The Covid-19 crisis became a dominating issue for the world, and Japan is no exception. This is a timeline of the events so far.
In comparison to other G7 nations, Japan has been taking a weak approach to the recent coup in Myanmar, led by the country’s Tatmadaw, or military forces. This includes Japan’s refusal to impose sanctions, official statements that have been widely viewed as being too soft, and a reference to the Myanmar military’s top diplomat as being the “foreign minister.”
Even after political leadership has finally shed Shinzo Abe, the Japanese government has found new ways to discriminate against foreign residents of Japan.
The coronavirus continues to rampage through society, but 2021 has begun. Unnoticed by some, several coronavirus crisis villages (sodan mura) sprang up around Japan’s capital city in recent weeks. The pandemic has devastated people’s livelihoods as well as public health.
The time has come for foreign residents in Japan to rid themselves of self-marginalizing patterns of thought and to begin to embrace the notion that they live in Japan, work to the benefit of this country, pay their taxes, and thus have a claim on a certain set of rights.
The labor union I represent, Tozen Union, this year marked its decennial anniversary–ten years since its founding on April 25, 2010.
Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga’s announcement that the Japanese nation will go net zero in terms of carbon emissions by 2050 has been widely welcomed as a step in the right direction by environmentalists and others focused on the growing threat of climate change.
Greenpeace has sounded an alarm over the Suga government’s plan to release stored water from the ill-fated Fukushima nuclear plant into the Pacific Ocean, releasing a new report warning about the presence of carbon-14, which the group says “has the potential to damage human DNA.”
Nearly a decade after the 2011 Fukushima disaster, the government has decided to release more than one million tons of treated radioactive water, currently being stored at the nuclear plant, into the Pacific Ocean, despite fierce opposition from fishermen and some environmentalists.
Throughout its nearly eight years in power, the Abe administration pressed forward with all its might to build a new US airbase at Henoko, Okinawa.