Standing Their Ground

At first glance, the timing looked impeccably bad. With emotions between China and Japan still raw after weeks of anti-Japanese protests in major Chinese cities, 80 Japanese Diet members and the personal representatives of 86 others assembled at 8:00 a.m. last Friday to pay their respects at the Yasukuni Shrine in central Tokyo. No ordinary center of Shinto worship, Yasukuni is where the souls of 2.5 million Japanese war dead are enshrined. Since 1978, when 14 of Japan's most notorious World War II war criminals were added to the books of veneration there, Japan's neighbors have considered the shrine not a...

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