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Old 02-04-2008, 01:53 AM
cherry cherry is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2008
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Default Japan's Conspiracy (32-2)

Japan's Conspiracy (32-2)

== Funny Political Puns (2) ===

Previously I talked about three cases of politicians below (See Note 1).

Former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan

Kenyan former president Daniel Arap Moi

UN special envoy to Myanmar Ibrahim Gambari

And this time, let me pick up two cases more.

=== Olusegun Obasanjo ===

His last name "Obasanjo" sounds very funny for Japanese. "Obasan" literally means "an old woman" in Japanese. But it is in fact a funny and insulting expression. If you use this word to a Japanese young woman, I'm sure she will go mad.

Mr. Obasanjo is a retired Nigerian Army general and former President of Nigeria. He has visited Japan more than 10 times. He is not only a Japanophile, but also a good friend with Mr. Koizumi. He rushed to Japan to say "Thank you" to Koizumi when Koizumi was going to resign in September 2006 (See Note 2).

A growing number of critics within Nigeria have accused Obasanjo's government of selectively targeting his anti-corruption drive against political opponents and ethnic militants, ignoring growing concerns about wide-scale corruption within his own inner political circle (See Note 3).

=== Barack Obama ===

There are at least nine places whose names are Obama. It literally means a small beach in Japanese. Obama is a good old name. Obama city in Fukui is near to Kyoto (See Note 4). It has many historical relics related to emperors. Obama hot spring is another old tourist destination (See Note 5).

Japanese borrow the word "barrack" and pronounce "baraku" in Japanese in the same meaning. So, his name is very easy for them to remember.

He came from Hawaii. Hawaii is a place which has complicated history between Japan. Japanese TV and newspaper companies obviously support him. His word "Change" always reminds me of the same catch phrase Koizumi once used (See Note 6).

<postscript 1>

The name of Hillary Clinton, another presidential candidate, is a little difficult for Japanese to pronounce. And some Japanese confuse her last name with Japanese sweet "kurikinton", mashed sweet potato with sweet chestnuts (See Note 7).

By the way, there was a funny episode between Bill Clinton and Japanese former prime minister Yoshiro Mori (See Note 8).


in July 2007

Prime Minister Mori was given some basic English conversation training before he visits Washington and meets with President Bill Clinton. The instructor told Mori "Prime Minister, when you shake hand with President Clinton, please say 'how are you'.

Then Mr Clinton should say "I am fine, and you?" Now you should say 'me too'. Afterwards we, translators, will do all the work for you."

It looks quite simple, but the truth is ....

When Mori met Clinton, he mistakenly said "Who Are You?" Mr Clinton was a bit shocked but still managed to react with humor: "Well, I am Hillary's husband, ha ha..."Then Mori replied confidently "Me too, ha ha ha.."

Then there was a long silent moment in the meeting room.


<postscript 2>

I have little information about the presidential candidates in the US. Yet I know that its process is much better than that of Japan. As the history of Greece and the Roman Empire shows, progressive political systems often suffer interruption and subversion. I hope the election will go smoothly.

I respect US presidents simply because they are really elected by Americans.

----------(Note 1)-----------------

Japan's Conspiracy (32)

----------(Note 2)-----------------

Mr. Obasanjo, President of Nigeria, to Visit Japan


----------(Note 3)-----------------

Olusegun Obasanjo

----------(Note 4)-----------------

Obama, Fukui

----------(Note 5)-----------------

Obama Onsen (Obama Hot Spring)

----------(Note 6)-----------------

Barack Obama

----------(Note 7)-----------------

kurikinton (mashed sweet potato with sweet chestnuts)

----------(Note 8)-----------------

How are you?

Japan's Conspiracy (1)
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