Today, on March 1, 1889 (Japan):
Moral philosopher, cultural and intellectual historian, WATSUJI Tesuro (和辻 哲郎) was born on this day. A native of Himeji, Hyogo Prefecture, he first found an interest in Western literature and philosophy.
In the early half of 1910, he introduced Japan to the works of Søren Kierkegaard and Friedrich Nietzsche; however in 1918 he changed and re-focused his energies on what made “Japan” distinct. Revitalizing Japanese culture, specifically the arts and Zen. He was an idol for nationalism and his theories claimed the Japanese were superior (regarding human nature and ethics). It has been stated that he regretted this byproduct of his work.
He had three main works, “History of Japanese Ethical Thought”, “Ririgaku” (Ethics), and “Fudo” (the Climate of Ethics). He died at the age of 71.
Read more @ http://bit.ly/1gIjX4J
Today, on March 1, 1872 (Philippines):
Spanish Governor-General José Basco y Vargas, a naval officer of the Spanish navy and served as the 53rd governor of the Philippines under the Spanish Empire, formally organized the Tobacco Monopoly in the Philippines. With the Tobacco industry, the Spanish were able to raise money for the defense against Muslim fighters in the south.
Some claim he also made the colony independent, by freeing it from the control of Mexico (then Kingdom of New Spain); and is remembered by the Philippine province of Batanes (named after him).
Many people throughout Manila and eight provinces of Luzon (Tondo, Cavite, Bantangas, Tayabas, Laguna, Pampanga, Bataan and Bulacan) were exploited to become tobacco farmers and continually abused as the Spanish exacted crops and gave payment. On top of that, there were corruption issues with tax collectors that worsened relations between the Philippines and the Spanish. The Spanish also resorted to using religious pretexts, as well as obedience to the crown as reasons to give physical punishment towards those Filipinos who were not complying with the Spaniards’ orders and regulations. The industry was finally abolished in 1882; however, tobacco farming was still practiced by those who wanted to use it for personal consumption.
Read more @ http://bit.ly/1fZMUHS
Today the Philippines has officially refused China’s offer to mutually withdraw from the Scarborough Shoal. Interestingly enough, China was quick to announce that it had never made such an offer while citing that “China’s determination of upholding territorial sovereignty and integrity is unshakeable. We will not do any trade with our territory and maritime rights and interest”.
As reported, Manila plans to file an arbitration case against China in March. China has made references that they will not participate in the hearings, so the main question that comes up is… Will China act like the United States, when the United States was sued by Nicaragua?
The United States refused to participate in the proceedings based on the claim that the International Court of Justice (ICJ) had no jurisdiction. Furthermore, after the United States lost the case in the ICJ in 1984, the United States blocked the enforcement of the judgment using their position on the United Nations Security Council. This means that even though Nicaragua won the settlement, they were unable to obtain any restitution.
So what does this mean for the Philippines? It could mean that China, who is also a permanent member of the UN Security Council, could imitate the United States’ actions and keep the status quo as it is now: China maintaining its claims, and staying with the Philippine’s exclusive economic zone.
What do you think we should do?
Read the article @ http://bit.ly/NE1rC1
China’s tried everything from brute force to a ‘carrot’ (defined as a mutual withdrawal of ships, as well as other reported investment opportunities) to keep the Philippines from taking their Territorial claim in the South China Sea (sorry Philippines, I have to use the IHO standard which states it’s SCS, not the West Philippine Sea).
China has refused the arbitral proceedings; however, the trial can still be conducted in absentia.
The Philippines has examined their case against the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) which defines (among many other things, but in particular) the 200-nautical mile exclusive economic zone (i.e. territory held into the sea); which will help the Philippines in this territorial dispute.
Good luck Philippines!
Read more @ http://bit.ly/1oapiVj
Note: Scarborough Shoal is what the Philippines calls the Panatag Shoal
The U.S. Department of States’ report on human rights (released February 27) stated they were “concerned” about the treatment of ethnic minorities living in Japan. It further states that Japanese officials claimed to have no power to fix the situation, even though Japan claims everyone within Japan has equal rights.
However, its the Zaitokukai (see my explanation below) that are causing the hate speeches in the ethnic minority communities within Japan. Although the US report claims the Japanese Government discriminates on minorities including by “restrict[ing] access to housing, education, health care and employment opportunities.”
What are your thoughts? Have you ever experienced this type of discrimination within Japan?
In the article, the group is mislabeled as “Zentokukai”; however, their full name is “在日特権を許さない市民の会” which is The citizen group that won’t forgive special privileges to those living in Japan” and their abbreviation is “Zaitokukai”
Read more @ http://bit.ly/1ceIEci
Today, on February 28, 1847 (Philippines):
Mr. Roman Ongpin, supporter of the Katipuneros (Kataas taasan, Kagalang galangang, Katipunan Ng Mga Anak Ng Bayan or the “Highest and Most Honorable Society of the Children of the Nation”) during the 1896 uprising against Spain, was born in Binondo (the oldest Chinatown in the world), Manila. He was a rich Chinese businessman who provided food, money, and provided meeting places in support of the Filipino independence movement. He was nicknamed, “Lieutenant of the Half-breeds of Binondo.”
He continued to fight for independence even after the United States occupied the Philippines (1898-1946). He died on December 10, 1912 (65) and a statue was placed at Binondo Church on a street named after him.
Read more @ http://bit.ly/1pBksUD
(My picture from my recent trip to the Philippines!)
(above picture from picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/pjYz8ayKY3oNbvQ6U_hKnw )
Today, on February 28, 1972 (Japan):
This 10-day hostage crisis (February 19 – 28) began when five radical United Red Army members entered the Mount Asama Lodge and took Yasuko MUTA (31) hostage. On the 10th day, the Police used a wrecking ball to break the walls and entered the house. During this assault, the radicals opened fired on the police (in the house and outside) using weapons and home-made bombs. Two police officers were killed and 15 others were wounded. A civilian was also fatally wounded. This was the first 10-hour marathon (continuous live stream) of news in Japan. This incident lead to a decreased leftist movement within Japan.
Read more @ http://bit.ly/N9VL2P (Asahi Article)