The Asia-Pacific Journal: Japan Focus Newsletter
Newsletter No. 47. 2011  
November 21, 2011  
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In This Issue

We begin today our fundraising appeal to allow us to continue to make Asia-Pacific Journal available to all at no charge. Our target is $10,000 to allow us to continue to expand post-3.11 coverage of Japan and the Asia-Pacific and to operate for the coming year. Please consider a 
donation of $25, $50, or $100. To contribute, click on the above hot link, or go to our home page. Library subscriptions, permitting unlimited duplication of Focus articles, are available at $40/year to institutions. Please contact us about this at our website. You can also support the Journal by buying books through our Amazon account by clicking on a book cover on our home page or in an article. A small payment for any book ordered (not just those listed here) when placing your order is credited to the Journal.

Our home page has two new features. One is a regularly updated guide to the more than 100 articles we have published on the 3.11 earthquake, tsunami and nuclear power meltdown which is transforming Japanese politics and society, and is reshaping issues of nuclear power and energy policy in that nation and globally. Articles are arranged topically. In addition, we have added a guide to some of the most important, and liveliest, online and print sources on 3.11 including blogs and websites. Secondly, the list of articles now indicates all articles available in Japanese translation or original, as well as other languages. Please draw the attention of colleagues and friends to our comprehensive coverage of 3.11.

Many of our most important articles appear in What's hot and they bring a diversity of sources and reports from Ground Zero in Tohoku and Tokyo. "What's hot" presents breaking stories and provides information beyond the headlines, to cast them in broader perspective. What's hot is regularly updated, at times on a daily basis, and we invite you to consult it and contribute to it.

We encourage those who wish continuing coverage of the earthquake and aftermath to follow Fukushima on Twitter and the English and Japanese coverage at the Peace Philosophy Facebook page:


More than eighteen hundred people now follow Focus through Twitter or Facebook and their numbers are growing steadily. Please consider joining them by clicking at the appropriate link on our home page:    


Growing numbers of colleges and universities are subscribing to the journal for use in classes. If you or colleagues wish to incorporate Asia-Pacific Journal articles into courses, please encourage your library to join subscribers on three continents by taking out a subscription to the journal. The rate is $40/year for unlimited access to, and reproduction of, all articles. Please contact your reference librarian and provide us with an e-ddress to contact and send an invoice. Please send the information to

We invite authors, publishers and directors to bring their books, films and events on East Asia and the Pacific to the attention of our readers. See the home page for information about presenting relevant books and films at our site and for examples of authors, publishers and filmmakers who are presenting their work at the Journal. 

Thanks to readers who subscribe or become sustainers of the Journal, and who order books and other items through Amazon via our website. A small portion of the sales of books and any other products purchased when accessing the Amazon site through one of the book logos on our home page go to the Journal at no cost to you.   
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To access our full archive with more than 2,000 articles, and to view the most widely read articles through their titles or via our index, go here. 
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We begin today our fundraising appeal to allow us to continue to make Asia-Pacific Journal available to all at no charge. Our target is $10,000 to allow us to continue to expand post-3.11 coverage of Japan and the Asia-Pacific and to operate for the coming year.  The Asia-Pacific Journal is free and accessible to all. We invite supporters, authors and readers who find the journal useful to join our sustainers by making a small contribution to support technical upgrades, defray technical, mailing and maintenance fees, and help us to expand outreach. As we have expanded our output since the 3.11 earthquake and tsunami, our costs have risen sharply. Recommended support level: $20 ($10 for students and residents of developing countries); $40 for institutions including libraries, research centers, government offices. If you experience difficulty in subscribing, write to us with the error message at 

Satoko Oka Norimatsu, Fukushima and Okinawa - the "Abandoned People," and Civic Empowerment


The people of Fukushima and the people of Okinawa may both be described, as Okinawan peace activist and writer Nishioka Nobuyuki does describe them, as kimin, or "abandoned people." Nuclear power plants in poverty stricken rural areas and US military bases concentrated in Okinawa are both rooted in the discriminatory policies of the national government. Each discriminates against the periphery to assure the protection of the state and guarantee the energy needs of the metropolis. In the backdrop of the fifty-seven year long Japanese nuclear power policy is the corrupt structure of "politics, bureaucracy, industry, labour organizations, academia, and media," what critics have labeled the "nuclear village." The central government targets vulnerable rural municipalities, already suffering from depopulation and economic degradation, to accept nuclear reactors or military bases, flashing subsidies, "white-elephant" projects, and jobs. But neither US bases nor nuclear reactors brought prosperity.

This article examines the "abandoned people" of Fukushima and Okinawa, in light of Japan's 3.11 disaster and the imposition of US bases on Okinawa, the responses of the Japanese government to their plight, and particularly the strategies of resistance that have emerged.

Satoko Oka Norimatsu is a writer and educator based in Vancouver, BC, Canada. She is Director of Peace Philosophy Centre and a Coordinator of The Asia-Pacific Journal: Japan Focus. Her upcoming book co-authored with Gavan McCormack, "NO! Okinawa's Message to Japan and the United States" will be published in spring 2012 by Rowman and Littlefield.

Recommended citation: Satoko Oka Norimatsu, 'Fukushima and Okinawa - the "Abandoned People," and Civic Empowerment,' The Asia-Pacific Journal Vol 9, Issue 47 No 3, November 21, 2011.


 Read more . . . 
Nicola Liscutin, Indignez-Vous! 'Fukushima,' New Media and Anti-Nuclear Activism in Japan

Indignez-vous! Get angry, resist and fight against the blatant social injustices in our world! Thus Stéphane Hessel, the 93-year old French former Resistance fighter, called on the youth in France, and everywhere else, in his inspirational pamphlet published in France in 2010. It has since been translated into dozens of languages, though not yet into Japanese. Indignation, for Hessel, provided the fundamental motivation for the Resistance movement in Nazi-occupied France, and he finds plenty of reasons for outrage today.

Anti-nuclear activism in Japan has grown at astonishing speed in response to the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear crisis and its handling by the authorities. Over the past months, not a week has gone by without anti-nuclear protests taking place somewhere in Japan (see the nation-wide action calendar). In September, an intriguing array of new and established citizens' movements had called for an 'anti-nuclear action week' that was packed with rallies, lectures, symposia, film screenings, exhibitions and various other events. On 9.11, protests were staged across Japan, with three demonstrations in Tokyo alone. The action week culminated in a c. 60,000 people rally in Meiji Park on September 19 kicking off a movement to collect 10 million signatures for the Sayonara Gempatsu petition. Given that by the summer, forgetting seemed already to have begun, at least beyond Tohoku, the nation-wide spread of these protests and their demographics are remarkable: from seasoned demonstrators to the many who confessed that this was their very first protest action; from families bringing their toddlers and children, to teenagers, students, freeters, the middle-aged, and pensioners. This article examines the structures of resistance.

Nicola Liscutin is currently a Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Tokyo.

Recommended citation: Nicola Liscutin, 'Indignez-Vous! 'Fukushima,' New Media and Anti-Nuclear Activism in Japan,' The Asia-Pacific Journal Vol 9, Issue 47 No 1, November 21, 2011.

Read more . . .
Peter Dale Scott, The Doomsday Project and Deep Events: JFK, Watergate, Iran-Contra, and 9/11

I would like to discuss four major and badly understood events - the John F. Kennedy assassination, Watergate, Iran-Contra, and 9/11. I will analyze these deep events as part of a deeper political process linking them, a process that has helped build up repressive power in America at the expense of democracy.

In recent years I have been talking about a dark force behind these events -- a force which, for want of a better term, I have clumsily called a "deep state," operating both within and outside the public state. Today for the first time I want to identify part of that dark force, a part which has operated for five decades or more at the edge of the public state. This part of the dark force has a name not invented by me: the Doomsday Project, the Pentagon's name for the emergency planning "to keep the White House and Pentagon running during and after a nuclear war or some other major crisis."

My point is a simple and important one: to show that the Doomsday Project of the 1980s, and the earlier emergency planning that developed into it, have played a role in the background of all the deep events I shall discuss.

Peter Dale Scott, a former Canadian diplomat and English Professor at the University of California, Berkeley, is the author of Drugs Oil and War, The Road to 9/11, and The War Conspiracy: JFK, 9/11, and the Deep Politics of War. His most recent book is American War Machine: Deep Politics, the CIA Global Drug Connection and the Road to Afghanistan.

Recommended citation: Peter Dale Scott, 'The Doomsday Project and Deep Events: JFK, Watergate, Iran-Contra, and 9/11,' The Asia-Pacific Journal Vol 9, Issue 47 No 2, November 21, 2011.

 Read more . . .