Cablegate: Daily Summary of Japanese Press 07/25/06

DE RUEHKO #4146/01 2062252
P 252252Z JUL 06





E.O. 12958: N/A

(1) Poll on Koizumi cabinet, political parties, post-Koizumi race,
Yasukuni Shrine issue, North Korea's missile launches

(2) Probing into developments leading up to Fukuda's decision not
to run in LDP presidential race

(3) Missile defense system and its efficacy: Question raised about
intercept capability

(4) Rush of overseas trips by cabinet ministers, but with few plans
involving Africa, developing countries, showing lack of strategic

(5) Town meeting shows signs of system fatigue in its fifth year to
promote reform

(6) Poll finds 64 PERCENT of men in twenties living with parents
in 2004

(7) Successors to secretaries to prime minister

(1) Poll on Koizumi cabinet, political parties, post-Koizumi race,
Yasukuni Shrine issue, North Korea's missile launches

ASAHI (Page 4) (Full)
July 25, 2006

Questions & Answers
(Figures shown in percentage, rounded off. Bracketed figures denote
proportions to all respondents. Parentheses denote the results of
the last survey conducted June 24-25 unless otherwise specified.)

Q: Do you support the Koizumi cabinet?

Yes 43(45)
No 40(41)

Q: Which political party do you support now?

Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) 36(35)
Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ or Minshuto) 16(20)
New Komeito (NK) 3(3)
Japanese Communist Party (JCP) 2(2)
Social Democratic Party (SDP or Shaminto) 1(1)
People's New Party (PNP or Kokumin Shinto) 0(0)
New Party Nippon (NPN or Shinto Nippon) 0(0)
Liberal League (LL or Jiyu Rengo) 0(0)
Other political parties 0(0)
None 35(33)
No answer (N/A) + don't know (D/K) 7(6)

Q: The LDP will elect its new president in September. Are you
interested in this election?

Yes 54(59)
No 43(39)

Q: Who do you think is appropriate to become the next prime
minister? Pick only one from among Diet members excluding Koizumi.

Shinzo Abe 36

TOKYO 00004146 002 OF 010

Yasuo Fukuda 7
Ichiro Ozawa 5
Taro Aso 3
Sadakazu Tanigaki 1
Other politicians 2

Q: What would you like the next prime minister to prioritize in
particular? (One choice only. Parentheses denote the results of a
survey conducted May 20-21.)

Improve Japan's foreign relations 14(14)
Economic stimulus measures 18(21)
Fiscal reconstruction 16(14)
Low birthrate countermeasures 24(25)
Correct economic disparities 23(21)

Q: What type of person do you think is appropriate to become the
next prime minister? (One choice only)

A tough person 28
A cooperative person 67

Q: The focus is now on whether Prime Minister Koizumi will visit
Yasukuni Shrine during his term, which ends in September. Would you
like him to do so?

Yes 29
No 57

Q: (Only for those who answered "yes") Would you like him to visit
Yasukuni Shrine on Aug. 15, the anniversary of the end of World War
II, or would you like him to do so on another day?

Aug. 15 39(11)
Another day 45(13)

Q: Would you like the next prime minister to visit Yasukuni Shrine?
(Parentheses denote the results of a survey conducted Jan. 28-29.)

Yes 20(28)
No 60(46)

Q: The late Emperor Showa (Hirohito) is said to have made a
statement voicing his displeasure with the enshrinement of Class-A
war criminals at Yasukuni Shrine. The then imperial household grand
steward, in his recently discovered notebook, quoted the late
emperor as saying: "That's why I've never been to Yasukuni Shrine
since then. That's my heart." How much do you weigh this statement
when thinking about the propriety of a prime ministerial visit to
the shrine? (One choice only)

Very much 24
Somewhat 39
Not very much 21
Not at all 12

Q: In early July, North Korea launched seven missiles, including
Rodong and Taepodong-2 missiles, and the launched missiles landed in
the Sea of Japan. Do you feel a threat from North Korea with its
missile launches this time? (One choice only)

Very much 38

TOKYO 00004146 003 OF 010

Somewhat 39
Not very much 16
Not at all 6

Q: The United Nations Security Council unanimously adopted a
resolution condemning North Korea for its missile launches and
calling on North Korea to stop its missile development. Do you
appreciate this?

Yes 85
No 8

Q: The government called on the UNSC to adopt a resolution imposing
sanctions on North Korea. However, China and Russia opposed
sanctions on North Korea. Then, Japan and these two countries made
concessions and concurred on a soft-toned resolution that condemns
North Korea. Do you appreciate this Japanese diplomacy?

Yes 55
No 32

Polling methodology: The survey was conducted July 22-23 across the
nation over the telephone on a computer-aided random digit dialing
(RDD) basis. Respondents were chosen from among the nation's voting
population on a three-stage random-sampling basis. Valid answers
were obtained from 1,898 persons (57 PERCENT ).

(2) Probing into developments leading up to Fukuda's decision not
to run in LDP presidential race

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Page 2) (Abridged)
July 25, 2006

Former Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasuo Fukuda, 70, has announced that
he will not run for the Liberal Democratic Party presidency. What
prompted him to withdraw from the race?

"I hear that North Korea will launch missiles, so July is going to
be bad," Fukuda said to LDP Lower House member Taku Yamamoto over
the dinner table on the night of July 3. Yamamoto planned to back
Fukuda in the upcoming presidential election. The two belong to the
Mori faction and put high priority on China. Yamamoto wanted to hear
firm resolve from Fukuda that night.

But Fukuda kept talking about North Korean missiles. It was two days
before Pyongyang test-fired missiles into the Sea of Japan.

Fukuda must have obtained reliable information from the US
government, Yamamoto thought. The topic gradually turned to

"When I was serving as chief cabinet secretary, views different from
mine emerged from persons close to me, and I hated that."

During his tenure as chief cabinet secretary under Prime Minister
Koizumi, Fukuda often locked horns with then Foreign Minister Makiko
Tanaka. Discord with then Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Shinto Abe,
51, was also evident over the abduction issue. Although Fukuda did
not name names, he clearly had these two in mind. Fukuda went on to
say: "So, I will keep my mouth shut, leaving government affairs to
Mr. Abe."

Abe's stance toward North Korea was sterner than Fukuda's. Fukuda

TOKYO 00004146 004 OF 010

feared that objecting to Abe's approach would cause him to overreact
and make an erroneous decision as a result.

Objecting to Abe might also be taken as an attempt at revenge to
turn the presidential race in his favor, and Fukuda could not stand
such development.

Remaining mum on diplomatic policy, Fukuda's forte, meant abandoning
policy debate with Abe and effectively giving up his candidacy.

Fukuda explained that he had no intention to run in the race from
the beginning. But that cannot be taken at face value.

From early spring through June, Fukuda visited a number of
countries, met key foreign government officials, and had drinks with
fellow lawmakers in the vicinity of Nagatacho. All those events
pointed to his eagerness to throw his hat in the ring.

Although he did not echo Abe's views on North Korea and the Yasukuni
issue, Fukuda was ready to conduct a fair policy debate with Abe.

His rising support ratings in various opinion polls from April
through May also added fuel to his quiet fighting spirit.

But Pyongyang's missile launches instantly resulted in an atmosphere
that would not allow calm debate on North Korea policy.

On July 20, a memorandum showing Emperor Showa's (Hirohito)
displeasure with the enshrinement of Class-A war criminals at
Yasukuni Shrine came to light. This made it even more difficult to
conduct a rational discussion on Yasukuni.

In Fukuda's view, there was a clear distinction between "not
running" and "saying he won't run." He thought there was no need for
him to make a statement given that he did not say he would run in
the first place.

But people around him took his silence as a signal of his eagerness
for the party presidency. A frustrated Fukuda avoided the media and
cancelled meetings.

On July 20, former Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori, head of the Mori
faction, advised Fukuda on the phone: "As a responsible lawmaker,
you should send some sort of message at some point." Over 20 days
had passed since Mori informally learned of Fukuda's intention not
to run.

On July 21, Fukuda told Mori at his office that he would send out a

Shortly After 9 p.m. on July 21, a smiling Fukuda said before the
television cameras at his residence that he would not run in the
race because of his advanced age.

(3) Missile defense system and its efficacy: Question raised about
intercept capability

MAINICHI (Page 5) (Full)
July 21, 2006

The United States announced a plan yesterday to deploy the Patriot
Advanced Capability 3 (PAC-3), an intercept missile of the
ground-based type, to the US Kadena Air Base in Okinawa Prefecture.

TOKYO 00004146 005 OF 010

A missile defense (MD) system shielding Japan against ballistic
missiles is now about to enter the stage of acquiring the capability
of intercepting missiles. With North Korea's recent missile
launches, MD is now becoming an object of public attention. The
question, however, is if the MD system will really work well. The
Mainichi Shimbun clears up the points at issue.

Q: The Self-Defense Forces (SDF) is now preparing to deploy the MD
shield system. How will the system work?

A: A ballistic missile, once launched, passes through three stages.
The first stage is called boost and post-boost phase, which is right
after the missile is lifted off with boosters. The second stage is
called midcourse phase. When reaching this stage, the missile's fuel
burns out. And then, its warhead is separated off and passes into
outer space in a parabolic curve. The third stage is the terminal
phase. After reaching this stage, the missile's separated warhead
reenters the atmosphere to head for its target. The MD system
planned for the SDF is two-staged with the sea-based and
ground-based deployments of intercept missiles. At the first stage,
an Aegis-equipped destroyer of the Maritime Self-Defense Force
(MSDF), which is on stage at sea, fires its sea-based Standard
Missile 3 (SM-3) missiles to intercept a ballistic missile in its
midcourse phase. Should the SM-3 miss that missile, the ground-based
PAC-3 system destroys it in its terminal phase.

Q: Is it already possible to intercept a missile?

A: The SDF plans to deploy ground-based PAC-3 missiles at the end of
the current fiscal year and plans to deploy sea-based SM-3 missiles
by the end of next fiscal year. In other words, the SDF is still
totally incapable of intercepting ballistic missiles. For now, the
SDF can only engage in warning and surveillance activities to pick
up and track ballistic missiles with Aegis ships and ground-based

Q: That means US Forces Japan (USFJ) will be the first to acquire
the capability of intercepting ballistic missiles, doesn't it?

A: That's right. The PAC-3 at the Kadena Air Base will be
operational in December of this year. The US Navy will also deploy
the USS Shiloh to Yokosuka in August. The Shiloh is an
Aegis-equipped cruiser loaded with the SM-3.

Q: Is it possible for the SDF's PAC-3 system to defend all over

A: The Air Self-Defense Force (ASDF) plan to deploy the PAC-3 to its
air defense missile groups at Iruma base in Saitama Prefecture,
Hamamatsu base in Shizuoka Prefecture, Gifu base in Gifu Prefecture,
and Kasuga base in Fukuoka Prefecture. But the PAC-3's range is
about 20 kilometers. Accordingly, the PAC-3 is only to intercept
missiles targeted to hit urban areas in the Kanto, Chubu, and Kansai
districts and in the northern part of Kyushu. The PAC-3 at the US
Kadena Air Base is to cover Okinawa only.

Q: Defense Agency Director General Fukushiro Nukaga stated before
the Diet that the government would consider deploying the MD system
earlier than scheduled.

A: The Defense Agency is thinking to move up the MD deployment. But
it seems difficult to do so. The Defense Agency has had plans to
expedite the MD deployment. However, manufacturers cannot increase

TOKYO 00004146 006 OF 010

their productivity at once. If the government substantially
increases defense spending, things would be different then. However,
the government is now in dire fiscal straits and not in a mood to
say it will make an exception for MD only.

Q: Will the SDF and USFJ operate MD together?

A: In any case, the SDF must work together with USFJ. Only the US
military has early warning satellites with infrared sensing to
detect a source of heat. So it's only the US military that can sense
missiles just at the moment they're launched. The SDF is in a
position to ask for intelligence.

Q: Some people wonder if it's possible to intercept ballistic
missiles with MD.

A: US forces say they have made it in their intercept tests.
However, their MD tests were conducted under quite different
conditions unlike actual deployment. We don't know how much they can
be sure to shoot down ballistic missiles. There's no clear-cut
numerical data to show this. One says it's generally possible to
shoot down, and another says the chance is about several percent.
Since there's no other choice, MD deployment is needed. This is the
government's position.

Q: MD needs a large-scale system. Then, how much will it cost?

A: Japan started to introduce the MD system in fiscal 2004. The
government has budgeted about 350 billion yen for three years.
According to the current plan, Japan will generally complete its MD
introduction in fiscal 2011. Its total cost is estimated at
approximately one trillion yen. In the future, however, the cost of
MD introduction is highly likely to increase with the introduction
of new systems. In addition, Japan and the United States have been
working together to develop a new SM-3 missile of the
next-generation type. Japan has promised to outlay 1.0-1.2 billion
dollars (approx. 117-140.4 billion yen) for nine years.

(4) Rush of overseas trips by cabinet ministers, but with few plans
involving Africa, developing countries, showing lack of strategic

SANKEI (Page 6) (Excerpts)
July 25, 2006

The rush of overseas trips by cabinet ministers is going on under
instructions by the Prime Minister's Office (Kantei) as part of the
nation's diplomatic strategy. But some of these travels are not
based on any strategic policy. Ahead of Prime Minister Koizumi's
planned departure from office in September, some of these trips have
been hurriedly arranged, according to a Liberal Democratic Party
(LDP) official.

In an informal ministerial meeting in May, Chief Cabinet Secretary
Shinzo Abe asked cabinet ministers to visit or to instruct senior
vice ministers or their aides to visit on a priority basis countries
or regions where (1) few influential government officials, including
cabinet ministers, have visited, but with which (2) there are key
policy challenges for Japan.

According to Abe, cabinet ministers' overseas travels are part of
the nation's strategy of "developing Japan's foreign policy on a
global scale in a strategic and planned manner." But behind the

TOKYO 00004146 007 OF 010

Kantei's call is Japan's failure to obtain support from African and
other countries for its plan to reform the United Nations Security
Council (UNSC). Japan submitted it last year in a bid to acquire a
permanent seat on the UNSC, but the plan was killed.

In response to the Kantei's instructions, overseas trips by cabinet
ministers started after the adjournment of the regular Diet session.
As of July 24, a total of 22 cabinet ministers have made overseas
trips. Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi is also scheduled to visit
Mongolia in early August and Central Asian countries, including
Kazakhstan, in late August.

Despite the Kantei's expectations, though, there are few travel
plans involving African or developing countries.

According to informed sources, one cabinet minister was asked to
travel to a certain developing county in the southern hemisphere but
declined, citing the long travel time. It was apparent that this
cabinet minister planned to go overseas for personal purposes, so
administrative officials reportedly told the minister to give
priority to domestic duties.

Overseas trips by cabinet ministers cost a great deal. A visit to
China by Land, Infrastructure, and Transport Minister Kazuo Kitagawa
(July 11-15) cost 8.3 million yen. In the case of a visit to Brazil
by Internal Affairs and Communications Minister Heizo Takenaka (June
28-July 2), 11 million yen was spent. However, most government
agencies have refused to disclose the details of their ministers'
overseas trips, including the cost and the number of attendants.

(5) Town meeting shows signs of system fatigue in its fifth year to
promote reform

YOMIURI (Page 2) (Abridged)
July 25, 2006

A meeting was held in Tokyo yesterday to commemorate the 5th
anniversary of the town meeting, a venue for direct dialogue between
Koizumi cabinet ministers and private citizens. The participants
included Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi and Chief Cabinet
Secretary Shinzo Abe. Although the meetings have contributed to

promoting Prime Minister Koizumi's structural reform drive, they are
often criticized as having fallen into a rut these days. Finding new
attractive themes and hosting meetings in collaboration with private
groups may help them recover public interest.

Looking back on past town meetings, Prime Minister Koizumi said
yesterday: "The events have been helpful to draw public attention to
politics." Abe also noted: "Town meetings will remain vital as long
as the Liberal Democratic Party stays in power."

The town meeting system was launched in June 2001 at the proposal by
then Economy, Trade, and Industry Minister Heizo Takenaka (currently
internal affairs and communications minister). Yesterday's meeting
marked the 167th session. A total of 64,864 people have attended the
meetings in total. The government used the town meeting to get the
public on its side to advance highly controversial reforms, such as
postal privatization and reviewing the road revenues.

Similar programs involving the general public have taken root in
political circles and at the local level.

But in its fifth year, the town meeting has begun showing clear

TOKYO 00004146 008 OF 010

signs of system fatigue. In fiscal 2001, 52 sessions took place,
drawing a total of 18,734 people. But the attendance dropped
gradually, and in fiscal 2005, only 7,896 people attended the 23
sessions. Themes are no longer confined to structural reform. In
fact, the topic for the session held in Sendai on May 27 was
measures against earthquakes.

Such efforts as setting themes flexibly, hosting events jointly with
private organizations, and having celebrity guests are planned for
the town meeting in the month ahead.

(6) Poll finds 64 PERCENT of men in twenties living with parents
in 2004

ASAHI (Page 3) (Full)
July 22, 2006

The average number of family members per household dropped to a
record low of 2.8, according to the 2004 household trend survey
conducted by the National Institute of Population and Social
Security Research. The survey also found that the number of
so-called parasite singles who continue living with their parents in
order to save on rent and avoid doing housework has been on the

The survey is carried out every five years. In the 2004 survey,
10,711 households replied.

The size of the household has shrunk. The average number of family
members was 3.1 in 1994 and 2.9 in 1999. Of all households in the
nation, the ratio of families of two increased 3.1 percentage points
from the 28.7 percent marked in a previous survey, while the ratio
of families of four decreased 2.0 points to 18.1 percent. Single
households accounted for 20.0 percent, almost the same level as that
in the previous survey.

The ratio of adults living with their parents, though, has been on
the rise. Among men aged 25-29, 64.0 percent live with their
parents, up 5.7 points over the previous survey. The figure for
women this age was 56.1 percent, up 4.8 percent points. The survey
results also showed that even among people aged 30-34, 45.4 percent
of men and 33.1 percent of women live with their parents. Many of
them seem to be so-called parasite singles. The research institute
makes this analysis: "In addition to the recent tendency to marry
later or remain unmarried, there may be many young people who have
no choice but to live with their parents for economic reasons even
if they want to become independent."

Meanwhile, the ratio of elderly parents living with children dropped
below 50 percent for the first time. The ratio of people aged at 65
or older living with children was 58.3 percent in 1994 and 52.1
percent in 1999, but it was 48.1 PERCENT in the latest survey.

(7) Successors to secretaries to prime minister

Bungei-Shunju August, 2006

Among secretaries to Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi, Political
Affairs Secretary Iwao Iijima, Secretary Yasutake Tango (entered the
Finance Ministry in 1974), Secretary Koro Bessho (entered the
Foreign Ministry in 1975), and Secretary Hideichi Okada (entered the
former Ministry of International Trade and Industry = MITI in 1976)
have continued to support him ever since he came into office. Now

TOKYO 00004146 009 OF 010

that Koizumi is to step down in September, the bureaucracy at
Kasumigaseki is riveted to the future posts of the four and who will
replace them. That is because government agencies second competent
officials who are future candidates for vice ministers as
secretaries to the prime minister.


Tango is expected to become a future vice minister. Though the
personnel changes of the Finance Ministry this summer do not
coincide with the end of Koizumi's tenure, it is believed that Tango
is certain to eventually become a Budget Bureau director general and
then an administrative vice finance minister. Koichi Hosokawa
(entered the Finance Ministry in 1970), who became vice minister
after serving as a secretary to former Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi,
indirectly asked Koizumi about his next post. Koizumi jokingly said,
"I will return him to your agency as senior vice minister." In the
Finance Ministry there is Kazuyuki Sugimoto, deputy vice minister
for policy planning and coordination of the Minister's Secretariat,
who entered the ministry in the same year as Tango. As such, there
is a rumor among ministry officials that both of them might be
appointed vice ministers.

There is a strong possibility of Tango's successor being picked from
among those who entered the Finance Ministry in 1979. In that case,
one of the following two will be selected.

One is Shunsuke Kagawa, director general of the Budget Bureau
Coordination Division, and the other is Yasushi Kinoshita, director
general of the Policy Planning and Research Division of the
Minister's Secretariat. Among those who entered MOF, they are elite
career-track officials and lead in the race to be promoted to vice
minister. Kinoshita served as a secretary to Chief Cabinet Secretary
Mikio Aoki during the Obuchi administration. Kagawa served as a
secretary to Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Ichiro Ozawa during the

Takeshita administration. Senior MOF officials, including Hosokawa,
have Kagawa in mind. However, since it is said that Kagawa still has
connections with Ozawa, now head of the Democratic Party of Japan,
Kinoshita might be picked, if Shinzo Abe becomes the next prime

The Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry (METI) has yet to
choose from two potential candidates for the next vice minister:
Norihiko Ishiguro (entered METI in 1980), director general of the
Policy Planning and Coordination Division of the Ministry's
Secretariat, and Tsuneyoshi Tatsuoka, director general of the

General Policy Division of the Agency for Natural Resources and
Energy Director General's Secretariat. Tatsuoka served as a
secretary to MITI Minister Shunpei Tsukahara during the Ryutaro

Hashimoto administration. Ishiguro, who is a student of Vice
Minister Hideji Sugiyama (entered METI in 1971), served as director
of the Industrial Revitalization Division when Sugiyama was the
bureau director general of the Economic and Industrial Policy

Bessho of MOFA has damaged his reputation since he became a
secretary to the prime minister. He has gone ahead of others who

entered MOFA in the same year, serving as director of the Northeast
Asian Affairs Division and director of the Coordination Division
Policy of the Foreign Policy Bureau. However, he has been unable to
be involved in the key policy-making process, such as the dispatch
of Self-Defense Forces personnel to Iraq and USFJ realignment.
Iijima has cut himself out of decisions. Chikao Kawai (also entered
MOFA in 1975) is now director general of the North American Affairs
Bureau. He is bound to become vice minister. Bessho will return to

TOKYO 00004146 010 OF 010

the International Cooperation Bureau, which is to be reorganized
from the Economic Cooperation Bureau, as director general. His
five-year-and-a-half absence from MOFA is great. Hidekazu Ishikawa
(entered MOFA in 1975), director of the Policy Coordination Division
of the Foreign Policy Bureau, is almost certain to be assigned as a
secretary to the next prime minister.


Hiroto Yamazaki (entered the National Policy Agency = NPA in 1976)
from the NPA (under Director General Iwao Uruma, who entered the NPA
in 1969) served as a secretary to the prime minister for a short
period of time. He will return to the NPA as a councilor of the
Director General's Secretariat. Shigeru Kitamura (entered the NPA in
1980), director of the Foreign Affairs Division of the Security
Bureau Foreign Affairs Intelligence Department and a protg of
Hideshi Mitani (entered the NPA in 1974), the former director
general of the Foreign Affairs Intelligence Department who was
recently picked as a director of the Cabinet Intelligence, is viewed
as the most likely candidate to replace Yamazaki. Some in the NPA,
however, prefer Kiyotaka Takahashi (also entered in the NPA in
1980), director of the Security Guard Division.

Iijima is openly proclaiming that if Chief Cabinet Secretary Abe
becomes prime minister, he might remain in his present post.
However, rumor has it that Yoshiyuki Inoue, who has been a secretary
to Abe since he was deputy chief cabinet secretary, would serve as
his political affairs secretary. Some are wondering about Iijima's
motives in making such a statement.


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