People in Kansai’s commercial capital were asked if they feel concerned about the prospect of nuclear or conventional missile attacks by North Korea on Japan — and whether there are more important worries in their lives right now.

Sabrina Zirakzadeh
Performer, 32 (American)

I’m very concerned about the possibility of North Korea launching a strike, but not against Japan specifically. The progress it has made in missile tech in the last five years is terrifying, which means they expect or want a reason to use it. Japan could be a target, but I think it’d be just to make a point to the rest of the world, and because Japan hasn’t done much lately to get a rise out of them, a strike against a leader stupid enough to keep poking the viper is more likely.

Johnna Slaby
Artist, 25 (Japanese)

As I don’t have a phone or a TV, the threat isn’t present in my day-to-day life. Although it’s good to be as informed as you can, I don’t know if there is much I could do for a situation like that besides prepare. Not to sound too much like a hippie, but if there is something you can do about the wars within your own radius, be it external or internal, facing those issues and trying to have an effect in any way you can might be a better way to get the most out of your time.

Gerard Tetel
Writer, 33 (American)

It’s definitely something that’s on my mind. You can’t help read the paper and see what’s going on or not be affected by international politics. But it’s not something I believe to be an imminent threat right in my life in Japan right now. The things I tend to worry about on a day-to-day level are just my work, eating for the day and making sure that I do the things I do for my own personal life.

Rachel Paterson
Teacher, 30 (Scottish)

I find it exhausting to worry about all the threats in the world that affect me, directly or indirectly, so I try not to put too much energy towards things I can’t change. It’s more efficient, for me, to worry about daily life stressors, like having to make phone calls in Japanese, or why it seems to be so difficult to vote in my own country’s elections by post.

Felicity Tillack
Filmographer, 31 (Australian)

I’ve been in Japan for over 10 years now, and this is one of many times that a missile crisis with North Korea has been an issue. I have been worried in the past but I feel that this is just another example of North Korea’s posturing. I feel that my family back home is quite concerned, but I’m more worried about domestic issues like the continuing nuclear debate in Japan and the cleanup of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear reactors.

Junichi Yamakawa
Teacher, 39 (Japanese)

I don’t worry about North Korea that much. We cannot believe in the mass media that much because it’s all run by companies and the mass media cannot say anything bad about those companies. You need to think and not rely so much on the mass media. We also have a lot of Korean people — and even North Korean people — in Japan, so I don’t think they will attack Japan. Communication is the key word.

Interested in gathering views
in your neighborhood? E-mail: community@japantimes.co.jp

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