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Data show twisters form over Kanto in September

| Sep 5, 2013

Data show twisters form over Kanto in September

by Jun Hongo

Damage to people and property by tornadoes made headlines over the past week, with the latest in Tochigi Prefecture injuring three people while destroying houses and other buildings. Here are some questions and answers regarding twisters: Are twisters common in Japan? About 17 were ...

Clearing way for wider military role

| Aug 19, 2013

Clearing way for wider military role

by Mizuho Aoki

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is poised to achieve his long-held goal of reinterpreting Article 9 of the Constitution to allow Japan to exercise its right to engage in collective self-defense under the U.N. Charter. In February, Abe reconvened an advisory panel of security experts ...

Defense firms pushing to boost role

| Aug 12, 2013

Defense firms pushing to boost role

by Eric Johnston

With pressure mounting from U.S. defense officials and the powerful Keidanren business group on the government to relax arms export restrictions, the military-industrial lobbies in Washington and Tokyo hope the future bilateral security relationship will incorporate their interests more robustly. At the same time, ...

| Aug 5, 2013

U.S.-style class action? Unlikely for Tepco suits

by Tomohiro Osaki

About 1,700 people from various prefectures filed four separate lawsuits against Tokyo Electric Power Co. and the government last March 11, exactly two years after the start of the Fukushima nuclear disaster. The crisis, which is a long way from ending, has devastated local ...

Grip on Diet leaves no scapegoats for LDP

| Jul 29, 2013

Grip on Diet leaves no scapegoats for LDP

by Reiji Yoshida

The Liberal Democratic Party won a landslide victory in the July 21 Upper House election and regained control of both chambers of the Diet, ending years in which the legislature was effectively divided and bills were held hostage. In recent years, whatever force was ...

Nintendo brought arcade games into homes 30 years ago

| Jul 15, 2013

Nintendo brought arcade games into homes 30 years ago

by Jun Hongo

On July 15, 1983, Kyoto-based Nintendo Co. launched the Family Computer video game console, or “Famicom.” Priced at ¥14,800, more than 63 million units of the iconic white, red and gold machine were sold worldwide, laying the foundations for today’s gaming industry. Here are ...

As new UNESCO site, Fuji set to beckon to masses

| Jul 8, 2013

As new UNESCO site, Fuji set to beckon to masses

by Masaaki Kameda

The official climbing season for Mount Fuji kicked off July 1 amid added fanfare over the iconic peak’s inclusion as a UNESCO World Heritage cultural site in late June. Straddling Yamanashi and Shizuoka prefectures, Japan’s highest peak, at 3,776 meters, has seen a surge ...