In this issue

Justin McCurry

The LDP-Unification Church scandal rumbles on. After the shock that greeted the sudden, violent, death of Shinzo Abe came anger over politicians’ ties with an organisation that critics denounce as a personality cult that exploits vulnerable people. The FCCJ’s professional activities committee has done sterling work securing a number of speakers connected to an issue that has gripped Japan for almost two months. The Club has recently hosted lawyers who represent victims of the Unification Church, as well as the head of the group in Japan. This issue devotes three articles to the scandal, starting with an overview by Jeffrey J. Hall, a special lecturer in Japanese Studies at Kanda University of International Studies. Philip Brasor and Masako Tsubuku devote their regular column to media coverage of the fallout from Abe’s death, while Andy Sharp reports on a fraught appearance at the Club by Tomohiro Tanaka, president of the Japan chapter of the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification. Elsewhere, Eric Johnston looks at the state of Sapporo’s bid to host the 2030 Winter Olympics, Kantaro Komiya and Erica Yokoyama cover a new report on sexual harassment and diversity in Japanese newsrooms, and Anthony Rowley examines Japan’s faltering commitment to the battle against climate change. Finally, I am delighted to welcome the first monthly message from Peter Elstrom, the FCCJ’s new president.

Artwork by Julio Shiiki.