Celebrating 25 Years of Scoop
Special: Up To 25% Off Scoop Pro Learn More



Cablegate: Daily Summary of Japanese Press 10/24/06

DE RUEHKO #6195/01 2970814
P 240814Z OCT 06





E.O. 12958: N/A

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading

Are you getting our free newsletter?

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.


(1) Deputy national security advisor to US president calls "Japan's
military contributions inadequate"; Urges strengthening capability
to deploy overseas

(2) Japanese lawmakers' statements encouraging nuclear debate might
fuel a nuclear domino effect

(3) Missile defense: JDA plans to speed up introduction of
sea-deployed-type missiles sometimes next year, following North
Korea's nuclear test

(4) Reading DPRK's nuclear test: Pyongyang confident "dramatic"
weapons can win over US

(5) Okinawa's choice 10 years after Futenma accord, with
gubernatorial election set for Nov. 19

(6) Arrested former Fukushima governor Sato and his brother received
bribes by using family business as shield; Focus is on degree of his


(1) Deputy national security advisor to US president calls "Japan's
military contributions inadequate"; Urges strengthening capability
to deploy overseas

MAINICHI (Page 2) (Full)
Eve., October 24, 2006

By Toshihiko Kasahara

White House Deputy National Security Adviser Crouch in a speech in
Washington on Oct. 23 called Japan's international contributions on
the military front inadequate, and he urged that the Self-Defense
Forces (SDF) strengthen their capabilities so that they can be
deployed overseas. Commenting on the cargo inspections that will be
carried out based on the United Nations Security Council's sanctions
resolution against North Korea for testing a nuclear weapon, Crouch
pointed out the importance of relevant countries building an
environment for sharing intelligence.

Deputy National Security Adviser Crouch highly praised the
contribution of the SDF to the war on terror, including dispatch of
military units to Iraq, but he also stated: "From the point of view
of Japan's global interests and potential, it is still modest.
Although Japan is the second largest economic power in the world, it
has a very limited capability of bringing security to troubled
spots." In addition, he made this appeal: "I hope to see more
efforts by Japan to strengthen its capability to deploy troops

Crouch is the number two national security adviser in the White
House, next to NSC Adviser Hadley.

(2) Japanese lawmakers' statements encouraging nuclear debate might
fuel a nuclear domino effect

MAINICHI (Page 7) (Abridged slightly)
October 23, 2006

TOKYO 00006195 002 OF 010

By Hiroyuki Yoshida, Washington

In the wake of the latest Japan-US foreign ministerial, the New York
Times carried an article on Oct. 19 titled, "Japan assures Rice that
it has no nuclear intentions." The article contrasted sharply with
Japanese newspapers that focused on an agreement to swiftly
implement the UN Security resolution on sanctions against North
Korea. The reason behind the New York Times article is because
Foreign Minister Taro Aso told Lower House Foreign Affairs Committee
on Oct. 18 this regarding North Korean's nuclear testing: "It is
important to debate the notion of Japan possessing nuclear

The dominant view in Japan, a country upholding the three
non-nuclear principle based on the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and
Nagasaki, is that the country will never seriously consider
developing nuclear weapons. A series of controversial remarks by Aso
and LDP Policy Research Council Chairman Shoichi Nakagawa are tinged
with their apparent desire to keep "nuclear armament" as a political
card in dealing with North Korea and China.

But the US as country that fears nuclear proliferation takes them
differently. Joseph Cirincione, a nonproliferation specialist at
Center for American Progress, a US think tank, strongly warned:

"Learning of Mr. Nakagawa's comment, I thought he seriously wanted
Japan to possess nuclear weapons. Even though they tend to use
freedom of speech as the pretext, government officials and ruling
party lawmakers must not forget that it is extremely dangerous to
discuss the idea of possession of nuclear weapons. Debate in Japan
may spread to South Korea, Taiwan, Indonesia, and other countries in
a chain reaction."

Once debate begins, it might escalate and lead to nuclear
development programs throughout East Asia. Such a risk is always
associated with the psychological game of developing a nuclear

US intelligence agencies assess that Japan, having large amounts of
nuclear reactor-grade plutonium, could develop nuclear weapons in a
year if it wanted to do so. Some nuclear experts already regard
Japan as a potential nuclear power. This can explain why other
countries view nuclear debate in Japan as dangerous.

To begin with, it is unclear whether Aso and others' call for
nuclear debate can work effectively as a deterrent against North

There is no guarantee that the Cold War-era nuclear deterrence
theory can apply to North Korea, which easily carries out reckless
actions, such as launching missiles and conducting a nuclear test.
Even if a nuclear deterrent is effective to some extent, having the
US nuclear umbrella over Japan should be enough. Japan's nuclear
arming is certain to push North Korea further toward developing more
nuclear capability, gravely affecting Japan's security.

Science and Technology Fellow Michael A. Levi of the Council of
Foreign Relations, a US think tank, noted: "Japan is an important
example of how a country can achieve success without possessing
nuclear weapons. The example must not cease to exist."

Japan should not discuss a nuclear option now. It should instead
tell the rest of the world why it has stuck to its non-nuclear

TOKYO 00006195 003 OF 010

principles and then work against the spread of nuclear

(3) Missile defense: JDA plans to speed up introduction of
sea-deployed-type missiles sometimes next year, following North
Korea's nuclear test

YOMIURI (Page 2) (Excerpt)
Eve., October 24, 2006

As a measure to speed up the introduction of a missile-defense (MD)
system, the Defense Agency (JDA) revealed this morning at a joint
meeting of Liberal Democratic Party national defense-related
committees its plan to deploy in 2007, three months earlier than
originally planned at the end of that year, the Standard Missile 3
(SM-3), a sea-deployed intercept missile, which will be mounted on
Aegis vessels. Following North Korea's launching of ballistic
missiles in July and its nuclear weapon test on Oct. 9, coordination
between the Japanese and US governments resulted in an agreement to
refit the Aegis with SM-3s, originally planned in about a year, by
speeding up the process by approximately three months. Under the
refitting, necessary parts and other equipment will be procured from
the US side, and the refitting process speeded up.

The government plans to mount SM-3s on four Aegis ships, starting in
fiscal 2007 and finishing in fiscal 2010.

(4) Reading DPRK's nuclear test: Pyongyang confident "dramatic"
weapons can win over US

ASAHI (Page 3) (Full)
October 24, 2006

Yoichi Funabashi

North Korea has called itself a "proud nuclear weapons state" since
conducting a nuclear test.

Pyongyang's previous nuclear card was "nuclear capability," but this
card is now likely to be that North Korea is a nuclear weapons

In the past, the North Koreans pretended to have a nuclear arsenal
at every occasion, playing a game in which they tried to get a
security guarantee and energy supplies from Japan, the United
States, South Korea, and other countries in return for freezing or
abandoning its nuclear program.

In April 2003, Li Gun, deputy head of the North Korean Foreign
Ministry's American Affairs Bureau, declared to the US during a
break in the three-party talks among the US, China, and North Korea
that his country had nuclear weapons. Li even referred to a nuclear
test and the transfer of nuclear weapons. (The idea of transferring
nuclear weapons was effectively retracted afterwards.)

After hearing of this from the US, China asked the North Koreans if
they were trying to commit suicide.

If North Korea becomes a nuclear weapons state, China will have to
reconsider its relations with it. The DPRK will find itself further
isolated from the international community and difficult to keep
going. China's stern message was to ask the North Koreans if they
were ready for that.

TOKYO 00006195 004 OF 010

From North Korea's point of view, however, a nuclear arsenal may be
a means to prevent being driven to commit suicide.

The North's economy, system, and ideology have collapsed. Instead of
just waiting passively for death, it may be opting for a desperate
strategy, namely possessing nuclear weapons.

North Korea cited the Bush administration's hostile policy as the
reason for going nuclear.

But North Korea's nuclear program dates back much further.

Historian Katherine Weathersby discovered files on North Korea kept
in the former Soviet bloc during the 1962-1986 timeframe and
examined them. She concluded that North Korea set out to develop
nuclear weapons in 1963. Weathersby cited "America's nuclear threat
and the North's emotional distrust that China and the Soviet Union,
even though they were both allies of the North, might betray it" as
the primary factor that pushed President Kim Il Sung to develop
nuclear weapons.

The North's nuclear development has deep roots.

Pyongyang appears to have decided that only a nuclear arsenal and
missiles will be an effective negotiating card in terms of
protecting the current regime, as well as pushing for talks with the
US. In this context, the Agreed Framework signed in 1994 between
Washington and Pyongyang and US Secretary of State Madeleine
Albright's visit to North Korea in 2000 undoubtedly gave Pyongyang
much satisfaction.

A nuclear power can draw international attention and capture the
spotlight. It also can pull the US to the negotiating table. Nuclear
weapons have now become the ultimate dramatic weapon for the
theatrical dictator, Kim Jong Il.

Though North Korea has now become a "proud nuclear weapons state,"
if it parts with its nuclear weapons, its dignity and bravado would
vanish like a mirage. This is the trap these weapons pose, and Kim
Jong Il will likely never part with them.

If we close our eyes to the trap these weapons pose, the crisis will
deepen. If we panic at the crisis, we, too, will walk into the

Why is North Korea working to become a nuclear weapons state? The
Asahi Shimbun plans to analyze the nuclear crisis on the Korean
Peninsula and the background of the crisis in a five-part series.

(5) Okinawa's choice 10 years after Futenma accord, with
gubernatorial election set for Nov. 19

ASAHI (Page 5) (Full)
October 23, 2006

In November this year, Okinawa Prefecture will hold its 10th
gubernatorial election since its return to Japan. The election is
expected to focus primarily on the pending issue of relocating and
returning the US Marine Corps' Futenma Air Station in the city of
Ginowan. It was 10 years ago that Japan and the United States
reached an intergovernmental agreement on the relocation and return
of Futenma airfield. However, the airfield has yet to be relocated

TOKYO 00006195 005 OF 010

or returned. In 1995, US servicemen raped a local schoolgirl. Since
that incident, Okinawa has argued about the presence of US military
bases on the island prefecture, sometimes splitting its local
communities. With the election ahead, the people of Okinawa are
recalling the past decade.

Rape incident: Local protests end up failing to block base
relocation within prefecture

In late August this year, Suzuyo Takasato, 66, felt something
unbearable as she was reading a news story in the paper. It was
about a man who killed himself after killing a woman in the United
States. The man was once in the US Marine Corps and raped a local
schoolgirl in the northern part of Okinawa's main island.

In September 1995, three Okinawa-based US servicemen kidnapped and
raped a local schoolgirl on her way back home from a store.
Takasato, who was a member of Naha City's municipal assembly, and
local residents voiced their protest at once. The incident aroused a
tidal wave of protests all over Okinawa.

The following year, Tokyo and Washington agreed to relocate and
return Futenma airfield. The Japanese and US governments worked out
a final report of the Special Action Committee on Facilities and
Areas in Okinawa (SACO), which incorporated their agreed plans to
return bases and relocate training exercises.

However, many of those plans were preconditioned on relocation
within the island prefecture. Futenma airfield's relocation remained
under the same preconditions even in the two countries' talks over
the realignment of US forces in Japan. Takasato says, "The area of
bases will decrease with the realignment, but old bases will be
realigned into new bases." She added, "In the end, they only
exploited the voice of Okinawa."

In October 1995, a rally was held in Ginowan with the participation
of various organizations from the conservative and reformist blocs.
The rally organizers said a total of 85,000 people gathered for the
rally and called for realigning and reducing the US military
presence. It was said to be Okinawa's largest-scale struggle ever
since its return to Japan.

Yoshikazu Tamaki, a 57-year-old member of Okinawa Prefecture's
assembly, managed the rally as chief of its secretariat. Nowadays,
Tamaki recalls the rally with his self-reflection. The reformists in
Okinawa once upheld their one-time slogan of "removing" all the
bases. However, they changed it to the slogan of "realigning and
reducing" the bases. This slogan rallied a large number of people in
Okinawa. Tamaki is now thinking to himself that something might have
weakened as a result.

In 1998, Tamaki ran in Nago City' mayoral election with his campaign
slogan of opposing Futenma airfield's relocation to Nago. Tamaki was
defeated, however. In the 1995 rally, Masahide Ota, who was the
governor of Okinawa Prefecture, took the platform, and the next one
who took the platform was Keiichi Inamine. Three years later,
Inamine won Okinawa's governorship with his acceptance of Futenma

In those days, there was a gradual rise of voices calling for
economic development in exchange for the maintenance of bases. "The
rally was meant to allow no more bases," Tamaki says, "I wonder if
Okinawa now takes it over."

TOKYO 00006195 006 OF 010

Henoko: Old people disappear in anti-Futenma gatherings

There is a small house in Nago City's Henoko district. The house,
right near the planned construction site for a Futenma alternative,
is for a group of local residents opposing the government's plan to
build an alternative base there. Nowadays, many of those gathering
in the house are young people in Okinawa Prefecture or from mainland

A decade ago, a number of elderly people living in Henoko used to
join gatherings there against Futenma relocation. But now, they can
rarely be seen in the gatherings. Henoko's administrative committee,
a decision-making board of local residents, is now inclining to
accept Futenma relocation in exchange for compensation. "To tell the
truth, I'm against Futenma relocation. But if I say that outside, I
may be cut out of the loop." With this, a local man who has broken
away from the group came out of himself.

Nine years ago, local women-neither civic activists nor labor union
members-walked around in Nago Coty, taking elderly men and women by
the hand.

It was on Dec. 20, 1997, the day before a poll of Nago residents
over whether to accept the government's proposed plan to build an
alternative facility in waters off the coast of Henoko to take over
the heliport functions of Futenma airfield. Yasuhiro Miyagi, 46, a
one-time leader of locals opposing Futenma relocation, thought to
himself that he could work it out when he saw those local women and
their old parents-in-law opposing the newly planned heliport.

The next day, a majority of Nago City voted against the new base

"If we only win in the poll," Miyagi says, "I thought everything
would be over." He went on: "Everybody strove so hard as we thought
it's for once in our life. Nine years later, however, we found that
nothing has changed. The people of Nago City are now worn out."

The government's new base building plan for Futenma airfield has
undergone a number of alterations. However, it remains unchanged as
far as its construction site-Henoko in Nago City-is concerned. That
is because the government has poured a huge amount of money into the
northern part of Okinawa's main island, including Nago City, in the
name of economic incentives, and the city, though conditionally, has
accepted the new base plan.

People are longing for an affluent lifestyle. Miyagi thinks the
government cashed in this natural feeling. "Local governments depend
on the state coffers for finances," Miyagi says. He added, "Can they
turn on the central government?"

Helo crash: Accident unveils abnormality

Ryozo Kinjo, 22, dashed out of a university building as soon as he
heard students shouting to tell the crash of a helicopter on the
campus. The playing field was covered with black smoke, and Kinjo
saw smoke and flames going up by the main building. Somebody cried,
"Take a picture as evidence!" A US serviceman in camouflaged
fatigues was standing there on Kinjo's way in trying to stop him.
Kinjo dodged the US serviceman and turned his cellphone camera.

On Aug. 13, 2004, A US Marine Corps CH-53 heavy-lift helicopter,

TOKYO 00006195 007 OF 010

soon after taking off from Futenma airfield, crashed on the
neighboring campus of Okinawa International University. No one was
injured in the crash. However, the chopper's broken pieces,
including rotor blade debris, scattered and hit nearby houses.

"I realized something that I thought I was seeing as usual in my
daily life was actually something abnormal," Kinjo says.

Kinjo lives at Chibana in Okinawa City. His house is right on the
east side of the US Kadena Air Base. When a US warplane flies over
that area, Kinjo turns up the television to the maximum. When the US
military went on airstrikes in Afghanistan, a US military plane
beamed the searchlight into his room. When he entered Okinawa
International University, the sounds of helicopters did not matter
much to him.

More than one million people live on a small island with US military
bases. The helicopter accident reminded people in Okinawa of such an
abnormal fact.

Mikiko Inafuku, 56, is a professor currently teaching Kinjo in her
seminar at Okinawa International University. Inafuku began to teach
at the university in the 1980s. In those days, she had to suspend
her class frequently due to the roar of helicopters flying to and
from Futenma airfield. Meanwhile, the university double-paned its
windows for soundproofing, and she was not so concerned about
choppers in flight. "I was shocked at the accident," Inafuku says.
She admitted, "I completely got used to something wrong with us

Gov. Inamine: 15-year time limit on dual use fades out

On Oct. 6, Okinawa Prefecture's Governor Inamine met with Prime
Minister Abe at his office for the first time. "The issue of
realigning US forces in Japan is very difficult, and we have our own
stance." With this, Inamine underscored the nonnegotiable line.

Inamine was first elected eight years ago with his campaign pledge
to build a Futenma alternative as a dual-use airport for joint
commercial and military use and set a 15-year time limit on the U.S.
military's use of the new base.

Ever since then, although his campaign pledge was called into
question about its feasibility, Inamine has reiterated his advocacy
of building a dual-use airport and tag on a 15-year time limit to
the U.S. military's use of it. Yoshihiko Higa, a policy adviser to
Inamine, says as follows: "If we set a time limit on the US
military's use of the new base, that airport will be an asset of
Okinawa Prefecture's people in time. At the same time, the
government decided on a package of economic development measures for
the northern region of Okinawa Prefecture. The proposal of a
dual-use airport and a 15-year time limit drew the government's
utmost concessions sparing no expense."

As a de facto compensation for the relocation of Futenma airfield's
heliport functions within Okinawa Prefecture, the government
promised a package of pump-priming measures totaling 100 billion yen
over the next 10 years for the island's northern region. It was the
beginning of an era for Okinawa Prefecture and its population to be
tossed up and down between the government's new base plan for the US
military and its economic package for the base-hosting localities.

Meanwhile, Inamine reiterated "the magma of Okinawa Prefecture's

TOKYO 00006195 008 OF 010

people" time and again, meaning that the wrath of the island
prefecture's people, though seeming to be quiet for now, is boiling
up under the ground and he is standing on it...

The only best plan for Inamine as Okinawa's conservative governor to
obtain local understanding was to build a dual-use airport and limit
the US military's use of it to 15 years, Higa recalls.

Even this proposal, however, was thrown into a wastebasket because
of the realignment of US forces in Japan and the delay in the
planned relocation of Futenma airfield. In April this year, the
government announced a plan to build a new base with a V-shaped pair
of airstrips at a site across the cape of Henoko in Camp Schwab.
Inamine will not accept the new plan. However, the government is now
mulling a new subsidization system to fund the base-hosting
localities according to progress in the realignment of US forces in

While shelving fundamental contradictions between the US military
presence and the economic package, Okinawa Prefecture will pass its
administration to the next governor.

The gubernatorial election will be proclaimed Nov. 2 and will be
held Nov. 19. In the race, the ruling camp will back up Hirokazu
Nakaima, 67, former president of the Okinawa Prefecture Chamber of
Commerce and Industry, with the opposition camp fielding Keiko
Itokazu, 59, currently seated on the House of Councillors. The
election is expected to be a dead-heat race between Nakaima and

(6) Arrested former Fukushima governor Sato and his brother received
bribes by using family business as shield; Focus is on degree of his

YOMIURI (Page 3) (Abridged slightly)
October 24, 2006

Investigation into a bid rigging scandal in Fukushima Prefecture by
the Tokyo District Prosecutors Office special investigation team
resulted in yesterday the arrest of former Gov. Eisaku Sato, 67.
Sato's arrest comes a year and a half after the special
investigative team secretly began investigating his alleged
acceptance of bribes. Upon finding out the fact that Sato's brother
was serving as a "coordinator" of a public works project on behalf
of his brother, the special investigation team cut into the
collusive ties between Sato, who placed the order, and general
contractors, who won the order.

Safety device

A senior prosecutor described Yuji Sato, 63, the former governor's
brother, as a "safety device."

According to a person concerned, former governor Sato, who placed
orders for public works projects, did not accept any petitions from
the construction industry at the prefectural government office or
elsewhere and did not join golf competitions once he found out that
some construction firm members were on the lists of participants.
Seals of approval for bid rigging came from his brother, Yuji --
president of Koriyama Santo Suits, a men's clothing maker based in
the prefecture -- who was responsible for contacting general
contractors. The presence of Yuji, who covered up the former
governor's involvement in money transactions, was the largest

TOKYO 00006195 009 OF 010

bottleneck in the long investigation.

Such individuals as former Maeda Corp. executives and former
Mizutani Kensetsu Chairman Isao Mizutani, 61, admitted to
investigators that they had provided Santo Suits with a series of
kickbacks in the form of payment for a land transaction in return
for receiving orders from the Fukushima prefectural government for
the Kido Dam project, knowing that the kickbacks were effectively
extended to the former governor. Some others, including a realtor,
who had brokered the land transaction, also admitted that the price
had been higher than the actual value.

The investigation team regarded the higher-than-the-actual-value
land transaction as a bribe to the former governor. But the land
transaction between Santo Suits and Mizutani Kensetsu -- a deal
between two private companies -- was a major obstacle.

Given the situation, the investigation team paid attention to the
fact that the former governor had been a director of Santo Suits
until May 2002 and that he was still the company's top shareholder
with over a 40% stake. The team identified the suit company's
profits as the former governor's profits.

Holding a public office is a requirement for a bribery charge, but
an individual who is not a civil servant can also be punished as an
accomplice. Although it was Yuji who had directly received benefits
from Mizutani Kensetsu and other contractors, investigators reached
the conclusion that he and the former governor, the person
responsible for placing orders for public works projects, had
received bribes as a team, recognizing the former as an accomplice.

Coordinators played main roles since 1993 graft case involving
general contractors

In public works scandals that came to light in recent years,
coordinators mediating between government offices and corporations
often played key roles.

For instance, in a bid rigging case over a tunnel project placed by
the Wakayama prefectural government, the Osaka District Public
Prosecutors Office arrested a former golf course operator, who had
served as a mediator between the chief prefectural treasurer and
Hazama Corp. that won the order for the project. In an influence
peddling case involving Gyosai Toshi Kaihatsu Kenkyujo, a Tokyo
consulting firm, cracked by the Tokyo District Public Prosecutors
Office in 2002, the firm's president who was also a former secretary
to a lawmaker also played a central role behind the scenes. The firm
also gave large amounts of bribes to a former Tokushima governor and
a former mayor of Shimotsuma City, Ibaraki Prefecture.

In 1993, prosecutors also arrested then Ibaraki and Miyagi governors
for taking bribes from general contractors in connection with a
graft case. Since this case, firms have been avoiding making direct
contacts with local chiefs.

Former prosecutor Nobuo Gohara, currently a professor at the Toin
University of Yokohama Graduate School Law School, took this view:

"To cope with enhanced efforts to crack down on bid rigging
practices under the Antimonopoly Law, firms have since around 1992
managed to reach agreements on bid rigging ambiguously by, for
instance, contacting individuals instead of holding meetings. People
close to those placing orders have come to acquire strong

TOKYO 00006195 010 OF 010


Lawyer Kawasaki, a director of the Fair Trade Institute, took the
following view regarding the fact that Maeda Corp. that won the
Fukushima dam project and its subcontractor Mizutani Kensetsu gave

"General contractors have acquired the underground method of
coordinating orders by using prospective subcontractors."


© Scoop Media

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading
World Headlines


Join Our Free Newsletter

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.