Shintaro Ishihara: a politician who peddled in hatred

TOKYO – “Until I die, I will say what I want, do what I want and I want to be hated by people when I die,” Shintaro Ishihara, former governor of Tokyo, said at a press conference on his retirement from political life in December of 2014.

There has rarely been a politician in Japan who was so deserving of having their wishes granted. When the former governor of Tokyo, pulp fiction writer, and ultranationalist Ishihara died this week, he left behind a trail of soured relations between Japan and its neighbors.

However, whether you liked him for his outspoken Trump-before-Trump antics or despised him for his troublemaking rhetoric, the damage he created with his attempt to annex the Senkaku Islands and provoke the government of China lives on, even now.

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