Sheep? *UPDATED*

There is a horrific story out of Japan today about a man who crashed a truck into a crowd of people, and then proceeded to complete the carnage by stabbing as many of them as possible. The story says that the man ended his spree only when surrounded by police:

A witness told NHK the suspect dropped the knife after police threatened to shoot him. An amateur video filmed by a mobile phone showed policemen overpowering the bespectacled suspect.

I’ve never been in a violent situation (thank God), so I have absolutely no idea what the dynamics are. I don’t know what it feels like to be paralyzed by gut-clenching fear. I don’t know what I would do if a maniac headed towards me (or anyone else) with a knife. And I don’t know how many people were already incapacitated because of the initial truck crash. But . . . . But . . . .

It’s always seemed to me that the nature of a knife is that, in a crowd, it’s a “one person at a time” weapon. When Brits used to boast about their lower death rate from crime, it was easy to point out that they had just as many violent attacks, only they did it less efficiently with knives in bars. In other words, back then, they were as willing to kill as Americans but, because they didn’t have a gun culture (something that has changed, as they now have both a knife and a gun culture), the damage was more limited.

How is it, therefore, that this guy was able to inflict such spectacular damage with a knife? Was there no one there who could take on a guy wielding a knife? It’s possible, of course, that everyone in proximity was already too damaged by the car crash to be of any defensive use, but I do wonder.

I suspect that, as Ymarsakar (who blogs at Sake White) might say, modern Japanese society has bred itself down to sheep-like status, with its individual members incapable of defending themselves any more. All they do is wait for the guard dogs to come to their defense. (Jews, between 1938 and 1945, learned that the guard dogs often do not come. That’s why Israel, up until recently, has done such a damn good job of defending herself.)

Do you all have more information or different opinions? As you can see, I’m just wildly hypothesizing here about a story that struck me as both horrible and peculiar.

UPDATE: I wasn’t the only one who noticed this. As 11B40 points out in a comment, CDR Salamander made exactly the same point, only better, because he knows about combat and combat training.

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  • socratease

    When I was heavily involved in the gun rights debate, I remember the anti-gun people often took the position that many of the types of sports practiced by gun owners — IPSC, three-gun, action pistol, working out home invasion scenarios, etc. — were war games intended to teach gun owners how to kill, and that they were obsessed with violence. The truth is that it is a long-recognized aspect of human behavior that, when confronted by a dire threat, people revert to what they’ve been trained to do, and such training is there to allow you to respond to an attack even though your higher brain functions get suppressed by the shock and adrenalin. If you have no such training, the same rule still applies, and you will do what you have been trained to do: nothing. Probably some people on the scene tried to do something, but without training it is likely to be a half-hearted defense hampered by uncertainty and fear.

    This kind of attack is highly aberrant in Japan. Self-destructive people in that society almost uniformly express those impulses inwardly and privately, in suicide or killing of family members. The idea of going into public and attacking a group of strangers (and not foreigners) is almost unthinkable there. If there are more such attacks, I would see it as a sign of radical changes taking place in Japanese society.

  • 11B40


    One concept to consider is what has been called “diffusion of responsibility.” It refers to a failure to act in a group situation because no one involved assumes a leadership role. The stereotypical example is the Kitty Genovese murder in the 1960s in Queens, NY where her geographical neighbors heard heard her being stabbed to death but avoided any direct involvement.

    “socratease” makes an excellent point in regard to prior training. Having personal confidence and, possibly, appropriate personal tools are good things but contrary to our culture’s current need to emasculize.

    There was an item on the Commander Salamander web site the other day about the elderly man who was the victim of a hit and run car accident and then ignored by a number of bystanders. He insisted that his subordinates would not have failed to act due to their training and personal sense of responsibility. I would agree.

  • David Foster

    This story suggests some worrisome trends in Japanese society.

  • Gringo

    It would appear that both the germans and Japanese have learned all too well the lessons of WW2.

  • Mike Devx

    I think there is probably something to the idea of a cultural Japanese response of passiveness when they are confronted with violence.

    But do you think it’s also possible that there is a period of shock where people are simply incapable of action because they’re disabled by shock? Consider that people are just going through the motions of getting to work, essentially with all guards down, even with their minds partly turned off, and then suddenly violence erupts.

    More important to me is the subsequent flight vs fight response afterwards. A mass of screaming people rushing away from the threat leaves the knife wielder free to continue slashing away. In today’s reporting on this attack, I did not hear that any of the attacked fought the attacker. I’ll be keeping an eye out for the details of that…

    Most importantly to me, is what the attacker apparently said: “I am sick of life, and so I decided to kill a lot of people.”

    First of all, that must be rejected as a complete lie, if even a lie to himself. If you’re sick of life to that extent, you take your own life. To kill as many people as you can along the way requires a deep anger and probably sociopathy. Also, we’ll find out if this creep desired publicity as well.

    I’d prefer no one ever saw their snapshots, let alone videos, even while in court. There is nothing to be gained by trying to peer through their eyes into their souls. I’ve known that ever since following the Ted Bundy murders. Many ordinary people – who do not kill – appear scarier than most of these monsters. Let’s avoid generating the publicity these creeps seek.

  • Ymarsakar

    The Japanese came from a feudal and tribal hierarchy and so kidnapping and paying ransoms are part of the social order to them. There are some additional reasons for that, but they are secondary to the point.

    The Japanese also place higher trust in the “boss”. Meaning if your employee is kidnapped, you are responsible, because you are the boss, for getting released unharmed. This creates harsh political fallout for politicians that don’t negotiate the release of hostages.

    For Americans, getting taken hostage is both undignified, unlawful, and dishonorable. This is sourced somewhat from American frontier attitudes and the War of Independence.

    The flip side to the Japanese hierarchy is that if the boss says kill or die, the subordinate kills or dies by command. Thus if the Japanese ever elected a leader or a generation of leaders that would make war on their enemies and crush them underfoot, while still remaining a republic or at least America’s ally and friend, then that’d be a really big dent in the side of our enemies.

    The saving grace of Japanese hierarchies is that the boss can command the lives of their subordinates, yet the subordinates are owed loyalty and protection from the boss in return. In old Samurai times, you weren’t “owed a job”, ala communist manifesto teachings, but you were owed protection and help of one kind or another. Very feudal. If socialism can corrupt America’s independent spirit, think what it can do to Japan.

  • Gringo

    Y: if passively accepting being kidnapped because ransom will be paid is characteristic of the “feudal and tribal hierarchy” from which Japan came, then how does this correlate with the “die before I will be taken prisoner” mentality of the Japanese soldier in WW2?

  • Ymarsakar

    “die before I will be taken prisoner” mentality of the Japanese soldier in WW2?

    Dying in the service of the Emperor is sort of like not violating your oaths swore upon your sacred honor is to Americans.

    Surrendering when fighting for your feudal lord was seen as treason and oath breaking. It is like how chivalry for the French meant riding in on a cavalry charge without consideration of tactics or strategy. Did this mean they got killed needlessly? yeah. Did they see it as cowardly to use “tactics” though? Yeah. Other people with different honor codes or more pragmatism, would have a naturally different view on chivalry and what it required. Just as Americans see upholding your oaths requiring that you also live to uphold your oaths. To Americans, getting yourself killed and removing your experience and skill from the defenders of America just because you don’t want to return home defeated is the real act of treason.

    Democracy has given the Japanese a greater appreciation for life, as seen in popular animes like Naruto where death may be lighter than a feather but that’s no reason to smoke more feathers.

    As for passively accepting being kidnapped, given that I have not read the details of this case, it is more of a civilian mentality than a Japanese one.

    Tradition is all nice and good but it is experience you need. And experience with violence and killing people is something that civilized people no longer study, and not just the Japanese.

  • Ymarsakar

    The solution to people being held hostage or under house arrest in the feudal days for a Japanese man was to committ hara kiri, ritual suicide as per the Romans, in order to save the disgrace on your family acquired through you being captured or held hostage or made to do things that contradicted your feudal oath.

    Course, that’s no longer politically acceptable in Japan, but that doesn’t mean people still don’t adhere to the other side of the coin in terms of paying ransom. Democracies, being weak and self-compromising as they are, always loves paying ransom for short term gain but long term sacrifice.

    Just look at Israel. They exchanged 1000 Palestinian prisoners for 2 Israelis. And they oftentimes would exchange 500 LIVE Palestinians for the body of a DEAD Israeli. How’s that for the principles of democracy and republicanism?

  • Mike Devx

    Here’s another murder-depravity article:

    “A British man despondent over his sex life and his mounting debt shot his wife and baby daughter to death as they lay in bed together, covered them with a comforter and then bought a one-way ticket home to England, a prosecutor told a jury Friday.”

    I guess his daughter was involved in an elaborate plot with his wife to murder him nefariously. This is clearly a case of self-defense.

    I’ll say it again: A man that despondent will take his own life. The taking of other lives is an indication of something utterly different. No despondency, no post-partum depression, no wish to end it all, will account for it.

    And it’s not just narcissism either. A narcissist will blame others but will not kill them.

    I brought up post-partum depression because the vast majority of women who suffer from it do not murder their babies either. Only 1 in 10,000 even harm their new-born babies? I’ll have to dig up the statistics.

    There is simply something deeper and darker at work here among those who destroy others due to their own loss of control. It is not normal. Thankfully this murder of others during your own spiral downward into suicide is rare, but fearfully becoming more and more common? I simply don’t accept any of the usual excuses I keep hearing.

    Fifteen or so years ago, I was once discussing suicide with a friend over beers and he said, “If I end it, I’m going to the mall with a gun and taking as many people as I can with me.” I blew it off and laughed at him but who knows, perhaps he was serious after all. The words are not the same as the act. He was a disturbed personality. As I think back I can certainly see him capable of it. I have no idea why I remained friends with him for a year or two after that. Hell, perhaps I don’t even know why I was his friend at all.

  • Danny Lemieux

    The Japanese reacted just as they had been trained to do.

    They don’t just have gun control in Japan, they also require you to register any knife larger than a certain size (including steak knives). In pre-Meiji Japan, the rigid caste systems denied the right to any but the samurai class to possess weapons. Most Japanese have had thousands of years of obedience and passivity hammered into their psyches. Unfortunately, the reaction of the Japanese would be mirrored by most people in most “modern” societies and I believe that there are many people here in the U.S. that would want us to emulate them.

    Once, a Japanese friend and colleague asked me about America’s fascination with weapons (I had taught her how to shoot a 9mm – it scared the living daylights out of her…at first).

    I explained that, as individuals, we must first take responsibility for ourselves, including for our own self defense. If I defer this responsibility to others, then I cannot be free, for it is others that will have the power to decide whether I live or die and my life, therefore, would not be my own. I also pointed out that it would be both unrealistic and unjust for me to expect an under-paid agent of the State (i.e., a policeman) to risk their own life (and family) for me under any circumstances, but especially if I am unwilling to take that responsibility upon myself.

    Several months later, she brought the subject up with me again. She told me that, upon her return to Japan, she had a long discussion about it with her husband (she probably showed him her target from the shooting range, as well – her aim was pretty good!). She told me that they had never thought of this issue in those terms before, but that they agreed with me.

    Sometimes, we assume that we all see the world through the same eyes. Sometimes, all it takes is a different perspective to open our eyes.

  • Ymarsakar

    I don’t know what I would do if a maniac headed towards me (or anyone else) with a knife.

    If the martial arts training hasn’t taught you this yet, then you should look up Target Focus Training. Be sure to sign up to their newsletter and ignore the advertisement on the site. But do take a look at the videos.

    How is it, therefore, that this guy was able to inflict such spectacular damage with a knife?

    This guy knew how to use violence and used it. Everybody else didn’t. This means that I’m the adult in a room of 11 year olds. How many 11 year olds can I kill, Book, if I wanted to? How many 11 year olds would die even if you gave them a gun or a knife, because I was able to intimidate them or because they paniced from the psychological trauma of seeing real violence and death?

    In our modern world, a man that knows what real violence is and is willing to carry it out and is in fact, carrying it out, has more power than any crowd of civilian bah bah sheep.

    (Jews, between 1938 and 1945, learned that the guard dogs often do not come.

    Or if they do come eventually, it won’t often help save your daughter, wife, or brother or uncle or whatever. Like Russian roulette. Want to take the odds, then play the game of waiting to be saved. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose.

    Btw, the breitbart link of the employee psycho is the a classic case of uncontrollable rage. In those situations, these people actually are begging you to put them down, because they’re going quietly insane in the head with the anger and they can’t deal with it. And the more they can’t deal with it and the more people leave them alone, the madder they get and the more damage they will do to themselves and others.

    Most people are afraid of violence. They don’t comprehend what it is so when someone engage in violence or rage episodes, they don’t know what to do. They stand around looking because that’s what their instincts tell them (look at violent encounters so you can learn to avoid them or learn to replicate them is the instinctual response according to evolution). They stand around but try to keep a safe distance away from the maniac according to the range they think he can reach. A person with bare hands will be avoided if he is seen walking or running in your direction. A person with a knife will be avoided with more distance on sight. A person with a gun creates even more distance.

    The idea of going into public and attacking a group of strangers (and not foreigners) is almost unthinkable there. If there are more such attacks, I would see it as a sign of radical changes taking place in Japanese society.

    It has more to do with the fact that once one such incident occurs and people see how successful it was, people are going to copy it. Social inhibitions exist so that nobody even gets the idea of doing something anti-social. That’s why the office video shows you people refusing to even get near or restrain the psycho. Society has inhibited people’s physical aggression to a very low point.

    Good for fake liberals and criminals, not so good for law abiding citizens that want to avoid violent encounters. Now there may be an organized effort to disrupt Japan’s society; I can’t say too much on that score since I don’t study Japan’s modern society or politics. An organized attempt would use incentives and legal inhibitions to promote revolutionary zeal and chaos, thus bringing in a new political order more sympathetic to the revolutionary ideals.

    As for the teachers, looks like a socialist phenomenon.

  • Ymarsakar

    I need a comment unspammed, Book. Just the first one with the link, though. The second one without the link should just be deleted.

  • Mike Devx

    Okay, here are the details of victim passivity:


    TOKYO, Japan (AP) — A man police said was on a murder mission plowed into pedestrians with a truck in a crowded Tokyo neighborhood Sunday and then stabbed 17 people in three minutes, killing at least seven in a grisly attack that shocked Japan. […]

    The lunchtime assault — on the seventh anniversary of a mass stabbing in Japan in 2001 — sent thousands of pedestrians into a panic in Tokyo’s crowded Akihabara district, an electronics and video game area wildly popular among the country’s cyber-wise youth.

    A 25-year-old man, Tomohiro Kato, was arrested with blood on his face. Police said Kato provided no motive for the attack — other than he wanted to murder strangers. “The suspect told police that he came to Akihabara to kill people,” said Jiro Akaogi, a spokesman for the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department. “He said he was tired of life. He said he was sick of everything,” Akaogi said.

    The violence began when he crashed a rented, two-ton truck into pedestrians. Kato jumped out and began stabbing the people he’d knocked down with the truck, then turned on horrified onlookers, police said. […]

    Reports said the attacker grunted and roared as he slashed and stabbed at Sunday shoppers crowding a street […]

    “He was screaming as he was stabbing people at random,” an unidentified male witness told public broadcaster NHK.

    A witness also told NHK the suspect dropped his knife after police threatened to shoot him. Amateur video filmed by mobile phone showed policemen overpowering the bespectacled, bloodied suspect.

    It took him three minutes to stab seventeen people. And he stopped only after police arrived and threatened to shoot him. This is extraordinarily sad. We do have here the classic example of Sheep and Wolves.

    I’ll say it again: There are many reasons for suicide. There are none for murdering someone else during your cycling downward to the suicide. I do not accept the reasons for the suicide as justification for the murders. There’s always something deeper and far darker at work.

    Similarly 1 in 10,000 women suffer from post-partum psychosis, and 1 in 25 of them kill their babies. That’s 1 in 250,000 who kill. Yet we are told that ALL women are potential murderers of their own babies. That’s just wrong. I reject it completely.

    Fifteen years ago I was hanging out with a guy over beers and we got on the topic of suicide. He said if he was going “to end it all” he was going to go the mall with a gun and shoot as many people as he could before he “ended it”. I laughed at him, dismissing it as idle talk, but who knows? As I look back on it, I can see there was something simply… off… about his personality. I now think he was capable of it. His was a personality that would NEVER simply kill himself; he would kill others along the way.

    It’s not normal, and there but for the grace of God do NOT go I. Nor you. It simply is not “random bad luck” causing these kinds of murders.

  • Bookworm

    Done, Y! And thanks for being proactive and letting me know when the Spaminator is eating your righteous comments.

  • Ymarsakar

    NIce video. These people need to sign up to the TFT newsletter, at the minimum. Their education is sadly deficient.

  • Ymarsakar

    Thanks for the speedy guardian angel action, Book.

  • Ymarsakar

    I laughed at him, dismissing it as idle talk, but who knows? As I look back on it, I can see there was something simply… off… about his personality. I now think he was capable of it. His was a personality that would NEVER simply kill himself; he would kill others along the way.

    That must be similar to my personality which says mass murderers need to be drawn and quartered before and after the crime. Although more expedient executions may be applicable for those without the time or resources beforehand.

    Might as well make the punishment both fit the crime and be as draconian as you can make it. If mass murderers cook up their ideas because they see folks carrying out executions on tv, and thus more pop up like dragon’s teeth, why not show horrific executions of mass murderers so that mass murderers may perhaps figure out that they need to kill more mass murderers?

    But that won’t prevent all that many murder-suicide wannabes. What will prevent murder-suicide wannabes is video footage of the mass murdering executioner being executed by his victims. That will decrease the number of these mass murder sprees. Someone that still wants to conduct one, can still do so, especially if they can get an assault rifle and some ammo and armored vests, but it’s an arms race like any other race between the enemy and the good.

    They bring up a knife and swish it up, you bring up a firearm and shoot them. They bring up a firearm, you decapitate them and dismember them. Arms races. Life is forever an arms race between those that want to kill and those that just want to survive being killed. Usually the killers, meaning predators, win in the long term.

    And he stopped only after police arrived and threatened to shoot him.

    Obviously he wasn’t “that tired” of life. Those are the kinds of people executions will remove from the face of existence, one way or another.

  • Bookworm

    My pleasure, Y. I appreciate your letting me know what’s going on when my attention wanders….

  • Ymarsakar

    By the way, if there was a true citizen around this knife wielder, he would have executed the knife wielder and saved the state, his fellow citizens, and all of humanity a great deal of trouble, misery, strife, discord, and tragedy.

    That is a citizen’s true duty: to uphold the safety, values, and continuity of their society and nation. Military service is only a small small facet of this duty. Unfortunately, people have been convinced that you can be a parasite and let the police, FBI, and military do things just because you’re a civilian. Will Leftist wonders never cease.

    That is why power comes from the citizens and the people in democracies and republics. If you act like sheep, how can you expect any kind of “power” to come from you? Power don’t come from sheep, power comes from the wool sheared off of sheep and the meat that is stripped off of sheep to be used to power a predator’s metabolism.

    PS. I was refering to the case brought up about a hostage that was passive from Japan.

  • Ymarsakar

    For those that say guns kill more than knives. Consider the scoreboard.

    Police with many many guns=0

    One guy with a knife chasing down people armed with bare hands=17 casualties

    Man, those guns really do kill more people!

  • Ymarsakar

    A person with bare hands will be avoided if he is seen walking or running in your direction. A person with a knife will be avoided with more distance on sight. A person with a gun creates even more distance.

    Just click on the Breitbart link. Watch the Brownian Motion take effect. Watch how the sheep huddle together and move away or closer depending on where the wolf is going.

    It’s an amazing herd instinct, people. Ain’t no wolf pack, that’s for sure.

  • Mike Devx

    A recent article indicated that everyone tried to flee the knife-wielding attacker. No one resisted him. Sheep indeed.

    Here’s a blurb from that article:
    The attack has led to a new bout of soul-searching in a country that prides itself on personal safety, but the Japanese government indicated Monday that it will consider tightening restrictions on access to knives with large blades.

    Here in the USA we are under pressure from gun-control advocates who claim, “If only we can take the guns away from the people, we’ll all be safer! Let the police handle it.”

    In Japan they’re a few steps ahead of us. And you can see the result. Now they are going to ban “large knives”, in order to protect the people. My god, what about samurai swords? Think of the lost heritage. I know, I know it’s all about “knife conceal and carry” laws.

    Eventually they will ban frozen potatoes and towels because someone will wrap a frozen potato in a towel and, whipping it in a frenzy about his head, will go on a rampage.

    The control advocates, at least in Japan, have progressed to the banning of knives. The people take no responsibility for their own safety, believing that the police can protect them, when in reality police can only investigate whatever the crime is AFTER it has been committed, and via apprehensions and convictions hope to keep society stable.

    I’ve said it before, it’s worth saying again: If I have the choice of attending a university class in a lecture hall, and I must choose between the one where guns are not allowed, and the one where the guns are legally allowed and about five or ten of the students are likely to be carrying, I’ll take the class where they are CARRYING. And feel much, much safer.

  • Ymarsakar

    Sheep can be turned into killers if you file their teeth into fangs and attach claws to their feet and limbs.

    Or maybe not.

  • ProtestShooter

    Imagine if somebody had been illegally carrying and had shot the bastard after, oh, five people had been stabbed (so there’s no question of his intention). Would the guy with the gun have been hailed as a hero for saving the other dozen folks from being stabbed or attacked as a villain for having a gun?

    I recently witnessed a robbery where I was too far away to do anything – but somebody snatched and grabbed something and ran through a crowd. Luckily one person realized what happened and stopped him before he got too far through the crowd but the victim and her husband and the first few bystanders just stood there stunned even after he was stopped and it took them a good 30 seconds to realize what had happened and move at all. If the person who stopped the robber was relying on backup from the crowd it wouldn’t have been there in time – luckily it wasn’t necessary.

  • Ymarsakar

    It will depend on what the jury can be convinced of. Given that a jury is much like the majority of citizens in a democracy, in that they can be convinced of anything so long as the attempt is correctly made, all you need is the correct resources and lawyers.

    The law may be designed to protect people, but that’s in the court room. That’s non-existent in the real world. So even though you might get a chance of justice in the court room if you killed the murderer, the murderer was guaranteed freedom out of the court room. Given those odds, the law abiding citizen will always lose out to the law in the long run. The state may win in the long run, but that’s of little comfort to the current generation and the current targets.

    Concerning British law, the prosecutors would have slapped the illegal firearms carrier with illegal firearms carrying and with the intent to kill. They would also have slapped on unjustified and “disproportional force” charges.

    While British law deals with knife killings, what the people in the British law system really cares about is bureaucratic legislation and regulations. It doesn’t matter so much whether someone has killed or not, what matters is how they have killed and for what reasons. Since Sharia has had most of the success in convincing the British law enforcers and legislators that Sharia is justified killing and Sharia justifies causing destruction, it is very easy to see how the British will lash out more against the law abiding citizens should they violate a regulation or law. Since the Brits can’t go into Muslim enclaves, they have to beat on their own to relieve the feeling of helplessness.

    Tony Martin is only one example, and he was wayy back when Sharia wasn’t much on the scene. Consider the changes to British law given current events.

  • socratease

    It seems the warrior spirit hasn’t entirely disappeared in Japan. From Sankei Shinbun via Mainichi Wai Wai:

    Before his name appeared, he was only referred to as a patrol sergeant in the Tokyo Metropolitan Police, age 41, who was on duty at the Akihabara “koban” (police box) on June 8.

    Sergeant Ogino, who appears to be of medium build and height and who wears spectacles, is a 21-year veteran of the MPD. He is said to hold a 3rd-degree black belt in judo. The print and broadcast media has been full of photos, mostly taken at the scene by onlookers with cell phone cameras, in which he is shown pursing, confronting and overpowering Kato.

    When the trouble began, Ogino unhesitatingly took action. This, of course, is what policemen are trained to do; but putting theory into practice is not always easy. Many Japanese cops might serve for an entire career and never be called to do anything more perilous than intercept a bicycle thief.

    According to eyewitnesses, Ogino pursued Kato down a side street and confronted him with an extensible riot baton. Kato resisted, and the two clashed in what was described by one onlooker as looking like “actors in a samurai movie.”

    In a detail left out of most of the news accounts, former prosecutor Atsuyuki Sassa, a well known media commentator, wrote in the Sankei Shinbun’s June 11 “Seiron” column that sergeant’s Ogino’s protective vest was ripped at three points where Kato’s dagger had struck, but was unable to penetrate.

    While extending the riot baton in his left hand, Ogino then backed away from the perpetrator, unholstered his 9mm New Nambu revolver and ordered him to drop his knife. The assailant was then wrestled to the ground by Ogino and two other men, including an off-duty officer in plainclothes from a police station in neighboring Taito-ku Ward.

    In most countries, the name and photo of the heroic cop would be splashed on the front page of every newspaper in the city. But to the best of this writer’s knowledge, it has appeared so far in just one weekly magazine — Shukan Shincho (June 19) — and one newspaper opinion-editorial, by the abovementioned Mr. Sassa. (Who remarked in the same op-ed piece that because the “Electric Town” is a major attraction to foreign tourists, “It’s a relief at least that no foreigners were among the victims.”)

    Shukan Shincho must be credited for its efforts to go where the rest of the media has not. Its short piece (less than one full page of the magazine) quoted two police sources who favorably critiqued Ogino’s arrest technique.

    “Making a perpetrator raise both hands and then sit down on the ground presumes the use of a handgun and could be said to be American-style,” a police source tells the magazine. “This method is also okay in Japan. But Sgt. Ogino should be praised for his judgment in deciding when to draw his revolver, after he’d chased [Kato] away from the main street where there were lots of people, and confirmed that there were no civilians in the vicinity.”

    “His technique was textbook perfect,” a second police source tells the magazine, pointing to photos. “Look at the position of his riot baton. He struck the perp in the solar plexus and rammed him against the wall. He’d been rendered helpless. You can tell from the photo that [Kato] was in agony and about to crumple.”

  • Ymarsakar

    Everywhere you go, the media is the same.