Ah Shinto, you’re the stoner roommate of world religions. People pride you on your laid-back “everything is god” and “it’s okay to have other religions” policies. Often times they wish they could be just like you. However, when you forget to pay the internet bill for the fourth time that way of thinking gets old real quick.

In Shinto’s case, that ISP’s final warning came in the form of Yasukuni Shrine, a shrine which serves to hold the souls of those who died in the Japanese armed forces. When it came time to include some convicted war criminals among those souls, Shinto coughed and said, “Sure man, they probably did something good along the way.”

And so, Yasukuni Shrine has become a political lightning rod inspiring right-wing nationalists in Japan and spurning the nation’s neighbors. Thankfully, this Obon season, when Japanese people habitually visit shrines to honor those who have gone before us, bread-headed children’s superhero, Anpanman, flew into Yasukuni and lent some sanity to an otherwise volatile situation.

To put the Yasukuni Shrine situation another way, let’s say there’s a cemetery with Hitler buried in it. In the same place lies a guy named Franz who was always up for beers and wasn’t really into the Nazi regime (maybe even tried to bring it down from the inside). Each being in the same vicinity but having separate graves was no problem because you could pray to your buddy Franz’s grave and toss a dog turd on Hitler’s on your way out. Simple.

Now (in a completely original premise I just came up with) lets say a giant tornado comes by and picks up all the graves thus making a Soulnado©. Soulnado© doesn’t attack anything. It just kind of hangs around making a spectacle of itself. Then Ian Ziering and Tara Reid come along with chainsaws trying to kill Soulnado, and rightfully so since Hitler’s in there. However, various politicians also come out and say “let Soulnado© live” also rightfully so since quite a few honest people like Franz are also a part of it. Just as things come to a head, Anpanman, the champion of justice and security, flies in to make things right. He doesn’t really do anything though, just kind of leans against the railing and tells the police than he isn’t bothering anyone.

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Ridiculous isn’t it? Well, just replace Hitler with one of the thousand convicted Japanese war criminals enshrined at Yasukuni, Franz with the other two and a half million Japanese service men and women, Ian Ziering with China, Tara Reid with Korea, Soulnado© with Yasukuni Shrine, and Anpanman with Anpanman. Then you will be pretty much up to speed with the sanity of Asian international relations.

Source: Hachima Kiko (Japanese)
Images: Twitter – magi0311, imullia