Japan and the auto industry | AspenTimes.com

Japan and the auto industry

Dear Editor:

On Dec. 7, 1941, the Japanese launched an attack on Pearl Harbor intended to break America’s will by destroying our Pacific fleet. They presumed we would sue for peace, giving Japan the right to control the western Pacific Ocean and all of the Orient. On the same day, 67 years later, Japan struck again, this time with the goal of wiping out our entire industrial base. The attackers were not Japanese pilots, but rather, a handful of Republican senators from states having Japanese factories. By driving the U.S. auto industry into oblivion, these senators would give Japan far more control over the U.S. than the Pearl Harbor attack.

In the 67 years since Pearl Harbor, the Japanese learned that money spent on senators and congressmen could achieve far more control over the U.S. than any fleet of battleships and aircraft carriers. The Republicans urging the U.S. auto industry to enter bankruptcy steadfastly ignore the evidence that bankruptcy would start a spiral of collapses resulting in the failure of hundreds of companies and the unemployment of millions of Americans. Feeding off the almost pathological hatred of the unions by right-wing Americans, they hope to blame the unions for our industrial collapse, deflecting attention from the economic support these politicians get, albeit indirectly, from Japanese companies. The media, all being paid via advertisements by Japanese auto makers, mainly chose to overlook the above.

Ironically, there is now only one person, one man, in the entire U.S., now able to save us from Japanese industrial conquest, and that is George H. W. Bush. Why do I think he will save our industry? In 1944, his father was shot down by the Japanese while over Chichi-jima, an island where, it was known, captured American pilots were tortured and eaten. (See James Bradley’s “A True Story of Courage.”) The president’s father managed to bail out of his plane over the sea and was kept afloat in a small raft. A Japanese patrol boat left the island, headed for him, but fellow pilots kept it off.

Hours later, an American submarine surfaced nearby and rescued him. Many years later, at a state dinner in Japan, he famously threw up in the lap of the Japanese Prime Minister. Did this result from his looking around the room, seeing men of an age that, had they been on Chichi-jima, would have had him as the main course many years earlier? Consequently, I doubt his son will give Japan control over what is left of our manufacturing industry by allowing our auto makers to collapse.

Raymond N. Auger

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