Taiji, Wakayama. A Japanese World Heritage!
When I first arrived in Japan nearly a decade ago, I witnessed a disturbing trend that is somehow considered acceptable social behavior. Cruelty to animals! I was working out at a gym when a TV show appeared on the screens positioned in front of the treadmills. The show titled, Waratte Iitomo was until recently one of Japan’s most popular, and was hosted by an elderly man named Tamori, who for some reason is always wearing sunglasses. On that particular episode the crew rigged a camera over a washing machine. The lid was removed. An octopus was placed inside the machine, which was then turned on the wash cycle. The bewildered creature began attaching its limbs, and suction cups to various parts of the machine in an effort to balance itself. Next, the spin cycle was turned on. The octopus was immediately ripped into pieces as the terrorized creature instinctively projected ink as the only way it knew how to fend off danger. The show’s stars appeared at the top right of the screen. They laughed hysterically, and broke out in a cheer, applauding the sickening segment. The people in the gym thought the matter comical as well.
Not only do the Japanese seem to disrespect marine life, but they also seem to have an aversion for birds, including one known as Mukudori (White-cheeked Starling). The first time I came across the Mukudori, I was walking along the shores of Sendai. There were hundreds of these dead creatures scattered along the beach. I later inquired with Japanese officials as to what caused these birds to die in such great numbers. I learned that the Japanese government intentionally poisoned them in an attempt to get rid of them.
The Mukudori are about the size of a small bat. They fly in large numbers, with great precision, and have the ability to turn on a dime, and in unison. It’s quite enjoyable to watch the Mukudori perform aerial acrobats as they frolic in the late evening before taking refuge at the top of tree branches. The excited chatter they engage in as they communicate their final thoughts before bedding down would make anyone smile. The Japanese despise these birds so much that wherever the Mukudori seek shelter in the limbs of trees, the branches are cut back bare, making it impossible for the birds to have a place to rest, nest, and reproduce.
The Japanese also loathe the blue-black, crow-like raven that inhabits the nation. The Japanese call them karasu, and due to the bird’s incredible resilience, and resourcefulness, they’re considered pesky, and malevolent. They’re not! The karasu are incredibly intelligent, and are worthy of whatever niche they have carved out for themselves in an environment that they are entirely incompatible with. Japanese lore call the karasu, a demon, and a major cause of warmongering.
In Japanese lore, the karasu is depicted as the evil creature Tengu.
In reality, the karasu struggles to survive.
The Japanese immensely fear foxes, which they call kitsune. They even have shrines, which are supposed to protect the nation’s inhabitants from the evils that the fox represents. The fear of foxes is irrational, and based entirely on folklore that the Japanese craned from ancient China. The Japanese held on to all of the negative aspects of the traditional stories, and left behind all of the endearing tales, (nine to be exact). Ironically, the Japanese believe that foxes have the ability to morph into human form, and are capable of deceiving someone into doing acts they otherwise would not, such as allowing themselves to be fleeced of the hard earned money that they horde.
A child runs away from a kitsune shrine located in Yonezawa, Japan.
Fishermen on the Nagara River have been given the honorary title of “Cormorant Fishermen of the Imperial Household Agency.” After first capturing cormorants, the fishermen in Gifu, and Seki resort to tying ropes around the necks of these birds, which are then forced to dive into lakes, and rivers for fish. Once a fish is caught, the bird instinctively attempts to swallow it, but as it does, the fishermen yanks the bird by the neck back into the boat, and while choking it, forces the cormorant to regurgitate (vomit) the fish back up. It’s a sickening sight to see, yet the Japanese arrive in throngs as tourist for the opportunity to witness what the Imperial House of Japan sanctions as a national treasure. Matsuo Basho, a famous Japanese poet was so enamored with this activity that he wrote two haiku poems about it.
An illustration of Keisai Eisen’s cormorant fishing on the Nagara River.
Do not proceed further if you don’t want to learn the truth about the Japanese Macaque. National Geographic Magazine seems to publish an article annually on the snow monkeys, but Jigokudani Yaen Koen, the location that the primates inhabit is anything but natural. The snow monkeys are domesticated, and remain at the location solely because the proprietors, who charge an admission fee, feed them rye seed several times a day. The animals lounge around in an artificial pool as they wait for the next handout. Rye seed is not a natural part of the Macaque’s diet, and bathing is not part of the snow monkey’s natural behavior. The photograph below quickly dispels any thoughts that what I have stated is not based in fact.
The only thing wild at Jigokudani Yaen Koen is the behavior of the visitors that push, and shove each other about as they jockey about shooting Macaque.
I was in Enoshima recently, walking along the trash-riddled shore, noticing that the Japanese never seem to notice such things. If one took the time, as I have, to draw attention to the massive amount of debris that litters the beaches of Japan, the Japanese are quick to blame it on the Chinese, and the Koreans. How the Chinese, and Koreans manage to pollute the Pacific Ocean side of Japan remains one of the great mysteries regarding the secretive island nation.
Suddenly, the local police began broadcasting over loud speakers. The commotion echoed throughout the entire community, and inundated anyone within range. There was no escaping it! The spokesperson rambled on about a seventy-four year old man who had been missing for a few hours. It wasn’t long before they discovered the senior citizen inebriated, and not too far from a dolphinarium located between Enoshima, and Kugenumakaigankoen. Before the speakers finally fell silent, I was already pondering other falsehoods that have become part of Japanese myth. Concern for the elderly is but one of them. The immense photographic collection I’ve amassed of the aged homeless huddled in blue tarp tents along polluted rivers bares witness to that.
In the not too distant past some of the elderly of Japan were considered an onus to their offspring, who no longer wanted the economic burden of caring for them. Many were taken to the foothills of Mt. Fuji, dumped like so much garbage, and left to their own fate, which was undoubtedly death by exposure, dehydration, starvation, and whatever it was that had already been afflicting them. Historical facts such as the example provided here is not the kind of narrative that the Japanese tourism industry appreciates popularized about its culture. The Japanese would rather the west remain awash in the endless imaginings of Edo glory, of mercenary codes of honor, and of gutting oneself after being humiliated in a trifle. Today it’s mountains of garbage that surrounds the national treasure that UNESCO has endorsed as a World Heritage site. Mountains of discarded debris, and an endless array of decaying corpses that sway at the end of ropes tied about the necks of those who chose suicide over continuing to exist in the perpetual farce the Japanese are forced to endure. In Japan, life in any form has always been cheap. After all, all things are impermanent, according to the Shinto cult rhetoric the country connects itself with.
I could elucidate endlessly about the backward mindset of the nation of Nihon. I could spew vitriol over price fixing schemes where billions were bilked out of hard working Americans who were always bamboozled into believing that Japan is an honest nation. I could fume hysterically about Toyota supplying ISIS, and the Taliban with an endless sea of brand new vehicles, factory equipped with machine gun mounts, and bulletproof siding. Instead, I’ll take this opportunity to focus on a recent incident that took place between Japanese police, and another elderly man. A man who is internationally acclaimed for exposing egregious immorality, while at the same time trying to prolong life in oceans that are fast being drained of it. A man who has a street named after him in the city of South Miami where he resides. I’m referring Ric O’Barry, and his recent false arrest, and subsequent torture in Nachikatsuura, an inconsequential village located in Wakayama Prefecture.
Ric O’Barry is the founder, and director of the Dolphin Project. You’d have to have been held without habeas corpus, and enduring waterboarding, forced rectal feedings, and the threatened rape of your minor child at one of the black sites operated by the U.S., and its allies to not know that Mr. O’Barry was the subject of an Academy Award winning documentary that was more than thirty years in the making.
At approximately 8:30 p.m. on August 31st, 2015 Mr. O’Barry was detained by Japanese authorities under the guise of not being in possession of his passport. The government official who staged this ruse goes by the name of Takimoto. He’s employed at the Shigu Police Station In Wakayama. The police charged Mr. O’Barry for being in violation of the Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Act (ICRRA). The ICRRA is an antiquated, and racist law that requires foreigners to be in possession of their passport at all times. The problem that arises for the Japanese authorities is that Mr. O’Barry was in possession of his passport, and the police who arrested him knew it all along. Mr. O’Barry was also in possession of an international driver’s license. Under the ICRRA an international driver’s license is an acceptable form of alternative identification. Regardless, Mr. O’Barry was arrested anyway.
Thankfully, the international community acted swiftly on Mr. O’Barry’s behalf. Including U.S. congressmen, respected human rights organizations, and international leaders. The downside is that there are numerous foreigners currently detained in Japanese prisons, and detention centers who have not committed any crime, yet are currently facing criminal proceedings in front of one of the world’s most corrupt, deceitful, and biased judiciaries. Unfortunately, for those victims of state sponsored terror, they don’t have the internationally notoriety that Mr. O’Barry had at his disposal.
Arrival in Japan
Earlier on the same day of the false arrest Mr. O’Barry arrived at Narita Airport. Although Mr. O’Barry has never committed a crime in Japan, he is always taken into custody, detained, and interrogated by petty Ministry of Justice officials who don’t seem to have the mental capacity to recognize the limitations of the power granted to them courtesy of a constitution imposed on them by the United States, after soundly being defeated at the end of World War II. That constitution includes such terms as free speech, freedom of association, and equal protection. It also calls for the right to have access to legal counsel, and two clauses that forbid the use of torture.
After Mr. O’Barry was reluctantly released from Narita Airport, he headed for Taiji. His first stop was a voluntary appearance at the police station where he met with Takimoto, and allowed his passport to be photocopied. Mr. O’Barry also let the police know what his itinerary was to be. It must be noted that there is no legal requirement for Mr. O’Barry to do this. Shortly thereafter Mr. O’Barry was eating dinner at a restaurant with acquaintances from Phuket, Thailand. The fact that there were several witnesses to what transpired that evening is quite significant, as the story they tell is entirely different from that of the police.
During dinner Mr. O’Barry noticed that he was being stalked, filmed, and conspicuously monitored. Mr. O’Barry noted that he had never seen any of the photographers before, and suspected they were in reality undercover officers. At the end of dinner, Mr. O’Barry, and his companions entered the vehicle he had rented, and headed to the hotel where he had reserved a room. The hotel was a mere 200m (650’) from the restaurant. This means that it would have taken less than one minute to drive from the restaurant to the hotel parking lot. Regardless, by the time Mr. O’Barry arrived at the hotel, the police had already barricaded the entrance. The photographers at the restaurant were already at the hotel, had their equipment set up, and were prepared to shoot what was about to transpire. Nearly a dozen police swarmed the vehicle, and forced Mr. O’Barry out.
What occurred next contradicts the false statements Takimoto reported to the Japanese media, most notably NHK. NHK is a blatant propaganda tool that officials use to keep the Japanese people ill-informed, or not informed at all on just about every important topic under the sun. It’s ironic the Japanese media would even bother making any effort to cover the arrest of Mr. O’Barry, as the media in Japan has blacked out any coverage whatsoever regarding, The Cove documentary. Theaters refused to show the film, and universities nationwide refused any guest appearances, or even free viewings of the film. Yet, as unimportant as the matter seemed to be to the Japanese, somehow Mr. O’Barry’s arrest managed to make headline news.
According to Takimoto, the police claimed they received an “anonymous” call that Mr. O’Barry “may” have been driving under the influence of alcohol. Given the short duration of time, the phone call made by an anonymous source must have been made prior to Mr. O’Barry entering the rented vehicle, and making the short drive to the hotel. The following is a direct translation of a statement Takimoto made to the Japanese media. “We received an anonymous call that he (O’Barry) may have been drinking alcohol and driving, so officers were dispatched to find him, and check his breath.” Takimoto then went on to claim, “He (O’Barry) smelled like alcohol, but the reading (on the breathalyzer) was negative.”
A breathalyzer test is a piece of evidence that must be preserved when a criminal investigation is underway. In Japan it’s actually a criminal offense, punishable by imprisonment, and fine for anyone, including the police, to disclose such matters to the media. See Criminal Procedure 281(4) and (5). Takimoto knew this legal requirement at the time he made his statement to the media. Takimoto should be held criminally responsible for violating these rules. Further, Takimoto knew that Mr. O’Barry passed the breathalyzer test, and made his statement to the media for no other purpose but to defame Mr. O’Barry. As a result, the Shigu Police Department should be held civilly liable under Japan’s strict laws regarding the utterance of statements made to harm another’s reputation. In Japan, liability results when a defaming statement is made. Damage is presumed, regardless if the statement was true or not.
Anonymity of informants, and statements not based on fact
There are two important assertions in Mr. O’Barry’s false arrest. The first being a phone call made to the police by an anonymous source. Second, that the anonymous source made a statement claiming that Mr. O’Barry “may” be driving under the influence of alcohol. An anonymous phone call to the police, alleging facts does not give police probable cause to make a warrantless stop. Further, this phantom caller only stated that Mr. O’Barry may have been driving under the influence of alcohol. Such statements do not give police probably cause to detain someone, or even the lessor reasonable suspicion standard required to make a legal stop.
Japan’s Criminal Code is craned from the U.S. Federal Criminal Code
- Probable cause: Probable cause is a reasonable belief, based on facts that can be articulated, and which is required before a suspect can be arrested, and prosecuted in a criminal proceeding. Before a suspect can be arrested the police must possess enough facts that would lead a reasonable person to believe that the charge is accurate. In criminal cases there are two aspects of probable cause that are significant. First, police must have probable cause BEFORE they may search a person or a person’s property, and they must possess it BEFORE they may arrest a person. There are some exceptions. Police may briefly detain, and conduct a limited search of a person in a public place if THE POLICE have a reasonable suspicion that the person being detained had committed a crime. A police officer possesses reasonable suspicion if THAT officer has enough knowledge that would lead a reasonably cautious person to believe that criminal activity had, or was occurring at that particular time, and that the person detained played a part in that particular crime. The lack of probable cause means the police never had a reasonable belief, or sufficient evidence to detain Mr. O’Barry. Where police lack probable cause, the person detained (Mr. O’Barry) may file a false imprisonment, and malicious prosecution suit. False arrest, and kidnapping are interchangeable terms. False arrest applies to the law of torts, where kidnapping applies to criminal law. Japanese police acted illegally under color of law, and kidnapped Mr. O’Barry for the sole purpose of questioning him on matters unrelated to what he was arrested for. This is in fact, a kidnapping.
- Anonymous sources: An anonymous phone call to the police by an unknown source where the caller claims that someone MAY have committed a crime does not give police probable cause to detain, and interrogate someone. Further, the person that must have knowledge that a crime has occurred is the police themselves, NOT a third party “anonymous” source. This raises other legal questions such as, the mental capacity of the anonymous caller, and the veracity of the caller’s statement. Given the information that Takimoto told the media, the police clearly made an illegal detention, and subsequent arrest. Mr. O’Barry should never have been detained. Further, once Mr. O’Barry tested negative for alcohol consumption the police should have released him immediately.
During my interview with Mr. O’Barry he stated that the police were baffled, even disappointed that he had passed the breathalyzer test. Thereafter, Mr. O’Barry sought to be released, however the police refused to let him go. Instead, the police huddled, and conspired as to how to proceed. The initial illegal detention then turned into an absurd allegation that Mr. O’Barry was not in possession of his passport, which Takimoto had personally seen, and photocopied, a mere two hours earlier.
Mr. O’Barry was placed under arrest, restrained with double lock handcuffs, and forced into a police car, and taken into custody. Mr. O’Barry’s rented vehicle was thereafter unnecessarily impounded. I asked Mr. O’Barry if he was served a warrant regarding seizure of the vehicle. He stated that he did not. Japan has strict warrant requirements regarding police seizing someone’s property. The police must obtain a valid search warrant issued by a judge. There must be a showing that the property was used in a criminal capacity. The breathalyzer test exonerated Mr. O’Barry of that, as he was clearly not driving under the influence. Therefore, the vehicle seizure was illegal, as the police could not make a rational connection between the alleged passport violation, and driving a vehicle. Further, Mr. O’Barry was in possession of an international driver’s license, which made it perfectly legal to drive the vehicle. The identification was also a valid form of identification.
Detention in Japan’s Daiyo Kangoku
Japan’s Daiyo Kangoku is a system of police custody condemned by the U.S. Department of State, the United Nations, and Amnesty International. Daiyo Kangoku detention is Japan’s version of black sites. Detainees literally disappear off of the face of the earth. Detainees are not permitted to contact anyone on their behalf, or to obtain legal representation. There is no bail, and detainees are interrogated, threatened, physically, and psychologically tortured, for twenty-three days, and for twenty-four hours a day. Detainees are almost always coerced into signing false confessions. Regardless, 99.99% of indictments result in conviction. This is not the exception; it is the rule, and Japan’s corrupt judiciary will nod, and wink at these illegitimate, and reprehensible proceedings at every turn.
Mr. O’Barry knew none of what is described above at the time of his detention. Further, the interrogations are not audio, or videotape recorded. Such conditions violate international law. Mr. O’Barry was physically, and psychologically tortured the entire time he was detained. Upon arrival at the police station the double lock handcuffs remained on Mr. O’Barry’s wrists. He was tied up with black nylon rope, and led around like a dog on a leash, not unlike the infamous photos that were taken by guards at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. Mr. O’Barry was booked, fingerprinted, and had his mug shot taken. Mr. O’Barry was then forced into an isolation chamber, which was stifling hot. He was denied access to an interpreter, or an attorney. Still handcuffed, and tied with rope around his waist, Mr. O’Barry was then tied to a chair. Regardless, of the fact that none of the Japanese officials could communicate with Mr. O’Barry, and that no interpreter, or legal representative was present, Takimoto, and other cops tried to force Mr. O’Barry to sign numerous false confessions, which they had prepared, and were written only in Japanese. Mr. O’Barry could not understand anything the police were saying, nor what information the written confessions contained. Eventually, he would come to learn that none of the questions had anything to do whatsoever about his passport. Every one of the false statements prepared by the police attempted to implicate Mr. O’Barry as an eco-terrorist, and a member of the Sea Shepard Conservation Society (SSCS). The Institute of Cetacean Research (ICR), a front group for Japan’s state-sponsored whaling program deems the SSCS a terrorist organization. The International Court of Justice however, has ruled the ICR a fraudulent organization, and under the auspices of science, is in reality a commercial whaling enterprise. Japan can no longer enter international waters for whaling purposes. A spokesman for Greenpeace UK, Willie MacKenzie welcomed the ICJ’s decision, “The myth that these hunts were in any way scientific can now be dismissed once and for all.” New Zealand Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully “made it very clear” that Japanese ships are not welcome in New Zealand’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), and has called Japan’s violations into New Zealand’s territorial waters entirely unacceptable, and disrespectful. Australia now sends surveillance plane to the Southern Ocean to monitor Japanese whaling ships.
Japan and false confessions
During the initial twenty-three day period, nearly 95% of detainees succumb to the relentless onslaught of threats, and intimidations. During the police investigation period a detainee is not allowed to gather evidence on their behalf, obtain bail, or have contact with an attorney, or their family. Once indicted detainees are intentionally refused the opportunity to raise a valid defense, or to have a fair hearing in front of an unbiased judiciary. It is under these conditions that Japan obtains a 99.99% conviction rate. The U.S. Department of State, the United Nation, and Amnesty International release annual reports condemning these counterfeit proceedings, yet they continue unabated.
At one point after hours of interrogation, while handcuffed, and tied to a chair, Mr. O’Barry told his interrogators that he was seventy five years old, (two weeks shy of seventy six), and that he had four prescription that were at the hotel, and which he was in need of. The police refused to retrieve them. I asked Mr. O’Barry if there would have been dire health related consequences if he were refused medication for a prolonged period? He stated yes, and disclosed some of those health related issues. Regardless, the police continued to deny Mr. O’Barry his medications, and continued to press him to sign false confessions for matters unrelated to what he was arrested for. Mr. O’Barry was not questioned whatsoever about his passport.
After all night of being dragged in, and out of the interrogation room, Mr. O’Barry became quite ill. He laid his head down on the desk, as the police continued to try, and force him to sign false confessions. When it became obvious that Mr. O’Barry’s health was deteriorating, the police untied him from the interrogation chair, and thereafter, while still in handcuffs, tied him to a wheel chair. Mr. O’Barry was placed in a van under multiple guard watch, and driven to a local hospital. In that state, Mr. O’Barry was wheeled through the front entrance of the hospital as a public spectacle. Mr. O’Barry called the entire proceedings “an exercise in humiliation.” Thereafter, Mr. O’Barry was taken back to the police station, returned to the same blistering hot interrogation room, and subjected to the same abhorrent interrogation proceedings, while handcuffed, and tied to a chair. The police continued to try, and coerce Mr. O’Barry into signing false confessions, in Japanese, a language that he does not communicate in, or understand. The false confession statements continued to implicate Mr. O’Barry as a member of Sea Shepard Conservation Society, and as an eco-terrorist.
Mr. O’Barry finally had enough, and ridiculed the corrupt cops, and asked pointedly, “Do people really sign these statements?” He told the police, again, and again that he wasn’t going to sign anything. When it was apparent that the police were not going to relent until Mr. O’Barry signed one of their prepared statements he said, “I don’t care if you shoot me. I’m too old for this. I’m tired, and I’m going to sleep.” Mr. O’Barry attempted to lie down on the floor while still tied to the chair. The police forced him up, and carried him to a bare cell. Mr. O’Barry was left tied up with black nylon rope, and in handcuffs for nearly twenty-four hours. During my interview with Mr. O’Barry he stated that the conditions the other detainees were held in couldn’t be regarded as anything less than torture. “They (other detainees) were forced to kneel in the center of the bare cells, and to remain silent at all times. No one was allowed to get up, or to go to the bathroom without first seeking approval. The lights were left at all times, which made it impossible to get any sleep.”
Word got out rapidly that Mr. O’Barry was being detained under false pretenses. International pressure mounted, and police reluctantly released Mr. O’Barry. Upon release, Takimoto handed Mr. O’Barry his passport, which the police had in their possession the entire time he was detained. I asked Mr. O’Barry if he had realized at that time that the police had somehow come in possession of his passport, and refused to disclose this fact to him? He stated, “I was numb. I was so exhausted from the ordeal that I was unable to think about anything. It didn’t occur to me until much later.”
After being released Mr. O’Barry went to Taiji, and witnessed the latest Japanese fishing technology, which includes the use of a device that looks like a large ice pick being forced into a dolphin’s blowhole. The device stabs into the blow hole repeatedly, ripping apart the breathing apparatus. Thereafter, a plug is hammered into the blowhole to prevent the marine mammal’s blood from saturating the cove. The dolphins then drown in their own blood, which fills up inside their head.
On one hand the Taiji fishermen state that there is nothing improper about what they are doing. However, on the other hand, they take enormous measures to try, and cover up what they are doing, and the barbarity of the procedures they engage in.
Release and subsequent harassment
Immediately after being released from police custody, the police followed Mr. O’Barry everywhere he went. They called his hotel room constantly, and pulled him over as he drove the rented car. Mr. O’Barry stated that he believes that his hotel room, and the rented vehicle were bugged. The police continuously pulled the vehicle over, and tried to intimidate him into returning to the police station, and aiding them in their “ongoing investigation about him not being in possession of his passport.” Mr. O’Barry videotape recorded each, and every one of these encounters. Thereafter, Mr. O’Barry hired an attorney to force the police to cease in harassing him. The following text is an email communication that took place between Mr. O’Barry, and attorney T. Takano.
On Sep 8, 2015, at 5:36 PM, T. Takano <EMAIL ADDRESS REDACTED> wrote:
I talked with Mr. Takimoto of Shigu Police Station, who is in charge of your case.
He said: His translator had called you today. He wanted you to make a statement of your personal history for the charge of non-carrying passport. I said everybody knows Mr. O’Barry’s personal history so that he need not make any statement about it, and that my client would not make any statement without his counsel present. As I advised you in our phone conversation, if they (Takimoto) call you again, just respond by telling them you don’t want to be questioned without your counsel present.
Sincerely yours, T. Takano
Japan’s unjustified hatred and fear of foreigners
Mr. O’Barry isn’t the only foreigner to be treated with hate, violent assault, and intimidation by Japanese authorities. In February of 2014, Martyn Stewart, a journalist for the BBC was detained at Osaka airport. Stewart was accused of being a Sea Shepard Conservation Society member, and an eco-terrorist. Sound familiar?
Mr. Stewart was subjected to the same criminality under the color of law as Mr. O’Barry. Mr. Stewart was illegally detained, falsely accused, falsely charged, starved, frozen, mistreated, and interrogated by authorities that couldn’t communicate with him. Police tried to coerce Mr. Stewart into signing false statements that stated he was a member of Sea Shepard Conservation Society, and an eco-terrorist. After going through a futile appeal process in front of a protectionist judiciary, who are equally as corrupt as the Japan’s police, and prosecutors, Mr. Stewart was deported. The following are segments from posts that Mr. Stewart left on social media while held in detention. “I’m freezing cold, it is as though I’ve killed someone, no pillow, no bedding, no towel to dry myself. They look through a hole in the door every 15-30 minutes to see what I’m doing. They claim that I’m Sea Shepherd. I have been spat on. I had a knife held to my chin, yet I’m the terrorist!”
When I inquired into Mr. Stewart’s personal experiences in Japan he responded by saying, “I consider the Japanese extremely racist. I have been spat on. Threatened in front of police, and they did nothing about it. I had a knife held to my throat while a cop filmed, waiting for me to retaliate, so I could be charged with assault!”
Japan’s professed low crime rate
When a nation like Japan brags relentlessly about having a low crime rate, it must be noted that most criminal activity in the nation is in reality perpetrated as hate crimes against foreigners (which the Japanese media does not cover whatsoever), and government malfeasance. Iwao Hakamada spent forty-eight years on death row for a crime the police, prosecutors, and judiciary knew he had not committed. Japan’s death row is internationally rebuked as physical, and psychological torture. Those who find themselves in that precarious situation are held in isolation, and subjected to 24 hour a day lockdown. They are cut off from communicating with the outside world, even with their own family. When the time of execution comes the condemned receives no notice save for a knock on the cell door stating, “It’s time!” Death comes in the form of a hangman’s noose. As in nearly every case on death row, Hakamada finally relented, and signed a false confession that the police, and prosecutors prepared for him. The prosecutors intentionally withheld evidence that they knew would have exonerated the man. Japan’s judiciary was equally culpable as they eagerly accepted whatever the corrupt officials vomited in their laps.
After such a disgrace, one would think Japanese officials had humiliated themselves to the point of self-inflicted disembowelment. No, such luck! Double jeopardy is an alien concept to the Ministry of Justice in Japan. If prosecutors fail to beat a false confession out of someone to aid in obtaining a false conviction the first time around, and somehow the defendant is not convicted amongst the 99.99%, prosecutors are allowed a second go at it.
Intentionally misleading, and wrongful convictions of foreigners in Japan
Govinda Mainali spent sixteen years of a life sentence after being convicted of murdering a Japanese woman. On a retrial Japan’s High Court ruled that prosecutors intentionally withheld crucial DNA evidence that could have exonerated the man. Japan’s Ministry of Justice handled the embarrassment by immediately deporting Mainali for “overstaying his visa by sixteen years.” Even after Mainali was sent back to Nepal, Japanese prosecutors continued to harass the man, threatening to force him to return, and face yet another retrial. Regardless, the Ministry of Justice was required to compensate Mainali to the tune of 68 million yen. Mainali was arrested, accused, and convicted solely because he was the only foreigner that lived in the same building with the woman. What was the evidence the prosecutors intentionally withheld at trial? The woman was gang raped, and had multiple semen samples inside her vagina. None of which was Mainali’s. The woman also had multiple DNA samples under her fingernails where she had clawed at her murderer’s flesh. Again, none of those numerous samples were Mainali’s either.
If a foreigner is convicted of even a petty offense in Japan, they are subjected to immediate deportation. This is true, even if that person has a Japanese spouse, and children. This means Japan’s counterfeit brand of justice not only victimizes those who are falsely accused, and convicted of crimes they have not committed, but also their children, spouses, and families as well. The Japanese call children who have foreign parents “hafus.” This is racist jargon where children with only one Japanese parent are considered inferior. Japanese corporations blacklist these children from ever being hired as employees, solely on grounds they are not “Japanese.”
There are other cases in Japan, which have drawn international consternation. State-sponsored race hate crimes such as that of Abubakar Suraj, whose tortured, mutilated, and murdered body was discovered gagged, hog tied, and slumped over in a seat on a plane bound for Egypt, is but one such example. When passengers noticed the dead man slumped over on the plane, the pilot was notified, and he refused to take off from the airport until Suraj’s body was removed. But for the actions of the pilot, this story would have never seen the light of day.
In a civil proceeding regarding Suraj’s murder, the Tokyo District Court ruled that immigration officials had murdered the man. In a previous hearing, which resulted in gross injustice, and the continuation of Suraj’s detention, a Tokyo Court ruled that Suraj’s wife had a job, and therefore no need of a foreign husband. Their twenty-year marriage was never even a consideration for the discriminatory nitwit who was adorned in a black robe at the time of his ruling. None of the ten cops who tortured, and murdered Suraj were ever brought to justice by the Chiba prosecutors who themselves have a long history of incompetence, and corruption, and who knowingly file fabricated charges to aid in obtaining false convictions. Suraj’s wife wasn’t even told how her husband died, until she sued the Ministry of Justice, and prevailed. “The death of this man is criminal abuse of power,” said Junpei Yamamura, a doctor who visits detainees in prison, and who examined Suraj’s body after his death. The Ghanaian Embassy refused to accept the Japanese government’s letter of apology.
Ministry of Justice officials speak out against Japan’s corrupt criminal justice system
I have reported in the past on the Japanese mindset toward non-Japanese. I personally met with, and interviewed a former Yokohama city prosecutor named, Hiroshi Ichikawa. Ichikawa was fired after making death threats to a detainee in the Saga City Agricultural Co-op case. Ichikawa knowingly filed false charges in that case, and after he had a difficult time obtaining a written confession he put a sharp object to the eye of the detainee, and threatened to pull it out, He stated, “We’ll fucking beat you to death, you bastard!” This was, and still is the kind of behavior that prosecutors in Japan engage in on a regular basis. Ichikawa gave a stunningly candid account of the reality of training that prosecutors receive. He disclosed that, “We (prosecutors) were taught that yakuza, and foreigners have no human rights.” Think about that for a moment. Let that sink in. In Japan, police, and prosecutors lump together all foreigners with gangsters who engage in extortion, racketeering, child pornography, prostitution, and murder. Ichikawa stated that, “Prosecutors are instructed to make up confessions on their own, and then force the suspect to sign it.” He also said, “While being trained in this way, I came to agree that these kinds of things were only natural.”
In a book titled, Desperate Court, retired judge Hiroshi Segi wrote that the entire body of Japan’s judiciary is corrupt, and must be forcefully ejected from office. Segi’s exposé ushered in Supreme Court Chief Justice, Hironobu Takesaki sudden retirement. Takesaki quit as Chief Justice without giving any prior notice. He also left behind a handsome pension that was but a few months away from realization. The following is what Takesaki had to say when he was appointed to the court, “As a judge of the court of last resort, I will strive to make a rational judgment while hearing opinions of the parties from a neutral and fair perspective and taking into consideration the course of history.” I contacted Takesaki to obtain a statement on his thoughts about Segi’s book, and the topic of this article, but he declined to comment. In fact, he didn’t respond at all.
In the past year several other Supreme Court justices have stepped down in disgrace. Consider the massive amount of coerced confessions, and deceptive convictions, and an entirely corrupt judiciary, while Prime Minister Abe has raised the execution rate by more than 15%. According to Amnesty International only a small number of countries carry out the vast majority of senseless state-sponsored executions. Japan is right up there at the forefront with Saudi Arabia, which chooses beheadings, and crucifixions.
The Torture Victims Prevention Act, a legal remedy available in U.S. Federal Court
The Torture Victims Prevention Act (TVPA) is a powerful U.S. federal law that allows anyone to bring action against a foreign government, which uses any form of torture attempting to extract a confession. Under the TVPA, an individual who, under actual or apparent authority, or color of law, of any foreign nation, subjects an individual to torture shall, in a civil action, be liable for damages to that individual. Torture is defined as any act, directed against an individual in the offender’s custody or physical control, by which severe pain or suffering, other than pain or suffering arising only from or inherent in, or incidental to, lawful sanctions, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on that individual for such purposes as obtaining from that individual, information, or a confession, punishing that individual for an act that individual has committed, or is suspected of having committed, intimidating or coercing that individual for any reason based on discrimination of any kind. This includes any mental pain or suffering caused by or resulting from the intentional infliction or threatened infliction of severe physical pain or suffering. This act also covers procedures calculated to disrupt profoundly the senses or the personality of the detainee.
The most widely accepted definition of torture is that set out under Article 1 of the United Nations Convention Against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment. The government of any territory is ultimately responsible for any form of torture that occurs within its boundaries.
“Torture means any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as to obtain from them information or a confession, punishing an act they may have committed or is suspected of having committed, or intimidating or coercing them, or for any reason based on discrimination of any kind, when such pain or suffering is inflicted by or at the instigation of or with the consent or acquiescence of a public official or other person acting in an official capacity. It does not include pain or suffering arising only from, inherent in or incidental to lawful sanctions.”
Psychological torture, and ill treatment often have long-lasting consequences for victims. Torture includes being placed in isolation, threats, humiliation, and witnessing the torture of others. Mr. O’Barry was subjected to each one of these forms of torture. Japan ratified Article 1 of the United Nations Convention Against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment. Ratification of the convention obligates the Japanese government to assert responsibility for the prevention of torture, and to redress victims.
Who are the perpetrators of torture? By definition, torture is inflicted by or at the instigation of or with the consent or acquiescence of a public official acting in an official capacity. Those most likely to be involved in torture include prison officers, detention staff, police, health professionals, prosecutors, and judges.
The White-cheeked Starling.
Jones. How did the day of your false arrest begin?
O’Barry. I arrived in Japan on Sept. 30th, as this is the day before the annual dolphin hunt begins in Japan. As usual, as soon I exit the plane, I’m taken into custody, put in a room that has no furnishings, just a primitive looking concrete cage. I get grilled like I’m a criminal, and I’m detained for several hours in prison like conditions. Each time, I go through the same routine. I’m asked questions as to where my destination will be, as if they didn’t already know. Basically, the Japanese immigration attempts to trip me up, and find some kind of reason as to not allow me to enter Japan. I get questions such as, are you here on business, when my visa states that I’m here as a tourist.
Jones. What happened when they let you go from Narita airport?
O’Barry. When I finally was allowed to leave, I proceeded to Taiji. The first thing I always do is go to the police station, show them my identification, and let them know what my plans are. After that, I went to a restaurant. In the past, there were never any Japanese media in Taiji. The Japanese aren’t interested in this story whatsoever. But this time, the restaurant was full of photographers. The restaurant is about 200 meters from the hotel where I was staying, and when I left the restaurant, the photographers called police. That is what I’ve been told.
Jones. What happened after exiting the restaurant?
O’Barry. I was eating with a group from Phuket, Thailand. They were in Japan to let officials know they don’t want Taiji dolphins sold in Thailand. Before we arrived at the hotel, the photographers were already there. Police vehicles barricaded the hotel parking lot. It was obviously a set up from the start. I was pulled over by a dozen police cars, and forced out of the car I was driving. About ten officers approached me. Immediately the police demanded I give them a Breathalyzer test. I did! In Japan, DUI is 1.5. I blew 0.0. The police didn’t want to let me go, so the officer that I had already shown my passport to just a couple hours earlier, demanded to see my passport. I looked in the vehicle where I knew I had put it, but it wasn’t there. I was immediately arrested for not carrying my passport. I was handcuffed, and taken into custody, and the police towed, and impounded the car, even though it was already at the hotel where I was staying.
Jones. Did they tell you where they were taking you?
Jones. What happened when you arrived at the station?
O’Barry. Throughout the night I was taken in, and out of a cell. Again, and again I was tied up with black nylon ropes around my waist. I was handcuffed, and taken into interrogation. Each time I was tied to a chair. About the third time I said, “Look, I’m 75 years old. I can’t do this any more.” After that I kicked the chair out from under me, and it broke. I fell to the floor. They picked me up, and carried me back to the cell. There was no furniture, or any bedding. Nothing, just an empty cell. The other prisoners had to kneel exactly in the middle of the cell. I was witnessing torture. It can’t be described as anything else. After that, I refused to cooperate.
Jones. When you were being interrogated were they questioning you about your passport?
O’Barry. No, only matters related to the dolphin issues. They tried unsuccessfully to connect me to Sea Shepard, and claims that I’m an eco-terrorist.
Jones. How different was their treatment of you once you were out of the public eye, and behind closed doors?
O’Barry. Pretending to be respectful.
Jones. We have the same birthdate, so I know you were two weeks away from being 76.
O’Barry. I have health issues. I take four medications, and I need those medications. The police refused to get me my prescriptions that were at the hotel. They said we have to take you to the hospital if you have to have any medications. Handcuffed, they tied me to a wheelchair, and took me to a public hospital. We entered in the main area. The entire thing was an exercise in humiliation. At first, I thought this was because I couldn’t locate my passport. But, I also had an international drivers license on me. When I was released I was told that they (the police) found it (the passport) in the glove box. This was entirely suspicious, as it was not where I knew it was.
Jones. What other proceedings did you have to go through?
O’Barry. I was booked, photographed, and fingerprinted. Two guys with a flashlight examined every orifice of my body. Three guys stood over me as I tried to piss.
Jones. Was there an interpreter?
O’Barry. No, not when I needed one. One finally showed up on the next day. But, arrived too late.
Jones. What else did the cops do?
O’Barry. They only spoke Japanese so I don’t know what they were trying to say. All night long they kept writing things in Japanese, and trying to force me to sign whatever it was that they were writing down. Nothing was about the passport. They were trying to force me to sign a statement that I was a member of Sea Shepard.
Jones. You mean the police were intentionally trying to force you to sign a statement, a confession of some kind that was not related to what you were arrested for? And they were communicating to you verbally, and in written form only in Japanese?
Jones. Do you speak Japanese?
O’Barry. Of course not.
Jones. Did you have any idea what they were trying to force you to sign?
O’Barry. They were trying to write a statement, about ten times, in Japanese. I had no idea what they were writing, and they wanted me to sign each one of those statements. I said, “Are you are kidding me? Who in the hell would do that?” They kept doing it all night long. Finally, I put my head on the desk, and ignored them, and they carried me back to the cell again.
Jones. How many times did they keep bringing you back to the cell?
O’Barry. I don’t know. Many times. They did it all night long. Finally, I told them I was too tired, and going to sleep. I broke their chair, and laid on the floor.
Jones. Did they tell you they had your passport all along?
O’Barry. They never told me they had my passport.
Jones. How did you learn they had your passport?
O’Barry. Two of my team members told me. My passport somehow magically appeared after the international media picked up on the story.
Jones. Do you think you were guilty of any crime?
O’Barry. I broke no law. But, when the media called, and asked the police, what charges do you have on O’Barry, they created a scenario where they thought they could probably have me deported.
Jones. You’re fortunate the international media got involved, and congressmen took issue with the arrest. A deportation proceeding would have landed you in immigration prison possibly for several months. It’s quite common in Japan for deportation proceedings to take several years.
O’Barry. That’s not what they tell the media. They say it’s an on going thing. Really, the entire thing was torture. This shouldn’t be allowed. I couldn’t take it any longer, and just dropped to the floor, and said, “I don’t care if you shoot me. I’m done.”
Jones. The U.S. Embassy has a deplorable record of helping citizens in Japan. I know of a case where the embassy intentionally destroyed physical evidence that a U.S. citizen was tortured while being detained in Japan. I know this is factual because I have seen the documents, which were released under the Freedom of Information Act.
O’Barry. The American embassy was in touch with me constantly because they were being badgered by people in Washington. The consequence… If they don’t act in cases like mine, that they get exactly what they don’t want, a tsunami of media attention.
Jones. Who were the people that were putting on the most pressure?
O’Barry. A California congressman. Many people got on the horn, hundreds of people, perhaps even thousands.
Jones. What happened after you were released?
O’Barry. Immediately after being released the cops followed me around everywhere I went. They kept telling me to return to the station to aid in their investigation. Each day I was being followed around, and asked to submit to more interrogations. I said, “You got to be kidding me, what makes you think I want you to torture me again?” I videotaped these harassments. The cops didn’t know it though.
Jones. When you were handed your passport upon release, did you think that was strange? Is that when you discovered that they must have entered the car prior to the fraudulent arrest?
O’Barry. No, I hardly remember being released. I was exhausted, sleep deprived, numb. I was not capable of thinking anything. And that’s how they do it. They want you in that condition so you’ll finally sign whatever it is that they put in front of you.
Jones. How often did they follow you around after you were released?
O’Barry. Several times.
Jones. Did they try, and pressure you to go back to the police station, and answer unrelated questions to the passport scam?
O’Barry. Constantly. They were calling my hotel room, and asking me to come to the police station for questioning. They followed my car, and pulled me over to ask if I would come in for more questioning.
Jones. When did all this finally stop?
O’Barry. It stopped when I hired a lawyer, and he called them, and told them I wasn’t going to answer any more questions.
Jones. What circumstances caused you to leave Japan? I know you went to Beijing.
O’Barry. Burnout. I was sick, and tired of the harassment.
Jones. How many days after being released did you leave?
O’Barry. I was scheduled to leave when I did. My departure date is usually arbitrary. I decided not to extend my stay. This time I simply left.
Jones. When did you finally have a chance to speak to an attorney?
O’Barry. The first lawyer I called is suing the museum, where the mayor is running his scam. I then talked to a lawyer named Takano. He contacted the police and demanded they stop harassing me. Understanding that the prosecutor could still files charges, and that those responsible was coming from someplace at the top, I ended up leaving Japan, and going to Beijing.
Jones. I know that for thirty years you’ve been calling for people to not boycott Japan, or assault its citizens. How do you feel now?
O’Barry. I don’t feel the same any longer.
Jones. When The Cove was being made, so long as there was money to throw around Japanese people met you at the airport, assisted you in many ways, and participated in the cause. Do any Japanese meet you at the airport, or assist you in any way any longer?
O’Barry. No. They’ve all been threatened, and scared away. They’re afraid of being ostracized.
Jones. Will you return to Japan?
O’Barry. I’m scheduled to go back in January with a German TV crew, ARD television station. I’ve hired an attorney to make sure that my legal rights are protected when I return to Japan. I’ll have a lawyer with me as well. That should be interesting.
Jones. That should be interesting indeed. I think you should refuse to be detained upon arrival at the airport.
O’Barry. If I do that they have an excuse to not let me into the country. Every time I go to Japan I’m detained upon arrival. I tell them the same thing. I have a right to be in Taiji. I have a right to blog about dolphin slaughter just as they would have a right to go to a slaughterhouse in America if they wanted to. I repeat this every time I’m interrogated. I just want to be treated like any other tourist. We have rights in the states, and with our relationship with Japan. They should know that I’m trained as to what to say. I’m dolphin watching! I’m whale watching! Regardless, they try to trip me up by asking the same questions over, and over again.
Jones. How much longer are you going to keep on doing this?
O’Barry. Well, on my 76th birthday I jumped 15,000’ from a plane.
Jones. You’re hard as nails!
O’Barry. You know what? When they start dropping dead from Minimata disease, that’s when they will stop this. Japan’s Supreme Court covered up that case, and helped the corporation hide the mercury dumping that took place in that city.
Jones. It was W. Eugene Smith that was responsible for bringing that story to light. Smith took the famous photo of Tomoko Uemura In Her Bath. For breaking the story, he was rewarded with practically being beaten to death by gangsters hired by the Chisso Corporation. The company is still in business to this day, and still pollutes the same body of water. Mercury contamination continues to exist even today. Perhaps even worse than when it was first discovered.
O’Barry. The Olympics will be the game changer regarding all the bad media attention they blame on me.
Jones. I wrote an article on why Japan’s Olympics should be boycotted. After all, how many times does a westerner need to hear, “whito pigu, gou homu”, or to be refused housing, or a seat in a restaurant, before the west rejects the repugnance of these small minded people, and stop purchasing their products. Sometimes living in Japan is like being in Alabama late ’52. It really does get that bad.
O’Barry. I was more terrified when I got out of police custody, and researched what could have happened when I was detained. There are thousands of innocent people in Japan’s prisons. People are swallowed up by this!
Jones. I know a Japanese/American, meaning someone who is 100% Japanese, but was raised in the states. He was in Japan on vacation, visiting his relatives. While waiting for a train, it was delayed due to bad weather. Freezing, he went to the police station, and asked if he could sit there until the trains began to run again. The police told him his Japanese sounded strange, and accused him of being a Chinese gangster. He told them he was Japanese, but from American. They didn’t believe him. He was arrested for suspicion of being a Chinese gang member. He was held in prison for 40 days. The prosecutors refused to release him until he signed a false confession written by the prosecutor. The statement was a confession that he was a Chinese gang member. During interrogation sessions he spoke Japanese, but the prosecutor refused to communicate directly with him in Japanese. The guy was forced to speak through an interpreter that he said could barely communicate in English. He ended up speaking Japanese to the interpreter, who then spoke in Japanese to the prosecutor. At issue was that he didn’t speak Japanese like “Japanese” so this somehow led to the absurd conclusion that he was a Chinese gangster, even though the police had in their possession both his Japanese, and U.S. passports, which he had on him at the time of his arrest. The police took his Japanese passport, and stamped a permanent black mark on it, ensuring that he would always be harassed upon entering Japan. This is significant because he has a Japanese wife, two children, owns a house, and has a good job to provide for his family. He fears that at any time the Japanese authorities could deport him. Some claim these officials are merely incompetent. That’s untrue. There are xenophobic, hateful, racists, and entirely dangerous.
Our conversation paused here because both myself, and Mr. O’Barry had prior engagements. We spoke again on the following morning.
Jones. I met with Rabbi Binyomin Edery of the Chabad House in Tokyo at his home to discuss human rights violations that occur in Japan. Rabbi Edery was running late, and his wife prepared me an excellent kosher meal. I really miss kosher food. That meal was excellent! When the Rabbi arrived he told me that he had just returned from Hokkaido, where he was visiting a prisoner who was being mistreated with gross injustice, and indignity. In Japan, prisoners are compelled to do physical labor for Toyota, Nissan, Honda, etc. The man refused to do slave labor for Japan’s auto industry. After the man refused to build component parts for Japan’s auto industry he was frequently beaten. Eventually prison officials stripped him naked, and refused to allow him to wear clothing. Apparently, he had been left naked for several weeks, and was suffering severe frostbite. This is significant because this is Hokkaido, which is the extreme north of Japan, and where temperatures plummet for most of the year. (Japan is notorious for prisoners receiving severe frostbite, and freezing to death.) Prison officials now apparently keep the man tied up on a dog leash, and force him to eat meals on his hands, and knees out of a dog bowl. I’ve asked the U.S. Embassy about this matter, but they remain mute? Why is this story not in the media? How is this any different from Guantanamo?
O’Barry. Honestly, I had no idea what went on in Japan’s prisons. Certainly, the Japanese don’t want to end up there. They’re ostracized, and considered social outcasts, regardless of guilt or innocence.
Jones. As far as I’m concerned some people forfeit their right to life. People that engage in that kind of abuse should be executed. I’m sick to death of watching people play bongos, and carry signs about, somehow thinking that will accomplish anything.
O’Barry. Well, the Japanese activists have abandoned ship, because the government scared the shit out of them. The government invites the media, and tells them that guy is dishonoring our country. We need to stop them!
Jones. They scared away Boyd Harnell. He’s the journalist that helped you originally break the Taiji story. When I discussed this with him, he told me the police constantly called, at all hours of the night, and harassed him over his relationship with you. So, it’s not just the Japanese that the officials are trying to scare away. I was interrogated about my “relationship” with you as well. I don’t get intimidated any longer. I just tell them to fuck off. I get loud, and Japanese don’t like anything loud.
O’Barry. The Japanese believe what they’re fed in the media. That’s why Boyd, and others won’t associate with me any longer. They’re afraid! Regardless, our cause is more popular than ever. I’m a bit concerned though about filling in flight documents that ask if I was ever convicted of a crime in Japan.
Jones. In Japan prosecutors have to indict someone being investigated within twenty days. If they don’t, then the investigation must be terminated. The fake passport case can no longer be raised in Japan. I’m also pretty sure no prosecutor would want the headache an action against you would bring. I’m certain, and I’m certain they’re certain that such a case would end their fraudulent career. You haven’t been convicted of any crime in Japan. So, you don’t have to report anything. There’s also no legal obligation for anyone to fill out those documents anyway. They are self-incriminating. You’re being asked to provide evidence against yourself, and then to sign it as well. Under such situations, it’s a violation of due process. I’d do as you did at the Shigu police station. Remain silent! Japanese cops are liars, and the prosecutors are sociopaths anyway.
O’Barry. Why don’t you get the hell out of there? You’re family is in Hawaii. You should take your son there, and teach him to surf, and dive. What a great life for him.
Jones. That’s all in the works my friend. All in the works! Oh, one more thing! When you went to Bali last year, the security guy my buddy hooked you up with was David LaBravah from the TV show, The Son’s Of Anarchy. He played the character Happy who tortured, and executed rival gang members, and exceedingly enjoyed it. I’d like to have a front row seat as to what Happy would do to some of these Japanese officials. One last thing! I heard you moved to Denmark?
O’Barry. Yes, it’s very civilized over here.
Jones. My guess is “civilized” doesn’t extend to the Pilot Whale killings in the Faroe Islands?
O’Barry. It’s one of the reasons we’re here. We live two hours from the Faroe Islands.
Jones. You mean you’re also engaged in exposing the actions of Caucasians who engage in similar activities as those of the Taiji fishermen? But, that flies in the face of the racist card you’ve been dealt by Japanese whackos that support Taiji fishermen, because, after all… they’re Japanese! (Nothing racist about that!)
O’Barry. What they are doing is an anachronistic concept that needs to be abolished. Many Faroe Island locals who never participated in that are trying to stop it through education. We want to support those efforts. Mercury contamination will end it eventually anyway. There’s a link between eating Pilot Whale meat, and Parkinson’s disease. This has been overshadowed by all the high drama.
Jones. OK, I’m on my way out. I’m taking my son for a walk on the beach.
O’Barry. I’m doing the same. I’m taking my daughter for a walk, and then swimming at a water theme park. At least we have our priorities in order!
Jones. One last thing… Japan’s judiciary, and its High Court share the same building in Tokyo as the public prosecutors. Where’s the public defender’s office you ask? There are no public defenders offices in Japan. There are no public defenders!
A cursory inspection of the Internet reveals a large amount of information related to the injustice of Japan’s legal representatives, and the system they continue to wrongfully adhere to. The following are but a few samples of reports regarding Japan’s lack of human rights, Japan’s coerced false confessions, Japan’s use of torture, and Japan’s Daiyo Kangoku system of detention.
Forced Confessions In Japan.
Japan: Briefing To The UN Committee On Torture.
Japan Urged To End False Confessions.
Japan’s Substitute Prison Shocks The World.
Victims Of A Safe Society.
Unlike in Japan, terrorists don’t have streets named after them in the U.S.
Update: On December 18th, 2015 Ric O’Barry’s Dolphin Project held a protest in London in front of the Japanese Embassy. An estimated one thousand supporters showed up for the event. Nearby construction crews hoisted a banner over a balcony of a high tower, which read, We Love Dolphins. During the protest, the Japanese Embassy took down the Japanese flag in an attempt to hide the location of its embassy. Ric spoke openly about his false arrest in Japan, as speakers broadcasted loudly into the embassy. The removal of the Japanese flag marks the first time in history that a nation voluntarily removed its national banner from public viewing. Clearly, the Japanese are ashamed of the international scrutiny that mounts as to its deplorable record for hate crimes, human rights violations, and its corrupt Ministry of Justice that resorts to the use of torture for no other purpose but to extract false confessions that result in a myriad of unjust convictions.
Watch Ric speak about his false arrest at the following link:
Stack Jones is an award winning writer, photographer and musician. In contrast to his music, Stack’s social, religious and political commentaries are scathing. He simply tells it like it is, without allowing external influences to mar his perspective. For more information visit http://stackjones.com.