Politics and Economy

Jusen Asuka
Global warming a major factor behind refugee problem
Global warming is deeply related to Syria’s refugee crisis. From 2006 to 2010, Syria experienced what are believed to be the driest conditions in the country’s history. According to recent studies, global warming has altered wind currents, leading to reduced rainfall and depriving the soil of moisture. Coupled with the massive amount of water required for cotton cultivation, an industry promoted by the Bashar al-Assad regime, agricultural production has plummeted, grain prices have soared and more children have suffered from diseases attributed to malnutrition.
Damian Flanagan
Yukio Mishima’s epic battle against time
What do you think of when you hear the name "Yukio Mishima"?
Ra Mason
A closer look at media's role in Japan's history
BOOK REVIEW: 'MEDIA, PROPAGANDA AND POLITICS IN 20TH-CENTURY JAPAN.' The Asahi Shimbun Company: Translated by Barak Kushner, Foreward by Funabashi Yoichi. London: Bloomsbury, 2015.
Satoshi Kamata
Japanese firms lining up to enter military-ruled Myanmar, 'Asia's last frontier'
In September, I visited Myanmar, where Japanese companies are rapidly entering the market.
Michiko Yoshii
Even faith can be wiped out by belief in nuclear power
Dokeiji, an ancient temple of the Soto sect, stands on land owned by the Soma clan since the Kamakura Period (1185-1333).
Michiko Yoshii
Ponderings at Auschwitz: Okinawa and Vietnam where the same thing can happen again
I decided to visit Auschwitz. On my way back from an international conference in Berlin in July, I first went to Poland. The day before reaching Auschwitz, I entered the ancient Polish city of Krakow.
Yoon Sang-in
South Korea's love for Japanese literature unscathed by political strife
In cities outside Japan, Seoul has probably one of the world’s largest populations of devotees to Japanese literature.
Rahul Raj
Killing many birds with 1 stone: South Korea's participation in China's WWII celebration
A new partnership is developing in Northeast Asia that sees South Korea developing closer ties with China to counter Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's revisionist policies in Japan.
Xie Zhihai
Historical reconciliation will lead to a common East Asian identity
East Asia has undergone an unprecedented economic transformation, but it is still beset by issues that have left a deep scar on the three major powers in the region.
Yoshiyuki Ogasawara
Four months until Taiwan Vote: A change of government very likely
There are still four months to go until Taiwan’s presidential election in January, and political observers already appear united in their predictions.
Damian Flanagan
Interview/ John Nathan: An extraordinary life in Japan and beyond
John Nathan's name card reads, "Takashima professor of Japanese literature at the University of California, Santa Barbara." It simply does not have room to list all of Nathan’s past lives and diverse talents--a prolific translator of Japanese literature, a film director and producer, a scriptwriter, businessman, biographer, novelist and memoirist.
Peter McGill
Ghost of Kishi hovers over Abe's 70th anniversary amnesia
Mount Sangane Skyline is a toll road in Aichi Prefecture known as "Hydrangea Line" for the 70,000 hydrangeas that bloom in early summer. The summit also offers superb views over Mikawa Bay and the Chita Peninsula.
Tomoko Ako
'Rule of law' still distant in China
In China, more than 200 human rights lawyers and related personnel were taken in or detained from July 9 to 16. Although most of them have already been released, around 20 remain detained or out of contact.
Tetsuo Shibata
Abe's war statement needs to include the region's shared values
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is in the spotlight both at home and abroad over what he will say in his statement to mark the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II.
Ari Nakano
Revising official view of history in Vietnam no easy matter
History is at times created by the media. So says Le Van Phuong, a lieutenant in the People’s Army of North Vietnam (also known as the North Vietnamese Army) who, riding a tank, was among the first to enter the presidential compound of South Vietnam in Saigon (now Ho Chi Minh City) on April 30, 1975.
Yoshiharu Tsuboi
Vietnam's balancing act between the U.S., China
At a time when Vietnam is growing increasingly wary of China, I was invited to an April 30 ceremony in Ho Chi Minh City to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the end of the Vietnam War.
Bhubhindar Singh
Abe has chance to make history with statement marking 70th anniversary of war
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s visit to the United States at the end of April was a resounding success. One of the main outcomes of the five-day visit was the signing of the new Guidelines for Japan-U.S. Defense Cooperation.
Tomoko Ako
Chinese human rights lawyer Pu Zhiqiang being punished unfairly
Pu Zhiqiang, a Chinese human rights lawyer, has been indicted by prosecutors in Beijing for the crimes of inciting a public disturbance and stirring up racial enmity. He was detained for holding a private study session for a dozen or so people in May 2014 to reflect on the 25th anniversary of the crackdown against pro-democracy demonstrators in Tiananmen Square.
Japan still too inward-looking to recognize untapped resource of global citizens
Kotetsu Murakami is 7 years old. At his elementary school, in line with current educational policy, his principal often writes in his newsletters about the need for Japan to produce "global human resources" (gurobaru jinzai). As a means to this end, all pupils at his school learn English.
Akira Iriye
Japan must make a full commitment to the principle of human rights
Historians worldwide are in great demand this spring as people and governments everywhere commemorate the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II.

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