Since the inauguration of the new Abe administration in December 2012, the question of constitutional revision, and in particular the revision of Article 9, which states that Japan renounces war and will not retain military forces with the potential for war, has been an issue which has considerable support from the nation’s right wing. The left wing, however, insist that Article 9 should not only be maintained, but should be the pride of the nation, since it is the only example of a peace constitution in the world.
Therefore it is unsurprising that netizens have reacted strongly to the news that a website set up by a Japanese housewife that petitions for the Japanese people to be awarded to Nobel Peace Prize for conserving Article 9 of the constitution is gaining increased support. While some think the movement is an excellent idea that reminds Japan of what it should truly be proud of, others think that the idea is a hair-brained left-wing strategy to thwart Abe’s plans to revise the constitution.
From Yahoo ! Japan:
Support Widens For Petition Site Campaigning For The Japanese People To Win Nobel Peace Prize
Give the Nobel Peace Prize to the Japanese people for protecting article 9 of the constitution. An online movement to spread the significance of Japan having continued to protect the article that denounces war for around 70 years following the end of the war is gaining attention. Scholars from Kobe have added their names to those endorsing the petition, and the site, which went online in autumn of last year, has already gathered the support of over 13,000 people.
The site is the idea of Takanosu Naomi (37), a housewife from Zama, Kanagawa Prefecture. In Austrlia, where she had been an exchange student in her school days, she met people who had been forced to flee their homelands due to civil war and so on, and it was then that she realised the importance of Japan as a peaceful nation, and article 9 of the constitution which ensured that peace.
“Be it for defence or intervention, it’s never OK to exercise military power. We have to give importance to the general meaning of article 9, which is ‘we will definitely not go to war'”.
In May last year, when the debate over constitutional revision intensified, Takanosu collected signatures on her personal website, asking the head of the Nobel Prize committee that “article 9” be nominated for the prize. She received suggestions from the committee head, saying that “the prize can only be given to individuals or groups”, “In order to nominate, a person needs to be a national politician, theological leader, or a recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize”. It was then that she changed the object of the petition to “the Japanese people, who conserve article 9”.
The site’s activities spread throughout Japan via citizen groups, and an executive committee was formed. By the end of last year, individuals and groups had gathered together as concerned signatories. Of these, Katsumura Hiroya, an associate professor of bible studies at Kobe Shoin Women’s University, thought that “We shouldn’t just treat the debate over constitutional revision as a problem for Japan, this is also a chance for us to consider it from the global perspective of the constitution of a nation that has not been to war for around 70 years”, and approved of the purpose of the petition.
The deadline for nominations for this year’s Peace prize is February 1, and the signatures gathered by that date will be added to the letter. Takanosu says “I want the voices of all those people who say that we must never go to war again to be heard”. She says that the movement will continue until Japan receives the prize. For more details, visit the executive committee’s petition site ｈｔｔｐ：／／ｃｈｎ．ｇｅ／１ｂＮＸ７Ｈｂ
Comments from 2ch.net:
Don’t do such disgraceful things.
We don’t need that fucking Western propaganda prize, the Nobel Peace Prize.
Huh? Are the left-wing all idiots?
Makes me feel sick how this is blatantly the cock-brained idea of the left-wing to make constitutional revision more difficult.
They’re just getting tetchy because Abe’s cabinet is reviewing constitutional revision.
The left-wing are desperate.
Um, article 9 of the constitution was made by GHQ, so MacArthur should be the one getting the prize (´・ω・｀)
The article 9 believers just want to use the Nobel Prize for their purposes.
Plus, the prize money would equate to one yen per Japanese citizen.
All Japanese citizens should be recipients of the prize, and she’ll continue the movement until the prize is awarded?
Man, that things that housewives with time on their hands think about…
Comments from Twitter:
JAPAN ART LINK:
In the past, Japan was even part of a pioneering group in the world that put labour laws and environmental laws in place, but now, we’ve taken a step backwards, and have started to drop to the level of a second-rate country. Among all that, article 9 of the constitution has great significance, because it was the dreams of a people remembered in a constitution.
Is it really OK to have a provision in a constitution that just wasn’t thought through?
Wow, is she trying to nominate herself for a Nobel Prize…!?
Article 9 of the constitution is just an empty shell now, so please quit doing such embarrassing things. So dubious that you’re trying to match President Obama being given the Peace Prize.
Hmm. A movement where one group of Christians are involved. (I’m a Christian, but I don’t support this.)
Does this mean they’re asking for the Nobel Prize?
I understand the sentiment behind it, but, this kind of thing just makes me feel physically ill.
She’s doing this kind of thing just to get approval from others (in this case, foreigners), right? From my own perspective (as a Japanese), to say “Give us the Nobel Prize” is just embarrassing, and I wish she’d stop.
Not really bothered about the article, but I’m really interested in the comments! As I’m reading them, they’re making me think pretty hard about this issue.
It’s all because Japan’s constitution is a peace constitution that is the only such example in the word. I reckon it’d be good if we got the prize for that *and* Japanese food.
Rude of me to say so, but ARE YOU OK IN THE HEAD??? I wish you wouldn’t get other citizens caught up in your own weird thoughts.
Hmm, now, the thing is, that the reason Japan doesn’t go to war is thanks to the US-Japan Security Treaty, it’s not because of Article 9.
Japan really is a stable/safe country.
I look forward to see what happens from here on in.