| Feb 8, 2014

Blast from the past: Lucky Dragon 60 years on

Sixty years ago, on March 1, 1954, a Japanese fishing boat named Lucky Dragon No. 5 was doused by radioactive fallout from a U.S. hydrogen-bomb test, codenamed Castle Bravo, on Bikini Atoll in the Marshall Islands. Although the bomb was over 1,000 times more ...

Bending Adversity: Japan and the Art of Survival

Feb 1, 2014

Bending Adversity: Japan and the Art of Survival

The title of “Bending Adversity: Japan and the Art of Survival” refers to an old Japanese proverb about making the best of a bad situation or transforming crisis into opportunity. Japan is no stranger to crisis, or to monumental “bending,” but will the Great ...

| Feb 1, 2014

Can local voices derail the Super Shinzo Express?

Voters in Nago, northern Okinawa Island, threw down the gauntlet on Jan. 19 when they reelected as mayor the incumbent, Susumu Inamine, a staunch opponent of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s plan to relocate the U.S. Marine Corps Air Station Futenma from the congested city ...

'Abe-genda': nuclear export superpower

Jan 25, 2014

'Abe-genda': nuclear export superpower

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is now in New Delhi to celebrate the 65th anniversary of the founding of the Indian Republic. His presence speaks volumes about closer diplomatic, security and economic ties and, at least from Tokyo’s perspective, a common agenda on responding to ...

| Jan 18, 2014

Lexicon for today's Japan: Reading between the lies

Plowing through the news, one is often struck by the proliferation of acronyms, jargon, new names and terms. It can be a baffling experience, so I thought I would provide some explanations, keywords, synonyms, associative notions and interpretations to aid comprehension — even at ...

| Dec 28, 2013

Incredible India and the New Delhi Dissensus

On a recent visit to New Delhi, I met an activist promoting the rights of dalits (untouchables), who quipped, playing off a current national-branding campaign: “India is indeed incredible . . . but only in paradox.” Earlier this month, people power ousted the establishment ...