“CBS Mornings” labeled former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe a “polarizing right-wing nationalist” in a Friday segment within hours after his death.
Abe died at the Nara Medical Center in Japan from a gunshot wound to the chest early Friday. A gunman fired two shots at Abe during his speech in support of the Liberal Democratic Party candidates ahead of the Upper House elections. CBS News reporter Elizabeth Palmer pointed to his “right-wing nationalist” political association, including his several meetings with former President Donald Trump.
“A polarizing figure, he was a right-wing nationalist and conservative and a fierce supporter of Japan’s military,” Palmer said. “He fought to amend the country’s pacifist constitution in the face of the rising threat from China. While in office, Abe met former President Donald Trump several times to reaffirm Japan’s military trade alliances with the United States. His political opinions were controversial, but the country is united in shock and sympathy at the news of his death.”
In a separate “CBS Morning News” segment, Palmer called him a “right-wing hawk” for his support for a stronger military. (RELATED: Photo Allegedly Shows Homemade Gun Used To Kill Former Japanese Prime Minister)
“Abe is certainly a polarizing figure in Japan, a right-wing hawk who had demanded changes to Japan’s pacifist constitution,” Palmer said. “But this act has shocked this country which has very little gun violence normally and even his political opponents are wishing him well.”
Legacy media outlets have been quick to point to Abe’s political ideology. NPR deleted a tweet Friday morning calling the former prime minister a “divisive arch-conservative” above a link reporting on his death. They then posted a separate tweet calling him an “ultranationalist.”
Authorities in Japan captured and arrested the alleged 41-year-old gunman who reportedly had a grudge against Abe, according to the CBS segment. The former prime minister, 67, suffered from cardiopulmonary arrest and showed no vital signs upon arrival to the hospital, Dr. Hidetada Fukushima said.