May 16, 2015

Buraku issues still resonate

It was a pleasure to encounter Stephen Mansfield’s review of my recent book, “Working Skin,” in the May 3 edition of The Japan Times. Buraku issues continue to be of broad public import in contemporary Japan and deserving of more discussion. I wanted to ...

May 9, 2015

U.S. military in Okinawa illegally

The pomp and circumstance that characterized the state dinner given by U.S. President Barack Obama for visiting Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (“State dinner for Abe at White House surprises with haiku, sake and R&B” in the April 30 edition) may camouflage the reality that ...

May 9, 2015

Discrimination is difficult to end

Regarding the May 3 book review “Marginalized in Tokyo’s leatherwork districts,” I was reminded how the word “rawhide” appeared in a TV cowboy drama’s theme song, and how in the Showa late 30s, a friend of mine and I went to a shoemaker near ...

May 2, 2015

The world needs Rall's indignation

Thank you, Japan Times, for publishing Ted Rall (“Proof the U.S. is rotten to the core,” April 28) and thank you, Ted Rall, for your continued righteous indignation about the injustices of this world. The Japan Times seems to be one of the very ...

Apr 18, 2015

Land returns barely reduce base burden

Regarding the April 9 article “U.S. defense chief says new guidelines will ‘transform’ U.S.-Japan alliance”: The stronger Tokyo and Washington say the Japan-U.S. alliance must be, the more viciously Okinawa will have to take the brunt of it all. The central government has repeatedly ...

Apr 11, 2015

Understanding of Vietnam War in U.S. is better

Regarding the April 5 Counterpoint column titled “America’s memory wars and the Vietnam debacle,” in two respects professor Jeff Kingston offers readers an incomplete and dated impression of the current state of American understanding of the Vietnam War. First, a growing body of formidable ...

Apr 11, 2015

Okinawa deserves better from Tokyo

Regarding the April 5 TimeOut story headlined “Okinawa: In the cross hairs of war,” it is a pity that the pigheaded Yamato revisionists from Tokyo will not allow the Okinawan people to remember Japan’s wartime atrocities as they themselves witnessed them. Okinawa should not ...

Apr 11, 2015

Some ideas for better English

The editorial titled “Disappointing levels of English” in the March 29 edition made me sad to know that many high school students have difficulty in learning English, particularly with speaking and writing. And also, this is another shocking reality, that about 60 percent do ...

Apr 11, 2015

Japan must seek reconciliation

As a Japanese who was educated after the war, I quite agree with the “Japan abusing UNESCO” editorial by The Korea Times in the April 7 Global Perspectives column. I hope that the Japanese politicians understand why Koreans and Chinese are angry about Japan. ...

Apr 4, 2015

Fluency requires direct interaction

At a recent conference on teaching English in Singapore (co-sponsored by Japan’s education ministry), I attended some disappointing presentations by teachers from Japan, and wondered how Japanese students could ever hope to communicate in English if these were the researchers selected by Japan’s bureaucratic ...

Mar 21, 2015

Not surrendering was even worse

Regarding the March 16 editorial, “Legacy of the Great Tokyo Air Raid“: Of course, the bombing of Tokyo was terrible. But wasn’t it worse that, following the tragedy, the Japanese authorities did not immediately sue for peace? The Japan Times has run several articles ...

Mar 14, 2015

Wild Watch shined a light on Sunday

I read with interest Mark Brazil’s surprising personal introduction to his Wild Watch column of March 8 titled “Flight of the swan offers natural lesson.” Surprise turned to disappointment when I read that it was the final installment of Brazil’s Wild Watch column in ...