Email
Password
Remember meForgot password?
    Log in with Twitter

article imageSatirical French 2020 Olympic cartoons spark outrage in Japan

By Anne Sewell     Sep 13, 2013 in World
Tokyo - The Japanese government is not amused, as two cartoons appear in a French newspaper — one depicting sumo wrestlers with additional limbs and the other set in front of the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant — and both related to the 2020 Toyko Olympics.
The satirical weekly paper Le Canard Enchaine published the cartoons on Wednesday. One shows two sumo wrestlers with extra legs and arms, competing in front of the crippled nuclear plant with a sign reading:
"Marvelous! Thanks to Fukushima, sumo is now an Olympic sport."
French newspaper Le Canard Enchaine published two satirical cartoons depicting the Fukushima disaste...
French newspaper Le Canard Enchaine published two satirical cartoons depicting the Fukushima disaster as related to 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
YouTube
The other cartoon shows people in protective suits conducting radiation tests by the side of a pool at the crippled nuclear plant and saying "There is already a pool in Fukushima for the Olympics."
French newspaper Le Canard Enchaine published two satirical cartoons depicting the Fukushima disaste...
French newspaper Le Canard Enchaine published two satirical cartoons depicting the Fukushima disaster as related to 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
YouTube
According to a government spokesman, an official complaint is to be lodged against the newspaper by the Japanese embassy in France.
Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said at a press briefing on Thursday:
"This cartoon hurts the feelings of those who suffered through the great east Japan earthquake,"
"It is inappropriate and gives a wrong impression of the Fukushima contaminated water issue. It is extremely regrettable."
The Cabinet Secretary was referring to the March 2011 earthquake that triggered the devastating tsunami which damaged three of the Fukushima plant’s reactors.
The disaster has led to the plant accumulating radioactive water ever since with radioactive water leaking into the Pacific.
On Saturday last week, Tokyo won the right to host the 2020 Olympics on Saturday, beating out both Madrid and Istanbul.
This win was despite issues concerning the level of contamination at the crippled nuclear plant some 230 kilometers north of the capital.
Japanese Prime MInister, Shinzō Abe, assured the International Olympic Committee that the situation was "under control" and that he would be personally responsible for a plan to cope with the consequences.
Meanwhile the chief editor at Le Canard Enchaine's, Louis-Marie Horeau was "absolutely stupefied" at the reaction to "cartoons which seem to us to be anodyne."
"Just because we are being humorous does not mean we are insulting the victims. Here (in France) we can tackle tragedy with humor and apparently that's not the case in Japan." Horeau said.
It turns out this isn't the first time that the French media has made light of the Fukushima disaster.
Less than a year ago, France's TV channel France 2's "We're not lying" program showed a doctored photo of Eiji Kawashima, goalkeeper of the Japanese national football squad, with four arms.
The TV show then explained that the "Fukushima effect" had allowed Kawashima to keep goal so effectively in Japan's surprising defeat of France.
French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius reportedly apologized for the show later and the station expressed its regret.
More about France, Newspaper, Cartoons, Japan, Tokyo
More news from
Latest News
Top News