Memory and Reconciliation in the Asia-Pacific


DPJ Victory in Lower House Election: Hopes and Fears of the Asia-Pacific
September 4, 2009, 6:46 pm
Filed under: China, China-Japan, China-Korea, Japan, Japan-Korea, Korea, Yasukuni Shrine

The landslide victory of the DPJ and its junior partners over the LDP-Komei coalition in the recent general election for the Lower House of Parliament has led many to consider the possibility of a positive change in regional relationships between Japan and its neighboring countries.  Since the beginning of the campaign period, Yukio Hatoyama and his fellow DPJ leaders have articulated the importance of developing closer, more amicable relationships with Japan’s Asian neighbors, and Hatoyama has been extremely vocal when addressing issues pertaining to the legacy of historical issues that has consistently tested Japan’s relations with its neighbors.  While these promises for closer ties has left some in neighboring China and S. Korea optimistic toward the incoming administration, across the Pacific there are many who raise the question, “at what cost?”  Hatoyama’s recent Op-Ed in the New York Times entitled, “A New Path for Japan” raised some concerns in the United States of a possible distancing between the US and its ally in the Far East.  While DPJ officials quickly dispelled the idea of Japan moving away from the US, the question remains as to how Japan’s role in the region will (or will not) change with the arrival of the DPJ leadership.

This week’s news brief focuses on the varying hopes and fears of the Asia-Pacific as it witnesses the historic change in leadership within Japan:

A New Path for Japan, The New York Times, Aug. 26, 2009.

Korea Hopes for New Era in Japan Relations, The JoongAng Daily, Sept. 01, 2009.

South Korea Eyes Better Ties with Japan’s Next Leader, ChannelNewsAsia, Aug. 26, 2009.

Likely Japan Leaders to Focus on Asia Ties, Wall Street Journal, Aug. 27, 2009.

Hatoyama Seeks ‘Yukio-Barack’ Rapport, China Ties, Bloomberg, Sept. 1, 2009.

Interest High Among Foreign Media in ‘Historic’ Election, The Japan Times, Sept. 1, 2009.

U.S. May Profit from Better Japan-Asia Ties, Reuters, Sept. 3, 2009.

Sino-Japanese Ties not to be Affected After DPJ Assumes Reins of Government, SINA, Aug. 31, 2009.

DPJ to Further Advance Japan-China Ties: Party Chief, Xinhua, Aug. 11, 2009.

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Weekly Update – August 8

Two articles on South Korea reports Korean movements against Japan on Dokto Islets or Takeshima and the Sea of Japan or East Sea. The Northeast Asian History Foundation organized a scholary forum on Dokto Issue.

 Korean Times provides a positive commentary on Chinese Director Li Ying’s documentary film, ‘Yasukuni’, which was recently released in Korea.

A Mainichi Shimbun journalist writes on her interaction with hibakusha and introduces a second generation hibakusha Hiromi Peterson, a Japanese who married to an American in Hawaii. She produced a textbook that recounts her family’s experiences after the atomic bomb in Hiroshima. The textbook is now used across Hiroshima.

Jay Taylor’s new book titled “The Generalissimo: Chiang Kai-Shek and the Struggle for Modern China” sheds a new light on Chiang Kai-shek’s life highlighting his talent as a strategist and rebutting some of popular conceptions such as his reluctance to exhaust his army in battles against the Japanese Army, utilizing new materials.

South Koreans want water called East Sea, UPI August 6, 2009

‘Japan’s Claim to Dokdo Threatens Peace in N-E Asia’, Korea Times, August 6, 2009

‘Yasukuni’ Cuts Into Spiritual Dimension, Koera Times, August 6, 2009

Serving as a bridge to spread the message of the atomic bombing, Mainichi Shimbun, August 6, 2009

The Generalissimo, Christian Science Monitor, August 6, 2009



Weekly Update – July 10

John Woo will remain in China for his next film on WWII, which takes a theme in the American volunteers recruited to aid the Chinese Air Force prior to the US participation in WWII; Veterans of the Korean War will be special guests during opening ceremonies for the Great Texas Balloon Race this year; Japan received the first Chinese individual tourist after change in its law; Taiwan is ready to receive more investment from China.

John Woo Divebombs Into WWII Again With ‘Flying Tiger Heroes’, MTV Blog, July 6, 2009

Balloon Race honors Korean War veterans, News-Journal.com, July 3, 2009

Taiwan Opens 100 Industries to Chinese Investment (Update2), Bloomberg, June 30, 2009

First individual Chinese tourists visit Japan, AFP, July 8, 2009



Update on North Korean Nuclear Issue
July 10, 2009, 3:59 pm
Filed under: China, Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan, Korea

What’s Driving Pyongyang?, GlobalSecurity.org, July 3, 2009

Allies in Paranoia and Repression, Far Eastern Economic Review, July 3, 2009

Dialogue-First Diplomacy Not Working, CBS, July 8, 2009



Nanjing!Nanjing! – Follow Up 3
July 6, 2009, 6:42 pm
Filed under: China, China-Japan

The articles discuss the Chinese movie titled Nanjing!Nanjing!.

Nanjing Massacre Movie Shows Sympathy for Japanese Army: Review , Bloomberg, June 23, 2009



Rise of China and the World
July 6, 2009, 6:36 pm
Filed under: China

The reports below provide opposing views on China’s rise and its impact on the world.

Welcome to China’s millennium, Guardian, June 23, 2009

Think Again: Asia’s Rise , Foreign Policy, June 22, 2009



Weekly Update – July 1
July 6, 2009, 6:35 pm
Filed under: China, Japan-Korea, Korea

Dong-A Ilbo reports the interview with Hatoyama, the Japanese opposition party leader who visited South Korea. Korea Times delineates the history of Seoul Buses, which were first introduced 60 years ago.

US lodges China censorship complaint, Financial Times, June 21, 2009

Seoul Buses: 60 Years of Ups and Downs, Korea Times, June 24, 2009

[Viewpoint] Sweat from the soul, JoongAng Daily, June 29, 2009

[Viewpoint] Obsession with ideology, JoongAng Daily, June 30, 2009

History of the Communist Party of China, People’s Daily Online, July 1, 2009

Japan`s Opposition Leader Speaks to Dong-A, Dong-A Ilbo, July 1, 2009