Jan 8, 2016

National apology doesn't make Japan a victim

I am grateful for your thoughtful and careful editorial, “The ‘comfort women’ agreement,” in the Jan. 1 edition. As a German citizen living in South Korea and always happy to visit your friendly country, I feel pain in my heart over the historically rooted ...

Jan 8, 2016

Thai government on road to reform

Regarding the opinion piece by Pavin Chachavalpongpun in the Dec. 21 edition titled “Thailand in 2015: a year of spinning its wheels,” I wish to make the following clarifications: The current government is administrating the country during a crucial transition. As the prime minister ...

Jan 8, 2016

Bring back best 'Kohaku' features

Regarding the story “Kohaku music show ratings dive to new low” in the Jan. 4 edition, it is really not at all surprising that the viewer ratings are falling. In recent years, certain changes have been made in the staging which have been having ...

Jan 2, 2016

Remembering St. Luis Ibaraki

The Living Past column titled “Japan’s ‘Christian century’ failed to blossom” in the Dec. 20 edition made me ponder one aspect of our history in Japan. The writer of the article says that for the Japanese “… there is no ‘beyond’ (transcending man and ...

Dec 26, 2015

Learning from past best way to move forward

Criticism is always fair game. When it borders on make-believe it is worth correcting. In his Dec. 20 letter to the editor regarding the article “50 Japanese scholars fire back in McGraw-Hill sex slave row” in the Dec. 12 issue, Jason Morgan’s intentionally misreads ...

Dec 26, 2015

In the end, refugee photo doesn't lie

The caption below the photo accompanying the Dec. 4 article “In unexpected twist, Assad ally may become Lebanon’s next president,” reads, “A Syrian refugee stands behind a door at a makeshift settlement. . . .” Looking closely at the picture I got the sudden ...

Dec 26, 2015

Overly opaque education funding

Regarding the editorial headlined “Japan’s woeful school funding” in the Dec. 20 edition, while the proportion of the finances spent on Japanese education is the second-lowest of all advanced countries in the world, an audit of the education ministry’s self-awarded funding is likely much ...

Dec 18, 2015

U.S. textbook defender lacks an open mind

The article “50 Japanese scholars fire back in McGraw-Hill sex slave row” in the Dec. 12 issue about professor Eiji Yamashita’s well-worded and eminently reasonable rebuttal to the American academics’ year-long histrionics over the “comfort women” makes a nice capstone to this disheartening affair. ...

Dec 18, 2015

Santa should be more inclusive

Regarding the 20 Questions column in the Dec. 13 issue titled “Pursue what you love … be a Santa if you want,” it was interesting to read that Santa Paradise Yamamoto recently became the first authorized Santa from Japan. Your fun little interview, however, ...

Dec 18, 2015

The consumption tax needs fixing

If the government is really interested in fiscal health of Japan, a hike in the consumption tax is not the answer. The Japanese economy is based on an enormous amount of waste of citizens’ taxes. The simple solution is to raise the consumption tax. ...

Dec 12, 2015

Education for students via part-time jobs

Regarding the editorial “Labor woes of student workers” in the Dec. 4 edition, I felt so sad to read that “students are given excessive workload and duties — sometimes at pay below legal minimum wage — at their part-time jobs and are unable to ...

Dec 12, 2015

Turkey justified in downing plane

Having read the two articles in the Nov. 27 edition of The Japan Times, namely “With friends like Turkey, who needs enemies?” by Doug Bandow and “Erdogan aims to derail Russia-NATO alliance” by Gwynne Dyer, I could not help but criticize your approach of ...