inability to change your national course of action:

Just as you have justified your own attacks of terror elsewhere throughout history.

Let us raise our voices together to halt the military attacks in Afghanistan immediately, to let the lifelines of aid reach people in need, IN TIME!

*Despite our prime minister's careless promise to your president, we can™ft and won™ft support your military interventions in Afghanistan due to our Peace Constitution which states

Article 9. Aspiring sincerely to an international peace based on justice and order, the Japanese people forever renounces war as a sovereign right of the nation and the threat or use of force as a means of settling international disputes. In order to accomplish the aim of the preceding paragraph, land, sea, and air forces, as well as other war potential, will never be maintained. The right of belligerency of the state will not be recognized

Here across the Great Sea of Peace we are doing what we can to persuade our government not to abandon this gem of supreme laws in order to blindly follow the orders of your administration.

For we must never see our reason and law perish under the threat of terrorism.

That would truly be the gravest loss.

-- Jun Hoshikawa

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