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Cablegate: Daily Summary of Japanese Press 12/19/08

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RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 6924
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL 2943
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 3015

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 07 TOKYO 003466

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 12/19/08

INDEX:

(1) Verification of SDF Iraq dispatch: Japan-U.S. honeymoon clouded
over, with no prospects in sight for international contributions
(Asahi)

(2) Editorial: Japan should deepen security partnership with
Australia (Yomiuri)

(3) Interview with commander Wiercinski on first anniversary of
establishment of forward-deployed command -- Focus is on Japan;
relationship with GSDF is good (Asahi)

(4) Obama's Asia policy may incline toward China, while relations
with Japan could become icy (Sankei)

(5) Editorial: Child porn regulation; No more abuse of children
(Mainichi)

ARTICLES:

(1) Verification of SDF Iraq dispatch: Japan-U.S. honeymoon clouded
over, with no prospects in sight for international contributions

ASAHI (Page 3) (Abridged)
December 19, 2008

"This means the end of an era." A senior Foreign Ministry official
made this comment yesterday on the withdrawal of Self-Defense Force
troops from Iraq.

Although the world was divided over the Iraq war, former Prime
Minister Koizumi quickly expressed his support for the war and won
U.S. President Bush's faith. Motohiro Ono, a senior researcher at
the Middle East Research Committee, said: "First and foremost, the
SDF dispatch means Japan's cooperation with the U.S. Looking back on
the days of the Koizumi administration, this was extremely
significant as leverage toward the U.S." Diplomatic officials
believe that this gave more leeway to Japan's diplomacy.

Japan's diplomacy toward North Korea can be cited as a typical case.
Koizumi made two visits to North Korea without prior in-depth
coordination with the U.S. A senior Foreign Ministry official said:
"He was able to do so because President Bush totally trusted what
Prime Minister Koizumi did."

But the situation has completely changed. Many in Japan are
dissatisfied at Washington's delisting of North Korea as a state
sponsor of terrorism in defiance of Japan's opposition. Prime
Minister Aso also used the expression "discontent" in reaction to
the U.S. move. A senior Foreign Ministry official said: "We
believed that Japan's contribution in Iraq ushered Japan-U.S.
relations into a new phase, but it might have been a bubble age."

The SDF's dispatch to Iraq was its first wartime mission on the
front. Its operations in that country have left major questions
about international contributions by the SDF.

It was possible for Japan to send SDF troops to a dangerous area
that was in the line of fire, because a virtual safety zone was
created under a law.


TOKYO 00003466 002 OF 007


The Nagoya High Court designated Baghdad, in which the Air
Self-Defense Force (ASDF) carried out operations, as a combat zone.
Trench mortars were fired at the SDF camp, and casualties were
caused even among Dutch troops who were responsible for maintaining
security in that area. House of Representatives member Masahiko
Sato, who headed the first Iraq reconstruction-assistance group of
the Ground Self-Defense Force (GSDF), commented: "We felt we were
engaging in actual combat, unlike past overseas activities by the
SDF."

A government source said: "ASDF and GSDF members increased their
experience." But many of those dispatched were frustrated. Strict
restrictions were being imposed on the use of weapons. Sato said:
"We were conducting operations under a system in which we cannot
take any action even if our group member is shot or even if a UN
member near us is attacked."

The government looked into the possibility of dispatching GSDF
transport helicopters and ASDF cargo planes to Afghanistan in the
process of studying a withdrawal of ASDF from Iraq. The studies were
in response to the shift of priority by the U.S. and North Atlantic
Treaty Organization (NATO) member countries from Iraq to
Afghanistan. The GSDF, however, remained cautious, with a senior
member saying: "Afghanistan is more dangerous than Iraq." When the
Defense Agency was upgraded to the status of full ministry status,
the government designated international contributions as a main
mission of the SDF. What SDF troops experienced in Iraq has not been
overviewed, and prospects for future SDF operations are nowhere in
sight.

Diet debate on a permanent law to send SDF troops overseas has been
up in the air as a result of repeated changes in the post of prime
minister.

(2) Editorial: Japan should deepen security partnership with
Australia

YOMIURI (Page 3) (Full)
December 19, 2008

Australia is an important partner of Japan in the Asia-Pacific
region. Since last year, Japan and Australia have developed their
strategic security cooperation. We hope that the two countries will
further deepen this cooperation.

The Japanese and Australian governments held a second round of
consultations between their foreign and defense ministers in Tokyo.
In this two-plus-two ministerial meeting, the two governments agreed
to expand multilateral cooperation involving Japan, the United
States, Australia, and other countries in the region, in addition to
bilateral defense cooperation between Japan and Australia.

The Japan-Australia two-plus-two ministerial started on the basis of
a bilateral joint declaration on security in March last year. In
September last year, the two countries formulated an action plan to
shape the joint declaration.

In Asia, there are still security concerns to both Japan and
Australia. North Korea is developing nuclear weapons and missiles,
and China is growing into a military power.

Japan and Australia should cooperate in a wide range of areas,

TOKYO 00003466 003 OF 007


including emergency humanitarian assistance for disaster relief
operations, international terrorism, weapons of mass destruction,
drugs, and money laundering. It is important that the two countries
work together in the various areas and build a relationship of
mutual trust.

When it comes to joint training for disaster relief activities,
Japan and Australia should not only conduct bilateral drills but
also should go ahead with multilateral ones involving the Untied
States and Southeast Asian countries. That will be more effective.

Japan and Australia are both allied with the United States. A
stronger partnership between Japan and Australia will complement the
alliance between Japan and the United States and will also make it
even more rocksolid.

In the two-plus-two ministerial, Japan and Australia also decided to
start discussing a legal framework for information security along
with their pooling of security intelligence information. This is a
new initiative.

If Japan and Australia can reach an effective agreement, Japan may
consider entering into a similar pact with other countries.

It is also important that the Self-Defense Forces and Australian
forces promote defense exchanges at various levels and expand their
cooperation in such areas as logistics for international peace
cooperation.

The Australian forces, which have 51,000 troops, have sent a total
of 3,800 troops overseas, including 1,000 each in Iraq and
Afghanistan.

Meanwhile, the SDF has about 250,000-strong troops. However, Japan
has only several hundred troops on overseas missions, including
vessels in the Indian Ocean. Australia is outstandingly proactive in
international activities, even though it is less threatened.

The SDF, if it expands its international activities from now on,
should have more opportunities to cooperate with Australian troops
in third countries.

Australian Prime Minister Rudd was a diplomat in his career, and he
speaks Chinese. When he came into office in December last year, he
was believed to weigh China in his foreign policy. However, he has
been taking a realistic policy that attaches importance to relations
with the United States and Japan, though not so much like former
Prime Minister Howard.

Diplomacy is also a game for how to gain more friends in the
international arena. Australia is enthusiastic about security
cooperation, and we hope that Japan will build a stable relationship
with Australia.

(3) Interview with commander Wiercinski on first anniversary of
establishment of forward-deployed command -- Focus is on Japan;
relationship with GSDF is good

ASAHI, Kanagawa Edition (Page 28) (Full)
December 18, 2008

Tomomi Oshima, Mitsuo Sekine

TOKYO 00003466 004 OF 007

Maj. Gen. Francis Wiercinski, commander of the U.S. Army I Corps
forward-deployed command at Camp Zama (Zama, Sagamihara) who is
concurrently Commanding General of U.S. Army Japan, gave an
interview to the Asahi Shimbun on December 17 ahead of the command's
first anniversary on December 19. Commander Wiercinski emphatically
said: "The focus of our mission is on the security of Japan. We are
a different organization from the main force that will be deployed
to the Middle East."

I Corps, headquartered at Fort Lewis, Washington, is responsible for
the Asia-Pacific. The main force will be deployed to Iraq next year.
An anti-base group and others have taken deep interest in the
relationship between this and the forward-deployed command, set up
at Camp Zama as a symbol of the realignment of U.S. Forces Japan, in
relation to the Far East clause of the U.S.-Japan Security Treaty.

Commander Wiercinski gave the interview at the command center
housing a dozen or so personal computers and other communications
equipment. He explained: "This is the forward-deployed command.
There are no tanks here. We are working to make the center a venue
for operational command, control and communications. We are planning
to train the staff personnel for about one year."

He went to explain: "The forward-deployed command is a different
organization from the main force that will be deployed to Iraq. Our
ultimate objective is to join Yama Sakura (Japan-U.S. joint
on-the-map command post exercise), and we will conduct exercises for
that. At present, the relationship with the Self-Defense Force is
very good."

The plan is to train the personnel as operators at first and then to
move onto group training. Once the Ground Self-Defense Force Central
Readiness Force is relocated to Zama, seats will be set up for SDF
personnel to share command and control duties, according to the
commander.

Regarding the relocation of the main unit of I Corps to Zama, Maj.
Gen. Wiercinski also said: "I Corps has thousands of troops, so in
terms of number, it is not possible to relocating them all to Zama,"
adding, "Several main members might come, but nothing is decided at
present."

About a future plan on the size of the forward-deployed command that
has grown from 30 personnel to 70-75, Commander Wiercinski said: "At
present, there is no schedule to increase the staff. The U.S. Army's
top priority is the war on terror in Iraq and Afghanistan. Although
the number of personnel at the forward-deployed command changes
depending on that, but the size will not exceed 300, as was agreed
upon between the United States and Japan."

(4) Obama's Asia policy may incline toward China, while relations
with Japan could become icy

SANKEI (Page 8) (Full)
December 17, 2008

Although President-elect Barack Obama is in favor of a big
government and inclines toward liberalism in carrying out domestic
policies, he is a cool pragmatist in the diplomatic field. Obama is
expected to become a calculating leader with excellent planning
ability.

TOKYO 00003466 005 OF 007

The Japanese Embassy to the U.S. and other institutes have stepped
up efforts to figure out what views the Japanese policy team of the
Obama administration has of Japan and Asia.

The Embassy held a Japan-U.S. strategic conference to discuss future
options for the Japan-U.S. alliance at a hotel in Washington in
October, just before the presidential election, inviting 20 experts
from Japan and the U.S.

Ambassador to the U.S. Ichiro Fujisaki invited experts from the U.S.
and also Japan, but his aim was to find out the incoming
administration's views toward Japan and Asia. Discussion was focused
on: (1) bilateral cooperation; (2) global issues; and (3) future
options for the Japan-U.S. alliance.

Kurt Campbell, former deputy assistant secretary of defense, came
late in the morning session. Campbell said: "I had been called in by
Obama," according to informed sources. Although observers thought
Campbell's entry in the Obama administration would be difficult
because he supported another candidate in the presidential campaign,
the situation seems to have changed.

According to Campbell and Jeffrey Bader, who served as China desk
director in the State Department under the Clinton administration,
the Japan-U.S. alliance will also be the bedrock of Washington's
diplomacy under the Obama administration, but if Japan is unwilling
to contribute according to its position, relations between the two
countries could deteriorate.

Obama has said: "The focus of attention in the war on terror should
be on Afghanistan and Pakistan." He is expected to ask Japan to
offer other assistance than the Maritime Self-Defense Force's (MSDF)
refueling operation in the Indian Ocean.

Among the SDF troops dispatched to southern Iraq, none was killed,
but in Afghanistan, it is difficult to find a non-combat zone. Some
members of the German unit carrying out activities in a considerably
peaceful region in the northern part of Afghanistan were killed or
injured. If Ground Self-Defense Force troops are dispatched to that
nation, it is inconceivable that every member will be able to return
home uninjured.

There is an option of dispatching Japanese P3C patrol planes to the
Indian Ocean to provide information and also as measures to
eliminate pirates in waters off Somalia. Information supplement is
expected to contribute more than the refueling service to
strengthening the alliance.

There is also an idea of sending MSDF vessels to protect Japanese
tankers from pirates. If Coast Guard officers are onboard the ships,
the issue of the right to collective self-defense will not be
created. Japan depends on the Middle East for 90 PERCENT of
domestic oil demand. Oil there is shipped to Japan through waters
off Somalia.

Afraid of opposition from the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ), the
government has yet to respond to the U.S. military's request that
Japan dispatch P3C planes to the Indian Ocean. This request should
be in line with the DPJ's policy of giving priority to the United
Nations, because the UN Security Council has extended its resolution
authorizing anti-piracy operations.

TOKYO 00003466 006 OF 007

In view of its pragmatist bent, the Obama administration might turn
away from Japan if Japan remains unresponsive toward such requests,
complaining that Japan has not fulfilled the necessary conditions it
should fulfill as an ally.

The U.S. could ask China to perform the role it asked Japan to play.
That would be a nightmare for Japan. Some voiced this apprehension
when the MSDF withdrew from the Indian Ocean last year with the
expiration of the antiterrorism special measures law. This case did
not occur because there are hardliners toward China in the Bush
administration. Nobody can tell what will happen once the Obama
administration is inaugurated.

Obama diplomacy will give priority not to ideology but to cost and
efficiency. The Obama administration is expected to call on its
allies through international institutions to act based on the
principle of reciprocity. Such nuclear powers as China, Russia and
North Korea loom across the Sea of Japan. Once the U.S. joins hands
with China on the military front, the Japan-U.S. alliance will lose
its meaning.

(5) Editorial: Child porn regulation; No more abuse of children

MAINICHI (Page 5) (Full)
December 19, 2008

There is a growing call for revising regulations on child porn and
Internet images depicting sexually exploited and abused children.

The Third World Congress against Sexual Exploitation of Children and
Adolescents was held last month in Rio de Janeiro, hosted by the
Brazilian government and UNICEF. Delegates from 40 countries and
non-governmental organizations (NGO) compiled a strict action
program that regulates simple possession of child porn, viewing such
and materials, such as manga and anime depicting explicit images of
sexually abused children. In Japan, the simple possession of child
porn and materials depicting such for personal viewing are not
punishable. The delay in Japan's approach was visible at the
congress.

Japan at its first conference held in Stockholm in 1996 came under
fire for sending tourists for child prostitution to Southeast Asia.
In response to the criticism, Japan in 1999 enacted the Law for
Punishing Acts related to Child Prostitution and Child Pornography.
It was also pointed out recently that among the G-8 nations, Japan
and Russia do not ban simple possession of child porn and are major
suppliers of such.

Regulations must be set in a cautious manner so as not to threaten
the constitutionally-guaranteed freedom of expression. There is a
flood of child porn, many of which depict children being sexually
abused -- something that should be called evidence of crimes. Since
it is difficult to determine the age of victims, the date when those
pictures were taken and confirm their identity, police
investigations are not keeping up with the actual situation. We
absolutely must not overlook the serious abuse of human rights
involving children.

Many children were forced to become photographic subjects or
victimized, as they were unable to distinguish between right and
wrong. Photos taken are instantaneously distributed throughout the

TOKYO 00003466 007 OF 007


world with the use of file-swapping software. It is impossible to
retract distributed images. Those images continue to do harm
indefinitely. It is intolerable to think that the victims' mental
trauma will amplify as they grow older. The damage has become far
more serious, compared with the time when there was not the
Internet. Every single citizen should be aware that conventional
regulations are not effective.

A nonpartisan group of lawmakers had planned to draft an amendment
to the Law for Punishing Acts related to Child Prostitution and
Child Pornography with the possibility of making simple possession
of child porn punishable. However, due in part to the divided Diet,
discussions on the issue has yet to be deepened. Based on the
outcome of the global conference, both the ruling and opposition
parties should confer on the matter immediately and make the
possession and collection of child porn punishable, after working
out requirements in precise terms so as not to let the police
overuse their authority.

Police authorities must strengthen control of child porn. They have
asked Internet providers to eliminate images of children being
sexually exploited or blocked the inflow of such images from abroad.
However, we must say that such an approach is lukewarm. There are
many cases that can be punished under the existing law, including
the possession of child porn with the aim of providing them. We want
police authorities to conduct investigation aggressively so as to
prevent the victimization of children from spreading further.

ZUMWALT

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