Condemned to Repeat


Flyers distributed around New York throughout the fall of 2011. Around the City University, at Occupy Wall Street, at bookstores and restaurants, to Amy Goodman, Michael Moore, and countless others.

“A child of 5 whose nanny is leaving is told not to cry because that would make it more difficult for nanny. … A child whose parents are frequently away and who leave him with one of a succession of au pair girls is not encouraged to recognize how lonely, and perhaps angry, he feels at their constant absence. When parents separate, it is often made plain to a child that he is not expected to miss the departing parent or to pine for the parent’s return.”
 - John Bowlby

“A thing which has not been understood inevitably reappears; like an unlaid ghost, it cannot rest until the mystery has been resolved and the spell broken.”
 - Sigmund Freud

“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”
 - George Santayana

An intolerable year more has passed, and Rui is still far from home.  He is a kidnapping victim, a pawn in a game played between the governments of Japan and the United States whereby thousands of children have lost their homes and families and are psychologically abused in a bureaucratic police state, which is what Japan is today. Japan is a  state in which judges are not accountable, where the police are not accountable for torturing confessions out of their arrests, and the public is taught to accept its fate – as in so many countries – under the pig-headed fiction that its history is more faultless and refined, its people’s striving more noble, and its system of life is as good as they can expect, whether the myths are taken seriously or not.

None of these  self-regarding assumptions should be considered true of Japan;  neither does the public  have to believe them for them to function. Japan is worse than resistant to self-critical regard; it is avoidant in the form of a neurotic symptom. “We know very well this is wrong. But we get away with it, so we go on repeating it, regardless.” My precious boy therefore remains a prisoner of his captors, beyond the reach of respect, beyond the reach of my love for him,  enchained in a clan of people not willing to think enough to want to see him protected.

I blame Machico Terauchi. I blame Kensuke Ohnuki. I blame Sayaka Chiba, Miki Sakurada, and all their wicked self-deceiving accomplices. I blame Machico’s insufferable, smug, rich, self-satisfied, hateful family and friends, and the businessmen to whom they whore themselves.  I blame the government of the United States for having no principles but those of profit and militarism, therefore knowingly and willfully failing to protect our children from Japan’s tentacles. I blame the people and government of Japan for their horrid false consciousness, indifference, coldness and passive lack of accountability for themselves and the well being of their own children, whereby they condone the stealing of mine. I blame the judges of Japan’s courts who, thinking they are invincible, continually impose their daily will on children, treating them as pieces of property without the least regard for -  much less understanding of -  their welfare, and who hold fathers’ tenderness and love for their children in contempt. I blame the Japanese Diet, each and every member, whose weakness and subservience creates among them the stupid belief that they are not accountable for this mass atrocity. Complacent and satisfied, they earn their pay packets and their pensions while their people suffer. I blame the systemically  profiteering, obsessed financial elites, underwriters and managers of Japan’s cluster of the global economic war whose only concern is to attend to the project of shifting power and wealth upwards to themselves, in the process of which they are willing to deny the humanity and needfulness of the world’s children and parents, and who stand for nothing but the grail of a 3% annual growth rate and the prerogative to commit any mendacity, to kill anything in their path to secure it. And I blame the Japanese press, continually publishing a flood of fiction after fiction about the abduction of children from within and abroad, willingly playing their assigned role -  to fill the Japanese public with xenophobia, trump up fear of non-Japanese, and to regenerate bitterly stupid anti-child, anti-male assumptions about the role of men and women in child rearing and the care and need children have of their parents, male and female. Japan’s compliant and sycophantic press is a continual scandal, and brings great shame on them  for their obedience,  timidity,  and repetitive dissemination of ignorance in the tortoise like pose of the uninitiated which they readily adopt.

But of course like all people in intolerable circumstances, I also blame myself.  Much as I believe it would be best to devise a system of thinking wherein neither suicide nor murder were built into the phantasm, it is a complex project indeed to construct a sense of oneself in the flood that being subject to having all grounding imperatives denied unleashes.

I accuse and blame all of them. And I cannot bear to think of them except with this condemnation. I know of no supernatural powers, no mystification, no rewards for righteousness; and it seems the world likewise has few penalties for collective wrongdoing and evil. But nonetheless, the perpetrators and sycophants in Tokyo and Washington carry the condemnation inside. They know what they are, and they have to live with it every day. May it sink them, and bring about their well-deserved demise.

Machico Terauchi – Child Abductor; Rui’s Kidnapper

About Brian Prager

I am the father of a beloved son who has been retained in Japan by his Japanese mother against my will. My boy has been kept out of contact with me since June, 2010. I am struggling to save him and get justice for us.
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