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Cablegate: Daily Summary of Japanese Press 11/07/08

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UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 12 TOKYO 003099

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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 11/07/08

INDEX:

(1) Obama to strengthen alliance between U.S. and Japan; Tells Prime
Minister in telephone conversation (Yomiuri)

(2) Obama wins U.S. presidency; Policy toward Japan unclear;
Government expedites efforts to strengthen ties (with Obama
transition team) in dealing with abduction, financial crisis, war on
terror (Ryukyu Shimpo)

(3) Japan may be pressed to end policy of prioritizing Japan-U.S.
relations (Mainichi)

(4) Who is Japan's Obama? Gap in Japanese and U.S. political systems
(Tokyo Shimbun)

(5) Japan may be pressed to end policy of prioritizing Japan-U.S.
relations (Okinawa Times)

(6) U.S. ambassador negative that there will be delay in
Guam-transfer plan (Okinawa Times)

(7) Slight change in U.S. trade policy likely under Obama
administration: Observation in Japan is that pace of liberalization
will slow (Asahi)

(8) MSDF education material includes expression, "The Japanese
people have been held captive to a slavish mentality" (Asahi)

(9) Summoning of Tamogami may hurt ruling coalition; His retirement
drawing fire (Yomiuri)

(10) TOP HEADLINES

(11) EDITORIALS

(12) Prime Minister's schedule, November 6 (Nikkei)

ARTICLES:

(1) Obama to strengthen alliance between U.S. and Japan; Tells Prime
Minister in telephone conversation

YOMIURI (Page 1) (Excerpts)
Eve., November 7, 2008

Prime Minister Aso this morning held a 10-minute telephone
conversation, his first, with President-elect Barack Obama from his
office in the Kantei (Official Residence). The two agreed to
strengthen alliance ties between Japan and the United States and to
cooperate to deal with the global financial crisis. The Prime
Minister expressed his desire to meet with Mr. Obama as quickly as
possible.

The Prime Minister congratulated Mr. Obama for winning the
presidential election, and he then stressed, "The first principle of
Japan's diplomacy is to strengthen the Japan-U.S. alliance." He
brought up the Afghanistan issue, North Korea's nuclear program, the
abduction issue, while stressing, "I would like to closely cooperate
on the various challenges that the international community now
faces." Obama responded, "We will tackle the issues together, and I,
too, would like to strengthen the alliance."

TOKYO 00003099 002 OF 012

(2) Obama wins U.S. presidency; Policy toward Japan unclear;
Government expedites efforts to strengthen ties (with Obama
transition team) in dealing with abduction, financial crisis, war on
terror

RYUKYU SHIMPO (Page 2) (Full)
November 6, 2008

In the wake of Democratic Senator Barack Obama's victory in the U.S.
presidential election, the government decided on Nov. 5 to
strengthen relations with the Obama transition team to closely
monitor the incoming administration's approach. The government wants
to communicate with (the Obama team) at an early date in dealing
with the North Korean nuclear and abduction issues, the war on
terror in Afghanistan, the worldwide financial crisis, global
warming, and other issues.

Chances are high that Obama, who is to take office after eight years
of the Republican Bush administration, will appoint new persons as
officers responsible for Asia policy, according a Japan-U.S.
relations source. Building ties with the Obama side is likely to
take time.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Takeo Kawamura said in a press briefing
yesterday: "Mr. Obama puts high priority on Japan-U.S. relations."
In response to an indication that Obama puts weight on dialogue in
dealing with North Korea, Kawamura simply said: "We will make
efforts to obtain strong support and understanding from Mr. Obama
toward the policy of the Japanese government."

Obama even envisages a U.S.-DPRK summit. "We cannot sense to what
extent he understands the abduction issue," a Foreign Ministry
source said. The government intends to ask the United States not to
lean overly toward dialogue before progress is made on the abduction
issue.

Obama is also calling for the continuation of the Maritime
Self-Defense Force's refueling mission in the Indian Ocean as part
of Japan's assistance to Afghanistan. In July, the Bush
administration conveyed its expectation to Tokyo that Japan would
extend fiscal support worth about 2 trillion yen if it was difficult
to dispatch SDF troops. Japan has not responded to it.

There is a possibility that the Obama administration will press hard
Japan for greater contributions and that Prime Minister Taro Aso
will find himself on the horns of a dilemma between foreign and
domestic affairs. Regarding the issue of relocating Futenma Air
Station to a site within the prefecture, as well, the next U.S.
administration is likely to urge Japan to put an early end to the
tempestuous coordination with affected municipalities as part of the
realignment of U.S. forces in Japan. The new administration might
also ask Japan to make greater financial contributions to the
relocation of U.S. Marines from Okinawa to Guam which goes hand in
hand with the Futenma relocation plan. The government is keeping a
watchful eye (on the Obama team).

Obama has indicated that he would proactively address such issues as
global warming and nuclear disarmament. Some in the Foreign Ministry
think that Japan-U.S. relations will expand.

Reactions by political parties in Okinawa

TOKYO 00003099 003 OF 012

Liberal Democratic Party Okinawa chapter)

We want to see President-elect Obama exhibit strong leadership,
Japan and the United States forge relations of greater trust, make
efforts to resolve outstanding issues, and reorganize, reduce and
realign the U.S. bases in the prefecture. We expect he will work
hard to reduce the burden on the Okinawa public.

Social Democratic Party Okinawa chapter

Obama's victory has naturally resulted form the Bush
administration's Iraq war and the failed financial and economic
polities centered on market fundamentalism. Both the United States
and Japan need change. We will be watching the Obama
administration's departure from market fundamentalism and its
security and Asia policies.

Japanese Communist Party Okinawa Committee

The election results reflect the public criticism of the Bush
administration's domestic and foreign policies. Although Obama
advocates change, he is calling for more troops to Afghanistan at
the same time. Aiming to break away from the abnormal subjugation to
the United States, we will fight while upholding the realignment of
U.S. forces and opposition to building new bases.

New Komeito Prefectural Headquarters

The United States will have a black President for the first time in
its history. It is an epoch-making event breaking the racial walls.
We expect (the United States) will exercise leadership in assuaging
concerns over the global financial turmoil and bringing about global
peace by promoting the elimination of nuclear weapons under the new
President. We also expect the settlement of Okinawa base issues,
including the status of forces agreement and the realignment and
reduction of bases here.

Democratic Party of Japan Okinawa chapter

The Bush maladministration that has entangled the world in the war
of aggression and brought about the economic failure will now end.
The LDP-New Komeito coalition that has blindly followed the United
States will experience the agonies of death. In order to deal with
President-elect Obama, who is intellectual and idealistic, Japan
needs an Ozawa-led DPJ administration. The time of change has come
to Japan as well.

Social Mass Party

It has been 63 years since the end of WWII, and U.S. bases still
exist in Okinawa. The new President must realize the pain and
suffering of people in Okinawa. The Japanese government should
negotiate with the Obama administration on the elimination of U.S.
bases in order to relieve Okinawa residents of the heavy weight of
bases.

Sozo

A change of government is what the American people have hoped for.
This wave of change is likely to have a direct impact on Okinawa,
which hosts the bulk of U.S. bases (in Japan). It is necessary to

TOKYO 00003099 004 OF 012


closely watch how the prefectural government will deal with (the new
U.S. administration).

People's New Party Okinawa chapter

We would like to see the incoming U.S. administration give impetus
to the diplomacy and defense -- especially the realignment and
reduction of U.S. forces in Okinawa -- of Japan and the United
States. What the prefectural government expects of the winner of the
U.S. presidential election will become clear.

(3) Japan may be pressed to end policy of prioritizing Japan-U.S.
relations

MAINICHI (Page 9) (Full)
November 6, 2008

By Noriko Hama, professor at Doshisha University

The Bush administration has classified countries that agree to its
policies as allies and countries opposed to them as enemies, as part
of an America-first policy. In contrast, President-elect Barack
Obama, who has advocated the need for change in the U.S., seems to
be leaning toward multilateralism. Changes also may appear in
Japan-U.S. relations. Even if Japan continues to label Japan-U.S.
relations as the cornerstone of its foreign policy, as it has done
in the days of the Bush administration, the situation could change
in that attention will be no long paid to Japan.

After assuming office in January, "President" Obama will be pressed
to deal with such domestic challenges as containing the ongoing
financial crisis and avoiding recession. Given this, Japan as a
mature country in Asia should take measures to stabilize its economy
and to support such emerging countries as Association of Southeast
Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries. If Japan fails to become a presence
that is relied on by other countries, the weight of their economic
ties with Japan will drop.

Based on the conventional Democratic Party's policy stance, some
observers expect Ozawa to take a protectionist stance in trade
policy. Judging from the remarks Obama made in the campaign,
however, I do not think he will move to destroy the WTO-centered
multinational free-trade structure. Even so, under the gloomy
economic situation in the U.S., protectionist pressure is certainly
growing to protect domestic auto and other industries. How the Obama
administration will be able to balance such problems will be a test
of his abilities.

(4) Who is Japan's Obama? Gap in Japanese and U.S. political
systems

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Page 22) (Full)
November 7, 2008

U.S. President-elect Barack Obama, a Democrat, is 47 years old.
Feeling empathy for a young leader' calling for "change," Americans
have entrusted the control of their country to him. Will there be a
generational change in Japanese politics, too? Who is Japan's
Obama?

Akiyoshi Yamamura, a 48-year-old political journalist, said: "There
are three Japanese politicians of Obama's general caliber, who are

TOKYO 00003099 005 OF 012


ambitious to become prime minister."

The three include Akira Nagatsuma, 48, a House of Representatives
member belonging to the Democratic Party of Japan, who is called
"Mr. Pension;" Shigefumi Matsuzawa, 50, governor of Kanagawa
Prefecture; and Hiroshi Tanaka, 44, mayor of Yokohama City.

Yamamura praised the three politicians, and said:

"Mr. Obama has power to continue to call for "change" even at a time
when he faces a headwind. Japanese lawmakers are generally lacking
in such drive, but those three are exceptions."

Yamamura, however, pointed out: "With the current financial crisis,
Japanese people are gradually becoming conservative in order to
protect their livelihoods. There will not be a 'change boom' for the
time being. They should take advantage of this opportunity to
stimulate society."

Yamamura also cited the names of Takuro Morinaga, a 15-year-old
economic analyst, 51, and Tetsuya Miyazaki, a 46-year-old
commentator. He explained:

"In the past, they made extreme remarks on daytime television talk
shows, but they have recently talked in a well-balanced manner. They
know much about the economy, which is the public's major concern."

Dave Specter, a TV producer, pins his hopes on the 39-year-old Osaka
Gov. Toru Hashimoto. He highly praised Hashimoto's positive stance
of entering the political world, quitting his law practice and jobs
on TV.

However, Specter cited the need for a review of Japan's election
system as a 'Japanese version of change.' He said:

"I can't believe that even though young people are asked to
participate in politics, the holding of election campaigns using the
Internet is not allowed. Since just delivering outdoor speeches is
not attractive, capable young people do not aim the sights on
entering politics."

Something that is dramatic occurs in an U.S. presidential election,
but such does not happen in an election of the Japanese prime
minister. This is because there are differences in the political
system between Japan and the United Stats.

Japan has a parliamentary cabinet system and a prime minister is
elected from among Diet members. In the case of the Liberal
Democratic Party (LDP), party members elected at least five times to
the Lower House can become a prime ministerial candidate. Therefore,
the LDP Lower House members are required to spend enormous time
until becoming prime minister. Shinzo Abe became prime minister at
the age of 52, the youngest age in the postwar period. There is
nobody who became prime minister in their forties. It is difficult
for such to happen in the LDP.

However, in the United States where president is elected directly by
the people, politicians like Obama, who do not have much experience
in politics, can become president by popular vote. Keiko Iiboshi, a
talent and essayist, 45, said: "I felt envy at the United States
where anybody has a chance to become president." She then said:


TOKYO 00003099 006 OF 012


"Although some Japanese prime ministers have influence even after
they resign, U.S. presidents leave politics once they leave office.
Unless the Japanese political system is changed to one under which
lawmakers defeated in a prime ministerial election would be required
to leave the political world, the next generations will not come
out."

Iiboshi lamented that she could not find anyone like Obama among
Japanese politicians.

There are 19 Diet members who were born in 1961, the same year as
Obama.

Diet member born in 1961

Lower House member Upper House member
Masaaki Akaike (LDP) Tsutomu Oshima (DPJ)
Tatsuya Ito (LDP) Kusuo Oshima (DPJ)
Yasushi Kaneko (LDP) Minoru Kawasaki (DPJ)
Hiroshi Kawauchi (DPJ) Yoshimasa Hayashi (LDP)
Yukari Sato (LDP)
Tetsuya Shiokawa (JCP)
Mikio Shimoji (PNP)
Hideo Jinpu (DPJ)
Kaname Tajima (DPJ)
Sanae Takaichi (LDP)
Koichi Takemasa (DPJ)
Hiroshi Hase (LDP)
Yutaka Banno (DPJ)
Kenji Wakamiya (LDP)
Shu Watanabe (DPJ)

LDP = Liberal Democratic Party
DPJ = Democratic Party of Japan
JCP = Japanese Communist Party
PNP = People's New Party

(5) Japan may be pressed to end policy of prioritizing Japan-U.S.
relations

MAINICHI (Page 9) (Full)
November 6, 2008

By Noriko Hama, professor at Doshisha University

The Bush administration has classified countries that agree to its
policies as allies and countries opposed to them as enemies, as part
of an America-first policy. In contrast, President-elect Barack
Obama, who has advocated the need for change in the U.S., seems to
be leaning toward multilateralism. Changes also may appear in
Japan-U.S. relations. Even if Japan continues to label Japan-U.S.
relations as the cornerstone of its foreign policy, as it has done
in the days of the Bush administration, the situation could change
in that attention will be no long paid to Japan.

After assuming office in January, "President" Obama will be pressed
to deal with such domestic challenges as containing the ongoing
financial crisis and avoiding recession. Given this, Japan as a
mature country in Asia should take measures to stabilize its economy
and to support such emerging countries as Association of Southeast
Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries. If Japan fails to become a presence
that is relied on by other countries, the weight of their economic

TOKYO 00003099 007 OF 012


ties with Japan will drop.

Based on the conventional Democratic Party's policy stance, some
observers expect Ozawa to take a protectionist stance in trade
policy. Judging from the remarks Obama made in the campaign,
however, I do not think he will move to destroy the WTO-centered
multinational free-trade structure. Even so, under the gloomy
economic situation in the U.S., protectionist pressure is certainly
growing to protect domestic auto and other industries. How the Obama
administration will be able to balance such problems will be a test
of his abilities.

(6) U.S. ambassador negative that there will be delay in
Guam-transfer plan

OKINAWA TIMES (Page 2) (Full)
November 7, 2008

(Tokyo)

U.S. Ambassador to Japan Thomas Schieffer yesterday expressed a
negative view about a possible delay in the planned transfer of
Marines in Okinawa to Guam. In reference to a comment made by Adm.
Timothy Keating, commander of the Pacific Command, indicating that
there would be a delay in the Marines-transfer plan, Schieffer said:
"A postponement (of the timing for the transfer) will not serve U.S.
and Japanese national interests."

The ambassador said: "I don't know what specific construction work
has delayed the relocation plan and how the increase in the total
transfer cost agreed on between the U.S. and Japan has affected the
plan. But I think that if the plan is implemented as soon as
possible, superior facilities will be built at a smaller cost."

Asked if the Guam transfer plan and the Futenma relocation plan are
a package, the ambassador replied: "We will be happy to move
(Marines out of Okinawa to Guam) as quickly as possible, but until a
Futenma replacement facility is ready, they cannot move, because
that would reduce the capability of the U.S. forces to react to
contingencies in the Pacific region."

On the next administration's approach to the realignment of U.S.
forces in Japan, Schieffer said in a news conference following
Barack Obama's victory in the U.S. presidential election: "No matter
who leads the government, the U.S. will naturally implement the
measures agreed on between the two countries for the sake of mutual
benefits."

Asked about his future course, the ambassador indicated that he
would leave his current post with the change of government,
remarking: "My tenure will end when the president's term of office
expires on Jan. 20.

(7) Slight change in U.S. trade policy likely under Obama
administration: Observation in Japan is that pace of liberalization
will slow

ASAHI (Page 6) (Full)
November 7, 2008

Barack Obama won the U.S. presidency, putting up reform as his
slogan. During the campaign period, he took a protectionist stance

TOKYO 00003099 008 OF 012


regarding trade policy, the Democratic Party's traditional stance.
However, he is expected to take a pragmatic policy line, once he
assumes the presidency. As such, there seems to be a slim chance
that the kind of Japan-U.S. trade friction that occurred in the
1990s will reemerge. However, there is concern about trade friction
with China.

The Democratic Party, whose support base includes trade unions, is
believed to have a strong protectionist tendency. Obama is critical
of the Bush's trade liberalization policy. He opposed the free trade
agreement (FTA) with South Korea, which has yet to secure
Congressional approval, as disadvantageous to U.S. workers.

He also touched on the need to take a second look at the North
American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with Canada and Mexico, which
is already in force. The multilateral free trade talks (Doha Round)
under the World Trade Organization (WTO) broke down with the U.S.
confronting India and China in July. He supported the outcome.
However, Keio University Professor Fukunari Kimura noted that the
prevailing view is that since he took such a stance for the
election's sake, he would eventually move closer to the middle of
the road.

The new administration is expected to focus on measures to deal with
the financial crisis. Masahiro Sakurauchi, Deputy Division Director
of the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO), predicted, "The
priority order of trade is low. Trade is a field subject to public
criticism. He would not bring it up for the time being." Rikkyo
University Professor Kiyohiko Fukushima's projection is: "Since
globalization has progressed, no payback can be expected from
protectionist measures. Such measures would only slow the pace of
liberalization."

Trade friction between Japan and the U.S. intensified during the
Clinton administration. However, with the advancement of Japanese
companies into the U.S., U.S. trade deficit with Japan, which
accounted for about 70 PERCENT of its entire trade deficit in the
early 1990s, dropped to a little over 10 PERCENT . Japan Business
Federation (Nippon Keidanren) chairman Fujio Mitarai stressed:
"Japanese companies are contributing to the creation of jobs in the
U.S. through local production. Now is different from the time when
Japan adopted an export-oriented trade policy."

In the meantime, U.S. trade deficit with China topped 30 PERCENT of
its entire trade deficits in 2007. One senior Economy, Trade and
Industry Ministry official projected, "There will be more occasions
in which the two countries will take a joint step over such issues
as the protection of intellectual property rights, which Mr. Obama
attaches importance."

Will Mr. Obama take a hard-line stance to China?

"I will exercise all diplomatic tools available to me in order to
make China change." Obama made this reply to a letter of questions
sent by the National Council of Textile Organizations.

He also pointed out, "China's massive current-account surplus is
directly linked with exchange operations" and "It will bring about
significant imbalance that is undesirable for the global economy. It
will also cause problems within China." Obama thus blamed China for
its exchange policy." He also emphasized his differences from the
Bush administration, which took a cautious approach in identifying

TOKYO 00003099 009 OF 012


China as an exchange- manipulating country, by appointing Henry
Paulson to serve as treasury secretary.

China has adopted an export-curbing policy in order to ease trade
friction. As the financial crisis became serious, its economic
growth in the July-September quarter sharply dropped. China has come
up with a string of measures to shore up exports since July. The
rise in the exchange rate of the yuan, which shot up to 6 points
against the dollar in April, came to a halt. It made a
month-on-month fall in October.

Zou Gang, deputy chief of the Chinese Foreign Ministry press office
during a regular press conference on November 6 rebutted, "We
recognize that China has a problem of trade imbalance. However, the
U.S. should not lay the blame on China alone, in particular, the
exchange rage of the yuan." He continued, "China seeks the
continuation of free trade policy. It is wary of the emergence of
protectionism." The U.S. and China are in agreement on the need to
prevent the financial crisis from spreading further. However, there
seems to be little room for the two countries to make concessions
for the time being. There is even a possibility of confrontation
surfacing due to the change in administration in the U.S.

(8) MSDF education material includes expression, "The Japanese
people have been held captive to a slavish mentality"

ASAHI (Page 39) (Full)
November 7, 2008

"The Japanese people have lost confidence. They regard it as taboo
to have a sense of patriotism, not to mention speaking of it, and
they have been held captive to a slavish mentality."

The above expression is included in reference material formulated by
the Maritime Self-Defense Force Staff Office for moral education for
its members, it was found in a meeting yesterday of the House of
Councillors' Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee. Defense Minister
Hamada apologized for it, saying: "The expression gives us a sense
of discomfort."

Democratic Party of Japan lawmaker Haku Shinkun, who received a copy
of the material in question from the Defense Ministry, said: "I was
upset at the word 'senmin -- lowly people' (TN: A kind of slave
status in pre-modern Japan). This may be regarded as a sort of
discriminatory term. This is a problem." Hamada replied: "We will
fully examine the expression and if we judge it inappropriate, we
will change the wording."

This material is dated March 2002. The part in question was quoted
from a book (published in 1976) authored by a professor at another
university.

(9) Summoning of Tamogami may hurt ruling coalition; His retirement
drawing fire

YOMIURI (Page 4) (Abridged slightly)
November 7, 2008

There have been new developments since the dismissal of Toshio
Tamogami from the post of Air Self-Defense Force chief of staff due
to his essay on the Showa War and other events that were at variance
with the government's view. They include the revelation that 78 ASDF

TOKYO 00003099 010 OF 012


members submitted essays to the contest in which Tamogami won first
prize. The government and the ruling coalition might find themselves
in a difficult situation depending on what Tamogami says as an
unsworn witness before the House of Councillors Foreign Affairs and
Defense Committee on Nov. 11.

78 entries

The government is visibly shocked by the fact that 78 SDF members
sent essays to the contest. There is a possibility that the ASDF was
systematically involved in the contest.

Vice-Defense Minister Kohei Masuda indicated in a press conference
yesterday that the government would conduct a survey with a
disciplinary action in mind, saying: "If essays' contents deviated
significantly from the government's view, some sort of punitive
action might follow."

The Defense Ministry's survey has found that the Air Staff Office
had informed ASDF troops across the nation of how to enter the
contest as being helpful for brainstorming.

Democratic Party of Japan Upper House Caucus Chairman Azuma
Koshiishi indicated that his party would grill the government at the
Diet in order to find out if there was a systematic involvement in
the essay contest that collected essays from 78 ASDF members.

A former LDP cabinet minister said in a serious tone: "If SDF
personnel systemically released unchecked essays running counter to
the government's view, that is truly grave from a viewpoint of
civilian control."

Unexpected reaction

Before the Upper House Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee
yesterday, Defense Minister Yasukazu Hamada announced his intention
to ask Tamogami to voluntarily return his retirement allowance.

The ministry's step that allowed Tamogami to retire from the SDF
instead of taking disciplinary action against him has drawn fire
from both the ruling and opposition camps. "The defense minister
finds it necessary to urge the ex-ASDF chief to return his
retirement benefits," a government source said.

According to a Defense Ministry source, the ministry, after
dismissing Tamogami as ASDF chief of staff on Oct. 31, asked for his
concurrence to face disciplinary action by omitting a set of
examination prosecutors. But because he indicated that he would
fight by expressing his desire to debate whether what he did
constituted a violation of disciplinary rules, the ministry gave up
the option of taking disciplinary action against him. The ministry
announced that Tamogami retired as of Nov. 3, citing the mandatory
retirement age.

In the committee meeting yesterday, Defense Minister Hamada
explained: "A set of procedures for disciplinary action takes more
than 10 months. Salary must be paid during that period, so we
decided on the quickest step." Hamada also said regrettably: "We
thought he would retire voluntarily as he would acutely sense his
heavy responsibility following the demotion from the post of ASDF
chief of staff, but that did not happen."


TOKYO 00003099 011 OF 012


Aso sees no problem in the Defense Ministry's step

In response to a question from a reporter at the Prime Minister's
Office last night, Prime Minister Taro Aso indicated that there was
no problem in the Defense Ministry's step that allowed Toshio
Tamogami, 60, to retire under the age limit, saying: "Because he was
removed from office, he needed to abide by the mandatory retirement
age rule, and the matter had to be settled at that stage."

Retirement age for ASDF chief of staff is 62 and for lieutenant
general is 60. When Tamogami was demoted to lieutenant general on
Oct. 31, he was already 60. Aso asked: "Unless he was allowed to
retire, the government would have to keep paying his salary. Do you
think it's better to keep him?"

(10) TOP HEADLINES

Asahi, Mainichi, Yomiuri, and Tokyo Shimbun:
Toyota forecasts some 70 PERCENT fall in FY 2008 group operating
profit; Lowers estimate by 1 trillion yen

Nikkei:
European central banks cut interest rates, IMF projects negative
growth in Europe, Japan, U.S. in 2009

Sankei:
Parliamentary league agrees to tighten regulations on foreign
capital buyouts

Akahata:
Firing of hardworking temporary employees rampant among large
companies, including Mazda, Nissan, and Canon

(11) EDITORIALS

Asahi:
(1) Obama era: Japanese diplomacy also needs change
(2) Moriya sentences to jail term: Defense Ministry has long way to
go for rebuilding itself

Mainichi:
(1) Tamogami scandal: Government's responsibility must be clarified
(2) Court ruling on Moriya case signifies something more than crime
by vice-defense minister

Yomiuri:
(1) Even Toyota can't escape global woes
(2) Moriya trial: Recurrence of breach of trust must be prevented

Nikkei:
(1) More regional bureaus must be abolished following Prime
minister's order
(2) Toyota lowers projected profit by 1 trillion yen

Sankei:
(1) Russia's missile deployment raises unnecessary tension
(2) Amendment to financial function strengthening law requires
innovative ideas

Tokyo Shimbun:
(1) Amended financial function strengthening legislation designed to
offer fixed-rate assistance raises questions

TOKYO 00003099 012 OF 012


(2) Moriya ruling: Nature of Defense Ministry must be reexamined

Akahata:
(1) Social security council report calling for consumption tax hike
totally unconvincing

(12) Prime Minister's schedule, November 6

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
November 7, 2008

07:31
Took a walk around his private residence in Kamiyama-cho.

10:07
Met at Kantei with Decentralization Reform Council Chairman Niwa,
joined by Internal Affairs Minister Hatoyama. Met later with Shoko
Chukin Bank President Tetsuo Seki, followed by Ambassador to South
Africa Ozawa.

11:33
Met with former Swiss President Dyce (TN: phonetic).

12:57
Met with former Prime Minister Abe and former Finance Minister Ibuki
in Diet building.

13:02
Attended Lower House plenary session.

14:09
Met at Kantei with Minister of State for Declining Birthrate Obuchi,
followed by former Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Iwaki.

16:29
Met with Economic and Fiscal Policy Minister Yosano.

17:06
Met with Ambassador to Russia Saito, followed by LDP Administrative
Reform Promotion Headquarters chief Chuma.

18:03
Met with Chief Cabinet Secretary Kawamura.

19:12
Dined with secretaries in the restaurant Shima in Nihonbashi MM
building.

221:15
Met secretaries at the bar Golden Lion in Imperial Hotel.

23:20
Returned to his official residence.

SCHIEFFER

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