the_sicilian comments

Posted in: Debate on relaxing mask requirement starting in Japan See in context

At a press conference on April 27, Nakagawa repeated his view that people should continue to wear masks as long as the fear of infection from COVID-19 remains.

Given all the fear mongering in Japan over this, it might take 10 years to open up the country, let alone reducing or eliminating useless mask wearing.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Tokyo reports 3,161 new coronavirus cases; nationwide tally 26,865 See in context

The number of cases is not that relevant. Hospitalizations with serious conditions and deaths are what is important. Simply having it may not cause harm, but because the deaths and seriously infected are really slowing dowmn, it's not something the media can play up.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Posted in: Ukrainians plead for Mariupol rescue; Russian advance crawls See in context

Russian state media outlets reported Saturday that 25 civilians had been evacuated from the Azovstal steelworks, though there was no confirmation from U.N. or Ukrainian officials.

More like civilians were kidnapped and forced into Russia. This is not going to turn out well for Russia.

-2 ( +6 / -8 )

Posted in: Chinese navy ship enters Japan waters near Kagoshima Pref islands See in context

So the article says "territorial waters". This could mean an EEZ intrusion or the 12 nautical miles of the coast rule. If the later, they need a real shadow, like 7th Fleet.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: CNN's streaming service shutting down a month after launch See in context

As noted, this was doomed to fail. You can get very biased news for free. Why pay?

6 ( +11 / -5 )

Posted in: Australian leader warns of resurgence in asylum seekers if opposition wins election See in context

So the same people that are all for "asylum seekers" flooding a country do not want it to happen to Japan. I think Australia is right to not want these economic migrants. Countries have borders for a reason.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: Survey reveals that many young people in Japan are experiencing loneliness and isolation See in context

Having lived in Okinawa for almost 10 years, I found the people generally more sociable and accepting of those that are not Okinawan. Had many friends while there. I wonder if it's like this in Hokkaido?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Tokyo reports 3,479 new coronavirus cases; nationwide tally 24,258 See in context

With the lowering of cases (and more importantly serious cases and deaths), Japan could slowly open up for tourism. Do it with the restrictions in place, and countries that are deemed safe. China would just have to wait.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Posted in: Gov't welcomes Ukraine evacuees with eye on int'l recognition, election See in context

Japan will do what it sees best for it's population. For all of you crying racism, how would you react if China was at war an 1,000,000 came to Japan wanting asylum? Would you be all welcoming as you are with Middle Eastern people? I bet not.

Ukranians do not want to leave their country, and those that have want to go back. They will rebuild. If not, they assimilate, but that will not be a large number.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Posted in: What is the new COVID-19 variant BA.2? See in context

And another strain... Run for the hills, mask up, don't leave your home..... Ugh.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Posted in: China reports first COVID-19 deaths in more than a year See in context

Coulda beenMar. 19 02:52 pm JST

You are assuming that the CCP are truthful.

Fixed.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Russian airstrike escalates offensive in western Ukraine near Poland border See in context

So Putin is telling his people he must do this because there are Nazi's in Ukraine and they must be stopped. What other party calls their opposition Nazi's and wants them gone? Brown shirts?

I think Putin pulling the nuclear card scared NATO and the US into not getting directly involved. I fee most of Europe would have put troops / air support into play for this but now it's nuclear holocaust they are afraid of.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Posted in: Japan airs strong concern about China's military buildup See in context

I think having a US presence in the area is good for Taiwan and Japan. If there wasn't a US military force, then Taiwan would have already been captured, along with the whole Okinawan island chain.

And before you disparage this idea, look here:

https://www.dw.com/en/japan-angered-by-chinas-claim-to-all-of-okinawa/a-16803117

https://www.scmp.com/week-asia/politics/article/3127810/us-analyst-claims-china-backing-okinawa-independence-movement

-7 ( +2 / -9 )

Posted in: Japan to release 7.5 mil barrels of reserve oil See in context

So if Japan releases from their reserves, but 90% is purchased from the Middle East, this is only hedging against an OPEC rise, not a lack of Russian imports, no?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: MSDF member arrested over sexual assault of teenage girl See in context

The good news is she was not injured in the attack. Hopefully this guys spends a lot of time in jail.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Posted in: Europe welcomes Ukrainian refugees — others, not so much See in context

Having lived in Germany during 2015 (was there 2011 - 2016), there is a stark difference between then with the muslim population and the Ukrainian's. The Ukrainian's eventually want to go back to their country. And if they don't, they'll assimilate like they should. Learn the local language and become productive in the society.

In 2015, the people coming in wanted the hand outs, got them. Got shelter, but were not trying to learn the language. Refuse to follow German customs, reproduced ad mad rates (see Malmo Sweden for the end result of this). Even the German's are getting tired of the issues these "refugees" have caused.

Unless you have seen this you really don't understand it. for most it's just a talking point. For me, it was horrible seeing bus stops get moved because of the men staring at the school children in the town. It was not a good thing for crime to go up. Exponentially. And not wanting to be in a city fussganger (pedestrian) zone after dark. I was glad to leave when I did. Germany changed a lot. And not for the better.

3 ( +8 / -5 )

Posted in: Cargo ship owned by Japanese firm hit by missile off Ukraine coast See in context

This is a good reason to stay out of the Black Sea

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Y2iVHUMZhg

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan seeks to further ease border controls as COVID 6th wave wanes See in context

I did a PCR test on 31 December, with a 2 January departure to Haneda. The problem was the test cost $299 to get a same day result (needed that because of the holidays). And did the 15 days of quarantine in Japan before going to Okinawa. The only positive of the quarantine was being able to play golf twice.

A three day quarantine is not horrible.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Posted in: Kishida announces more sanctions against Russia See in context

The problem with any type of "boots on the ground" solution is it will escalate. Then there are the nuclear weapons that Russia would use if they start taking horrific losses. This is why no one wants to hvae NATO just roll in right now.

Personally, I think the only thing Putin understands is brute force. And he knew with a weakened US president he would have zero issues. Now, if Nordstream 2 had been disapproved earlier, then we might not be in this pickle.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Posted in: Kishida says Japan will consider easing COVID border controls See in context

"The government has also faced criticism over its failure to keep Omicron out of U.S. military bases, where Japan has no jurisdiction. American troops fly directly into the country without observing Japanese quarantine requirements and they were not tested for weeks, until Tokyo asked them to."

This is a half truth. There is a portion of the active duty force that comes in that way, but more come in commercially, and observe the quarantine as directed. I wish someone with editorial common sense would get this right. USFJ (US Forces Japan) puts out a daily COVID tracker and they can see the case loads among the US military.

And after spending January in Japan, all I can say is the measures they are taking are mostly for show. Multiple times, I saw Japanese not wearing masks correctly, no distancing, just getting on with life. Oh, and wearing masks universally, even walking alone outside, is stupid. It does nothing, prevents nothing, and is not based in science.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Posted in: No. of hotel guests in Japan hits record low for 2nd straight year in 2021 See in context

I just spent two plus weeks in Okinawa, in the area of Chatan. "American Village" is a fairly large tourist spot, with large hotels, food, and shopping complexes plus it's next to the spring training site for the Chunichi Dragons baseball team. The place was a veritable ghost town. Normally, they have a large Korean and Chinese tourist population And with the American military restricted to base, these places had spotty Japanese tourists, and that was it. Once the American military personnel were allowed off base, things picked up a bit, but still nowhere near what it normally is.

I did appreciate not being surrounded by a lot of people, but the sheer amount of businesses shut down was horrible to see.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: China envoy warns of conflict if U.S. promotes Taiwan independence See in context

TokyoLivingToday 01:44 pm JST

Don't mess with China..

The decadent and moribund self-proclaimed "champion" of the western civilization won't be a rival against the unstoppable rising power of the great Red Dragon from the East..

History repeats itself..

Time to the rise of eastern civilization..

You will see it with your open mouths..

Western Roman Empire 2.0.

Ha ha ha ha ha.... In China, some parts of the country still use human waste to fertilize crops, and you think they are a great power? The joke I needed today. Thanks.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

Posted in: Voting under way in Nago mayoral race with U.S. base relocation in focus See in context

@Yubaru: Every governor runs on the "get rid of the bases" platform. they get into office, then turn around to the government and say don't cut off the sympathy budget. They all want the money for the bases. And the media (Ryukyu Shimpo and Okinawa Times play up to this rhetoric.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan's COVID-19 foreign entry ban spurs demonstrations in several countries See in context

Japan is not America. No one comes here for equality and social justice. Those who foolishly might can scream and complain all they want but it's not going to change anything. In fact as some have rightly pointed out, such behavior is counterproductive because Japanese will see it as a justification to keep people out. Look at the social turmoil all over America and American cities these days and ask: why would Japan want that?

Funny how the majority of the commenters here are western liberals that are crying about "social justice", COVID restrictions, etc. but because they are already in Japan they are siding with Japan to ensure their little bubble is protected. Just laughable.

And no, not every foreigner is in the "categories" listed by @Foreigner in Tokyo. The point is those that contribute to society should be allowed in. The fact that the Japanese government is doing these severe restrictions not based in science, but ulterior motives should shock no one.

6 ( +10 / -4 )

Posted in: Twitter bans account linked to Iran leader over video threatening Trump See in context

So it took Jack Dorsey stepping down for some common sense to prevail?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: Taliban pledge all girls in schools soon See in context

And they think this will lend credence to their legitimacy?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan to cut 14-day isolation for Omicron close contacts to 10 days See in context

zichiToday 10:12 am JST

Five days with two tests.

So this seems plausible. But my experience has been this:

Test one day before departure (negative)

Tested upon landing at Haneda (negative)

5 days later tested, but no result until 7 days later (negative)

Still stuck on the base but I can walk around on the base only so not as bad as the jails (government "hotels") by the airport.

Now, on the other hand, we had a group fly in of 6 a day later, all had a negative to get on the plane, but one tested positive at Narita after landing (and standing for two hours in a crazy line), then one more tested positive 5 days later.

So maybe it's 3 tests, 5 days. Then day 6, as long as the last two are negative you should be good.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Masks rules get tighter in Europe in winter's COVID-19 wave See in context

How about a big dose of "we have no idea" if masks really do much:

https://www.acsh.org/news/2021/08/18/do-masks-work-15736

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Posted in: As McDonald’s Japan restricts French fry sales, rival boosts its fry sizes by 25%, at no extra cost See in context

YrralToday 07:27 am JST

You can airfry French fries, they still are crisp, potatoes are the core of a Irish stew, I making tortillas soup, with ground chicken, black beans, corn, topped with rice and sour cream Google Tortilla Soup

This. An air fryer, some good fresh potatoes and bit of salt. Perfect. Oh, add about a teaspoon of oil. IT will taste great and very, very low fat.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan to reduce plastic waste from April See in context

So all grocery shopping we do where they give us plastic bags we keep and reuse. Some for food waste, some for just garbage. Also, if you travel they are great for wrapping multiple things like bottles (think yakiniku sauce you can only get in Japan).

And Japan seems to have an affliction for plastic. This is a good thing.

-2 ( +6 / -8 )

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