Nationalism gains ground in election campaign

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  • 9

    some14some

    “A natural result of this is that it widens the economic gap and therefore fuels nationalism.”

    so failing to revive economy for more than two decades govt is left with no option & promoting nationalism?

  • -2

    davidnorell

    As long as outside countries like China and South Korea keep on being so ''looking down'' on Japan and reminding Japan of its responsibility of war crimes from WWI(as a way to win any argument against Japan.)I then there will be more moves to the far right. Japan has had 50 years of saying ''it is sorry''. To push this for so long when Japan has been the quiet neighbor can only go so far. Many moderate Japanese are now saying ''Enough!''. If this goes any further, China and South Korea will have to deal with a militant Japan for their(China's and South Korea's ) nasty behavior. If they push Japan too far, then Japan could easily lash out, develop nuclear weapons and take the fight back to them. We could see a ''go back'' to old Imperial ways as well.

  • 2

    davidnorell

    Correction, it was supposed to read ''WWII''

  • 11

    Yubaru

    Takeshi Nakajima, associate professor of politics at Hokkaido University, says a mood of “neo-liberalism” is rising in Japan, which is not dissimilar to the Tea Party movement in the U.S.

    I for one would hope that the Japanese people learn from the one-hit wonder of the Tea Party movement and realize that it's doomed to failure from the start.

    Right now "nationalism" neo or otherwise is not what Japan needs. It's loosing it's focus on taking care of itself and looking to take attention away from domestic issues and focus on rather minor (in the bigger scheme of things) external issues.

  • 5

    komuso killa

    This is not surprising in the least. Japan is a country that cannot escape its past.

    Footage posted on the Internet shows the mask of civility soon slipping, as the men let out a volley of racist abuse at a city official.

    Again, not surprising in the least, and not difficult to imagine. But protesting a Korean dance?? Grow up Japan and get over yourself! Can you deny that you borrowed so much culture and tradition from the mainland? Two words: Rice farming. Chinese, Korean, and Japanese are so similar, it would be like people in the U.S. protesting Russian Ballet because of political tensions.

    Bruised by a row with China over a set of islands that both sides claim, and a spat with South Korea over another bit of disputed real estate, the Japanese public is feeling less neighborly.

    So, if you get the islands, then what? Your country's internal problems will still be there waiting for you. Using the dispute of the islands as a ploy to gain votes is a given, but how will that benefit the immediate political and economic situation in Japan?

  • 4

    komuso killa

    Pride.

  • 2

    overchan

    Im right. Hate brings hate. Sino japanese war its been more than 70 years. People should forget and stop complaining so much. Let japan do as it wishes. Japan isnt bothering China

  • -5

    saidani

    “Neo-liberalism advocates a political agenda of small government and self-responsibility,” he said, citing the rise of Abe and Hashimoto. “A natural result of this is that it widens the economic gap and therefore fuels nationalism.”

    Right...because increased socialism has solved all of Japan's problems. That economic gap has been widening for the past decade even as Japan's welfare system has grown. It is a lash-back against two decades of failed domestic, economic, and foreign policy failures that are causing a more conservative feeling in Japan, a shift that the socialist media, academics, and government labels "nationalism" in order to frighten the public.

    It is not small government and individualism that should be feared. Instead, people should fear becoming dependent on a corrupt and power-hungry bureaucracy, an inept political class, and the Japanese elite who sold out to the West 70 years ago.

  • 1

    davidnorell

    Just remember, your average Japanese is like any American(USA) they have short term goals. But you get them riled up and keep on getting them upset and there is an end game in this. Only a small percentage, most that read all that is listed in these articles, are philosophical enough that they would see the ''writing on the proverbial wall'' that nationalism is not the way to go. But passions are not based on Logic.

  • 4

    Thomas Anderson

    This is Japan. A country with no racism.

    Honestly whatever happened to anti-discrimination and racism laws? Japan needs join the 21st century already. Racism IS mainstream in Japan no matter how many idiots deny it.

  • 6

    warispeace

    This shows how there is always a fragment of society that can be swayed by fear-mongering politicians and media talking heads who use ethnic identity to enhance their power, influence and wealth. The positive side is it helps double-down the initiative of a larger segment of the public who believe that loving or at least tolerating your neighbour or neighbouring country is the only long-term way to live in peace and with peace of mind.

  • 10

    michikokada

    "This kind of (ultranationalist) atmosphere or mood is emerging… and it’s possible that tough talks could captivate the public, but that would be the most dangerous thing for the nation,”-Noda-san was right to be not so right, shame most people don't see the truth...Japanese is not that fragile, shouldn't be "bruised" that easily. The real Japan should be a brave and responsible nation admits what it has done wrong during WWII and co-operate with his two neighbors which cultural and economic ties grown from the same cord, it turn this will help Japan solve internal crisis, everybody wins, much more constructive.

  • -2

    Thomas Anderson

    Right...because increased socialism has solved all of Japan's problems.

    Actually it was the "socialism" that allowed Japan to recover from WW2.

    That economic gap has been widening for the past decade even as Japan's welfare system has grown.

    Income inequality has been widened by Koizumi, a conservative.

    It is a lash-back against two decades of failed domestic, economic, and foreign policy failures that are causing a more conservative feeling in Japan

    Wait, it was conservatism and lack of will that caused the lost decades.

    , a shift that the socialist media, academics, and government labels "nationalism" in order to frighten the public.

    The media act as the cheer leaders for the ultra-conservative LDP and the Restoration Party.

  • 0

    Thomas Anderson

    I've been following some Zainichi Koreans and the kind of hate that they get on a daily basis is really atrocious. Really it's like they're like dealing with the KKKs. Yet nobody does anything about it. Well, they should do something about it.

  • 2

    hidingout

    Your logic seems a bit warped. It's like a murderer who kills for a second time, with a 30 year gap since the first murder, using the defence that he/she killed for a second time because people kept reminding him that he/she had killed someone 30 year's ago. Wouldn't hold up in a court, me thinks.

    "Me thinks" its your logic that's a bit warped. Who exactly is the victim in your little murder analogy? See "murder" implies that one party is a criminal while the other party is an innocent. If you think that's the way the history of the communist chinese can be read then I suggest another round of the textbooks for you.

    davidnorell's comment was actually spot on - particularly the bit that explained how even pacifist leaning Japanese people are getting tired of being asked to apologize again and again for things that happened seventy, eighty years ago. Japan has been an excellent neighbor since the hostilities of WWII ended. One definitely couldn't say the same for the communist chinese.

  • -1

    soldave

    Thomas Anderson - The thing is there is no real incentive (in the minds of those in power) to doing anything. It's not directly affecting Japanese people so the answer is to just say it's bad and then look the other way.

  • 2

    Akemi Mokoto

    I've never liked nationalism. One of the reason I left America was due to their nationalism. Don't follow in Americas footsteps Japan. Nationalism is a dark road with a cliff at the end of it.

  • -1

    Yubaru

    Racism IS mainstream in Japan no matter how many idiots deny it.

    Racism against Chinese?

  • -3

    Thomas Anderson

    Japanese people are getting tired of being asked to apologize again and again for things that happened seventy

    That's because Japan never really apologized and continue to even deny that the war atrocities ever occurred. Get a clue. The rest of the world are furious at Japan for their lack of responsibility to confront their own history.

    Japan not knowing its own history harms Japan more than anybody else. Japanese people are not really aware of anything about their own country. Their own perception of their own country is very fragmented and fuzzy. Japanese people are often aware that their militant past did something horrible, but they don't quite know what it is - because they've never been properly taught about their own past. So they're afraid of militarizing. They're afraid that militarized Japan will go berserk again. They're afraid of themselves. The Japanese are skeptical and distrusting of themselves. But they don't quite know why. It's only because they've never really properly dealt with the past like the Germans have. So the only option that they have is, denial. And of course, to play the victim.

  • -1

    hidingout

    I've never liked nationalism. One of the reason I left America was due to their nationalism.

    This doesn't even make sense. You left one of the most culturally and ethnically diverse countries on the planet and came to a country that is 98% one race and expected there to be less nationalism and racism?

  • 4

    saidani

    Actually it was the "socialism" that allowed Japan to recover from WW2.

    No...Japan rose from the ashes by an all-hands-on-deck rebuilding effort, a perfect, yet, short-term situation in which it was beneficial. Socialism grew to its present size in the 90's with a massive increase in the welfare state and higher taxes. It's all been downhill from there.

    Koizumi didn't create income inequality (though he did nothing to change the trajectory of it). Incomes fell with a decline in economic growth, a predictable occurrence exacerbated by an increase in socialistic wealth redistribution which put further pressure on economic recovery and growth.

    it was conservatism and lack of will that caused the lost decades.

    Yeah...all of those welfare and tax increases, in addition to the ensuing debt, are the first signs of conservatism in any society. Japan has been a socialist nation run by an elitist class since the Meiji Restoration. Nationalism (in the Imperialistic sense) doesn't define conservatism except for those who wish to demagogue free will, personal responsibility, and less dependence on the socialist state government.

    The media act as the cheer leaders for the ultra-conservative LDP and the Restoration Party.

    The Japanese media are cheer-leaders for the government period. Bureaucrats run Japan, not political parties. Look at how the constant change in PMs since the asset bubble collapse has done nothing to change the declining trend in Japan. That's due to the increase in socialist policies, each of which give more power to the bureaucrats and less to the people. In that regard, Japan has become a model for America's government.

  • -3

    Thomas Anderson

    Thomas Anderson - The thing is there is no real incentive (in the minds of those in power) to doing anything. It's not directly affecting Japanese people so the answer is to just say it's bad and then look the other way.

    To be honest, not even the Japanese people themselves are protected by the law. Why are there so many problems with suicides, deaths over over-working and bullying, etc in this country? Because there are no laws there to protect them. Japan is a country without proper human rights.

  • 6

    Alphaape

    I've never liked nationalism. One of the reason I left America was due to their nationalism. Don't follow in Americas footsteps Japan. Nationalism is a dark road with a cliff at the end of it.

    I don't think that there is nothing really wrong about being nationalist about your own country, as long as you are not expousing hatred towards another country or group of people and not denying them their rights in your country. National pride in one's country is not a bad thing. If it were, why do we have the Olympics?

    What I find more telling about this story is the fact that the Park is still not seen as a Japanese, even though she is second generation here. In America, if you are born there, you are an American. You may be an ethnic American, but you are still viewed as an American. Here it seems, even though she was born here from parents who were born here, she is still seen as an outsider.

    Keep in mind, this attitude about ethnic Koreans has been around, well before this recent rise of "Nationalism" as this article states. So this problem (ethnic discrimination) has been around for a long time, and not just from the recent Nationalism movement.

  • 1

    hidingout

    That's because Japan never really apologized and continue to even deny that the war atrocities ever occurred. Get a clue. The rest of the world are furious at Japan for their lack of responsibility to confront their own history.

    I think you need to get a clue Thomas. The Japanese have issued apology after apology to communist china for their actions in WWII (1972, 1982, 1984, 1985, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1997, 2001 and on and on). None of these apologies has ever been quite good enough for the communist chinese however. To my knowledge Japan has also apologized to South Korea, Myanmar, Australia and the United States. Yet interestingly, when Barack Obama offered an apology ( in 2010) for the nuclear strikes on Hiroshima and Nagasaki it was seen as weakness by most Americans and the move was widely criticized in the media. My own personal feeling is that any more apologies (by anyone) for the events of WWII will be just so much wasted breath.

    As to the second part of your comment, why don't you make up a list of countries that are "furious" with Japan. It certainly doesn't include "the rest of the world" ..... more likely a list of two.

  • 7

    tkoind2

    Just wonderful. Exactly what Japan needs, a trip to the past. Let's rush out and recreate the political world of the 1930's shall we? All those wonderful strong people and their great nationalistic ideas. After all their generation of right wingers worked out so well for Japan. It gave the country and excuse to reduce the population and cut unemployment as a result. It allowed others to do the labor of tearing down everything in nearly every city so someone would have the opportunity to rebuild it and give jobs to the few remaining workers.

    Let's not forget all the wonderful uniforms everyone could wear. And all those exotic places you could see in the brief weeks before you died of disease or were killed by armies far outmatching your own military capacity.

    Yes folks, a strong turn to the nationalistic right is just what the grass eating boys and asexual youngsters of Japan need.

    If all of this isn't obvious to the Japanese, we can certainly set up a big projector in Shinjuku and Shibuya to remind everyone of how the right wing worked out for Japan the last time around. They are bunch of self important fools who would wreck the nation just to feather their own caps. But then again, who is the bigger fool? The fools leading or the fools that follow them.

  • 3

    tkoind2

    Just wonderful. Exactly what Japan needs, a trip to the past. Let's rush out and recreate the political world of the 1930's shall we? All those wonderful strong people and their great nationalistic ideas. After all their generation of right wingers worked out so well for Japan. It gave the country and excuse to reduce the population and cut unemployment as a result. It allowed others to do the labor of tearing down everything in nearly every city so someone would have the opportunity to rebuild it and give jobs to the few remaining workers.

    Let's not forget all the wonderful uniforms everyone could wear. And all those exotic places you could see in the brief weeks before you died of disease or were killed by armies far outmatching your own military capacity.

    Yes folks, a strong turn to the nationalistic right is just what the grass eating boys and asexual youngsters of Japan need.

    If all of this isn't obvious to the Japanese, we can certainly set up a big projector in Shinjuku and Shibuya to remind everyone of how the right wing worked out for Japan the last time around. They are bunch of self important fools who would wreck the nation just to feather their own caps.

  • -3

    Thomas Anderson

    hidingout, ask ANY COUNTRY in this world whether Japan did a good job dealing with their own history. NOT ONE (that is not bribed by Japan, no joke) will say that Japan has done a good job. Sure they may have done some things, like paid some money, but actually dealing with their own past? Most would give them an "F".

    The regular right-wing denial of Japanese world war atrocities is really atrocious. The author of the book "The Rape of Nanking", Iris Chang was harassed by the Japanese nationalist right-wingers and she eventually committed suicide. I think that the situation is really horrible and everyone, including the Japanese themselves should be infuriated.

  • -2

    Thomas Anderson

    As to the second part of your comment, why don't you make up a list of countries that are "furious" with Japan. It certainly doesn't include "the rest of the world" ..... more likely a list of two.

    This just goes to show how out of touch Japan is with the rest of the world. They think that it's only the Chinese and Koreans that are complaining. They are wrong. Not one country will say that Japan is doing a good job denying WW2 atrocities like the Nanking Massacre and Comfort Women. That's like the Germans denying that the Holocaust ever happened. It's just really horrible and the Japanese people need to get a clue. PEOPLE DO NOT LIKE IT WHEN THEY DENY THEIR OWN HISTORY, just because it's an inconvenient truth.

  • -5

    Thomas Anderson

    Someone who is really remorseful will not lash out at others and say "I've already apologized enough!!" - that truly shows that he was not sorry after all. He only "apologized" because there was some social pressure to do so. That's exactly what Japan is doing I think.

  • 0

    hidingout

    So that's a total backtrack from you on the two points I raised then eh?

    1. Japan has "never" apologized. Wrong. Japan has apologized again and again. This is a fact. Some may not have thought the apologies sufficiently grovelling in nature, but the apologies were tendered nonetheless. You can even find the exact words used if you know how to use google.

    2. The "rest of the world" is furious with Japan. Wrong. Only a handful of countries are "furious" with Japan over the events of WWII. Now you have changed your stance (in the two minutes it took me to reply) to " most countries would give Japan an F" - another laughable assertion. Here's a clue for you Thomas ..... most countries have long since moved past the events of WWII. Its only the communist chinese, and to a lesser extent the Koreans that can't get past it.

  • 3

    saidani

    PEOPLE DO NOT LIKE IT WHEN THEY DENY THEIR OWN HISTORY, just because it's an inconvenient truth.

    Yes, many in America feel the same way. I dare say that the US has more enemies around the world (of their own making) than Japan (excepting, of course, those nations which the US either bribes or threatens to keep in line). And, in fact, there is a growing sense that China is acting out on Japan in order to pressure the US which has become increasingly aggressive against Chinese allies in Iran and Syria. A rather unfortunate tit-for-tat for the Japanese.

  • 7

    paulinusa

    "City officials received a visit from two respectable-looking men proffering business cards and saying they were there to protest at the mounting of Park’s Korean dance."

    While I can't say anti-Korean feelings aren't on the rise or that it's not displayed on a more personal level, two "respectable" racists spouting ugly things isn't a very scientific survey of how the Japanese feel about Zainichi.

  • -2

    Thomas Anderson

    1. I never said that they "never" apologized. I'm saying that Japan only "apologize" when they're pressure enough by the world and do something here and there. But of course they're not really sincere about it so they get resentful when they are not pat on their backs for their "apologizing".

    2. Do you really think that the world will approve Japan of denying WW2 atrocities? Get a clue. How would you feel if the Americans denied that the atomic bombs were ever dropped or the Germans denied that the Holocaust ever happened?

  • 8

    Onniyama

    It seems to be that Noda is the only leader (and please remember to keep this in the perspective of Japanese politics) that is making any sense. I hope the Japanese voters see this and keep him in power. Not that I support the guy, but it is just the thought of the alternatives................................

  • 2

    BoredToTears

    Thomas Anderson, there is blatant racism in every country. What's you point?

  • 1

    gokai_wo_maneku

    Some people have nothing to show for their life, so they make what they do have the most important thing in the universe: I'm White, I'm Straight, I'm Japanese....

    Understand the Chinese strategy: Ishihara says something stupid; massive anti-Japanese riots; scared Japanese vote in strong rightists: rightises start military skermish with Chinese, then Chinese get to kill 10s of millions of Japanese, the "unfinished business" of WWII. Get ready for it!!!

  • 3

    Thomas Anderson

    Thomas Anderson, there is blatant racism in every country. What's you point?

    I'm saying that Japan should actually enforce more anti-discrimination and anti-racism laws. And people should oppose racism more rather than just stand by and watch.

  • 1

    saidani

    How would you feel if the Americans denied that the atomic bombs were ever dropped

    And, yet, the US continues to push the big lie about the necessity of those bombs. The decision was political as evidenced by the number of military men (Eisenhower, Leahy, MacArthur, among others) who either advised against it prior to the bombings or denounced them afterward.

  • 0

    sfjp330

    Thomas Anderson Dec. 07, 2012 - 08:53AM JST. This just goes to show how out of touch Japan is with the rest of the world. They think that it's only the Chinese and Koreans that are complaining. They are wrong. Not one country will say that Japan is doing a good job denying WW2 atrocities like the Nanking Massacre and Comfort Women.

    There are many issues that still remains today from WWII. However, if you look at the facts, Japan has made significant steps in trying to help the neighboring countries. Japan paid South Korea $500 million of compensation settlement in 1965 for WW2 issues. In 1978, an even larger deal was signed with China. Japan gave China $6 billion in ODA to build and moderize their infastructure. Average people in China does not know that Japan contributed this much money because the Chinese goverment censors these type of news.

  • 0

    Yubaru

    I'm saying that Japan should actually enforce more anti-discrimination and anti-racism laws. And people should oppose racism more rather than just stand by and watch.

    This article is about Korean's, and I for one can not understand how anyone with any amount of intelligence view the Japanese and Korean's or for the most part Chinese as well, as being of a different race.

    Discrimination? This is not about discrimination or racism either, it's purely extortion and nationalism raising it's ugly head.

  • -4

    hidingout

    The reason that Korea and China still get on Japan's back is that Japan has never openly stated its historical crimes, Japan has gone from ' Oh you were a victim, we were a victim too (Hiroshima and Nagasaki)' , to 'We never did anything wrong to you'.

    How do you hope to get away with this sort of inaccurate comment? Below please find the words used by various Japanese Prime Ministers and even the Emperor to apologize time and time again. I could have listed a dozen more just like these quotations - none of them sound anything like "we never did any wrong to you". Please try to make your point in good faith.


    August 26, 1982: Chief Cabinet Secretary Kiichi Miyazawa. "The Japanese Government and the Japanese people are deeply aware of the fact that acts by our country in the past caused tremendous suffering and damage to the peoples of Asian countries, including the Republic of Korea (ROK) and China, and (we) have followed the path of a pacifist state with remorse and determination that such acts must never be repeated

    September 7, 1984: Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone. "There was a period in this century when Japan brought to bear great sufferings upon your country and its people. I would like to state here that the government and people of Japan feel a deep regret for this."

    1989: Prime Minister Takeshita Noboru. "As we have made clear previously at repeated opportunities, the Japanese government and the Japanese people are deeply conscious of the fact that the actions of our country in the past caused suffering and loss to many people in neighboring countries. Starting from our regret and resolve not to repeat such things a second time, we have followed a course as a "Peace Nation" since then.

    May 24, 1990: Emperor Akihito. "Reflecting upon the suffering that your people underwent during this unfortunate period, which was brought about by our nation, I cannot but feel the deepest remorse"

    May 25, 1990: Prime Minister Toshiki Kaifu. "I would like to take the opportunity here to humbly reflect upon how the people of the Korean Peninsula went through unbearable pain and sorrow as a result of our country's actions during a certain period in the past and to express that we are sorry"

    January 17, 1992: Prime Minister Kiichi Miyazawa. "What we should not forget about relationship between our nation and your nation is a fact that there was a certain period in the thousands of years of our company when we were the victimizer and you were the victim. I would like to once again express a heartfelt remorse and apology for the unbearable suffering and sorrow that you experienced during this period because of our nation's acts."


    I know if I were the wronged party I would feel like an ass for demanding any further apology beyond what is contained in these quotes. Besides that, I have to question what good an apology does anyone anyway. Japan has demonstrated by her actions since the end of WWII that she is a good neighbor and a peace-loving nation. Actions speak louder than words.

  • -1

    Thomas Anderson

    There are many issues that still remains today from WWII. However, if you look at the facts, Japan has made significant steps in trying to help the neighboring countries. Japan paid South Korea $500 million of compensation settlement in 1965 for WW2 issues. In 1978, an even larger deal was signed with China. Japan gave China $6 billion in ODA to build and moderize their infastructure. Average people in China does not know that Japan contributed this much money because the Chinese goverment censors these type of news.

    Like I said, when Japan is pressured enough by the world, they do something here and there like pay them money. But that's not the point. They never really bothered to really deal with their own past and teach their own citizens proper history. And they continue to deny their atrocities for the most part. They often feel sorry for themselves, but they are never really sorry for what they did to everybody else, to the Dutch, the Philippines, the Koreans, the Chinese, etc, etc. In fact they never even apologize to their own citizens.

  • 1

    saidani

    Oh please... next you'll be coming out with Ishihara's claim that the bombs were only dropped on the japanese because they weren't white.

    Why don't you argue my point instead of expanding it into a reflection of your own ludicrous ideas. I said nothing about Ishihara or his claim. I was referring only to the comments from American military leaders which I named.

  • -2

    Thomas Anderson

    It's true that atomic bombings were horrible. It's true that the Japanese people suffered a lot. But what about the suffering caused by Japan to everybody else!! This kind of extremely self-centered thinking is really hard to understand. Unfortunately, it's the Japanese people themselves that allowed all of this to happen, and since they never learned from their own history, the history may very well repeat again with Abe and Ishihara-Hashimoto in power.

  • 1

    Yubaru

    How do you hope to get away with this sort of inaccurate comment? Below please find the words used by various Japanese Prime Ministers and even the Emperor to apologize time and time again. I could have listed a dozen more just like these quotations - none of them sound anything like "we never did any wrong to you". Please try to make your point in good faith.

    Words and actions are two VERY different things particularly when the actions of government officials defy logic.

    True, words have been spoken, but the lack of open discussion, education, and overall ignorance of their own past as an aggressor towards their neighbors makes the words seem hollow indeed.

  • 1

    tairitsuiken

    As far as the average Japanese go, I don't think nationalism will grow beyond control. As long as people have enough money to live comfortable lives, they are content and content people have no reason to stand up on the barricades with the nishoki and scream.

    That part of this society is very good.

    The not so good part is that content people have no reason to protest ideas brought forward by those with nationalistic tendencies. Instead, these people can roam freely without being questioned or challenged in the slightest.

    If Japan will continue be less wealthy and prosperous with more "poor" people (as I think it will) "nationalism" will probably grow. It is far easier to complain about problem you cannot solve(Senkaku/Takeshima) than to actually do something about your situation and for example start a new Mitsubishi or Toyota. And so, the easy targets will be the outsiders or the "unknown".

  • -1

    saidani

    It's true that atomic bombings were horrible. It's true that the Japanese people suffered a lot. But what about the suffering caused by Japan to everybody else!!

    So, the bombings were righteous retribution for Japan's acts? Just want to be clear.

    As for the Japanese people "allowing" this to happen and, thus, sharing the blame, it then makes sense that the American people are to blame for the wars in Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, Bosnia, Syria, etc., along with all of the criminal acts of American soldiers. To be sure, those who did not support Bush's wars would not accept that (even though they are more than willing to accept Obama's wars) Pre-war Japanese were just as indoctrinated and manipulated as pre-war and post-war Americans about war.

  • -6

    Thomas Anderson

    I'm saying that they should stop feeling so sorry for themselves when they feel sorry for no one else.

  • 1

    yabits

    And people should oppose racism more rather than just stand by and watch.

    This is a key point, as it reinforces the perception that the kind of discrimination leveled towards Ms. Park and her attempt to present Korean culture is acceptable to the Japanese public -- making appear more systemic in nature, rather than an isolated example of "extortion."

    The not so good part is that content people have no reason to protest ideas brought forward by those with nationalistic tendencies. Instead, these people can roam freely without being questioned or challenged in the slightest.

    I totally agree. This is the part that people must take action on. When the will to act on the part of citizens in the face of a clear wrong is atrophied, they become like sheep and can be led anywhere.

  • 0

    Disillusioned

    This kind of (ultranationalist) atmosphere or mood is emerging… and it’s possible that tough talks could captivate the public

    In a strange kind of way, I feel the Japanese are blaming other countries for their economic downfall instead of putting the blame onto their revolving door politics and complete lack of any real leadership. The door is set to revolve again in the next two weeks.

    Saidani - So, the bombings were righteous retribution for Japan's acts?

    No they weren't! They were the only way to stop the millions of Japanese troops sweeping across Asia and trying to take over the world. Check your history before making such ridiculous statements.

  • 1

    saidani

    Check your history before making such ridiculous statements.

    Check yours, although you should stay away from American education's history books. They are a lot like the Japanese history books that so many people complain don't really teach the truth.

  • 1

    hidingout

    This just goes to show how out of touch Japan is with the rest of the world. They think that it's only the Chinese and Koreans that are complaining.

    Again I ask you to provide a list of the countries included in your version of "the rest of the world". And some evidence to support your claim that these countries are "furious".

    I never said that they "never" apologized.

    Yes you did.

    And they continue to deny their atrocities for the most part.

    No they don't .... unless you think a tiny fraction of rightists speak for the entire country - which of course would be akin to saying that neo-nazi skinheads speak for all of the Germans.

    But what about the suffering caused by Japan to everybody else!!

    More hyperbole and gross exaggeration. Who is "everybody else" Thomas. Your posts on this topic are full of historical inaccuracies and unthinking generalizations. Clearly it is a waste of time to engage you on this topic.

  • -2

    saidani

    I'm not American.

    Then it has been effective beyond American borders. Still, it doesn't make the "official" history correct.

  • -2

    tairitsuiken

    @hidingout

    The only thing all your copying/pasting proves is this: Not once is the word "apologize" seen. A lot of words but if one reads between the lines, it is obvious that this is the official stance of non-apology.

  • 0

    saidani

    It's just sad we're about to see the grandchildren of those ministers who worked in that rabid sadistic regime take the reins of power in Japan again.

    You can thank the Allied occupation forces for allowing those families to stay in power instead of prosecuting them.

  • 1

    hidingout

    Because the whole underlieing (sic) notion within Japan is that the apologies were made because Japan was forced to them for the sake of international 'Wa' and not because they were true.

    Your interpretation. Not to be confused with the facts. What say you about the direct quote apologies that I posted? Not good enough? Still say that the Japanese stance is "we did nothing wrong to you"? Honestly you sound like you've been reading too many communist chinese textbooks.

  • 0

    hidingout

    True, words have been spoken, but the lack of open discussion, education, and overall ignorance of their own past as an aggressor towards their neighbors makes the words seem hollow indeed.

    An apology is defined as a admission of culpability and the stated intention to refrain from repeating the behavior. By any logic **all **of the statements I posted above qualify as apologies. To suggest that they were insincere and/or "forced" is simply an opinion that has no basis in fact.

    Furthermore, what happens after the apology is up to the victim as much as it is the perpetrator. Can you honestly say that the communist chinese have taken the right steps with regard to the "open discussion, education and overall ignorance" you mention above?

  • 3

    Yubaru

    No they don't .... unless you think a tiny fraction of rightists speak for the entire country - which of course would be akin to saying that neo-nazi skinheads speak for all of the Germans.

    Semantics, semantics, semantics.........not denying? Certainly not acknowledging either if YOU take a look at the education that people have gotten and are getting today in repainting the past.

    You can play with words all you want but it's a FACT that the average Japanese person today has no real idea or knowledge of their own part in WWII and truly believe in the whitewashed version of their being a "victim" and not an aggressor.

  • 6

    Jimizo

    Japan is a ripe furrow for nationalism, very similar in many ways to South Korea and China. As Dog pointed out, the cultural similarities run much deeper than Japanese people are either taught or care to acknowledge. Myths of racial purity and pseudo-scientific/academic nationalism such as Nihonjinron is still used, even by politicians, to cultivate a sense of uniqueness - not too dissimilar to South Korea and China ( the latter goes as far using pseudo-science to prove that the Han 'race' cannot trace its ancestry to Africa ). This garbage is toxic, and can be used to help demonize the other.

  • -4

    Thomas Anderson

    hidingout, I've heard enough of the same BS from the right-wingers already. I hope that you are not one of them.

  • 1

    morrison_rm

    //Footage posted on the Internet

    URL please...

  • -3

    Thomas Anderson

    Jimizo

    Myths of racial purity and pseudo-scientific/academic nationalism such as Nihonjinron is still used, even by politicians, to cultivate a sense of uniqueness - not too dissimilar to South Korea and China ( the latter goes as far using pseudo-science to prove that the Han 'race' cannot trace its ancestry to Africa ). This garbage is toxic, and can be used to help demonize the other.

    It's the direct result of the Sinocentrism. It's ironic because the Chinese have been using this exact same technique for generations to control their regions and their surrounding countries like Korea and Japan.

  • -9

    YuriOtani

    She let two men force her to cancel the dance? There are always a few nuts in every town. She should not judge the entire nation from a few crazy people. Of course it is just her word against a pair of no named people. This could all be a set up to whine. The article is more Japan bashing as usual.

  • 0

    Thomas Anderson

    She let two men force her to cancel the dance? There are always a few nuts in every town. She should not judge the entire nation from a few crazy people. Of course it is just her word against a pair of no named people. This could all be a set up to whine. The article is more Japan bashing as usual.

    Oh please, "Japan bashing"? More usual playing the victim when there are crazies in Japan and nobody does anything about it. Like the children should suffer PTSD from these right-wing crazies.

  • 0

    Thomas Anderson

    Oh yeah, and how can it be "Japan bashing" when the article was written by a Japanese? Japanese never fail to cry "Japan bashing" whenever they are criticized and made themselves seen in a bad light. Toyota getting criticized? It must be Japan bashing!!! It's a conspiracy!! Oh brother... It's interesting that they only whine about "Japan bashing" whenever they're perceived to be criticized by the "outsiders". I guess they're only trying to save face.

  • 1

    Outta here

    Yuri,

    You say the article is more Japan bashing as usual. What a load of garbage. The article is merely stating the facts as they are in Japan right at this moment. Facts which believe it or not the rest of the world are watching with some apprehension. Especially given your not so distant history of behaviour.

  • 1

    Outta here

    Thomas,

    Completely agree with your statement. Whenever anything is said about Japan its classified Japan bashing. Yet Japan is free to say and do whatever they like to another nation but look out if anything is said in response because that becomes Japan bashing. Japan behaves like a spoilt little 5 yo brat who wants everything their own way. And the best way to stop that sort of behaviour!!! A good clip under the ears. I for one am sick to death of hearing about OH POOR JAPAN!!! The poor little picked on routine is really wearing thin people...

  • 3

    hidingout

    The only thing all your copying/pasting proves is this: Not once is the word "apologize" seen. A lot of words but if one reads between the lines, it is obvious that this is the official stance of non-apology.

    Copy/pasting historically verifiable quotes is better than just making stuff up like "Japan never apologized" , "they didn't really mean it" , "all the world is furious" , "its all down to wa" etc.

    May 25, 1990: Prime Minister Toshiki Kaifu. "I would like to take the opportunity here to humbly reflect upon how the people of the Korean Peninsula went through unbearable pain and sorrow as a result of our country's actions during a certain period in the past and to express that we are sorry."

    I see the word "sorry" printed right there. Are you telling me that an apology has to specifically contain a certain word in order for it to be acceptable?

    the translations that you've posted are a lot more direct than the actual Japanese wording. Even with the translator's directness, they still sound like evasive regrets about non-specifics.

    Laughable. First you said "we never did anything wrong to you". Then when shown how you were wrong with that statement you progressed to "the apologies were forced and insincere". When it is pointed out that you would have no way to ascertain that to be true you move on to airy fairy talk about "wa". And now its down to "improper translation". Face it. Japan has done all the apologizing that should ever be required of them. I would go so far as to say that no other sovereign nation on earth has apologized as often as the Japanese have.

    I feel sorry for the communist chinese (and to a lesser extent the Koreans) for languishing in victim mode for going on a hundred years. And I find it completely understandable that many people in Japan are turning to nationalist leaders after so many years of having their apologies spit on.

  • 6

    yabits

    Of course it is just her word against a pair of no named people.

    You actually think Ms. Park is making all this up?

    Shame on you.

  • 0

    alliswellinjapan

    The irony here is that the more the rising trend of nationalism is suggested as with this article the more centrist or leftist people will lean towards the LDP as the last thing these people would want is for Ishihara to gain enough power for the LDP to come out weak in need of Ishin's participation in government. What we are recently seeing is LDP gaining higher support while Ishin seemingly in loss of momentum.

  • -1

    Seiryuu_Dan

    Now, with all the things going between the Three nations, I could understand why they are not liking Koreans or Chinese now, but @ a peaceful Korean cultural event?

    Understandable if it was against Korean protester group, but not there. Then they are as bad as those Chinese Rioters, or those out-of-control Korean protesters who sacifice unnecessary animal lives and those who cut themselves.

    I support the revision of the Constitution and improving the capabilities of the military, The safety and security of Japan and Japanese people are important. it will also help the Japanese Defense industries and boost Japanese confidence.

    I also hate the way China and the Two Koreas plays that victim cards.

    But agree that this nationalism is bringing out some extreme rightist that could harm Japan's international image and relations.

    At this moment, Noda and the DPJ is a disappointment. If LDP does indeed win, hope that most of their talks are just talks, but that they can improve the economy, among other things.
    They may be the cause of today's problems, but after being oust for 3 years, maybe they'll do better a 2nd time.

  • 0

    fds

    just because the japanese have become more nationalistic does not mean a return to the pre-WWII militaristic mentality. one of the reasons japanese can't understand why the have to apologize is that they did not actually do anything in WWII and since WWII have done their part to improve the condition of world. japan is one of the top providers of foreign aid in the world and in fact a lot went to making china. do they appreciate it? the murder anology is like saying you should be responsible for the murder committed by your father 50 years ago.

  • -1

    Hiroicci

    According to a survey by Mainichi Shinbun, however, those "national front" parties (Ishihara's and Hashimoto's) are faring badly. Only the LDP is doing well.

    Isn't this logic depressing: The DPJ was ineffective and amateurish and the nationalist parties seem to be dangerous, so I'll vote for the LDP! Mr Stomachache will think that he's been redeemed and trusted by the voters next Monday...

  • -1

    Ivan Coughanoffalot

    Does anybody have a link to this alleged incident? The article states there is footage available.

  • 0

    blendover

    I agree that expecting national repentance from the people of Japan for the crimes of 70 years ago (the sins of the grandfather or great grandfather) is unrealistic and in all probabllity would be counterproductive if undertaken. It should be pointed out that Germany today has huge problems with right wing ultra nationalist youth, and this has not a little to do with the kind of national shame education that is still prevalent in Germany today.

    The British committed all kinds of horrors during their period of colonial expansion. Nobody writes textbooks for schools these days expecting the British teenager to feel personally responsible for events that took place long before they were born - and quite rightly too. Having said that, I do think that historical obscufation is regrettable and that a more accurate, but low key presentation of the facts in school would be desirable.

  • -6

    YuriOtani

    Oh blew it the 2 men went to city officials. Still 2 fruits causing so much trouble. These 2 men are being used to bash all Japanese. People are so quick to think bad about Japanese. My thoughts is why the policemen did not intervene the nuts and or bring them to the station? The police need to investigate this and round up the threatening group.

  • -4

    Disillusioned

    saidani - Then it has been effective beyond American borders. Still, it doesn't make the "official" history correct.

    Official history? I'm sure the people of Singapore, South Korea, South/East China, Taiwan and the rest of south/east Asia would be very interested to know what your version of 'official history' is. The fact is, The American and allied forces were provoked into to war by the Japanese and were only reacting in defence. Perhaps you recall a little place called, Pearl Harbor? Or, how about 'the Kakoda Trail in Papua New Guinea? Just to name a few. You cannot damn the actions of the American and allied forces. If it were not for the millions of men and women that lost their lives during the WW2 'defensive' you would be speaking Japanese now, or possibly even German.

  • 0

    yabits

    My thoughts is why the policemen did not intervene the nuts and or bring them to the station? The police need to investigate this and round up the threatening group.

    Well, that's where the plot starts to thicken, doesn't it?

    And what of the public that is now exposed to the truth of the threats made and the police (seemingly) taking no action about it? Will they sit by and remain just as passive in the face of this as the police seemingly are?

  • -5

    Thomas Anderson

    Oh blew it the 2 men went to city officials. Still 2 fruits causing so much trouble. These 2 men are being used to bash all Japanese. People are so quick to think bad about Japanese. My thoughts is why the policemen did not intervene the nuts and or bring them to the station? The police need to investigate this and round up the threatening group.

    This kind of attitude is exactly why people are engaging in "Japan bashing". Maybe people are "Japan bashing" because the police never does anything and the Japanese people are apathetic as usual, and blame the victim.

  • -1

    globalwatcher

    saidaniDec. 07, 2012 - 09:50AM JST

    Check your history before making such ridiculous statements.

    Check yours, although you should stay away from American education's history books. They are a lot like the Japanese history books that so many people complain don't really teach the truth.

    What are you bubbing about? US education is not teaching the truth?

    Are Japanrese teaching racism, discrimination, nationalism, a whole story of WW2? Japanese history teachers do not teach these issues, I know that as a fact. These issues have to be taught from the top down to avoid something like this to happen. Japanese are homogenious and true racists under their skins.

  • -1

    YuriOtani

    Coughs millions or allies did not die in the Pacific war. True million of Chinese did though they killed millions of their own. Disillusioned what about the 150,000 Okinawa people who were killed? How about the hundreds of thousands, millions of Japanese killed in US air raids? Perhaps 10 percent of the Japanese population died in the militants wars.

    yabits about the police they are lazy and did not want to get involved.

  • -1

    saidani

    Disillusioned Dec. 07, 2012 - 11:00AM JST

    I do not dispute the savagery against other nations by the Japanese or, for that matter, the Americans. However, there has been much written about the machinations of FDR against Japan in order to provoke the attack on Pearl Harbor which should be open for debate because, if true (and all reason would indicate that it is) the destruction caused to Asia lays at the doorstep of both Japan and the US which fought a war that probably did not need to be fought except as a means to further American interests. Of course, since this is not the "official" American account of those times and since the Americans won the war, to be sure many will disregard anything that challenges their beliefs. To the victors belong the spoils and the ability to fashion the history for their benefit.

  • 2

    yabits

    I have neglected to praise the Japanese writer and press for bringing this article to the attention of the public.

    Secondly, all the talk about WWII, China, Singapore, bombs, etc. -- is irrelevant. A woman simply and legally applied to hold a cultural event to "showcase" her heritage and, shockingly, had to cancel the event in the face of threats received by a town official.

    Threats against public safety have no place whatsoever in any society.

  • -1

    ka_chan

    Wow, reading this makes me think that Japan has once again fallen into a state of deep nationalism. Wonder if we will start to see some "accidents" happen to the opposition. I suppose a country of 100 million can win a war against a country of 1.3 trillion. Makes sense to me.

  • -4

    Thomas Anderson

    global almost all stories on Japan Today degenerate to Japan bashing. The other countries have their own problems. I watch TV racism is alive and well in the USA, UK, Europe, Korea and China. A synagogue was attacked not far from me recently. Black Churches are burning and one case causes foreigners to call all Japanese racists. Take a look at the world around you.

    Yuri, the only person who is complaining about Japan bashing written by this Japanese author is you.

  • 3

    saidani

    US education is not teaching the truth?

    Well, it isn't if teaches that Japan attacked Pearl Harbor without anyone in the FDR administration expecting it or that it was absolutely necessary to drop two atomic bombs on Japanese city as the only means to stop the war without costing the lives of millions of American soldiers, then it probably is not teaching the complete truth.

    As for Japanese education, it is fashioned, like the American education system, after the Prussian model which was designed to indoctrinate children to be good soldiers and compliant workers who respect the authority of the government. So, yes, Japanese schools teach a lot of things that benefit the government instead of the children, just like the American education system.

  • -2

    saidani

    Yuri, the only person who is complaining about Japan bashing written by this Japanese author is you.

    The article is not Japan bashing but it sure does add fuel to those who insist on bashing Japan on this site. Of course, this incident is hardly indicative of the feelings of the majority of Japanese, except to those who like to bash Japan. It's not that complicated really.

  • -1

    globalwatcher

    saidaniDec. 07, 2012 - 11:33AM JST

    Disillusioned Dec. 07, 2012 - 11:00AM JST

    I do not dispute the savagery against other nations by the Japanese or, for that matter, the Americans. However, there has been much written about the machinations of FDR against Japan in order to provoke the attack on Pearl Harbor which should be open for debate because, if true (and all reason would indicate that it is) the destruction caused to Asia lays at the doorstep of both Japan and the US which fought a war that probably did not need to be fought except as a means to further American interests. Of course, since this is not the "official" American account of those times and since the Americans won the war, to be sure many will disregard anything that challenges their beliefs. To the victors belong the spoils and the ability to fashion the history for their benefit.

    True. Everyone has thier own story to tell. Every divorce case has two side. Every war has two sides.

    The point is that we have to learn from mistakes. And we are not allowed to make same mistakes over and over again. People do not understand what is right, what is wrong if the moral value is not properly addressed and taught in school.. Discrimination is wrong, racism is wrong, nationalism is wrong. There is a difference between nationalism to patriotism. US education is really focusing on this as we are a nation of immigrants. We all need to learn to get along. I just want to insert this to correct your distorted view on US education.

  • 2

    GW

    Hidingout,

    What to say, all those "apologies" as others have CORRECTLY pointed out they are simply insincere vaguely worded crap with little to no meaning, especially when Japans political world is filled with the grand children of war criminals & MANY who openly deny atrocities & believe Japan did little to no wrong.

    Oh please point out which of these "apologies" were OFFICIAL, as in made official in the Diet.................

  • 1

    GW

    Coughs millions or allies did not die in the Pacific war. True million of Chinese did though they killed millions of their own. Disillusioned what about the 150,000 Okinawa people who were killed? How about the hundreds of thousands, millions of Japanese killed in US air raids? Perhaps 10 percent of the Japanese population died in the militants wars

    Yuri,

    Are you aware that Japan killed between 20-30million in WWII? Japan lost between 3-4million.

    Its well known what happened in Okinawa as well as the mainland, but many Japanese dont know much about what Japan did other than some unfortunate incidents & some suffering........ the amazing thing is many Japanese seem quite familiar with what Nazi Germany did(their own allie) but know little of what imperial Japan did...........go figure

  • 0

    saidani

    I just want to insert this to correct your distorted view on US education.

    I don't know, since you are probably a product of the American education system, you probably don't know if my views are distorted or not. Whereas I am willing to admit the failures of the Japanese system, you don't seem willing to admit that the American system is equally defective. Which view is probably closer to the truth?

    • Moderator

      All readers, please stop bickering. Focus your comments on what is in the story and not at each other.

  • -4

    saidani

    It's called sarcasm...

    Yes...so was my comment.

  • 0

    tkoind2

    "I don't think nationalism will grow beyond control. As long as people have enough money to live comfortable lives..."

    But that is the problem, people may not have enough for very much longer. 17% poverty already, 4.something% reported unemployment does not account for both real unemployment and underemployment. Loss of high paying jobs, rises in crime, anxieties about the international political arena and fear of the future.

    You don't need a depression to see fascism rise in a country. It only takes anxiety and engough obvious discomfort to worry the working classes into following someone they perceive as strong.

    History tells us again and again that very little can be required to send humanity off the common sense cliff into mass hysteria.

  • -5

    hidingout

    What to say, all those "apologies" as others have CORRECTLY pointed out they are simply insincere vaguely worded crap with little to no meaning,

    That's your take. I guess words like regret and remorse and responsibility and sorry are too vague for you. Too bad. From where I'm sitting those folks claiming Japan has never apologized or was insincere have been proven wrong to the extent that their warped view of what constitutes an apology can safely be ignored.

    especially when Japans political world is filled with the grand children of war criminals & MANY who openly deny atrocities & believe Japan did little to no wrong.

    More opinion framed as fact by using caps. The burden is on you to prove your outrageous claims. Crickets I expect.

    Oh please point out which of these "apologies" were OFFICIAL, as in made official in the Diet.

    April 18, 1990: Minister of Foreign Affairs Taro Nakayama. "Japan is deeply sorry" - 118th National Diet Session

    August 23, 1993: Prime Minister Morihiro Hosokawa "Firstly at this occasion, we would like to express our deep remorse and apology for the fact that invasion and colonial rule by our nation in the past brought to bear great sufferings and sorrow upon many people" - 127th National Diet Session

    September 24, 1993: Prime Minister Morihiro Hosokawa. "I used the expression war of aggression and act of aggression to express honestly my recognition which is the same as the one that the act of our nation in the past brought to bear unbearable sufferings and sorrow upon many people, and to express once again deep remorse and apology" - 128th National Diet Session

    There's three for you - all from National Diet sessions. I would hasten to add that it is rather odd that you would consider only apologies issued on the floor of the Diet to be legitimate. Mostly a person should apologize directly to the wronged party and many many of the apologies have been made directly to the various leaders of ROK and communist china. Personally I would consider those to be the end of the matter.

    But no .... I expect you will come back with some other flimsy excuse as to why these words aren't good enough. Any sane person could see by now that there are no words, no apologies, no amount of money that will ever satisfy the communist chinese.

  • -2

    YuriOtani

    GW at leat 7 million Japanese died in WWII and the expansionists wars. China is a special case since even as China was invaded the communists and nationalists were fighting each other. Imperial Japan did unspeakable things and ordinary people died for their sins. What puzzles me is how people write about how Japan should get rid of article #9 and the herbivore men. A single incident happens and then all Japanese become fascists.

  • -2

    Redcliff

    @ Saidani,\ @ Thomas @outta here

    Good and logical comments.

  • 2

    tkoind2

    YuriOtani.

    The Allies did not initate the war, Japan did. The real people who caused millions to starve were those who elected to take Japan to war in the first place. A war that some of Japan's highest ranking people knew they could not win from day one. Anyone looking at US and UK production and population capacity vs. Japan would see the outcome written in stone before the first shot was fired. But the right knowingly elected to proceed and knowingly elected to sacrifice the people of Japan and the victims of her aggression.

    If you asked a Japanese leader to choose between killing his own people or the enemy who do you think they would elect to kill? The same is true of any nation faced with war and the decision to send its young people into harms way.

    Blame for everything that took place in the 1930's and 1940's to Japan rests solely with those who elected war as a solution. Once war begins all sides become monsters. The lesson you and I need to learn from this is to prevent the start of war at all costs. Now and forever. Which is why nationalists cannot be allowed to run Japan in the future.

  • 3

    Alphaape

    It's just sad we're about to see the grandchildren of those ministers who worked in that rabid sadistic regime take the reins of power in Japan again.

    This is the major reason why Japan is "moving slow in the fast lane" sometimes. Why is it that only those so called "grandchildren" of the former ministers are the ones that get elected. Time and time again, I see here in Japan that those who get elected are people from political families. I know some get elected and appointed who don't have that pedigree, but it seems that to be a real power broker, you must come from one of a certain group of families. And that is where Japan falls on its face many times.

    Whether they were from a zaibatsu family or just some recently elected polictal family, trying to maintain a government with basically the same types of people who are going to do the same things in a rapidly changing world will keep you lagging behind. If Japan wants to become stronger militarily then go ahead. But don't make the mistake of electing into office people who's only skills for the job were that they came from a certain family who held a similar position before. You only will keep getting the same old tired tactics and no new thinking that will keep putting Japan further and further behind.

  • 1

    Sentiments

    Who killed who and how many 70-80 years ago is a perfectly non-constructive issue. The same goes for the opinions about apologizing or not. Some of you seem to believe there is a universal language for stating remorse. Japan has a different culture from China and Korea, thus they apologized in their own manner. If the receiver are so psychologically blocked so they cannot meet the opponent expression and accept the apology it is all a waist of time and Japan should stop humiliating themselves. The modern issues/problems in China and Korea are domestic. There governments need to address them as such and help their citizens to get over their traumas. I guess the governments in China and Korea avoid helping their own citizens because they can use the anti-japan feelings for political games. It is these political games that is fueling the japanese right wing.

  • 2

    saidani

    Why is it that only those so called "grandchildren" of the former ministers are the ones that get elected.

    Because the Allied occupation forces decided to keep the "grandfathers" in power after the war both because they had the administrative experience and because they were then obligated to the Americans for saving their lives, fortunes, and status. And they became good puppets for the Americans for which they continued to be rewarded. The recovery from war cemented these families as rightful leaders in the eyes of the Japanese people for generations. But it all began during the occupation as the Americans rebuilt the bureaucracy and political parties to facilitate their own interests.

  • 1

    BernieK

    Ya'll have to remember nationalism is a collective belief. There are nationalists who anger resident foreigners, but also anger homosexuals, women past child-bearing age, China and Korea too. So why all now? Because when Ishihara ran and won his third term as Tokyo Governor in 2007 he attracted support from about 40 percent of the capital's non-affiliated voters who shun ties with any political party. It's worked before so why not again for the Japan Restoration Ass.

  • -3

    David3

    ****Yuri Otane's remark about Article 9. Few people outside of Japan (and not everyone in Japan) knows about Article 9. What may be of interest to all readers is that there is a movement in the U.S. to bring a version of Article 9 as an amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The Women's International League for Peace and Freedom is now collaborating with an American filmmaker to make this a reality. WWII is over, but should never be forgotten, in fact should be learned in great detail - but more importantly people from all nations and cultures should realize that we are all living in the nuclear age. Our survival is at stake. The future of all generations demands that we deal with war making in the nuclear age as the greatest threat to our survival. Article 9 is a proven document in action. Japan has lived in peace for 67 years because of Article 9. She has not attacked another nation, no soldiers or civilians have been lost to war. With Article 9 in the U.S. Constitution both Japan and the U.S. have a golden opportunity to form an international coalition to support the United Nations in abolishing war making as a political/economic tool. The end of war making is in sight!

  • 3

    saidani

    The end of war making is in sight!

    Dream on. As long as there is money to be made by making war, it will continue. And while you cite a desire by a fringe group to create an Article 9 for the US, the US government continues to try to get Japan to rescind Article 9 in order for Japan to help the US make war around the world. Weapons sales are at high level and the US is a leading supplier of these weapons systems. Those defense contractors will probably not fund their own demise by donating to politicians who will vote against war thus allowing the US government to be taken over by a bunch of peaceniks.

  • 1

    jumpultimatestars

    once the older generations die out perhaps this asinine hatred will subside.

  • 0

    Sensato

    City officials received a visit from two respectable-looking men proffering business cards and saying they were there to protest at the mounting of Park’s Korean dance. Footage posted on the Internet shows the mask of civility soon slipping, as the men let out a volley of racist abuse at a city official.

    I think this part of the article is referring to the Osu Korean Dance Festival that was to have been held in the Osu (大須) district of Nagoya. A number of YouTube videos show citizens protesting against the festival. Here is one of those videos (apparently posted by the Zaitokukai): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HhxhweAg3L4

    I think this is the video the author of this article was referring to when referring to two "respectable-looking men" visiting city officials (2nd of 3 parts). In this video, the two men are asking the city official to call off the festival. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RBpwFkunKDg

    Judging from the content the many videos shot in Osu, it looks like ethnic tensions are heating up in the area.

  • -2

    basroil

    Takeshi Nakajima, associate professor of politics at Hokkaido University, says a mood of “neo-liberalism” is rising in Japan, which is not dissimilar to the Tea Party movement in the U.S.

    Well, the tea party never had state sanctioned racism and xenophobia. The Japanese constitution has no protections for non-Japanese citizens, and the courts have upheld racist laws and businesses as being not only constitutional, but actually "good" for the country. If ultranationalists have their way, the only people to come on top are those who have nothing to do with the country.

  • 2

    David3

    ****Totally agree saidani. War making is a money making proposition. Yet Article 9 is a proven document in action. No need to re-invent the wheel. The U.S. told Japan to drop Article 9 in 1950 and go to war against North Korea. To their credit, the Japanese government refused and grew to become an economic giant - without going to war. The Japanese government has been in collusion with the U.S. to rescind Article 9, as you say, but the citizenry won't let it happen. They realize the power of Article 9. Today there are 7,000 chapters of Article 9 in Japan. Even while there is a continuous build up of the home defense force and a break down of the three non-nuclear principles and the secret security pact with the U.S. (no longer secret), the people support Article 9. It's not a dream. It's a living reality. There's the hope. Since 9/11 all the American weapons of mass destruction have been rendered meaningless. America has been exposed as a paper tiger, albeit a dangerous one. When the economic bubble burst in 2008, ghosts began coming out of the closet. America is ripe for Article 9. It'll be a long haul, but, hey what's the alternative living in the nuclear age?

  • -1

    saidani

    David3 Dec. 07, 2012 - 04:06PM JST

    Yes. Don't get me wrong on this. War is a foolish enterprise and it is hoped that Japan will never capitulate to the US and rescind Article 9. Sadly, I hold little hope in that regard.

  • -1

    yokatta

    Gambate Noda chan!

  • 1

    ikemen

    Japan has apologized several times as Hidingout mentioned. The problem is that at the same time other politicians make statements that negate the apologies in the eyes of other countries.

    Korea and China, and other countries need to just deal with the fact that Japan is not going to make a yearly apology and reprimand other officials for making inflammatory statements. It's just not going to happen.

    Yuri is right in saying that two men stopping a dance doesn't mean all Japanese are hating on Koreans in Japan. it would be nice if a few citizens in the area went to the city office and requested that the opposers be ignored and the festival go ahead.

    We've got to start getting on with each other.

    I don't see any good thinking coming out of antagonism on the lowest level, or war in the worst case scenario.

    Japanese will always feel superior to Koreans and Chinese though. I can't see that changing in a hurry.

    But, why not try to be polite, get on with each other, and most importantly, fix the tunnels, pension problems, nuclear plants and earthquake readiness etc etc etc.

  • 3

    tkoind2

    Does the phrase "the war to end all wars" sound familiar? Over all of human history there have been moments where a movement was thought to assure an end to war. The League of Nations, the UN etc... are examples as well.

    The sad reality is that war is a biproduct of money economies. Whether they are capitalism, feudalism or imperialism, war is inevitable within economic structures that are based upon competition.

    If you want war to go away, you need to change the very nature of human civilization. Eliminate the economic motivations for war. Eliminate the racial and religious motivations for war. And eliminate the political motivations of power that lead to war.

    But the sad reality appears to suggest that eliminating these things would require the extermination of all humanity as it is a dark part of the human mind that would be very hard to divorce ourselves from.

  • 2

    Yubaru

    Does the phrase "the war to end all wars" sound familiar?

    Typically speaking, seeing as how this Japan, no it would not sound familiar. Folks here have a rather bad tendency to try to use "western" ideal's to tackle an Asian problem. Sadly there are too few westerners that don't understand the culture and history in this region. Causes all sorts of misunderstandings and problems.

  • 0

    YuriOtani

    tkoind2 the Japan of the 30's and the Japan of today are very different. I support article #9 and think it should remain in force. Japan should NEVER resort to aggressive force. However whenever a country disagrees with Japan they bring out our past. People keep saying all of our dead is the price of aggression but that same line of thinking can be used against them. What will happen if America loses a conflict? Will the same justifications be used to kill millions of Americans?

    To be clear I reject Imperial Japan and the neo bushido that resulted in so many people dying. It was the result of paranoia and t be fair a counter to western imperialism. We must remember it is about people not countries or races. If we think about people as people war would be much more difficult.

  • -1

    Seiharinokaze

    Abe says that he will keep the tri-party agreement for the sales tax hike but that he won't raise the sales tax as long as deflation continues. And the outlook on the world economy is still bleak which won't help Japan's nominal GDP grow anytime soon either. Also he says that Japan should not join TPP if it allows no exceptions. Practically speaking, how is he different from Ozawa? When in office five years ago, the first place Abe chose to visit as premier was not Washington but Beijing. He deferred visiting the US for six months even though he was rapped for the delay (being a rare premier who did not visit Washington soon after inauguration). He said it's not as if he was a daimyo who had to attend Edo every other year in Tokugawa period. ("Sankin-kotai ja arumaishi.") And the relation with Beijing during his leadership was somehow calm. The East China Sea will be turbulent anyway but he seems to be in the cold light remembering how his grand father and Chiang Kaishek hugged each other after WW2 feeling vexed with George Marshall for giving away the weapons of the Japanese army to Mao Tsetung.

  • -1

    Thomas Anderson

    People shouldn't be so paranoid about Article 9... it's very unlikely that the Japanese soldiers would suddenly go out of control like they did during the WW.

  • -1

    Hiroto7777

    Koreans and Chinese need to leave Japan alone. If you do not like or respect Japanese culture, better they leave.

  • -1

    Tiger_In_The_Hermitage

    Nationalism / Patriotism is the excuse of the vicious!

  • -2

    Thomas Anderson

    Koreans and Chinese need to leave Japan alone. If you do not like or respect Japanese culture, better they leave.

    They never disrespected Japanese culture, however the Japanese seem to be disrespecting the Korean and Chinese culture.

  • -1

    Thomas Anderson

    The Japanese constitution has no protections for non-Japanese citizens, and the courts have upheld racist laws and businesses as being not only constitutional, but actually "good" for the country.

    Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination was finally ratified by Japan in 1995... so in theory, all forms of racial discrimination are unconstitutional.

  • 1

    Mike Bird

    So what is japanese Culture? Well you wouldn't have thought Japan was once a place with 13 different waring tribes of people would you? Every Japanese has a different ancestry. Plus Japan and Korea actually have a lot of shared ancient history. Yet in what other developed country would I get a class of school children yelling 'Gaijin' and pointing at me as I walked down the street? There are nationalists in the UK, but even they won't mind if a Frenchman organised a dance?????

  • -2

    globalwatcher

    saidaniDec. 07, 2012 - 04:20PM JST

    David3 Dec. 07, 2012 - 04:06PM JST

    Yes. Don't get me wrong on this. War is a foolish enterprise and it is hoped that Japan will never capitulate to the US and rescind Article 9. Sadly, I hold little hope in that regard.

    Your comment here is contradicting to your own posts in the past. I found you are the extreme right winger on JT. So what are you? What do you believe, saidani?

  • 0

    kurisupisu

    Nationalism is on the rise -yes that is to be expected. The economy of Japan is tanking and the Japanese feel the malaise that has infected this country for over twenty years. What to do? The people are at a loss due to political ineptness and when there is talk of a 'strong' Japan and a Japan that will 'defend' itself then the people start to play follow the leader

    The same has happened in the past and was the cause of the last two world wars.

    It is time for the Japanese to wake up!

  • -4

    Geoff Gillespie

    Japan has had 50 years of saying ''it is sorry''

    Japan has never said it was sorry, not once. The wording used is always 'the government and people of Japan sincerely regrets...' and that isn't an apology because it doesn't take any responsibility for the crimes committed prior to and during the war.

  • -2

    basroil

    Thomas AndersonDec. 07, 2012 - 05:05PM JST

    People shouldn't be so paranoid about Article 9... it's very unlikely that the Japanese soldiers would suddenly go out of control like they did during the WW.

    Yes, talks about Article 9 are over the top. Even the USA suggested that they get rid of it, and they are the ones that mandated it in the first place.

    A much bigger issue than Article 9 is the fact that there is unequal protection under the law. All instances of "国民" (kokumin) except for holding of citizenship (right to permanently live in the country, hold Japanese passport, vote, hold public office) should be removed entirely. That will prevent the courts from abusing the constitution to uphold discrimination.

  • -2

    basroil

    Thomas AndersonDec. 07, 2012 - 07:26PM JST

    Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination was finally ratified by Japan in 1995... so in theory, all forms of racial discrimination are unconstitutional.

    Not unconstitutional at all, and the piece of work you cite is broken and unbelievably useless. I suggest you read up on the actual cases rather than bs laws passed so that UN would stop hounding them. http://www.debito.org/otarulawsuit.html

    Japan allows "rational discrimination" so long as it's not "excessive discrimination". The nationalists will try to reinforce that, while any sane person would seek to do away with it.

  • 3

    YuriOtani

    Japan is being called "right wing", aggressive, etc but the Americans want Japan to drop article #9. It is very puzzling people have been calling me right wing extremist for wanting to defend Japan but bash me for my support of article #9. The self defense force needs to remain a defense force. Japan does not want to get caught up in America's wars. We do not want to attack anyone but live in peace. Being able to defend ourselves is good but being able to attack another country is bad.

  • 0

    David3

    ****Thank you, Yuri Otani. Many people still don't see the power and importance of Article 9. Peace is a bad word to folks who are locked into the mind conditioning of the power elite, who themselves are addicted to their own conditioning - no less than the drug addict or alcoholic who become slaves to their own addiction. War is unhealthy and in the nuclear age it is suicidal.

  • 0

    saidani

    What wars? Please explain.

    Well, the bombing of Libya and the upcoming Syrian debacle. The continuation of Afghanistan. The posturing against China. The continued occupation of Okinawa (talk about human rights violations)

    You are talking to a true highly educated liberal.

    I'm sure that you think so. But a highly educated liberal does not necessarily mean that you are more intelligent. What gives anyone the right to tell others how to live and what to do with their money?

    There are many academic writings about Japanese racism, discrimination and nationalism you may want to read.

    To be sure, I can find equal writings about the racism which still exists in America but few Japanese rail on and on about it nor do they label a person racist for questioning Japan's education system. It may be a shock to you, but there are still many racists in the American Democratic party which you so ardently support. But that comes from a disinterested perspective.

  • 0

    tomoki

    Japanese society is moving toward conservatism after the 67 years of liberalization and Americanization after WWII. Nationalism is just an aspect of it. As far as China and Korea go, they tried to be on the side of US, victor of war which defeated japan. Japanese never felt that it lost the war against China and fought against Korea. Japanese are getting tired of apologizing, not for the facts of what Japan did but the so call facts seemingly concocted by Koreans and Chinese. Obviously there are disagreement about what "facts" are. Many Japanese also feels that their perception is correct, knowing that some of the facts such as Nankin incident or "sex slave", etc were initially stories created by the left wing Japanese, ourselves.

  • -3

    nigelboy

    This is a reason why former Western colonial powers never engaged in the apology business because it always ends up in a "not sincere enough" BS game that people play as a tool to constantly position themselves as victims.

    Hindingout pretty much nailed it for the detractors will always exaggerate with terms like "rest of the world" despite the fact that only two are the one making this a constant issue.

  • -3

    globalwatcher

    David3Dec. 07, 2012 - 11:46PM JST

    ****Thank you, Yuri Otani. Many people still don't see the power and importance of Article 9.

    Let me join you, David and Yuri. It is a marble of the Constitution. It is hard to keep but easy to discard it. Once discarded, it will never be back to the Constitution.

  • -3

    globalwatcher

    komuso killaDec. 07, 2012 - 07:56AM JST

    Pride.

    The same pride and nationalism took Japan into the WW2. The same pride and nationalism took Japan into a territorial mess with Russia. When do you learn? Or Japanese sheep generations will never get it. No more AKB and Ikemens for you.

  • 0

    JoeBigs

    Push a people hard enough and they will rise up and push you back.

    If the PRC and it's sevant nations wish to blame someone for pushing Japan to a more nationalist state then they best look themselves in the mirror and get ready.

  • -2

    Ch1n4Sailor

    Footage posted on the Internet shows the mask of civility soon slipping, as the men let out a volley of racist abuse at a city official.

    Don't feel alone, they do it to everyone that's NOT a True Blooded Japanese National, of course much less in Tokyo, where a larger percentage of people were educated abroad, and have more well rounded views, and information on Japan, Not just what granddad, or the old man down the street told them , when they were 7 years old.

    If you don't believe how rampant it actually is, you're living in a dream world.

    If there's any country in the world today, that owes literally everything to the kindness and generosity of it's neighbors, what they did, and more importantly, what they didn't do, it's Japan. Germany may have some fringe groups that carry on like this, but they are just that, a small small minority. In Japan, it's probably closer to 50-percent, if not more.

  • -4

    flowers

    The sticky point is there should be a “sincere” apology from Japan, not political statements that have no meaning afterwards as seen by the yearly visits of Japanese high-ranking officials to the Shrine and the history lessons that shown Japan as the victim of the War. And, don’t just say enough apology already, it will never be enough if you were the son or daughter of those who died or suffered during the war.

  • -3

    Thomas Anderson

    basroil

    Not unconstitutional at all, and the piece of work you cite is broken and unbelievably useless. I suggest you read up on the actual cases rather than bs laws passed so that UN would stop hounding them. http://www.debito.org/otarulawsuit.html

    Japan allows "rational discrimination" so long as it's not "excessive discrimination". The nationalists will try to reinforce that, while any sane person would seek to do away with it.

    It's not useless, Japan is just slow and half-hearted in adopting legislation outlawing racial discrimination.

    We need more politicians to adopt and support more anti-discrimination laws. Is the LDP going to do that? Obviously not.

  • -2

    Thomas Anderson

    YuriOtani

    Japan is being called "right wing", aggressive, etc but the Americans want Japan to drop article #9. It is very puzzling people have been calling me right wing extremist for wanting to defend Japan but bash me for my support of article #9.

    Like I said, the Article 9 has nothing to do with neither "right wing" nor "left wing". It's just something imposed by the GHQ and people are only blindly holding onto it. Why? Because they don't want to be reminded of the horrors of WW. Again, Japanese people have never properly dealt with their own history like the Germans have. And hence, the apprehension that they feel towards militarization. They believe that once they're militarized, they will go berserk again. They also have not properly apologized to its neighboring countries, and hence the neighboring countries are also skeptical of Japan. Again, it's the result of Japan never dealing with its past.

  • -3

    Thomas Anderson

    Militarization is neither right-wing nor left-wing. If we're talking about anti-war, then militarization and anti-war go hand in hand. Merely holding onto the Article 9 and never having military will NOT make the world any more peaceful. In fact I would say that Japan has not actually contributed that much to regional stability, abolishing wars and attaining world peace.

  • -2

    Thomas Anderson

    Japanese people often go into denial whenever they're confronted about their past, whenever they're criticized, etc, because they are not yet psychologically equipped to do so, it's as simple as that. It's obvious that those subjects disturb them psychologically, as would anyone. They can not yet emotionally accept the things that disturb them and their emotional equilibrium. So it's important to guide them into accepting objective facts and the things as they really are, even if they may make them feel uncomfortable. Unfortunately for Japan, there is no such social system set up to allow them to accept very disturbing things about their past. But denying about it will NOT make them feel any better. In fact it will only make things worse.

    I would say that denying the country's past is not necessarily "a shift towards the right". And the "left" has certainly not done a good job teaching and convincing people of their past in a proper way.

  • -1

    GW

    Hidingout,

    Sorry dude but speaking IN the Diet, does NOT make whats said an official statement, sorry but nice try.

    Oh & you should try re-reading supposed "apologies", as other have correctly pointed out the use REGRET, REMORSE do not mean apology................. also remember these "apologies" are 95% for domestic consumption. The words regret & remorse to me seem MUCH more likely to mean regret & remorse for LOSING WWII, not for what Japan did.

    So as many have pointed out Japan has done a great dis-service to itself in its self pity & inability to deal with its history from the 1930's, and here we are today & Japan wonders why it has problems with its neighbours..........well like I have said for ages Japan Reaps What It Sews.

  • -1

    hidingout

    Sorry dude but speaking IN the Diet, does NOT make whats said an official statement, sorry but nice try.

    Just as I expected - when given what you ask for you reply with more flimsy excuses. Reminds me of the folks who still try to insist that President Obama was born in Kenya.

    also remember these "apologies" are 95% for domestic consumption.

    How could that possibly be true when the vast majority of the apologies were tendered at face to face meetings with the various leaders of the ROK and communist china?

    The words regret & remorse to me seem MUCH more likely to mean regret & remorse for LOSING WWII, not for what Japan did.

    I'm sorry that you either didn't read the texts of the apologies I quoted above or have such poor reading comprehension that the meaning of simple sentences like "I would like to take the opportunity here to humbly reflect upon how the people of the Korean Peninsula went through unbearable pain and sorrow as a result of our country's actions during a certain period in the past and to express that we are sorry" and "Firstly at this occasion, we would like to express our deep remorse and apology for the fact that invasion and colonial rule by our nation in the past brought to bear great sufferings and sorrow upon many people." elude you. I guess that shouldn't surprise me since you seem unable to distinguish between "sew" and "sow".

    Honestly, continuing to deny the fact that Japan has apologized again and again puts you in the same camp as the extreme rightist (who try to deny that atrocities were ever committed in the first place) in that you allow your personal ideology to inhibit your ability to see reality as it exists in front you.

  • 0

    Kazuaki Shimazaki

    How could that possibly be true when the vast majority of the apologies were tendered at face to face meetings with the various leaders of the ROK and communist china?

    Not to mention, why is there a need to apologize for "domestic consumption"?

    While Japan's apologies are clearly never as deep as Germany, a fair view would say that there is a lot of "No True Scotsman" going on in China, Korea and even the US.

    It is frankly, too good a card to lose, especially for China and Korea.

  • 1

    GW

    Not to mention, why is there a need to apologize for "domestic consumption"?

    Kazuaki,

    Simple because the Japanese are the primary audience, concern, NOT those that Japan commited atrocities against, the mealy mouthed blurbs are purposely worded based primarily for Japanese not non-Japanese, they are & always have been the least politicians in Japan have been concerned about.

  • 1

    AustPaul

    I understand that racism exists in all countries but in Jsoan the frustrating thing, as has been previously stated, is that there is no legislation against such behaviour/treatment.

    I felt it when I first went to Tokyo in 1994.

    Imagine the uproar if this happened in another country against Japanese?

  • 1

    AustPaul

    'In Japan....'

  • -4

    Thomas Anderson

    Imagine the uproar if this happened in another country against Japanese?

    The ironic thing is that they would be screaming "racists" and "Japan bashing".

  • 0

    AustPaul

    I put it down to Japan being an old country and maybe not as progressive/worldly/socially responsible as it could be... 新世界

  • -1

    basroil

    Thomas AndersonDec. 08, 2012 - 08:41PM JST

    The ironic thing is that they would be screaming "racists" and "Japan bashing".

    Best example of that was when Arizona passed a law requiring all non-citizens to carry a passport or greencard at all times (or face possible detention until immigration status was confirmed). They all ran with the idea that is was ridiculous that Arizona discriminate against Japanese citizens. Of course, they completely ignored the fact that Japan mandates all non-citizens have state issued ID or Visa at all times, or face possible immediate deportation without trial.

    Japan needs to make sure all people are protected equally under the constitution, and yet some crazies are pushing for more discrimination.

  • -1

    globalwatcher

    I have examined all blogs here again to see what everyone had to say.

    Many comments with common sense got negative feedbacks. Wow, this trend convinced me that the nationalism is really taking off. This nationalism reminds me a wild cat in heat with no logics. I am very alarmed about Japan's future. History will be repeated.

  • -3

    Thomas Anderson

    I think the problem is that not enough people are being against nationalism... even though they don't necessarily agree with it. So the nationalists are doing whatever they like and having a lot of influence. Japanese people need to be against nationalism more.

  • 0

    YuriOtani

    Thomas article #9 makes a big difference. The ability to defend vs the ability to strike. The Peoples Republic would feel threaten if our ships would carry tomahawk missiles with atomic warheads. These days people say Japanese need to be ashamed and being proud of what you are is not nationalist.

  • -3

    Thomas Anderson

    Thomas article #9 makes a big difference. The ability to defend vs the ability to strike. The Peoples Republic would feel threaten if our ships would carry tomahawk missiles with atomic warheads. These days people say Japanese need to be ashamed and being proud of what you are is not nationalist.

    What is Japan doing about it to cooperate with other nations? Not much. You see for all the "peace" that they supposedly care about, they haven't actually done much.

  • 1

    Danny Silva

    They need to take back their country. If it takes Nationalism to do it, then so be it. For too long they've been the puppets of influencing nations. Their strength will balance the power in the region.

  • 0

    YuriOtani

    Thomas we have not been in a war for over 67 years. We have been at peace a lot longer than America, China or Korea. Unlike others we are not a threat to other nations.

  • -4

    Thomas Anderson

    Thomas we have not been in a war for over 67 years. We have been at peace a lot longer than America, China or Korea. Unlike others we are not a threat to other nations.

    Does that fact make the world any more peaceful? No. How has Japan contributed to ending war anywhere else in the world?

  • -4

    Thomas Anderson

    You say "we have been peaceful", but that's only because the Article 9 was imposed by the GHQ. Did Japan "choose" peace? No.

    What is Japan going to do about it when say, a war breaks out in East Asia? And why did Japan not stop it from occurring in the first place, like the EU or NATO? It's very unlikely that EU or NATO nations will start a war with each other, however we can't say the same for East Asia. What's Japan going to do when Japan and China starts a war?

  • 0

    Chamkun

    Tomas Anderson,

    I respect you, I have been reading your post for a long time. But some of your judgement that I feel sometimes that is more than your opinion but more historical judgment as a statement which is based on the narrow interpretation or our current limited knowledge of history.

    I think Julian's question is appropriate. I want to know, too . Because your opinions have sounded as if it is a strong statement sometimes. If you got your knowledge is 100% not biased one and based on the all true stories with pure facts, I might subscribe to what you have been saying here, But we know that so many things are not clear yet in reality but Japan did not say much till late 70s since Japan accepted SF treaty. But since 80s so many stories came out and some of them are not true based on the source.

    Generally speaking, the history is written by the winners with some political purpose. If China and Korea had not used them and seems expanded story some cases like the sex slave case even after the very original source confessed its fabrication, still as a weapon that is being used to take a political advantage and even erected a few monuments in America with a specific numbers as the statement on the monuments such as over 200,000 girls and women were abducted by Japan,,,in NY,In NJ...etc.

    Japan's today's mood that everyone is talking about would not have occurred if this kind of movement had not happened. I am telling here is not who is right or wrong,I am not a historian. I am telling here is that why people in Japan start to express their feeling that made world think Japan is being a right wing country today. This monument issue from Korea in America and many big anti Japan demonstrations in China are few of many examples.

    If the history becomes the cause for unstable future in Asia, the real history must be studied with out politicians's influence but more like pure seeking mind scholars to seek what happened purely. Then ideally, even if it takes for long time, one history book in Asia will be great.

    BY the way, many Koreans I met somehow use German government as an example as a direct comparison as you do ,too, that does not convince many people at all. Japan and German were completely a different historical case, different religious concept, so if some German politicians visit Hitler's cemetery, or some Japaneses politicians visit to Yasukuni, it has totally different meaning. The concept of life,soul (Mitama in Shinto)is oil and water. I never go to Yasukuni because I am a Buddhist. However, I want to protect the religious right for the people who understand the way they do for the Mitama.

    If people measure the action of JPN prime minister goes to Yasukuni based on the same comparison as a German president visit to Hitler's grave yard to show respect. I understand why many Koreans and Chinese get offended.

    Japan is blamed that we do not know the history. But the people who I have met from China and Korea to discuss this issue, even they do not know the difference between class A war criminal and B,or C criminal. But they say NO and show their anger because many class A criminals are there. I think we must define what studying history means from now on. At this moment, unless I have the exactly the same point of view in the history, I am told that I must study history by some people who can not even explain to me the difference among A,B, and C class war criminal but insist and push NO to Yasukuni because class A war criminals are there. We all should study to understand each other since the past can not be changed but future, Yes. if we can handle the history properly for building peace.

    Jiang Zemin gave in his guidance in 1998 that was, using a history to deal with Japan very strongly and forever to increase more political pressure. Some of the historical facts could be a deception or biased from both side. I dislike Zemin's idea to use history as a weapon instead of as a bad example to not repeat.

    Any way the point is how Japan is shifting to right (I personally feel shifting to the slightly right middle) is seeking our identity issue much more than a political issue or any aggression toward to other countries.Sorry my writing went to many directions.

  • 2

    AustPaul

    There is nothing wrong with being patroitic but I think there is a thin line between that and nationalism.

    I only speak for myself here as it appears that contributors on this forum are from a variety of countries, but one day I would like to see a Japan which respects other cultures and people even if they live in their country (Japan) and contribute to its society. I know racism and extremism exists in all countries but as I have previously stated in Japan the government seems to sit on it's hands about it and does little to protect it's foreign citizens. Why? Do they have less rights than Japanese nationals?

    I know this is hard as Japan is a very homogenous society but it is 2012, not 1812! Makes me wonder why this is not reported more overseas...

  • -1

    basroil

    YuriOtaniDec. 09, 2012 - 11:08AM JST

    Thomas article #9 makes a big difference. The ability to defend vs the ability to strike. The Peoples Republic would feel threaten if our ships would carry tomahawk missiles with atomic warheads. These days people say Japanese need to be ashamed and being proud of what you are is not nationalist.

    1 - Japan does not have nukes

    2 - China does have nukes

    3 - No country other than the USA has BGM-109A Tomahawk Land Attack Missile carrying ships

    4 - USA already has those in the area

    5 - No Japanese ships even carry BGM-109 missiles or derivatives.

    6 - Nationalism isn't the issue, it's the type of nationalism these folks want. You cannot compare people happy about their country now (normal people) to those who only see the country in 1940s view (upper house politicians) or 1980s view (lower house).

  • 4

    zichi

    Being patroitic is not the same has being nationalist.

    Patroitic means you love your country and wish to see it grow and expand and increase the quality of life for all its citizens. It also means you are willing to defend your country against an enemy, even to the point of giving your life. Being patroitic don't mean holding onto your culture at all costs, instead can see the need for it to change and grow, while still holding the basic values which are revelant. Being patroitic don't mean your country is the best or even better than any other country.

    Being nationalistic is something very different. Patroits can be of any political side, from the right to the left, while nationalists are very much right wing, and often very extremist in their political thinking. They are the ones which will hold back the advancement of their countries and culture, they want to hold it in some kind of time warp where nothing changes. They always consider their country and culture to be the best in the world.

    With its aging society and one of the lowest birthrates in the world, in the coming decades, Japan will need the help of millions of foreigners if its to survive at it current quality of society and life.Upwards of 30 million foreigners will be needed by 2050, to do the work and pay the taxes. Without that, the country will go on a downward spiral.

    Those new foreign workers are gong to want equal rights which is something nationalists would never agree to while patroits will understand the need if the country is to survive.

  • 1

    yabits

    @zichi:

    Great post! You've summed it up very well.

    I tend to think that many nationalist sentiments are often "last gasp" efforts, spurred to try to hold onto something in a losing cause.

  • 2

    zichi

    Patriots are happy to live in another country with another culture (ex-pats) but nationalists would never leave theirs, probably not even for vacations.

  • -1

    globalwatcher

    zichiDec. 09, 2012 - 05:22PM JST

    Great post, zichi. Well done.

    The bottom line here is to learn the difference between the two. But can they?. I am not so sure about that as . Japanese school does not teach this material in history class as a fact. If you talk to older Japansese seniors (age 80-90) , you will find that they still believe the WWII was well justified believing Japan was trying to free the SE Asians from British Colonization.They still do not forgive Americans for what they have done for Nagasaki and Hiroshima. You may not like to hear this, but that's the truth.

    I once had a great opportunity to cruise Europe with Mrs. Honma who was married to General Honma of Japanese Imperial Army.We visited their old place where they used to live in London. Learned a lot how these two can be easily mixed up. I am very cautious about this movement in Japan. Thank you for sharing your view on this matter.

  • -1

    Thomas Anderson

    Japanese school does not teach this material in history class as a fact. If you talk to older Japansese seniors (age 80-90) , you will find that they still believe the WWII was well justified believing Japan was trying to free the SE Asians from British Colonization.

    Unfortunately I think that many Japanese people are still only concerned with what makes them feel good, rather than what is just or what is a fact or what is correct and so forth. If their own past makes them feel uncomfortable, then they won't touch it and even go as far as denying it entirely. In fact this is how they deal with all things in their society. They would rather smooth things over rather than potentially having their emotional equilibrium disturbed.

    Ultimately, this is rather egocentric and even childish. This is something that they would need to eventually grow out of.

  • 2

    zichi

    Patriots will die defending their country, nationalists will kill for it.

  • -1

    Betraythetrust!

    @Zichi Nobody owns a country and who defines what is defence or attack?

  • 0

    YuriOtani

    Thomas while the allies imposed article #9 on Japan they soon regretted it. Today it belongs to the people of Japan. It is in there because of our desires and no matter how much they wish to rescind article #9 it will not happen. Oh Japanese want to be happy people not forever being in shame for our ancestors. Todays Japan has committed no war crimes. We have nothing to be ashamed.

    basroil if Japan wanted any of those weapons we would have them. True not an American tomahawk but we can make our our version. However as long as there is article #9 it will not happen

  • -1

    hidingout

    If you talk to older Japansese seniors (age 80-90) , you will find that they still believe the WWII was well justified believing Japan was trying to free the SE Asians from British Colonization.They still do not forgive Americans for what they have done for Nagasaki and Hiroshima. You may not like to hear this.

    Of course they don't forgive, would you?

    The difference is they aren't still whining for an apology. And for the most part Japan has learned to deal with America and considers her an ally and an economic partner.

  • -2

    Thomas Anderson

    Today it belongs to the people of Japan.

    Japan didn't choose peace, they had no choice. They are only being against war because they lost the war, not because they are morally against the war apparently.

    Oh Japanese want to be happy people

    Do you actually think that it's a good idea for Japan to be without military? Does lack of having military automatically mean peace for the world or Japan? Obviously, no. It's not that simple. If that was the case then there would be world peace already.

    forever being in shame for our ancestors. Todays Japan has committed no war crimes. We have nothing to be ashamed.

    Knowing the past as it happened and not glorifying it != being ashamed. What you SHOULD be ashamed of is distorting, denying, glorifying and rationalizing the Japan's past as if to make everything sound all nice and neat just to make yourself feel better. History is not there just to make yourself feel better or make you feel proud about your own country. History only describes things as it happened. Your country might have done a lot of horrible things that you might be ashamed of if you knew it. But you'd have to accept that, because that's just what happened. History is not entertainment, it's not there just to amuse you like as if you were watching an entertaining movie.

  • 0

    cleo

    Do you actually think that it's a good idea for Japan to be without military?

    japan is not without military, it has a perfectly good military called the Jieitai, Self-Defence Force. What Japan doesn't have is the option to start a war or help some other country start a war. I think it would be a very good idea for more countries to abandon the option to start wars. People who live in countries that have been invaded for their oil and other resources in recent years probably also wish their invaders hadn't had that option.

  • -2

    Thomas Anderson

    japan is not without military, it has a perfectly good military called the Jieitai, Self-Defence Force

    I didn't say that Japan didn't have SDF. And yes, Japan practically already has military, so the Article 9 doesn't really make that much of a difference.

    What Japan doesn't have is the option to start a war or help some other country start a war. I think it would be a very good idea for more countries to abandon the option to start wars.

    Well you see the problem is that Japan becomes more isolated because it can not have military coalition with the other nations, which actually reduces the chance of starting a war.

    It's naive to think that the Article 9 will somehow magically bring world peace. It's hubris of Japan actually to think that it's such a "peaceful" nation. Both the left and the right in Japan indulges in this mirage of "peaceful Japan".

  • 2

    ikemen

    Yes is getting more nationalistic, or rather, more people are saying things that they have always thought.

    But, it's still the case that everyone is nice to me and my kids. If the day comes when someone yells at me to get out of the country etc, I'll be able to say that it took almost 20 years for my first bad experience. How many foreigners in other countries could say that?

    But the idea that Japan could absorb 20 million immigrants without massive social problems is incredibly over optimistic.

  • 0

    cleo

    Article 9 doesn't really make that much of a difference.....Japan becomes more isolated because it can not have military coalition with the other nations

    Article 9 stops Japan helping other countries start wars. It hasn't stopped Japan engaging in legitimate peace-keeping operations.

  • -4

    Thomas Anderson

    Article 9 stops Japan helping other countries start wars. It hasn't stopped Japan engaging in legitimate peace-keeping operations.

    The people who support Article 9 are even against joining peace keeping operations.

    Can there NEVER be any war? Should Japan become involved if there ever was war? Japan was criticized for example in not contributing enough during the Gulf War. Is it healthy for the Japanese soldiers to always stay in their own country and do nothing?

  • 0

    CrisGerSan

    The article that all of this chat generated is clearly an effort to paint Japan and this city in a negative light. The fact that this proposed event was to promote a foreign culture and any society has the right to keep prime focus on its own culture, seems to be missed by many here. The larger issues raised include "neo nationalistm", Japan's role and response since to WWII, the view the world may have of Japan today and the role of healthy self respect in a society of long history and venerable tradition.

    Firstly i saw so much mistaken history here that i just cant quote or deal with it there is too much. I also see people resorting to personal attacks when confronted by facts that they don't like. So I won't bother to quote more facts, you did your best, Hindingout and some others have as well. Bottom line, Japan is an honorable country with a rich and very respectable history. Every major society and nation in the modern world has committed many errors, crimes against humanity and been involved in tough struggles external or internal. None are saints.

    Today the modern world is trying, somewhat successfully to live more peacefully. Japan is among the leading nations making that effort, no other nation on earth has a clearly stated constitutional clause against war. Japanese leaders and leadership has expressed deepest and most sincere regret for events in the war, but to any educated student of that history, Japan was not the sole cause of the war by any means, and the United States committed much more deadly acts against Japan than any other nation on any other in that war, proportinally and with less valid cause. The US efforts to help rebuilding and to support Japan militarily make ethical as well as moral common sense.

    However, no society can long continue that does not respect itself and defend itself, and put itself ahead of all others, and any society and people have that right and that obligation. Jingoistic words like nationalistm and racism are used by the modern liberalist propagandists to try to support the irrational and frankly ignorant modern "liberal view" that has been shown to be morally and realistically ridiculous. I wont waste any time or typing on trying to prove that, it is obvious to any sane and rational and educated person. Japan has every right and indeed the obligation to support itself and to review the constitution to allow that, the United States is in a serious moral and commercial decline due to four generations of misguided liberaist excesses, and is bankrupt and wont be of much use, tho it will stand up to China for a while out of lingering pride and self respect..there are some in the US who still to have courage and remember their friends.

    I dont see much purpose to reading any more of this thread as the same few people keep saying the same empty and wrong ideas over and over. I am trusting intelligent Japanese people will continue to strengthen their culture and their resolve, and they have every right to.

  • 2

    Thomas Anderson

    The fact that this proposed event was to promote a foreign culture and any society has the right to keep prime focus on its own culture, seems to be missed by many here.

    This is wrong on so many levels.

    1. People have the right to promote and maintain foreign cultures in Japan. There are even indigenous people of Japan and Okinawans, etc who have different cultures than the ethnic Japanese.

    2. People promoting foreign cultures in Japan does not diminish the current Japanese culture. The more the merrier. Monoculturism in Japan is clearly not working as many Japanese companies are failing due to lack of their competitiveness in the global world.

  • -6

    basroil

    YuriOtaniDec. 10, 2012 - 03:15AM JST

    if Japan wanted any of those weapons we would have them. True not an American tomahawk but we can make our our version.

    Japan doesn't have the technological know-how or resources to make weapons by themselves. They have no GPS equivalent outside a tiny space (and certainly not as accurate as GPSIII), and therefore can't make accurate long range missiles. Most of the Japanese fleet is missile/torpedo ships, and therefore can't even function without external support. If the nationalists do anything without US approval they will find themselves with a whole bunch of bark and a mouth full of rotting teeth.

  • 1

    cleo

    The people who support Article 9 are even against joining peace keeping operations.

    'The people who support Article 9' are not an amorphous blob with only one opinion. Some are against Japan joining peace-keeping operations; some have reservations; some are in favour.

    Should Japan become involved if there ever was war? Japan was criticized for example in not contributing enough during the Gulf War.

    Does any other country in the world base its military action on what other folk might think and/or say?

    Is it healthy for the Japanese soldiers to always stay in their own country and do nothing?

    Stay in their own country, yes of course, their job is to defend Japan. They don't 'do nothing' - in the absence of military aggression, they mobilise in times of natural disaster, which is another and very important way of defending Japan. It doesn't all have to be tanks and bombs.

  • -4

    Thomas Anderson

    'The people who support Article 9' are not an amorphous blob with only one opinion. Some are against Japan joining peace-keeping operations; some have reservations; some are in favour.

    It depends on how you interpret the Article 9. Some go as far as saying that the SDF are illegitimate.

    Does any other country in the world base its military action on what other folk might think and/or say?

    Yes, it's called the NATO...

    Stay in their own country, yes of course, their job is to defend Japan. They don't 'do nothing' - in the absence of military aggression, they mobilise in times of natural disaster, which is another and very important way of defending Japan. It doesn't all have to be tanks and bombs.

    That's not healthy, and they would not gain any realistic experience cooperating with the other nations' military in the actual battlefield, which would be an invaluable experience for the Japanese military.

    It's time for Japan to become a "normal country" that is actually involved with the rest of the world, to be an independent sovereign nation that is not merely a protectorate of the US (another thing about the Article 9, as long as the Article 9 is held, then it will be dependent on US), and not just barely show up almost invisibly in the world's stage. That is the view of the "realistic left".

  • 0

    cleo

    It depends on how you interpret the Article 9.

    Of course it does. 'The people who support Article 9' don't all think as one.

    they would not gain any realistic experience cooperating with the other nations' military in the actual battlefield

    Experience of attacking civilians instead of defending them? Not needed.

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