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AUGUST 10, 2004
Can Japan Keep the Peace?
The country is rethinking its pacifist Constitution. Despite cogent arguments for revision, it will be a tough sell

OCTOBER 1, 2003
Facing Facts about Asia's Sex Trade
For all the phony official outrage, prostitution involving teens, even children, is rampant throughout the region. Time for a reality check

Toyota's Doubled-Edged Triumph
The Japanese carmaker recently passed DaimlerChrysler as No. 3 in U.S. sales. Instead of cheering, though, its execs fret about a backlash

AUGUST 25, 2003
Has Japan Turned the Corner?
There are encouraging signs on all fronts. Now, it's up to the politicians to embrace reform and keep the momentum going

APRIL 24, 2003
Saddam Hussein and Shoko Asahara
The dictator's use of chemical weapons on Iraqis recalls the gas attack the leader of cult Aum Shinrikyo allegedly unleashed in Tokyo's subway

MARCH 14, 2003
Bush Has a Friend in Japan
Japanese Prime Minister Koizumi has silently but aggressively been supporting the U.S. President's Iraq agenda. One reason: North Korea

FEBRUARY 27, 2003
Japan's Economic Chicken Littles
They wail that China's boom will crush their ailing economy. However, this powerhouse neighbor is actually helping Japan

FEBRUARY 6, 2003
Time to Bet on Japan's Restructuring?
The crackdown on nonperforming loans may sharpen the hunger for foreign capital. But this is a game for only the strong of stomach

JANUARY 15, 2003
A Japanese-Style Star Wars?
A joint missile-defense shield with the U.S. is becoming a more likely possibility in the face of growing threats from North Korea

DECEMBER 23, 2002
Is the IMF Ready to Lean on Japan?
An ex-IMF economist predicts that the institution will crank up the pressure big-time on Tokyo and its amazing banking mess in 2003

DECEMBER 5, 2002
Tokyo's Tobacco Tax: A Smoke Screen
Despite the government's pious talk, the hardly higher levy it's considering won't persuade many of Japan's diehard smokers to quit

NOVEMBER 6, 2002
Japan's Need to Accept Failure
Only when hopeless companies are forced off artificial life support can the country have a real chance at rebuilding its economy

OCTOBER 14, 2002
The Tax-Cut Tonic Tokyo Needs
Suspending all sales taxes would revive Japan's economy, making it easier to clean up the banks' bad loans. The deficit? That can wait

SEPTEMBER 20, 2002
The Carrot and North Korea's Kim
The despotic ruler appears to be yielding to world pressure -- and diplomacy. If only Saddam Hussein would do likewise

SEPTEMBER 16, 2002
September 11 Through a Japanese Lens
A distant perspective can put moral and logical issues in the sharpest focus, something being an American in Tokyo has taught me

AUGUST 29, 2002
Koizumi on Iraq: Silence Isn't an Option
Japan's Premier must state soon if he backs a U.S. attack. However, public opposition and his falling ratings make this a tough call

AUGUST 15, 2002
Sumo 2002: Same Bulk, Thinner Audience
The ancient sport seems to be losing ground. That's a shame, because it offers important lessons for Japan's modern crisis of confidence

JULY 25, 2002
The Corporate Gotcha Game Hits Japan
Orix, a financial group, saw its stock punished after accounting questions arose, even though it's one of the country's best-run outfits

JULY 11, 2002
No Cheer in Japan over America's Woes
Tokyo is too busy sweating about what'll happen to it if U.S. corporate scandals keep weighing down the greenback

JUNE 25, 2002
In Japan, Cute Conquers All
What is it about the culture that young people -- men as well as women -- are so hooked on cuteness? The answer isn't simple

JUNE 13, 2002
Time for Koizumi to Jump Ship
Japan's Prime Minister should launch a new party dedicated to true reform. As enemies plot his downfall, he has nothing to lose

MAY 31, 2002
How to Beat Soccer's Shock Troops
World Cup co-hosts Japan and South Korea have been ridiculed for tough measures aimed at thuggish fans. No apologies are needed

MAY 14, 2002
A Substantive Battle at Tokyo Style
Yoshiaki Murakami wants the cash-rich apparel maker to share with shareholders. More than a proxy fight, it puts Japan's CEOs on notice

MAY 9, 2002
Watch Out Japan, Korea Is Gaining
If Korean startups' success with MP3 players is any indication, Japanese consumer electronics giants could have a problem

APRIL 24, 2002
Misreading the Enron Scandal
The energy trader's failure shouldn't be an excuse for Japan to eschew U.S.-style corporate-governance practices

APRIL 10, 2002
A Japanese Nuke: No Longer Unthinkable
China's military push has at least one Tokyo leader speaking openly of entering an arms race, perhaps even developing nuclear capability

MARCH 27, 2002
Message from the 1800s: Toughen Up
Japan would do well to learn from Yukichi Fukuzawa, a Meiji-era educator and reformer, if it hopes to turn itself around

MARCH 20, 2002
Japan's Far Left Has Gone Too Far
Intellectual Kenzaburo Oe's blame-the-U.S. ranting and conspiracy theories are amazingly naive in the post-September 11 world

MARCH 13, 2002
Political Dirt Might Be Gold for Koizumi
Scandals involving two party bigwigs are just the opening he needs to press his stalled reforms -- if he's up to it

FEBRUARY 28, 2002
A Nordic Track to Japanese Bank Reform
Sweden's success in salvaging its financial system in 1990 may provide a good road map for Japan to follow

FEBRUARY 21, 2002
Is Bush Having Doubts about Koizumi?
His lavish praise for Japan's Prime Minister also revealed concerns that the stymied reformer may not survive much longer

FEBRUARY 19, 2002
A New Tool for Japan's Bank-Repair Job
Bundling bad loans into asset-backed securities that can be sold off at home and abroad is an idea that's gaining momentum

FEBRUARY 7, 2002
Land of the Setting Sun?
The world has been waiting 10 years for a new dawn in Japan. It's getting easier to imagine that it might never happen

JANUARY 29, 2002
A Grudge Match for Japan and Korea
There's not even a sporting chance that co-hosting this year's World Cup soccer games will see these traditional enemies forgive and forget

JANUARY 17, 2002
Chinese Exports: Japan's Phantom Menace
Scary as it seems to most Japanese, the Asian giant's growing prowess -- even in high tech -- doesn't have to be bad news for them

DECEMBER 20, 2001
Looking Back in Laughter at Japan's 2001
The country has plenty of all-too-serious woes, but these events also merit remembering -- at least for a few minutes

DECEMBER 12, 2001
A Weaker Yen Won't Strengthen Japan
While that would boost exports and ease deflation, it could cause more harm -- and won't cure what really ails this crippled economy

NOVEMBER 21, 2001
Japan's Private-School Mania Isn't All Crazy
While some families let the drive to get their kids into a top school consume them, they have some sensible reasons

OCTOBER 31, 2001
No Letup for GE's Japanese Deal-a-thon
Jeff Immelt will maintain the global giant's torrid takeover pace. And in this country's stagnant state, GE's call can be good news

OCTOBER 15, 2001
Bin Laden's Obscene Equivalency
The terrorist justifies his massacres by citing Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It's time for Japan's leaders to set him straight

SEPTEMBER 27, 2001
"Those Terrorists Were Acting Globally"
Eisuke Sakakibara, a former Japanese Finance Vice-Minister, talks about how the world has changed -- economically and politically -- since the attacks

SEPTEMBER 27, 2001
Tremors from Sept. 11 Shake Japan
Jolted into a new awareness of its security, the country is rallying around Prime Minister Koizumi's decisive response to Bush's war on terrorism

SEPTEMBER 13, 2001
Japan's Overdue Bank Cleanup: Maybe This Time?
The IMF could provide the protective political shield Koizumi & Co. will need to pry loose the money the job will require

AUGUST 29, 2001
Wanted: More Lawyers -- and Fast
A legion of aggressive attorneys would aid Japan's little guy, put corruption in the spotlight, and speed economic reform

AUGUST 15, 2001
A Chill Wind for Japan's Snow Country
Koizumi's austerity programs mean no more largesse for this rural area. Pain now, though, may bring better days later

AUGUST 8, 2001
It's Koizumi vs. Japan's Broken Banks
Despite a pledge to tackle this dirty job, so far not much action. Here's what he's up against -- and how he can restore their health

JULY 24, 2001
In Japan, Dead Soldiers Never Fade Away
If Prime Minister Koizumi honors his nation's war dead, the inevitable fury will make a long-overdue apology for wartime atrocities even more unlikely

JULY 10, 2001
Koizumi's Rx: Get Used to the Pain
The Japanese Prime Minister's reforms are badly needed medicine for an ailing economy. Just don't expect a quick cure, or an easy one

JULY 3, 2001
Breaches in Japan's Fortress Economy
Long known -- and often reviled -- for being a closed system, Japan today is becoming more and more a part of the global economy

JUNE 20, 2001
In Tokyo, You Need a Gift for Giving
When securing a place for your child in a good school depends on thank-you money, where does courtesy stop and bribery start?

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