Thursday, November 17, 2011

HM King of Bhutan addresses the National Diet of Japan, 17 Nov 2011

With my deep respects to His Majesty the Emperor, Her Majesty the Empress, and the People of Japan, I hereby accept with great humility this opportunity to address the Diet of the nation of Japan:

Your Excellency the Speaker of the House of Representatives,
Your Excellency the President of the House of Councilors,
Your Excellency the Prime Minister,
Excellencies, members of this august house,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

I stand here before you – a young man in the presence of great wisdom, experience and achievement - in an institution of such eminence and consequence in world history. There is little that I can say to be of much use to you. On the contrary, it is I who shall take away so much from this historic moment. For this I am grateful.

Jetsun, my wife, and I also thank you for the kind invitation to Japan only one month after our wedding, and for the warmth with which we have been received. This is an extraordinary gesture that reflects the generous spirit with which you support the long friendship between our two countries.

Your Excellencies, before I go any further – I must convey to you the prayers and good wishes of His Majesty Jigme Singye Wangchuck, the Government and people of Bhutan. The Bhutanese people have always held a strong affection for Japan and shared emotionally in the success of your great nation over the decades.

Following the devastating earthquake and tsunami in March it was deeply moving to see so many Bhutanese visit temples and monasteries around the country offering butter lamps, in their humble yet genuine efforts to provide comfort and support to the Japanese people. I, myself, remember watching the news of the tsunami unfold – sitting helpless and unable to do anything. I have waited ever since to be able to say to you – that I am deeply sorry for the pain and suffering of families who lost loved ones – for those who lost their livelihoods – for the young whose lives have been completely altered – for the nation of Japan that must rebuild life after such great disaster.

No nation or people should ever have to experience such suffering. And yet if there is one nation who can rise stronger and greater from such adversity – it is Japan and her People. Of this I am confident. On your path to rebuilding and restoring of lives, we the Bhutanese people stand with you – humble in our power to provide material assistance but heartfelt and true, in our friendship, solidarity and goodwill.

Your Excellencies, we, in Bhutan, have always thought of the Japanese people as our fellow brothers and sisters. Our two Peoples are united by our commitment to - family, integrity and honour; to placing the aspirations of the community and country before one’s own desires – to raising the common good above the self.

2011 is a special year in our relations – it marks the 25th anniversary of our diplomatic ties. Yet, the Bhutanese people have always had a special affection for Japan that goes beyond our formal ties. I know that my father and his generation watched with pride as Japan led Asia into the modern world decades ago – as you brought confidence and a sense of an Asian destiny to what was then a developing region – and as you inspired so many countries who have since followed Japan into the forefront of the world economy. Japan was and continues to be a leader. Even more so today – because in this globalized world Japan is an example of strength in technology and innovation, of hard work and commitment and of strong age-old values.

The world always identified Japan as a people of great honour, pride and discipline – a people with a proud tradition in history – who approach everything with tenacity, determination and a desire to excel – a people of unity in thought and action; of brotherhood and fraternity and unfailing strength and fortitude.

I must humbly state, that this is not a myth – this is a reality that was displayed in your response to the unfortunate economic recession of past years and to the natural disaster in March. You displayed the true qualities of Japan and her people. What would have shattered other nations and caused anarchy, chaos and lament - was met by the Japanese people with quiet dignity, confidence, discipline and strength of heart, even under the worst of circumstances. In our present world, this combination of excellence – with strong roots of culture, tradition and values – is almost impossible to find. Every nation aspires to it - yet it is an integral aspect of Japanese character. These values and qualities were not born yesterday – but were born from centuries of history. They will not disappear in a few years or decades. What a great future lies ahead for a Japan that possesses such strength.

For this strength has seen Japan rise again and again, throughout history, from every setback to its status as one of the most successful nations in the world. And even more remarkable is the manner in which Japan has always, without hesitation, shared her success with people in all corners of the world.

Your Excellencies, I speak from the heart, and on behalf of all Bhutanese. I am no expert or academic – just a simple man with a deep affection for Japan.

All I am saying is that this world will benefit immensely from a Japan that defines excellence and innovation; from a Japanese people of great determination and achievement yet quiet dignity and humility; from a nation that other countries can look to as an example. And as Japan leads Asia and the world – as Japan’s presence in world affairs reflects the great achievements and history of the Japanese people, Bhutan will cheer and support you. Bhutan not only believes in the need to expand the United Nations Security Council, we are convinced that Japan must play a leading role in it. You have our full commitment and support.

Bhutan is but a small Himalayan nation of about 700,000 people. The country's enchanting physical characteristics coupled with a richly compelling history defines every fiber of the Bhutanese character. It is a beautiful country and in spite of its geographical size across the length and breadth of its varied topography lie scattered, numerous temples, monasteries and forts, reflecting the spirituality of generations of Bhutanese. Our environment remains pristine and our culture and traditions, strong and vibrant. Bhutanese continue to live lives of simplicity and modesty that foster a deep sense of harmony among our people, as we have done so for centuries.

Today, in this fast changing world, I'm most proud of the manner in which we live in a caring society where our people value harmony above all - where our youth have exceptional talent, courage and grace and are guided by the values of their forefathers. Our nation is in the able hands of our young Bhutanese. We are a youthful, modern nation with age-old values. A small beautiful country – but a strong nation too.

Thus, Japan’s role in the growth and development of Bhutan is therefore very special. You have not only provided valuable aid and assistance but also been the source of strength and encouragement as we strive to fulfill our unique aspirations. Your generosity of spirit and the higher, greater natural bond between our two peoples that is un-definable and yet so deep and spiritual - ensures that Japan will always have a friend in Bhutan.

Japan has been one of the most important development partners for Bhutan. Therefore, I am very happy to be able to thank the government and the people of Japan who personally lived in Bhutan and worked with us, for your steadfast support and goodwill for our Bhutanese people. I hereby pledge that it shall be my constant endeavor to further strengthen and deepen the bonds between our two people. Once again I convey the prayers and good wishes of the People of Bhutan to the People of Japan.

With Your Excellency’s permission, I would like to say a prayer in my own language – “May Their Majesties the Emperor and Empress enjoy good health and happiness. And may the sun of peace, security and prosperity forever shine on the beautiful Nation and People of Japan.”

Thank you, Your Excellencies!


  1. wonderful......saw the video also....had a wonderful feeling when all the people in the hall rose up in standing ovation to HM's Speech...

    Thank you sir....for sharing it...

  2. God bless Japan-Bhutan friendship.....

    Thank you Japan for being such a wonderful and beautiful friend for us, -Bhutan.

    I had first hand experience of Japanese friendliness in 2007, when i was there for about a week attending a seminar.

    Thank you..aue dorji for sharing beautiful words of our king

  3. I posted this Great Address in English as comment on YouTube video without allowance from you,sorry.And now I informed video uploader to take contact getting allowance from you to use as Eng sub.If possible ,please give her/him allowance to use.This address become one of great address not only for Japanese.
    【平成23年 2011.11.17 ブ-タン国王陛下の演説 The speech of His Majesty king of Bhutan】

  4. i heard there is this letter that the fouth king sent to our king when he was studying ,,i wish i could read it ,,our 5th hm is the epic role model for us the youth of today,,may god bless him

  5. I,as a Japanese,am so much motivated to read this Japanese translation version that I wanted to know English version.The one of my colleagues in the same field of business who had given me the Japanese translation also taught me this website.I do hope all of the world of Japanese generation regardless of stages of generations read this and reconsider what Japanese should be.This address is the most impressive one I have ever read in my life regarding my country.

  6. I am afraid that simultaneous interpretation was used along with this address?

  7. Thanks for sharing the idea there would be some apprehensions from segment but i am up for it.

  8. Truly amazing speech. What a blessing to have great friendship with your country.
    I am looking forward to visiting Bhutan with my family someday.

    I started a volunteer team in Japan to help the people in the disaster stricken areas. I take a team of 25 to 30 members up to the Tohoku area every month. Day by day, it's getting colder and the victims will suffer more. The number of volunteers have decreased due to the cold.
    The King of Bhutan's speech has given me and my team the inspiration to continue and volunteer.
    With great respect, thank you once again!

  9. @Sean, I am moved by your words. Send me your email to me. My email is

    @Anonymous. I hope Japan will recover and keep leading this region.

  10. Even many times I read these statement by King of Bhutan, I cannot stop appreciating the kindness of King, also the Bhutan nation itself, people in Bhutan.
    Thank you for good friendship between Bhutan and Japan. I hope this relationship never ends and getting stronger and greater by year by year.

    comment from Japan

  11. Hi Dorji,
    You have written glorious.

    Thanks !

  12. Hello Dorji,
    Usually I do not read article on blogs, but I would like to say that this write-up very pressured me to check out and do it! Your writing taste has been surprised me. Thank you, quite nice article.

    Body by vi

  13. Awesome speech. I like that Japan and Buthan are friends. I hope this friendship never ends. This friendship is a model to follow for some contries, by the way.

  14. Rahul Sharma
    Regional Manager – India Subcontinent

    Mobile-: +91-931 1001 931
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  15. May almighty god keep the friendship between the country for years together; Now Indian P.M. Narendra Modiji visiting Bhutan, let us hope and the friendship between the country will remain for years together.

  16. Nice ; Hope P.M. Modijis visit to Bhutan quickly.
    Adv. Vishnu Khanke ; Aurangabad. Mah.