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Ministry of Defense selling suicide torpedo Kewpie toys

11:00 AM on 12.18.2009 // Brad Rice

Woah. Put the brakes on for a moment, Land of the Rising Sun. We need to have a talk, here.

I know you like to have all sorts of cute little charms on your cellphones, but there's a limit to these things, and I think we've found it. Just recently LDP member Ichita Yamamoto reported in his blog on the 16th about a meeting with former Minister of Defense under the LDP and current LDP Head of Public Relations Yuriko Koike at the party headquarters where something cropped up.

During the meeting, Koike was showing him cute Japanese military-related cell phone straps that she had bought at the Ministry of Defense. Things were going well enough until she mentioned that they also sold Kewpie cell phone straps of Kaiten-class suicide torpedos and A6M Zero kewpies, where he noted that those might not be the best idea.

What in God's name made you think these were alright? And selling them at, of all places, The Ministry of Defense? I could understand Yasukuni or some backwater online shop -- only to feel the wrath of Hatena Bookmark and rescind selling the items -- but seriously, think about what you're doing.

It seems like any effort you make to try and improve relations with China, Korea and the rest of Asia is always shot in the foot by some careless part of your own government. I suppose I'd be less outraged if this were some independent company and not for sale in a government office.

Your own thoughts?

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Brad Rice, Founder
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Brad helped found Japanator.com in 2006, and currently serves as an Associate Editor. He's covered all aspects of the industry, but has a particular preference for the business-end of things, and... more   |   staff directory



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