Japanese citizens alternatively relived and disappointed to learn their government isn’t spending time planning how to fight aliens.

Like most politicians, Seiji Osaka, member of Japan’s House of Representatives, would no doubt describe himself as a patriot. And like anyone who loves his country, he doesn’t want to see it ravaged by extraterrestrials.

Unlike many people, though, Osaka seems to think the possibility of alien invasion is an issue the government should be actively planning for. The 58-year-old representative from Hokkaido’s Eighth District (which contains roughly 500,000 constituents) recently made a formal inquiry to the Cabinet of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, asking if intrusion into Japan’s airspace by UFOs was covered under the rules of the country’s 2016 security bills regarding armed attacks and other situations that pose a potential threat to the country’s survival.

And just to be clear, Osaka wasn’t using the term “UFO” as a catch-all for any mysterious or unauthorized flying aircraft. Nor is he reacting to concerns over China’s burgeoning space program or North Korea’s missile development ambitions and asking about human-made vehicles being launched from space stations or rockets that have escaped Earth’s atmosphere. Osaka is specifically talking about aliens from outer space, telling reporters “We can’t say that the existence of so-called aliens or UFOs is an absolute impossibility.”

▼ Seiji Osaka


In response, the Cabinet issued a statement reminding Osaka that the government has never verified the existence of alien-piloted space craft, and that “No special discussion or examination is being carried out regarding responses to vehicles originating from outside the Earth that enter our country’s airspace.”

Critics may call this a shockingly negligent oversight on the part of the Abe administration, especially when taking into account that it’s been 40 years since video game developer Taito’s Space Invaders gave Japan the harsh wake-up call of danger from beyond the stars, with subsequent evidence of how critical a defense plan is, even if it’s just a few measly power-ups, provided by Gradius, R-Type, and Blazing Lazers.

▼ Those fat cats in the Diet must all be too distracted by modern consoles and mobile games to learn from the wisdom of classic shooters.

Online reactions have been largely snickering, however, with many questioning Osaka’s intelligence, maturity, or sanity. Others, while not outright opposing his call for alien defense, are criticizing his priorities, asking “Shouldn’t our real concern be kaiju?” and “Before worrying about aliens, Japan needs to formulate a Godzilla response plan.”

In his defense, Osaka isn’t necessarily calling for the government to commission an anti-alien branch of the Japan Self-Defense Forces (which, following anime protocol, would no doubt be staffed entirely with teens with raging hormones wearing needlessly stylish and sexualized uniforms/flight suits). “When considering security matters, I believe it’s important to think of the unthinkable,” he said. At its core, the basic idea of having some sort of response plan for every imaginable contingency, even the unlikely ones, isn’t so crazy, and while they’re in the minority, some online commenters have reacted by saying the government really should at least have some sort of framework in place to deal with a possible UFO scenario.

For now, though, it looks like we’ll just have to rely on Tokyo’s life-size Gundam statue scaring off any warmongering aliens.

Source: Mainichi Shimbun via Hachima Kiko
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