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Clinton visits Meiji Shrine

45 Comments

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is led by Shinto priests as she visits Meiji Shrine in Tokyo on Tuesday morning. Clinton said she came to the shrine to ''show respect for the history and culture of Japan'' and expressed hope for an ''even better future.'' Accompanied by chief priest Seitaro Nakajima, Clinton bowed in front of the shrine once before signing a registry book and writing down comments. She also watched shrine maidens perform a sacred dance based on a poem by Emperor Showa, the posthumous name of Emperor Hirohito (1926-1989), which hopes for peace. Clinton's appearance came as a surprise to some of the visitors to the shrine in the morning. ''She seemed to have an inner fortitude, unlike our country's politicians,'' Aiko Mizukami, 71, said.

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If she visits Yasukuni I'm going to roll on the floor laughing my..

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Hillary (and her entourage) are probably wondering what she is doing there, strolling around in the cold wind so early in the morning.

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I guess they didn't have anything more important to do.

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In Japan politics is divided from the religion. Why an american leader should visit a temple on an official visit? She should visit it as a tourist, not as a secretary of state.

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Well, next; she'll probably be taken to an ikebana school...

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Well, next; she'll probably be taken to an ikebana school...

that will be tomorrow's picture of the day It is nice that JT keeps us informed about every hour of hilary in Japan

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Every Japanese person in the pic looks miserable.

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I bet she gets to leave from Haneda too. I always have to go all the way to Narita whenever I leave Japan.

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I can already hear the Republicans gnashing their teeth over this.

The woman they so love to hate is getting a Japanese government-funded tour of the capital!

Too much! :-)

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Every Japanese person in the pic looks miserable.

The guy behind Hillary looks happy (with the glasses)

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Hat's off to Mizukami-san for calling a spade a spade. Nice contrast -- a drunk Nakagawa and a professional Clinton with "inner fortitude". Will the women here ever get a chance to have some power, so all the old drunks like Nakagawa are history?

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Why does Christopher Hill seem to be eying her up?

Has he got a crush on Hillary or something?

Look out Bill!

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In Japan politics is divided from the religion. Why an american leader should visit a temple on an official visit? She should visit it as a tourist, not as a secretary of state.

As much as I dislike the Clinton's, nothing she could do would amount to anything but good, as compared with the last 8 years of that lying, stealing, cheating crook we had in the white house...

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"The guy behind Hillary looks happy ( with the glasses)"

He's the only one cool enough to wear sunglasses. No, wait, is that a guy wearing sunglasses behind the priest?

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Hillary is a beautiful lady with great style. The Japanese lady next to her pales. American women have good fashion taste! A+ for Hillary's elegance!

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As expected, some of the Japanese press use the term "sanpai" to describe her visit. The term means "visit worship," which is exactly what she looked like she was doing. There goes her claim to anything Christian in her.

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Why Meiji Shine? Yasukuni is much more interesting.

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Some great tax's payers work!! She gets to travel all over the world while some are stuck with no food and shelter in her own home country!! She was just touring, they call this "politics"??!! More like having a blast!!

Every Japanese person in the pic looks miserable.

Yea I agree, they look kind of like "I wish I was in my happy place" face....

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"Why Meiji Shine? Yasukuni is much more interesting."

This. So this.

"I can already hear the Republicans gnashing their teeth over this.

The woman they so love to hate is getting a Japanese government-funded tour of the capital!

Too much! :-)"

And why should they care or begin 'gnashing their teeth'?

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She looks good

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I wonder if she went to Snoopy Town in Harajuku afterwards.

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this thread takes the cake for silly comments on JT.

Let her do her job, or did you forget that she's a diplomat?

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She should see Yasukuni shrine and show respect there. Now that will make headlines.

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moonbeams is spot on, this thread speaks more to the character of people making these petty comments.

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Like John McCain and the Republicans last November, Hillary's hairspray completely failed. :-)

Meiji shrine rocks. You go in there even on a busy day and you'll instantly be subdued by the silence and hues of nature. It's all good.

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Go Hillary Rod Ham Clinton!

But was it really wise to leave Bill unattended?

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Glad to see Hillary choose Japan as her first country to visit as SEC of State. It does show the Japanese how much the U.S does value the importance of our relationship.

Her new job will be demanding and will involve lot's of travel away from the States. It is good that Bill is such a supportive husband. Most men after they have more or less retired from public life usually want to spend more time with the spouse and enjoy their time together.

Bill on the other hand just seems pretty content with being away from her for long periods of time, a true modern male. I just hope that he's doing things that are keeping his hands full while she is away, like maybe yardwork or something.

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Sailwind - "I just hope that he's doing things that are keeping his hands full while she is away, like maybe yardwork or something."

Your 'or something' is well and truly open to debate. :-)

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Hilary is just doing the "diplomatic thang" going to Meiji Jingu. But, who knows, maybe the great silence-filled place that it is will strike a hidden spot in her, like it no doubt has with many of the commentators on this site. I think she looks great, and everyone else in the photo simply doing their job. Don't overlook the pivotal role Japan plays in the US East Asian situation.

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"Showing respect for the history and culture of Japan" is fine, so long as you know what you are doing. I was disappointed, but not surprised by the actions of Hillary. As a professing "Christian" and therfore a follower of the One True God, bowing down in front of a shrine dedicated to Japan`s 800 million Shinto "gods" shows that she has no understanding either of the Faith she professes to be a member of, nor indeed any clear understanding of the "history and culture" of Japan. It was State Shinto, represented by Meiji Shrine, which was responsible for the deaths of millions of Japanese and foreign nationals before and during the Second World War. Hillary has obviously not got a clue, and this act does not bode well for her time in office.

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"Hillary has obviously not got a clue, and this act does not bode well for her time in office."...no ,a confident christian will tolerate just about any other religion. You can freely worship your God but you can also show respect to other people's belief. Hillary is great.

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tclh -- agree completely. As is often the case "realist" has gone off on a tangent, and left reality far behind. If a christian goes to a Jewish wedding and wears a yamakah out of respect, does that mean he/she has no "undersatnding of the faith she professes"? Please. Respect and worship are different concepts. A distinction realist apparantly cannot grasp. Even though christian leaders including the Pope have, as he has visited Jewish and non-Catholic places of worship numerous times. I say -- good on Clinton.

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"Showing respect for the history and culture of Japan" is fine, so long as you know what you are doing. I was disappointed, but not surprised by the actions of Hillary. As a professing "Christian" and therfore a follower of the One True God, bowing down in front of a shrine dedicated to Japan`s 800 million Shinto "gods" shows that she has no understanding either of the Faith she professes to be a member of, nor indeed any clear understanding of the "history and culture" of Japan. It was State Shinto, represented by Meiji Shrine, which was responsible for the deaths of millions of Japanese and foreign nationals before and during the Second World War. Hillary has obviously not got a clue, and this act does not bode well for her time in office."

What a strange almost fanatic post.

Hillary is a lumbering water buffalo going from place to place awkwardly but to say she's wrong for doing something cultural? Please. There are plenty of other reasons to find fault with her. People always go batty when religion is involved.

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tclh - absolutely and totally agree.

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I would be very interested to know how the decision and plans were made to visit Meiji Shrine. Was it something the Americans initiated with the Japanese, as in "We would like to do something that openly shows our respect for your culture and traditions. What would you suggest?" On the other hand, I suspect that the choice of the location could well have come from one the Japan experts at the State Department.

Anyway, I am proud that she is representing the United States.

As to her "bowing" to show respect to her hosts, a simple gesture like that shows humility and does more to advance the cause of whatever one's personal religion happens to be. Someone wise once wrote, "To the Greek, I became as the Greek."

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I like the garden better than the shrine proper but both are a good spot for a photo op. Why not go there? I don't understand why people are getting their noses out of joint.

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"...why people are getting their noses out of joint."

Because of WWII and the millions who died in the name of this religion.

There are other faiths in this land. Politics and religion should be kept apart. It would be nice if she went to the church of her denomination in her private time in Japan. The Christian message is really the hope for the world. But this should not be done in her role as Secretary of State. The Christian values should be present though.

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realist - absolutely and totally agree.

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Realist--the figure is 8 million, not 800 million. And also, "gods" is a poor translation of "kami." I wonder if you think 8 million would be an over-estimation of the number of angels? I try to see into the heart of any religion, and know that in every case there will be examples of where the religion went terribly wrong, but that does not mean that all of its manifestations are therefore bad.

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American women have good fashion taste! A+ for Hillary's elegance!

I agree that American women have good fashion sense, That's why Hillary stands out always looking like she's modelling for circus tents.

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um, why all the religious talk? Who cares that she visited the Shrine. WW2 had nothing to do with religion. If you really want to ponder things, why has Germany, Japan and Brazil shared decades of relationship - even before WW2, WW1, etc.... Wasn't Hitler Pro White? Then why hold close ties with Brazilians and Japanese? That Triangle has existed and will continue to move forward --- Ponder that! Religion? If Clinton Christian? US Christian? If that's the case - change the name cuz neither of "Christ Like."

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Clueless at the Meiji Shrine.

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OhioDonna - "Clueless at the Meiji Shrine"

Explain!

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I think she should have gone to Yasukuni. Ha haaaa! That would have stirred up some poo, eh?

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Explain: She is wearing an outfit that causes her to stick out like a sore thumb. But on the other hand I am not sure what her real motives were for the visit. She is one shrewd lady and knows how to play the press.

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