Seoul has been transformed by the Covid-19 coronavirus, or, more accurately, by the social response it has engendered. Close to 90% of the Koreans on the street now wearing white masks, and other visible changes are manifest.
The UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) advised the government of Japan to take a more active stance towards the Comfort Women matter. The UN report was published on August 30, and it called for a “lasting solution” based on “a victim-centered approach.”
A roundup of the most significant news stories from Japan reported on March 13, 2018.
A roundup of the most significant news stories from Japan reported on January 1, 2018.
A roundup of the most significant news stories from Japan reported on December 27, 2017.
The decision by the Abe government to return Ambassador Yasumasa Nagamine to Seoul and Consul-General Yasuhiro Morimoto to Busan represents a total failure of Japan’s current approach to diplomatic relations with its closest neighbor, South Korea.
Since we are based in Tokyo and not in Washington DC, we may not be the best source available for understanding US government policy, even its policy toward Japan and Asia. Nevertheless, it’s hard not to notice that the Obama administration is taking an unexpectedly cool posture toward Shinzo Abe and his band, and that this is having a major political effect here as well. It is also obvious that the Obama policy toward Japan is radically different than what US policy was a decade ago under George W. Bush.