Japan: Bloggers respond to kidnapping in Iran

Earlier last week, the first report was made that a Japanese male was kidnapped and in captivity in Iran. Later it was revealed that the abductee is a Japanese university student who was backpacking in southern Iran. The news has reminded many of the previous cases in which Japanese individuals were held hostage in Iraq. These incidents sparked a great deal of controversy. The ex-hostages were criticized for their lack of jikosekinin (自己責任), or self-responsibility, They were also accused of wasting tax payers’ money, and the government billed them for the costs of their flights back home after they were released.

This time again many bloggers harshly criticize the young man's “irresponsible” behaviour and write that this is the outcome that he deserves. Blogger aomanaei echoes this view:


A Japanese university student was kidnapped in Iran.
Why did he go to such a dangerous place?
It is hard understand.
He must have known that it could be dangerous.
But then why?
Because it's cool? Because it's something you can do only now? Did he think he was a journalist?
I think travelling is a wonderful thing to do.
However, you don't have to go a place that you know is dangerous…
The careless behavior of one person forces the government to take action.
I want him to remember that he has a family who is concerned about him.

Another blogger shares a similar thought and writes:




Why did he go there even though he was told not to.
Because of him, the prime minister has to hold a press conference and negotiate with the Iranian government.
It really is so much trouble.

I really do not understand what he was thinking.

But if possible we don't want to waste our tax money and time on unnecessary things.

masaru-iwai responds to those reactions:


Anyhow, even if the media say that Iran is dangerous, or the Ministry of Foreign Affairs issues an evacuation warning/advisory, people still go if they want to. People may have different motivations to go, but basically they “want to see the reality” I think. What are the reasons sufficient to obstruct this desire? Because it causes the people of Japan trouble? Because it's a waste of tax money? Hmm, ok. What kind of trouble does it cause the people of Japan? Aren't there any other wasteful uses of tax money? Do they also get angry about other wasteful spending? I don't quite understand this.

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