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Cablegate: Daily Summary of Japanese Press 08/19/08

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P 180748Z AUG 08
FM AMEMBASSY TOKYO
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INFO RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC PRIORITY
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RUYNAAC/COMNAVFORJAPAN YOKOSUKA JA
RUAYJAA/CTF 72
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RUEHFK/AMCONSUL FUKUOKA 9445
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RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 4950
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL 0940
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 1279

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 07 TOKYO 002273

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 08/19/08

INDEX:

(1) Okinawa alone sees sharp increase in number of visits by U.S.
nuclear-powered submarines; Record already broken; Levels remain
same as last year at other ports; Increase may indicate intensified
activities (Ryukyu Shimpo)

(2) Okinawa prefectural government announces radioactivity readout
"same as normal level" after conducting third-day radiological
investigation near USS Columbus (Okinawa Times)

(3) DPJ policy (Part 3): Political initiative a thorny path (Asahi)

(4) Interview with Defense Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi --
Reinvestigation into Japanese abductees must be confirmed as
necessary (Yomiuri)

(5) Editorial: Aug. 15 -- We should reaffirm Japan-U.S. relations
(Sankei)

ARTICLES:

(1) Okinawa alone sees sharp increase in number of visits by U.S.
nuclear-powered submarines; Record already broken; Levels remain
same as last year at other ports; Increase may indicate intensified
activities

RYUKYU SHIMPO (Page 2) (Full)
August 18, 2008

White Beach in Okinawa Prefecture, Sasebo base in Nagasaki, and
Yokosuka base in Kanagawa are often visited by the U.S. Navy's
nuclear-powered submarines. It has become clear through surveys by
those local governments that visits to the naval base in Okinawa
alone have markedly increased. U.S. nuclear-powered submarines have
made a record 27 visits to White Beach in Uruma City this year.
Meanwhile, 11 nuclear-powered vessels, including nine
nuclear-powered submarines, have visited Sasebo, and five
nuclear-powered subs made port calls at Yokosuka -- about the same
levels as last year.

This can be taken as indicating that the U.S. Navy has intensified
its activities in waters near Okinawa against the backdrop of the
Chinese Navy's advancement. Masato Shiozaki, a member of Rimpeace, a
civic group monitoring U.S. military activities, including
nuclear-powered submarines at Sasebo, noted: "With the renovation of
White Beach's berth, (Okinawa's role) seems to have been shifted
from a venue providing short-term support to a place extending
long-term support."

Shiozaki added: "(Dredging) work is underway at Yokosuka in
preparation for the arrival of the USS George Washington, a U.S.
Seventh Fleet aircraft carrier. Crews of several U.S.
nuclear-powered submarines have had occasions to visit other ports
in Japan, including Okinawa." He thus indicated that the dredging
work at Yokosuka has had an impact on port calls in Okinawa.

The USS La Jolla entered Sasebo port on Aug. 4 for the first time,
following the revelation of an accident in which another U.S.
nuclear submarine leaked cooling water containing radiation. On Aug.
15, the La Jolla reentered Sasebo port, marking the ninth visit to
the port by U.S. nuclear-powered submarines this year. Last year,

TOKYO 00002273 002 OF 007


the naval base was visited by a total of 12 nuclear-powered vessels,
including an aircraft carrier.

The Yokosuka base, where the dredging work is underway, has been
visited by a total of five nuclear-powered submarines, the same as
the number recorded in early August last year. A Yokosuka military
base affairs division source said: "Overall, there has been no
change in Yokosuka. There were five port calls as of July 31, 2007.
At this pace, it would result in the same trend as last year."

Last year, White Beach confirmed a record 24 visits, breaking the 20
line for the first time. The record was already broken in July this
year.

(2) Okinawa prefectural government announces radioactivity readout
"same as normal level" after conducting third-day radiological
investigation near USS Columbus

OKINAWA TIMES (Page 7) (Full)
August 16, 2008

Regarding the results of a third-day radiological investigation near
the USS Columbus, a 6,082-ton Los Angeles-class nuclear-powered
submarine of the U.S. Navy, now berthed at White Beach in Heshikiya,
Katsuren, Uruma City, the Okinawa prefectural government military
base affairs department announced yesterday that its radioactivity
readout was the "same as the normal level." The time and date of its
departure remain unknown.

(3) DPJ policy (Part 3): Political initiative a thorny path

ASAHI (Page 4) (Full)
August 15, 2008

"Political initiative" is one of the keywords that have been
discussed in the world of politics over the past decade or so for
political reform. It connotes that politicians break away from the
bureaucracy's control and display leadership.

What has been done under the so-called political initiative includes
restructuring government ministries and agencies, beefing up the
functions of the prime minister's office, and establishing senior
vice ministerial posts. Apart from whether the political initiative
has led to remarkable achievements, politicians have explored
various ways for political reform.

Prime Minister Fukuda recently shuffled his cabinet-apparently in an
attempt to strengthen the political initiative. Fukuda appointed a
former cabinet minister to the post of senior vice minister for the
Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare (MHLW), which has been rocked
over the pension fiasco. Why?

Each of the government's ministries and agencies is headed by a
cabinet minister. Furthermore, in the case of the MHLW, there are
two senior vice ministers and two parliamentary secretaries as
political appointees. They are all politicians and team up with the
minister to take the political initiative.

However, one politician, who has now left that MHLW political team
with Fukuda's shuffle of his cabinet, recalls: "The administrative
vice minister, who tops all bureaucrats, never came to my room. I
just received reports in the name of 'lecture' from the directors

TOKYO 00002273 003 OF 007


general of bureaus, so I couldn't take part in policy planning or
decision making. I asked Minister Masuzoe to meet. But I never had
even a chance to dine with him. My job was only to attend ceremonies
in his stead."

Government posts for political appointees are something ornamental
with no real powers to control bureaucrats, a far cry from the
political initiative... This system has been introduced under the
initiative of Ichiro Ozawa, president of the leading opposition
Democratic Party of Japan (Minshuto). In 1998, Ozawa, who was
president of the Liberal Party (Jiyuto), held talks with his
counterpart from the ruling Liberal Democratic Party to iron out
policy differences between the two parties for coalition government.
Ozawa pushed the LDP to abolish the government's parliamentary
delegate system, under which government bureaucrats used to reply to
Diet interpellations. Instead, Ozawa advocated senior vice
ministerial posts. In 1999, his advocacy came true. Ozawa, confident
of the political initiative, was sure that it would bring a big
change.

On July 13, Ozawa addressed a political seminar. In his speech
there, Ozawa was eloquent about his political concept he would shape
after the DPJ takes the reins of government. While insisting on the
political initiative, Ozawa sighed over the current status of senior
vice ministers and parliamentary secretaries. He went on: "This
system is now in place, and there are more posts. Politicians are
happy. But bureaucrats are sneering at them. When we come into
office, we will fix this system in a thoroughgoing way."

Lawmakers in the ruling parties enter the cabinet as senior vice
ministers. Among politicians familiar with policies, lawmakers
belonging to the ruling parties are prone to speak for bureaucrats
as zoku giin-or lobbyist politicians acting in the interests of
certain government ministries and industries. Meanwhile, senior vice
ministers are expected to master bureaucrats within the government.

Junichiro Koizumi is said to have pushed for the political
initiative. In 2002, when Koizumi was prime minister, he thought to
halt the bureaucracy's traditional practice of planning and
implementing policies with the LDP's zoku giin legislators standing
behind. Then, Koizumi told the LDP's leadership to discuss his idea
of doing away with the LDP's prior examination of government-planned
policies. The government customarily had to ask the ruling party for
its approval of legislative measures before adopting them in a
cabinet meeting. Koizumi thought that this had strengthened ties
between the government's bureaucracy and the LDP's zoku giin
politicians. However, his advocacy faced negative reactions from
within the LDP and faded away.

The question is how Ozawa will have the system of senior vice
ministers function effectively. In his seminar speech, Ozawa cited
Britain's parliamentary politics." At the time of Prime Minister
Blair," Ozawa said, "200 politicians filled government posts." With
this, Ozawa depicted his image of government.

According to the DPJ's concept of government, the ruling party's
executives, including its secretary general and its policy board
chairman, are to serve concurrently as cabinet ministers. The ruling
party and the cabinet become one, so there is no need for
government-planned policies to go through the ruling party's prior
examination. Shortly after the DPJ takes office, the prime minister
and all cabinet ministers and the political teams of senior vice

TOKYO 00002273 004 OF 007


ministers at government ministries and agencies meet for training.

The DPJ will require senior government bureaucrats-or more precisely
the administrative vice minister of each ministry and the directors
general of each ministry's bureaus-to cooperate on its manifesto.
The government currently has a total of 48 posts for senior vice
ministers and parliamentary secretaries as political appointees. The
DPJ plans to double this lineup so its politicians can supervise and
oversee each bureau of all government ministries and agencies...

This is the last of a three-part series.

(4) Interview with Defense Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi --
Reinvestigation into Japanese abductees must be confirmed as
necessary

YOMIURI (Page 4) (Full)
August 16, 2008

Japan and North Korea have agreed at the latest working-level talks
in China's Shenyang that Pyongyang would reinvestigate the Japanese
nationals abducted by North Korea. The Yomiuri Shimbun interviewed
Defense Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi to find out his views on, among
other matters, North Korean issues and the question of the
continuation of the Maritime Self-Defense Force's refueling
operation in the Indian Ocean.

-- What is your assessment of the Japan-DPRK working-level talks?

"The two countries have come to terms on specifically how to
reinvestigate the matter, so they deserve a positive assessment of
some sort. An accord was reached for North Korea to report progress
to Japan whenever necessary and for Japan to confirm progress. But
the talks stopped short of agreeing on concrete steps (for Japan) to
confirm progress at various stages. The question is how to confirm
the progress."

-- How should the abduction issue be settled?

"Simply put, diplomatic ties must be normalized early by resolving
the abduction, nuclear and missile issues and by settling the
unfortunate past in accordance with the Japan-Pyongyang
Declaration."

-- What is your view of the U.S. government's response regarding its
decision to delist North Korea as a state sponsor of terrorism?

"The process concerns only the U.S. government. Basically, the
question is what decision the other side makes. Nevertheless, we are
in accord on the importance of agreeing on how (the North Korean
nuclear declaration) should be verified specifically and on
beginning the verification process based on that."

-- What is your perception of the nuclear and missile threats from
North Korea?

"North Korea has a population of 23 million; including 1.1 million
in the military. Putting high priority on military might, the
country is posing a threat. As seen from its nuclear test, that
country is an unstable factor in the region."

-- Are you planning to submit to the next extraordinary Diet session

TOKYO 00002273 005 OF 007


a bill amending the new Antiterrorism Special Measures Law for the
continuation of the Maritime Self-Defense Force's refueling
operation in the Indian Ocean?

"The government has yet to determine its policy. There is a
consensus on the need of the war on terror. We, too, must convey its
significance to the world and explain it. Japan is conducting its
refueling operation against the backdrop of a variety of arguments.
It is necessary to explain their gravity and then to discuss what
conclusion we should aim at."

-- What is your view of the report by the Council on Reform of the
Defense Ministry and how should it be proceeded?

"We will steadily implement what is in the council report one by
one. We must create a cycle of restored public trust and increased
SDF morale. I will craft implementation plans and include what is
necessary in the budgetary request for fiscal 2009 by basically
following my predecessor, Mr. Ishiba's policy course."

(5) Editorial: Aug. 15 -- We should reaffirm Japan-U.S. relations

SANKEI (Page 2) (Full)
August 15, 2008

Today marks the 63rd anniversary of the end of World War II. Like
that day 63 years ago, amid the chirring of cicadas in chorus, the
nation prays for the repose of the souls of the war dead.

Meanwhile many Japanese people are now interested in the Beijing
Olympic Games. People are paying attention not only to the
performances of Japanese athletes but also to the way China is
taking advantage of the Olympics to show off its national strength.

The opening ceremony of the Beijing Olympics was attended by leaders
from more than 80 countries, including Japan, the United States, and
Russia, the largest number of participants in the history of the
Olympic Games. French President Nicolas Sarkozy attended the opening
ceremony although he had announced his absence.

Olympics for China to display its strength

The largest number of world leaders attended the ceremony. This is
also a result of China's diplomatic efforts. It may safely be said
that this indicates that the world cannot ignore for better or worse
China to become a superpower with its economic development and
military buildup.

China's economic growth, which makes us think of the revival of an
"empire," has become an element to fundamentally rock Japan's
national strategy that has maintained its security and prosperity,
centering on its alliance with the United States based on the
Japan-U.S. Security Treaty. Therefore, we can say that it is
significant for Japan to mark the anniversary of the end of the war
during the Beijing Olympics from the viewpoint of considering
Japan's postwar period and future.

The U.S. Bush administration has put off delisting North Korea as a
state sponsor of terrorism although it planned to do so on Aug. 11
in return for the DPRK's declaration of its nuclear programs.
However, the postponement is just a temporary ease of mind for
Japan, which has regarded the inclusion of North Korea in a U.S.

TOKYO 00002273 006 OF 007


list of state sponsors of terrorism as a diplomatic card to resolve
North Korea's abductions of Japanese nationals.

It seems unavoidable that U.S. public opinion will lean to China.
This is because we deem it difficult to stop the United States from
giving priority to such multilateral negotiations as the six-party
talks rather than to the Japan-U.S. alliance under the East Asian
security framework. It is not only the United States that makes
light of the Japan-U.S. alliance and nullify it.

The Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force's refueling activities in
the Indian Ocean to back up U.S.-led antiterror operations was
suspended for about three months this year. This is attributable to
the delayed enactment of the Antiterrorism Special Measures Law,
resulting from the Diet's current divided situation where the
opposition camp dominates its upper chamber while the ruling
coalition holds a majority of the seats in its lower chamber.

In addition to the opposition bloc, the New Komeito, the junior
coalition partner of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), is
also opposed to extending the law. So, it is now extremely difficult
to continue the MSDF's refueling mission. As it stands, the United
States might well think Japan will only ask for help and will never
come to help.

Learn from the annulment of Anglo-Japanese Alliance

Some Japanese lawmakers, including Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ)
President Ichiro Ozawa, have called for placing importance on
multinational talks rather than the Japan-U.S. alliance. Ozawa has
advocated U.N.-centered diplomacy. It goes without saying that such
a situation is similar to the time when the Anglo-Japanese Alliance
was abrogated.

The Anglo-Japanese Alliance, concluded in 1902, contributed to
Japan's victory in the Russo-Japanese War and ensured Japan's stable
status in the international community. However, the Anglo-Japanese
Alliance was abrogated since the Four-Power Treaty by Japan, the
United States, Britain and France was signed at the Washington Naval
Conference in 1921.

The Four-Power Treaty was intended for the United States and China
to drive a wedge into the Japan-Britain relations. Another reason
was that there was a mood in Japan exploring multilateral
cooperation rather than cooperation with Britain.

Although the Four-Power Treaty advocated international cooperation
in the Pacific region, it did not ensure Japan's security at all,
unlike the Anglo-Japanese Alliance. Japan, which lost the only
alliance, was increasingly isolated in the international community,
and it had to head down the path of destruction in World War II.

If Japan chose a multilateral framework with China, which has
different values, and South Korea, which has strengthened a hostile
stance toward it, it would have to walk the path of isolation.

It is also important for Japan to strengthen its "independence,"
preparing for "the United States' change of mind."

However, what Japan should do before that is to make sure its bond
with the United States by showing Washington its effort for
continuing its refueling mission in the Indian Ocean. Tokyo must

TOKYO 00002273 007 OF 007


prevent China and North Korea from rocking the Japan-U.S.
relations.

Japan must depict a blueprint so as not to lead the country in the
wrong direction. That means to comfort the spirits of 3 million
people who died in the war.

SCHIEFFER

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