politics

Diet debates circumstances of Japan's soccer loss to N Korea

37 Comments

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Hire NK Coach, no need to waste time in Diet and discuss more important issues there.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Just let it be, alreaady. The world knows who the "real' winners were. Bringing up anything would give NK the publicity they crave for anyways.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Nice to see our tax money at work

3 ( +5 / -2 )

It's good to see the inept taking up such simple issues! It would be terrible is J-politicians actually taxed their brain cells on something more complicated.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Plenty of things they could be discussing - nuclear issues, rebuilding, Okinawa, population decline... and they talk about the soccer team's possible kidnapping if they won? Pathetic.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

“I presume that, if Japan won by 2-0 or 3-0, our players themselves would have been abducted,” Yes Mr Sakamoto, that is exactly what would have happened. I'm sure you have proof for this allegation and are not just making stuff up to appeal to your Nationalistic followers.

Reminds me of that Brass Eye quote, "It's scientific fact. There's no real evidence about it, but it is scientific fact."

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Sour Grapes and lies.

I'm not with North Korea but if you lost the game.....YOU LOST!!! If you were worried about safety then you don't send your team at all. If you were planning to lose then you can simply forfeit the game.

There's no need to expose them to such hatred and ridicule and then not play to win.

If anything, Japan's government just shot themselves in the foot. Now they'd like to claim that they were dishonorable and didn't play fairly?

Maybe FIFA should review Japan's qualification. If you aren't going to play honestly then don't play at all.

But I don't believe Japan's DIET. Everybody knows it's difficult to win Away games. They beat Japan. If North Koreans pull their pants down and moon the DIET they have every right to do so now.

I think it burns though to lose to NK for them. It's dishonorable to try to downplay their victory though. America did not do that when Nadeshiko won the WC. Just accept it.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

One would think the Diet to have more pressing issues on the agenda than moaning and groaning about the loss to North Korea. I guess this is taking the easy way out for the day, rather than trying to address economic and social ills.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Diet debates? LOL

I am not for NK, but the fact is Japan has lost. Go back to work and start discussing GDP growth and Job creation. Geewiz, grow up!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

It was in a committee meeting regarding the abduction issue. Sakamoto stated personal opinion. The Foreign Minister replied as he is supposed to. Everyone else probably groaned as they knew Sakamoto shouldn't be saying stuff like that. (my assumption, as I haven't seen video) They went back to work. End of story until the media picked up the sensational (?) comments of an idiot who wasted the committee's time.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Sweet lord! They lost to avoid kidnapping??

NK is well known to come up with pathetic excuses for losing in sports -- hit by lightning, etc. -- but it's a sad day when Japan stoops to their level to try and save face. Japan lost, fair and square. Did they field bad players? maybe... Was it because they had already secured a berth at the Olympics and played half-heartedly? I think so. But to avoid being kidnapped?

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

This is 'a state of emergency' for Japan,does the Diet understood how serious this matter will be? A collpase of Japanese public morale and security! And if japan won North Korea in the match, their greatest leader will launching a ballistic missle ovweflew Japan's outer space!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Just how much money was spent for this debate? Could it have been used somewhere else, where it would be productive (cough earthquake/tsunami evacuees)?

So what if Japan lost the game? Japan's qualified to continue, and NK isn't. So there's no chance they'll be facing each other in the near future.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

netninja, you're comparing a meaningless game in the qualifying round (Japan already qualified) with the final game of the women's World Cup? Sure, North Korea played well and deserved to win, and sure, Japan should have played "honestly" and fielded their best players instead of testing their bench players. But really, that's not a very comparison.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The lion's share of the credit should go to manager Zac (Zaccheroni), as he let the team lose by 1-0," Sakamoto said."Judging from the way he used the players, I presume he was resolutely prepared for a draw or defeat by the narrowest of margins

.Sure he did. If you go with the intention of losing out of fear that your team is going to be abducted, why go at all? Just cancel the match out of security concerns and let it go at that. This "we let them win" crap just won't fly.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Japan is a good country but they need to take politics more seriously!! Stupid debate wasting away our tax yen!!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Come on guys you are pathetic!

How many times Japan is bashed that it is too lame and too chickenshit in its foreign politics toward neighbors?

Now when the national representative (in the face of the football team) was humiliated in NK we have just to bow and say thank you? Or may be sorry for asking for too much (those bad mannered players shouldn't have brought bananas - doumo sumimasen)

Is that what you want? I think such debates show there is diversity and are not waist. Japan have to show some position and withstand the provocations.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Waste of time.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

bogva: "How many times Japan is bashed that it is too lame and too chickenshit in its foreign politics toward neighbors?"

It's not Japan bashing to say that using the tax-payers money to debate 'why' Japan lost the game, as though it were a decision process, is a waste of time and money and there are better things the government should be doing. What's more, suggesting that it's pathetic that the reason might be because if Japan won they might be abducted is literally the stupidist excuse for losing I've heard since the North Korean team claimed they lost in women's soccer because the team was hit by lightning a week or so before.

Nice to see Japanese politicians are as lacking in reason as their North Korean counter parts -- the difference being, of course, we all know NK does it on purpose where Sakamoto seems to honestly believe what he says to be true.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

NO ( ꒪Д꒪)!!! JAPAN! ヽ(●゚´Д`゚●)ノ゚

0 ( +0 / -0 )

After listening to SmithinJapan it would appear that these politicians have lost the bounce in their bungee.

If everything the readers posted here is true then Japan may be in big trouble. We shouldn't have misguided men in control of guided missiles.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Kim's thinking "They took the bait, Smithers. Ehhhhhhxcellent."

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Recently, Japan's sports world seems to smack of nationalism whenever I watch a program on TV whether it's golf, soccer, vollyball,etc,. I watched the NK vs Japan soccer game and rooted for Japan. NK played rough ball all the way. Winning for them meant much more than the Japanese team. Those in the DIET who can't figure that out just shows the kind of politicians who run this country. To believe that the Japanese team would have been abducted is to believe the NK team would have faced the gallows if they lost. Nonsence.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

SmithInJapan is absolutely correct. It's utterly asinine that taxpayers yen are being wasted on a debate in the highest government forum on a subject as innocuous as a soccer match.

The Japanese national team is not an extention of Japanese poitical will.

Nor is it to be used to allow asshat Nationalists to live vicariously through sports victories in the absence of apparently preferred military confrontations.

It's a soccer team, for Pete's sake. And the lost match has no place being debated in the Diet.

Coach Zaccheroni made the professional and mature decision in not squandering the health of his players on what was essentially a useless match against a largely irrelevant opponent. He gave all of his players an opportunity to aquire some seasoning against more serious teams, and in the end came back with a healthy, albeit heavily inconvenienced, squad.

Kudos to Zak for not giving in to the childish whinging of Japanese nationalists.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I don't know why you all think this is such a joke. Were I coach Zacherroni, after watching my players get deliberately intimidated at the airport by NK government personnel, I would have thrown it. The game itself wouldn't (and didn't) matter. My concern would be with getting my team out of NK as soon as possible. "Play to win or don't show up" is fine for the Yanks going to Boston, Ohio state going to Michigan, or even England going to Ireland. I would be curious to know if English rugby players were deliberately intimidated by Irish customs officers? I somehow doubt it. This was Japan in North Korea being deliberately harassed and intimidated not by fans (that would come later) but by NK customs officers (aka, military). Abusive fans are a reality, but it is generally assumed that local authorities will provide security. What happens when you are more afraid of the local authorities than the fans? My guess is the coach chose to throw it AFTER arriving, as in the team went to NK prepared to "play to win" but changed that position once fear for safety became a factor. If the JFA had known the reality their team would face upon arrival, they may well have cancelled for security reasons, but who is to say they were not taken by surprise. Put yourself in Zaccheroni's shoes after witnessing what went down at the Pyongyang Airport and ask yourself honestly what you would have done. And by the way, if by some chance Irish customs officers HAD deliberately harrassed/intimidated the English side, you can bet the issue would come up in Parliament.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

They have nothing serious to discuss then? Like the nuclear disaster, 8% of land mass contaminated, contaminated foods, rad testing, 250,000 homeless people in the disaster zone, 20 million tons of Miyagi debris, reconstruction, nuclear energy policy, green energy. I could go on!

4 ( +5 / -1 )

At least the NK fans were not total thugs. I am from Britain and we have fans of a premier league team responsible for hundreds of deaths in 2 stadiums in Europe .

Thankfully the NK fans did not sink to that level. Japan had already qualified, the tie did not matter really.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

“The lion’s share of the credit should go to manager Zac (Zaccheroni), as he let the team lose by 1-0,” So now J-politicians admit that it's okay to fraud the fans. Who else was in on this gift to the NKoreans? The players? The coaching staff? Ha If you watched the game, the Japanese played scared. They heard footsteps as soon as they stepped off the airplane. I can't blame them for playing scared though. The 1-0 result seems about right and they really shouldn't hang their heads considering who and where they were playing. Why not just forfeit or play at a neutral location?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"And by the way, if by some chance Irish customs officers HAD deliberately harrassed/intimidated the English side, you can bet the issue would come up in Parliament."

The issue of being harrassed at an airport wasn't what was being discussed in the Diet. Excuses for why the national team lost a soccer match were being offered instead. On taxpayers' time. Not quite the same things.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Also, it should go without saying that it's patently absurd to genuinely believe North Korea would have openly and brazenly held the Japanese national soccer team against their will, a la abduction, in full view of the world. The North Korean leadership is loopy, yes. But not that loopy.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

LFR, I agree that NK would not actually "abduct" the Japanese team, but they certainly could have made the departure just as, or even more, "pleasant" than the entrance was. It is also easy for us to say that it is nonsensical to think so, but if you were Zacheroni and co., totally at the mercy of a government going all out to let you know that you are not a mere opponent, but the enemy, such a scenario may not seem so farcical. Or perhaps the team would be allowed to leave, but supporters could mysteriously be caught taking photos in unauthorized areas or talking smack about the Dear Leader and his dad? As ridiculous as it seems, none of this could be ruled out.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

It's not surprising, given the Nork's past record in international relations. I'm not sure why North Korea is even allowed to join events like the World Cup- murderous dictatorships need to be isolated, boycotted, and ignored. It worked for South Africa, it would work for North Korea also.

I guess the Japanese government is afraid of domestic trouble from the NK Citizen's association here. Hence, they allow trade, allow money from pachinko to flow to Li'l Kim, and allow their citizens to be mistreated.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

What's there to debate about?! Just do the same to them the next time. That's all there is to it; case closed! Move on.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

They lost because they were tired. The North Korean soldiers harassed them at the hotel keeping them up all night. They didn't get any sleep.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

WTF?!?!!?!??! are there no other pressing matters that should be taken care of?????

0 ( +1 / -1 )

comon Japan, using sport as a political tool is no better than what NK would do. hypocritical you think?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

I think that mix fight would be better.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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