Questions for the Day

Generating questions should be the goal of more active blogging, practice of academic freedom, and production of scholarship.  So my first question is: Why the hell are all the links below in English?  Every single one. This is a serious problem which I intend to contemplate, and hopefully, to never repeat.  Anyway, please enjoy: What if Wen Jiabao came to the United States and no … Continue reading Questions for the Day

Creating the Glass Man: Hiroshima Anniversary

Today is the 65th anniversary of the American atomic attack on the southern Japanese city of Hiroshima in 1945.  For the first time, the U.S. government is sending a representative to the commemoration ceremony.  Liberation, the left-wing Parisian paper, has a worthwhile photo gallery on the subject: The German press is of course also watching closely.  The Berlin Tagesspiegel carries a long testimony by a … Continue reading Creating the Glass Man: Hiroshima Anniversary

Hiatus//Documentary Smorgasbord//Steven Chu for President in 2016

I’m on the two-day cusp of departing from Taipei for the beautiful work that awaits in Seattle, and am thus taking my annual last-week-of-July blogging vacation.  I would, in the meantime, like to recommend several fascinating sources for your delectation, enjoyment, and edification. Don’t miss: * C-Span’s panel discussions on the origins of the Korean War (particularly the remarks by the guest from London, and … Continue reading Hiatus//Documentary Smorgasbord//Steven Chu for President in 2016

Fearful Symmetry: ‘Book Burning’ in Nanjing, Pyongyang, and Tokyo

I just want to make a brief note of a symmetry that recently crossed my desk on the subject of book looting and burning in and after World War II in East Asia. It arrived as a missive, the type of which I receive every so often from the “Society for the Dissemination of Historical Fact” in Japan, a group of, shall we say, revisionist … Continue reading Fearful Symmetry: ‘Book Burning’ in Nanjing, Pyongyang, and Tokyo

US-Japan 1960 Security Treaty, and the Shadows of History

No one, I mean no one, in the United States is paying any attention whatsoever to a very important story with implications for American relations in East Asia.  As recently revealed by the Japanese government, in spring 1960, the United States — in negotiating with then-PM Kishi Nobusuke, a former Class-A war crimes suspect and inmate of Sugamo Prison until 1948, and no friend to … Continue reading US-Japan 1960 Security Treaty, and the Shadows of History

Notes on Japan

Japan has been rather quiet in the U.S. news of late, but a few things have happened which may be worthy of attention: 1. The secret terms of the 1960 U.S.-Japan Security Treaty have been made public, and their revelation of U.S. transiting nuclear weapons through Japan has led to commentaries like this one from North Korea. 2. The Okinawa issue remains unresolved: 3. Tokyo … Continue reading Notes on Japan

December 7 in Chongqing

This morning I gave one of those lectures I enjoy delivering because it wakes people up and reconnects me with my Sino-Japanese research: a survey of aerial bombing of civilian populations during World War II (1937-1945). In the context of a class already primed for war crimes research studying the Rape of Nanking through the galvanizing lens of Iris Chang, it is important to broaden … Continue reading December 7 in Chongqing

“Obama’s low bow subjected to scrutiny”: Chinese Media

Global Times in Beijing, no friend to Japan, now carries the story of Obama’s low bow to Emperor Akihito, quoting the Washington Times and all.   The story is carried by the same paper in Chinese here.  It took a couple of days, but the Chinese media is now buzzing with yet another theme. Chinese netizens have some very interesting comments here, replete with some … Continue reading “Obama’s low bow subjected to scrutiny”: Chinese Media

Korea Weekend Reads

A new blog appears!  Check out Juchechosunmansei, with an essay on North Korean-Chinese relations and China’s inferiority complex. North Korea asserts that ethnic Koreans in China are boiling with rage at South Korean-U.S. military provocations.  This is a real throwback to Korean War-era rhetoric.  Strangely enough, I can’t seem to find any confirmation of this in the Chinese press. NK Leadership Watch puts forward a … Continue reading Korea Weekend Reads