From the Editor

Justin McCurry

The UK Post Office scandal goes back a quarter of a century, but it is only in the past few weeks that the biggest miscarriage of justice in British legal history has captured the public’s imagination. Computer Weekly, Private Eye and the BBC were the first media organisations to investigate the case, in which around 3,500 sub-postmasters were wrongly accused of theft and fraud. Hundreds were prosecuted and at least four suicides have been linked to the scandal. But it was an ITV drama, Mr Bates vs the Post Office, that propelled their plight to the top of the British political agenda at the start of the year, fuelled by widespread anger the programme had created among viewers. The Japanese tech giant Fujitsu is central to the scandal, since it designed the faulty software that generated the data used to convict Post Office staff. The Japanese media have tiptoed around the firm’s responsibility for sending innocent men and women to prison, preferring to frame the story as a domestic UK issue that happens to involve a Japanese firm. In this month’s cover story, Peter McGill walks us through the Great British Post Office Scandal and its potential consequences for Fujitsu. Also in this issue: the unstoppable rise of Shohei Ohtani, Rahm Emanuel at the FCCJ, covering the Taiwan elections, 30 years since the fall of Marco Polo magazine, repatriating Ainu remains, the Supreme Court and the Japan Arts Council, the global kawaii revolution, and lots more.

Cover artwork: Julio Shiiki

Swadesh DeRoy Scholarship