BADER ZAINAL WRITES — Like many countries around the world, Japan has suffered significant negative impacts to its tourism industry during the COVID-19 pandemic, but signs of travel restrictions easing bring hope for recovery. The beauty and mystique of Japan have long enticed visitors from international locales, with tourism soaring…Full Article JAPAN: WILL GLOBAL TRAVELERS GET TO SEE THE CHERRY BLOSSOMS THIS YEAR?
ALEC FARMER WRITES – Nature is a brutal place with harsh conditions that can push anyone to their limits. Despite the vastness of its glory, nature can also be a place of unmatched serene beauty. This dichotomy of truths is ever-present for those who live and move alongside the Earth.…Full Article BOOK REVIEW: WINTER PASTURE (2021) – THE BEAUTY AND COMPLEXITY OF WALKING THE WORLD
FRANCESCO FIMIANI WRITES — On November 4, 2021 I had the pleasure of interviewing Bugra Arkin, owner and founder of Dolan’s Uyghur Cuisine located in Alhambra, in East Los Angeles.. Prior to our interview, I sat down and had lunch at his restaurant. In the entrance you find a large…Full Article INTERVIEW WITH A UIGHUR: YES, HE SAYS, IT IS GENOCIDE
ELLA KELLEHER WRITES — Is it possible that some relationships teeter on the edge of societal acceptance while others are too tame? Ranging from cosplay sex with an older, married woman to a couple that rarely touch each other, Misumi Kubo’s new novel explores five deeply intimate and intertwined stories…Full Article BOOK REVIEW: SO WE LOOK TO THE SKY BY MISUMI KUBO (2021)
TOM PLATE WRITES — International peace and stability, more vital to survival than ever before in our enervating epoch of pandemic-proliferation and climate-deterioration, requires a collaborative community of responsibility. What is needed – urgently, obviously — is a global ethic of helping-out and digging-in for the common long haul rather…Full Article US-CHINA RELATIONS: START BY RECOGNIZING ITS ANIMAL NATURE
NATALIA FALCHI WRITES — Chinese tennis star Peng Shuai recently shared a personal #MeToo experience on Weibo, accusing former Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli of sexual assault. But her post was removed within minutes. Zhang Gaoli of course served on the Communist Party’s Politburo Standing Committee from 2012 to 2017. Ms.…Full Article CHINA: A TENNIS STAR LOBS AN ASSAULT ALLEGATION AGAINST A FORMER POLITICAL PLAYER
CLAIRE GUTE WRITES — The ongoing opioid crisis continues to plague much of America. Many have been affected by the opioid crisis in some form, whether knowing someone who has become addicted, overdosed, or lost her or his livelihood. What’s new is that it may be getting worse due to…Full Article THE CHINA-MEXICO CONNECTION: FENTANYL TRAFFICKING IS DEVASTATING
BRIEYA MOORBERG WRITES —The deer in Japan’s famed tourist destination, Nara Park, located in Nara Prefecture, have been dying. This year alone, 1,000 deer died after consuming plastic bags left behind by tourists. Now, to the rescue: A local Japanese entrepreneur, Hidetoshi Matsukawa, a souvenir wholesale agent who has invented…Full Article JAPAN: TOO MANY DEER HAVE BEEN EATING THEMSELVES TO DEATH
BRIANNA HIRAMI WRITES — Nobody is shocked to hear that you will have many difficult relationships in life that may cause fights, breakups, and pettiness. There are many romance novels and reality T.V. shows that warn you about the strains that a person can have with a romantic partner, but…Full Article BOOK REVIEW: CRYING IN H MART – A MEMOIR BY MICHELLE ZAUNER (2021)
ELLA KELLEHER WRITES – “We can’t know what happens behind closed doors” is a frustrating and insidious phrase that is too often weaponized to reduce instances of sexual assault to minor misunderstandings. In Japan, if a sexual assault occurs in a space without any witnesses, the case becomes a “black…Full Article BOOK REVIEW: BLACK BOX (2021) BY SHIORI ITO – THE MEMOIR THAT SPARKED JAPAN’S #METOO MOVEMENT
SAMANTHA GERBASI WRITES — Two months before Master Sergeant Lee took her own life, she was sexually assaulted by her male colleague, Master Sergeant Chang. Lee was sexually assaulted in March and committed suicide in May of 2021. It is no secret that South Korea’s hypermasculine military culture often turns…Full Article SOUTH KOREA: LONG-AWAITED JUSTICE ARRIVES FOR MASTER SERGEANT LEE
DEREK GARCIA WRITES — Star Wars’ ‘Visions’ was a great TV series that pushed the boundaries of the ‘Star Wars’ franchise and animation, but why didn’t it get more buzz? Well, Disney severely hurt and possibly killed its potential due to its method of release management. Let’s begin with what,…Full Article ANIME: DISNEY’S NEW ‘STAR WARS’ SERIES HAS CRASHED ON EARTH
LAUREN CRAVEN WRITES — In the US, we have Halloween. Then there is the Day of the Dead, which originated in Mexico. In Japan every year, the Obon festival is celebrated in most regions from the 13th to the 15th day of August. It’s an incredibly popular event in Japan,…Full Article JAPAN: WHO NEEDS HALLOWEEN WHEN YOU HAVE OBAKE?
NATALIA FALCHI WRITES — Months of energy shortages and power cuts to households in northeastern China have caused outages in factories across the nation. With this, while energy demand is soaring, so is the demand for Chinese exports, all of which affect the supply chain. The situation is expected to…Full Article CHINA: WILL AMERICA’S ‘BEAT BACK’ ACT PUSH FORWARD OUR SUPPLY CHAIN?
KAMRAN ALISHOV WRITES-The United Nations Security Council announced an emergency meeting following North Korea’s latest missile launch. On October 19th, North Korea fired a submarine-launched ballistic missile into waters off the coast of Japan. The information was immediately confirmed by South Korea’s military. At around 10:17 am, South Korea’s Joint…Full Article NORTH KOREA: THE BLAST HEARD AROUND THE WORLD
HEIDI SCHUBERT WRITES — A new Netflix series called “Squid Game” is a popular, ultraviolent drama in which people take part in a fatal game derived from traditional children’s activities. In doing so, it provides a window into how South Korean people might behave towards one another and what they’ll…Full Article SOUTH KOREA: NETFLIX’S ‘SQUID GAME’ WILL MAKE YOU SQUIRM