From Ground Zero Japan: A Moving Display Of Loyalty

March 17, 2011

There are some who just don’t get the bond between a man and his dog. But even I was unprepared for the level of “humanity, compassion and loyalty” within the canine community you’re about to witness below.

It’s a video that will move any animal lover to tears: Rescuers searching the remains of the debris that was once a seacoast town in the Arahama area of Japan come upon a dog that has somehow managed to survive the earthquake and the tsunami that followed. The animal is clearly in shock, disoriented and in distress.

The workers attempt to get the dog to come to them so they can take it for food, water and medical treatment. But the dog steadfastly refuses to leave with them. He turns and walks away, walking in a stagger that seems to confirm the exhaustion and confusion that has engulfed it.   

As the rescuers watch the dog walk away, they discuss his plight:

We are in Arahama area. Looks like there is a dog. There is a dog. He looks tired and dirty. He must have been caught in the tsunami. He looks very dirty.

He has a collar. He must be someone’s pet. He has a silver collar. He is shaking. He seems very afraid.

Then, they notice why the dog has walked away from them. There, some 50 feet away from them, another dog lies in the debris motionless.

             Oh, there is another dog! I wonder if he is dead.


Right there. There is another dog right next to the one sitting down. He is not moving. I wonder. I wonder if he is alright.

The dog is protecting him.

Yes. He is protecting the dog. That is why he did not want us to approach them. He was trying to keep us at bay.

I can’t watch this! This is a very difficult to watch.

Oh… Look! He is moving!  He is alive! I am so happy to see that he is alive!

Yes! Yes! He is alive!

He looks to be weakened. We need to them to be rescued soon. We really want them rescued soon.

Oh good. He’s getting up!

Let me assure you, that there IS a happy ending to this story: Both dogs have now been rescued and taken for treatment and are recovering.

In the military, soldiers take a great deal of pride in “never leaving a  brother behind…”

It would appear that’s true also in the canine world.

I hope, for some of you, watching this video will bring you one step closer to understanding that there’s no such thing as “just a dog.” They come from God, like us, equipped with a heart that is capable of loving, with the courage to defend that which he/she believes in and the compassion and loyalty to NOT leave a friend behind to die alone.

Do they have the same reasoning power of humans? That is, perhaps, open to debate. But they share the basic elements that supposedly make us “human.” They know joy. Sorrow. Happiness, Contentment, Fear, Anger. And for those of you who suffer from one form of depression or another, dogs also share that state of mind.

Watch the video and you’ll witness a prime example of canine loyalty.

Then, to put it into some perspective, think about how many other humans, dogs and other assorted pets didn’t make it through or, worse, made it through but are in a place where time will run out before they are rescued. Welcome to the real toll in terms of human and animal life.


Gerry Ashley

Addendum: Having a better understanding about the loyalty of dogs and their ability to experience confusion, disorientation, loneliness, loss and depression, now think about the dogs  who sit in shelters waiting for someone to give them a new lease on life. If you are in a position to provide a home for such a loving animal, I hope this video will move you to do so. I did three years ago last month and my life is forever changed for the better because of it.

If you are not in a position to do that, however, a donation to your local humane society or no-kill shelter is always put to good use.

As for the two dogs in this video… well, I certainly believe in the power of prayer. And that doesn’t cost a dime.


A Simple Solution for North Korea

July 3, 2009

Ah yes… Good ol’ North Korea – the country we’ve basically been at war with for the last 50+ years. That crazy, zany place where indoctrination and starvation of its citizens are almost at super-saturation, and its leader might best be described as a Charlie Manson on ‘Ludes. And as we approach this national holiday, N. Korea fires off its perfunctory missiles as a bluster and “warning”.

So here’s the problem(s) that we have with N. Korea…

  • Its leadership is both loonier and dumber than an outhouse rat in August.
  • In theory, it has the technology to fire missiles that could hit Hawaii, not to mention Japan.
  • Seemingly, there ain’t much we can do about North Korea since our opening a can of whoop tush on them would flood China with refugees, and China would be none too happy with that. And given that China is holding a ton of our debt, it looks like we’re just going to have to shut up and eat our July Fourth hot dogs and hope that the Iranian ambassadors don’t try to crash the party. Except…

Except that we owe China ridiculous mountains of money. They don’t want to see us start printing dollars like fiends (welcome to the world of hyper-inflation), and at the same time they don’t want to see us go completely down the tubes. (As the bookies say, “Better a living deadbeat than a dead debtor.”) So we have some leverage there, in its own pathetic guise.

So how about we pivot on two simple facts. First, the Chinese and the Japanese really aren’t very fond of each other.  Their historical mistrust and animosity toward each other are, well, deep. Secondly, we have boomer (nuke) subs.

Suppose we were to perform a sort of coordinated “lend-lease” of a couple of those subs with the Japanese, with the understanding that while we technically own the subs, their operation and firepower would be a joint issue handled by both America and Japan. And should missiles find their way toward us or our allies… Ummm… That would make the Chinese sit up and take notice, and they’re the only ones who can really rearrange North Korea.

Everyone has talked about this situation, and I dare say that most believe that China and Japan are the power players… But we still have leverage. Let’s hope we have the guts to finally end this disaster and start a regime change. All it will take is a boomer or two putatively in the hands of the Japanese in the East China Sea.

Alan Speakman