To preserve their country’s proud tradition of pacifism, Japanese lawmakers today began fighting one another during a legislative session.
The scrum, as news outlets are terming the frankly hilarious squirming pile-on, was the apparent result of some cunning legislative maneuvering essential to turning a “highly sensitive” and extremely controversial “security” bill into law. The details, via the AP:
Japan’s ruling party pushed contentious security bills through a legislative committee Thursday, catching the opposition by surprise and causing chaos in the chamber.
Opposition lawmakers surged toward the chairman’s seat as they realized something was up after ruling party legislators had gathered at the podium to protect him.
As the scrum intensified, ruling party lawmakers still in their seats stood up to signal their support for the legislation, though there didn’t appear to be an audible announcement of what they were voting on.
Opponents were reportedly so fervent—and physical—because the bills could result in Japan’s military waging foreign wars, and Japan has considered its military to be used only in national self-defense since the country’s defeat in World War II. The bill, which still needs to pass through the upper house of parliament, would allow troops to conduct military exercises alongside other countries like the U.S., regardless of whether Japan is under attack.