Friday, July 25, 2008

Grady Glenn on the Possibility of a Gaijin Nationalist Party of Japan

Just in from Grady Glenn:

Is it possible to be a gaijin and a Japanese nationalist? If so, I think I’m becoming one. The only time I’m not annoyed by the newspapers here is when I come across that rare article written with the “national interest” in mind. Most are written from this phony “global perspective” identical to the mainstream media in the U.S. (Try lining up today’s Asahi and Sankei Shinbuns with yesterday’s NY Times: the international news articles and op-eds are nearly identical.)

Given the history of the first half of the 20th century, it's easy to see why "nationalism" has been a dirty word for the last sixty or so years. But I think it’s starting to make a comeback— and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. In the U.S., there’s been the resurgence of political science realists like Stephen Walt, John Mearsheimer, and others. In politics, populists like Pat Buchanan, Ron Paul, and Ralph Nader seem to have only increased their following in recent years. On the net, there’s And in the blog-world, there’s Philip Weiss and others who argue that “national interests”— regardless of how imagined the notion of “the nation” might be— cannot be ignored.

If America can have its resurgence of nationalism, why not let Japan have theirs?

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