Prime Ministers of Japan

Shrine visit exposes Japan to new attack

For all their shared interests in a peaceful, prosperous and stable East Asia, there are plenty of reasons for Japan and China to be suspicious of one another, from rivalries over regional influence, to China's assertiveness and military build-up, to the role of the US mi

Wednesday, 17 October, 2012, 6:49pm

Will Noda usher in a hard-edged nationalism?

Japan's new prime minister, Yoshihiko Noda, takes over a system that's divided and weakened by the disaster at the Fukushima nuclear power plant in March. The surprise winner of a vote for leadership of the ruling Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ), Noda leads a government dedicated above all to restoring confidence.

6 Sep 2011 - 12:00am

Japanese minister on trip to Beijing

Japanese Foreign Minister Takeaki Matsumoto arrived in Beijing yesterday to start a two-day visit - his first trip to China since the March 11 quake.

Matsumoto, who took office two days before the disaster, arrived amid speculation that his country's embattled prime minister will visit in October.

4 Jul 2011 - 12:00am

Politicians squabble as nation drifts to the brink

Will Japan have its sixth prime minister in just four years tomorrow? Or will a key ruling party election lead to the political death of one of the country's most controversial figures, long regarded as the Mr Fix-It who for 20 years has tried to make and break governments?

13 Sep 2010 - 12:00am

Chance for rethink on US base

US President Barack Obama has too many things on his plate - including a spreading oil spill that threatens America's fisheries and wildlife - to be bothered with the petty domestic squabbles of a fading economic power 10,000 kilometres away.

5 Jun 2010 - 12:00am

quote of the week

'Leaders in both Japan and China know it would not be wise to quarrel. Healthy competition is good, but they know it should not be a zero-sum game.'

University of Tokyo professor Akio Takahara on the future of Sino-Japanese relations

Japan's Prime Minister, Yukio Hatoyama, has to think about how to treat the country's neighbours.

12 Oct 2009 - 12:00am

Japan must find voice to match its clout

Japan's new prime minister, Yukio Hatoyama, and his centre-left Democratic Party represent change. That was their election campaign pledge; it was why voters last month ended more than 50 years of almost uninterrupted rule by the Liberal Democratic Party.

17 Sep 2009 - 12:00am

LDP leadership considered a poisoned chalice

After suffering a humiliating defeat in Japan's general election, the Liberal Democratic Party faces its next big hurdle - choosing a leader who can rebuild the party.

However, familiar LDP names are reluctant to put themselves forward for a position considered to be a poisoned chalice.

15 Sep 2009 - 12:00am


Go to the Young Post website, choose 'Listening' from the menu and find the sound clips for this week's exercise. Each relates to a question below

Question 1

According to Ian Young, who has been defeated after ruling Japan since the end of the second world war?

a. The conservatives

b. The liberals

c. The Americans

10 Sep 2009 - 12:00am

Hatoyama should be proud of speaking out

It was just this side of comical. The leader of Japan's new ruling party barely finishes acknowledging his Democratic Party of Japan's huge win when a public-relations disaster strikes. The result: an ignominious international climbdown.

10 Sep 2009 - 12:00am

A test of Hatoyama's mettle

It is six days since Japan's voters sent Prime Minister Taro Aso and his Liberal Democratic Party to a crushing defeat and we are still waiting for the first refreshing pictures of the new prime minister in his official residence, or indeed of Aso sneaking out the back door.

5 Sep 2009 - 12:00am

Squaring up to Japan's 'iron triangle'

Some years ago, a political science professor at a Japanese university told me that he reckoned you could fit everybody who counted in Japan into one room. There are about 400 of them, so it would have to be a ballroom. All but a couple would be men, of course - and at least half of them would be there because their fathers and grandfathers were in the same ballroom 25 and 50 years ago.

2 Sep 2009 - 12:00am


Rivals by Bill Emmott Penguin, HK$142

16 Aug 2009 - 12:00am

Japan's security concerns are those of the Asia-Pacific

With all eyes on a rising India, an awakened China and a roiling Islam, we tend to take good old solid Japan (still the world's second-largest economy) as a given. But it's a mistake: these are times that try Japan's soul.

28 Jul 2009 - 12:00am

Can the DPJ really sing a new tune?

Japan now faces a long, hot summer of a potentially historic election, which is likely to see the ruling Liberal Democratic Party rudely turfed from power by voters for the first time since it was founded more than 50 years ago. (The 10 months out of power in the 1990s was due to internal splits and defections, not election defeat.)

25 Jul 2009 - 12:00am