Cablegate: Daily Summary of Japanese Press 07/05/07

DE RUEHKO #3073/01 1860813
P 050813Z JUL 07





E.O. 12958: N/A



(1) Koike assumes one key post after another owing to "keen sense of
(political) smell," arousing jealousy of lawmakers eager to join

(2) Kyuma remarks expose gap in Japan's aim and reality 3
(3) Kyuma remarks and nuclear policy: Japan must stop relying on
nuclear deterrent

(4) In the aftermath of base-hosting municipality's opposition to US
military realignment

(5) Comfort women issue: JCP Chairman Shii urges Prime Minister Abe
to apologize to the world

(6) Comfort women issue remains unresolved

(7) Upside-down flag at Okinawa International University; UK
associate professor calls action an SOS signal; University president
orders stop to "criminal infringement"


(1) Koike assumes one key post after another owing to "keen sense of
(political) smell," arousing jealousy of lawmakers eager to join

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Page 24) (Full)
July 5, 2007

The first female defense minister in history celebrated her
fifty-fourth birthday yesterday. This is the second cabinet post
given to Yuriko Koike, who has served five terms in the House of
Representatives. Some Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) members who are
yearning for a cabinet post are overheard saying, "I wonder why only
Koike has been treated favorably." But such lawmakers first should
learn from her how to get along in the political world.

In a press conference she gave after assuming the top defense post,
Defense Minister Koike countered an attack against Democratic Party
of Japan (Minshuto) President Ichiro Ozawa, who has stepped up his
criticism of the Abe administration.

Koike said: "I know best about Mr. Ozawa's defense policy. In
Minshuto, (views over defense policy) are split. Ozawa should
announce not his own ideals but the party's policy. Unfortunately, I
have to return (his criticism) to him." The reason why she had to
"unfortunately" denounce the leader of the main opposition party is
because she moved from party to party.

After graduating from Cairo University, Koike served as an
anchorwoman for the TV Tokyo program, "World Business Satellite." In
1992, she ran as a candidate backed by the Japan New Party in the
House of Councillors election, ranked 2nd, following party head
Morihiro Hosokawa, among candidates for the party's proportional
representation segment and was elected for the first time.

In 1993, Koike ran in the Hyogo No. 2 constituency of the Lower
House election and won a Lower House seat for the first time. She
joined the defunct New Frontier Party supporting current Minshuto
leader Ichiro Ozawa in 1994. After the party was disbanded in 1997,

TOKYO 00003073 002 OF 010

she became a member of Jiyuto (the Liberal Party). When Jiyuto left
the coalition government in April 2000, she took part in
establishing Hoshuto (the Conservative Party), separating from

Koike became a member of the LDP in December 2002. In July 2003, she
joined the Mori faction (now, the Machimura faction), from which
Junichiro Koizumi became prime minister in July 2003. She served as
environment minister from September 2003 through September 2006,
during which she pushed for the introduction of the Cool Biz
campaign, a casual business dress code.

In the 2005 general election, Koike volunteered for Koizumi's first
"assassin" position against an LDP lawmaker who voted against postal
privatization bills, changing her constituency from Hyogo to the
Tokyo No. 10 constituency. At that time, Koizumi flattered her by
saying: "You are really courageous, though you are also charming."
When the Abe administration was launched last September, she was
appointed as Abe's special advisor.

Some call her a "migratory bird," focusing on her hopping from one
political party to another. But all of the five political parties to
which Koike once belonged are now defunct. It can also be taken that
Koike is a successful woman who rode out the storm of the
reorganization of the political scene that started in the 1990s.
What is to be particularly noted is that she got in close to the
most influential figures in the political parties to which she
belonged or belongs, such as former Prime Minister Hosokawa, Ozawa,
former Prime Minister Koizumi, and Prime Minister Abe.

The following was a typical success story in the LDP in the past: A
high position is finally awarded to a person who pledged loyalty to
his or her factional boss and steadily dealt with unspectacular work
for decades. Koike's political stance, however, is far from this
style. Her case might be regarded as a new success model.

Kichiya Kobayashi, a political commentator, said: "Ms. Koike has a
keen sense of smell to sniff out who holds the supreme power of the
time. This must be something she was born with." He added: "While
assuming political power for five years and five months, Prime
Minister Koizumi picked himself those with whom he wanted to work,
abolishing the conventional stance of giving priority to a balance
between factions and to seniority. This new approach has now taken
root. In the current political world, lawmakers who have a poor
sense of smell will never be blessed with an important post, even if
they are competent."

Will anyone be promoted to an important post if they improve their
sense of smell? To this question, Kobayashi replied: "If you make
such efforts unskillfully, those around you might take the efforts
as part of trickery and boo you. In such a case, the prime minister
will find it difficult to field you to a key post. If such a sense
of smell is natural one, though, criticism will not grow louder." It
seems difficult for conventional-type lawmakers to follow Koike's
political stance.

Koike published the book titled, "Ways for women to establish
personal contacts - Success women's passport." Koike might become
the first (prime minister) in (the nation's) history.

(2) Kyuma remarks expose gap in Japan's aim and reality

TOKYO 00003073 003 OF 010

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Page 2) (Abridged slightly)
July 4, 2007

Japan, as the only country to have suffered nuclear attacks, has
been calling for nuclear disarmament on one hand and has been
enjoying peace under the United States' nuclear umbrella on the
other. (Resigned) Defense Minister Fumio Kyuma's remarks justifying
the United States' dropping of atomic bombs of Japan have exposed
the gap between Japan's goal and its reality concerning nuclear

In 1967, then Prime Minister Eisaku Sato announced the three
non-nuclear principles of not producing, possessing, or allowing
nuclear weapons into Japan. Since then, all successive prime
ministers, including Shinzo Abe, have repeatedly announced their
determination to uphold the three principles.

Japan has submitted a resolution calling for nuclear disarmament to
the UN General Assembly every year since 1994. They have been
adopted by a majority vote. Japan has also actively called for
nuclear armament by, for instance, lobbying other countries to sign
the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT).

Relying on the United States' nuclear deterrent leads to
acknowledging the effectiveness of nuclear arms. Other countries are
already aware of such a situation in Japan. For instance, when Japan
protested France's nuclear test in 1995, Paris said: "Japan has been
able to enjoy peace owing to protection by the United States'
nuclear umbrella."

Given Japan's mage as blindly following the United States,
justifying the United States' dropping of the atomic bombs would
cause Japan's call for nuclear disarmament to lose its cogency.

Japan's response to the United States also remains elusive, which
has reached an agreement on civil nuclear cooperation with India,
which has conducted nuclear tests without joining the Nuclear
Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT). In view of the North Korean issue,
some countries have begun referring to Japan's stance as a double

In 1996, the International Court of Justice handed down its advisory
opinion reading: "The threat or use of nuclear weapons would
generally be contradictory to the rules of international law." With
that in mind, even a senior Defense Ministry official said: "The
defense minister mustn't have made remarks that could be taken as
justifying the use of nuclear weapons." Kyuma's remarks not only
sent shockwaves throughout Hiroshima and Nagasaki but also
undermined Japan's position in the international community.

(3) Kyuma remarks and nuclear policy: Japan must stop relying on
nuclear deterrent

ASAHI (Page 15) (Abridged)
July 5, 2007

By Kiichi Fujiwara, professor of international politics, University
of Tokyo

Both the ruling and opposition parties reacted speedily and
furiously to (the A-bomb) remarks by Defense Minister Fumio Kyuma
(who has since stepped down). His remarks were not based on

TOKYO 00003073 004 OF 010

historical facts. Everyone rejected the remarks which seemed to have
ignored the suffering of the atomic-bomb survivors, a factor that
takes precedence over historical facts. The strong reaction to
Kyuma's comment has proven that the nation's tragic feeling toward
the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki has not faded. Although calls
for protecting the (peace) Constitution from change have weakened, a
sense of mission to hand down the experience of atomic bombings to
future generations is still shared by all political parties from the
Liberal Democratic Party to the Japanese Communist Party.

But that is not what really matters in this case. Ruling and
opposition party lawmakers highlighted the need for nuclear
disarmament, while slamming Kyuma. But what has the Japanese
government done to eliminate nuclear weapons from the world?

True, Japan since 1994 has submitted to the UN General Assembly a
series of resolutions calling for nuclear disarmament, and they have
been adopted. However, such countries as the United States, India,
Pakistan, China, and North Korea have either opposed those
resolutions or abstained from voting. Nuclear disarmament
resolutions without the support of nuclear powers carry little

Japan is a country that has called for nuclear disarmament on the
one hand and relied on the United States' nuclear umbrella on the

Whether or not the US nuclear umbrella has really helped the
security of Japan is not clear. But in determining their policies
toward Japan during the Cold War, the Soviet Union and China could
not rule out the possibility of the United States using nuclear
weapons in striking back. It is undeniable that the nuclear
deterrent played a certain role in Asia's international relations.

Japan has been a proponent of nuclear disarmament and a beneficiary
of (the United States') nuclear deterrent at the same time. The
country has been urging the world no to repeat the tragedies of
Hiroshima and Nagasaki, while relying on (the United States')
nuclear arms.

Japan's North Korea policy clearly tells of its dependence on the
United States' nuclear deterrent. In urging North Korea to abandon
its nuclear programs, Japan has relied not only on the United
States' economic sanctions but also on its nuclear deterrent. Japan,
having pursued a hard-line stance toward the North, now finds itself
isolated against the backdrop of US-North Korea bilateral talks.

What can Japan do now? The answer is to incorporate nuclear
disarmament in its set of pragmatic policies and launch an effort
for regional nuclear disarmament.

For Japan to continue seeking only a reduction in the United States'
nuclear arms is insufficient. We will not be able to free ourselves
from our dependence on (the United States) nuclear deterrent unless
nuclear arms in other countries in the region, such as North Korea
and China, are also reduced. In addition to calling for nuclear
disarmament, Japan must draw those countries into nuclear arms
reduction talks, though that will not be easy.

There have been new developments, as well. In January this year,
former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and others released a
statement calling for nuclear nonproliferation and disarmament. The

TOKYO 00003073 005 OF 010

view has also spread that nuclear nonproliferation takes nuclear
powers' efforts to reduce their nuclear arms.

(4) In the aftermath of base-hosting municipality's opposition to US
military realignment

TOKYO (Page 28) (Full)
July 3, 2007

The city of Iwakuni in Yamaguchi Prefecture is finally getting into
a scrape. The city, which hosts the US Marine Corps' Iwakuni Air
Station, has rejected the government-proposed redeployment of US
carrier-borne aircraft to the base in the planned realignment of US
forces in Japan. The government has therefore cut off its
subsidization of the city's new municipal government office building
currently under construction. The city's mayor, Katsusuke Ihara, who
has been opposed to the US military's realignment, proposed a
general account budget for the time being. The city's municipal
assembly somehow approved the mayor's proposed budget plan. However,
the city is still in a plight. That is because the government urges
the mayor to accept the US military realignment while taking its
subsidy for the city as hostage. The Tokyo Shimbun reports on the
city in turmoil.

Gov't takes subsidy as "hostage," Iwakuni feeling the pinch

"The mayor has not changed his stance at all. Basically, the mayor
should accept the realignment. And then, the mayor should enter into
consultations with the government."

On June 29, the municipal assembly of Iwakuni City held an ad hoc
meeting, in which the assembly focused its discussion on the pending
issue of accepting US carrier-borne fighter jets. A pro-realignment
member of the city's assembly urged the mayor to think twice about
his stance of rejecting the US military realignment.

The turmoil dates back to 1996 when Japan and the United States
agreed to redeploy air tankers from the US Marine Corps' Futenma Air
Station in Okinawa Prefecture to the Iwakuni base. At the time, the
two countries agreed to return the site of Futenma airfield into
local hands.

Iwakuni City planned to rebuild its municipal government office
building that was damaged in an earthquake. The city asked the
government for its financial backing of the construction project.
The government promised a subsidy of 4.9 billion yen for the
project. "There's no definite contract in written form, but I
reached agreement with a responsible person of the Defense
Facilities Administration Agency," Ihara said.

In October 2005, however, the Japanese and US governments decided on
a plan to redeploy Atsugi-based carrier-borne fighter jets to the
Iwakuni base in the planned process of realigning US forces in
Japan. The carrier-borne jets in question are fighter attackers,
which are far noisier than refueling aircraft. Their number is also
planned to be more than twice. Their planned redeployment to the
Iwakuni base turned into a big problem that divided the city. In
March 2006, Iwakuni City polled its residents. In that local
referendum, about 90 % of the valid votes were against the
redeployment of carrier-borne jets to Iwakuni. In April that year,
the city held a mayoral election. In that mayoral race as well,
Ihara, who is opposed to the realignment, was elected for a third

TOKYO 00003073 006 OF 010


The city's voice was shown in the poll. In December 2006, however,
the DFAA cut 2.5 billion yen in its subsidy for the city's new
office building construction project. Meanwhile, voices in favor of
the realignment gained ground in the city's municipal assembly as
well. Instead of asking for government subsidization, the city's
municipal government chose to compile a general account budget in
March and again in June with its idea of issuing special municipal
bonds after Iwakuni City is consolidated with neighboring
municipalities. However, the assembly rejected this idea of finding
ways and means.

The city's municipal government compiled a provisional budget for a
period of three months. This ad hoc budget has now expired. "So,"
one member of the city's assembly says, "even water supply is
illegal." Ihara said, "I can no longer trouble the citizens." The
mayor then revised the budget plan to use a government subsidy as in
the past.

In the special session of the city's municipal assembly, Ihara was
grilled with questions about whether he has changed his mind to
accept the proposed redeployment of carrier-borne jets to the
Iwakuni base. "How can I change my stance in one night? This is not
a problem that I can settle alone." With this, the mayor flatly
denied his change of mind. One pro-realignment assemblyman pursued
Ihara, saying: "That subsidy is not earmarked in the government's
budget, so there's no hope for it." Another assembly member called
it an "empty budget."

In the meantime, an anti-realignment assemblyman defended Ihara,
saying: "They're taking the budget as hostage and trying to persuade
the mayor. Such an approach is unacceptable. The government has
driven the mayor into a corner, so the government is to blame."

The assembly heated up over the proposed budget. However, the
assembly had already agreed behind the scenes to fast-track it.

Toshiyuki Kuwahara, a pro-realignment assemblyman who voted against
the general account budget, backed Ihara, saying: "I'm pleased that
the mayor has now made the political decision to use a government
subsidy. We would also like to make efforts for 3.5 billion yen."
Kuwahara then bowed his head before the mayor. "Thank you very
much," he said. The assembly hall was covered with a big hand.

"There's no chance of expecting (government) subsidization as long
as the mayor does not change his stance of opposing the redeployment
of US carrier-borne aircraft to the Iwakuni base." For this reason,
two assembly members voted against the budget plan. However, the
remaining 31 members of the city assembly voted for it.

"I could get understanding from the greater part of the assembly
members," Ihara said in a press conference. "It was good." So
saying, he looked relieved.

Budget revised as last-ditch measure, but problem put off

Masayuki Takeda, a pro-realignment assemblyman of Iwakuni City,
voted for the mayor's revised budget plan. Takeda explained the
battle in the ad hoc assembly session: "We voted against the idea of
using special municipal bonds with the consolidation of Iwakuni City
and other municipalities. The mayor has now revised the budget plan

TOKYO 00003073 007 OF 010

to use a government subsidy, so we want the mayor to go for it. The
mayor has now revised the budget. This can be also taken as the
(mayor's) de facto acceptance of the US military alignment."

Another assemblyman of the city, Jungen Tamura, is opposed to the
proposed realignment of US forces in Japan. Tamura says: "The budget
totals 66 billion yen. This budget has been taken as hostage in its
entirety. Assembly members in favor of the realignment were also
worried about its impact. Japanese have a bad habit of putting off
what is troublesome. That's it."

However, it is still difficult for Iwakuni City to expect government
subsidization. "The mayor doesn't want to nod his head (say yes),"
Takeda said. "Even so," he added, "if the mayor does not shake his
head (say no), that's okay." Takeda went on: "If the mayor shows
understanding on the government's national defense policy, there
will be a chance. If the mayor can't do so, then the bout will enter
round two. There may be even a mayoral election."

Tamura said: "Defense Minister Fumio Kyuma has been saying he feels
sorry (for Iwakuni). There will be an election for the House of
Councillors. In addition, there are some other major factors for the
nation. Given such factors, there could be even more developments.
As long as the mayor remains opposed to the realignment, he's a
headache for the government. The government will compile the
supplementary budget in December, so the next climax will be around
that time."

Ihara is now in the turmoil. "I'm expecting government
subsidization," Ihara said. "When it comes to the realignment of US
forces in Japan," the mayor added, "I will explore a solution that
is convincing not only from the spectrum of the country's national
defense but also from the perspective of our local safety and
security. In June, Ihara met with Defense Minister Kyuma. However,
Ihara will further try to dig out what is unclear about the
realignment of US forces, such as the noise and night training
practice (NLP) of carrier-borne fighter jets that are known for
their hard training. In May this year, the US Military Realignment
Special Measures Law came into effect. Under this law, the
government will subsidize base-hosting municipalities in stages
according to the degree of their cooperation on the realignment of
US forces in Japan. However, the DFAA says it does not know if
Iwakuni City will be considered under the law.

In addition to the city's municipal assembly, the local chamber of
commerce and industry and the Yamaguchi prefectural government are
also inclining to accept the proposed redeployment of US
carrier-borne jets in the process of realigning the US military
presence in Japan.

"The situation is difficult. Some people say, 'The way things are
going, Iwakuni City will go under like Yubari City (in Hokkaido).'
There is also such a wrong speculation going around." With this,
Ihara is also aware of being left holding on his own.

How does this situation appear in the eyes of local residents? "We
believed that the promised subsidy of 3.5 billion yen would come,"
said a 60-year-old homemaker, who was in the assembly's gallery for
its discussion during the special session. So saying, she criticized
the government for its carrot-and-stick approach. She was upset with
her city's municipal assembly, saying: "If all the assembly members
had supported the mayor, we wouldn't have seen such a situation.

TOKYO 00003073 008 OF 010

They're split, so the government will take advantage of it."

Even now, metallic sounds last until around 10 p.m. in the vicinity
of the Iwakuni base. When a fighter plane takes off, even the voice
on the phone cannot be heard, says one local resident. Another
homemaker, 68, lives near the fence surrounding the base. "The
government should do soundproofing work before realigning US
forces." So saying, she looked fed up with the jet noise. She voted
against the US military realignment in the city's poll of residents
and voted for Ihara in the mayoral election. However, she is now in
an air of giving up. She said, "If I agree, or even if I don't, they
(US carrier-borne jets) will come, won't they?"

An 81-year-old man, who lives near the base gate, said: "I want the
government to stop the US military realignment. However, we're in a
dilemma. I don't want carrier-borne aircraft. But they will come in
the end, won't they? The mayor has a hard time of it, I think."

A 59-year-old woman, who is "still against the US military
realignment," said with sighs: "We don't want the base. But the base
has been and will be here for decades. Iwakuni also hosts a US
military base, so we can understand the standpoint of people in
Okinawa. However, we cannot accept any more. I want to hear the
opinions of candidates in their campaign for the House of
Councillors election."

Editor's note: Defense Minister Kyuma, standing in the vanguard of
realigning the US military's footprints in Japan, said the United
States' dropping of atomic bombs on Japan "couldn't be helped."
Then, we'd like to ask him. That may be the correct answer in a
history class at grade schools in the United States. But was it
really the only option to end the war? For instance, if the United
States wanted to deprive the Japanese military of the will to fight,
it might be better to drop an atom bomb in the mountains or
otherwise in the sea. The United States targeted densely populated
cities for something like a living-body test. Why?

(5) Comfort women issue: JCP Chairman Shii urges Prime Minister Abe
to apologize to the world

AKAHATA (Page 2) (Full)
July 4, 2007

In his speech at the Foreign Correspondents Club of Japan, Japanese
Communist Party (JCP) Chairman Kazuo Shii on July 3 referred to the
US House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee's adoption of
a resolution calling on the Japanese government to offer a formal
apology to the wartime "comfort women." He said: "In order to dispel
international criticism of and doubts in Japan over this problem,
(Shinzo Abe) as prime minister of Japan should apologize to the
world, accepting the historical facts."

Shii pointed out that the 1993 Kono statement acknowledging the
former Japanese military's coercion and involvement in recruiting
comfort women is the Japanese government's view on this issue. He
stated: "The Kono statement has repeatedly been suppressed by Prime
Minister Abe in his words and actions, and by Japanese lawmakers
supporting Yasukuni Shrine's stand, as seen in their advertisement
on the Washington Post. He then stressed the importance of Abe
offering a formal apology in the form of an official statement under
his official capacity. Although Abe has stated that he stands by the
1993 Kono statement, he stated there was no "coercion" regarding the

TOKYO 00003073 009 OF 010

comfort women issue. His comment came under fire not only from other
Asian countries but also from the United States. The issue has
become serious as seen in the House Foreign Affairs Committee's
approval of the comfort women resolution on June 26. Prime Minister
Abe only stated: "I have no intention of commenting on the

(6) Comfort women issue remains unresolved

SANKEI (Page 1) (Full)
July 5, 2007

"When seeing Japan from this side, cutting off the head of a snake
seems necessary," said a round-faced man while sipping lukewarm tea.
The conversation took place one spring day just before the US House
of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee adopted a resolution
criticizing Japan for the wartime comfort women issue. The man is a
successful business man, an East Asian immigrant born in the prewar
era. Sitting in his living room, he quipped: "Japan has pushed us
toward an extreme direction." He called Japanese arrogant. Japanese
politicians have to make arrogant remarks in order to get ahead.
Members of the "Association of Diet members to think about the
future of Japan and historical education" are a good example. This
is what the man meant to say. He continued:

"The comfort women issue will not be resolved. In American politics,
Jewish people spend the largest amount of money, followed by Asians.
How many of them do you think are Asians who dislike Japan? Asians,
having learned from the method of Jews pursuing the Holocaust, stood
up the same way. This issue will never end. If the resolution does
not clear the House, we will present it again. Next time, we will do
it internationally until the prime minister acknowledges and offer a
clear apology in the Diet. "

The wind was shaking the leaves of trees in his vast garden like a
forest. The man in a bright sunlit room grumbled: "Tomorrow US
Congressman Mike Honda is coming here."

According to the results of a US national consensus, which is
conducted once in a decade, the population of Asian-Americans nearly
doubled in 10 years since 1990. Amid globalization progressing, it
is possible for immigrants to become successful. An explosive
economic growth in China and India has backed their successes.

As a result, a new phenomena has emerged in the US that a society of
immigrants, who keep their relations with their home country, will
continue expanding, not like the conventional pattern under which
second and third generations of immigrants were finally able to
reach success.

The round-faced man, who has close ties with Congressman Honda, who
played a leading role in drafting the comfort women resolution, is
one such Asian immigrants.

Japan is, however, helpless to deal with this change and the

(7) Upside-down flag at Okinawa International University; UK
associate professor calls action an SOS signal; University president
orders stop to "criminal infringement"

RYUKYU SHIMPO (Page 3) (Full)

TOKYO 00003073 010.2 OF 010

July 5, 2007

Yesterday afternoon, on America's Independence Day, Okinawa
International University (OIU) Associate Professor Peter Simpson
(from the UK) and around ten students displayed the American flag
upside-down on a school balcony in order to express their protest of
the presence of Futenma Air Station. OIU President Tomoaki Toguchi
and others put a stop to the "criminal infringement" and ordered
those involved to take down the flag. The associate professor
explained to the president that he had received verbal permission
and offered criticism saying, "I am shocked that the university
would stop such an act of self-expression."

The president and others have responded to Ryukyu Shimpo's interview
requests by stating, "We are in the process of confirming the facts
surrounding this action and thus are unable to comment at this

Associate Professor Simpson emphasized, "We have no intention of
disrespecting the US or the American people. We were just sending
an SOS signal so that something would be done about the dangers of
being located right next to a base. It has been three years since
the helicopter crash (TN: an incident in which a US Marine
helicopter crashed into an OIU building), and nothing has changed."

Dean of the University of the Ryukyus Graduate School of Law Tetsumi
Takara observed that "(the displaying of the flag) was an act of
symbolic speech. Freedom of expression is a right that supports
freedom of learning, so if a university regulates (expression), it
will end up wringing its own neck."


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