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Home » Archives » August 2006 » Veteran Japanese Politician Warns of Rising Nationalism

Veteran Japanese Politician Warns of Rising Nationalism

Wednesday, August 30, 2006 Posted: 12:43 PM JST

(AFP) - A veteran Japanese politician whose home was torched in a suspected arson attack by a right-wing activist said he feared the nation was leaning towards a more aggressive form of nationalism. "One type of nationalism in Japan has an antagonistic or reactionary nature, which tends to be hostile towards neighboring nations," said Koichi Kato. "Many Japanese tend to lean towards this nationalism. This is a very dangerous situation," he told reporters at the Foreign Correspondents' Club of Japan.

The 67-year-old former secretary general of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party is an outspoken critic of Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's visits to a war shrine honoring about 2.5 million war dead including top war criminals. His house burned down hours after Koizumi's most recent visit to the Yasukuni Shrine on the emotionally charged August 15 anniversary of Japan's surrender in World War II. Read article

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1 comments so far post your own

1 | At 10:20am on Aug 31 2006, Kjeld Duits wrote:
Arrested arsonist says Kato's remarks over Yasukuni unacceptable

(Kyodo) _ A member of a right-wing group arrested for alleged arson at the house of a parent of veteran lawmaker Koichi Kato has told investigators he could not accept Kato's remarks over the war-related Yasukuni Shrine, investigative sources said Wednesday.
Masahiro Horigome, 65, is believed to have trespassed into the two-story home in Tsuruoka, Yamagata Prefecture, on Aug. 15, the 61st anniversary of the end of World War II, and set fire to the first floor of the house, which burned down.

Kato, a House of Representatives member of the Liberal Democratic Party, has been critical of Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's visits to the Shinto shrine, which honors Class-A Japanese war criminals along with the war dead. http://asia.news.yahoo.com/060830/kyodo/d8jqp4c80.html
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The now legendary Sir Ernest Mason Satow (1843-1929) was a member of the British legation in Tokyo for twenty-one years. This classic book is based on the author's detailed diary, personal encounters, and keen memory. In it, Satow records the history of the critical years of social and political upheaval that accompanied Japan's first encounters with the West around the time of the Meiji Restoration. Fascinating.
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