Honor, Dishonor, Seppuku, and Roadkill: from South Korea to Arabia and Beyond……….


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“The vice-principal of a South Korean high school who accompanied hundreds of pupils on a ferry that capsized has committed suicide, police said on Friday, as hopes faded of finding any of the 274 missing alive. The Sewol, carrying 476 passengers and crew, capsized on Wednesday on a journey from the port of Incheon to the southern holiday island of Jeju. Kang Min-gyu, 52, had been missing since Thursday. He appeared to have hanged himself with his belt from a tree outside a gym in the port city of Jindo where relatives of the people missing on the ship, mostly children from the school………………”

This South Korean school principal thought he was responsible for the deaths of some 300 students and others in the capsized ferry, and decided to pay the price in his own way. He took his own life. Of course not all Koreans are like that: most are not like that. Someone like Kim Jong Un of the DPRK only gets fatter, he and his family, on the death and suffering he visits on his people.

look to our region, and responsibility. We might find a humane way for ‘regime change’, well, a relatively humane way, at least from the point of view of the masses: 

  • Arab leaders lose wars (they always lose wars against everybody else except their own peoples and maybe against the local swine as happened in Egypt under Hosni Mubarak). 
  • They cause death and suffering to their citizens: look at the huge numbers of political prisoners in most Arab countries from the Persian Gulf through Egypt and Libya and Sudan. Look at how many innocent people have died or been maimed in the past three years only.
  • They brazenly embezzle public property: the princes and potentates believe they were born owning it all; the dictators and generals believe they have earned it all by taking the serious risk of plotting to usurp power. Sort of like loot or war booty.
  • They often disappoint everyone, including each other; otherwise there would be no Borgia-style inter-family plots and coups in the royal palaces and the military barracks.
  • So, their performance is dismal, I am sure you agree with me (not that I care if you don’t). 
  • Yet they never think of hanging or shooting or burning or overdosing themselves into oblivion. True, there are not many mountains or tall bridges from which they could happily jump (a few do have access to very tall buildings and towers). 
  • They are not Japanese so a disappointing Arab despot or potentate could not get some trusted minister to swing the sword as he commits Seppuku by disemboweling himself (some foreigners might call it Hara-Kiri). Well, one can at least dream……
  • Nobody gets thrown out of helicopters anymore, and none seem to crash accidentally on purpose of late. Not since Saddam Hussein of Iraq vanished.

Speaking of leadership, their best chance of an honorable death might be something as pedestrian as a traffic accident (no pun was intended here, even I was pleasantly surprised). There are many opportunities for an honorable death on a fast local road, many innocent young citizens take advantage of them, unfortunately. It is disappointing that not any of the Arab potentates take advantage of them. Nobody in the region as as  deserving.
Maybe they don’t do it because it would be considered a sin, and there is always one sin these worthies avoid assiduously.

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