Search

 

Cablegate: Japanese Morning Press Highlights 09/26/08

VZCZCXRO1947
PP RUEHFK RUEHKSO RUEHNAG RUEHNH
DE RUEHKO #2655/01 2700119
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 260119Z SEP 08
FM AMEMBASSY TOKYO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7510
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 2411
RUEHFK/AMCONSUL FUKUOKA 0052
RUEHOK/AMCONSUL OSAKA KOBE 3794
RUEHNAG/AMCONSUL NAGOYA 8142
RUEHKSO/AMCONSUL SAPPORO 0627
RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 5520
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL 1515
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 1802

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 09 TOKYO 002655

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: JAPANESE MORNING PRESS HIGHLIGHTS 09/26/08

Index:

1) Top headlines
2) Editorials
3) Prime Minister's daily schedule (Nikkei)

Opinion polls:
4) Aso cabinet's inaugural popularity rating at 49.5 PERCENT in
Yomiuri poll (Yomiuri)
5) Aso cabinet's support rate at 48 PERCENT in Asahi poll (Asahi)

6) Nikkei poll shows Aso cabinet's support rate at 53 PERCENT
(Nikkei)
7) Aso cabinet's support rate at 45 PERCENT in Mainichi poll
(Mainichi)
8) Kyodo News poll posts 48 PERCENT support rate for Aso cabinet
(Tokyo Shimbun)

Prime Minister Aso to address UNGA:
9) Prime Minister Aso to pledge Japan will stay on in Indian Ocean
(Sankei)
10) Gist of Prime Minister Aso's U.N. speech (Mainichi)
11) Prime Minister Aso's U.N. debut aimed to make appeal in his
favorite area, with snap election in mind (Tokyo Shimbun)

Defense & security topics:
12) USS George Washington arrives at Yokosuka (Sankei)

Political & economic topics:
13) Ex-Prime Minister Koizumi to retire from politics (Sankei)
14) Opposition camp calls for Diet dissolution through talks
(Nikkei)
15) Ex-Abduction Minister Nakayama this time special advisor to
Prime Minister Aso (Nikkei)
16) U.S., Japan concur on simultaneous patent granting system
(Nikkei)

Articles:

1) TOP HEADLINES

Asahi:
Support rate for Aso cabinet at 48 PERCENT : LDP trades places with
DPJ in voter party preference for proportional representation

Mainichi:
Cabinet support at 45 PERCENT , down 12 points compared with launch
of previous administration

Yomiuri:
Cabinet approval rating at 49.5 PERCENT

Nikkei:
Cabinet support rate comes to 53 PERCENT

Sankei:
Former Prime Minister Koizumi to stand down: Second son to succeed
him

Tokyo Shimbun:
Cabinet approval rate at 48 PERCENT


TOKYO 00002655 002 OF 009


Akahata:
Time to change politics: Create new Japan led by people

2) EDITORIALS

Asahi:
(1) Mr. Aso, don't toy with medical services for elderly people
(2) U.S. nuclear-powered aircraft carrier: Can it become fortress
for peace?

Mainichi:
(1) Investigation into tainted rice resale: Expose corruption in
agricultural administration
(2) Deployment of nuclear-powered aircraft carrier: Both Japanese
and U.S. governments should take every possible measure to ensure
safety

Yomiuri:
(1) Deployment of nuclear-powered aircraft carrier in Japan will
serve regional stability
(2) Investigation into resale of tainted rice: Stem irregularities
involving food, by introducing severe punishments

Nikkei:
(1) Tackle issue of securing food safety from global standpoint
(2) Emissions trading should be put into practice

Sankei:
(1) Removal of seals on nuclear equipment: Do not allow North Korea
to shake six-party talks
(2) Investigation into resale of tainted rice: Necessary to ferret
out government responsibility

Tokyo Shimbun:
(1) Public medical services for elderly people aged 75 or older: Lip
service for revision not acceptable
(2) Deployment of U.S. nuclear-powered aircraft carrier in Japan
fraught with anxiety

Akahata:
(1) Revision to Worker Dispatch Law: Drastic reform needed to top
treating temporary workers as goods

3) Prime Minister's Official Residence (Kantei)

Prime Minister's schedule, September 25

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
September 26, 2008

01:31
Posed for a ceremonial photo with cabinet members at the Kantei.
Issued official appointments to Cabinet Intelligence Director Mitani
and others.

02:06
Arrived at his private residence in Kamiyama-cho.

07:52
Took a walk around his residence.

10:23

TOKYO 00002655 003 OF 009


Called at the residences of Prince Hitachi, Prince Takamado, Prince
Mikasa, Prince Tomohito, and Prince Akishino to sign a book in
commemoration of the assumption of the premiership. Later paid a
courtesy call on the Crown Prince at the temporary Crown Prince's
Palace. Then signed his name at the residence of Prince Katsura.

11:41
Met Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Uruma at the Kantei, joined by
Chief Cabinet Secretary Kawamura. Joined by Deputy Chief Cabinet
Secretary Matsumoto. Kawamura and Matsumoto stayed behind. Joined by
Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Konoike.

12:58
Met Financial Services Agency Director General Sato and Vice
Minister of Finance for International Affairs Shinohara.

14:21
Left Haneda Airport by a government plane to attend the UN General
Assembly.

4) Poll: 49.5 PERCENT back Aso cabinet

YOMIURI (Top Play) (Excerpts)
September 26, 2008

In a Yomiuri Shimbun poll, 49.5 PERCENT support the newly
inaugurated cabinet of Prime Minister Taro Aso, while 33.4 PERCENT
disapproved of it. The support rate was less than the 57.5 PERCENT
recorded immediately after the inauguration of the first cabinet of
former Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda. Asked to choose between Aso or
Democratic Party of Japan President Ichiro Ozawa as the next
premier, 54 PERCENT said they preferred Aso, while 26 PERCENT
picked Ozawa. Asked which party they planned to vote for in the
proportional representation segment in the next House of
Representatives election, 37 PERCENT chose the LDP while 30 PERCENT
picked the DPJ. These figures suggest Aso's personal popularity is
not necessarily being reflected in his party's popularity among
voters.

In the nationwide telephone opinion poll conducted from the night of
Sept. 24 through the 25th, 37.4 PERCENT expressed support for the
LDP, while 22.8 PERCENT backed the DPJ. The support rates of the
two parties declined from a survey conducted right after the LDP
presidential election was announced. The figures at that time were
43.4 PERCENT for the LDP and 26.3 PERCENT for the DPJ.

5) Poll: Aso cabinet's support rate at 48 PERCENT

ASAHI (Top play) (Abridged)
September 26, 2008

In the wake of the Aso cabinet's inauguration, the Asahi Shimbun
conducted a telephone-based spot nationwide public opinion survey,
in which the cabinet support rate was 48 PERCENT and the nonsupport
rate was 36 PERCENT . The support rate markedly rebounded as
compared with the Fukuda cabinet's low approval ratings around 20
PERCENT . However, it was lower than the Abe cabinet's 63 PERCENT
popularity rating upon its inauguration in September 2006 and lower
than the Fukuda cabinet's inaugural rating at 53 PERCENT in
September 2007.

In the survey, respondents were also asked which political party

TOKYO 00002655 004 OF 009


they would vote for if they were to vote now in their proportional
representation blocs. In this voter preference, the ruling Liberal
Democratic Party scored 36 PERCENT (28 PERCENT in a previous
survey taken Sept. 2-3), with the leading opposition Democratic
Party of Japan (Minshuto) at 32 PERCENT (leveling off from 32
PERCENT in the Sept. 2-3 survey). This question has been asked from
time to time since December last year, and the LDP outstripped the
DPJ for the first time. Among floating voters with no particular
party affiliation, however, the DPJ was still higher than the LDP,
respectively at 27 PERCENT and 17 PERCENT .

In the breakdown of public support for political parties, the LDP
stood at 34 PERCENT , rising from 29 PERCENT in the last survey
taken Sept. 10-11. The DPJ was at 23 PERCENT (19 PERCENT in the
last survey).

6) Support rate for Aso cabinet at 53 PERCENT

NIKKEI (Top Play)
September 26, 2008

An emergency poll conducted by the Nihon Keizai Shimbun and TV Tokyo
found that the support rate for the Aso cabinet came to 53 PERCENT .
The figure is up 24 points compared with the previous poll carried
out in late August in the closing days of the Fukuda administration.
However, it fell short of the 71 PERCENT recorded just after the
Abe cabinet's inauguration and the 59 PERCENT logged just after the
Fukuda cabinet's inauguration. The nonsupport rate for the Aso
cabinet was 40 PERCENT , exceeding that of the Fukuda administration
just after its inauguration by 13 points. The LDP and the DPJ were
evenly matched regarding voter party preference for proportional
representation in the upcoming Lower House election, with the LDP
supported by 36 PERCENT , while the DPJ supported by 33 PERCENT .

The poll also found that the support rate for the LDP rose to 41
PERCENT , up 4 points from the previous poll, while support for the
DPJ increased to 31 PERCENT , up 1 point. This is the first time
since March this year that the difference in approval rates for the
two parties reached 10 points.

The survey, which targeted adults throughout the nation, was
conducted on the phone by Nikkei Research, based on the random digit
dialing (RDD) method. Among 1,331 households that have voters as
family members, 788 households responded. The rate of respondents
came to 59.2 PERCENT .

7) Poll: Approval rate for Aso cabinet stands at 45 PERCENT ,
12-point drop from previous cabinet at launch

MAINICHI (Top play) (Lead paragraph)
September 26, 2008

The Mainichi Shimbun conducted a nationwide telephone poll on Sept.
24-25 on the newly inaugurated cabinet of Prime Minister Taro Aso.
The survey has found that 45 PERCENT of respondents supported the
Aso cabinet. The 45 PERCENT is a 12-point drop from that of the
poll carried out last September when the Fukuda cabinet was
inaugurated. Asked which party -- either the ruling Liberal
Democratic Party or the main opposition Democratic Party of Japan --
they wanted to win in the next House of Representatives election, 41
PERCENT said they wanted the LDP to win, while 37 PERCENT chose
the DPJ. It was the first time for the LDP's support rate to exceed

TOKYO 00002655 005 OF 009


the DPJ's in the 13 polls the newspaper has conducted since last
August. As the ruling coalition takes the 45 PERCENT favorably,
moves for an early dissolution of the Lower House and general
election will likely be accelerated.

8) Aso cabinet support rate stands at 48 PERCENT in nationwide
telephone survey, falling below approval rate for Fukuda cabinet
just after inauguration

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Top Play) (Excerpts)
September 26, 2008

Following the launch of the Aso cabinet, Kyodo News Agency conducted
a nationwide emergency telephone poll from the evening of September
24 through the 25th. The poll found that the support rate for the
cabinet came to 48.6 PERCENT , falling below the 57.8 PERCENT for
the Fukuda cabinet just after its inauguration in September last
year. The rate is low for a newly launched cabinet. The nonsupport
rate was 32.9 PERCENT .

Regarding voter preference for proportional representation in the
next Lower House election, the LDP was supported by 34.5 PERCENT of
respondents, down 3.5 points from the previous poll carried out
early this month, while the DPJ gained support from 34.8 PERCENT ,
down 0.1 PERCENT . To a question "Which -- Prime Minister Taro Aso
or DPJ President Ichiro Ozawa -- is appropriate as the next prime
minister?" 53.9 PERCENT supported Aso, while 29.4 PERCENT cited
Ozawa.

As a desirable framework for the next administration, the LDP and
DPJ traded places, with those who said "an administration led by the
LDP" standing at 38.1 PERCENT , down 5.2 PERCENT from the previous
poll, and those who replied "an administration led by the DPJ"
coming to 43.8 PERCENT , up 2.1 points. The outcome of the poll
indicated a division in expectations for the next administration,
party heads and parties.

Regarding support rates for political parties, 37.0 PERCENT
supported the LDP, up 0.2 points, while 28.3 PERCENT , up 1.3
points, supported the DPJ. The New Komeito was supported by 4.7
PERCENT , the Japanese Communist Party by 2.4 PERCENT , the Social
Democratic Party by 1.2 PERCENT , the People's New Party by 0.3
PERCENT and the New Party Nippon by 0.2 PERCENT . The rate of
respondents who have no party to support stood at 23.1 PERCENT .

9) Aso to announce continued refueling mission in UN speech

SANKEI (Page 1) (Excerpts)
September 26, 2008

Prime Minister Taro Aso departed by government plane for New York
yesterday to attend the 63rd UN General Assembly. He is scheduled to
deliver a speech on the evening of Sept. 25 (early morning of Sept.
26, Japan time) in which he will express his resolve to continue
contributing to the war on terror in Afghanistan and highlight the
need to reform the UN Security Council at an early time.

In the speech, the prime minister will play up Japan's assistance
for the reconstruction of Afghanistan and the Maritime Self-Defense
Force's refueling mission in the Indian Ocean, saying that the
international community must continue fighting terrorism. He will
also effectively announce the continuation of the refueling mission

TOKYO 00002655 006 OF 009


as part of the country's contributions, saying that Japan will
remain an active player in the war on terror as a member of the
international community.

He will also criticize North Korea's negative attitude toward
reinvestigating the fate of Japanese abductees, including Megumi
Yokota, and abandoning its nuclear program, saying that Japan is
ready to move relations with the DPRK forward by settling
outstanding bilateral issues and addressing the unfortunate past
depending on how the North acts.

Aso will be the first Japanese prime minister to address the UN
General Assembly since former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi did
so in 2005.

10) Prime Minister Aso's UN speech

MAINICHI (Page 5) (Full)
September 26, 2008

Gist of Prime Minister Aso's speech to be delivered on the evening
of September 25 (early hours of the 26th, Japan time) in the fall
session of the UN General Assembly.

Japan during the Tokyo International Conference held in May
this year called for aid to Africa aimed to accelerate its economic
growth.

An agreement was reached at the Hokkaido Lake Toya
Summit (G-8) in July to create under the UN an effective framework
for combating climate change that will aim to adopt a long-term goal
to be achieved by the whole world.

Japan can contribute to the global economy by
growing its own economy.

There is a
diplomatic contribution that only Japan can make. It will become a
broker for building confidence, by providing irrigation technology
for the development of the West Bank of the Jordan River. Japan will
submit a resolution calling for the total elimination of nuclear
weapons.

Japan has put much effort into assistance for the
reconstruction of Afghanistan and continued refueling operations in
the Indian Ocean. It will continue its proactive participation in
the war on terror along with the international community.

Though North Korea has pledged to investigate the
whereabouts of victims kidnapped by North Korean agents, it failed
to deliver on it. Japan is ready to promote Japan-North Korea
relations in response to North Korea's action. It will urge North
Korea to abandon its nuclear program through the six-party
framework.

China and South Korea are Japan's important
partners. Japan will also move promote cooperation with those two
countries and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). It
will endeavor to strengthen ties with its neighbors, while regarding
the Japan-U.S. alliance as an unchangeable linchpin.

Japan will place emphasis on the UN. It will fall in line with

TOKYO 00002655 007 OF 009


countries that share basic value with Japan.

Reform of the UNSC in terms of
increasing seats both for permanent and nonpermanent council members
must be realized at an early time. Japan will file its candidacy to
be a nonpermanent member. I would like to solicit your support.

11) Aso attends UN meeting with next general election in mind

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Page 9) (Full)
September 26, 2008

Commentary

By Kei Sato, Political News Department, New York

Prime Minister Aso Taro decided to deliver a speech to the UN
General Assembly as his first political event after assuming office
apparently to demonstrate his diplomatic caliber with a Lower House
dissolution for a snap general election in mind.

Aso, who is fluent in English and served as foreign minister, takes
pride in diplomacy. For Aso, who favors flashy stages, the UN
General Assembly presents the perfect venue to make his diplomatic
debut. It will help him outmaneuver DPJ President Ichiro Ozawa, who
advocates UN-centered diplomacy.

In fact, the government and ruling coalition made extra efforts in
adjusting the timetable for such events as the LDP presidential race
and the extra Diet session even during the LDP race on the
assumption that a Prime Minister Aso would attend the UN General
Assembly.

But a path to economic recovery to be announced in Aso's UN speech
as an international pledge remains unclear. Regarding the refueling
mission in the Indian Ocean, as well, there are no prospects, as the
DPJ has not shown any signs of changing its opposition.

If the DPJ accuses Aso of making empty promises at the UN General
Assembly during the ongoing extraordinary Diet session, the prime
minister's attendance at the event might have a negative impact on
the next Lower House election.

12) USS George Washington arrives at Yokosuka

SANKEI (Page 2) (Full)
September 26, 2008

The nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS George Washington arrived
yesterday at its new home port of Yokosuka Naval Base in Yokosuka,
Kanagawa Prefecture, becoming the fourth aircraft carrier at the
U.S. naval base in the city since the Midway in 1973. Although U.S.
nuclear-powered aircraft carriers and submarines have called at
ports in Japan, it is the first time (for a U.S. nuclear-powered
aircraft carrier) to be deployed in Japan. The USS George
Washington, which is the only one nuclear-powered aircraft carrier
to be home-ported outside the United States out of the 10
nuclear-powered flattops possessed by the U.S. Navy, belongs to the
Seventh Fleet, whose remit encompasses East Asia to the Indian
Ocean. In addition to being prepared for contingencies on the Korean
Peninsula and the Taiwan Strait, the vessel is expected to serve
actively in unstable areas, such as Afghanistan and Iraq.

TOKYO 00002655 008 OF 009

13) Former Prime Minister Koizumi to retire from politics

SANKEI (Top play) (Lead paragraph)
September 26, 2008

Former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi, 66, yesterday conveyed his
intention to retire from politics without running in the next House
of Reprehensive election, to former Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori and
other ruling Liberal Democratic Party officials. As his successor,
his second son, the 27-year-old Shinjiro Koizumi, will likely run
for the next Lower House race from his father's Kanagawa No. 11
constituency (in Miura City, Kanagawa Prefecture). The former prime
minister plans to explain his decision to his supporters in Kanagawa
on Sept. 27. During his premiership from April 2001 through
September 2005, Koizumi pushed ahead with his structural reform
initiative, including postal privatization. He served in office for
1,980 days, making him the third-longest serving prime minister in
the postwar period. The planned retirement of Koizumi is shocking
the so-called Koizumi children, who were elected in the 2005 Lower
House election for the first time to the Diet. Koizumi's retirement
will also likely have an impact on the general election.

14) Three opposition parties suggest deciding date of Lower House
dissolution through talks

NIKKEI (Page 1) (Excerpts)
September 26, 2008

The Diet Affairs Committee chairmen of ruling and opposition parties
conferred on how to treat a fiscal 2008 supplementary budget bill in
the Diet Building yesterday. The Democratic Party of Japan, the
Social Democratic Party, and the People's New Party formally
presented a plan to respond to a vote on the bill in the House of
Councillors if the ruling coalition agrees to hold deliberations for
two days in both Houses of the Diet. The ruling side just replied it
will look into it. Whether they should accept the proposal or not
will be discussed in the ruling camp from now.

15) Nakayama to be named special advisor on abduction issue

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
September 26, 2008

Chief Cabinet Secretary Takeo Kawamura announced yesterday at a
press conference that former State Minister for the Abduction Issue
Kyoko Nakayama would be appointed as special advisor to the prime
minister on the abduction issue. The aim is to show the government's
stand of placing importance on dealing with the issue of North
Korea's abductions of Japanese nationals. Her appointment will be
formally decided in a cabinet meeting today.

16) Japan, U.S. to introduce new system to simultaneously grant
patents filed in both countries

NIKKEI (Page 5) (Full)
September 26, 2008

The governments of Japan and the U.S. held a meeting in Geneva and
agreed to set up a new patent system. Under the new system, if a
company files patent applications with Japan and the U.S., the two
countries will complete screening them and grant patents to the

TOKYO 00002655 009 OF 009


company nearly simultaneously. The Japanese Patent Office and the
U.S. Patent and Trademark Office will share information about the
contents and progress in screening of the applications in starting
screening applications. The two governments plan to introduce the
new system in some areas starting this fall on a trial basis and to
increase areas applicable for the system next year.

Among leading companies that are accelerating globalization, there
are many cases in which patent applications are filed in more than
one country. But countries have used different standards for
screening, and their speeds are also different. If the new system
works successfully, other countries might begin to introduce a
similar system.

In order to share information on screening in advance, the Patent
Office and the Patent and Trademark Office will connect their
systems. The two countries will also coordinate the scope and
definition of patents in the future to facilitate the screening of
applications.

SCHIEFFER

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Werewolf: Gordon Campbell On North Korea, Neo-Nazism, And Milo

With a bit of luck the planet won’t be devastated by nuclear war in the next few days. US President Donald Trump will have begun to fixate on some other way to gratify his self-esteem – maybe by invading Venezuela or starting a war with Iran. More>>

Victory Declared: New Stabilisation Funding From NZ As Mosul Is Retaken

New Zealand has congratulated the Iraqi government on the successful liberation of Mosul from ISIS after a long and hard-fought campaign. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Current US Moves Against North Korea

If Martians visited early last week, they’d probably be scratching their heads as to why North Korea was being treated as a potential trigger for global conflict... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Lessons From Corbyn’s Campaign

Leaving partisan politics aside – and ignoring Jeremy Corbyn’s sensational election campaign for a moment – it has to be said that Britain is now really up shit creek... More>>

ALSO:

Another US Court: Fourth Circuit Rules Muslim Ban Discriminatory

ACLU: Step by step, point by point, the court laid out what has been clear from the start: The president promised to ban Muslims from the United States, and his executive orders are an attempt to do just that. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 
  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC