National Topics

| Nov 16, 2013

Japan's 'world of peace' sold out to mammon

by Michael Hoffman

Suppose Confucianism had prevailed? We’d have “rites and music” instead of law; filial piety instead of democracy and free-market capitalism. The ruler would radiate paternal benevolence and we, his subject-children, would respond with respect and obedience. Would we be worse off? Most people would ...

Okinawa deadline sought in 1957

Oct 30, 2013

Okinawa deadline sought in 1957

Prime Minister Nobusuke Kishi pressed U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower at a summit in 1957 to consider setting a deadline for returning Okinawa, saying the Japanese public might otherwise become nervous about U.S. intentions, according to diplomatic records declassified Wednesday. The talks, 15 years ...

Spent fuel good enough for bomb, U.S. told Japan in 1977

Oct 30, 2013

Spent fuel good enough for bomb, U.S. told Japan in 1977

The United States believed in 1977 that nuclear weapons could be produced from plutonium extracted from spent nuclear fuel at Japan’s light water reactors and conveyed its view to Tokyo, according to Japanese diplomatic records declassified Wednesday. A U.S. arms control official told a ...

Oct 30, 2013

Ford's visit to China in 1975 caused much worry in Tokyo

Prime Minister Takeo Miki conveyed concerns over U.S. President Gerald R. Ford’s planned visit to China in late 1975 during a meeting the month before, indicating worry that Washington was developing a closer relationship with Beijing, according to documents declassified Wednesday. “We hope there ...

| Oct 26, 2013

Oh, to be blissfully unfree in Nippon's isles . . .

by Michael Hoffman

“Freedom.” “Liberty.” Ringing words. Better than any other, they define modern times. They sparked three early-modern revolutions — England’s “Glorious Revolution” (1688), the American Revolution of 1776-83, and the French Revolution beginning around 1789. Japan then was a “closed country” — had been since ...

Scholar aims to unravel Japanese remains issue

Oct 10, 2013

Scholar aims to unravel Japanese remains issue

by Daisuke Nakai

Naoki Mizuno, a Kyoto University professor, is hoping to shed light on the Japanese who died in the northern part of the Korean Peninsula around the end of World War II and remain buried there. “The issue is a result of Japan’s (colonial rule ...