A recent BBC documentary investigating claims of sexual abuse by the late entertainment mogul Johnny Kitagawa triggered plenty of comment on social media in Japan, including a testy contribution from the veteran TV celebrity Dave Spector. While Shukan Bunshun used the programme to resurrect the controversy surrounding Kitagawa, who died in 2019, Predator: The Secret Scandal of J-Pop did not merit a single mention in newspapers or on TV networks. In this month’s cover story, David McNeill explains why most Japanese media prefer to look the other way where Kitagawa is concerned. Elsewhere, Professor Ryuichi Higuchi responds to Rotem Kowner and Joshua Fogel’s piece in the December issue of the Number 1 Shimbun about claims that his grandfather, Lieutenant General Kiichiro Higuchi, rescued Jewish refugees during World War II. Ilgin Yorulmaz asks if Japan is serious about protecting children from sexual abuse, while Suvendrini Kakuchi reports on a recent FCCJ Book Break on diversity in business and higher education. In their regular columns, Philip Brasor and Masako Tsubuku outline the myriad challenges facing the news and entertainment behemoth NHK, while Eric Johnston wonders if the forthcoming G7 environment ministers’ meeting in Hokkaido will whitewash the historical plight of the region’s indigenous Ainu community.
Cover artwork by Julio Shiiki