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Cablegate: Daily Summary of Japanese Press 09/08/06

DE RUEHKO #5166/01 2510813
P 080813Z SEP 06





E.O. 12958: N/A

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(1) Japan needs national major oil company: Plan to revise energy
program revealed

(2) Symposium to think about Japan-US alliance: Japan fettered by
its growing dependence on US

(3) Editorial: Intelligence-gathering satellite - National security
should be ensured with own technology

(4) JIIA suspends website articles due to criticism they were
"anti-Japan"; Some officials unhappy, citing "overreaction"

(5) IIPS releases "21st Century State Image," calling for new
intelligence bureau under prime minister and study to arm Japan with
nuclear weapons

(6) Japan, Philippines to sign EPA tomorrow; Part of labor market to
be liberalized, including allowing in nurses; Pact to come into
force possibly next spring

(7) More than 100 tombs vandalized at Japanese graveyard in

(8) Window column: Whaling town Taiji on Sept. 6


(1) Japan needs national major oil company: Plan to revise energy
program revealed

YOMIURI (Page 9) (Full)
September 7, 2006

A set of proposals to revise the basic energy program, which sets
the government's energy policy for the next 10 years, was unveiled
yesterday. The package stressed the need to establish a large-scale
company that undertakes businesses ranging from the development of
oil fields and refining to sales on par with international oil
majors. As a main feature, the package urged the development of
domestic oil and the reorganization of oil refiners-distributors. It
will be presented at a meeting of the subcommittee of the
Comprehensive Natural Resources and Energy Research Council (an
organ reporting to the economy, trade and industry minister), which
the Natural Resources and Energy Agency will hold on Sept. 7. The
government will then adopt it at a cabinet meeting in December.

The basic program is based on the Basic Energy Policy Law. The
package reflected the new national energy strategy, which METI
released in May.

The package stressed the need to set up a major national oil
company, noting: "It is necessary to drastically improve Japan's
earnings system ranging from development and refining to
distribution and nurture a company with international procurement

In the domestic oil development industry, INPEX Corporation and
Teikoku Oil entered into a merger in April, but their daily
production stands at 370,000 barrels, only about 14% of that of
Exxon Mobile.

TOKYO 00005166 002 OF 008

(2) Symposium to think about Japan-US alliance: Japan fettered by
its growing dependence on US

ASAHI (Page 15) (Slightly abridged)
September 7, 2006

Noriyuki Wakisaka, editorial writer

The University of Tokyo and the Asahi Shimbun jointly hosted a
symposium at Sapporo City, Hokkaido. The objective of the symposium
was to think about the Japan-US alliance in comparison with the
relationships that exist between the United States and other
countries, for instance, European nations and South Korea. Over the
past five years since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in the
US, Japan has strengthened its alliance ties with the Bush
administration in fighting the war on terror. On the other hand,
participants in the symposium analyzed that Japan appeared to have
lost latitude in its diplomacy, compared to other countries, Europe,
for example, and that chances of Japan being involved in a US-led
war are increasing.

Japan may be gradually involved in war

How has the Bush administration shifted relations with its allies
after the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11?

The US is moving in the direction of realigning and strengthening
its alliances with other countries, particularly in the military
area, because of the need to cope with the threats of terrorism and
nuclear proliferation. The participants in the symposium from Japan,
the US, and Europe agreed on this view. They noted that the US had
raised the requirement levels required of its allies in the
following four areas: (1) global deployment transcending regional
frameworks; (2) human contributions through, for instance, dispatch
of troops, in addition to the hosting of US bases; (3) expansion of
anti-terror measures currently centered on police and legal
activities so as to involve military activities; and (4) larger
financial contributions for the US military presence.

The Bush administration's initial foreign and security policy was
put in the hands of Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and other
neo-conservatives. According to US Boston University Prof. Thomas
Berger, a decisive factor in the upcoming US off-year election in
November would be how far public opinion critical of the Iraq war
can spread across the country, given the declining influence of
neo-conservatives at present. The professor, however, added that
America's security strategy that gives top priority to eradicating
the threats of terrorism would remain the same. "The US can't return
to where it was before the 9/11 incident," the professor continued,
"Perhaps the gaps in the recognition of threats could make relations
with allies unstable."

Alliances between Europe, US consolidated, but US-ROK alliance cools

How did changes in US relations with its allies affect its
alliances? One clear thing is that the alliances between the US and
European countries, even after going through a shaky period, have
been able to return to what they were before.

Germany and France raised objections head-on to the US, which was
rushing into war with Iraq in 2003. However, their good relations
with the US were restored later, and in dealing with Iran's nuclear

TOKYO 00005166 003 OF 008

weapons development and the Lebanon crisis, European countries and
the US are jointly looking for ways to resolve the situations.

The members of the European Union (EU) have occasions for joint
talks with the US, aside from the North Atlantic Treaty Organization
(NATO), the basis of the military alliance between the US and the

Compared to European countries, Asia seems unstable in terms of
bilateral relations with the US.

Relations between the US and South Korea, in particular, have cooled
off. The Roh Moo Hyun administration in trying to restore its
national defense autonomy has requested that the US forces transfer
wartime command authority to the South Korean forces. Responding to
the South Korean request in August, the Bush administration declared
it would transfer such authority to South Korea in 2009, three years
earlier than the timeframe requested by Seoul, but this caused an
eruption of criticism from the opposition party. In the discussion
at the symposium, Seinan Jo Gakuin University Prof. Hideki Kan
stated: "Because of the difference in views about the North Korean
threat between South Korea and the US, South Korea may be discarded
by the US."

In recent years, the Japan-US alliance no doubt has further
strengthened its cooperation. The Koizumi administration established
the Law regarding Situations in Areas Surrounding Japan and a new
set of guidelines for Japan-US defense cooperation. It also has been
cooperative toward the US force transformation and dispatched
Self-Defense Forces (SDF) troops to Iraq. In the discussion,
however, someone pointed out that the Japan-US alliance still faced
difficult situations.

One example is deployment of the missile defense (MD) system, which
is now being accelerated due to North Korea's recent missile
launches. Christopher Hughes, professor at the University of Warick
in Britain, noted that chances are strong that Japan will be
involved in a US-led war, saying: "Japan cannot help depending even
more on the US given the characteristics of the highly advanced
missile technology and the integration of the US forces and the

Concerns voiced over lack of Asia diplomacy

How can Japan gain enough room to make its own decisions to deal
with possible contingencies on the Korean Peninsula and in the
Taiwan Strait? Is there also the possibility that Japan may be
placed at the forefront in the US war on terror? In the process of
talks on revising the Japan-US Security Treaty and the guidelines
for Japan-US defense cooperation, Article 9 of the Constitution that
prohibits the overseas dispatch of SDF troops checked Japan from
going too far. Past political administrations gave consideration to
public opinion and the views of opposition parties. Japan was in a
way under a flexible political structure that was able to ensure
national interests were served, even without saying "no" clearly to
the US.

The problem facing Japan now is that this structure has been
changing under the Koizumi administration.

One problem is Japan's lack of an Asian diplomacy. In the case of
Europe, most countries take a united view backing each other in
negotiations with the US. Waseda University Prof. Takehiko Yamamoto

TOKYO 00005166 004 OF 008

explained that Japan's inability to have summit talks with China and
South Korea because of Prime Minister Koizumi's visits to Yasukuni
Shrine "has made it difficult to create an East Asia security
community that will embrace the Japan-US alliance."

Secondly, Japan's identity of being a pacifist nation is shifting,
and nationalism is emerging in Japan, China, and South Korea.

In the discussion, many took the view that instead of pragmatic
conservatism stemming from national interests, conservatism under
the strong influence of ideology is gaining strength, and
ironically, it is narrowing the range of diplomatic options for
Japan to choose.

(3) Editorial: Intelligence-gathering satellite - National security
should be ensured with own technology

SANKEI (Page 2) (Full)
September 8, 2006

An H-2A No. 10 rocket carrying Japan's intelligence-gathering
satellite will be launched on Sept. 10 from the Tanegashima Space
Center. This optical satellite, the third one to be launched, is
capable of taking a picture of an object on the Earth by using
visible light that is similar to ordinary cameras. If a radar
satellite is launched in early next year, four satellites will be in
operation all together as the government planed.

Once the optic satellite goes into orbit between the North and South
Poles, it will be able to take a picture anywhere on Earth once a
day. We would like the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) to
succeed in launching the rocket without fail.

JAXA was supposed to have launched four satellites three years ago.
However, JAXA failed in launching two of the satellites.

In July, North Korea launched ballistic missiles that included a
Taepodong-2 long-range ballistic missile. The rumor is that the
North may next conduct nuclear weapons tests. The North's next move
is extremely dangerous.

To meet the threat from Pyongyang, an intelligence-gathering system
is needed in order ensure Japan's security.

Once the four-satellite system is operational, it will have 24-hour
coverage. Japan's next technical challenge is to improve the
accuracy of imagery. If there is a limit to image quality, analysis
will not be thorough enough. It is possible to make up for
shortfalls by purchasing commercial satellites from Europe and the
US. But since this is a matter related to national security. Japan
should aim to secure its own technology.

We are highly interested in the launch of H-2A No. 10 rocket. It is
the first time for Japan to continue launching a rocket ten times.

The continued launches of the same model of rocket have shed light
on its defects, thereby allowing the improvement of its technology
and enhancing its credibility.

Japan has placed emphasis on the challenge of developing new
technologies in succession. Some have noted that going against the
grain, Japan failed to develop a rocket that is internationally

TOKYO 00005166 005 OF 008

The H-2A rocket is capable of crossing over into the global rocket
market. The development of the H-2A rocket will be completely
transferred to the private-sector companies next year. Once the No.
10 rocket is launched successfully, the success rate will increase
to 90%. Considering this point, failure is unacceptable. We hope for
a complete success.

(4) JIIA suspends website articles due to criticism they were
"anti-Japan"; Some officials unhappy, citing "overreaction"

ASAHI (Page 3) (Abridged slightly)
September 8, 2006

The Japan Institute of International Affairs (JIIA), a foundation
affiliated with the Foreign Ministry, has suspended its online
series of commentaries in reaction to the Sankei Shimbun's
description that one article was an "official anti-Japanese essay."
JIIA President and former ambassador to the United Nations Yukio
Sato expressed his regrets to the Sankei Shimbun. Some JIIA and
Foreign Ministry officials are unhappy with Sato's move, regarding
it as an overreaction. A US newspaper also ran an article about
suppression of freedom of speech. In an interview with the Asahi
Shimbun, Sato said: "There were some inappropriate expressions, such
as 'Yasukuni cult.' The problem was the expressions, not the
contents. We are closely reexamining matters."

The article that drew a barrage of criticism was titled "How Japan
Imagines China and Sees Itself," written by the editor-in-chief of
the English-version of the JIIA website. The article read: "Other
countries will not understand Japanese political views," citing
rising "hawkish nationalism" in discussing the background of
strained Japan-China relations and describing visits to Yasukuni
Shrine by Prime Minister Koizumi and other past prime ministers as
part of a "Yasukuni cult."

A Sankei Shimbun reporter's column critical of the essay appeared in
the Aug. 12 morning edition, reading: "Its tone suggests that
attacks on Japan by China and other countries were just." It also
openly asked Sato: "What is the reason for entrusting Japan's
external messages to a person with extreme views rejecting Japan's
foreign policy and its current security foundation?"

According to JIIA, the institute has suspended the series, including
removing the offending article, as it was inundated with criticisms
and queries following the appearance of the Sankei column. The
paper's Aug. 18 morning edition carried Sato's reply that went: "It
is true that the essay contained some expressions unfit for JIIA, a
public-interest corporation, and terms that may cause some
misconceptions about Japan's position and its situation. As
president of the organization, I deeply regret it."

The standpoint of JIIA, a think tank receiving subsidies from the
Foreign Ministry, is that it can conduct its activities
independently. Some sources connected with JIIA are unhappy with the
organization's move. A senior Foreign Ministry official also
criticized the suspension of the article and called Sato's apology
an overreaction. On Aug. 27, the electronic edition of the
Washington Post ran op-ed article that went, "Backed by growing
nationalism, thought control is becoming mainstream." The commentary
also referred to an arson attack on the house of former LDP
Secretary General Koichi Kato.


TOKYO 00005166 006 OF 008

Sato noted:

"The sensation resulted from our failure to examine the essay in
advance, and I will assume the blame for that. We would like to
resume posting essays by launching an editorial board of outside
experts and establishing a solid screening system for the essays."

(5) IIPS releases "21st Century State Image," calling for new
intelligence bureau under prime minister and study to arm Japan with
nuclear weapons

YOMIURI (Page 2) (Excerpts)
September 6, 2006

The Institute for International Policy Studies (IIPS) chaired by
former Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone released on Sept. 5 a set of
proposals, "Image of Japan as a State in the 21st Century,"
discussing security, crisis management, and social security policies
deemed essential for the country. The report called for the
establishment of a national intelligence agency directly under the
prime minister to single-handedly manage internal and external
intelligence and prepare intelligence and data for national
policies. It also underscored the need to study the nuclear-weapons
issue in order for Japan to be prepared against future international

Touching on the Constitution, the report also proposed revising
Article 9 in a way to specify the Self-Defense Forces as national
army, allow the country to exercise the right of collective
self-defense, which is prohibited under the government's
interpretation of the Constitution, and establish a basic security
law governing ways to exercise the collective self-defense right.
The establishment of a National Security Council by upgrading the
existing Security Council of Japan was also proposed.

Regarding the question of nuclear weapons, the report read: "Japan
must make efforts to strengthen the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty
(NPT) regime and to study the nuclear weapons issue, while standing
firm as a non-nuclear nation to be prepared against future
international upheavals."

Nakasone said in a press conference:

"First, Japan must remain a non-nuclear nation; and second, the NPT
regime must be strengthened. Based on that, Japan should study the
question of (possessing) nuclear weapons because nobody knows how
international relations may change in the future."

Nakasone thus pointed to the need to review the three non-nuclear
principles and study the option of Japan possessing nuclear weapons
to be ready against a collapse of the NPT and the arrangements under
the US-Japan Security Treaty.

On the diplomatic front, the think tank also proposed: (1)
establishing an Economic Cooperation Organization in Asia and an
East Asian Community including the United States, India, and
Australia; and (2) regular summit talks among Japan, China, and
South Korea by strengthening relations with those countries.

(6) Japan, Philippines to sign EPA tomorrow; Part of labor market to
be liberalized, including allowing in nurses; Pact to come into
force possibly next spring

TOKYO 00005166 007 OF 008

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Page 9) (Almost Full)
September 8, 2006

The government will sign an economic partnership agreement (EPA),
including the acceptance of nurses and attorneys, with the
Philippines tomorrow. The likelihood is that the pact will come into
force as early as next spring, once it obtains Diet approval. Once
the accord comes into force, Japan will allow in nurses and other
guest workers from that nation. The Philippines is Japan's fourth
EPA partner, following Malaysia and two other countries. This is the
first EPA that includes partial liberalization of the labor market.

The EPA is an agreement aimed at promoting labor mobility and
liberalization of investment between two countries, in addition to
the movements of goods covered under a free trade agreement (FTA).
It is meant to back overseas advance and the establishment of
operation bases there by companies. Since the pact with the
Philippines covers a wide range of products from mined and
manufactured products to agricultural products, it will serve as a
model case, sparking economic tie-up talks with major Asian
countries, such as Thailand.

Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi is expected to visit Finland to
attend a summit of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM). On that occasion,
he will meet with Philippine President Arroyo and sign the

Japan has agreed to accept a certain number of nurses and
nursing-care workers with Japanese national licenses at the request
of the Philippines, a supplier of such workers. The Philippines will
scrap most of tariffs on electric appliances, electronic goods,
automobiles and other goods as requested by Japan.

Prime Minister Koizumi will also hold a summit with the Vietnamese
leader on Sept. 11 and call for starting EPA talks at an early date.

In rivalry with China, which is increasing its presence among Asian
economies, Japan is rushing to sign EPAs with Southeast Asian
countries. It will likely sign an EPA with Thailand and reach
agreement in general outline with Indonesia within the year.

Talks with Brunei and Chile are going on for an agreement in general
principle. Talks with Gulf nations will start in late September.
Japan also aims at reaching agreement to start talks with India
before the year's end.

(7) More than 100 tombs vandalized at Japanese graveyard in

MAINICHI (Page 26) (Full)
September 8, 2006

Jakarta, Jun Ida

According to Australian Associate Press, it was found on Sept. 6
that more than 100 tombs at a Japanese cemetery in Broome, Western
Australia, were vandalized. An event related to the Japan-Australian
exchange year was being held in the city that day.

The local administrative authority told that those tombs were so
badly smashed that they cannot be repaired. Many Japanese pearl
fishers worked in the pearl industry, which prospered in Broome

TOKYO 00005166 008 OF 008

since the 19th century. Japanese pearl divers who died while at work
are buried at the cemetery.

The pearl festival, an official event for the Japan-Australia
exchange year, has been held in Broome since the 1st. Many Japanese
were taking part in the festival from Taiji Town, which has a sister
city relationship with Broome. Since Taiji Town is known as a
whaling town, members of anti-whaling groups protested the
participation of citizens from Taiji Town during a parade in the
pearl festival.

(8) Window column: Whaling town Taiji on Sept. 6

NIHON KEIZAI (Western edition) (Page 17)
September 7, 2006

Thirty-five bottlenose dolphins were landed on Sept. 6 at Taiji
Town, which is known as a whaling town, for the first time since a
ban on drive-in net fishing was removed this year.

Thirteen fishing boats left a port early in the morning. They found
a shoal of dolphins in the Sea of Kumano about eight kilometers off
the town. The fishing boats surrounded the shoal in a semicircle.
Then fishermen guided dolphins to a bay by around 10:30 a.m., by
making noise with iron bars.

The captured dolphins were two to five meter-long and weighed about
two to three tons. They are to be sold by tender on the morning of
Sept. 7 and shipped to various parts f the country. This fishing
method is exempt from regulations set by the International Whaling
Commission. Taiji Town carries out whaling based on this method
every year, obtaining permission from the prefectural governor. They
are allowed to catch a total of 2,380 whales until the end of next


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