Raw Japan

Slices of Japanese business, politics and life

from Global News Journal:

Remembering Hiro’s gentle smile

As Hiro Muramoto headed out the door of the Tokyo newsroom last week, weighed down with TV equipment on his way to Bangkok to cover demonstrations, he flashed a smile at a Reuters colleague.

It was, she remembers, a "Hiro" smile. It was gentle, rather than a broad grin, and it showed the 43-year-old was pleased once again to take his expertise on the road to do his job telling the world what was going on.THAILAND/

It was doing that job that cost him his life as he was killed, along with 20 others, during a sudden burst of violence during the protests in central Bangkok on Saturday night.

Hiro was not the gung-ho war correspondent of the movies. He was a careful, loving married Dad of two and a gentle mentor for young colleagues and an expert story teller.

Call me “Crasher”



My nickname among the Reuters photographers in Tokyo is “Crasher”.

They call me that because I always seem to get pictures right at the moment of a crash whenever I cover motorsports.

One colleague sometimes teases me saying “You’ve got to stop pouring oil on the track,” and I answer: ”I would never use oil — I only use banana skins!”

Welcome to Raw Japan


Welcome to Raw Japan, one of two new Reuters blogs focusing on Japan. This one is in English. The other is in Japanese and published on www.reuters.co.jp. They join other Reuters blogs that can be found at http://blogs.reuters.com/us/.


These new blogs reflect a determination to promote intelligent discussion of Japan. Most of the entries will come from Reuters journalists who depend on their ability to delve behind the scenes and produce balanced news reports about a country that is an economic powerhouse, a key strategic player, home to some of the world’s best known brands and a cultural trend-setter. The site will also be a flexible forum for the examination of issues that make Japan unique – from its politics and economy to society, culture, entertainment and history.