Author of IQ84 has something else to say
Sunday, Sep. 30, 2012
Murakami calls for cool heads amid Senkakus flareup
Haruki Murakami, one of the world's foremost novelists, has waded into the Senkakus sovereignty row, warning of the peril of politicians peddling the "cheap liquor" of nationalism.
His intervention Friday came as Beijing launched a blistering attack on Tokyo at a U.N. session in New York, accusing Japan of theft as the dispute over the Japanese-controlled islet group intensified.
The author of "1Q84," who has a large following in China, called for cool heads to prevail.
Writing in the liberal-leaning Asahi Shimbun, Murakami, who has been tipped as a future Nobel laureate, said territorial disagreements are bound to occur because of the unfortunate system of dividing the world into countries with national borders.
"When a territorial issue ceases to be a practical matter and enters the realm of 'national emotions,' it creates a dangerous situation with no exit," Murakami said.
"It is like cheap liquor: Cheap liquor gets you drunk after only a few shots and makes you hysterical. It makes you speak loudly and act rudely. . . . But after your drunken rampage you are left with nothing but an awful headache the next morning.
"We must be careful about politicians and polemicists who lavish us with this cheap liquor and fan this kind of rampage."