New answers tagged conjunctions
The purpose of that structure is making "無論、生き残ったのには理由があるからなのだ" into a subordinate clause for "彼は唯一の生き残り", in other words, those are one sentence divided by period. It enhances an effect like "He - of course, it's because there's a reason he survived - is the sole survivor".
You can still use が even if it does not follow マス形. That said 漢字が読めるが、漢字が書けない。 is grammatical. There are some alternatives けど<けれど<けども<けれども (least to most formal): 漢字が読めるけど、漢字が書けない。 漢字が読めるけども、漢字が書けない。 漢字が読めるけれども、漢字が書けない。
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