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  #481  
Old 05-03-2012, 04:23 PM
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I like CP Masako's outfit. The scarf adds some color, too. Nice to see the three of them again.
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  #482  
Old 05-03-2012, 04:31 PM
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I am curious about Masako and her lack of public appearances. I know she has had "health" issues and apparently problems with the IHA, but if she can hold it together when appearing with her husband and child at small occassions like this why can she not apparently hold it together to undertake more public engagements in Japan or even abroad for events like weddings? I would think she would want to get out of the palace as often as possible if things are so bad within the palace walls. Is she really so much of a prisoner that even attending some sort of charity or cultural event outside the walls is not allowed?
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  #483  
Old 05-03-2012, 07:17 PM
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Since the chief criticism of Masako is that she won't attend any public engagements, I don't think there's a question of it's not being allowed.

That's precisely what the IHA, the press, and much of the public wants her to do, so what would prevent her?
  #484  
Old 05-03-2012, 08:02 PM
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Mirabel,
Are you privy to any special detailed information about what Crown Princess Masako is and is not allowed to do? It has been my understanding that the IHA regulates much of official appearances and daily life within the Imperial family. There must reasons for Crown Princess Masako's rare public appearances.
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  #485  
Old 05-03-2012, 09:12 PM
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No, I am not, as you are no doubt well-aware and are making a statement to suggest that I have no understanding of the lengths the IHA will go.

Nevertheless, I believe that Masako's non-attendance is her own doing, and not some nefarious conspiracy on the part of the IHA.
(For one thing, I don't believe her husband would allow it; for another,, I don't think the Emperor would condone it).

If you have reasons to suspect that Masako is kept under lock and key, I would Like to hear them.
  #486  
Old 05-03-2012, 10:44 PM
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I am not in the camp of those, who think that the bad IHA has locked Princess Masako away. The IHA, as an agency, is very effective (e.g., the heir crisis was resolved) in managing the Imperial Household and adheres to established strict protocols. It would be fair to assume that the IHA is aware of the public opinion about Crown Princess Masako's very secluded way of life. If the IHA did not take any drastic measures to address the issue and increase Crown Princess Masako's official engagements, there must some valid reasons for it. Given the above, I do think that Crown Princess Masako's health precludes her from performing duties alongside her husband and the IHA has been listening to the doctor's or doctors' recommendations and letting her live in seclusion.
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  #487  
Old 05-04-2012, 02:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Al_bina View Post

Given the above, I do think that Crown Princess Masako's health precludes her from performing duties alongside her husband and the IHA has been listening to the doctor's or doctors' recommendations and letting her live in seclusion.
I understand your reasoning, and agree in part.
However, in that case I think the IHA, along with the Imperial Family, would be better served by being more upfront about Masako's health problems.

How long can they keep attributing everything to adjustment disorder?
Or if it is severe depression, why not just admit it, and deflect the criticism? The secrecy baffles me.
  #488  
Old 05-05-2012, 10:42 AM
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I think that, at least in part, the reason is to be found in cultural differences. In Japan it is very impolite to say anything that might embarrass the person(s) you are speaking to. According to my impression at least, this leads to people sometimes boldly asserting obvious falsehoods and trusting that they won´t be challenged about them because of the social rules. (Concerning the cultural differences in the handling of delicate royal issues, please see also this blog of mine: Photo of Princess Kako leaked onto Internet)

Another reason could be that the IHA are simply not that effective in protecting Masako´s public image, be it because of incapability or because of unwillingness. At least, that is what Japanese author Naoko Tomono (who has written a book about the princess) seems to think.

Quote:
According to Tomono, the agency also mishandled the Crown Princess' illness. "As they are a traditionally minded body, they were reluctant to accept or understand her emotional illness, or explain it to the public. They allowed the press to say that she fell ill because she was selfish, and I think that sin is grave," she said.
In that article you also find an answer to your former question if Masako will become empress. First, one has to say that the moment the emperor passes away, Naruhito will automatically get to be the emperor and his wife the empress. So unless he does not divorce her, it does not matter how ill she is. Concerning the possibility of a divorce, Japan Times writer Mariko Kato says:

Quote:
It is generally accepted that the Crown Princess can divorce her husband under the Imperial Household Law, which stipulates that a commoner married to a prince can leave the family through divorce or if her husband dies. In reality, however, divorce between the couple is highly unlikely, according to Tomono.

"Neither the Crown Prince nor Princess Masako is the type to divorce and run away from the problem. In fact, that's precisely why she fell ill in the first place," she said. "The couple get on well, and the princess feels strongly about her husband and the royal institution. They simply want to show (the public) that they are working hard to do what they think is right," she added.
Japan Times

Quote:
Originally Posted by NGalitzine View Post
I am curious about Masako and her lack of public appearances. I know she has had "health" issues and apparently problems with the IHA, but if she can hold it together when appearing with her husband and child at small occassions like this why can she not apparently hold it together to undertake more public engagements in Japan or even abroad for events like weddings? I would think she would want to get out of the palace as often as possible if things are so bad within the palace walls. Is she really so much of a prisoner that even attending some sort of charity or cultural event outside the walls is not allowed?
I do not necessarily believe all that is written about the princess. But I do believe that her state of health is unstable. So if they´d give her a busier schedule, she´d probably end up appearing more in public than she does now, all in all. But she also from time to time would have to cancel an engagement because of health reasons. It seems that this is unacceptable. Several years ago, the head of the crown prince household was (publicly!) admonished by the grand steward of the IHA because the princess canceled an engagement just one day in advance because of health reasons. I suppose that they prefer to not send her to official engagements at all instead of risking a cancellation once in a while.

The other thing is that it seems that the princess would like to take up a cause that she has at heart (like the crown prince does with environment/water issues), probably help disadvantaged children or something of the sort. Her doctors have repeatedly said that this should be made possible because it might help her recover. Still, the princess is obviously not allowed to do that. (In Japan´s monarchy, the principle of royal neutrality is taken very far, and it is basically supposed that royals go where ever they are being sent. They are not allowed to favour one charity over another. The crown prince has hinted at his wish to change that and this is, incidentally, one of the points that his brother has criticized by saying that, according to him, royal duties are “passive in nature”.)

I also suspect that even if the princess should be able to accompany her husband abroad, she won´t be allowed to do this as long as she does not fulfill all her regular duties in Japan.
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  #489  
Old 05-05-2012, 10:44 AM
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More pics of Crown Prince Naruhito, Crown Princess Masako and Princess Aiko waving upon arrival in Tochigi Prefecture on May 3, 2012.

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11

Video

One more pic
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"In order to make the area inhabitable again, we face the difficult problem of removing radiation." - Emperor Akihito

(Following recent incidents, I would like to refer anybody who may think the emperor´s statement obvious or redundant to this thread, post #682.)
  #490  
Old 05-09-2012, 09:07 AM
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In this article it is said that the emperor after holding a 20-minutes-conversation with the Peruvian president (see this thread) on themes like Peruvian-Japanese cooperation in education and economics, presented him to the crown prince and the crown princess.


Quote:
Durante la reunión el Emperador presentó a su familia, el príncipe Nahurito y la princesa Masako.
Google translation
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"In order to make the area inhabitable again, we face the difficult problem of removing radiation." - Emperor Akihito

(Following recent incidents, I would like to refer anybody who may think the emperor´s statement obvious or redundant to this thread, post #682.)
  #491  
Old 05-09-2012, 01:48 PM
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Is this the first time in awhile that CP Masako has met a visiting head of state?
  #492  
Old 05-11-2012, 09:41 AM
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As far as I know, yes, but that obviously does not mean much. There are no pictures of Masako meeting Humala and his wife which means that no media were present. It was by mere coincidence that I found the one article that mentioned the meeting. So it is quite possible that the crown princess has met foreign dignitaries before but that it was not covered by the press because there were no pictures. But it is possible as well that such meetings did not take place, of course.

Quote:
[...] in Tokyo on Friday, Crown Prince Naruhito and his wife Crown Princess Masako met with the visiting head of the University of Oxford, Vice Chancellor Andrew Hamilton.

It was the first time for the crown princess to engage in external official duties since last November when she and the crown prince met with then outgoing Vietnamese Ambassador to Japan, Nguyen Phu Binh, who came to bid farewell before leaving the post, according to the Imperial Household Agency.
The Mainichi
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"In order to make the area inhabitable again, we face the difficult problem of removing radiation." - Emperor Akihito

(Following recent incidents, I would like to refer anybody who may think the emperor´s statement obvious or redundant to this thread, post #682.)
  #493  
Old 05-19-2012, 01:44 PM
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Brilliant news about Masako.
Hopefully, now that the pressure is relatively off her, she will be able to make a full recovery.
Masako certainly looked very happy and at ease in the recent pictures from the airport.
  #494  
Old 05-19-2012, 03:00 PM
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I am delighted to hear that CP Masako has found the strength to fulfill her royal duties.The press didn´t put an emphasis on her attendance and didn´t publish so many pictures of her,it seems that they are more careful and considerate and changed their behaviour towards the Princess.This will probably lessen the stress and give her the feeling of security so that she can regain her confidence and raise to the expectations that are set in her.
  #495  
Old 05-19-2012, 04:16 PM
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The pressure to bear an heir must have been off her during the last 2 or 3 years already. But her husband once said that the public attention was too much on the pressure to have a boy and trips abroad (as speculated reasons for Masako´s illness) and that there were still other reasons for his wife´s problems. I do not see any evidence that those reasons have been removed.

I am certainly the first to hope that the crown princess will recover in spite of everything. But we have seen her make one step forward and one step back again for years now, so, for the moment at least, I would not expect too much. On the other hand, considering the rumours after the awkward statements of the head of the Crown Prince Household, it serves to show in any case that the crown princess is not getting worse, as some thought.
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"In order to make the area inhabitable again, we face the difficult problem of removing radiation." - Emperor Akihito

(Following recent incidents, I would like to refer anybody who may think the emperor´s statement obvious or redundant to this thread, post #682.)
  #496  
Old 05-29-2012, 04:41 PM
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Crown Prince Naruhito attended a ceremony to mark the 90th anniversary of the founding of the Scout Association of Japan on May 26, 2012. Picture

WFP Executive Director Thanks Japan For Ongoing Commitment To Ending Hunger
Quote:
On her first trip to Japan as the Executive Director of the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), Ertharin Cousin this week welcomed the continued commitment by Japan – including the Japanese government, business, non-governmental organizations and citizens – to the fight against hunger. [...]
Her lecture, entitled “Fighting Hunger Worldwide,” was attended by Their Imperial Highnesses Crown Prince Naruhito and Crown Princess Masako and an audience comprising diplomats, representatives of UN agencies, NGOs and private companies, university teachers, students, and individuals.
I have found a few pictures that show the crown prince and princess on their way to the above-mentioned lecture: "Fighting Hunger Worldwide". They are a bit dark, but there is a very good video that shows the couple at the event at this blog that is dedicated “to the beautiful family of the crown prince of Japan“.

It is said there that the event was originally scheduled to be attended by the Crown Prince alone.
I am always glad to see the crown princess in public, and I am convinced that she was very interested to learn more about the subject of the lecture.

Obviously, someone has taken the trouble to make the photos a bit lighter, that version is to be found here.
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"In order to make the area inhabitable again, we face the difficult problem of removing radiation." - Emperor Akihito

(Following recent incidents, I would like to refer anybody who may think the emperor´s statement obvious or redundant to this thread, post #682.)
  #497  
Old 05-30-2012, 12:23 PM
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Crown Princess Masako's public appearances are a welcome development.
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  #498  
Old 05-30-2012, 01:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Al_bina View Post
Crown Princess Masako's public appearances are a welcome development.
I agree. She has been given too much bad publicity from the ultra right.
  #499  
Old 05-30-2012, 08:04 PM
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CP Masako looked comfortable at this event. The signs are promising. Let's hope and pray they continue and that she'll be able to perform as Empress one day.
  #500  
Old 06-14-2012, 08:56 AM
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Crown Prince Naruhito and Crown Princess Masako arrive in mourning attires for the funeral of Prince Tomohito, a cousin of Emperor Akihito.

http://i49.tinypic.com/29zynug.jpg

http://i45.tinypic.com/2n9gyug.jpg

http://i49.tinypic.com/2iu8uo.jpg
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