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Hi Blog. Check this out:
NATIONAL / MEDIA| BIG IN JAPAN
Motley crew of foreigners backing Japan’s revisionists basks in media glare
BY MARK SCHREIBER
THE JAPAN TIMES MAR 22, 2014, Courtesy of the author
In the war of words — particularly with South Korea and China — over World War II-era issues that has intensified over the past 18 months, foreigners — both Westerners and Asians — have also waded into the fray. And some have even sided with revisionist positions, raising questions over the Japanese military’s alleged recruitment of sex slaves (“comfort women”) and other contentious wartime topics.
For these individuals, preaching to the Japanese choir does appear to have its rewards. At a gathering in Tokyo last autumn, veteran British journalist Henry Scott Stokes commemorated the 70th anniversary of the showpiece meeting of the Greater East Asian Co-prosperity Sphere, Japan’s short-lived effort to align Asians against European colonial powers.
“Japan is a country of rising sun,” he told his audience. “Joining hands together with the fellow Asian people who desire truly Free Asia, I sincerely hope that Japan will play a vital role for realizing democratic Asian unity.”
Soon thereafter, Shodensha published Scott-Stokes’ book “Eikokujin Kisha ga Mita Rengokoku Sensho Shikan no Kyomo” (“Falsehoods of the Allied Nations’ Victorious View of History, as Seen by a British Journalist”). The book, whose third chapter echoes the speech in its description of Japan as “Asia’s light of hope,” has gone through 11 printings and sales have shot past 80,000. Last week it was rated Amazon Japan’s 32nd best-selling title…
COMMENT: In light of the recent Nazi Swastika flags appearing in right-wing marches, it’s pretty wrong-headed for anyone who wants to keep a good reputation to publicly align with people like these. But it’s within character. I’ve heard plenty of pretty unflattering things about Mr. Scott-Stokes through the grapevine over the years. But another NJ bozo mentioned in the article as being in the pocket of Japan’s revisionist right is Tony Marano, a YouTube Vlogger (a sample video of his is up at the JT site; follow above link), who has in the past ignorantly commented on the “Japanese Only” signs issue — by blaming NJ (i.e., the “ugly Americans”) for the signs’ existence. Particularly one “liberal” foreigner (guess who; and I’m not a foreigner) who sues “them” and “messes up their legal system“:
I wonder if Marano will ever get over his ignorance by actually doing any reading up on the issue. Probably not. Critics of his ilk rarely do — it makes the maintenance of their world view that much simpler. And, clearly, as the JT article establishes, more profitable. ARUDOU, Debito
UPDATE APRIL 1 (No, this isn’t an April Fool’s prank): Marano gets a regular column with tabloid weekly Asahi Geino. Now all he has to do is spout off, and it gets translated into a language and culture he doesn’t understand. I love how they try to directly translate his “god bless” at the end of the article. Marano has no idea what he’s getting himself into.
UPDATE APRIL 2: Henry Scott-Stokes, mentioned in the JT article above, also admits that he can’t even read his own revisionist book, let alone write it:
Oddly, perhaps, he admits to not knowing exactly what’s between the pages of the book that carries his name – he says he reads little Japanese and an English translation has yet to be produced. It was dictated over hundreds of hours to another FCCJ member, Hiroyuki Fujita, then brought to publication by Tony Kase, an old friend of Henry’s with connections to the LDP. “Tony Kase had the most to do with this,” he explains, but adds: “I have to accept responsibility for it since it is in my name.”
From “The Revenge of History”, FCCJ’s Number 1 Shimbun, April 1, 2014
So like Marano, Scott-Stokes has no idea how he’s being rendered in Japanese. Seems like for some, Japanese language fluency and apologist/revisionist stances are inversely proportional.
UPDATE APRIL 3: Now a second Marano column has appeared in daily tabloid Yuukan Fuji, this one dated April 4 and apparently out every Thursday…
UPDATE APRIL 6: Debito.org Reader Don MacLaren responds to Marano’s accusation that litigious NJ are in Japan “messing up their legal system”. According to MacLaren, despite numerous attempts on numerous fora, Marano has not responded to him publicly. MacLaren’s video, then his comments accompanying his video, follow:
Published on Apr 6, 2014
Don MacLaren: Mr. Tony Marano has published numerous videos on Japan, many of them sympathetic to the right wing element in Japan, which believes Japan’s actions in World War II were noble. He also posted a video called, “No foreigners allowed” signs in Japan,” concerning non-Japanese (people’s) feelings about this discrimination (regarding these signs, posted in front of Japanese business establishments) and a lawsuit that was initiated over this discrimination.
Mr. Marano suggests Americans are excessively litigous, while the Japanese are not. I take exception to this as I was a defendant in a frivolous lawsuit in Japan brought on by my visa sponsor and employer. I felt I had no choice but to countersue (even though I couldn’t afford a lawyer at first). After almost a year and a half of litigation, I was awarded everything I wanted. I resigned my position with the company and left Japan. Please read the link below to read more about my time in Japan’s courts:
Mr. Marano’s video, “No foreigners allowed” signs in Japan” is here:
The Japan Times Piece I refer to in my video, where I first read about Mr. Marano is here:
Debito Arudou’s blog/website is here:
The discussion on Mr. Arudou’s blog/website on Mr. Marano (and non-Japanese who support Japan’s right-wing element) is here:
Thank you for tuning in. Please feel free to comment/criticize in a civil, reasoned way in the “comments” section of this video. Sincerely, Don MacLaren
Longer version of MacLaren’s video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GCvrAN3uf08
UPDATE APRIL 14, 2014:
The pandering columns keep proliferating. Now Scott-Stokes has a regular column in Yuukan Fuji (bylined “Wake Up, Japan”, this inaugural one dated April 15, 2014) where he calls Korean issues with Wartime Sexual Slavery “nonsense” and the Kouno Statement on it as “the worst” (sai-aku).