Tuesday, January 8, 2013

'May your reign continue for a thousand, eight thousand generations, until the pebbles grow into boulders lush with moss.' This is the lyrics to Kimigayo, the national anthem of the Imperial Japan. This anthem is a symbol of Japanese nationalism, imperialism and militarism, which expresses praise and loyalty to the Japanese Emperor. Japanese prime minister, Abe, and the Liberal Democratic Party started off their first working day of 2013 by singing this song. Although in 1999, Kimigayo was legally recognized as the official national anthem, with the passage of Act on National Flag and Anthem, the song is often seen as a symbol of past imperialism and militarism. Kimigayo was the de facto national anthem before the country's defeat in World War II. The victory of Abe, often branded as a hawkish politician is seen as a sign that Japan might be shifting back to the right-wing. Abe used 'Take Back Japan' as the campaign slogan for the December election that returned the long-dominant party to power. Abe wants to loosen the limits of Japan's 1947 pacifist constitution on the military and recast wartime history with a less apologetic tone. He will also put patriotism back in the school curriculum and made education reform a priority. This is all to revive nationalism and imperialism in Japan, which will deepen the conflict between its Asian neighbors.

No comments:

Post a Comment