[Tokyo] – Prime Minister Shinzo Abe may make an offering at Yasukuni Shrine later this week, media reported on Wednesday. The news comes as a surprise, because Abe himself had previously made clear that he would skip the traditional visit to the shrine this year.
Critics have pointed out that Abe visiting the shrine, a symbol of Japanese wartime aggression, is likely to harm diplomatic relations with China and South Korea.
However, during today’s Diet session, Abe explained his motives for making his visit to the shrine, as well as his plan to make the visit diplomatically acceptable even in the eyes of his most passionate adversaries.
He explained how he will visit the shrine on Thursday, “wearing a passport with the name Guy Incognito”, as well as “wearing a fake mustache”. The Prime Minister stressed that, thus, he will officially not be at the shrine, nor be recognizable.
“Whether they were the Japanese equivalent of Himmler or Göring or not, it is important for us to always remember the people who fought to protect Japan from dangerous outsiders, ” Abe explained. “However, in order to avoid international criticism, it is sometimes necessary to twist and turn, and make questionable moves”.
Manufacturers of fake mustaches have praised Abe’s plan, and hope that his move will result in a boost for their slacking sales figures.