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How the Tentacles of the U.S. Military Are Strangling the Planet

Vijay Prashad Alternet
The United States military has a staggering 883 military bases in 183 countries, Russia has 8, China 1. There is no country with a military footprint that replicates that of the United States. The bases create instability rather than peace.

Scars of Hiroshima

Vijay Prashad Newsclick
August 6 and August 9 were the dates of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. In an article written in June during a visit to Hirsohima, Vijay Prashad writes of the legacy of that tragedy and the continuing struggle for peace and disarmament.

Asia’s Other Nuclear Standoff

Conn Hallinan Foreign Policy in Focus
By roping India and Japan into its standoff with China, the U.S. is raising the nuclear stakes in Asia — including, dangerously, between India and Pakistan. With the world focused on the scary possibility of war on the Korean Peninsula, not many people paid much attention to a series of naval exercises this past July in the Malacca Strait, a 550-mile long passage between Sumatra and Malaysia through which pass over 50,000 ships a year.

labor

How Trade Unions Pulled the Brakes on Uber’s Bid to Enter Tokyo

Nithin Coca Equal Times
Japanese unions worked together to protest, lobby and organize and keep Uber out of Tokyo. They know Uber will continue to fight, so the battle is not over, but this example shows that unions can challenge the company and win.

labor

Japan Builds a Fight for $15 Movement of its Own

Lisa Torio Waging Nonviolence
Japanese activists have launched their own Fight for $15 movement, calling for a national minimum wage of 1500 yen per hour. The activists were inspired by the US movement, but also many of them were moved to get involved in social justice work after the Fukushima nuclear disaster in 2011. The movement wants to raise wages but also build a broader movement to counter the growing right-wing and anti-immigrant forces in Japan.

books

What Global English Means for World Literature

Haruo Shirane Public Books
The spread of capitalism as a global system and neoliberalism as its dominant economic policy has its analogue in the triumph of English as its undisputed enabling linguistic. The book under review argues that not only is this single-language sway historically unprecedented in allowing universal communication, but that its flattening effects on native languages and national discourse come with their own disabling downsides.

What the Class Politics of World War II Mean for Tensions in Asia Today

Walden Bello Foreign Policy in Focus
Postwar U.S. authorities helped rehabilitate erstwhile collaborators with the Japanese occupation in the name of fighting communism. Generations later, it’s led to the grandson of a despised Philippine collaborator endorsing the re-militarization of his country’s former occupiers — by the grandson of a war criminal, no less.

Future of War and Peace at Stake in Streets of Japan

David Swanson Let's Try Democracy/Writing by David Swanson
The United States and European allies have launched wars on the Middle East creating an enormous refugee crisis. The same nations threaten Russia. The question of maintaining peace with Iran is on the tip of everyone's tongue. Even in Asia, Pacific and Africa, the biggest military buildup is by the U.S. So why does Japan, of all places, have streets full of antiwar demonstrations for the first time since the U.S. war on Vietnam?
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