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· April, 2007

Stories about Japan from April, 2007

Japan: Media has its eyes wide shut

  30 April 2007

Ampontan posted a detailed and scathing attack on American media (notably CNN and AP) for their failure to catch the “story staring them in the face”: “In the past two days, Prime Minister Abe and the government of Japan just issued its Declaration of Independence from the legacy of World...

Japan: What will happen after Golden Week?

  30 April 2007

Social Democratic Party MP Hosaka Nobuto and former diplomat Amaki Naoto say things will start moving in the Diet after Golden Week (one week period with several national holidays). Hosaka expresses his concern[Ja] about a recent trend in which the ruling coalition has forced through several bills and also points...

Japan: Why are checks not used in Japan?

  29 April 2007

Joe at Japan Law Blog explains the reasons why, unlike in many other countries, in Japan checks never caught on: “Japan has an entire legal structure for the payment systems familiar to Americans and Europeans. Yet if you live in Japan all your life, you may never write a check...

Japan: Interview with Sankei Shimbun Editor about Comfort Women Issue

  29 April 2007

Trans Pacific Radio reports on an interview with Sankei Shimbun Editor Yoshihisa Komori, conducted in late-March for the PBS series Foreign Exchange with Fareed Zakaria, on the “Comfort Women” issue. TPR notes that “three things struck me [about Komori]: He looks off camera quite a bit, he brings up every...

Japan: Has the age of the Internet arrived?

  28 April 2007

Japanese blogger hirochan comments on the recent elections in Japan [Ja] and gives his insights into the nature of the role of the Internet in political and election campaigns in Japan. He points out the fact that Japanese politicians are not maximizing the potential of the Internet as a tool,...

Japan: Reactions to Tokyo Governor Ishihara's re-election

  27 April 2007

On April 8 and April 22 nationwide local elections were held throughout Japan, gubernatorial elections on the 8th and local assembly and municipal elections on the 22nd. Among 13 gubernatorial elections, the Tokyo elections attracted the most attention, with incumbent Ishihara Shintarou running for a third term. Over the previous...

Japan: Three Days Priest

  27 April 2007

Harvey from Japan Newbie explained the expression of mikka bouzu, three days priest, which is used to describe someone who is unable to stick with something they have started to do.

Japan: Thoughts on the Abe “apology”

  27 April 2007

Japan, Beyond the Tamagawa reminds readers, with respect to recent comments by Prime Minsiter Abe Shinzo about the Comfort Women issue, that Abe “didn't intend [his comments] to raise such a stink. He did say what he personally has said he believed for years. Japan's Imperial Army did not force...

Japan: Reflections on postwar “Child's Play”

  27 April 2007

Debito reproduces a passage from John Dower's famous book “Embracing Defeat” dealing with the games children played in post-WW2 Japan, including “holding a mock black market, playing prostitute and customer, and recreating left-wing political demonstrations.” Debito comments that Dower's account “is something rarely considered in historical accounts: The barometer of...

Japan: Cellphone-operated Remote Control Home System

  26 April 2007

Edo introduced the latest cellphone-operated remote control home system developed by NTT-Neomeit: To control devices, users access a web page via cellphone and select the desired operations. The commands are then sent via the web to a wireless router in the home, which relays signals to an infrared transmitter and...

Japan: Pre-election protest party

  26 April 2007

Amamiya Karin writes in Magazine 9 [Ja] about protest parties held in Koenji last weekend organized by Suginami Ward Assembly candidate Matsumoto Hajime. Although Matsumoto finally lost the election, the party was a great success, featuring live music, dancing, and plenty of stage-diving. Matsumoto, one of the youngest contenders, pushed...

Japan: Chinese-Japanese Rapper Nycca

  26 April 2007

James from Japan Probe introduced a trilingual Rapper Nycca. The post is linked to a youtube video of the singer's self intro and rap in three languages: Japanese, Cantonese and Putonghua.

Japan: Abe apologizes to US media, not Asian people

  26 April 2007

On the apologies made by Abe in an interview last weekend with Newsweek, Amaki Naoto, a former Japanese diplomat who resigned protesting Japan's involvement in the U.S. attack on Iraq, comments that in apologizing about the Comfort Women issue Abe was “putting aside his political belief” in order simply to...

Japan: Analysis of election results

  26 April 2007

Matt Dioguardi at Japan in amber has posted commentary, tabulated data, and study notes on Japan's recent by-elections and local elections. Matt writes: “the DPJ strategy in Okinawa seemed confused, switching midway. First they focused on local union issues, then switched to national issues.”

Japan: Revision of customs and trade regulations

  25 April 2007

Japan Observer reports on plans by the Abe government to revise its rules and regulations to comply with international standards, commenting that such plans do not “much to change the structure of the Japanese economy over the long term, nor […] address the concerns of Japanese citizens about their future...

Japan: Update on the Kokaryo Case

  25 April 2007

Mutantfrog Travelogue has posted a detailed update on the Kokaryo Chinese students dormitory in Kyoto, the subject of a longtime battle between Taiwan/The Republic of China (ROC) and the People's Republic of China (PRC) and the longest running lawsuit in Japan. Mutantfrog reports that “While the outcome of the case...

About our Japan coverage

Nevin Thompson is our Japan editor. Email him story ideas or volunteer to write.


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