Japanese Prime Minister Assassinated With Homemade Firearm – Firearms are Old Tech

Can't stop the signal, Mal.

Image via New York Times
Former Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe, was assassinated early this morning. Gun laws being so strict in Japan, it was shocking to many, but the first inkling that something truly unusual was going on was the volume of smoke accompanying the shots, and the awkward size and shape of the weapon.

As it turns out, this was a homemade gun, something we might call a “zip gun” built to function as a shotgun. He didn’t even use shotshells, but rather seems to have made his own black powder muzzle loading shotgun. The police have recently reported that he’d made several such weapons, some with as many as 9 barrels. He also had made his own bombs, likely also black powder, but decided against using them as he felt explosives were less reliable than a volley of shot at close range.

Guns being nearly nonexistent in Japan, the fear had been surrounding 3D printed weapons, or those smuggled into the country. The unfortunate actions of a man motivated to political violence for reasons still unknown has reminded us all that firearms are, at their core, a 700 year old technology. The gun used to end Abe’s life was, aside from the reportedly electronic ignition, functionally identical to a 14th century “Handgonne” used by medieval soldiers. This is not rocket science, and the parts and materials necessary to build even significantly more complicated weapons are readily available to anyone with the will to make it happen, gun control or not.

To summarize, Shinzo Abe was shot to death in a country with gun laws that make New York look like Texas, with a homemade shotgun you could assemble with $40, a trip to Home Depot, and an hour of your day. You can’t stop the signal, once it’s out there, for good or ill.
Lars Smith
Lars is one of Gat's Wordmancers, having come to the company after years of experience in biology, agriculture, management, marketing, and writing. He found the gun community through prepping, and after realizing where he was on the Dunning-Kruger scale, jumped into the self-defense community with both feet. Since then, the 80 hours of professional firearms instruction he's taken has only made him hungry for more.