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6 May, 2024 18:12

Japanese volunteer explains why he is fighting on Russia’s side against Ukraine

The conflict is vastly misrepresented in his country, whose foreign policy is dictated by the US and NATO, Daisaku Kaneko told RT
Japanese volunteer explains why he is fighting on Russia’s side against Ukraine

Moscow should not be blamed for the conflict in Ukraine, Daisaku Kaneko, a Japanese national who joined the Russian Army to fight against Kiev, said in an exclusive interview with RT aired on Monday. According to Kaneko, the West is leading a propaganda campaign against Russia and is misrepresenting the conflict.

Kaneko was in Thailand when the hostilities between Moscow and Kiev broke out in February 2022, working as a shooting instructor for the Thai Army. He says this allowed him to compare the coverage of the situation from two perspectives – the strongly pro-Ukrainian Japanese media and the neutral media in Thailand.

“I feel very sorry about this whole situation. Because the Japanese media presents the events in a matter that’s convenient for America and NATO, and ordinary Japanese people believe them,” he stated, noting that early on, more than 90% of the Japanese people were convinced that the conflict “was [Russian President Vladimir] Putin’s war” and that “only Russia was to blame” for the hostilities.

“I realized that the Japanese media was wrong,” he said, adding that this realization made him move to Russia to join the country’s military effort.

I wanted to show the US that there is a Japanese man who is on Russia’s side.

According to Kaneko, his home country’s fierce anti-Russia stance is the result of Japan blindly following US orders. Japan has been a staunch supporter of Ukraine in the conflict, taking part in the Western sanctions on Russia and cutting reliance on the country’s energy resources by phasing out oil and coal imports. It has also provided around $12 billion in financial aid to support Kiev’s war effort.

I feel pity for the Japanese government. It is very obedient. It does whatever the US tells it to do.

Kaneko says, however, that the attitude towards the conflict is gradually changing in Japan.

“There is a growing number of Japanese who understand that the blame [for the conflict] should not simply be pinned on Russia… If indeed this is Putin’s war, then why does it last so long? The Japanese are wondering that, people are beginning to question the Maidan events in 2014, which happened prior to the operation, and the associated implications,” he said, referring to the starting point of the hostilities in Donbass, which later led to a full-blown conflict.

Kaneko has taken part in several battles, and was badly injured during fighting in the strategic Donbass city of Avdeevka, which was liberated by Moscow, in November last year. Still, he says he does not plan to return to Japan even after the conflict is over, having “fallen in love” with Russia and its people.

“I have fallen in love with Russia so much that I’m not willing to go back… Russians are very kind and friendly, Russians are complex people, but when you get on friendly terms, they do not let you down – they are very caring. That is a trait that the Japanese have lost, we used to have it but now it is all gone,” he said.