Imelda Marcos: Still angry after all these years

Apr 23, 2006

Imelda Marcos: Still angry after all these years

The beautiful half of one of the 20th century’s most notorious dictatorships, Imelda Marcos has spent two decades fighting attempts to jail her and trace a reputed fortune of billions. On the 20th anniversary of the revolution that ousted her and Ferdinand Marcos from ...

Musical match for Japan Goliath

| Apr 18, 2006

Musical match for Japan Goliath

Tetsuo Tanaka has been protesting his dismissal from an electronics company for a quarter of a century. Now his struggle, one of the longest one-man campaigns in Japanese history, is to be the subject of a documentary It’s a Friday morning in Takao, west ...

The doomsday doctor

| Mar 21, 2006

The doomsday doctor

Japan is officially shrinking. Last October’s census found 19,000 fewer Japanese than the previous year; the first time, barring the catastrophic year of 1945 that the population has dropped since censuses began in 1920. The peak population figure of 127.75 million may well one ...

Enemy of the state

| Feb 14, 2006

Enemy of the state

Is Toshiyuki Obora a threat to society? The Japanese state certainly seems to think so. The police arrested the 47-year-old elementary school worker and held him in detention for 75 days. “I thought it would never end,” says Obora. After confiscating his computer and ...

Dec 11, 2005

The 'undigested other': Koreans in Japan

Few parents would voluntarily send a son to live in North Korea; Kongsun Yang sent all three of his. In the early 1970s, Yang waved goodbye to his young Osaka-born boys, who later married and started families in Pyongyang. Poor and unhappy, the sons ...

People power

| Nov 1, 2005

People power

After nearly a decade of stalling and prevarication over the replacement of Futenma Air Station in Okinawa, a solution has finally emerged from the dusty halls of power in Kasumigaseki and Washington. Last week, the two governments agreed to relocate Futenma’s chopper base to ...

Building a bridge to forgiveness

Oct 9, 2005

Building a bridge to forgiveness

Takashi Nagase still breaks down when he remembers the young British man he helped torture. “I couldn’t bear his pain,” he says, choking back tears. “He was crying ‘Mother! Mother!’ And I thought: What would she feel if she could see her son like ...

| Sep 20, 2005

Brought to heel

The watchdog role of journalists in Japan is on trial in several cases with enormous implications for freedom of the press here In a summer laden with portentous anniversaries, several important skirmishes between journalists and the people they keep tabs on passed by almost ...