If Japan’s media coverage of Ivanka Trump’s arrival in Tokyo is any indication, the country seems to be slightly obsessed with the first daughter’s high-ranking position and “great” sense of style.
Trump’s arrival at the Narita International Airport on Thursday evening was covered by four television stations and treated as “major news,” according to the New York Times. The same went for her subsequent dinner plans at a swanky Tokyo restaurant.
The city’s metropolitan police, too, have assigned Trump an all-female “riot squad” to protect her from overzealous admirers during the visit — and it’s the same security measure they plan to extend to first lady Melania Trump when she and President Donald Trump arrive in Japan on Nov. 5.
“Many people think she’s like a princess,” said Lully Miura, a political scientist at the University of Tokyo, in a statement to the Washington Post. “She’s well educated, beautiful, sophisticated and rich. And it’s very surprising to Japanese women that she can also talk about things that are important to society.”
The DailyMail added that Japan views Ivanka as "a fashion icon" who will attract onlookers during her stay.
On Friday, Ivanka spoke at the World Assembly for Women Conference at Tokyo’s Prince Hotel, which reportedly held a lottery for attendees.
The event was not as well attended as one might expect considering her popularity — Trump delivered an 18-minute speech to a partially-empty auditorium — but White House spokesman Josh Raffel said the hotel’s strict security measures kept people from getting to their seats. (A Washington Post reporter in attendance denies this was the case.) Nevertheless, the women who heard Trump’s speech seemed to view her as a role model.
“She is a beautiful female leader,” Rena Hayakawa, a 21-year-old college student, told the Times. “Her fashion is great.”
Another woman and former U.S. Senate staffer Mieko Nakabayashi, told the site that Ivanka’s “kind of celebrity” resonates with the Japanese people.
However, it’s unclear if Ivanka’s father is looked at as favorably. In a January article in the Independent, titled “Why Japan loves Ivanka Trump,” an Ivanka-admiring blogger — who reportedly writes about the first daughter’s fashion and lifestyle for the Japan Times — hinted that not everybody is as enamored of Donald.
“She is a good example that a woman can do an outstanding job and handle a misogynist father like Trump, without pushing too much of a feminist agenda or confronting men too much,” said Yuriko Shinzato.
“That is something that Japanese women want, but have a hard time doing in a still male-dominated society.”