Akiko Iwata, who said that she learned of the shooting the day before the incident, is still “safe post-Rurei Miura. | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Akiko Iwata, who said that she learned of the shooting the day before the incident, is still “safe post-Rurei Miura.

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Akiko Iwata (quoted from her office’s website)

On July 8, one year after the shooting of former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, journalist Akiko Iwata appeared on “Wake Up” (NTV), from anchor and lawyer Shuya Nomura,

She said, “For a long time, I have been covering former Prime Minister Abe. His relationship with the so-called Unification Church. Have you known about it for quite some time?”

He asked me, “No, unfortunately,

I’m sorry to say that when I was a reporter, I was not aware of it at all.

I was not aware of it at all when I was a reporter,” he revealed.

He then added, “The real irony is that I only found out about the shooting because I was a reporter,

The real irony is that I only learned of the relationship during my last phone call the night before the shooting.

I happened to have received information that a former secretary in the first cabinet had received a blessing at the Unification Church a few days earlier, and when I happened to confirm this on the phone at that time, Prime Minister Abe said something like, ‘It’s not a problem. There’s no problem,’ and that’s when I first learned about it.”

I knew about it only at that time. On August 8, Toru Hasuiike, the brother of Kaoru Hasuiike, who was abducted by North Korea and returned to Japan, and former executive director of the Association of Families of Abductees, responded to this by updating his Twitter account and saying, “No way!

No kidding! You were a close and friendly reporter, weren’t you?

He made a sweeping statement on Twitter on August 8, saying, “No way! On the Internet, he said, “How dare you shamelessly lie about it?

I thought, “How can he lie so shamelessly?

Since he prided himself on being the closest journalist to Shinzo Abe, it would be a lie to say that he was unaware of his relationship with the former Unification Church. If it is true, then his ability as a journalist is questionable.

The story is too badly written. If you are going to tell lies, don’t call yourself a journalist.

If you tell lies, don’t call yourself a journalist.

After graduating from the University of Tokyo with a degree in law, Mr. Iwata joined NHK. Since 2001, he has appeared on news programs as a commentator in charge of politics, and has become widely known among Japanese people. And because he covered former Prime Minister Abe for more than 20 years, he was called “the reporter closest to Shinzo Abe,” a title he has not lost since going freelance. Iwata’s claim that he was unaware of the relationship between Abe and the Unification Church was met with a resounding “No, that’s not true.

He was criticized for saying that he did not know about it, and was asked, “How can you call yourself a political journalist? But if he had said he knew, he would have been denounced as a political journalist for not pursuing the matter. If he had said he knew, he would have been denounced as a political journalist for not pursuing the issue. If he had answered, “I knew just before,” he would have been accused of being a political journalist for not pursuing the matter. Her “Closest to Shinzo Abe” was her “selling point,” but now it has become her “Achilles’ heel.

Ruri Miura, 42, an international political scientist, is one of the most popular female political commentators in Japan, but due to her husband’s scandals, she has had no TV exposure. Iwata was expected to fill this vacancy as a post-Miura commentator, but her reputation has been damaged by her comments, and her qualifications as a political journalist are being called into question. Some say that television has begun to shun her as a “useless” person.

However, a producer said, “A blunder of this magnitude is unlikely to have any impact.”

Mr. Iwata left NHK last year and became a freelance producer and belongs to a major entertainment production company.

In this day and age, even if you are an NHK political commentator, it is not so easy to get TV work right after quitting the station. The reason he belonged to a major entertainment production company is probably because he wanted to take advantage of a “career change” in that genre. Now that Mr. Miura is gone, Mr. Iwata is said to be the most promising candidate. Although he made some gaffes this time, he is not as crazy as Mr. Miura. He is not as fishy as Mr. Miura.

In the case of Mr. Miura, although he claims to be an international political scientist, there were many questionable points. Ms. Iwata has long experience as a political reporter and has a clear stance. TV stations love such a beautiful and controversial person. Not the people in the field, but the people at the top in particular. It may sound a bit condescending, but it is a clear fact. Ms. Iwata is considering appearing on variety shows in the future, so perhaps this incident should be considered as a joke.

Her profile on the agency’s website says it best,

I would like to show not only the solid image I have at NHK, but also the candid side of a woman in her 50s, and I would like to try variety shows, travel shows, and music shows.

And there is more. To begin with, not all commentators express their own opinions. In some cases, they follow a script and speak according to the direction of the program. Moreover, since she belongs to a major production company, it is unlikely that she will be removed from the program unless she makes some crucial mistake.

It seems that post-Miura will not waver even if this comment comes under fire.

  • Text Hiroyuki Sasaki

    Born in Sendai City, Miyagi Prefecture, Mr. Sasaki became a reporter for FRIDAY at the age of 31, reporting numerous scoops during his time with FRIDAY and later working mainly for weekly magazines. Recently, he also appears on TV and radio as a commentator.

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