The unfortunate brutal murder of a young American at a remote island (“‘A case of misdirected adventure’: Tribesmen kill American,” Nov. 23) is an example of how misadventure and irresponsibility can lead to the demise of a dream and end a precious life. The tragic incident should be an eye-opener for all around the globe; particularly for young adults who always feel they can achieve anything they want without any connection to reality.

Similarly irresponsible tourist behavior in foreign nations and in completely unknown terrains must be avoided to prevent repetitions of such sad incidents. Furthermore, an individual or a community (particularly isolated primitive tribes) have the complete right to protect their privacy and integrity of their socio-ethnic lifestyle.

Several ancient tribal communities around the planet are facing the danger of extinction. Such isolated tribal members are extremely vulnerable to diseases and infections from civilized people due to poor immunity and should not be disturbed. Only scientific studies under special circumstances and following international guidelines and protocol should be allowed.

Lastly, countries must have stringent monitoring and surveillance of forbidden territories. The administrators of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands where the American was killed also cannot avoid responsibility for their serious failure with respect to tourist security and protecting the privacy and serenity of ancient tribal communities.

Each one of us needs to learn from this unfortunate incident and try to be more responsible toward local ethnic and ecological sensitivity.


The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.

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