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Cablegate: Daily Summary of Japanese Press 05//08

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PP RUEHFK RUEHKSO RUEHNAG RUEHNH
DE RUEHKO #1264/01 1300825
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 090825Z MAY 08
FM AMEMBASSY TOKYO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4101
INFO RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC PRIORITY
RHEHAAA/THE WHITE HOUSE WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RUEAWJA/USDOJ WASHDC PRIORITY
RULSDMK/USDOT WASHDC PRIORITY
RUCPDOC/USDOC WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC//J5//
RHHMUNA/HQ USPACOM HONOLULU HI
RHHMHBA/COMPACFLT PEARL HARBOR HI
RHMFIUU/HQ PACAF HICKAM AFB HI//CC/PA//
RHMFIUU/USFJ //J5/JO21//
RUYNAAC/COMNAVFORJAPAN YOKOSUKA JA
RUAYJAA/CTF 72
RUEHNH/AMCONSUL NAHA 0090
RUEHFK/AMCONSUL FUKUOKA 7702
RUEHOK/AMCONSUL OSAKA KOBE 1381
RUEHNAG/AMCONSUL NAGOYA 6047
RUEHKSO/AMCONSUL SAPPORO 8295
RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 3244
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL 9261
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 9731

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 09 TOKYO 001264

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR E, P, EB, EAP/J, EAP/P, EAP/PD, PA;
WHITE HOUSE/NSC/NEC; JUSTICE FOR STU CHEMTOB IN ANTI-TRUST DIVISION;
TREASURY/OASIA/IMI/JAPAN; DEPT PASS USTR/PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICE;
SECDEF FOR JCS-J-5/JAPAN,
DASD/ISA/EAPR/JAPAN; DEPT PASS ELECTRONICALLY TO USDA
FAS/ITP FOR SCHROETER; PACOM HONOLULU FOR PUBLIC DIPLOMACY ADVISOR;
CINCPAC FLT/PA/ COMNAVFORJAPAN/PA.

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OIIP KMDR KPAO PGOV PINR ECON ELAB JA

SUBJECT: DAILY SUMMARY OF JAPANESE PRESS 05//08


INDEX:

(1) President Hu expresses gratitude for yen loans in speech at
Waseda University and indicates plan to boost youth exchanges
(Asahi)

(2) President Hu meets with Soka Gakkai head Ikeda (Asahi)

(3) China uses pandas as diplomatic card; Prime Minister Fukuda to
use "pandas" for Lower House election? (Tokyo Shimbun)

(4) Two months to go until G-8: Japan making great effort in
coordinating measures to combat global-warming greenhouse gasses;
Major emitters remain at odds with their interests clashing (Tokyo
Shimbun)

(5) Interviews with Kaoru Yosano and Naoto Kan on future of
bicameral legislature (Asahi)

(6) Will Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office Special
Investigation Department take action against Kyuma after early May
Golden Week holidays? (Sentaku)

ARTICLES:

(1) President Hu expresses gratitude for yen loans in speech at
Waseda University and indicates plan to boost youth exchanges

ASAHI (Page 4) (Full)
May 9, 2008

Nobuyoshi Sakajiri

Chinese President Hu Jintao, now visiting Japan as the top leader of
China for the first time in 10 years, yesterday delivered a speech
at Waseda University, in which he expressed gratitude for yen loans
by noting they played an active part in modernizing China. Hu
continued that a series of assistance by Japan to China "will be
remembered indefinitely."

Although the two countries have been at loggerheads over some
disputes, for instance, the poisonous dumplings incident, Hu
expressed his appreciation of Japan's past contributions. By so
doing, he stressed to both the Japanese and Chinese peoples the need
to build a mutually beneficial relationship.

When Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao visited Japan in the Spring of last
year, he delivered a speech in the Diet. At the time Wen referred to
Japan's assistance that was of help to modernization and economic
growth of China and noted, "The people of China will never forget
it," but Wen did not make any mention of yen loans. Hu's clear
mention of yen loans apparently reflects China's more positive
attitude toward Japan.

Referring to Japan-China relations, Hu noted, "The other side's
economic growth is not a threat but a chance for us." He stressed
the need to build a "win-win" relationship instead of a "zero-sum"
relationship.

Ten years ago, when then President Jiang Zemin gave a speech at
Waseda University, he focused on the history issue. As a result, he
caused the Japanese public's sentiment toward China to worsen.

TOKYO 00001264 002 OF 009

SUBJECT: DAILY SUMMARY OF JAPANESE PRESS 05//08


Hu, too, touched on the same issue, describing the history of the
two countries as an unhappy one and noting that history is a rich
philosophical textbook. But he said that Japan's militarism hurt not
only China but also the people of Japan. Hu noted that by looking to
the future instead of the past, "we must hand the banner of
friendship down to our children's generation." Hu stressed the need
to boost youth exchanges and announced a plan to invite 100 Waseda
University students to China.

Meanwhile, Hu said, "I recognize that China has achieved economic
growth but that it is still the world's largest developing country."
He added, "Contradictions and problems that emerged in the process
of economic growth are unprecedented in terms of scale and
complication."

Furthermore, Hu said, "China will never pose a threat to any country
nor fight for hegemony," apparently in a bid to appease the
deep-seated view of China as a threat in the international
community.

The speech was broadcast live across China.

(2) President Hu meets with Soka Gakkai head Ikeda

ASAHI (Page 4) (Full)
May 9, 2008

Chinese President Hu Jintao yesterday held a 30-minute meeting with
Soka Gakkai Honorary Chairman Daisaku Ikeda at a hotel in Tokyo and
exchanged views with him on Japan-China relations. According to Soka
Gakkai, Hu met with Ikeda in 1985 and 1998, when he was visiting
Japan. His meeting with Ikeda this time was his third. The session
was realized at the request by the Chinese side. Ikeda offered a
Chinese poem of his own composition to Hu and greeted him by saying,
"In a warm spring day under clear sky, your trip was realized." In
response, Hu said, "You have played an important role in providing
us with suggestions from a historical perspective at a time when
Japan-China relations faced difficulties. I would like to offer my
heartfelt gratitude to you." Hu invited Ikeda to visit China.

(3) China uses pandas as diplomatic card; Prime Minister Fukuda to
use "pandas" for Lower House election?

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Page 24) (Full)
April 9, 2008

On May 7, one week after Ueno Zoo's giant panda Ling Ling died, an
agreement was reached at the Japan-China summit that China would
loan a pair of giant pandas to Japan. Since the timing was perfect,
there was even a blog on the Internet: "Ling Ling might have been
killed for the sake of Japan-China relations."

On May 8 when the rumor that Ling Ling might have been killed was
put on a website, Ueno Zoo received several phone calls asking the
truth about the rumor. The Ueno Zoo side has said that they
responded to those questions with confidence that could not be true.
However, there remains "suspicion."

On April 22, Ueno Zoo stopped showing Ling Ling to the public on the
grounds that he needed treatment. After that, the zoo once resumed
showing Ling Ling to visitors. It again halted such on April 29. At

TOKYO 00001264 003 OF 009

SUBJECT: DAILY SUMMARY OF JAPANESE PRESS 05//08

around 2:00 a.m. on April 30, Ling Ling died with nobody attending.
Chinese President Hu Jintao arrived in Tokyo on May 6 and it was
decided on the 7th that a pair of giant pandas would be loaned to
Ueno Zoo.

Ueno Zoo's General Manager Kazuhiro Sakamoto said:

"I don't think the loan of pandas was discussed at the Japan-China
summit because Ling Ling had died immediately before the summit. The
Foreign Ministry sounded China out on this issue. It takes time for
Beijing to make a decision. So, before these process ends, President
Hu could not have mentioned the loan of pandas."

Around last August, Ling Ling started showing the signs of kidney
and heart failure. He was the fifth oldest one among the 104 male
pandas around the world. It is said that it was not strange for him
to die anytime. The Tokyo Metropolitan Government has earmarked
research expenditures for getting pandas in its budget for this
fiscal year. Sakamoto stressed that this meant that Ling Ling was at
death's door.

Alarms go off immediately if there is any intruder and surveillance
cameras are equipped. Persons in charges of handling animals are
being with animals they take care of loner time than being with
their families. Sakamoto said:

"So, the killing of Ling Ling was absolutely impossible. I think we
should have a veterinarian stand by, but I wonder what we could do
with that. I regret that I could not attend his deathbed."

"Panda diplomacy" is gradually producing effects. One effect is that
there is a growing friendship mood (in Japan), although there is
little progress in such pending issues as the Tibet issue and a
concrete agreement has not been reached on the joint gas exploration
in the East China Sea.

Political commentator Harumi Arima said:

"I feel like I got a glimpse of China's tough diplomacy. President
Hu used the card providing pandas with Japan immediately after
arriving in Tokyo. So, Hu's tactic makes it difficult that the
Japanese will say what it has in mind. The Japanese side might have
got caught up in China's talk and pending issues were left vague."

Arima also said:

"When carrying out diplomacy, top priority should be given to
national interests. Pandas are not national interests, aren't they?
A friendship is important. If Japan does not say what it should say,
its foreign policy will be looked down."

Attention will be on a timetable for receiving pandas. Arima showed
his prediction: "Many people will be simply pleased with pandas.
Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda will make best use of pandas for the
next Lower House election."

As one example, it is thinkable that Fukuda would receive a pair of
giant pandas before July when Japan hosts the Group of Eight summit
in Hokkaido and that he would try to improve his image by
innocuously handling the G8 summit. Fukuda then would dissolve the
Lower House and hold a snap election in August when Japanese people
are happily excited at the Beijing Olympics.

TOKYO 00001264 004 OF 009

SUBJECT: DAILY SUMMARY OF JAPANESE PRESS 05//08


Arima gave this warning:

"It is not bad to welcome the pandas, anyway. But Japan must not
lose its diplomatic goals. The Japanese public should pay attention
to (Fukuda's) panda diplomacy and the 'panda' elections."

(4) Two months to go until G-8: Japan making great effort in
coordinating measures to combat global-warming greenhouse gasses;
Major emitters remain at odds with their interests clashing

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Page 2) (Full)
May 9, 2008

There are only about two months to go until the Lake Toya G-8 in
Hokkaido, which is to start on July 7. Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda
is making a great effort to coordinate views regarding measures to
combat global warming greenhouse gases. As part of such efforts,
during the Japan-China summit on May 7, he signed a joint statement
declaring bilateral cooperation. However, the stances of major
emitters are wide apart over the greenhouse gas issue. The Tokyo
Shimbun has looked into the pattern of conflicting interests.

Three-sided confrontation

President Hu during the summit indicated a positive stance toward
taking measures to combat global warming greenhouse gases, noting,
"It is necessary to do things, based on principles that differ among
various countries, depending on their own situation, but have some
common ground." However, he did not give in on his usual stand that
industrialized countries are chiefly responsible for global
warming.

China is a major CO2 emitter, ranking with the U.S. Though it has
set a goal of improving energy efficiency, it is diametrically
opposed to the idea of mandating the adoption of a goal of cutting
greenhouse gas emissions.

Last month, the U.S. at long last came up with a mid-term goal to be
adopted under a post-Kyoto Protocol framework starting in 2013. But
it has approved an increase in CO2 emissions until 2025. This stance
is wide apart from that of the European Union (EU), which has set a
strict goal. Many countries criticized the U.S. plan as
disappointing.

This three-sided confrontation is behind the slow progress in
coordination of measures to combat greenhouse gases.

Process

In addition, how to deal with developing countries, which are not
obligated to cut CO2 emissions under the present framework, under a
post-Kyoto framework makes the issue complicated.

The current demarcation line between industrialized countries and
developing countries is based on whether they were members of the
Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). Major
emitters, such as China, India and South Korea, are categorized as
developing countries, according to this standard. These countries
and industrialized countries are competing in the basic materials
industry. Industrialized countries are calling on fast growing
developing countries to make a due effort to cut CO2 emissions.

TOKYO 00001264 005 OF 009

SUBJECT: DAILY SUMMARY OF JAPANESE PRESS 05//08


India thinks it is unacceptable for it to be treated the same as
China, as its per capita carbon dioxide emissions are one-fourth of
those of China. India is opposing the idea of setting a reduction
goal stronger than China. One Foreign Ministry official lamented,
"Process of dealing with the global warming issue is far too
complicated."

Positive signs

However, some signs of change are appearing. In the U.S., various
states, including California, are taking measures to combat
greenhouse gas emissions in their own way. Presidential candidates
have also proposed reduction targets on their own.

Regarding China, some take the view that it has begun exploring ways
to join a post-Kyoto protocol framework, while attaching importance
its own interests.

Even so, it is not easy for Japan to produce results by the G-8. The
prevailing view is that it will not be until after next year's G-8,
when a new administration will have been launched in the U.S. and
the deadline for the talks is close at hand at year's end that
full-fledged discussions on a post-Kyoto framework will start.

(5) Interviews with Kaoru Yosano and Naoto Kan on future of
bicameral legislature

ASAHI (Page 3) (Abridged slightly)
May 9, 2008

Former Chief Cabinet Secretary Kaoru Yosano -- Political realignment
will move forward based on policy

-- The ruling parties have taken a Lower House override vote to
reinstate the provisional gasoline tax rate. The step is drawing
fire.

"Envisaging a divided Diet, those who penned the Constitution
inserted in it a provision stipulating the Lower House's precedence
(over the Upper House) by giving it the right to override the upper
chamber's decision with a two-thirds majority vote. It is not an
emergency step but a standard procedure. We must follow the
Constitution."

"Resorting to the two-thirds rule seems highhanded. But when we have
to determine the Diet's will, we need to follow the constitutional
provision faithfully. In the Lower House, the ruling parties
represent public opinion. A failure to find a settlement line might
result in public distrust in politics. The Democratic Party of Japan
won the previous Upper House election, and I am certain that it
wants to face the next general election in good shape. But
conducting activities out of sync with reality is not good."

-- The DPJ took the initiative in determining candidates for key
positions requiring Diet approval.

"There are too many posts that require confirmation by both chambers
of the Diet. The government should be allowed to announce personnel
actions by exercising the executive power of the cabinet. In view of
its independent nature, I wonder if the Bank of Japan's top posts
really need Diet approval."

TOKYO 00001264 006 OF 009

SUBJECT: DAILY SUMMARY OF JAPANESE PRESS 05//08


-- The Diet is now divided. Do you think the bicameral system needs
a review?

"When the Constitution was drafted (by the United States), a
unicameral system was envisaged temporarily, but it has ended with a
two-chamber system at Japan's request. Once a system is established,
it cannot be changed easily."

-- An argument calling for reform of the Upper House has repeatedly
cropped up.

"The existence of the Upper House is clearly specified in the
Constitution. The lower chamber's decisions prevail regarding such
matters as the state budget and nomination of the prime minister.
The lower chamber is also allowed to take a two-thirds override
vote. Some might want to raise questions about the significance of
the two chambers discussing the same subjects. The United States has
two chambers with different functions. Leaving diplomatic and
security affairs to the Upper House is one idea, though that does
not help break the gridlock in the Diet."

-- Amending the Constitution also seems difficult.

"The constitutional revision argument does not move forward without
the concurrence of the upper chamber and zeal. Some LDP members are
in favor of a one-chamber system. But in reality, it is impossible
to amend the Constitution in a way to adopt a single-chamber system,
give more power to the lower chamber, and deny the existence of the
upper chamber. The argument to review the bicameral system might
never be able to reach a conclusion. Then again, debates might
prompt the Upper House members to redefine their role. There might
emerge a move to turn the upper chamber into an entity with weak
partisanship."

-- Is there any means to end the contorted Diet?

"It is important to work hard to make decisions under the conditions
resulting from the two-chamber system. The idea of forming a grand
coalition has been tarnished. Although there still is a possibility
for partial coalition, I think like-minded members will get together
and result in political realignment. Political realignment occurs to
form majority parties in the two chambers of the Diet. There are
only two options: reaching policy agreements between parties or
political realignment."

-- What are the key policy issues that determine the timing for
political realignment?

"There are two theories. One is to regroup political forces before
asking for a public vote of confidence in the next general election.
The other is that political realignment will naturally follow the
next Lower House election. Unlike before, policy issues are not
based on clear ideologies. They are determined, for instance, based
on human factors (such as likes and dislikes) and populism of
whether to pursue fiscal health (at the cost of tax increases). They
could be classified into the 'soft group' or 'hard group.'"


DPJ Deputy President Naoto Kan -- Divided Diet must be dissolved
with election


TOKYO 00001264 007 OF 009

SUBJECT: DAILY SUMMARY OF JAPANESE PRESS 05//08

-- The ruling camp has used a two-third majority in the Lower House
to restore the provisional gas tax rate.

"Such a step is legal under Article 59 of the Constitution.
Democracy does not hold unless any step is in line with public
opinion, however. The ruling block won a two-thirds majority in the
'postal election' during the then Koizumi administration. Over 70
PERCENT of voters expressed opposition to reinstating the
provisional tax rate in (exit polls) conducted during the (April 27)
Lower House by-election for the Yamaguchi second constituency. It
was utterly outrageous that the ruling bloc used an override vote in
defiance of such results."

-- A censure motion to the Upper House is unbinding.

"A censure motion against the prime minister has never been adopted
in the postwar period. The question is not about the system but
about the extent to which it is politically effective, which is an
uncharted terrain. Plummeting support rates for the cabinet reflect
public opinion. Politically, a censure motion is the same as a
no-confidence motion to the Lower House. The focus is now on whether
deliberations will stop after the motion is disregarded rather on
the motion's essence."

-- Do you think the bicameral system should be revised?

"The system does not necessarily have to be changed. Japan's
two-chamber system is designed to allow the upper chamber to
re-discuss matters that have cleared the lower chamber to make sure
that public opinion is reflected in politics. It is natural that
Diet affairs are managed based on the two-chamber system."

"I think the question of the divided Diet must be resolved with an
election, drawing a line with the debate on the system. One of the
major functions of the Diet is to let the public know about
administration. We have succeeded in making taxes more transparent,
a challenge the ruling parties have failed to accomplish. It is
absurd to blame the system."

-- In the past, you said, 'It takes a tremendous amount of energy to
win majorities in the two chambers of the Diet. It is a
contradiction in the two-chamber system."

"Winning a majority in the Lower House can immediately result in a
change of government. Things do not change easily in the Upper
House, where only a half of the seats are up for election in every
three years. The ruling and opposition camps traded their positions
as a result of the Upper House elections in 1989 and 1998. The
ruling bloc still restored a majority by launching the LDP-New
Komeito-Democratic Socialist Party administration and the
LDP-Liberal Party-New Komeito administration, respectively. This
means victories in Upper House elections do not always pave the way
for regime change."

-- The ruling bloc is criticizing that (the two-party system) stalls
politics.

"That is not true. Bureaucrats have been wasting taxpayer money over
the last two decades since the bubble economy era and politics have
also been deadlocked. The LDP cannot change the wasteful nature,
either. The Upper House election last year has generated the energy
required for changing all that."

TOKYO 00001264 008 OF 009

SUBJECT: DAILY SUMMARY OF JAPANESE PRESS 05//08


-- In 1999 when you were party president, the opposition bloc lost a
majority in the Upper House due to the LDP-Liberal Party-New Komeito
administration. This time around, is Lower House dissolution your
top priority?

"Having a majority in the Upper House carries great significance in
resulting in change of government following the next Lower House
election. The opposition parties' standpoint on the question of
provisional tax rates took concrete shape, and the top BOJ posts
cannot be determined without the opposition bloc's endorsement. The
general public has been able to sense reality."

"Prime Minister Fukuda has not received the people's verdict. He
should have dissolved the Lower House in March or April. The next
Lower House election should be held as early as possible for the
sake of the people. We will make maximum efforts so that we will be
able to face the next general election while keeping a majority in
the Upper House. The people have sensed possible regime change, and
we want them to make their final decision in the next Lower House
election."

(6) Will Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office Special
Investigation Department take action against Kyuma after early May
Golden Week holidays?

Sentaku (Page 98) (Full)
May, 2008

The Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office Special Investigation
Department (SID), which has thus far been keeping silent, will
likely take action against those connected to the political world
after the early May Golden Week holidays. The spring transfers of
business from the outgoing to the incoming public prosecutors are
almost over. The SID appears to have reached a decision that
conditions for taking the next step in their investigation have been
met with the passage of the fiscal 2008 budget and the former vice
defense minister and other involved officials during the first trial
admitting to the facts present in the indictment in late April.
There are three pending issues. Investigations into those cases will
kick into high gear in order of precedence.

(1) The involvement of former Defense Minister Akio Kyuma in a
series of defense scandals involving the Defense Ministry and
political circles. The key is how funds handed over to Naoki
Akiyama, a fixer of defense matters, from Yamada Yoko, a company
that served as an agency for the U.S. defense industry, and several
leading Japanese trading houses -- it is said that each company
handed about 300,000 dollars to him -- have been spent.

(2) The Pacific Consultants International (PCI = leading
construction consultant) case linked to ODA funds, involving foreign
politicians.

(3) Relations between the tax evasion by ABC Home, a real estate
company, and former Liberal Democratic Party Secretary General
Hidenao Nakagawa.

Four public prosecutors and administrative officers of the special
investigation team are secretly continuing their investigation.
Since the investigation is being carried out in utmost secrecy, even
other members of the SID do no know what they are doing, according

TOKYO 00001264 009 OF 009

SUBJECT: DAILY SUMMARY OF JAPANESE PRESS 05//08

to a source related to the Public Prosecutors Office.

In the PCI case, public prosecutors in April launched investigation
into former executives on suspicion of breach of trust. Chances are
that public prosecutors might switch their target to politicians,
the favorite target, using the PCI case as camouflage, so that their
intention will not be read beforehand. The same source predicted,
"There might be major arrests, not seen since the case of former LDP
Secretary General Shin Kanemaru, who was arrested on suspicion of
tax evasion without voluntary questioning.

DONOVAN

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