Sunday, February 25, 2007

Japanese Ambassador Honors Wounded Warriors

Japan Honors Wounded Warriors
Wounded veterans enjoy traditional Japanese cuisine during an evening at Ambassador Ryozo Kato's residence Feb. 23 in Washington, D.C.
Defense Dept. photo by John J. Kruzel
U.S. Army Pfc. Marissa Strock , left, a double-leg amputee wounded in Iraq, and her mother, Sandi Ogden, follow Japanese Lt. Col. Ichiro Sato's instructions as they fold origami paper into cranes during an evening at Ambassador Ryozo Kato's residence Feb. 23 in Washington, D.C.
Defense Dept. photo by John J. Kruzel

In Japan, people make origami paper cranes for the sick and injured as a prayer for their recovery. A group of 70 wounded US troops and their families found cranes waiting for them on their dinner tables February 23, when they attended a dinner in their honor at the residence of Japanese Ambassador Ryozo Kato.

Kato said they "carry the burden of service to their country," and he thanked them for their "service to the larger ideals that our two countires represent." Japan is a close ally to the United States, and a close ally in the war on terror.

Kato delivered a message fro Japan's prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, "the grateful people of Japan wish each of you health and success in the years ahead, just as we wish for the nation you serve."

Kato told the troops that although the two cultures differ, US troops represent Japan's 'samurai spirit.' "Samurais serve with valor, with honor, with loyalty, with respectful, ethical behavior, and so have you."

After a feast of Japanese cuisine, Japanese Self Defense Forces officers taught the guests how to fold origami cranes. "We make a crane to show our deepest compassion. This evening's dinner is a metaphor for a large paper crane.

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Thank you Japan!!

Isn't it interesting that our wounded warriors are celebrated and honored by one of our allies? Wouldn't you think that our multi-millionaire members of Congress would do something like this? Or, donate to one of the many Wounded Warrior Projects?

8 comments:

FbL said...

What a wonderful story! Is this one of the continuations of the dinners that used to be held at Fran O'Brien's?

And FG, do you have an original link to this story? I'd love to use it: I tried to Google it, but couldn't find anything.

FbL said...

Nevermind. Found it on the DoD website. :)

Flag Gazer said...

Glad you found the story.
No, this is in NO WAY related to Fran O'Brien's. This is the Japanese government saying thank you to our wounded warriors.

FbL said...

What I meant was that the Aleethia Foundation has been helping to sponsor and coordinate dinners since Fran O'Brien's closed. For example, there have been dinners at the Italian Embassy and the Department of the Interior as well as various businesses since the original Fran O'Brien's closed. In fact, it sounds very much like the Italian Embassy dinner. So, I was wondering if this was part of that effort. I especially thought so since Wolfowitz was there (he attended the Fran's dinners when he was still Deputy Defense Secretary and has continued to attend the dinners since he left office and Fran's closed).

Anyway, not a huge point. But I just wondered...

Wade Huntsinger said...

Each time I get on your site I am amazed. Thanks for all your work on this site. I don't have much time these days but when I get online, I always check you out. God bless you

The WordSmith from Nantucket said...

Excellent story. One of my passions is origami; so this is doubly special to me.

The WordSmith from Nantucket said...

Here's a video I made, using "Kamiflage" paper to fold peace cranes ("kami" means paper). I consider the military as true peacekeepers, representing the paradox of war and peace.

Flag Gazer said...

Wade - Thank you for your visits - I am enjoying the journal of your travels...

Wordsmith - the video is outstanding! Thank you for directing me to your origami site!