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Regarding the Jan. 16 article by Lakhdar Brahimi and Desmond Tutu, “Hope and peril for Sudan“: The situation in Sudan reminds me of the political and economic situation in Japan. First, our political leaders have neither a strategic vision nor immediate ideas for making Japan a competitive and thriving country. What they have to talk about when it comes to creating a new country always ends with promises — not effective action. Their intentions do not live up to the desires and demands of the general public. They do not listen to and talk with the people. Instead they promote their own interests and try to protect themselves from the fallout of political scandals such as pooling money in secret accounts.

Second, business managers of big companies are trying to overcome fierce global competition by reducing workforces and wages. Their way of doing business has brought about an increasing number of unemployed people and the worst recession since the end of World War II. The fact that many from the younger generations cannot see any hope for the future has led to numerous suicides among workers in the prime of their lives.

Mass unemployment, increasing crime and public mistrust of political leaders are contributing to the collapse of Japanese society. Therefore, I ask the so-called Elders to come to Japan and talk with the top leaders as well as ordinary people as much as possible. A foreign mission by The Elders would play an important role in reforming and restructuring this nation and in waking up Japanese leaders, as Commodore Perry did in the middle of the 19th century.

jyouji hamano

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