Every Family has Its Spats

Last year may go down as the one in which the Japanese imperial family finally caught up with the Windsors in the dysfunction department. The saga began last May when Crown Prince Naruhito told reporters at a press conference that his wife, Masako, who has withdrawn from public life since December 2003, was suffering from exhaustion due to "acts" that denied the princess her career, her individuality and even trips abroad. (Masako was a career diplomat before she married Naruhito.) The crown prince said: "From what I have seen, she seems completely exhausted."

Naruhito's comments were unprecedented in...

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