All posts tagged: Japan

Koreans and Military Training in Japan, 1947-48

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Korean War / US occupation of Japan

Yesterday I spent a couple of hours in a single box at the US National Archives — otherwise known as RG331 (Allied Operational and Occupation HQ), SCAP Government Section, Administrative Division, Purge Miscellaneous File, 1945-51, box 2054, “Administration to Directives [Screened].” This is a box of “screened” purge candidates. It is hugely disorganized, with no real folders, everything mixed in together, but amid the probably 2000 pages there are many single documents of great interest. Without […]

On Heartbreak, and Bix on Hirohito

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Japan / US-Japan relations / War Crimes / World War II

In our culture of oversharing and social media, there is such an excess of verbiage that the words ‘must read’ or ‘essential’ have basically lost their meaning. The same is true for words like ‘heartbreaking’ — if it was really breaking your heart, you wouldn’t be on Twitter. What happens if you don’t read something ‘essential’? Usually, nothing, because the term has been turned into verbal click-bait. Sometimes academics and journalists really ought to turn […]


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East Asian modernity / Environmental Politics in East Asia / history and memory / Huanqiu Shibao / Japan / North Korea-Japan relations / Sino-Japanese Relations / US-Japan relations / World War II

The earthquake and subsequent tsunami that thrashed the northeastern Japanese coast has generated a great deal of thinking from me, not much of it coherent or of use to readers.  Thus the silence.  At some point, I would imagine that some discussion of the following questions would emerge: To what extent have regional responses to the catastrophe intensified transnational goodwill?   Does this forceful reminder of natural catastrophe bring about a less nationalistic, more humanistic, outlook […]

Competing Visions of Japan on the Huanqiu BBS

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Chinese nationalism / Cultural Politics / East Asian modernity / history and memory / Sino-North Korean relations

Huanqiu Shibao’s BBS world isn’t necessarily representative of the upper crust of netizen opinion, but, since, as China Digital Times reminds us, the internet is becoming increasingly Chinese, it behooves us to get any glimpse into the yawning nooks and immense creaking crannies of 爱国网民活动. Today’s foray brings two threads into competition: a long missive on the Japanese assassination of Korean Queen Min in 1894 and then a photo essay on Japanese university students caught […]

Chinese Cyber-Nationalism and Online Identity among Chinese Youth

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China / Chinese nationalism / Cultural Politics / East Asian modernity / Sino-Japanese Relations

China Media Research, a peer-reviewed online journal which is a cooperative venture between Zhejiang University and Michigan State University, carries two excellent and worthwhile articles in its latest issue. Li Mingsheng, a communications scholar at Massey University, lays out an excellent and densely-document account of the netizen response to the Tibet debacle (both the March riots and the Olympic Torch protests) of spring 2008, entitled “Chinese Nationalism in an Unequal Cyber War.”  (Opens as pdf.) […]

Notes on Japan

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North Korea-Japan relations / US-Japan relations

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 isn’t getting want it wants (e.g., concessions on the abduction […]

Asia’s Ahab: North Korea, Japan, and Environmental Geopolitics in NE Asia

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Environmental Politics in East Asia / North Korea-Japan relations

People who fish, who brave the ocean, who create seriographie of fish, who take pictures of fish, who quantify fish populations — all of these people have a special place in my consciousness these days.   The recent wetness in Seattle, along with a return to the cello/axe in a downtown performance backed by giant Jules-Verne style organ pipes, has me thinking watery thoughts. And lo and behold, what should cross the data transom but […]