Japan: Hostage-Taking Shows why Active Military Required

Posted February 2, 2015 at 5:00am

The Wall St. Journal reports that “Prime Minister Shinzo Abe says hostage-taking in the Middle East shows why Japan needs a military that is more active overseas. His opponents say it is a reason to be extra-cautious about entanglements.”  

“The apparent brutal killings of Japanese journalist Kenji Goto and fellow hostage Haruna Yukawa have crystallized views on both sides about Mr. Abe’s defense policy and Japan’s alliance with the U.S.”  

“The possible beheading of Mr. Goto was shown in a video distributed over the weekend on social media sites linked to Islamic State. It came in the early stages of a parliament session in which Mr. Abe is seeking support for his plan to broaden the role of Japan’s military.”  

“’Japan will resolutely carry out its duty as part of the international community fighting terrorism,’ the prime minister said shortly after the nation woke to the news Sunday.”