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Sergiy Korsunsky, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Ukraine to Japan

“Russian operation to protect the civilians of the Donetsk and Lugansk People's Republics”
Mikhail Yurievich Galuzin, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Russian Federation 

"Responding to Russian attack on Ukraine"
Rahm Emanuel, U.S. Ambassador to Japan  



Putin, the Piece-Keeper



“Yeah, ‘Twosday’ because it’s Tuesday 2-22-22. Yeah, this only happens once every 100 years. President Biden was like, ‘I didn’t care then, I didn’t care now.’” — JIMMY FALLON

“The last time an all two date happened was Feb. 22, 1922. American women had just recently won the right to vote, Amelia Earhart bought her first plane. Now President Joe Biden just passed his first gallstone.” — JIMMY KIMMEL

コメディショーといえども日本と違って政治ネタはタブーではないので、ウクライナ情勢も取り上げています。プーチンのはpeace keeping operationではなく、piece keeping operationというくだりは英語学習者にもピンとくるジョークでした。

Colbert said Putin sought to keep the peace, and imitated Russia’s president: “I keep this piece of Ukraine. I keep that piece of Ukraine. I keep all the pieces of Ukraine.”

Putin, the Piece-Keeper
Russia’s imminent invasion of Ukraine was the talk of late night on Tuesday, when Stephen Colbert sought to answer why Vladimir Putin planned to send troops into another country.

“He claims it’s to carry out ‘peacekeeping functions,’ and it’s true,” Colbert said. “I keep this piece of Ukraine. I keep that piece of Ukraine. I keep all the pieces of Ukraine. I am piece-keeping,” he said, imitating Putin.


Philip Crowther is a British–German–Luxembourgian journalist, notable for being a polyglot. He can fluently speak in French, Spanish, Portuguese, English, German, and Luxembourgish. He is the White House correspondent for France 24, international affiliate correspondent for the Associated Press, and is a member of the White House Correspondents' Association.





By Megan Marples, CNN

(CNN)Good things come in twos. At least this Tuesday it does.

The date is February 22, 2022. When you write it, 2/22/22, it's a palindrome, meaning it reads the same forward and backward. It also falls on a Tuesday, which is now referred to as Twosday.
It's the most exceptional date in over a decade, according to palindrome enthusiast Aziz Inan. He's a professor of electrical engineering at the University of Portland in Oregon, and he has been studying palindrome dates for over 14 years.


回文 《前後どちらから読んでも同じ語(句)・文; 例:Madam, I’m Adam.》.

2, 2, 2, 2, I THINK THAT'S RIGHT.



英文見出し to不定詞は未来のこと


今、このブログを書いている時点では動画はWe will begin shortlyとあり、バイデンのスピーチは始まっていません。これから米国大統領は新たな制裁を発表するとメディアは報じています。これからの出来事なので見出しはto不定詞が使われています。セオリー通りですね。

Washington and its allies called the Kremlin’s recognition of two separatist regions a blunt defiance of international law that risks war. A top E.U. official said Russian troops had entered eastern Ukraine, but stopped short of calling it an “invasion.”

U.S. calls Russia’s actions an ‘invasion,’ readies new sanctions; Biden to speak

Biden to speak on Russia and Ukraine amid pressure from Congress on sanctions – live


President Biden is frequently late for big speeches and today is no exception. White House officials initially said he would speak at 2 p.m. about the crisis in Ukraine, but later sent out an update to the schedule that moved the speech to 1 p.m. By 1:40 p.m., reporters had yet to be called to the East Room for the remarks.
Confirmed: Joe Biden will give speech after nap time 
The speech was supposed to start at 1pm. Pres. Biden is always late. He and the White House staff should be on time. Punctuality is professionalism here. He shouldn't keep people waiting.
biden moved his 2pm speech to 1pm and now it’s 1:53pm and he’s not out yet. Can someone wake him up? My ipad is almost out of battery…
probably watching the Biden speech that was scheduled for 2 PM and then they moved it up to 1 PM and may miss the 2 PM original start time.
Biden is never on time. I bet his puppet masters are giving him last minute instructions.m now. They probably have him rehearse his speech before giving it and ordering him to take NO QUESTIONS! 
As usual, he’ll walk away turning his back on all Americans and reporters again.


Territorial integrity and sovereignty


今回の件で、領土一体性と主権(territorial integrity and sovereignty)という言葉が出てきました。

緊急で開かれた国連安保理での9分20秒あたりからのRosemary DiCarlo 国連事務次長の言葉です。あくまでregretを使っており、condemnではありません。

Mr. President,

It is with great concern and sadness that I brief the Council this evening on the unfolding dangerous situation in and around Ukraine.

In his statement today, the Secretary-General was clear: He considers the decision of the Russian Federation to recognize the independence of certain areas of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions to be a violation of the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine and inconsistent with the principles of the Charter of the United Nations. We very much regret this decision, which risks having regional and global repercussions.

We also regret the order today to deploy Russian troops into eastern Ukraine, reportedly on a “peacekeeping mission”.

ここで触れられている国連事務総長の声明はこちら。greatly concernedで、condemnではありません。

The Secretary‐General is greatly concerned by the decision by the Russian Federation related to the status of certain areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions of Ukraine. He calls for the peaceful settlement of the conflict in eastern Ukraine, in accordance with the Minsk Agreements, as endorsed by the Security Council in resolution 2202 (2015).

The Secretary‐General considers the decision of the Russian Federation to be a violation of the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine and inconsistent with the principles of the Charter of the United Nations.


LANA ZAKI NUSSEIBEH (United Arab Emirates) said her delegation’s position was expressed in its statement on 17 February.  Stressing the importance of de-escalating tensions, she called for good faith efforts to mitigate the risks and chart a diplomatic path consistent with international law.  The Minsk agreements form a good basis from which to build, she said.


ZHANG JUN (China) called on all parties concerned to exercise restraint and avoid any action that may fuel tensions.  Noting that the current situation in Ukraine is the result of “many complex factors” and that China “always makes its own position according to the merits of the matter itself”, he said that all countries should solve international disputes by peaceful means in line with the Charter of the United Nations.


VASSILY A. NEBENZIA (Russian Federation) said the Council had heard a number of emotional statements and categorical assessments of President Putin’s decree.  However, it must now focus on how to avoid war and force Ukraine to stop the shelling and provocations against Donetsk and Luhansk.  That decree followed declarations of independence by the regions in 2014, and only occurred now — despite high support for doing so in the regions and the Russian Federation.  The Government had asked Kyiv to listen to the aspirations of people in Donbas to teach their children their mother tongue, and who had fought against rather than alongside fascists in the Second World War.  Moscow had hoped for peace and welcomed the election of a new President of Ukraine who had promised to establish peace in Donbas — but who instead resorted to bellicose rhetoric and shelling, a flat refusal to speak with the representatives of Donetsk and Luhansk.  He reminded the Council that in all other conflicts, be it Libya or Yemen, all Member States insist on direct communication between the parties to conflict, but that Ukraine is exempted.  The Russian Federation is not a party to the Minsk agreements, he affirmed, which have been sabotaged by Ukraine “with the backing of our Western colleagues”.  While the Russian Federation remains open to a diplomatic solution, he condemned the negative role played by those colleagues, led by the United States, which had whipped up alarm over an impending invasion while sending weapons to Ukraine.  He stressed that refugees from the regions have fled to the Russian Federation and not Ukraine, with 68,000 people seeking shelter there.  Calling on Western colleagues to think twice and hold back the militaristic plans of Kyiv, he noted that most statements in the Council had not mentioned the nearly 4 million residents of Donbas.

参考までに、日本政府は Japan strongly condemns them.と強く非難していました。首相も会見で同様のことを語っていましたが、首相官邸はまだ英語版を出していませんでした。国際的な注目が高い案件ですから、英語版を素早く出すことも重要な気がします。

February 22, 2022

1. 2月21日、ロシアが「ドネツク人民共和国」及び「ルハンスク人民共和国」の「独立」を承認する大統領令に署名するとともに、ロシア軍に軍事基地等の建設・使用の権利を与える「友好協力相互支援協定」に署名しました。
1. On February 21, Russia signed a Presidential Decree recognizing the "independence" of the "Donetsk People's Republic" and the "Luhansk People's Republic", as well as the "Treaty on Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance" granting the Russian Armed Force the right to build and use military bases and others.

2. こうした行為は、ウクライナの主権及び領土一体性を侵害し、国際法に違反するものであり、決して認められるものではなく、強く非難します。
2. Such actions constitute an infringement of the Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity, and are in violation of international law. They are totally unacceptable and Japan strongly condemns them.

3. 我が国として、改めて事態の展開を深刻な懸念をもって注視していくとともに、G7を始めとする国際社会と連携し、制裁を含む厳しい対応につき調整を行っていきます。
3. Japan will continue to monitor the development in the situation with serious concern, and coordinate a tough response including sancitons in cooperation with the international community, including the G7.

国連憲章にはなんと書いてあるのか、確認します。sovereigntyやterritorial integrityが関係しそうなところを以下に抜粋しました。

第1章 目的及び原則 第2条
Chapter I: Purposes and Principles Article 2

1. The Organization is based on the principle of the sovereign equality of all its Members.
1. この機構は、そのすべての加盟国の主権平等の原則に基礎をおいている。

4. All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.
4. すべての加盟国は、その国際関係において、武力による威嚇又は武力の行使を、いかなる国の領土保全又は政治的独立に対するものも、また、国際連合の目的と両立しない他のいかなる方法によるものも慎まなければならない。

国連事務総長が触れていた安保理決議も全文が確認できます。これにはミンスク合意の全文も添付文書にありました。ここでもsovereignty, independence and territorial integrityが強調されています。

Adopted by the Security Council at its 7384th meeting, on 17 February 2015
The Security Council,
Recalling the purposes and principles enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations and reaffirming its full respect for the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Ukraine,
Expressing its grave concern at the tragic events and violence in eastern regions of Ukraine,
Reaffirming its Resolution 2166 (2014),

2015 年2月 17 日、安全保障理事会第 7384 回会合にて採択
国際連合憲章に記されている目的および原則を想起しそしてウクライナの主権、独立並びに領土保 全に対する安保理の十分な尊重を再確認し、


The President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin, the President of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko, the President of the French Republic, François Hollande, and the Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, Dr. Angela Merkel, reaffirm their full respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine. They firmly believe that there is no alternative to an exclusively peaceful settlement. They are fully committed to undertake all possible individual and joint measures to this end.

ロシア連邦大統領、ウラジミール・プーチン、ウクライナ大統領、ペトロ・ポロシェンコ、フラン ス共和国大統領、フランソワ・オランド、およびドイツ連邦共和国首相、アンゲラ・メルケル博士 は、ウクライナの主権および領土保全に対する彼らの十分な尊重を再確認する。彼らは、平和的解決に代わるものはまったくないことを固く信じている。彼らは、この目的のために、全ての可能な 個々のまた合同の措置を果たすことを十分に約束した。





Ellen Manning Mon, February 14, 2022, 11:02 PM·4 min read

A Labour MP has compared the actions of Vladimir Putin in Ukraine to those of Adolf Hitler in the 1930s.

The situation in the Ukraine is becoming increasingly fraught with Boris Johnson warning on Monday an invasion by Russian troops could take place within 48 hours.


The real parallel with the 1930s is surely Putin’s argument about Russians and Ukrainians being the same people, which is strongly reminiscent of Hitler’s argument about the Sudeten Germans.

先ほど取り上げたMunich AgreementでのSudeten割譲がこの記事では丁寧に説明されています。

"The real parallel with the 1930s is surely Putin’s argument about Russians and Ukrainians being the same people," he wrote on Twitter. "Which is strongly reminiscent of Hitler’s argument about the Sudeten Germans."

Hitler's annexation of the Sudetenland – the northern part of former Czechoslovakia – in 1938, came after Germany claimed that a majority of the region's population were ethnically German.

With the threat of war looming over the issue, a diplomatic agreement by the British, Italian, French and Czechoslovakia leaders ceded the region to Germany in the Munich Agreement.

However, far from avert war the agreement only served to prolong it and, in March 1939, Hitler reneged on his promise and staked his claim to the rest of Czechoslovakia.

As a result, the Munich Agreement is widely seen as one of the most notable moments of failed appeasement in recent history.




「西側の声をロシア支持の誇張に利用」のところで登場していたJohn Pilgerというジャーナリストが先の議員の発言を取り上げて記事にしていました。情報戦を仕掛けているのは、プロパガンダを仕掛けているのは西側諸国だというのです。 

The model is corporate spin, the currency of the age

The war hysteria that has rolled in like a tidal wave in recent weeks and months is the most striking example. Known by its jargon “shaping the narrative,” much if not most of it is pure propaganda.

The Russians are coming. Russia is worse than bad. Vladimir Putin is evil, “a Nazi like Hitler,” salivated Chris Bryant, a Labour member of the British Parliament. Ukraine is about to be invaded by Russia – tonight, this week, next week. The sources include an ex-CIA propagandist who now speaks for the US State Department and offers no evidence of his claims about Russian actions because “it comes from the US government.”


Today, neo-Nazi Ukraine is seldom mentioned. That the British are training the Ukrainian National Guard, which includes neo-Nazis, is not news. (See Matt Kennard’s Declassified report in Consortium News on February 15.) The return of violent, endorsed fascism to 21st-century Europe, to quote Harold Pinter, “never happened ... even while it was happening.”

On December 16, the United Nations tabled a resolution that called for “combating glorification of Nazism, neo-Nazism and other practices that contribute to fuelling contemporary forms of racism.” The only nations to vote against it were the United States and Ukraine.

このジャーナリストの経歴にはaward-winning journalist, filmmaker and authorとTOEICの頻出表現で紹介されていました。外国語学習だと読むのが精一杯でなかなか距離を置いて批判的に判断するのは難しいものです。というのも批判的に判断するためには、たくさんのものを読んで理解していないといけないからです。よーしウクライナ報道は日本ではダメダメだから、本場の英語のニュースを読むぞ!と意気込んで、こういうニュースに当たってしまうのは悲劇ですね。


Whiff of Munich in the air






13 February 2022·3-min read

The defence secretary has warned it is "highly likely" that Vladimir Putin will order an attack on Ukraine, despite ongoing talks to avert a war.

Ben Wallace also said there is a "whiff of Munich in the air" - an apparent reference to the agreement that allowed the German annexation of the Sudetenland in 1938, but failed to prevent the Second World War.


〜 Agrèement [Pàct]
[the ~]ミュンヘン協定(1938年英仏独伊4国で締結されたが, Hitlerが裏切り, 第2次世界大戦が勃発).

the Munich Agreement
also the Munich Pact 
an agreement signed in Munich in September 1938 between Britain, France, Germany and Italy. It allowed Germany to take control of a part of Czechoslovakia. The British Prime Minister, Neville Chamberlain, said that the agreement represented ‘peace in our time’, and at the time many people believed that it had saved Europe from war. However, in March 1939 Hitler took all of Czechoslovakia and in September the Second World War began. Now people sometimes call an agreement that has no value ‘another Munich’.

ミュンヘン会議で演説したあとにthe biggest war in Europe since 1945とジョンション首相も語っていたようです。





ロシア専門家のFiona HillがForeign Affairsの11-12月号に寄稿していました。こちらはウクライナ情勢ではなく、ロシアやアメリカが権威主義的な体制になっていることの危険性を指摘したものです。


How Putin Exploits American Dysfunction and Fuels American Decline
By Fiona Hill

Donald Trump wanted his July 2018 meeting in Helsinki with his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, to evoke memories of the momentous encounters that took place in the 1980s between U.S. President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev. Those arms control summits had yielded the kind of iconic imagery that Trump loved: strong, serious men meeting in distant places to hash out the great issues of the day. What better way, in Trump’s view, to showcase his prowess at the art of the deal? 

That was the kind of show Trump wanted to put on in Helsinki. What emerged instead was an altogether different sort of spectacle.

By the time of the meeting, I had spent just over a year serving in the Trump administration as deputy assistant to the president and senior director for European and Russian affairs on the National Security Council. Like everyone else who worked in the White House, I had, by then, learned a great deal about Trump’s idiosyncrasies. We all knew, for instance, that Trump rarely read the detailed briefing materials his staff prepared for him and that in meetings or calls with other leaders, he could never stick to an agreed-on script or his cabinet members’ recommendations. This had proved to be a major liability during those conversations, since it often seemed to his foreign counterparts as though Trump was hearing about the issues on the agenda for the first time. 


a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma



We spoke with Fiona Hill, a former Trump adviser, about how the Russian leader’s view of history has led him to the brink of war.
Feb. 18, 2022

Winston Churchill once described Russia as “a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma.” It’s a phrase that could equally apply to Vladimir Putin, the Kremlin’s leader, as the world awaits his next move on Ukraine.


For Russia, invasion would come with a heavy cost. So what's Moscow's endgame?
Murray Brewster · CBC News · Posted: Feb 16, 2022 4:00 AM ET | Last Updated: February 17

As the threat of an invasion of Ukraine again appeared to slip into a holding pattern, Western leaders and diplomats were left scrambling Tuesday to interpret conflicting signals coming out of Moscow.

Famously described by Britain's wartime prime minister Winston Churchill as "a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma," Russia put its willingness to play by its own rules on full display with a token withdrawal of some troops exercising in Crimea and the offer of renewed security dialogue with the West.


2/14/2022 7:30:00 PMShare This Episode

Condoleezza Rice: It's a pleasure to be with you.
Garard Baker: Let me start, obviously with this, as I said, you spent a lot of your career studying Russia, researching Russia, and then dealing with Russia as an official in the George H.W. Bush administration and then of course, as I said, as a senior official in the George W. Bush administration. So you've met Vladimir Putin many, many times, you know that famous riddle in a mystery wrapped inside an enigma or whatever it was at Winston Churchill, however else, Winston Churchill describe it. As we sit here, now, we are still very unclear about what exactly is going to happen on the border between Russia and Ukraine right now. And things could happen very quickly in the next few hours and days. But I wanted to ask you, first of all, Secretary, what's your sense, given what you know about Russia? What is Putin's strategic objective here? What does he really want?


マンガでもなぜかこの引用句を使っているものがありました。イディオム辞典でも取り上げています。引用の際には短めのバージョンa riddle wrapped in an enigmaもあるようです。

a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma
That which is so dense and secretive as to be totally indecipherable or impossible to foretell. It is from a line used by Winston Churchill to describe the intentions and interests of Russia in 1939: "I cannot forecast to you the action of Russia. It is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma; but perhaps there is a key. That key is Russian national interest." Many versions, variations, and appropriations of the quote, its structure, and its meaning have since been in use.
Political campaigns make my head hurt. They're just a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma.
I just don't have any idea what Mary expects from me. She's a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma.

a riddle wrapped in an enigma
That which is so dense and secretive as to be totally indecipherable or impossible to foretell. It is a shortened version of a line used by Winston Churchill to describe the intentions and interests of Russia in 1939: "I cannot forecast to you the action of Russia. It is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma; but perhaps there is a key. That key is Russian national interest." Many versions, variations, and appropriations of the quote, its structure, and its meaning have since been in use.
I can't make any sense of this calculus textbook, it's like a riddle wrapped in an enigma.
I just don't have any idea what Mary expects from me. She's a riddle wrapped in an enigma.

BBCが背景を含めて丁寧に説明してくれていました。それもそのはず、チャーチルのBBCの初めての戦時放送で登場したフレーズだとか。ドイツがポーランドに侵攻したのが1939年9月し、その1ヶ月後のことです。チャーチルは首相ではなく海軍大臣だった頃です。1940年の夏のスピーチ("Blood, Toil, Tears and Sweat"のことでしょうか?)ほど有名ではないとしていますが、ロシアの意図について触れた演説と説明しているので、このチャーチルのロシア観はそれだけ有名だということでしょう。

1 October 1939

On 1 October 1939 Winston Churchill gave his first wartime broadcast, on the recently created BBC Home Service. Churchill, the First Lord of the Admiralty, delivered his assessment of the first month of hostilities. He did not like the BBC - which had defied the government to carry statements from strike leaders during the 1926 general Strike - and had only broadcast infrequently before the war. However, he understood the power radio gave him to speak to the nation.

The speech is not as famous as the ones Churchill delivered as Prime Minister during the summer of 1940, but did contain his opinion of Russian intentions as “a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma”. Churchill spoke of the defence and fall of Poland against the onslaught of Germany and Russia.

He suggested that Russia’s natural interests would not coincide with those of Germany. He also asserted that the Germans were not winning the U-boat war, despite initial success. Churchill said the nation should prepare for a long conflict of 3 years and ended by likening the struggle against Nazism to the American Civil War fight against slavery.


Posted on September 24, 2011 by Callie
Reproduced below are the principal passages from Winston Churchill’s eagerly awaited broadcast speech of October 1st – this is a direct word for word copy as appeared in the War Illustrated.

横道に逸れますが、論点を三つあげるというおなじみのセオリーをチャーチルもthree important things have happened.という形で述べています。

The British Empire and the French Republic have been at war with Nazi Germany for a month tonight.  We have not yet come at all to the severity of fighting which is to be expected, but three important things have happened.

First Poland has been again overrun by two of the great Powers which held it in bondage for the last 150 years, but were unable to conquer the spirit of the Polish nation.


What is the second event of this first month? It is, of course, the assertion of the power of Russia. Russia has pursued a cold policy of self-interest.


What is the third event? Here I speak as First Lord of the Admiralty with special caution. It would seem that the U-boat attack upon the life of the British Isles has not so far proved successful.


I cannot forecast to you the action of Russia. It is a riddle wrapped in mystery inside an enigma; but perhaps there is a key. That key is Russian national interest.
It cannot be in accordance with the interest or safety of Russia that Nazi Germany should plant itself upon the shores of the Black Sea, or that is should overrun the Balkan States and subjugate the Slavonic peoples of south-eastern Europe. That would be contrary to the historic life-interests of Russia. But in this quarter of the world, the South East of Europe, these interests of Russia fall into the same channel as the interests of Britain and France. None of these three Powers can afford to see Rumania, Yugoslavia, Bulgaria and above all, Turkey, put under the German heel.


Jim Garrison : And who killed the President?
David Ferrie : Oh man, why don't you fuckin' stop it? Shit, this is too fuckin' big for you, you know that? Who did the president, who killed Kennedy, fuck man! It's a mystery! It's a mystery wrapped in a riddle inside an enigma! The fuckin' shooters don't even know! Don't you get it?










さそり 【〈蠍】

a small creature like an insect with eight legs, two front claws (= curved and pointed arms) and a long tail that curves over its back and can give a poisonous sting. Scorpions live in hot countries.



if you won’t be my brother, I’ll beat your skull in.



But is it all strategic?  Last July, President Putin published a strange missive about Ukraine and Russia and their historical relationship.  It present the kind of argument that makes historians wince.  The basic idea is that a thousand years ago there was a country called Rus, the most important city in Rus was Kyiv, and now a thousand years later Kyiv is the capital of Ukraine, and therefore Ukraine cannot be a real country, and everyone involved and their descendants must be Russians or a brotherly nation to Russians.  A historian confronted with this sort of mess is in the same unhappy situation as a zoologist in a slaughterhouse.  You do have expertise, and feel you have to say something, and so: oh yes, that is clearly a femur, and that cartilage was probably from a snout, and that there is a bit of liver; but this isn't your job, and you wish profoundly that you were somewhere else.  So I could say: Rus' was founded by Vikings, Moscow did not exist at the time, Kyiv was not ruled from Moscow until late in its history, the story of the brotherly nations is recent, as for that matter is national identity in the modern sense.  But you can't really engage in historical argument with people who are set on believing a myth, let alone with presidents who believe that the past is just there to confirm their present prejudices.

What is most striking about Putin’s essay is the underlying uncertainty about Russian identity. When you claim that your neighbors are your brothers you are having an identity crisis. There is a nice German saying about this: “Und willst Du nicht mein Bruder sein, so schlag' ich Dir den Schädel ein”: if you won’t be my brother, I’ll beat your skull in. That is Putin’s posture. In his essay, what Russia lacks is a future, and the nation is much more about the future than it is about the past.

Nationality is about the way that people in the present think about the what is to come.  If Ukrainians regard themselves as a national community with a future together in a state, then the issue is settled.  Historically speaking, the idea that a dictator in another country decides who is a nation and who is not is known as imperialism. 


Unlike Russia, Ukraine is a democracy.  Unlike Putin, Zelens'kyi came to office in a credible election where opposing candidates (one of them was the sitting president) had access to media and were able to compete.  (That is a fundamental difference between Ukraine and Russia: in Ukraine, presidents have lost elections and left office. That has not yet happened in Russia.) One of the central elements of Russia's traditional attacks on Ukraine has been that "Russian speakers" in Ukraine are subject to oppression.  This is conceptually misleading, in that most Ukrainians are bilingual in Ukrainian and Russian to one degree or another, and in that language does not determine identity (if it did, I'd be English).  But insofar as it is reasonable to talk about "Russian speakers" in Ukraine, the Ukrainian president himself is certainly one of them.  Zelens’kyi is from eastern Ukraine, and his dominant language is Russian.  So a "Russian speaker" in Ukraine can be elected president.  Indeed, "Russian speakers" in Ukraine are far more free in Ukraine in this respect than are "Russian speakers" in Russia.  In Russia, there is no democracy for anyone. 

Another line of Russian propaganda has been that Ukraine is uninhabitable for Jews.  Zelens'kyi is Jewish.  Incidentally, the prime minister when Zelens'kyi took office was also Jewish.  For several months in 2019, Ukraine was the only country (beyond Israel) to have a Jewish head of state and a Jewish head of government.  In Putin's essay, and more directly in a more recent article by his onetime political partner Dmitri Medvedev, this state of affairs is presented as evidence of Ukraine's lack of sovereignty and dependence on the West.  Medvedev's language crossed into antisemitic territory.





日本だと『権威主義の誘惑:民主政治の黄昏』の著書として知られているでしょうかアン・アプルボーム女史。スターリンによるウクライナの飢餓を書いたRed Famineの著者でもあります。アトランティックにプーチンとウクライナについて寄稿していました。

プーチンのモチベーションとして、NATOの東方拡大阻止、ウクライナとロシアとの親和性などが挙げられますが、アプルボームはプーチンが阻止しようとしているのは民主主義であると主張しています。最後の部分を紹介してしまっていますので、1から読み始めたい方はリンク先の記事をお読みください。Fiona Fillの論でもあるようですが、プーチンは1989年の冷戦終了時期にはロシアではなく東ドイツにいたので、ソ連崩壊までを経験しておらず、それが今の在り方に影響を及ぼしているとしています。

He is threatening to invade Ukraine because he wants democracy to fail—and not just in that country.
By Anne ApplebaumFebruary 4, 2022


And yet at the same time, Putin’s position is extremely precarious. Despite all of that power and all of that money, despite total control over the information space and total domination of the political space, Putin must know, at some level, that he is an illegitimate leader. He has never won a fair election, and he has never campaigned in a contest that he could lose. He knows that the political system he helped create is profoundly unfair, that his regime not only runs the country but owns it, making economic and foreign-policy decisions that are designed to benefit the companies from which he and his inner circle personally profit. He knows that the institutions of the state exist not to serve the Russian people, but to steal from them. He knows that this system works very well for a few rich people, but very badly for everyone else. He knows, in other words, that one day, prodemocracy activists of the kind he saw in Dresden might come for him too.


Putin is preparing to invade Ukraine again—or pretending he will invade Ukraine again—for the same reason. He wants to destabilize Ukraine, frighten Ukraine. He wants Ukrainian democracy to fail. He wants the Ukrainian economy to collapse. He wants foreign investors to flee. He wants his neighbors—in Belarus, Kazakhstan, even Poland and Hungary—to doubt whether democracy will ever be viable, in the longer term, in their countries too. Farther abroad, he wants to put so much strain on Western and democratic institutions, especially the European Union and NATO, that they break up. He wants to keep dictators in power wherever he can, in Syria, Venezuela, and Iran. He wants to undermine America, to shrink American influence, to remove the power of the democracy rhetoric that so many people in his part of the world still associate with America. He wants America itself to fail.

These are big goals, and they might not be achievable. But Putin’s beloved Soviet Union also had big, unachievable goals. Lenin, Stalin, and their successors wanted to create an international revolution, to subjugate the entire world to the Soviet dictatorship of the proletariat. Ultimately, they failed—but they did a lot of damage while trying. Putin will also fail, but he too can do a lot of damage while trying. And not only in Ukraine.

Timothy SnyderとかRichard Haasとかもウクライナについて書いているようなので、色々読んでみようと思います。


On the Historical Unity of Russians and Ukrainians






July 12, 2021, 17:00

Today, the ”right“ patriot of Ukraine is only the one who hates Russia. Moreover, the entire Ukrainian statehood, as we understand it, is proposed to be further built exclusively on this idea. Hate and anger, as world history has repeatedly proved this, are a very shaky foundation for sovereignty, fraught with many serious risks and dire consequences.

All the subterfuges associated with the anti-Russia project are clear to us. And we will never allow our historical territories and people close to us living there to be used against Russia. And to those who will undertake such an attempt, I would like to say that this way they will destroy their own country.

The incumbent authorities in Ukraine like to refer to Western experience, seeing it as a model to follow. Just have a look at how Austria and Germany, the USA and Canada live next to each other. Close in ethnic composition, culture, in fact sharing one language, they remain sovereign states with their own interests, with their own foreign policy. But this does not prevent them from the closest integration or allied relations. They have very conditional, transparent borders. And when crossing them the citizens feel at home. They create families, study, work, do business. Incidentally, so do millions of those born in Ukraine who now live in Russia. We see them as our own close people.

Russia is open to dialogue with Ukraine and ready to discuss the most complex issues. But it is important for us to understand that our partner is defending its national interests but not serving someone else's, and is not a tool in someone else's hands to fight against us.


ウクライナ情勢での off-ramp


Nick Schifrin:
Now, senior U.S. officials who I talk to are as concerned as they are, given the things that you're describing, and the capacities of Russia that are on the border, but they do say that Vladimir Putin has not made a final decision yet.

And, certainly, the U.S., the West, in what they say is a united way are trying to come up with a Russian off-ramp. But those things that the West are offering Russia are far from what Russia's core demands are.

So do you see any possible diplomatic off-ramp in this moment?

Michael Kofman:

I have sadly been pessimistic all along looking some months out at this.

And I have seen the likelihood for diplomacy to succeed is not very good, fairly slim. Now, of course, I agree. We don't know if Vladimir Putin has made a decision. That's very true. Is there a chance for diplomacy to succeed? Well, I think the window for it is unfortunately closing, right?


⦅米・南ア⦆(高速道路からの) 出口車線

North American English, South African English 
a road used for driving off a major road such as an interstate


We have both served in senior policymaking roles in our governments, and while we no longer represent our respective governments, we think we have identified an off-ramp for this standoff that could work for our respective countries.

We see four elements to a solution. First, restrictions on military operations along the NATO/Russia border. Second, a moratorium on NATO expansion eastward. Third, resolution of ongoing and frozen conflicts in the former Soviet space and the Balkans. And fourth, modernization of the 1975 Helsinki Accords, which created a pan-European forum and articulated agreed principles of interstate relations to undergird East-West detente.

こちらの記事でdiplomatic off-rampとあるように武力での解決ではなく、外交面で収める方策を指すことが多そうです。

By Rosalind Mathieson 2022年2月9日 20:11 JST

By submitting my information, I agree to the Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.
As the West looks for a diplomatic off-ramp from tensions with Russia over Ukraine, there’s one grouping that’s again coming into focus.

Amid the warnings over Moscow’s military buildup near the Ukraine border (which it has sustained for months, while denying any plans to invade), there’s a push to re-energize the “Normandy Format,” named for the location of its first informal meeting.




2022年2月9日 15:13 発信地:キエフ/ウクライナ

【2月9日 AFP】ロシア軍がウクライナ国境付近で部隊を増強し緊張が高まる中、ロシアのウラジーミル・プーチン(Vladimir Putin)大統領が8日、ウクライナを「私の美しきもの」と呼んだ。

 プーチン氏は同日未明、エマニュエル・マクロン(Emmanuel Macron)仏大統領との共同記者会見で、ウクライナのウォロディミル・ゼレンスキー(Volodymyr Zelensky)大統領が同政府軍と親ロシア派武装勢力の停戦を定めた「ミンスク合意」を好ましくないと述べたことを批判。





AFP, Moscow

“Like it or not, beauty, you have to put up with it,” Putin said, using an expression that rhymes in Russian.

The remark sparked heated online debate, with some suggesting Putin was using the kind of language that justifies rape, while others said it was just a form of an expression used to scold children.




Bill Bostock Feb 8, 2022, 7:52 PM
Putin criticized Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky for failing to implement the protocol, and referenced an obscene song lyric to demonstrate what he wanted.

"Whether you like it or don't like it, bear with it, my beauty," Putin said.

Russia experts noted that Putin appeared to be quoting from "Sleeping Beauty in a Coffin" by the Soviet-era punk rock group Red Mold.

"Sleeping beauty in a coffin, I crept up and fucked her. Like it, or dislike it, sleep my beauty," the English translation of the Russian lyrics reads.

Спит красавица в гробу,
Я подкрался и ебу.
Нравится - не нравится,
Спи, моя красавица.

There's a beauty sleeping in a coffin,
I sneak up and fuck.
Like it - don't like it,
Sleep, my beauty.



Analysis by Nathan Hodge, CNN
Updated 2251 GMT (0651 HKT) February 8, 2022

Folklore or not, the remark laid bare Putin's bullysome attitude toward Ukraine, which the president has made clear he doesn't see as a real country. And it was also reminder of a strain of unrepentant misogyny in both Putin's politics and his public remarks.

For starters, the talk about forcing a "beauty" lie back and take abuse is coming from the same person who, exactly five years ago, decriminalized forms of domestic violence.

Putin's trash talk pops again and again, and has reportedly included making light of rape.

The Russian leader's tough-guy talk is sometimes explained away as a sort of folksiness that is a performance for a domestic audience, but Putin's choice of verb терпеть in his remarks on Monday (to take it, or to endure) shows an ugly underlying sentiment about the role of women.


Q    Then I want to talk about something that Russian President Putin said —

MS. PSAKI:  Sure.

Q    — the other day.  He made what many Russian speakers interpreted as a rape joke directed at Ukraine.  Given that diplomacy is all about talking, how does the administration view talk like this?  Does it shorten the diplomatic off-ramp because it’s a pretty undiplomatic thing to say?  And has the White House communicated to the Kremlin, you know, “Yo, that’s not cool”?

MS. PSAKI:  Well, first, I would say that any joke about rape would certainly be something that everyone in this government would be outraged by, whether it’s happening from the mouth of a U.S. official or a foreign official. 

I’d also note that we have never held back in our concern about the lack of truthfulness of some of the statements that come out of the mouth of President Putin and members of the Russian leadership, and also the bellicose rhetoric that has come out of their mouths.  So, we have never held back on our concern.  And certainly, that joke would not be something that we —




プーチンの専門家として著名なのがFiona Hill氏で著書は邦訳もされているようで、欧米では引っ張りだことのようです。New York Timesにも寄稿していました。今回の出来事は2008年のウクライナのNATO加盟申請まで遡るようです。

Jan. 24, 2022 By Fiona Hill

We knew this was coming.

“George, you have to understand that Ukraine is not even a country. Part of its territory is in Eastern Europe and the greater part was given to us.” These were the ominous words of President Vladimir Putin of Russia to President George W. Bush in Bucharest, Romania, at a NATO summit in April 2008.

Mr. Putin was furious: NATO had just announced that Ukraine and Georgia would eventually join the alliance. This was a compromise formula to allay concerns of our European allies — an explicit promise to join the bloc, but no specific timeline for membership.

At the time, I was the national intelligence officer for Russia and Eurasia, part of a team briefing Mr. Bush. We warned him that Mr. Putin would view steps to bring Ukraine and Georgia closer to NATO as a provocative move that would likely provoke pre-emptive Russian military action. But ultimately, our warnings weren’t heeded.


As I have seen over two decades of observing Mr. Putin, and analyzing his moves, his actions are purposeful and his choice of this moment to throw down the gauntlet in Ukraine and Europe is very intentional. He has a personal obsession with history and anniversaries. December 2021 marked the 30th anniversary of the dissolution of the Soviet Union, when Russia lost its dominant position in Europe. Mr. Putin wants to give the United States a taste of the same bitter medicine Russia had to swallow in the 1990s. He believes that the United States is currently in the same predicament as Russia was after the Soviet collapse: grievously weakened at home and in retreat abroad. He also thinks NATO is nothing more than an extension of the United States. Russian officials and commentators routinely deny any agency or independent strategic thought to other NATO members. So, when it comes to the alliance, all of Moscow’s moves are directed against Washington.


February 11, 20224:25 PM ET

SHAPIRO: Putin has had these demands for a long time, and so why do you think he's putting this pressure on now?

HILL: He sees a moment that perhaps will not return, where it's probably a weak point for Europe, with changes over in government in Germany, for example, fights with the U.K. after Brexit, Poland and other countries being on the odds with the European Union, France about to have an election.

He also sees the United States a lot weaker domestically than it has before. The withdrawal from Afghanistan, for example, is a sort of a twofold view for Putin - weakness on the United States' part but also a willingness to pull out over the heads of Europeans without consultation. And he sees in the person of Joe Biden someone who understands European security, knows the backstory and the history of all of this and may be somebody who is more conducive to being able to negotiate with than, you know, say, President Trump if he comes back again in 2024.

Plus, Putin himself has to get reelected in 2024 for the presidency. He wants to, you know, as he said, stay in power longer, and he wants to show a big win to his own population.


SHAPIRO: As you've described it, Putin holds a pretty good hand here. What do you think the biggest risks for him are?

HILL: Well, there are a lot of risks here in terms of miscalculating. I think one is that, you know, perhaps didn't even expect the unified response that we've had from the West.

But, you know, in terms of Ukraine, it's highly possible that they didn't envisage that there would be - and still maybe don't - a major response from Ukraine in terms of Ukrainian military or the standing army and of the civilian militias, for example. They probably didn't foresee that there would be such a swift movement by the United States and European allies to, you know, pull together a response. They were definitely caught off guard by the United States first announcing that it was seeing this massive troop buildup.

There's also the prospect of miscalculation on the domestic front. It's not entirely clear that the Russian population would be particularly behind a major military operation in Ukraine, or even, you know, a massive confrontation with the West, absent some really clear pretext. And this could, you know, backfire immensely for Russian interests in Europe, which are not just security interests but economic and trade and, you know, people to people, not just Russian oligarchs living, you know, in Europe, but, you know, ordinary Russian citizens and ordinary businesspeople and students, you know, and other citizens, for example.

ロシア市民はウクライナとの戦争になってもプーチンを支持し続けるかについて慎重な見通しを書いていたのが、Foreign Affairsの次の記事です。ただでさえ制裁で苦しんでいるのに、命の犠牲を伴うようになれば、いくら抑圧的な社会でも持たないのではないだろうかという見立てです。

Why an Attack on Ukraine Might Erode Putin’s Support
By Andrei Kolesnikov February 9, 2022




YutaはKindle UnlimitedでTIMEを読むようになってから、気づいた時に読むという形になってしまったTIME。強制的に紙の雑誌が届いていた頃に比べるとすっかりご無沙汰することも多くなりました。

たまに見るとDouble issueという合併号が多かったので、少し調べてみたらオフィシャルサイトでも以下のように書いていました。

6 months ago Updated
TIME has moved to publishing 95+ page double issues every two weeks throughout 2021 (except August and December). This will allow us to continue to cover the increasingly complex world in more depth—both in the pages of the magazine and with even more timeliness online.

こちらはイギリスの雑誌購読のサイトですが、こちらはpractical bi-weeklyという説明をしています。隔週としていないのは、50週分の料金をとっているためだからでしょうか。

Get a TIME Magazine subscription today for your practical bi-weekly digest on important issues of the day, as well as honest and enlightening profiles of people in the news.  Delivered direct to your door, TIME Magazine sparks thought and conversation, brought straight to you from TIME’s journalists and photographers on the front lines of all the top news stories.

TIME is published bi-weekly (except for last week of December) by Time Magazine UK Ltd. Your first issue mails in 4-6 weeks. TIME will be delivered in the form of double issues, which count as two. Frequency is subject to change without notice.

今でもPerson of the Yearとかがニュースになっていますが、もう昔のようなTimeではないかもしれません。






第二次世界大戦下のポーランドで2.500人ものユダヤ人を救った女性、イレーナセンドラー。無名のソーシャルワーカーにすぎない彼女が、どうしてそれほど多くの人々を救うことができたのか? 終戦後,長い間。彼女の偉業は歴史の陰に埋もれ、注目されないままだった。しかし1999年,ポーランドから遠く離れたアメリカで、突如として脚光を浴びることとなる。彼女を見いだしたのは、アメリカの平凡な女子高生たちだった。




I stand corrected.



Whoopi Goldberg:
I said that the Holocaust wasn't about race, and it was instead about man's immunity to man.
But it was indeed about race, because Hitler and the Nazis considered Jews to be an inferior race.
Now, words matter. And mine are no exception. I regret my comments, as I said. And I stand corrected. I also stand with the Jewish people, as they know and you all know, because I have always done that.


I stand corrected.
⦅正式⦆私が間違っていました, 自分の誤りを認めます
I stand corrected on that point.



“If the Klan is coming down the street and I’m standing with a Jewish friend…I’m gonna run. But if my friend decides not to run, they’ll get passed by most times, because you can’t tell who’s Jewish,” she said. “It’s not something that people say, ‘Oh that person is Jewish.'”
I stand corrected.



The “racial” distinctions between master and slave may be more familiar to Americans, but they were and are no more real than those between Gentile and Jew.
By Adam SerwerFebruary 4, 2022

Whoopi Goldberg, the actor and a co-host of The View, stumbled into a public-relations nightmare for ABC on Monday when she insisted that “the Holocaust wasn’t about race.” After an episode of The Late Show With Stephen Colbert aired in which she opined that “the Nazis were white people, and most of the people they were attacking were white people,” she was temporarily suspended from The View. She has apologized for her remarks.


In the United States, physical distinctions between most Black and most white people have misled some into thinking that the American conception of race is somehow more “real” than the racial fictions on which the Nazis based their campaign of extermination. Applying the American color line to Europe, the Holocaust appears merely to be a form of sectarian violence, “white people” attacking “white people,” which seems nonsensical. But those persecuting Jews in Europe saw Jews as beastly subhumans, an “alien race” whom they were justified in destroying in order to defend German “racial purity.” The “racial” distinctions between master and slave may be more familiar to Americans, but they were and are no more real than those between Gentile and Jew.


Karen Attiah

The images conjured by the Holocaust are understandably mostly of lighter-skinned, European-looking victims, which beside the Jews included Polish Catholics and other Slavic populations. Other victimized racial groups are rarely talked about. The Nazis also eliminated up to half a million Roma — a third of Europe’s Roma population — a nomadic group that to this day faces discrimination. Also much less talked about are how Afro-Germans and others of African descent living in Germany were persecuted, including by forced sterilizations and internment in concentration camps. In fact, Hitler blamed Jews for “bringing Negroes into the Rhineland, with the ultimate idea of bastardizing the white race.” Not only have these groups been left out from many Holocaust narratives, but Blacks in particular have largely been absent from public memorials to victims of the Holocaust.

In the words of W.E.B. Du Bois: “There was no Nazi atrocity ... which the Christian civilization or Europe had not been practicing against colored folk in all parts of the world in the name of and for the defense of a Superior Race born to rule the world.”


Even before the Nazis came to power, Germany carried out a systemic genocide in its colony of South West Africa — a crime against humanity that it has only recently (and reluctantly) come to admit. The Nazi tactics of detention camps, forced labor and sterilizations, and killings echoed colonial Germany’s attempt to eliminate the Herero and the Nama people in what is now Namibia in the early 20th century.


We must remember the victims and the survivors of African descent who were persecuted by Nazis because their skin was darker.
By  Chika Oduah, Contributor  02/16/2016 04:38pm EST | Updated December 6, 2017


2019年8月7日 デイミアン・ゼイン、BBCニュース

Du Boisのところの引用が少し分かりにくかったのですが、以下を読むと分かりました。

Eve Darian­Smith

Du Bois viewed German anti-Semitism and American racism against blacks as emerging out of the same historical phenomenon.28 Specifically, he located these racist practices in a historical continuum, and interpreted the German atrocities of the Second World War as an outcome of an earlier phase of European colonialism that witnessed the degradation and oppression of native peoples and gave rise to the modern theory of race. According to Du Bois, ‘There was no Nazi atrocity – concentration camps, wholesale maiming and murder, defilement of women or ghastly blasphemy of childhood – which the Christian civilization of Europe had not long been practicing against colored folk in all parts of the world in the name of and for the defense of a Superior Race born to rule the world.’29 For him, the pain and suffering imposed on others at the margins of empire set up the psychological and cultural conditions in which violence and suffering could re-emerge in the centres of Western power in Europe and the United States. As Du Bois remarked in a 1944 essay titled ‘Prospect of a world without race conflict’: ‘The supertragedy of this war is the treatment of the Jews in Germany. There has been nothing comparable to this in modern history. Yet its techniques and its reasoning have been based upon a race philosophy similar to that which has dominated both Great Britain and the United States in relation to colored people.’30



CRT meets Maus




Michael CavnaFebruary 1, 2022 at 1:15 p.m. EST




Earlier this month, Spiegelman's award-winning graphic novel Maus was removed from an eighth-grade English-language arts curriculum in Tennessee after the McMinn County Board of Education unanimously voted to pull the book over concerns about profanity and a drawing of a nude woman.


In a statement sent to Newsweek, the McMinn County Board of Education said, "Taken as a whole, the Board felt this work was simply too adult-oriented for use in our schools."

The statement continued, "We do not diminish the value of Maus as an impactful and meaningful piece of literature, nor do we dispute the importance of teaching our children the historical and moral lessons and realities of the Holocaust."

The board has asked administrators "to find other works that accomplish the same educational goals in a more age-appropriate fashion."


Dana Milbank  January 28, 2022 at 5:31 p.m. EST

If we see any more snowflakes appear in red states, the National Weather Service is going to have to issue a blizzard warning.


2 (informal, disapproving) a person who believes they have special qualities and should receive special treatment; a person who is too sensitive to criticism and easily upset

2019/03/16 10:00 鈴木あずき
snowflake generation【傷つきやすい世代】


And that’s just the beginning of the thought-police problem. PEN America, a free-speech organization, reports that in the first three weeks of January 2022, 71 “gag-order” bills banning the teaching of certain concepts were introduced or pre-filed in state legislatures across the country. Since January of last year, 12 such bills have become law in 10 GOP-run states, and 88 bills are still working their way through the legislative process. Virtually all of them have been sponsored by Republicans.

Eighty-four of the active bills target K-12 schools, 38 target colleges and universities, 48 include mandatory punishments, and 15 give students, parents or citizens the right to sue schools. So much for the professed Republican devotion to combatting frivolous lawsuits.

Among the 10 states that have adopted gag laws, Iowa prohibits “specific defined concepts” from being in the public school curriculum; North Dakota specifically bans “critical race theory”; New Hampshire and South Carolina make sure schools do not “inculcate” students in certain ways; and Texas bans the “1619 Project.” The other states are Arkansas, Oklahoma, Idaho and, of course, Tennessee. One of Arizona’s laws, struck down in court, banned “instruction that presents any form of blame or judgment on the basis of race, ethnicity or sex.”

コラムはまた皮肉を利かせたりしますね。ここではsnowflakeとかcancel cultureだと人種やジェンダーなど意識高い系wokenessの動きを右派は批判していたよねとまず語ります。

Not long ago, those on the right howled about ultrasensitive “snowflakes” and “cancel culture” when woke activists sought to replace racially insensitive texts. And it’s true progressives have gone overboard at times; the Mukilteo, Wash., school board is the latest to remove the classic “To Kill a Mockingbird” from its reading list because of racially offensive terms.


Canceling a coloring book? Who’s a snowflake now?






Culture Apr 24, 2015 Harano Jōji [Profile]
政治・外交 文化 2015.04.10 原野 城治 【Profile】

Washington DC’s beloved cherry blossoms are a well-known symbol of US-Japanese friendship. Japan’s gift 103 years ago of the trees that stand along the Potomac River is an oft-told tale. Less well known is the US gift of flowering dogwoods to Japan three years later in reciprocation.



A Lone Survivor
The gift from the United States whetted Japanese interest in flowering dogwoods, and the trees now beautify settings throughout Japan. But of the 60 saplings in the 1915 gift, only one tree remains. It stands on the grounds of Tokyo Metropolitan Engei High School, a horticultural school in the Fukasawa district of Setagaya, Tokyo. The dogwood occupies a spot slightly apart from the ginkgo trees that line the school’s entry walkway. It towers some eight meters tall―twice the height of the dogwoods commonly seen along roadsides and elsewhere in Tokyo.

Engei High School hosted a ceremony on April 10 to mark the centennial of the gift of dogwoods. Among the dignitaries in attendance was the US ambassador to Japan, Caroline Kennedy. Taking a spade in hand, she planted a dogwood sapling as part of the ceremony.

Also getting into the centennial spirit was Japan Post. It teamed with the US Postal Service in Japan’s first-ever paired issuance of commemorative postage stamps with another nation.







In an aside, Munemura suggests a possibly evangelical factor in the US gift of dogwoods. He cites a legend that identifies dogwood as the wood used in the cross on which Jesus Christ was crucified. In the legend, God curtails the dogwood trees’ height so they might never again be used for that purpose.

Dogwood trees are indeed (and fortunately!) too small to yield pillars or beams for crucifixions. But the hard wood makes excellent skewers, which Japanese use in broiling fish and other food items.


イエス・キリストが掛かった十字架にはハナミズキの木が使われて、そのため以前は大きかったこの木は小さくなり、花は4弁で十字架に似ていて、花弁にくぎを刺された傷跡があるという伝説がある。[8] この伝説の出どころはアメリカ合衆国と推察され、「When Christ was on earth, the dogwood grew / To a towering size with a lovely hue.」で始まる詩があり、これは1954年に「The Victoria Advocate」紙(1954年4月18日)に発表されたことまでは分かっている。20世紀よりも前にはない伝説で、キリスト教聖書には書かれておらず、またハナミズキは北アメリカ原産でイスラエルには自生していない。 


Since I was a little kid,every spring around Easter, I have heard people repeat the story of how the cross used to crucify Jesus was made from a dogwood tree. I never really questioned that story until today.

Dogwood blooms are one of my favorite things about spring. I like seeing them scattered in the woods and in peoples yards. I guess it's because we had several dogwoods on our property as a kid. Every spring, I would hear folks talk about how the cross used to crucify Jesus was made from dogwood and how the flowers were marked with sighs of the nails. Then how the mighty dogwood was "cursed" to be thin and crooked for all time.