The Myth of the Israeli Passport Stamp Problem

Wow… just in case Japan allows dual citizenship (provided it implements the Behaltungsgemehnigung), I’ll simply use the Japanese passport for the Gulf/Arab countries while I use the Philippine passport for Israel. Das ist alles! Ijou!

The Happy Hermit

When speaking to fellow travellers, globetrotters and Couchsurfers, I am always amazed how many people are afraid of visiting Israel – not because of Hamas’ rockets from Gaza or because of suicide bombers, but because of a stamp in a passport. Guys, you are missing out on the most fascinating and interesting country in the world – for no reason.

There are two myths, one which is complete bogus and one which has some truth to it, but I will give you the hot-shot traveller’s advice on how to work your way around the so-called “Israeli passport stamp problem”. I have been to Israel many times and I have also been to Iran, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Egypt. I have never had a problem entering any of these countries at all. – I should mention that I have a German passport (or two of them as you…

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A sky full of lighters (Meeting Yeng Constantino)

That’s why Yeng Constantino is underrated–but in Japan, I bet she’ll be very popular there.

I have to say, yesterday was a really big honor for me to actually meet one of the sought after talents in the country: Yeng Constantino. She, as well as DJ Callum David, performed at De La Salle Lipa for their college night, or as they call it #AnimoJam. Which to say, is very much… Well, La Sallista of them to name it as such. hehe

The crowd went wild at the sound of her name, even more at the sound of her footsteps! The noise could’ve drowned anyone’s ears to deafness but the sound of Yeng’s voice silenced them, only for a second, because hearing and seeing her in person were two different things… So to say, no one in the stadium can contain themselves when she stepped to the lime light.

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Yasukuni and Nationalist Identities, Japanese and Korean

It is already given that if a Prime Minister visits the controversial Yasukuni Shrine personally, it will cause an uproar amongst the Koreans and Chinese people. Because the Japanese PM of course, represents Japan, if he will visit the said shrine personally, it means that he honors A-class war criminals.

I believe that as an outsider, visiting any controversial place where big-time war criminals are enshrined is taboo in general. No wonder, Germans accepted their country’s dark past, which is good because they don’t want history to repeat itself again.

JAPANsociology

by Lilia Yamakawa

In 1985, US President Ronald Reagan agreed to visit a cemetery in Bitburg, Germany to lay a wreath in honor of Germany’s war casualties. Reagan’s team of advisors did not do their homework, and it was later discovered that the cemetery contained graves of some of Hitler’s elite officers who had taken part in the massacre of Jews. Here was a president who always talked about “American values”, and he was going to pray for soldiers who had caused the Holocaust. There were strong protests by Jewish groups, US congressmen, US military officials, and regular citizens who all urged Reagan not to make the visit. He felt he could not cancel, however, and instead, a trip to a nearby concentration camp was also scheduled for the day of the cemetery visit. Reagan was not anti-Jewish, nor was he a Nazi sympathizer, and he himself had even served…

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Reconsidering Japan’s Denial of Dual Citizenship

To be honest, I think Japan should allow multiple citizenship in general, but they should implement the “permission required” policy (German-speaking countries has this policy).

Well yes, I am speaking out for those foreigners who wish to naturalize as Japanese citizens (those who truly consider Japan as their second home) but are still willing to retain the citizenship they’re born with.

As a non-Japanese myself, I think multiple citizenship has many benefits (access without visa, voting), but watch out for the downsides (e.g., taxes, conscription). Also, being a Japanese citizen is a privilege because they could access to 170+ countries without a visa at all. It means that there are some people who are willing to naturalize as Japanese citizens just to have visa-free access to these countries (EU, USA, AUS).

That’s it for now.

JAPANsociology

by Ji Soo Kim

An anonymous writer on the internet started her sentence with, “I am a Japanese mom and sold my son to France today.” The writer’s family has been living in France for 20 years, and she made her son acquire French citizenship so that he could  take state examination and receive state scholarship.

The writer said “people back home think we are no longer good patriots. But they cannot imagine how much we miss our home. The patriotism grows bigger when we live abroad.” Making a big choice, the mother wished Japan’s allowance of dual citizenship. She was scared that losing Japanese citizenship would have a negative effect on her son’s Japanese identity.

Having dual citizenship means that two countries recognize you as their citizen. Currently, Japan does not allow dual citizenship. Citizens of dual citizenship must choose one or the other before turning…

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