Interesting AFP article on a Chinese blogger and his suggestions for opening up China to Japanese points of view.

“I urge Japanese people to open your mind. We need your voice. We need your real information,” said the blogger, who writes under the name of Michael Anti, at a press conference in Tokyo.

He added that a language barrier had long prevented web users of the two Asian giants from cultivating true mutual understanding.

Online opinions from Japan’s extreme conservatives are eye-catching and are often translated in China, giving the ordinary Chinese public a distorted vision of the Japanese public opinion, Anti said. (Link)

This is often a vision that serves the Chinese government’s interests, painting Japan as paranoid and still nursing a grudge with China.

Most mainstream Japanese news media do not have Chinese-language editions, preventing Chinese readers from getting Japanese news directly from Japanese sources, Anti added.

“On the Chinese Internet, (Japan is) a weird, military country, where everyone wants to go back to the war,” he said.

Point made, Anti. Virtually everyone else in the world outside of China sees Japan as a (sometimes weird) country of pacifists. The truth is between these two extreme views, but I don’t think I’d get much argument suggesting it’s closer to pacifism. Let Chinese citizens see the breadth of Japanese opinion and let them come to their own conclusions.

(That is, as long as their government lets them read it.)


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A contributor and editor at the blog War Is Boring, Kyle Mizokami started Japan Security Watch in 2010 to further understand Japan's defenses and security policy.
Kyle Mizokami has 596 post(s) on Japan Security Watch