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Naruto May Have Just Ignited Another Konoha Civil War

WARNING: The following contains major spoilers for Boruto: Naruto Next Generations #35, on sale now.

With the rising threat of the all-powerful Jigen and his Kara terrorist cell, Konoha is reliving some of the fear it experienced in the days of the Akatsuki. The village was annihilated in the arc involving Pain and his minions, which inspired a teen Naruto to unite all of the ninja villages.

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However, following his ascension to Hokage, Naruto is quickly learning you can't please everybody, as some of the younger shinobi are now upset at the way he's giving preferential treatment to Kawaki, the living weapon Jigen wants to turn into an instrument of destruction. And so, as the new generation voices its concerns, the Boruto manga is revealing shades of the civil war that engulfed the village during the Uchiha uprising.

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For the uninitiated, this civil war rippled through the Naruto and Naruto: Shippuden era, going as far back as to when Konoha was formed. After years of wars, Hashirama and Tobirama of the Senju clan finally brokered peace with Madara and the Uchiha clan, and they united to form Konoha, the Land of Fire. Sadly, tension existed for decades afterward, as the Uchiha never shook off the perception that they're bloodthirsty, due to their unique eye powers. That resulted in Madara leaving the village, as he couldn't align his philosophies with the Senju brothers (the first two Hokages), and while the Uchihas remained, they lived on the outskirts, shunned by everyone else and used only for military missions.

That led to a coup, but under the third Hokage, Hiruzen Sarutobi, and Danzo, Itachi Uchiha killed his own clan and left young Sasuke behind to embark on a journey of pain. Looking back, Naruto and Sasuke, after mending their rivalry, made it clear Konoha would never again become a place that allowed hatred to poison the lives of people inside its walls. But as Naruto trains Kawaki, it seems the young ninjas no longer support him, and they are actually questioning his method of leadership.

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Ironically, they're led by Sasuke's daughter, Sarada, and you can see the same concern Hiruzen had when the Uchihas planned their slaughter. She wonders why Naruto shunned them, as well as his own son, Boruto, and is treating Kawaki, whom they think is an infiltrator sent by Jigen, as someone special. That mindset, seeing others in Konoha being treated with adoration, turned the Uchihas into outsiders, and they stopped communicating with the Hokages. Now, the young ninjas are surprisingly swift in their words, echoing the same kind of sentiment. It's not anywhere near violent, but Sarada sees it as unfair because someone of Naruto's prowess never once considered taking the time to train any of them, even as a class.

She even wants to succeed him as Hokage, but this biased training won't make Konoha an even greater stronghold in her eyes. The civil war is brewing, at least in terms of how the teens are thinking, and in the past Konoha has seen revolts sparked by less. It's a time of peace now, so it doesn't seem likely to get extreme, but with the shinobi thinking Naruto is fickle, you never know. What hurts them most is, apart from looking like he's easily manipulated, Naruto is treating an outsider better than them. Seeing as Sasuke's daughter is most vocal about it, it might well place Sasuke in a tough spot as he could relate to Kawaki needing a mentor like Naruto.

After all, folks felt Kakashi abandoned Naruto to train Sasuke as a teen, but we soon realized it was because he didn't want him to become like Itachi. Still, Sarada and her gang don't have all this context, but you can't blame them because they're taking everything at face value. And as it stands, while Naruto wants to help an at-risk youth, it might come at a high price.

Boruto #36 goes on sale July 21.

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