Apr 8, 2004

Creating democracy with the big dogs

80% of today's Yomiuri Shimbun front page is devoted to this story:
3 Japanese Abducted in Iraq

The three hostages - two free-lance writers and a volunteer worker helping Iraqi children - are being held by the "Mujahedeen Brigades," who offer Japan an ultimatum: remove the Self-Defense Forces from Iraq or the hostages will be burned alive.

At a press conference late Thursday in Tokyo, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasuo Fukuda called the act of terror "unforgivable," but stated that the SDF are in Iraq for "humanitarian reconstruction efforts, and therefore there is no reason to call them back." Fukuda declined to comment on what Japan's response would be if the three were hurt.


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