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Akie Abe reportedly in hot water with mother-in-law over school scandal

32 Comments

What fond mother isn’t convinced her son married beneath him, and her? It’s the stuff of comedy, stale and funny at the same time. It’s stale because it’s old, enduring because it’s true to life, and funny as long as it’s someone else’s problem. When it’s yours, it’s not funny. Ask Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

He’s not laughing, says Shukan Gendai (April 8). “My mother’s furious,” the magazine reports him confiding to an unnamed “close acquaintance.” “I don’t know what to do. Ever since this business started, my wife and I can hardly walk into the house.”

“This business,” of course, is the snowballing scandal whose core is Moritomo Gakuen, an Osaka-based purveyor of hyper-patriotic education at the nursery school level. Its projected development of a private elementary school whose honorary principal was to have been Abe’s wife Akie is in suspension. Suddenly this once obscure business concern found itself dominating the national news. Who enabled it to purchase government land so cheaply? How closely linked is it to the prime minister (the elementary school’s name was originally to have borne his name), to Akie (who allegedly donated 1 million yen to the enterprise in her husband’s name), and to other leading political figures as well, including Defense Minister Tomomi Inada?

And what was it teaching its 3- and 4-year-old charges? Children hardly old enough to know what they were saying raising fervid chants of “Go, Prime Minister Abe!” “China, South Korea, change your hearts, don’t teach lying history!” and so on struck mainstream opinion as eerie, if not positively threatening to elementary democratic values.

The house Mr and Mrs Abe find so painful to enter lately is their private residence in Tokyo’s Shibuya ward. It’s a three-story residence in a quiet Shibuya neighborhood. Abe and Akie occupy the second floor, Abe’s mother Yoko the third.

Tensions between Yoko and Akie are old news. Yoko is a political blueblood – prime minister’s daughter, foreign minister’s wife, prime minister’s mother. Akie is from the private sector – wealthy enough, daughter of the president of Morinaga, one of Japan’s largest confectionery companies, but, in Yoko’s eyes, flighty, conspicuously lacking in the gravitas she herself embodies so unflinchingly.

The Moritomo Gakuen affair, and Akie’s role in it, seem to confirm Yoko’s worst fears. There Akie was, in photographs too clear to brook denial, shedding tears of emotion as Moritomo Gakuen kids chorused, “Prime Minister Abe is the man who protects Japan!” The alleged million-yen donation Akie does deny, but the prime minister’s support ratings continue to dip regardless.

An unnamed “Liberal Democratic Party veteran Diet member” tells Shukan Gendai that Akie has spoken to friends of being “afraid of my mother-in-law’s scoldings,” to the point that “going home is depressing.” The prime minister, caught most uncomfortably between his wife and mother, seems to recognize his wife’s shortcomings. He is quoted as saying privately, “Akie doesn’t listen to people. Even with this (Moritomo Gakuen) business, she’s still out making public appearances. You’d think she’d learn a bit from experience.”

No sign of that so far, or of awareness that she is a key figure in a scandal that could paralyze her husband’s administration. Shukan Gendai concludes with a warning: At this rate, “it won’t be only Yoko who considers Akie unworthy of being the prime minister’s wife. It’ll be the nation as a whole.”

© Japan Today

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.


32 Comments
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Hell hath no fury like a m-in-law scorned !

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Finally this is back in the news!!!!!

China, South Korea, change your hearts, don’t teach lying history!

Hi kettle, you haven't met pot by chance have you?

The massive cruelty metted onto other nations is world renowned. Pretty sure that mantra should start with entire planet change.. Ridiculous!!

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Clever diversion, Shinzo and Mom.

A pity we see right through it.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Such a pity Akie-san dropped her cell phone in water and wiped her emails.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

Correct me if I am wrong. In the USA when I think of "private" education I think of top notch schools from K-12 and University. In Japan when I think "private" education I think no good institution that puts money first and is only for students who could not cut in the public school system. I feel like there are FAR more Moritomo Gakuen out there than good private schools.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

He still lives with Mum, now I understand why he travels so much. And his Norman Bates persona.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Correct me if I am wrong

Mostly wrong. Many private schools in Japan are run by Christian organisations, some have other religious affiliations and some have none. But this kind of overt politics is basically unknown. Some of the schools charge a lot of money, but they are not money-making enterprises and the operate without the benefit of any public funds.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

They ARE money-making enterprises. They get plenty of public funds. Correct me if I am wrong.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Correct me if I am wrong

Wrong.

It's unrealistic to blame Akie-fujin for this problem though, as all she did was to enthusiastically support her husband's nationalistic views. She was not going against his will in the slightest.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Shinzooo your bath is ready. ,"coming Mother". Shinzooo that woman you married is on the news again, "Yes Mother" Shinzoo you will never be as great as your Grandfather, "Yes Mother" Shinzoo I told you not to marry HER."Yes Mother" All is clear now about the Dear Leader.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

Shukan Gendai? One of the worst tabloid publications in Japan. What the heck are you doing JT?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

More misdirection away from the real questions that remain to be answered.

Also, no mention of Shinzo's mate, the private university operator, getting a sweetheart deal on some land in Imabari?

http://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20170314/p2a/00m/0na/017000c

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Yoko is a political blueblood – prime minister’s daughter, foreign minister’s wife, prime minister’s mother.

And Abe is the same. How is it in free and equal democracies where potentially anyone can be elected that we still end up with political dynasties, little different from the dark ages? It is because we continually elect people on the basis of their names and political affiliations that even developed countries have corrupt governments. We are supposed to be electing our peers, people like ourselves, who live working lives, and suffer the same hardships and problems we face. Instead we continue to elect "political blue-bloods" who are not our peers, and who know nothing of working for a wage, paying a wage, or anything else related to real work.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Akie can pay off Yoko to calm down. She has the cash and will power to do so.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

His salary is monthly more than many people earn in a year, Sinzo at 70+ might be time to move out and become an adult. I'm sure you could get some land at a considerable discount.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

abe you spineless piece of CRAP!!!

I am ZERO of you or your wife, HOWEVER, for YOU to let your mommy dump all over YOUR wife, what the hell, man up!! Defend your wife, for crying out load she does your bidding for you, goes to yasukuni for YOU

And you let mommy dump all over her while you keep quiet, what a LOUSY husband you are.

Again I don't like abe or akie at all, but seeing spineless abe cow towing to mom, what a WIMP!!

And this blurb finishes with this ""lovely"" quip!

Shukan Gendai concludes with a warning: At this rate, “it won’t be only Yoko who considers Akie unworthy of being the prime minister’s wife. It’ll be the nation as a whole.”

OMG! Again I DONT like akie at all, but the above both scary & downright misogynist as hell!!

10 ( +11 / -1 )

“China, South Korea, change your hearts, don’t teach lying history!”

Pot calling the kettle black

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Blue blood or not, the bottom line, all humans die, all humans bleed red. Abe's mother is no exception to the rule and when she dies cannot take money or any possessions though many have tried..but they theory remains to be proven.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I'm not big fan of Akie either but for fox sake she's your wife! Like GW said above, she does his stuff and support him all the time. And in exchange, he lets his mama walk all over her? And whoever thinks "she's unworthy of being the prime minister’s wife" should go look in a mirror and judge themselves.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Shinzoo I told you not to marry HER

Considering Akie is probably richer than Shinzo I am sure Shinzo's mom put up little fight.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I feel like this story, or "leak" if you will, is to try to further blame the wife, and the wife only....that it's all her fault, even in private...

2 ( +4 / -2 )

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Mirrors & smokescreen - weak & thin, though.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

"China, South Korea, change your hearts, don’t teach lying history!"

Sometimes Japan puts even North Korea to shame with its education contents.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Cricky at Apr. 03, 2017 - 11:48AM JST "Sinzo at 70+ might be time to move out..."

Abe Shinzo was born in 1954 and is now 62 years old.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Oh, for one second I thought the mother in law was angry because of the dishonesty behind this scandal, but if this article is to be believed, it's actually just because she found an excuse to rave about Akie who wasn't elite enough for her tastes.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I stand corrected 62, I tend to judge people on the company they keep, thus the 70+ comment. Now I can see why a super rich leader of Japan lives with his Mum. His not yet a mature individual. I'll give him another 10 years to find his feet.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Oh, for one second I thought the mother in law was angry because of the dishonesty behind this scandal, but if this article is to be believed, it's actually just because she found an excuse to rave about Akie who wasn't elite enough for her tastes.

Girls will be girls, regardless of their age.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Not only her mother-in-law, but many are furious about Akie Abe's involvement with Moritomo Gakuen that might bring down her PM husband. Shinzo Abe is just the right leader to counter China. If he were removed because of Akie's...stupidity, many will just want to slap her, including me. Somebody please design an APP for this to run on my smart phone.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

m6bob,

Shinzo Abe is just the right leader to counter China.

I hope you're being sarcastic.

You are, aren’t you?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Being in hot water with your mother in law is the LEAST of her worries.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Abe needs to step up and tell mom to shut up. Lucky they don't put mom in a home. Let her understand who's doing who a favor. Times are changing. Abe loves Trump, as we all do.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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