Alex K.T. Martin


Alex K.T. Martin
Alex K.T. Martin is a Tokyo-based journalist and senior writer at The Japan Times, primarily focusing on feature stories. Previously he was a Tokyo correspondent for The Wall Street Journal.
May 13, 2010
Parties pin poll hopes on sports star power
The summer Upper House election is looking increasingly like an athletic competition as both ruling and opposition parties field sports stars to woo independent voters.
May 11, 2010
DPJ to field judo star Tani as candidate
The ruling Democratic Party of Japan announced Monday it will field women's judo superstar Ryoko Tani for the proportional representation segment of the summer Upper House election.
Apr 29, 2010
Hatoyama's plan to move marines to Tokunoshima gets icy reception
Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama on Wednesday revealed his plan to move as many as 1,000 of the 2,500 U.S. Marines based at the Futenma air station in Okinawa to Tokunoshima Island in Kagoshima Prefecture during a meeting with former Lower House member Torao Tokuda, a native of Tokunoshima, Tokuda's son...
Apr 28, 2010
Inquest: Ozawa merits indictment
The embattled Democratic Party of Japan-led government received another blow Tuesday when an inquest panel decided that DPJ Secretary General Ichiro Ozawa merits indictment over his funding management body's alleged false reporting of political donations from 2004 to 2007.
Apr 24, 2010
Masuzoe launches new party
Former health minister Yoichi Masuzoe and five other Diet lawmakers formed a new political party Friday, following three other new minor parties that hope to give voters an alternative choice in the Upper House election his summer.
Apr 24, 2010
Small parties looking for bigger say
With the approach of the summer Upper House election, several new parties are vying for voters disenchanted with the Democratic Party of Japan, which swept to power last year on the promise of change but became mired in money scandals and accusations of poor leadership.
Apr 24, 2010
Hatoyama's grip weakens but DPJ short of alternatives
Apr 18, 2010
Foreigner suffrage opponents rally
Conservative intellectuals and key executives from five political parties were among the thousands who gathered in Tokyo on Saturday to rally against granting foreign residents voting rights for local elections.
Apr 15, 2010
Reversal on deposit limit a major gamble for DPJ
The Cabinet's recent decision to accept a plan to double the ceiling on postal savings accounts to ¥20 million, as proposed by postal reform minister Shizuka Kamei, marks a drastic policy shift for the Democratic Party of Japan, which in the past argued the maximum should be halved from the current...
Apr 11, 2010
LDP defectors launch new political party
Former trade minister Takeo Hiranuma and four other ex-Liberal Democratic Party lawmakers launched a new party Saturday in a bid to create a viable alternative to the dominant players ahead of this summer's Upper House election.
Apr 3, 2010
Wakabayashi exits Diet due to illicit votes
Former farm minister Masatoshi Wakabayashi resigned from the Diet Friday after coming under fire for manipulating a parliamentary vote earlier in the week.
Mar 27, 2010
Child-allowance bill clears Diet
The bill to provide monthly allowances to families raising children cleared the Upper House on Friday, enabling the ruling Democratic Party of Japan to deliver on a key promise made in last year's election campaign.
Mar 16, 2010
Half-year on, Hatoyama struggling
It's been six months since Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama and his Cabinet strutted the red-carpet for an inaugural photo session, staging a perfect Hollywood ending to a summer blockbuster election that knocked the Liberal Democratic Party out of almost 50 years of unbroken rule.
Mar 16, 2010
Hatoyama's brother quits 'ousted' LDP
Former internal affairs minister Kunio Hatoyama, whose older brother, Yukio, is the prime minister, served notice Monday that he was exiting the Liberal Democratic Party, saying he was ready to form a new force.
Mar 4, 2010
Ishiba laments LDP's divisions
The Liberal Democratic Party should focus on creating clear policies and restructuring and end its internal bickering, LDP Policy Research Council Chairman Shigeru Ishiba said Wednesday.
Mar 3, 2010
Decks cleared, DPJ focuses on poll
With Tuesday's Lower House passage of the fiscal 2010 budget securing the way for its enactment by the end of March, the ruling Democratic Party of Japan will now focus on passing as many key policies as it can to bring visible results to voters before the summer Upper House election.
Japan Times
Mar 2, 2010
All movies subject to rating, even cuts
Moviegoers in Japan may have noticed that either during the opening or ending credits of a feature film, a mark appears on the screen bearing two kanji enclosed in a circle.
Feb 18, 2010
Hatoyama spars with opposition
Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, during his first one-on-one debate against opposition party leaders, was forced Wednesday to fend off criticism over the money scandals dogging his administration.
Feb 11, 2010
LDP struggling in vain to rebuild
Taking the podium last month at the Liberal Democratic Party's first convention since its fall from power at the hands of voters last summer, Katsuya Nomura, former manager of the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles baseball team, had a few words of advice for the LDP.
Feb 9, 2010
Hatoyama says Ozawa can stay
Democratic Party of Japan kingpin Ichiro Ozawa on Monday was given the go sign to remain as the party's secretary general by Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama despite mounting public calls that he step down over his fund management body's involvement in a shady Tokyo land purchase.


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