The pseudo boundary between IS and sophisticated societies

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In films, many characters are easily killed in even cruel and grotesque way, but no one really dies. This is just imagination.
On 12 October, Islamic State (IS) have declared the enslavement of women and children. So far, IS have been “performing” (I have no intention of offending victims) through videos or Dabiq their inhuman behavior. Recently, journalists have been killed and they broadcast videotaped beheading.
This way of IS, I’m going to call this “system”, leads governments in US and other European countries to fight against IS and also make hate against them in our minds. The only purpose seems to make those who see those videos hate them.
Then, here’s one simple question; what for we have hate? The main reason to hate IS seems to be that “they” are different from us. On the other hand, we have seen the worldwide trend for young people to try to participate in IS. Then, another question comes; what attracts them?

In Japan, on 6 October, several students were allegedly investigated for the journey to participate in IS. In our country, Japan, actually, we have experienced the same kind about 20 years before.
In 1995, Aum Shinrikyo Cult had spread deadly gas, sarin, in Matsumoto, Nagano prefecture, and Tokyo Subway, which killed 13people and injured more than 6000 people. Some of injured remains in a vegetative state.
In early 80s, Aum Shinrikyo, which had been forced legally to dissolve in 1996, attracted many young people. (This process is fictionalized in 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami) Especially, the core member who produced sarin and conducted many murder cases were so-called elites and well-educated. Before the tragedy, experts analyzed that trend as counter-culture.
Although the canon of Asahara, who were the guru of Aum Shinrikyo and have already been sentenced to death penalty, have been gradually realized as empty, young people could not make themselves free from the Cult.

In 1984, when the first yoga training hall was launched by Asahara, Japan was entering into the bubble economy. Nobody had believed the Utopia would end. After the collapse of the bubble economy around 1992, Japanese economy have been shrinking and the number of suicide cases have been growing since then.
In 1996, one year after the tragedy, so-called financial big-bang had taken place and many workforces were laid off. Lots of university students at that time had failed to obtain the jobs. Moreover, since then, the traditional Japanese economic system, i.e. seniority based pay system, lifetime employment system, had decayed.
So, here we see the reason why Aum Shinrikyo could attract young people; the doubt of the conventional system.

When we see again IS and their “performing” against sophisticated society, in the central of which complicated financial lies, IS apparently does the same as Aum Shinrikyo. What IS does is like a “film” or “documentary film”, which even make us confused with unreality.
For whom they are performing? Or what do the videos of IS reflect?; It’s the system of sophisticated societies.
The richer top 1% people become, the poorer the “others” will be. In Japan, there are many “victims” of “systems”; 300,000 suicide in 10years, the same amount as the victims of atomic bomb in Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
Because we see the agents of IS through videos, we can offend them. On the other hand, we cannot see any agents who make victims in our sophisticated societies, because societies are sophisticated so. To whom we offend? Go to the Wallstreet? It can’t be the answer.
The only difference is the appearance of the agents. So, we can see the equivalence between the two systems; IS and our societies. When we offend IS, we only see the pseudo-border, not real border. Inherently, the border cannot be seen.

It is easy for us to blame IS, but we should not forget that they reflect us.

Naoto Nonaka
Email: [email protected]