Archives for : August2009

Death of LDP?

(Soon to be former) PM Aso

(Soon to be former) PM Aso

A pic from last night’s election briefing at the Liberal Democratic Party’s HQ. To atone for his party’s poor showing in the lower house elections, PM Taro Aso said he would step down as leader of his party, ending an almost unbroken 54-year reign for the conservative LDP. Wander what’s in store for Japan under the Democratic Party of Japan, which has been labelled in the Japanese media as the better of two evils? Well, it’s leader and quite likely the next Japan PM, Yukio Hatoyama, says “We will not be arrogant. We will listen to the people.” That’ll do for starters.

Free Uighur (and Guardian photographers while you’re at it)!!

Free Uighur (and Guardian photographers while you're at it)!!

Free Uighur (and photographers while you're at it)!!

“Guardian News and Media has proposed changes to the terms and conditions under which it commissions photography. If you are a photographer who could be affected by the proposals, please sign the letter below.”

Link to letter here

Japan War-end Anniversary!

Woman prays by a tree at the National Cemetery in Tokyo

Woman prays by a tree at the National Cemetery in Tokyo

Shinichi Kamajo, founder of ultra-right wing group Gishin Gokoku-kai

Shinichi Kamajo, founder of ultra-right wing group Gishin Gokoku-kai

Aug. 15, the day that marked Japan’s surrender in the Pacific War, is also a day when Japanese make the pilgrimage to Yasukuni Shrine, often referred to as “Japan’s Soul” and the place where convicted war criminals are interred. As a result, it is a magnet for nationalists and right-wingers. You can find more images that I took during a day which took me from the shrine, to the national cemetery and then on to another cemetery that houses the grave of Japan’s war-time leader Hideki Tojo here.
Also here a photo story on Japanese nationalism that ran in Global Post recently. Comments welcome!

Photographers? Terrorists the lot of ’em!

Just noticed another report about journalists in Britain who were stopped and searched by police.
When conducting a vox pops in a town center in England’s northeast, a photographer and a reporter from the Evening Gazette were asked by police to explain themselves and cited the Terrorism Act as the reason for the stop and search before demanding to see their IDs.
Interesting response by the The British Journal of Photography, which is running a ‘Not A Crime’ campaign in reaction to a number of similar stories about both amateur and press photographers being questioned by police under the new Counter Terrorism Act. Over the next year the campaign aims to get together thousands of self-portraits of photographers from around the world holding up a white card with ‘Not a crime’ or ‘I am not a terrorist’ written on them. Click here if you wish to take part.
Fingers crossed that the Japanese government, or for that matter governments from other countries that have yet to introduce such arcane laws, will not follow suit.

Who’d be a window cleaner in Tokyo?

Photojournalism: A Dying Industry? Story from NY Times

Just in case we didn’t know … Full story here

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