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A trial began in Seoul last week of a Japanese journalist indicted for defaming South Korean President Park Geun-hye by reporting rumors that she was absent for seven hours during a ferry boat disaster in April because the unmarried lady chief of state was with a man.
It's election time in Japan now. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe dissolved the Lower House of the Diet last Friday, and a snap general election is scheduled for Dec. 14. Abe's Liberal Democratic Party won a landslide general election in 2012, and the next general election wouldn't take place until 2016.
Last week's Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit meeting clearly shows the rise of China and the relative decline of the United States. A confident Xi Jinping made Beijing the venue to pronounce China as the power to be reckoned with in the fraying pax Americana.
Eligible voters in Taipei will go to the polls in three weeks' time to elect their new mayor. There are two candidates, both of them political amateurs. One of them is 44-year-old Sean Lien, a son of former Vice President Lien Chan, who is honorary chairman of the Kuomintang.
Chiang Kai-shek's birthday isn't a national holiday any more. So people of Taiwan didn't have a day off last Friday. Nothing was done to remember him, though we should thank him for keeping Taiwan a democracy.
The People's Republic of China is expanding at least two of the Spratly Islands to heighten tensions in the South China Sea. One of them is Fiery Cross Reef, also known as Yongshu Reef (永暑磯), which is actually a group of three reefs. The other is Johnson South Reef, known in Chinese as (赤瓜磯), which lies adjacent to the Vietnamese-occupied Collins Reef.
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Japan's Imperial Household Agency has published an official biography of the Emperor Showa (昭和天皇實錄), though he is better known the world over as just Hirohito (裕仁), his given name. Showa is his reign title.
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I've lost a friend. Dr. Hung Ching-chang (洪慶章) left the world last Wednesday. He was 83.
"Rebel Without a Cause" is a 1955 American film about emotionally confused suburban, middle-class teenagers. Starring James Dean, it offered both social commentary and an alternative to previous films depicting delinquents in urban slum environments.
William Stanton, a former director of the Taipei Office of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT), made a speech at an International Symposium on U.S. Presence in Asia and Regional Security in Taipei on Sept. 13.
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