Cablegate: Japanese Morning Press Highlights 08/26/08
PP RUEHFK RUEHKSO RUEHNAG RUEHNH
DE RUEHKO #2332/01 2390116
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 260116Z AUG 08
FM AMEMBASSY TOKYO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 6795
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//
RUYNAAC/COMNAVFORJAPAN YOKOSUKA JA
RUEHNH/AMCONSUL NAHA 1895
RUEHFK/AMCONSUL FUKUOKA 9533
RUEHOK/AMCONSUL OSAKA KOBE 3273
RUEHNAG/AMCONSUL NAGOYA 7678
RUEHKSO/AMCONSUL SAPPORO 0113
RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 5036
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL 1024
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 1357
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 07 TOKYO 002332
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: JAPANESE MORNING PRESS HIGHLIGHTS 08/26/08
1) Top headlines
3) Prime Minister's daily schedule (Nikkei)
Defense & security issues:
4) "Secret deal" on Japan's waiver of jurisdiction over SOFA
personnel still effective: JCP daily (Akahata)
5) FX fighter still up in the air (Nikkei)
6) Defense Ministry plans to buy more CH-47 helicopters (Sankei)
7) Defense Ministry to launch Guam relocation office (Yomiuri)
8) Japan an important ally: Mondale (Sankei)
9) Extra Diet session to last 70 days (Nikkei)
10) Lower House Speaker Kono in office for 1,700 days (Sankei)
11) Japan to launch int'l panel on nuclear nonproliferation in
12) Ex-Foreign Minister Kawaguchi voices concern over 'exceptional
treatment' to India's nuclear program (Yomiuri)
1) TOP HEADLINES
Government eyes seamless execution of this fiscal year's
supplementary budget and next year's budget
MAFF Minister Ota's political organization logs 23 million yen in
2005 and 2006 in office expenses for aide's home that requires no
1 in 350 citizens stands chances of getting listed as lay judge
Putin indicates Russia may halt talks on joining World Trade
Russia and Western countries scrambling for resources
39 prefectures living off 'savings'
Secret Japan-U.S. deal on waived jurisdiction by Japan over crimes
by U.S. service members still valid, according to 2001 paper by U.S.
military legal officers
(1) U.S. presidential race and global anxiety
(2) Communities do not want gangsters
TOKYO 00002332 002 OF 007
(1) DPJ leadership race needs a vote for deepening policy
(2) U.S.-Russia summit necessary for breaking gridlock in new Cold
(1) Will the U.S.-India nuclear agreement contribute to
(2) Expanding rice demand the key to sustaining industry
(1) Revitalize local economies with information and communication
(2) China-ROK partnership as momentum for Japan-China-ROK
(1) Gas fields in East China Sea: We are concerned about prime
minister's stance toward China
(2) Tochigi disaster: Police must speedily respond to calls for
(1) Nuclear nonproliferation efforts must go on
(2) Police must recover public trust for investigations
(1) Beijing Olympics demonstrates advanced sporting spirit
3) Prime Minister's Official Residence (Kantei)
Prime Minister's schedule, August 25
NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
August 26, 2008
Met Administrative Reform Minister Motegi at the Kantei.
Met MLIT Road Bureau Director General Kanai.
Met former Australian Foreign Minister Evans and former Foreign
Minister Kawaguchi, both of whom co-chair the international
committee on nuclear non proliferation and disarmament.
Met Chief Cabinet Secretary Machimura.
Met Lower House member Akiko Yamanaka.
Met Science and Technology Minister Noda, Science and Technology
Conference members Masuo Aizawa and Taizo Yakushiji, and others.
Noda stayed behind.
Met Natsuko Kanayama, a trainee in the pilot project to train human
resources in the peace-building area, and others, with Yamanaka
TOKYO 00002332 003 OF 007
Met State Minister for the Abduction Issue Nakayama.
Attended a party in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the
sale of the chicken ramen at the Teikoku Hotel.
Attended a meeting of the Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy at
Met Finance Minister Ibuki.
Met former Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Furukawa at his official
Met LDP Secretary General Aso, New Komeito Secretary General
Kitagawa, LDP Diet Affairs Committee Chairman Oshima, and New
Komeito Diet Affairs Committee Chairman Urushibara, with Machimura
present. Machimura stayed behind.
4) Japan-U.S. secret pact on Japan's waiver of jurisdiction over
crimes by U.S. service members still effective, according to paper
by U.S. military legal advisors
AKAHATA (Top Play) (Full)
August 26, 2008
It has been revealed that Japan and the U.S. concluded a secret
treaty that specifies Japan's waiver of primary jurisdiction over
crimes committed by U.S. soldiers off duty in cases deemed of "no
special importance." A paper issued in 2001 by persons including a
USFJ legal advisor notes that Japan continues to faithfully observe
It has become known through U.S. government declassified documents
and other means that the two countries concluded the secret accord
when the administrative agreement governing the legal status of U.S.
troops in Japan was revised (in 1953). But it has been found for the
first time that the agreement is still effective.
The paper, titled "An agreement on the status of foreign troops in
Japan," was written jointly by Lieutenant Colonel Dale Sonnenberg,
chief of international law at the office of the judge advocate at
U.S. Forces Japan, and Donald A. Timm, special advisor to the Judge
Advocate Headquarters. The paper is in The Handbook of the Law of
Visiting Forces, published by Oxford University in Britain in 2001.
The paper specifies the existence of the secret pact, noting: "Japan
has concluded an unofficial agreement under which it abandons its
primary right to exercise jurisdiction, excluding cases of 'special
importance.'" The paper emphasizes that the pact is still effective,
saying: "Japan has been faithful in upholding this agreement."
The paper also points out that the U.S. policy goal is to exercise
its jurisdiction over crimes by U.S. service members overseas to the
maximum extent. To that end, the paper says that various measures
TOKYO 00002332 004 OF 007
have been taken in Japan, such as (1) having Japan drop cases; (2)
giving Japan no time for it to notify (the U.S.) of its intent to
bring an accusation; and (3) having Japan abandon jurisdiction over
cases under indictment.
The paper reveals that the U.S. military is trying to insulate U.S.
service members who commit crimes from trials in Japan by every
It has also been learned that the Justice Ministry issued a notice
that included the same provisions as those in the Japan-U.S. secret
pact in 1953. Asked by Akahata about the validity of the notice at
the present point of time, the Justice Ministry did not rule it out,
just saying: "We have no comment."
5) Defense Ministry having hard time determining next-generation
fighter; U.S. embargoes F-22A, Japan's top choice
NIKKEI (Page 2) (Excerpts)
August 26, 2008
The Defense Ministry is now having a hard time determining the
next-generation mainstay fighter (FX) for the Air Self-Defense
Force. Although the ASDF craves for the state-of-the-art stealth
fighter F-22A, its procurement seems difficult, as the U.S. Congress
does not allow its exports for security reasons. Although the F-35,
currently under development, and Europe's Eurofighter are likely to
be rivals, they both lack decisive factors. The protraction of
coordination is inevitable.
The FX is to replace some 90 F-4 fighters. The ministry plans to
introduce about 50 FX fighter jets for two air squadrons. There are
six candidate models: the United States' F-22A, F-35, F-15FX, and
FA-18E/F, Europe's Eurofighter and France's Rafale.
Initially, the ministry planned to procure the first seven FX
fighters during the Midterm Defense Buildup Program (FY2005 -
FY2009), but its decision inevitably will be slipped to the next
program starting in FY2010.
China now possesses about 350 fighters comparative to those of the
ASDF in performance. The East Asian Strategic Overview 2008 by the
National Institute for Defense Studies reads: "China's air defense
capability is approaching that of Japan and it might significantly
outstrip Japan before long."
The Russian military is also rapidly reframing itself under the good
economic environment resulting from soaring prices of crude oil and
"In order to deal squarely with China and other countries with an
eye to the next 20-30 years, the state-of-the-art F-22A is necessary
at this point," a senior ASDF officer said.
At present, chances are slim that the United States will lift the
ban on exports of the F-22A, and its high price tag -- estimated to
cost 25 billion yen apiece -- is also a big challenge. Further, the
United States is scheduled to cease its production in fiscal 2011.
The F-35 now under development for exports involves fewer problems
than the F-22A. But its development is expected to take several more
years, and to what extent the technologies used for the F-35 will be
TOKYO 00002332 005 OF 007
disclosed remains unclear.
A senior ASDF officer test-piloted the Eurofighter in a British air
show in July. The Financial Times' website has also reported: "Under
financial difficulty, the British Defense Ministry has informally
asked Japan and other countries for purchasing Eurofighers (in place
of Britain)." The Eurofighter's design concept is different from
that of U.S.-developed fighters that have been adopted by the ASDF.
Further, in view of the possible impact on the Japan-U.S. alliance,
cautious views are deeply seated in the ministry, with a senior Air
Staff Office officer saying: "I wonder if the ministry can make a
decision to switch the models."
6) Defense Ministry to request funding for additional CH-47
SANKEI (Page 4) (Excerpts)
August 26, 2007
The Defense Ministry decided yesterday to procure four more CH-47
heavy-lift helicopters in fiscal 2009 for the Ground Self-Defense
Force, which has been asked by the United States and other countries
to operate in Afghanistan. The ministry will also incorporate in its
fiscal 2009 budgetary request costs for their higher engine power
and making them bulletproof so that they can be used overseas.
Although the government does not intend to add ground-based support
in Afghanistan to a bill extending the Antiterrorism Special
Measures Law to be submitted to the upcoming extraordinary Diet
session, the decision was apparently made by envisaging the future
overseas deployment of the helicopters.
The cost of procuring four CH-47 helicopters totals 26.9 billon yen.
The 58-seater CH-47 helicopters possessed by the GSDF are tasked
mainly with airlifting supplies in the wake of a disaster. It has
also been pointed out that their engines are insufficient to fly
over highlands, such as Afghanistan, and they are not bulletproof
against attacks by ground troops.
7) Defense Ministry to set up Guam relocation office
YOMIURI (Page 4) (Full)
August 26, 2008
In connection with the realignment of U.S. forces in Japan, the
Defense Ministry has decided to set up a "Guam Relocation Project
Office" in order to facilitate the planned relocation of
Okinawa-based U.S. Marines to Guam. The ministry will earmark costs
for the office in its budgetary estimate for next fiscal year.
The relocation office will be staffed with about 30 persons. The
Defense Ministry will station personnel from the office in Guam and
will also assign several persons in Hawaii, where the U.S. Pacific
Command is headquartered, to negotiate and liaise with the U.S.
In May 2006, the Japanese and U.S. governments reached a final
agreement on the realignment of U.S. forces in Japan, featuring the
Guam relocation. The United States will move 8,000 Marines from
Okinawa to Guam.
8) Obama would place importance on U.S.-Japan alliance: Mondale
TOKYO 00002332 006 OF 007
SANKEI (Page 5) (Full)
August 26, 2008
Takashi Arimoto, Denver
Former U.S. Vice President Walter Mondale (former ambassador to
Japan) gave an interview to the Sankei Shimbun on Aug. 24. Referring
to his assumption of the post of joint honorary chairman of a policy
advisory team on Japan policy for presumptive Democratic
presidential nominee Sen. Barack Obama, Mondale said that the
purpose of his selection was to demonstrate at home and abroad that
a U.S. administration led by Obama would continue attaching
importance to Japan. In this context, a source familiar with
Japan-U.S. relations revealed that a policy advisory team member
will visit Japan in early September in order to explain Obama's
basic Japan policy.
Mondale said: "The advantage of U.S.-Japan relations is that the two
countries have continued to deal with issues in a bipartisan manner,
not in a partisan fashion. We will do our best to maintain bilateral
relations." The team -- which is composed of academic Japan experts,
think-tank fellows, and former government officials -- reportedly
has worked on strengthening the alliance.
Mondale said that the current U.S.-Japan relation "are strained"
over the North Korean issue. He specifically pointed out:
"How to resolve the horrible abduction issue and how to persuade
North Korea, which seeks the right to have nuclear weapons, to give
up on its nuclear programs are important issues."
He stressed the importance of cooperation between Japan and the
United States: "We are basically united, even if there are
disagreements between the two countries."
Regarding Obama's selection of Sen. Joe Biden as his vice
presidential candidate, Mondale said: "It's great. He is well versed
in foreign and security policy. He has visited Japan many times and
he understands well the importance of the alliance."
9) Extra Diet session to last 70 days from Sept. 12
NIKKEI (Page 1) (Full)
August 26, 2008
Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda met last night with Liberal Democratic
Party (LDP) Secretary General Taro Aso and the LDP's junior
coalition partner New Komeito's Secretary General Kazuo Kitagawa, in
which the three agreed to hold the upcoming extraordinary Diet
session for 70 days from Sept. 12 through Nov. 20.
Fukuda instructed them to enact during the extra session a bill on a
supplementary budget for a package of comprehensive economic
stimulus measures, a bill extending the Maritime Self-Defense
Force's refueling operations in the Indian Ocean, a bill
establishing a Consumer Affairs Agency, and bills carried over from
the ordinary session. He also told them to make efforts to hold
consultations with the main opposition Democratic Party of Japan
(DPJ) and other opposition parties. The government plans the prime
minister's policy speech for Sept. 12 and each party's
representative interpellations in both chambers of the Diet for
TOKYO 00002332 007 OF 007
10) Lower House Speaker Kono in office for 1,700 days
SANKEI (Page 4) (Full)
August 26, 2008
Speaker of the House of Representatives Yohei Kono today marks his
1,700th day in office. He is the second-longest serving Lower House
speaker under the present Constitution. Unless the Lower House is
dissolved at an early date during the upcoming extraordinary Diet
session, he will be serving in his post for 1780 days on Nov. 14,
becoming the longest serving speaker in the postwar period. He is
expected to become the longest serving speaker on Nov. 20 among
prewar and postwar Lower House speakers, topping Ikuzo Ooka's 1,785
11) Japan, Australia to set up international nonproliferation
committee in October
NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
August 26, 2008
The government announced yesterday that Japan and Australia, aiming
to strengthen the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) regime,
would create an "international committee on nuclear nonproliferation
and disarmament" and that the committee would hold its first meeting
in October. The committee will be made up of about 15 members from
the world, including nuclear powers, and will come up with specific
proposals for an NPT meeting to be held in 2010.
12) Former Foreign Minister Kawaguchi expresses concern about
U.S.-India nuclear pact
YOMIURI (Page 2) (Full)
August 26, 2008
Former Foreign Minister Kawaguchi and former Australian Foreign
Minister Evans gave a joint press conference at the Foreign Ministry
yesterday. They expressed concern about recent moves to allow India,
which has not signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and
possesses nuclear weapons, to import nuclear fuel and nuclear
reactors, saying that such moves might undermine the foundation of
the NPT regime. Kawaguchi and Evans co-chair an international
committee on nuclear nonproliferation and disarmament (tentative
name), a conference set up under the initiative of Japan and