This is rather sad news. Reports are that he had no vital signs while being rushed to the hospital. Initial reports was that he collapsed on stage at an event he was attending, but others heard gun shots. Reports now are saying he is dead but will have to wait and see as this story is still developing.
As many know, him and Former President Donald Trump were good friends.
So prayers to Abe and his family!
We are in a fog-of-war moment, so I do not want to overstate anything, but, given Abe’s position toward China, Taiwan, and his staunch alliance with the “West”, this is a dangerous development. If the people of Japan coalesce around the idea that China is behind this killing – by no means a certainty – this is going to majorly ratchet up world tensions
What I find most extraordinarily weird regarding this as being recent news is how fast this major event has disappeared from the headline news. A major prime minster was just assassinated and the entire news has moved on from it less than 24 hours. I remember when Anwar Sadat was assassinated and how that was in the news for several days following but not this! Why?
This article is an interesting read. Seems that the anti-hero changes roles when sympathy is applied to the assassin and his revealed motives on why he killed a head of state. Very very weird story! “The Atlantic” is a liberal pink commie rag, however this article with the exception of a few jabs at conservative views is a well written piece that offers many insights of Japan’s political culture and associations such as “The Moonies” and the Unification Church" that go back as early as the 50’s.
Japanese politicians may never again approach a campaign crowd with the same ease Abe displayed when he arrived that July morning at Nara. His death may come to mark a moment of lost innocence, the way the assassination of John F. Kennedy does in the United States
Although Abe’s reputation has been stained, it may recover somewhat. His harshest critics tend to be older Japanese who have strong memories of the war and its aftermath, and who fear the revival of their country’s military power. As that generation dies off, Abe may come to seem prescient, because of the way he prepared his country for the threats of a new century in which Japan must defend itself from an assertive China.
Counterintuitively, the reputation of Yamagami, his alleged assassin, may not suffer. There is an old tradition in Japan of reverence for the doomed hero, the man who undertakes a suicidal quest and becomes a figure of deep nobility, regardless of the justice of his cause. Many Japanese still revere the right-wing nationalists who stormed Tokyo’s government buildings in 1936 and killed not one but two former prime ministers. The plot’s ringleaders were later tried and executed, but a shrine to their memory stands in a prominent place in central Tokyo. The great Japanese author Yukio Mishima memorialized them in a story and a film. Their sincerity and patriotism are what matter to their admirers, not the cruelty of their act or its ramifications.
Something similar could be said of Yamagami. “I no longer have room to think about the political meaning and consequences of Abe’s death,” he wrote a day before the assassination. The purity of his motives—his righteous anger at the Unification Church—seems to have resonated with the Japanese public.
In the months before he fired the fatal shots, Yamagami described himself as a tragic figure, drawn inexorably to a confrontation that would destroy him. And he did not miss the ironic parallel between his own heedless fury and the zealotry of the church members who had ruined his life. His desperation for a murder weapon, he wrote, was “like a member of the Unification Church throwing his life away for a false savior.”