JJ W comments

Posted in: China’s increasing isolation and its more muscular stance on Taiwan and in the South China Sea have opened doors for Japan to be welcomed as a military power, rather than shunned. The headlines that once fretted about 'remilitiarization' or the 'hawkish' ruling party have been replaced with more level-headed analyses. See in context

The headlines that once fretted about 'remilitiarization' or the 'hawkish' ruling party have been replaced with more level-headed analyses.

I mean, no need to put "remilitarization" or "hawkish" in quotes, those are indisputably accurate descriptions of the LDP's general tendencies.

Along with "revisionist," which wasn't mentioned but makes the prospect of a remilitarized Japan at minimum somewhat more concerning than, say, an inarguably contrite and history-conscious Germany with an army.

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Posted in: Alibaba founder Jack Ma living in Japan after China tech crackdown: Financial Times See in context

Japan should see this as an opportunity to mitigate the labor crisis and population decline.

I dunno, Japan has been demonstrably averse to long-term, mass immigration. Especially if it means importing more people from so-called adversarial Asian countries like South Korea and China.

Pretty sure the authorities would rather develop caretaker robots than deal with "Zainichi trouble" and "cultural infiltration."

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Posted in: Japan's WWII foreign minister asked Holy See to avert war with U.S., documents show See in context

Sounds more like buyer's remorse after Japan bit off more than it could chew by starting wars in China and Southeast Asia.

Still doesn't contradict the mainstream "narrative" (read: historical fact) about how they were unequivocally the aggressors in WW2, but of course the right-wing nationalists and net uyoku will jump on this tidbit of "evidence" to claim that poor Japan did nothing wrong and were only trying to liberate Asia from Western colonialism.

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Posted in: Yamanashi uses toilet paper messages to help suicidal youth See in context

"So pathetic, why am I taking advice from...toilet paper?"

unintended consequence of this idea

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Posted in: Kishida to meet China's Xi in Thailand on Thursday See in context

"Move forward" is just tatemae-speak for "don't mind us while we ignore and deny the past."

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Posted in: Japan's lower house chief says he will explain links to Unification Church See in context

While they're at it they should probably also explain their links to Nippon Kaigi as well.

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Posted in: Abe's state funeral to cost ¥250 million See in context

Curious to see why Nippon Kaigi hasn't jumped at the opportunity to foot the bill. The man was, after all, a consummate patriot in their eyes: he did more to push Japan rightwards towards his (nationalist and revisionist) vision of a "beautiful" country.

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Posted in: Kishida says Japan, South Korea should quickly improve ties See in context

OssanAmericaToday  01:57 pm JST

Historical revisionism in Japan is minimal.

LMAO you can't be serious, your comment itself is ignorant of reality. In both comparative and absolute terms Japan is way up there.

Revisionism in Japan, and apathy to its shameless expression, is baked into national politics and history education and even pop culture on a pervasive scale. In no other first world democratic country would a politician or business leader feel so comfortable in making statements outright denying historical atrocities or denigrating the victims, with the confidence that they will probably not receive meaningful blowback or lose customers for inflammatory remarks that anywhere else would be considered terrible political/business sense.

Even Trump wasn't dumb enough to suggest that slavery and the atomic bombings didn't happen, because thankfully the majority of Americans are historically aware and care enough not to provide shelter for historical revisionists either through explicit support or silence.

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Posted in: Kishida says Japan, South Korea should quickly improve ties See in context

Translation: Kishida is relieved that Japanese politicians and public figures can continue making revisionist statements about Japanese-Korean history without blowback.

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Posted in: Man caught using fake IDs to sneak into matchmaking parties with younger women See in context

For such an old society Japan is unbelievably ageist.

"Ageism" has nothing to do with flouting rules and thinking you're entitled to date women 10+ years younger than you. In fact you could argue he's the one being ageist because he won't date senior citizens lol

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Posted in: Japan political party seeks apology over ex-PM Kan's 'Hitler' tweet See in context

OssanAmericaJan. 25  07:34 pm JST

And who would that be?

Because Nobusuke KIshi was never charged, tried or convicted as a War Criminal.

That doesn't mean he didn't commit war crimes. Otherwise you could inarguably claim that Truman wasn't a war criminal for dropping the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki because he was never charged, tried, or convicted.

On the same topic of war crimes and Kishi, the only reason they let Kishi go was politics, same reason they gave amnesty to the Unit 731 members. MacArthur rehabilitated the right-wing because he wanted postwar Japan to be a bulwark against communism in Asia.

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Posted in: How Japan has been shaped by Shinzo Abe See in context

Gotta say, "conservative grandfather" is a pretty generous euphemism for "war criminal."

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Posted in: Ex-defense chief Nakatani to be Japan's adviser on human rights See in context

If Japan's problems with history education (regarding the whitewashing of events involving China) are a "domestic issue" that China has no say in, then Japan certainly has no say in China's issues concerning HK and Xinjiang which Japan isn't even involved with.

Also their "concern" over HK/Xinjiang isn't humanitarian in the least, it's more of an anti-China "enemy of my enemy is my friend" deal, namely a friend being any region that's at odds with and likely to destabilize a regional competitor like China. It the motivations of these right-wingers were actually altruistic then they would spend more time bringing attention to peoples oppressed by other countries. But even historically that's never really been the case.

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Posted in: Mako's marriage casts shadow on imperial succession debate See in context

What's kind of hilarious about the right wing's insistence on these limitations to preserve the purity and sanctity of the imperial line is that Akihito already admitted years ago that the imperial family has Korean blood, so at this point they're basically just putting a band-aid on a bullet wound.

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Posted in: Wikipedia parent's new CEO wants to make it more global See in context

Absolutely, assuming they're serious about fighting misinformation that's an awesome idea that I've often thought about. Having a larger and more global pool of eyes reading and editing would significantly help in eliminating bias and outright lies in controversial political and historical articles, like in the case of Japanese Wikipedia articles on the Nanking Massacre and other war crimes where the narrative is heavily slanted by conservative and outright revisionist editors.

If you compare the Japanese articles to the English versions the differences in the quality of the referenced sources, level of explanatory detail, and the availability of accompanying photographic and other non-textual media is like night and day.

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Posted in: Survey asks which country’s fashion is the most influential in Japanese street style See in context

HillclimberToday  01:35 pm JST

Define "Korean fashion". There's no difference between it and Japanese fashion (because they just copy whatever is popular in Shinjuku at the time and sell it back to the Japanese)

Yes, and of course. South Korean doesn't influence Japan, it's the other way around. But this article is a solid effort in disguising that fact.

Lol you seem like you have a strong ax to grind when it comes to Japan vs. Korea. That said unless you've been living in a cave for the past few years, I don't think it's controversial at all to say that currently BTS is more popular on a global scale and within Japan than J-pop is popular globally and within Korea.

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Posted in: Chinese athletes complain about lax virus measures at Tokyo Olympics hotel See in context

All the complaining about Chinese athletes complain makes no goddamn sense. It's not like the athletes personally started spreading COVID and encouraged the CCP to cover it up. By that weird logic we should also be criticizing the Chinese doctors who tried to speak out about the virus early on but were silenced.

I swear after one year of staying indoors people have done away with all pretense of civility and decided they don't have the patience or the ability to separate "China" and "the CCP" from "Chinese people."

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Posted in: In bid to recruit new talent Japanese government 'anime-fies' its own agencies and ministries See in context

Interesting choice of a female character for the Ministry of Defense. Maybe to soften the idea of a potentially militarized Japan for its domestic audience perhaps?

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Posted in: Dark city See in context

Without all the lights Tokyo looks like an ordinary city outside of Japan. I have no idea why more places don't do the same thing with neon lights...making the streets brighter makes them safer, more decorative, and more interesting for pedestrians.

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Posted in: U.N. congress on crime prevention opens in Kyoto See in context

WolfpackToday  02:36 am JST

First off it’s not appropriate to suggest that Japan should have a standard of justice to the preferences of other cultures and/or different races. That’s multi-culturalism 101.

"First off it's not appropriate to suggest that China should have a standard of human rights to the preferences of other cultures and/or different races. That's multi-culturalism 101.

"First off it's not appropriate to suggest that the Taliban should have a standard of gender equality to the preferences of other cultures and/or different races. That's multi-culturalism 101."

You can see how easily this cultural relativist logic becomes a double-edged sword. Some concepts like justice, freedom of speech and individual rights are universally understood concepts that transcend culture. Especially if you're a country historically known for importing and adapting foreign cultures, it's a bit dishonest to pick and choose to only emulate foreign technology and economic institutions (the "good parts") while claiming that being pressured to conform to internationally agreed upon legal and social norms is somehow culturally imperialist.

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Posted in: Japanese are very cautious about vaccines because historically there have been issues about potential side effects. The government has been involved in several lawsuits which adds to people's deep caution. See in context

Ma-HuDec. 29  06:53 am JST

historically there have been issues about potential side effects

Which issues are these?


Issues like the Green Cross' involvement in the HIV-tainted blood scandal in the 80s, as well as the Japanese National Institute of Health's involvement in coercing hibakusha in Hiroshima and Nagasaki into cooperating with their unapproved vaccine studies without their consent.

Of course it didn't help that these organizations were largely led and staffed by alumni of biowarfare units like Unit 731 during WW2. So there's a certain irony in that the lack of the Japanese public's trust is itself a side effect of the country's evasion of war responsibility, both to foreign countries as well as to its own domestic victims.

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Posted in: Obama, in memoir, recalls Japan's revolving-door leadership era, bowing to emperor See in context

Interesting how Obama seems to characterize the American Right with the same disdain that he describes the Japanese Left. I guess nationalism and racism in other countries is palatable to establishment liberals as long as they don't result in "aimless" and "sclerotic" departure from US policy objectives.

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Posted in: NHK apologizes over tweets said to fan discrimination against Koreans See in context

Just because there's 'testimony' from the time, does not mean that A) the testimony is true, or that B) editorializing won't insert errors, fantasies, and outright falsehoods in the sake of a desired narrative.

Yeah it seems more like some right-wing historical fiction fantasy where the closet nationalists at NHK got a wee bit too comfortable and said the quiet parts out loud.

Although judging from some of the most popular Tweets and the quantity of Twitter replies from ordinary Japanese people (even those not afraid to show their real faces in their profile pics) who seem to think they did nothing wrong, "quiet parts" might be a bit too generous to describe a pervasive societal sentiment that almost certainly enjoys sympathy among a majority of the population.

On a related note, it's kind of disheartening that Japanese left-wingers and liberals are comparatively silent on social media and not given the same level of support, when their voices are needed the most to push back against these racist narratives.

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Posted in: Moon says he is always ready to talk with Japan over historical disputes See in context

Here we go again with this endless story.

Come on, be a decent human being. How would you feel if someone complained about Japan's "endless story" of commemorating the atomic bombings every year? There were and still are real victims.

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Posted in: Why is anti-Japanese sentiment remaining from the World War II era almost non-existent in countries like Taiwan, the Philippines and Indonesia, unlike in China and South Korea? See in context

Because China and South Korea are no longer weak, poor countries who have to walk on egg shells and beg for financial assistance.

Absolutely, even when China signed the Joint Communique with Japan in '72 they were economically weak, so they couldn't afford to bring up historical grievances and jeopardize any potential economic partnership. Now that China is in a different position, of course, they've become a lot less reserved about pestering Japan about historical issues.

Southeast Asia by no means has forgotten about the horrors of WW2, it's just that often political decisions have to prioritize economic growth and expediency, while important moral questions find themselves taking a back seat by necessity until the right time.

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Posted in: Japan to mark 75th anniversary of World War 2 end in scaled-back ceremony See in context

Abe, who has adopted a less apologetic stance toward the war, pledged last year "never again to repeat the devastation of war" but did not echo the emperor's words of remorse.

That must be a real dilemma for right wingers, to have to deal with the cognitive dissonance of revering the Emperor while at the same time realizing that his more sincere approach of dealing with history might not be ideal for the good of their revisionist narrative.

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Posted in: Japanese university awards first-ever ninja studies degree See in context

C'mon really? Their biggest mistake was revealing that they awarded this degree to begin with!

"First rule of ninja studies..."

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Posted in: Police arrest suspect in Kyoto Animation studio arson attack that killed 36 See in context

I wonder if the stigma associated with discussing mental health issues in Japan played any part in exacerbating the suspect's situation. Did he feel ashamed to ask for help, or did he decide to commit the selfish act anyway in spite of getting the support he needed?

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Posted in: Ex-comfort woman in S Korea criticizes protest rallies against Japan See in context

From the JoongAng Daily:

"Lee declared that she won’t attend the Wednesday demonstration starting next week, although she will never stop demanding an apology from the Japanese government. 'The organizer just exploits the students and takes away their pocket money, while giving them no proper education.'  "

So it seems like her primary concern here is more regarding the lack of financial oversight and questionable methods of recruiting young Koreans, than any fundamental disagreement with the group's long-term goals. Otherwise it would be a complete 180 for a former comfort woman to suddenly change course and give up on what has essentially been her life's purpose.

Unfortunately I expect that the right-wing media in Japan will sensationalize this news to its fullest potential, and use her words to their advantage by delegitimizing the idea of raising awareness for the concerns of wartime abuse victims as nonsensical.

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Posted in: Beijing bans 'uncivilized' behavior to improve public hygiene See in context

Wasn't it Mao who said that manners were "bourgeoisie"? It's crazy how far back the Cultural Revolution set the entire country of China, when you realize they're still reeling from the effects even now.

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