east asia

India’s cultural capital is enough and more to not let Chinese Confucius institutes win the soft-power game. But, can [India] use it in the proper manner?

[Hello Kitty is] so much more than just a cartoon character, she's the globally recognized ambassador for Japanese soft power in East Asia and beyond, according to anthropologist Dr. Christine Yano from the University of Hawaii.

Okinawa, Japan - The governor of this island, Takeshi Onaga, has annoyed both Washington and Tokyo by taking the case of his people against a US military base directly to the UN Human Rights Council.

The image and caption were posted by a right-wing Japanese artist last month. Now, more than 10,000 people have signed a Change.org petition in Japanese urging Facebook to take it down. The petition, posted by an account calling itself the "Don't Allow Racism Group", [...] demands that "Facebook must recognize an illustration insulting Syrian refugees as racism."

Kinmen (Taiwan) is eyeing closer commercial ties with China. China is seeking unification with Taiwan under its "one country, two systems" formula by which Hong Kong, a former British colony, returned to Chinese rule in 1997. And Kinmen, or "Golden Gate", is a test for China's ambitions to recover Taiwan through soft power.

India is likely to bolster its 'Look East Act East' policy with a good dose of Buddhism and project it as a cultural and civilisational bridge with the countries in South East Asia. Modi himself gave enough indications of this in his speech on Monday.

On his America tour, he makes the case for the democratic alternative to China’s influence in East Asia. By any measure, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s visit to the United States has been a resounding success. Having just wrapped up three full days in Washington, D.C., Abe is now in California, visiting both San Francisco and Los Angeles. Before Washington, he stopped in Boston and New York, making this the longest visit by a Japanese leader in decades.

China’s public offer to mediate peace talks between the Taliban and the Afghan government marks a notable departure in Chinese foreign policy. It is the first time Beijing is taking a genuine leadership role, on its own initiative, on a geopolitical issue both sensitive and significant.