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President Obama speaks as he attends a joint news conference with Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the Akasaka State Guest House in Tokyo, on Thursday. Obama reinforced the U.S.-Japan security commitment. (AP)

Obama: Japan's Administration Of Disputed Islands Shouldn't Change

Apr 24, 2014

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President Obama on Thursday said the U.S. believes that Japan's administration of the Senkaku islands, which China also claims, should not change "unilaterally," as he assured Tokyo that U.S. security guarantees "covers all territories administered by Japan."

Obama, on the first stop in a week-long swing through the Asia-Pacific region, spoke alongside Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. As The New York Times notes, the president issued a "carefully calibrated statement" that "stopped short of siding with Japan in the dispute over who has sovereignty over the islands," which Beijing calls Diaoyu.

"Historically, [the islands] have been administered by Japan, and we do not believe that they should be subject to change unilaterally," Obama said, according to the Times. "What is a consistent part of the alliance is that the treaty covers all territories administered by Japan."

"[The] U.S.-Japan alliance is the foundation for not only our security in the Asia Pacific region but also for the region as a whole," the president said after a meeting between the two leaders.

"And we have continued to strengthen it. We are looking at a whole range of issues that are challenging at this time, including the threats posed by North Korea and the nuclearization that's been taking place in that country," Obama said.

Abe, who spoke first, said the U.S.-Japan alliance "is indispensable and irreplaceable as the foundation for a peaceful and prosperous Asia-Pacific region.

"[Together] with the United States, Japan would like to realize our leading role of the alliance in ensuring a peaceful and prosperous Asia Pacific," Abe said.

However, the Times says Obama's message "was partly vitiated by the failure to conclude a trade deal with Japan. Despite frantic, round-the-clock talks, negotiators failed to close the gaps on issues like access to Japan's beef and pork markets — further bogging down the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a regional trade pact that is a central pillar of Mr. Obama's Asian strategy.

"With little to announce on the trade front, Mr. Obama and Mr. Abe kept the focus on managing rising tensions in the East China Sea, where China last year imposed an air defense identification zone as a way of asserting its sovereignty over those waters."

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Can these cartoon pals help reduce the stigma of cancer treatment for children? (Courtesy of Ogilvy Brazil)

Snoopy, Garfield And Friends Go Bald For Kids With Cancer

by Linda Poon
Apr 24, 2014

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Olive Oil Snoopy Monica from Monica's Gang, one of Brazil's most popular cartoons, got a makeover as part of the Bald Cartoons campaign.

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It's not easy having cancer, especially when you're a kid. And it's even harder when that bald chemo head tells the whole world that you're sick.

So Garfield, Hello Kitty and the fine-feathered cast of the movie Rio 2 are going bald, too. Cartoonists around the world are de-fuzzing their creations as part of a Brazilian project that aims to reduce the stigma of cancer treatment.

Children "have to fight the prejudice from friends, from colleagues at school and from people they see on the street," says Roberto Fernandez, executive creative officer at the ad agency Ogilvy Brazil, which launched the campaign with GRAACC, a childhood cancer nonprofit in Sao Paulo. "They start to be treated as somebody special, in a bad sense. People avoid them; friends at school bully them for being bald."

The Bald Cartoons concept started in Brazil back in November, when characters in cartoons and comic books popular there, such as Monica's Gang, started taking a bit off the top. This month it's going international, with about 40 characters from across the globe including Garfield, Snoopy, Hello Kitty and Finn from the TV show Adventure Time.

The story lines stay the same, Fernandez tells Shots, but the characters have no hair - or fur - on their heads.

"They're bald with no explanation, just like if a kid with cancer is bald ... you don't have to bother them about the fact the he or she is bald," he says. "That's how we want to see kids. I want to see kids playing happily, no matter if they have or don't have hair."

In Brazil, the Bald Cartoons campaign became so popular it even got a Twitter shoutout from Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff.

But Fernandez is most excited about children's reactions. One patient said in a video, "I thought that if I took my hat off at school people would laugh, but now I don't feel that anymore."

"And he took off the cap," Fernandez says. "And all these friends clapped for him immediately. And that was a huge emotional moment for us."

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Can these cartoon pals help reduce the stigma of cancer treatment for children? (Courtesy of Ogilvy Brazil)

Four-Letter Friends

Apr 24, 2014 (Ask Me Another)

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Olive Oil Snoopy Monica from Monica's Gang, one of Brazil's most popular cartoons, got a makeover as part of the Bald Cartoons campaign.

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We don't have to bleep a single word in this final round. Rather, identify famous folks who have four letters in both their first and last names, like the Grammy-winning singer of "I Try," Macy Gray.

Heard in Episode 315: Let It Lopez

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Can these cartoon pals help reduce the stigma of cancer treatment for children? (Courtesy of Ogilvy Brazil)

Google, You Autocomplete Me

Apr 24, 2014 (Ask Me Another)

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Olive Oil Snoopy Monica from Monica's Gang, one of Brazil's most popular cartoons, got a makeover as part of the Bald Cartoons campaign.

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What's the weirdest thing you've ever Googled? Search histories can be so incriminating. In this round, guess celebrities based on their common search terms, like "height" and "goes crazy on Oprah."

Heard in Episode 315: Let It Lopez

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Can these cartoon pals help reduce the stigma of cancer treatment for children? (Courtesy of Ogilvy Brazil)

Working Title

Apr 24, 2014 (Ask Me Another)

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Olive Oil Snoopy Monica from Monica's Gang, one of Brazil's most popular cartoons, got a makeover as part of the Bald Cartoons campaign.

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Which sounds like a more appealing read, The Great Gatsby or Trimalchio in West Egg? They're the same book, but now you've learned Fitzgerald's working title. Identify more book titles in this game.

Heard in Episode 315: Let It Lopez

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