The personal touch shows Abe’s determination to maintain ties with the Philippines as Japan competes with China for business deals. Security ties between the Southeast Asian nation and the U.S. have deteriorated under Duterte, and with China growing increasingly assertive in the region, Abe is seeking to convince his counterpart to stick with Japan and the U.S.
This February, the Crocker Art Museum will present JapanAmerica: Points of Contact, a beautiful and diverse display of nearly 200 works of art and design that have played a role in artistic exchange between the two cultures. Following the “opening” of Japan by the United States Navy in 1853, traveling expositions introduced communities around the world to the exquisite craftsmanship of Japanese objects.
Japanese Representative to Taiwan Mikio Numata yesterday said that he hoped Taipei and Tokyo could take their “best relationship” to the next level, as he unveiled the new doorplate for the Japan-Taiwan Exchange Association, which on Sunday changed its name from the Interchange Association, Japan.
Tetsundo Tanabe was running a kendo dojo in Yokohama when he came up with an idea on how children could avoid the pain of getting smashed over the head with a bamboo sword. His solution was simple: Use softer weapons. [...] Forty-five years after that brainstorm, 400,000 people in 65 countries and regions are playing Tanabe’s invention, called sports “chanbara” (sword fighting), or “spochan” for short.
Nepal and Japan are geographically distant but close in terms of culture, religion, way of life and sentiments. [...] Though diplomatic relations were established between Nepal and Japan only in 1956, a spiritual bond has existed since the introduction of Buddhism in Japan in the sixth century. This year, we are celebrating the diamond jubilee of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Nepal and Japan.
China, which regards itself as one of the world’s oldest civilizations, but one that has been repressed by outsiders, has often made culture a battlefield. It has tussled with its neighbors and rewritten history textbooks. In other instances, soft power skirmishes may be seen as substitutes for hot war. So China’s recent embrace of Japanese movies may be more complicated than audiences falling for the cuteness purveyed by Japan’s cartoon factories.
In the last month of President Barack Obama’s two terms, he is focused on the same foreign country when he began his presidency: Japan. [...] Eight years later, Tuesday, President Obama and Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe stood together at the USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor, to honor the sacrifices of Americans killed during the Japanese attack on U.S. warships 75 years ago.