ISIS beheaded someone else. In other news…
He ventured to Syria to tell the stories of those whose lives have been torn apart by war.
But in doing so, Kenji Goto suffered his own gruesome fate — apparently becoming the latest foreigner to be decapitated by ISIS.
A newly distributed video from ISIS appears to show the beheaded body of the Japanese journalist. It came one week after a video surfaced featuring Goto holding a photo of what appeared to be the corpse of his fellow Japanese captive, Haruna Yukawa.
Just like ISIS’ previous beheading videos, the 67-second footage released Saturday was issued by the terror group’s media wing, Al Furqan Media. The video cannot be authenticated by CNN.
And now, Japan finds itself more deeply embroiled in the global fight against ISIS.
“We are deeply saddened by this despicable and horrendous act of terrorism, and we denounce it in the strongest terms,” Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said, according to broadcaster NHK. “To the terrorists, we will never, never forgive them for this act.”
Unlike the United States, Britain and other allies, Japan is not involved in the military campaign against ISIS. But Japan has been providing humanitarian aid in the Middle East as ISIS continues its bloody quest to solidify an Islamic state across parts of Iraq and Syria.
Let me try to untangle my feelings. I am sad, of course, at his death at the hands of the rabid dingos of ISIS. Especially when:
The 47-year-old Goto left Japan last fall, when his youngest daughter was 3 weeks old. His wife, Rinko, first heard from his captors December 2.
Goto’s mother, Junko Ishido, said her son wanted to help create a world without wars.
“I’m shedding tears of sorrow, I just can’t think of any words to say,” she said, according to Japanese broadcaster NHK. “But I don’t want this sorrow to create a chain of hatred.”
He was a husband, a father, and a son. And now he lies dead in the desert. Sad.
Mourning’s over; time to move on!
Mom doesn’t want hate? Really? What would she prefer? Lust? Sloth? I’d rather just forget Goto than be told I can’t hate his executioners. You go ahead and cry, but tears make it hard to aim the rifle scope. Or, in my case, hard to see the keyboard.
I love dogs, but I wouldn’t hesitate to shoot a rabid one. When a mean dog has attacked my beloved Bloodthirsty Puppy, I have viciously kicked an animal I would have been happy to scratch behind the ears only seconds earlier. I love dogs, but I love justice and safety more.
I love humanity, too, or at least I try. Okay, I know I’m supposed to try. For while the creatures I love most in my life are people, so are the creatures I fear most. And hate most, though I try to keep hatred in check. Hatred is a great motivator, but can easily overwhelm more rational thought. Think of a food pyramid with hatred at the pointy apex. You need a little every day, but don’t overdo it.
When Jihadi John and the IS-a-Kills leave yet another husband/father/son a bloody, headless stump in the sand, tell me how else to feel. I’m past shock.
But then, Aggie and I were past shock before we started this blog nine years and two weeks ago (thanks for the cards—not). One of our early fans, Barb from Pittsburgh, raved about our posts and our points of view. But she had to bow out because the world we were revealing to her was too hard for her to take. She didn’t dispute what she wrote, she just couldn’t take it. Never heard from her since.
Who could be shocked anymore after 9/11? Or the Passover Massacre in Netanya? Or the 1994 bombing at the Jewish community center in Buenos Aires? (Or the recent assassination of the prosecutor still looking into it?) Or the abduction of the Chibok girls by Boko Haram? Or Nidal Hassan’s “workplace violence” at Ft. Hood? Or the Luxor Massacre in 1997? Or the the butchery of the Munich Olympics?
Let’s stop there. The world was shocked by Munich; sportscasters were rendered speechless.
More than 40 years have passed, and we’re still “shocked”? I don’t understand. Truly, I don’t understand. Somebody explain it to me.
Goto wanted to “tell the stories of those whose lives have been torn apart by war,” and became the protagonist in a tragic war story of his own. As he must have known it might. I won’t gainsay his decision—it was a brave one—even if I can’t wholly support it. He was a husband, father, and son who could have chosen to remain so, rather than put himself at risk of a merciless death in the desert. Soldiers don’t have the choice; he did.
The least we can do for him in return is to get over ourselves. Be shocked, but get past it. We’ve had 40 years. Let’s try something else.