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Cablegate: Daily Summary of Japanese Press 08/08/06

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RHMFIUU/COMUSJAPAN YOKOTA AB JA//J5/JO21//
RUYNAAC/COMNAVFORJAPAN YOKOSUKA JA
RUAYJAA/COMPATWING ONE KAMI SEYA JA
RUEHNH/AMCONSUL NAHA 0142
RUEHFK/AMCONSUL FUKUOKA 7565
RUEHOK/AMCONSUL OSAKA KOBE 0879
RUEHNAG/AMCONSUL NAGOYA 7400
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RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 3654
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL 9791
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 1498

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 07 TOKYO 004452

SIPDIS

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 08/08/06


INDEX:

(1) Poll on Koizumi cabinet, political parties, LDP race

(2) Editorial: China between the Defense White Paper's lines

(3) Yasukuni part 2: Argument renouncing separate enshrinement of
Class-A war criminals shaken; Key Shinto religious teacher refuses
to express view

(4) Debate on Yasukuni Shrine taking new turn, with focus shifted
from propriety of prime minister's visits to shrine status

ARTICLES:

(1) Poll on Koizumi cabinet, political parties, LDP race

YOMIURI (Page 2) (Full)
August 8, 2006

Questions & Answers
(Figures shown in% age. Parentheses denote the results of a survey
conducted in July.)

Q: Do you support the Koizumi cabinet?

Yes 51.1 (50.2)
No 39.2 (39.7)
Other answers (O/A) 2.6 (2.9)
No answer (N/A) 7.1 (7.1)

Q: Which political party do you support now?

Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) 40.6 (38.6)
Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ or Minshuto) 13.0 (14.6)
New Komeito (NK) 3.3 (3.2)
Japanese Communist Party (JCP) 1.3 (1.6)
Social Democratic Party (SDP or Shaminto) 0.7 (1.0)
People's New Party (PNP or Kokumin Shinto) 0.1 (0.1)
New Party Nippon (NPN or Shinto Nippon) 0.1 (---)
Other political parties --- (---)
None 38.7 (39.6)
N/A 1.7 (1.2)

Q: Prime Minister Koizumi has clarified his intention to resign as
prime minister in September this year when his term as LDP president
runs out. This September's LDP presidential election is a de facto
election of the next prime minister. Are you interested in this LDP
presidential election?

Very interested 33.1
Somewhat interested 38.6
Not very interested 18.8
Not interested at all 8.7
N/A 0.7

Q: Who do you think is the most appropriate person for the next
prime minister? Pick only one from among those listed below if any.

Taro Aso 7.4
Shinzo Abe 45.2
Sadakazu Tanigaki 9.2
Taku Yamasaki 0.9

TOKYO 00004452 002 OF 007


Others 2.0
None 30.3
N/A 5.1

Q: (Only for those who gave an appropriate person for prime
minister) Why do you support that person? Pick as many factors as
you like from among those listed below if any.

Political stance 31.0
Diplomatic stance 22.2
Domestic policy 9.7
Reform-oriented mind 17.5
Leadership 16.9
A sense of balance 18.9
Young 28.5
Friendly 26.4
O/A+N/A 4.5


Q: What would you like the LDP presidential election to focus on?
Pick as many issues as you like from among those listed below, if
any.

Economic, employment measures
49.3
Fiscal reconstruction
25.9
Consumption tax
37.0
Social security reform, including pension and healthcare systems

56.9
Low birthrate countermeasures, including childcare support
26.0
Educational reform
16.7
Administrative reform, including public service personnel cuts

18.8
Social divide, including income gaps
18.2
Yasukuni Shrine issue
14.5
Asia diplomacy, including China and South Korea
25.4
North Korea issue
33.1
Defense, security
14.6
Constitutional revision
9.1
Public security, crime prevention
16.1
Food safety
14.5
O/A
0.2
Nothing in particular
3.6
N/A
1.3

Q: Former Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasuo Fukuda has clarified that he

TOKYO 00004452 003 OF 007


would not run in the LDP presidential election. There is an opinion
saying the policy debates would be dull with his staying out of the
race. Do you agree to this view?

Yes 18.6
Yes to a certain degree 18.2
No to a certain degree 18.1
No 34.2
N/A 11.0

Polling methodology
Date of survey: Aug. 5-6.
Subjects of survey: 3,000 persons chosen from among all eligible
voters throughout the country (at 250 locations on a stratified
two-stage random sampling basis).
Method of implementation: Door-to-door visits for face-to-face
interviews.
Number of valid respondents: 1,741 persons (58.0% ).
Breakdown of respondents: Male-49%, female-51% .

(2) Editorial: China between the Defense White Paper's lines

NIHON KEIZAI (Page 2) (Full)
August 8, 2006

The Defense White Paper is a record of the Defense Agency's yearly
activities. If we try to read its policy-based messages, we need to
read between the lines. Then, how should we read the white paper for
2006? This year's white paper, which came out within a month after
North Korea's missile launches, underscores the importance of
missile defense. It shows that the Defense Agency is conscious of
not only North Korea's ballistic missiles but also China's.

There were many challenges the Defense Agency had to explain in this
year's white paper. Those challenges include the issues of
realigning US military bases in Japan and upgrading the Defense
Agency to the status of a ministry. In addition, there were also
scandals involving the Defense Facilities Administration Agency.
When this year's white paper was in the making with final editing,
North Korea fired a number of missiles. The white paper first
touches on this incident in a column. North Korea has been a matter
of security concern to Japan. This year's white paper, however, uses
seven pages about North Korea right after touching on the defense
policy of the United States, an ally of Japan.

When it comes to China, this year's white paper differs in a way
from last year's white paper that came out right after the US
Department of Defense released its report on Chinese military power.
In last year's white paper, the Defense Agency, apparently bearing
it in mind, used restrained expressions so as not to be taken as a
China-is-a-threat argument. Meanwhile, this year's white paper,
sparing 11 pages on China, carries a number of concentric circles
with Beijing at their centers. These circles denote the ranges of
China's five ballistic missile capabilities. One of them is the
DF-5, a long-range ballistic missile that covers North America, the
greater part of the African continent, and Australia within its
range.

This year's white paper also details missile defense. However, it
explains missile defense with descriptions from technical
perspectives and gives no strategic explanations. This year's white
paper is the first to carry such concentric circles that show the
ranges of China's ballistic missiles. This is "for easy

TOKYO 00004452 004 OF 007


understanding," according to the Defense Agency. However, the 2006
white paper-if we try to read between the lines in its
entirety-implies that the Defense Agency is pushing ahead with its
planned introduction of a missile defense system while bearing in
mind not only North Korea's ballistic missiles but also China's, and
that the agency is expecting its deterrent effects.

Publishing a white paper on the defense of Japan means contributing
to Japan's confidence-building measures or showing Japan's hand to
foreign countries. The military transparency of a country publishing
an accurate white paper is said to be high. So its English version
has an important meaning. On the day following its reporting of this
year's white paper in a cabinet meeting, the Defense Agency made its
English version available on its website for the first time. This is
an estimable approach.

(3) Yasukuni part 2: Argument renouncing separate enshrinement of
Class-A war criminals shaken; Key Shinto religious teacher refuses
to express view

MAINICHI (Page 2) (Excerpts)
August 7, 2006

The Mainichi Shimbun contacted the bereaved families of the 14
Class-A war criminals enshrined at Yasukuni Shrine along with the
country's war dead and received responses from 13 of the families.
Of them, eight families indicated their readiness to accept the
separation of the souls of their kin from Yasukuni, noting: "We
never asked the shrine to enshrine our family member there. We just
want to quietly console the spirits of the deceased like ordinary
people." Yasukuni Shrine, however, insists, "Even if all the
bereaved families agree to separate the souls of their deceased
family members from Yasukuni Shrine, it is impossible for us to do
so." A sense of the inconsistency of Shinto teaching, which ignores
the feelings of bereaved families, is beginning to spread across the
families.

Separating the 14 Class-A war criminals from Yasukuni Shrine is a
20-year-old argument proposed first by then Prime Minister Yasuhiro
Nakasone in 1985.

Tadashi Yuzawa, chief priest of Yasukuni Shrine, met in March 2004
with then Agriculture Minister Yoshinobu Shimamura in a reception
room of the shrine office. In February, former Prime Minister
Nakasone called again for separating the Class-A war criminals from
Yasukuni Shrine on a television program, saying, "Bereaved families
will support this idea." Shimamura's visit to the shrine was to
sound out Yasukuni's stance on this. He told Yuzawa, "Unless the
Class-A war criminals are removed, the emperor will never be able to
visit Yasukuni Shrine, something that the spirits of the war dead
want the most."

Yuzawa replied, "Under Shinto teachings, it is not possible to
separate them from Yasukuni once enshrined." He put on the table a
piece of paper that carried the words "The souls of the dead
enshrined at Yasukuni will remain there even if their memorial
tablets are removed." He continued, "I would rather Mr. Nakasone
work to persuade China." Yasukuni Shrine released the same day its
view that rejected the notion of separating Class-A war criminals.

The Association of Shinto Shrines (Jinja Honcho) in Shibuya Ward,
Tokyo, which overseas 80,000 shrines throughout the nation,
announced the same view in June 2005. Commenting on the intention of

TOKYO 00004452 005 OF 007


Association, an informed source explained: "The announcement
followed the incident in which Chinese Vice Premier Wu Yi cancelled
her meeting with Prime Minister Koizumi and returned home. It was
intended to counter pressure from China." It appears that in
responding to the argument for separating Class-A war criminals from
Yasukuni Shrine, Shinto shrines began pursuing a political argument,
quite apart from their religious teachings.

According to the Shinto view, bunshi or separating the enshrined
deity from the shrine means transferring the deity to another shrine
for worshiping, in a way similar to lighting a candle with the flame
of another candle. The common term that is used for separate
enshrining (bunshi) is equivalent to erasing the enshrinement of
(Class-A war criminals in this case) as deities (haishi), according
to Shinto teaching. In the Association's view, in order to transfer
the memorial tablets of the 14 Class-A war criminals from Yasukuni
to another shrine, it is necessary to remove all 2.46
million-memorial tablets of the war dead, too. This is in reality
impossible. Professor Inoue at the Kokugakuin University Shinto
Culture Studies Department said, "In theory, separate enshrinement
of Class-A war criminals is possible. However, if the Association
says that it will not do that, then that becomes Shinto teaching."

The Association was established in 1946. It has a major influence on
Shinto shrines for it has authority to set the training courses for
Shinto priests to be certified. Though it does not have Yasukuni
Shrine under its jurisdiction, it supports it on the personnel side
and provides advice on Shinto teachings.

The Association's Shinto Teaching Research Center is responsible for
Shinto religious theory. Koremaru Sakamoto, professor of modern
history of Shinto religion at the Kokugakuin University Shinto
Culture Studies Department, is responsible for the Yasukuni Shrine
issue there. Sakamoto wrote the shrine's basic view that renounced
the idea of the separate enshrinement of Class-A war criminals. The
Association's views are so important that once they are issued, they
become established teaching, according to a religious scholar. Other
Shinto teaching committee member simply skimmed through the draft of
the basic views during a meeting. Sakamoto also serves as an
editor-in-chief of the Shrine Courier. He is a key figure in the
Shinto teaching. He has thus far repeatedly explained to influential
politicians who called for removing Class-A war criminals from
Yasukuni Shrine, "That is impossible."

Responding to an interview with the Mainichi Shimbun, Sakamoto on
the evening of August 5 said, "I am tired of discussing Yasukuni
Shrine itself." However, when the interviewer showed him a thesis
written in 1979, the year following the enshrinement of Class-A war
criminals at Yasukuni Shrine along with the war dead, he changed his
countenance and read the thesis silently. He then said, "If proper
discussions on the matter had been carried out at that time, the
situation would have been different."

He then said, "I cannot say anything about it. If I did, many things
would simply crumble. I am just a man who is working for the Jinja
Honcho. Whether it was wrong or right, (Yasukuni Shrine) did
enshrine Class-A war criminals. The state took the lead in this
process." What was the thesis that upset this key Shinto teacher?

(4) Debate on Yasukuni Shrine taking new turn, with focus shifted
from propriety of prime minister's visits to shrine status

ASAHI (Page 1) (Slightly abridged)

TOKYO 00004452 006 OF 007


August 8, 2006

The Yasukuni issue is one of the major issues in the Liberal
Democratic Party presidential race. The debate on Yasukuni is taking
a new turn recently, with the question of what the shrine should
taking center state, besides the propriety of visits by Prime
Minister Koizumi and the next prime minister. Foreign Minister Aso
has proposed turning Yasukuni into a nonreligious corporation and
then reviewing in a Diet session the list of souls enshrined there.
Finance Minister Tanigaki has also expressed support for the notion
of separating Class-A war criminals from the shrine.

Focus shifted to notion of secularizing Yasukuni

Aso proposes in an article, "My viewpoint," written for today's
Asahi Shimbun that the government first should urge Yasukuni Shrine
to voluntarily give up on the current status of a religious
corporation and make it a national war-memorial facility by enacting
legislation. Aso adds that if the prime minister and cabinet
ministers go ahead with visiting Yasukuni Shrine under the current
situation, the visits might turn into a political issue and result
in undermining even the main purpose of the visits." Based on this
view, Aso has compiled his private proposal. He reportedly passed
its copies to Yasukuni Shrine and the Japan War-Bereaved Association
by the end of July, suggesting that they look into the proposal.

Aso has decided not to pay homage at Yasukuni Shrine until his
proposal is put into practice. Finance Minister Tanigaki has also
clearly said he would forgo a visit to the shrine for the time
being. Tanigaki said: "The enshrinement of Class-A war criminals has
become a thorn stuck in the throat," adding that "the ball is in the
court of Yasukuni Shrine," urging Yasukuni to take some step."

Aso and Tanigaki share a view that Yasukuni Shrine to make an
independent judgment, but Aso reiterates the need that a decision
should be made on which souls be enshrined at Yasukuni, including a
review of the enshrinement of Class-A war criminals. LDP Policy
Research Council Chairman Hidenao Nakagawa, who is close to Chief
Cabinet Secretary Abe, has also referred to a plan to resubmit a
bill designed to place Yasukuni under state jurisdiction.

Meanwhile, Abe indicated in a press conference yesterday a negative
view about the review of the status of Yasukuni Shrine. He said:
"Reviewing the religious status of Yasukuni Shrine and the enshrine
dietary is not a matter on which the government can express its
views." In contrast, Aso has stressed the need to review the status
of the shrine with a view to the prime minister visiting the shrine.
Aso and Abe, who visited the shrine this April, thus take different
stances about this issue, though they take similar views on foreign
policy.

Even so, since Aso, Tanigaki, and Abe are all members of the Koizumi
cabinet, if Prime Minister Koizumi pays homage at Yasukuni on Aug.
15, it is uncertain to what extent they can discuss the matter. In a
speech yesterday, Nakagawa criticized Aso's private proposal,
remarking: "It would be fine for him to expound his theory, but
doing so as a member of the government should be avoided from the
viewpoint of religious freedom secured in the Constitution."

High hurdles to overcome before realization

Debate on a review of the status of Yasukuni Shrine is heating up.
But there are several high hurdles to clear, like what to do about

TOKYO 00004452 007 OF 007


the notion of secularizing the shrine, how to treat the souls of
Class-A war criminals, and how to sum up World War II.

Former LDP Vice President Taku Yamasaki insists on the need to
construct a national secular war memorial. In a speech yesterday, he
said: "The notion of secularizing the shrine was discussed some 30
years ago, but it is hard to believe that the shrine will agree to
return the status of a religious corporation."

Starting from the 1960s through the 1970s, the LDP submitted five
times a Yasukuni bill designed to turn the shrine into a special
corporation and to defend the spirits of the war dead on the state's
responsibility, on the premise of Yasukuni coming up with this
proposal. But the bill was killed in June 1974.

Yasukuni Shrine was willing to be placed under state control. In
part because the shrine was under the jurisdiction of the Army and
Navy Department when the war terminated, Yasukuni announced in 1969
plans to emerge itself from the status of a religious corporation.
Once the religious status is removed from the shrine, it will become
able to receive funds from the central and local governments because
donations from them will no longer infringe on the principle of
separation between religion and politics.

But this plan was dropped because it was difficult to secularize the
shrine itself, in addition to strong criticism of the idea of
placing Yasukuni under state control as "returning to prewar
conditions." At that time, the conservative and progressive forces
were at loggerheads.

The Legislative Bureau House of Representatives cited as conditions
for making Yasukuni Shrine into a nonreligious facility "changing
Shinto prayers into simple words intended for the souls of the war
dead," "abolishing the sale of paper fortunes," and the like.
Yasukuni Shrine, though, reacted fiercely to these conditions,
claiming: "That will make the shrine an unidentified facility, with
no souls enshrined." The Japan War-Bereaved Association, who had
been in favor of placing Yasukuni under state jurisdiction, also
gave it up in response to the shrine's reaction. The bereaved group
shifted the main purpose of its activities to bringing about an
official visit to the shrine by the prime minister.

If a bill related to Yasukuni Shrine is submitted to the Diet and
once debate on Yasukuni issues starts, politicians will have to face
up to the heavy task of summing up World War II. Politics, including
the LDP, will be tested over its capabilities.

SCHIEFFER

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