Cablegate: Japanese Morning Press Highlights 07/19/06

DE RUEHKO #3996/01 2000151
P 190151Z JUL 06





E.O. 12958: N/A



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

North Korea problem:
4) Prime Minister Koizumi during recent summit meeting urged
President Bush to hold bilateral talks with North Korea as only way
to achieve progress
5) Government as additional sanction on North Korea to seek to stop
roundabout exports there by requiring certain companies to file
6) US provides Japan with list of transactions to use in imposing
financial sanctions on North Korea
7) ASEAN ARF may discuss North Korea in own version of six-party

Iraq assistance:
8) Last June, when GSDF convoy attacked in Iraq, troops loaded
weapons for combat a first for Japanese forces overseas
9) Quick withdrawal of GSDF from Iraq and expansion of role of
remaining ASDF troops raise concerns about security
10) Government decides to expand ASDF assistance efforts in Iraq
11) In meeting, JDA chief Nukaga asks Kuwait's foreign minister for
assistance as ASDF expands transport role

Defense issues:
12) Minshuto (Democratic Party of Japan) is against a permanent PKO
13) USFJ to participate in Tokyo disaster drill, focusing on
transporting to safety stranded city dwellers
14) Relocation of US forces training accepted by ASDF base in

Political agenda:
15) Declassified State Department documents from 1950s, '60s detail
flow of USG assistance money to ruling and opposition camps in Japan

16) While party toils, Minshuto President Ozawa goes deep-sea
17) Yamasaki faction preparing foreign policy paper to counter Abe
candidacy with own ideas



Paloma admits responsibility for CO poisoning

Mainichi & Yomiuri:
Death toll from CO poisoning involving Paloma heater rises to 20

Nihon Keizai:
Leading commercial banks to raise short-term prime rates for first
time in 6 years

Government to apply financial sanctions on North Korea, based on
trade-related list presented by US

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Tokyo Shimbun:
GSDF troops in Iraq were moments from firing weapons when convoy
came under attack in June


(1) Murder of daughter in Akita: Thorough investigation was needed
(2) Sumo wrester Roho's violence deplorable

(1) Completion of SDF withdrawal: Experiences in Samawah must be
utilized in future
(2) Effect of new system to limit rehabilitation must be

(1) Major task left after successful end of GSDF mission
(2) Overly lax investigation missed mother's violent act

Nihon Keizai:
(1) Lack of responsibility for ensuring safety cause fatal CO
poisoning involving Paloma heater
(2) What was learned from the Iraq dispatch?

(1) Reflect lessons from SDF mission in Iraq in permanent law
(2) Lax investigation in Akita caused tragedy

Tokyo Shimbun:
(1) Were there mistakes in initial investigation of the murder case
in Akita?
(2) One year after enactment of Landscape Law: Lets search for local
assets first

3) Prime Minister's Official Residence (Kantei)

Prime Minister's schedule, July 17

NIHON KEIZAI (Page 2) (Full)
July 19, 2006

Left the airport in St. Petersburg by government plane.

(local time)

Prime Minister's schedule, July 18

Arrived at Haneda Airport

Reported return home at the Imperial Palace.

Arrived at the Prime Minister's Official Residence.

Met with Chief Cabinet Secretary Abe.


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Arrived at his residence.

(Japan time)

4) Koizumi urged Bush to engage in direct dialogue with North Korea
during Japan-US summit in June; Bush refused to fall into the
North's trap

ASAHI (Page 3) (Excerpts)
July 19, 2006

"Things will not move forward without direct dialogue." Prime
Minister Junichiro Koizumi urged US President George W. Bush last
month to promote a high-level direct dialogue with North Korea for
resolving the North's nuclear and missile issues, sources said
yesterday. The advice was a gamble for the dialogue-oriented
Koizumi, who made two trips to Pyongyang for a normalization of
diplomatic relations between Japan and North Korea. But President
Bush did not abandon his cautious stance. Days later, Pyongyang
launched missiles, pushing Japan and other countries toward a
pressure approach. Chances are diminishing that Koizumi's advice
will bear fruit.

Koizumi called for a US-North Korea direct dialogue at the June 29
Japan-US summit and in a subsequent telephone conversation with
Bush. Japanese government sources cited Koizumi as telling Bush,
while citing his two visits to Pyongyang:

"North Korea is hoping for a dialogue with the United States. In
dealing with a country like North Korea, things will not move
forward unless leaders of the two countries engage in a direct
dialogue. It is the United States rather than China who can settle
North Korean issues. In order also to resolve the abduction issue,
the nuclear and missile issues must be moved forward."

Thus Koizumi told President Bush that the United States must conduct
direct high-level talks with the North.

In response, Bush said: "You are the only leader who has objected
(to America's policy) to my face. I will consider your advice." But
in subsequent conversations with Koizumi, Bush maintained a cautious
stance, saying to the Japanese prime minister: "Engaging in a direct
dialogue means falling into North Korea's trap."

On July 5, the North test-fired seven missiles, including a
Taepodong-2. In his telephone conversation with Bush on July 6,
Koizumi reiterated the need for direct dialogue, but Bush did not
change his attitude, according to the sources. The view is prevalent
in Japan and abroad that despite Koizumi's advice, chances have
further diminished for a direct dialogue between the US and North

5) Government to mandate designated firms to report export details
under revised law to prevent roundabout exports to North Korea

NIHON KEIZAI (Page 1) (Excerpts)
July 19, 2006

The government has decided to strengthen trade-control regulations
by revising the Foreign Exchange and Foreign Trade Law, with a view
to additional sanctions against North Korea. If it decides to halt
trade with that nation by invoking additional economic sanctions,

TOKYO 00003996 004 OF 011

the government as a measure to prevent roundabout exports will
mandate domestic companies affiliated with North Korea, to report on
business details, including export destinations and items. The
government also plans to introduce tougher penalties for violators.

The government has already slapped sanctions on North Korea,
including banning its ferry Mangyongbong-92 from calling at Japanese
ports. In addition, it is considering imposing heavier economic
sanctions, such as halting cash remittances and trade activities,
depending on a future response by Pyongyang, which has refused to
comply with a resolution adopted by the United Nations Security

In the event that Japan decides to adopt the trade-suspension
measures, only direct trade with the North will come under the
application of the measure under the current law. The Ministry of
Economy, Trade and Industry intends to revise the law in order to
prevent Japanese firms affiliated with North Korea from exporting
goods to North Korea via a third country.

Once the government decides to apply additional sanctions on North
Korea, it will designate "firms linked to the country subject to the
sanctions," such as North Korea-affiliated companies, and will
require the firms to report on export items and destinations. Of
about 300 firms engaged in North Korea-bound exports, those whose
export values are large will likely come under the reporting
requirement. If a firm fails to acquit this obligation, the firm is
likely to be punished for unauthorized exports. The relevant
government ordinance will be revised when sanctions are invoked.

6) North Korea's missile launches: US presents a list of
transactions to Japan; Tokyo to implement financial sanctions

SANKEI (Top play) (Excerpts)
July 19, 2006

The government yesterday decided to implement sanctions against
North Korea in accordance with the Foreign Exchange and Foreign
Trade Control Law in order to halt transactions concerning missiles
and weapons of mass destruction, as well as freeze that country's
financial assets, following the United Nations Security Council's
adoption days ago of a resolution condemning North Korea's recent
missile launches. According to several government sources, the
United States has already presented Japan a list of transactions
concerning Pyongyang's missile development and other issues. Based
on the list, Japan will examine domestic financial institutions as
to whether they have accounts or financial assets that might have
been or may be used for illegal transactions.

Meeting the press yesterday, Chief Cabinet Secretary Shinzo Abe
said: "We can't see any sign that North Korea will make a radical
policy change, though it needs to do so. Following the UN
resolution, we'll impose sanctions on it in both the areas of goods
and money related to weapons of mass destruction. It's important for
us to work together with the US and other countries of the world."
He thus indicated that the imposition of additional sanctions would
be unavoidable.

7) "Six-party" foreign ministerial likely to occur on sidelines of

ASAHI (Page 3) (Excerpts)

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July 19, 2006

Nanae Kurashige and Tadahisa Takatsuki, Seoul

The Japanese government is making arrangements to bring about a
foreign ministerial of the member nations of the six-party talks on
the North Korean nuclear issue on the sidelines of the upcoming
ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) in Malaysia slated for July 28, sources
revealed. Taking advantage of the ARF in which the foreign ministers
of all the members of the six-party talks, including North Korea,
take part in, Japan wants to take the opportunity to restart the
currently stalled six-party talks. Foreign ministerial talks between
Japan and China and between Japan and South Korea are also expected
to take place.

However, according to a Japanese government source, China has asked
North Korea about its participation in the planned meeting, but no
response has come from North Korea yet. There is a growing call to
hold a meeting even among the five nations if North Korea is
unwilling to attend.

Foreign Minister Aso, Chinese Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing, North
Korean Foreign Minister Paek Nam Sun, and others will take part in
the ARF. This will be the first occasion for cabinet-level officials
to assemble since the United Nations Security Council's adoption of
a resolution against North Korea.

From Japan, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Asian and Oceanian
Affairs Bureau Director-General Kenichiro Sasake, the chief
representative to the six-party talks, will accompany the foreign
minister to ARF. Sasae is reportedly contacting Chinese Vice Foreign
Minister Wu Dawei, the chief representative to the six-party talks,
in trying to realize a foreign ministerial among the six nations.

8) GSDF troops loaded guns with live bullets in Iraq; Shootout
nearly occurred when convoy came under attack

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Top play) (Abridged)
July 19, 2006

In June last year, an explosion took place near a convoy of Ground
Self-Defense Force vehicles in Iraq. In that incident, a GSDF
armored vehicle was damaged. On hearing the explosion, GSDF members
loaded their guns with live cartridges in readiness to fight back,
sources revealed. They did not fire, but this episode shows a
dangerous fact about deployment to the front. The Self-Defense
Forces has a 14-year history of overseas missions, but this is the
first report of SDF members abroad loading their weapons with live

The incident occurred on June 23 last year. A remote-controlled bomb
set on the right side of a road exploded when two GSDF vehicles,
front- and rear-escorted by light-armored vehicles, were running in
the southern Iraqi city of Samawah. One of the two escorted vehicles
was damaged on its windshield and door.

According to several Defense Agency sources, GSDF members on board
the light-armored vehicles loaded the magazines of 5.5-mm
machineguns and were ready to fire. At the same time, they saw
someone running away through the desert. However, the convoy turned
back to its camp.

TOKYO 00003996 006 OF 011

About 20 GSDF members were on the move. There is no knowing how many
of them loaded their weapons with live bullets. However, a shootout
might have broken out if armed insurgents had attacked the convoy.
The actual scene was far tenser than reported.

9) Security situation causing concern about reconstruction
assistance in Iraq; GSDF troops quickly pull out of Samawah;
Apprehension regarding expansion of ASDF operations

ASAHI (Page 4) (Excerpts)
July 19, 2006

Kuwait, Masahiro Tsuruoka

Ground Self-Defense (GSDF) personnel deployed to Samawah to help
with reconstruction in Iraq have completed a pullout to Kuwait in 27
days, though initial expectations were that it would take a month to
a month and a half. The GSDF has decided to time the withdrawal to
coincide with that of British and Australian troops due to the
deteriorating security situation there. Air Self-Defense (ASDF)
troops will now expand their transport operations to cover Baghdad.
However, the capital is in a state close to civil war. Though the
government insists that the airport is a non-combat area, some
sources connected with the Defense Agency (JDA) have pointed out
that the government claim is a fallacy.

British and Australian troops on July 13 transferred security
authority over Muthana Province, where Samawah is located, to the
Iraqi government. However, the security situation there has worsened
since late June, when the GSDF started pulling out.

A number of explosions occurred near the GSDF, British, and
Australian camps this month. In fact, there was an explosion on the
15th, the day before the final withdrawal of the GSDF troops.

British and Australian troops, which guarded the GSDF troops, aim to
pull out of Samawah before the end of the month. A senior GSDF
officer noted, "The British troops intend to pull out of Samawah
earlier than originally planned due to the series of explosions near
their camp." The British troops helped GSDF personnel pull out of
Samawah quicker than their original plan by transporting them to
Talill Airport by helicopter.

The GSDF officer explained, "We rushed to pull out of Samawah in
order not to disturb the withdrawals of British and Australian
troops following the GSDF troops." The last GSDF troops evacuated
the camp to the airport overland at night to avoid possible

JDA Director-General Nukaga, who visited Kuwait to meet the GSDF
personnel, on the 17th told reporters that ASDF operations will be
expanded to cover Baghdad and Arbill as early as the end of this

10) ASDF mission to expand starting in late July to include
airlifting UN personnel and supplies between Baghdad and Arbil

YOMIURI (Page 2) (Full)
July 19, 2006

The government decided yesterday to allow the Kuwait-based Air
Self-Defense Force's airlift mission to include the transport of

TOKYO 00003996 007 OF 011

United Nations personnel and supplies between Baghdad and Arbil in
Iraq starting in late July in accordance to the Iraq Humanitarian
Reconstruction Support Special Measures Law. The decision follows
the Ground Self-Defense Force's complete withdrawal from the
southern Iraqi city of Samawah.

In May, UN Secretary General Kofi Annan asked Prime Minister
Junichiro Koizumi for the ASDF's cooperation on airlifting UN
personnel and supplies. When Koizumi formally decided to withdraw
the ground troops from Iraq, he also came up a policy course to
expand the ASDF mission as part of Japan's continued assistance to
Iraq. But the government has postponed the step until all ground
troops pulled out of Iraq, which required ASDF transport planes.

The ASDF's C-130 transport planes and 200 personnel based at Ali Al
Salem Air Base in Kuwait have airlifted GSDF and multinational force
personnel and supplies to Tallil and Basra near Samawah. The
government has concluded the ASDF would be able to secure safety
between Baghdad and Arbil as well. The UN, which has been making
preparations for the recovery of functions of its local office to
coincide with the establishment of the new the new Iraqi government,
has asked for the provision of transport planes.

11) JDA Director-General Nukaga asks for assistance for ASDF
operations during meeting with Kuwaiti foreign minister

SANKEI (Page 2) (Full)
July 19, 2006

Kuwait City, Hiroshi Funatsu

Defense Agency Director General Fukushiro Nukaga on the morning of
July 18 (afternoon of the same day, Japan time) met with Foreign
Minister Mohammad at the National Assembly in Kuwait City. Nukaga
expressed gratitude to the Kuwaiti government for its cooperation
for Ground Self-Defense troops, which have ended their humanitarian
and reconstruction assistance in Iraq. He then asked for assistance
for Air Self-Defense (ASDF) troops, which will continue transport
operations out of Ali Al Salem Air Base in Kuwait.

Nukaga thanked Mohammad: "The GSDF's humanitarian and reconstruction
assistance operations were successful thanks to Kuwait's
cooperation." He also asked for its continued cooperation to the
ASDF. Mohammad replied, "We fully trust the role Japan is fulfilling
for Gulf countries."

Nukaga on the afternoon of the same day (evening of the same day,
Japan time) visited a US military base outside Kuwait City, where
GSDF personnel were undergoing health examinations. He hailed their
service there.

He told reporters: "Their experience here will be definitely used in
the future. They now must be confident that their troops can work
not only to defend Japan but also to build international peace."

12) DPJ's Ozawa opposed to permanent law for SDF dispatch

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Page 3) (Full)
July 19, 2006

Regarding the Ground Self-Defense Force's pullout from Iraq,
Democratic Party of Japan (Minshuto) President Ichiro Ozawa, meeting

TOKYO 00003996 008 OF 011

the press yesterday, opposed the idea from within the government and
the ruling Liberal Democratic Party of establishing a permanent law
that would allow Japan to send Self-Defense Forces personnel
overseas at any time.

"The government is going to create a procedural law (for Japan to
send SDF troops overseas) without showing its constitutional
interpretation of Japan's military operations; their thinking is
upside down," Ozawa said. "They're confusing the order of things,
and it's strange for a law-governed nation to do so," he added.

Meanwhile, the government is now beginning to prepare additional
economic sanction measures against North Korea. In this regard,
Ozawa noted that Japan must consider Japan's pluses and minuses on
the economic and political sides before taking sanction measures,
and he also noted that Japan tends to think of doing something based
on a mood. In addition, Ozawa raised a question about the
effectiveness of additional economic sanctions. He insisted:
"There's a limit to what Japan can do alone. The whole world will
have to work together, or we can't expect Japan's sanction measures
to be effective."

13) USFJ to participate in Tokyo Metropolitan Government's disaster
drill; Transportation of disaster survivors unable to return home by
USFJ now considered

ASAHI (Page 2) (Excerpts)
July 19, 2006

US Forces Japan (USFJ) has reached a basic agreement on its
participation in the Tokyo Metropolitan Government's comprehensive
disaster drill that is conducted in September every year. The USFJ
and the metropolitan government are in final discussions on
specifics of the drill, such as the transportation of disaster
survivors unable to return home and goods via USFJ ships and
helicopters. The USFJ has made Yokota Air Base available to the
metropolitan government during this drill since 2001, but according
to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) and other government
offices, a joint drill with the USFJ with the participation of its
troops and vessels has never taken place so far in Japan.

The drill will be conducted on the assumption of the occurrence of
an earthquake directly under Tokyo. Final coordination on the drill
is going on between the metropolitan government and the USFJ on
plans for US troops and its vessels to transport disaster survivors
unable to return home due to the disruption of the transport systems
to Yokosuka City, Kanagawa Prefecture, by the US Navy's ships or
transport relief goods from the Yokota Base by the US Air Force's
helicopters. How many US troops, ships, and helicopters will take
part in the drill is likely to depend on the situation that day.

At the time of the Chuetsu earthquake in Niigata Prefecture in 2004,
US aircraft transported relief goods from Yokota Air Base. A
metropolitan government official in charge of the drill explained:
"The purpose of the upcoming drill is to prepare a system for us to
smoothly accept support from the US forces." Reportedly, the USFJ
has indicated that it has participated in relief activities when a
disaster occurs and that its participation in the upcoming drill is
of a similar nature.

14) Local city to accept US military aircraft training to Hyakuri

TOKYO 00003996 009 OF 011

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Page 3) (Full)
July 19, 2006

In the process of realigning the US military presence in Japan, the
government is planning to transfer US military fighter jets'
training to the Air Self-Defense Force's Hyakuri base in the city of
Omitama, Ibaraki Prefecture. On this issue, Omitama City decided
yesterday to accept the training to the base on the condition that
agreements on noise abatement, safety assurances, and other measures
are concluded. The city's mayor, Joichi Shimada, will formally
inform the government of the decision tomorrow. The Ibaraki
prefectural government is also expected to approve the city's
decision. Omitama has so far been reluctant to accept the planned
transfer of US military aircraft training to the base because of
opposition from the city's municipal assembly and local residents.
Late last month, however, local communities accepted it
conditionally. In the meantime, the city's municipal assembly also
concurred. The city's municipal government therefore changed its
course of action.

The proposed agreement has yet to be detailed. However, the city
will ask the government to take measures, such as abating noise,
ensuring safety, cooperating on local development, and limiting the
number of training flights. Other localities hosting Chitose base in
Hokkaido and Komatsu base in Ishikawa Prefecture have already
accepted US military aircraft training relocation to these bases.
Omitama City also would like to negotiate with the government for
advantageous conditions.

In May, the Japanese and US governments agreed on the planned
realignment of US forces in Japan. Along with this realignment, the
US Air Force is to relocate F-15 fighter jets' training in part from
three US military bases, including Kadena Air Base in Okinawa
Prefecture, to six ASDF bases, including Hyakuri.

US fighters are expected to carry out touch-and-go training at the
Hyakuri base for up to four weeks and about 1,000 times a year.

15) US State Department to release documents showing US government's
financial assistance to LDP, moderate opposition party members in
1950s, 1960s

ASAHI (Page 3) (Full)
July 19, 2006

Sueya Kaihara, Washington

By publishing on July 18 a collection of diplomatic documents on
Japan prepared under the Johnson administration, the US State
Department will make public documents underpinning that the US
government's "secret support operation" (financial aid) to some LDP
executives and moderate opposition party members existed from the
late 1950s through 1964. Although the New York Times reported in
1994 on financial assistance from the CIA to the LDP, public
documents on such assistance have never been released. It has
already come to light that the US government extended financial
assistance to some opposition party members. The US government has
decided to shed new light on America's postwar history.

The State Department is publishing the second part of volume 29 of
the Foreign Relations of the United States (FRUS) as those documents

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become declassified after a period of 30 years.

According to a State Department press conference, the operation was
of a minor scale and was designed to provide assistance to major
pro-US lawmakers and split moderates from left-wing opposition
parties. The Johnson administration reportedly halted the operation
in 1964, concluding that the program was inappropriate and that the
potential risks associated with the exposure were not worth it. But
the secret social and propaganda program to eliminate communist
influence rather than to financial assistance to lawmakers was in
place until 1968. Edward Kiefer, editor-in-chief of the FRUS, has
said to the Asahi Shimbun: "Although the operation was small in
scale, it included financial assistance."

16) Is deep-sea fishing "party work" for Minshuto President Ozawa?

The Minshuto (Democratic Party of Japan) has upgraded a fishing trip
planned for President Ichiro Ozawa and other party leaders at the
island of Miyake (Miyake Village, Tokyo-to) to party work that would
include an inspection of the island's restoration. Minshuto Acting
President Naoto Kan and Secretary General Yukio Hatoyama will
accompany Ozawa on the two-night, three-day trip that starts July
31. The invitation to Kan and Hatoyama to go fishing came from the
Ozawa side. At first, it was supposed to be "private," according to
an Ozawa aide, but later a schedule was added at the request of
Miyake Village for the trio to inspect the island where eruptions of
volcanic gases still continue.

Although party officials explained, "The main purpose of the trip is
to inspect the island, as well as to build up the island's image as
a tourist center by fishing there," some party members are
complaining, such a mid-level lawmaker who said, "I just don't want
it to be thought they just went there to have fun."

17) Yamasaki faction aims to unite anti-Abe forces; Policy plays up
Asia diplomacy

ASAHI (Page 4) (Full)
July 19, 2006

The Yamasaki faction of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) yesterday
released a policy vision in the run-up to the September LDP
presidential election. The package proposed constructing a national
secular memorial for the war dead and discussing the nature of
Yasukuni Shrine, taking into consideration an argument heard in the
LDP calling for separate enshrinement of Class-A war criminals. The
vision strongly reflects the aim of Yamasaki, who wants to unite
anti-Abe forces using Asia diplomacy as a focal point.

Touching on Japan-China relations in a press conference held to
release the vision and a speech delivered after that, Yamasaki
stressed the need to improve bilateral relations. He noted: "It is
important that we be able to talk with that country. In order to
find a breakthrough in the current situation, I want the
post-Koizumi administration to carry out flexible diplomacy." He
then noted: "I do not know which potential candidates will adopt my
policy vision. If nobody takes it up, I will do it myself." He thus
indicated the possibility of his running in the LDP presidential

The policy vision titled "A Japan that contributes to the world with
vitality and harmony" consists of four pillars: (1) diplomacy based

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on justice and harmony; (2) a dynamic economy; (3) a safe society
that guarantees peace of mind; and (4) education that opens up the

As a means to indicate his resolve to build a nation that positively
contributes to peace, the package noted that consideration should be
given to the possibility of constructing a facility where people can
offer their sincere condolences to the war dead and renew their
pledge to protect peace, as well as looking into the nature of
Yasukuni Shrine. It also calls for stopping North Korea's nuclear
development through the six-party talks and establishing a
multilateral security initiative in Asia, centered on Japan, the US,
South Korea, China, and Russia. For domestic politics, the package
proposed raising the consumption tax by 2009 in order to cope with
the declining birthrate and establishing a comprehensive social
security insurance scheme that unifies pension, medical care,
nursing care, benefits for handicapped persons, employment, and
child care systems.


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