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Back to listMar 27, 2005

Chinese Journalist Writes About Daisaku Ikeda's Contributions to Sino-Japan Friendship

Forty Years As A Foreign Journalist in Japan

Li Dean, a journalist formerly with Xinhua News, China's largest news agency, contributed an essay, "The Foresight of Daisaku Ikeda's Speech," for a book titled Forty Years As A Foreign Journalist in Japan. The Association for the Promotion of Journalistic Pursuits in China and Japan (working translation) published the book in autumn 2004 to mark the 40th anniversary of an agreement entered between China and Japan on the protocols for journalists that each country dispatches to the other. [In April 1964, eight years prior to the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Japan, the two countries reached an agreement on the respective assignment of reporters to each country. In September of the same year, China and Japan exchanged journalists based on the conventions of that agreement.].

An overseas correspondent stationed in Japan for seven years, Mr. Li referred to Mr. Ikeda's speech at a Soka Gakkai Student Division meeting in 1968 that advocated for the normalization of Sino-Japan relations as "a precious gem whose brilliance withstands the test of time." Mr. Li said the speech was given at a time when "genuflection" was the prevalent attitude of the Japanese toward the U.S., and Mr. Ikeda was fully aware of possible backlash following the speech. Mr. Li remarked that Mr. Ikeda went ahead with his bold call, confident that it would be given an objective appraisal in the annals of history. Mr. Ikeda's foresight was proven correct when diplomatic relations between the two countries were resumed in 1972. Mr. Li claimed that history is fair and dispassionate, and nothing can escape its fair assessment. He stated that forty years after the speech, the world is learning to appreciate Mr. Ikeda's contributions to the promotion of friendship and goodwill between China and Japan.