Let’s have a war! The reincarnation of a war criminal, The LDP, and militarising Japan

The current Japanese government put out a comic book encouraging their platform for revising Japan’s “Peace Constitution” but beneath the cuteness is a return to Japanese pre-war fascist ideology. This is a parody version of one scene from the actual manga. 😉 Rich Nation, Strong Army: Japanese Militarism Redux War clouds threaten northeast Asia. One state within the region continues to raise its military spending to record... Read More

Brand Japan, Brand Abe: A Clash of Narratives

Written by Nancy Snow Two decades ago I was working at the United States Information Agency (USIA), an independent foreign affairs agency of the U.S. Government. We were separate from the Department of State—the counterpart to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Japan, and our primary task was Public Diplomacy. Some called what we did government propaganda. To be precise, the slogan stamped across the agency façade was “Telling America’s Story... Read More

Autumn Equinox (秋分の日): Honor your ancestors, remember the departed

Prayers for the departed at Muenjizobosatsu in Shinjuku, the patron deity (buddha) of those who die without family members, or in obscurity, or with no one to mourn them. Today is Autumn Equinox (秋分の日), the day of the year when day and evening are of equal length. The day not only marks the change between the hot summer and the cool fall, but is a national holiday to honor ancestors and grieve for the departed. It’s not a bad thing to... Read More

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe plagiarizes himself: If you can recycle nuclear fuel, why not speeches?

If you felt a sense of déjà vu when listening to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe give a speech at the ceremony commemorating the 69th anniversary of the Hiroshima nuclear bombing on August 6th, you’re not alone. Parts of Abe’s speech are nearly identical to the one he gave last year, the most notable different being that he changed “68 years ago” to “69 years ago.” I decided to take a page out of Abe’s book and copy and... Read More

Abe tells women to “shine,” but, really, he meant “die!”

A post that was meant to to show Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s support for women, due to some bad English usage with a different meaning when read as Japanese, ended up saying, “Hey all you women in Japan, drop dead!”   A blog post written by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to show his support for women backfires when people pointed out that the English word “shine” can actually be read as the Japanese word for... Read More