ELIZABETH SOELISTIO WRITES – Despite the cheerful and bright colors advertised on its billboards and posters, “A Taxi Driver” is a film that depicts the serious tale of an unsung hero who helped defend democracy by exposing a military dictatorship’s misdeeds in Gwangju, South Korea. Balancing comedy and political thrills,…Full Article South Korea: The Tale of ‘A Taxi Driver’ and the Gwangju Massacre
TOM PLATE WRITES – These are times that try one’s pro-American soul. To succeed Barack Obama as president, the fight looks to have come down to a duel between know-nothing and a know-it-all – between a candidate who has never held any political office, and one who has held only…Full Article CRAZY U.S. ELECTION: WHICH CANDIDATE MIGHT BE BEST FOR CHINA, JAPAN?
ASIA MEDIA WRITES – On April 6, LMU had the esteemed honor to bestow an Honorary Degree of Humane Letters on United Nations Secretary General, Ban Ki-Moon. The UNSG gave a keynote address on the morning of the degree conferral ceremony, wherein he gave a short policy speech. Afterward, Ban…Full Article LOS ANGELES: ‘HE WALKS AMID HISTORY’
ASIA MEDIA WRITES – Orville Schell has been writing about China for decades and is not viewed in the West as a China-basher by any means. But in the current New York Review of Books, the former dean of the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism offers a rigorous recounting…Full Article CHINA: A PESSIMISTIC VIEW OF XI JINPING
ERISA TAKEDA WRITES – Is PM Abe following in the footsteps of Xi regarding clamping down on the media? Japan has a different media system from China’s, so that is quite a dramatic statement and therefore I do not think that Abe is exactly following Xi’s footsteps regarding media censorship.…Full Article JAPAN: COLD WAR AGAINST THE NEWS MEDIA
BRADLEY JAMES CAVANAGH WRITES — In central Shanghai, a two-story building has been plastered with images of Xi Jinping, as if to protect it, and – through this attempted power of symbolism – granted a short reprieve from demolition. Pictures taken of this building went viral on social media, prompting…Full Article CHINA: Shanghai Building Owners Protest Demolition with Xi Jinping Posters.
ASIA MEDIA WRITES – The Asia Society held the 2016 Asia Arts Awards in Hong Kong on March 20 to honor three “game changers” in the contemporary Asian art community. As a leading educational organization and important authority in Asia, The Asia Society has been showcasing the Asia Arts Awards for more…Full Article HONG KONG: Asian Art ‘Game-Changers’ Honored by Asia Society
RYAN URBAN WRITES – Asian Americans have made their presence known in the fight against racial injustice. On Saturday, February 21, more than 10,000 protesters rallied in Cadman Plaza, Brooklyn to denounce the conviction of 28-year – old Peter Liang. The New York City police officer was convicted of second degree…Full Article USA: No Asian Exceptions in the American Justice System
ALEXIS CRUZ WRITES- Immune to accusations of bribery, human rights abuses, and having really hot weather, Qatar intends to host the 2022 World Cup as planned, come what may. Such immunity can make anyone cocky, and at a New York Times art conference in Doha, the Emir’s sister Sheikha Al…Full Article QATAR: Bring It On, Critics
JAMES ROYCE WRITES — A bad day of surfing might be better than a good day of working, but Australian surf wear brand Rip Curl is experiencing neither of these pleasures after admitting to using factories in North Korea, where work conditions are reminiscent of slave labor, to create the…Full Article AUSTRALIA: The High Price of Cheap Labor
KATIE TRINH WRITES – As said best by Gretchen Weiners from the iconic movie, “Mean Girls”– China, “you can’t sit with us.” Members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the United States met for the first time in Southern California February 15-16. Vietnam and other countries affected…Full Article VIETNAM: She Doesn’t Even Go Here!
ERISA TAKEDA WRITES – Despite claims from the Right that the film lacked credibility, would hurt U.S.-Japanese relations, and put the country in a bad light, Angelina Jolie’s biopic “Unbroken” opened in Japan without incident February 6. Released under the title “A Man of Fortitude” — a direct translation of…Full Article JAPAN: ‘Unbroken’ finally released in Japan
AMANDA KRETSCH WRITES – It’s been seven years since the release of “The Cove” but Japan evidently is still smarting. Former dolphin trainer and star of the brutal 2009 documentary, Ric O’Barry, arrived in Tokyo as a tourist last month and was immediately detained by officials. This isn’t the first…Full Article JAPAN: Japan Still Holding a Grudge, Taiji Still Hunting Dolphins
MIRANDA PAK WRITES – The U.S. this week (Feb. 2) joined calls for Chinese authorities to release five Hong Kong booksellers whose main crime appears to have been embarrassing Communist Party officials. What’s proving the bigger embarrassment is that no one doubts it is Beijing behind the kidnapping/detentions. Since October,…Full Article HONG KONG: Missing Book Sellers — When will China Fess Up? (UPDATED)
LAMIYA SHABBIR WRITES – Being a student in Pakistan is a high-risk occupation. In December, Taliban militants attacked Army Public School in Peshawar, killing 141 people. Though bloodier than most, the attack was by no means the first on institutes of learning. Taliban militants have shot up campuses, set schools ablaze,…Full Article PAKISTAN: HIGH RISK AMONGST HIGHER EDUCATION