The Boruto Manga Confirms Konoha Hasn't Learned From Its Past

boruto-kawaki 2

WARNING: The following article contains major spoilers for Boruto: Naruto Next Generations #39 by Masashi Kishimoto, Mikio Ikemoto and Ukyo Kodachi, on sale now.

The Boruto manga has placed Naruto's son and Kawaki in a tricky situation after Jigen took the Hokage of Konoha into a prison dimension to battle. There, Jigen sealed Naruto away, leaving a badly wounded Sasuke fleeing to Sakura, which effectively gave the Kara terrorist cell a major victory.

But rather than rallying together, the senior military of Konoha has begun making rash decisions that are alienating Kawaki, and serve as stark reminders of just how much the iconic ninja village hasn't learned from its past mistakes.

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When Shikamaru, Naruto's right-hand man and lifelong friend, comes to investigate with the ANBU cops, he traps Kawaki with his Shadow Paralysis jutsu and has the military create a chakra barrier, enclosing everyone in Naruto's home. No one can enter or leave, and Shikamaru makes it clear this house arrest is to also protect Boruto, Sarada and Mitsuki. However, he's very skeptical of Kawaki as he admits he thinks the boy Naruto adopted is indeed a spy for Kara.

Boruto balks at the theory because Kawaki has fit in well as his and Himawari's adoptive brother and as a protege to Naruto himself. He trusts his rival and urges Shikamaru to stop defaming the boy's character, especially without proof. However, the deputy doesn't care for the protests as he simply believes Kawaki is a weapon of mass destruction and that he played Naruto, setting the Hokage up for Jigen. The fact Kawaki is still unharmed makes him even more suspicious, although Kawaki doesn't contest the claims since he understands the evidence against him.

Still, Shikamaru's jumping to conclusions is reminiscent of him and the village alienating Sasuke in the past as well, which ultimately led to the Uchiha prodigy breaking bad and joining the Akatsuki. They treated him as an outcast due to the bad reputation of his clan, and this paved the way for Sasuke to become a terrorist who wanted to wipe the village out. He'd eventually regain his senses, but this paranoid behavior and sense of xenophobia is what turned him into a monster, and it's what Naruto preached against when he tried to convince his staff to believe in the good in Kawaki decades later. He saw him as another Sasuke who needed nurturing and to believe in the concept of family.

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Shikamaru's actions reek of ignorance, and they show that ANBU is still plagued by a regressive way of thought. They barely recovered after triggering Sasuke, and this incident also recalls how the village treated a young Naruto when they found out he had the Nine Tails Demon Fox, Kurama, inside him. Instead of embracing him the way Kakashi and the then-Hokage Hiruzen Sarutobi wanted, Konoha didn't trust him and blamed him for everything bad happening.

Now, it's clear that this Village of Fire still hasn't learned that this kind of phobia doesn't work out well, which is shocking considering that the two boys they feared the most in Sasuke and Naruto turned out to be their best ninjas and their eventual saviors against Kaguya in the last Great Ninja War. Hopefully, Shikamaru and his generals will wise up soon, because Naruto won't like how they're treating Kawaki. If they're not careful, the village could be doomed to repeat the mistakes of the past and turn Karaki into a powerful enemy.

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