Cablegate: Daily Summary of Japanese Press 08/14/07

DE RUEHKO #3736/01 2260800
P 140800Z AUG 07





E.O. 12958: N/A



(1) US proposes disclosing sensitive information in unprecedented
move, attaching importance to bilateral relationship of alliance;
Ambassador Schieffer expresses strong expectations of extension of
Antiterrorism Special Measures Law

(2) Exchange of questions and answers with US Ambassador to Japan
Schieffer: Classified info provided to opposition party in Australia
as well; F-35 could be candidate for Japan's next-generation
mainstay fighter

(3) Prime minister approves replacement of Vice Defense Minister

(4) Studies of DPJ: Upper House -- the so-called Seat of Common
Sense -- to become battle field; Ozawa to eliminate logrolling
between ruling and opposition camps

(5) Interview with LDP Deputy Secretary-General Nobuteru Ishihara:
Decisions based on likes and dislikes will not get LDP through

(6) Government arranging meeting on Aug. 23 between Prime Minister
Abe and family members of the late Justice Pal


(1) US proposes disclosing sensitive information in unprecedented
move, attaching importance to bilateral relationship of alliance;
Ambassador Schieffer expresses strong expectations of extension of
Antiterrorism Special Measures Law

NIKKEI (Page 3) (Full)
August 14, 2007

Editorial board member Tsuyoshi Sunohara

In an interview to the Nikkei Shimbun yesterday, US Ambassador to
Japan Schieffer stressed that disclosing sensitive information to
the opposition Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ or Minshuto) in
connection with an extension of the Antiterrorism Special Measures
Law is not unusual. However, for the US government to use a
diplomatic channel to convey classified information collected by the
Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) directly to the opposition camp,
without going through the Japanese government, is unprecedented in
the more-than-30-year history of the bilateral alliance. Behind this
approach of the US lies the honeymoon-like relationship established
during the Bush-Koizumi era and the tight budgetary situation of the
Bush administration, which continues to make the "war on terrorism"
its major policy slogan.

Ambassador Schieffer during the meeting once again stressed the
importance of the Antiterrorism Special Measures Law, the grounds
for Japan dispatching Maritime Self-Defense Force's (MSDF) vessels
to the Indian Ocean near Afghanistan. One can say that his appeal
for Japan's support for an extension of the law transcended either
the ruling or the opposition camp, if Japan considers the alliance
with the US as its national policy.

For the Bush administration, now suffering from low approval ratings
due to the drawn out aftermath of the Iraq War, the defeat of the

TOKYO 00003736 002 OF 008

Taliban regime in Afghanistan in the operation it launched following
the 2001 terrorist attacks on the US has been one of its few
achievements. Japan, having firmly supported the US in the campaigns
against Afghanistan and Iraq, is also one of the US' few brothers in

If Japan pulls out of the refueling operations for vessels of
various countries in the Indian Ocean, the Bush administration would
lose face in the international community. There is also a
possibility of it taking a hard hit in domestic politics, because
such a development could be taken as another case of the table
having been turned for the Republican president, whose party is
suffering a setback in the presidential election campaign.

Behind Ambassador Schieffer's positive stance toward disclosing
sensitive information to Japan's opposition party also lies the
belief that the will of the people shown in the Upper House election
this time rejected the Koizumi policy of always giving priority to
the US. Regarding the future image of the Japan-US alliance, which
is said to have entered the best period in postwar decades during
the Koizumi administration, the ambassador previously had noted, "I
want to strengthen the alliance so that it can be managed at the
organization-to-organization level or state-to-state level, instead
of depending on (the relations of) specific individuals." As a
concrete measure to that end, Schieffer cited intelligence sharing.

The success or failure of decisions made as he noted will be watched
closely not only by both governments but also neighboring countries
for they will be seen as a test auguring whether Japan and the US
can establish an alliance that does not rely on specific

(2) Exchange of questions and answers with US Ambassador to Japan
Schieffer: Classified info provided to opposition party in Australia
as well; F-35 could be candidate for Japan's next-generation
mainstay fighter

NIKKEI (Page 3) (Full)
August 14, 2007

-- What did you want to convey to the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ
or Minshuto) regarding the issue of an extension of the
Antiterrorism Special Measures Law?

"I told Mr. Ozawa that the US would disclose as much information as
possible. Preparations are being made for a meeting to disclose and
explain classified information (on the Afghan situation) to Japanese
lawmakers, including not only Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) members
but also DPJ members.

"I will meet with key government officials, including President Bush
and Secretary of State Rice in Washington in the first week of
September. If possible, I would like to hold that meeting through
the second week into the third week in September after those
meetings in Washington."

-- Do you intend to continue contacts with the DPJ leadership?

"I am ready to meet with them whenever they want. I have already met
with former heads Katsuya Okada and Seiji Maehara. It is not
unprecedented for the US to disclose classified information to
opposition parties. We have done a similar thing in Australia as

TOKYO 00003736 003 OF 008

well. It is necessary for concerned parties to have sufficient
information and make decisions based on that. We want to help that

-- What would be the US response in the event of a failure of
efforts to extend the law due to opposition from the DPJ?

"Should that occur, Japan would send a very backward-looking message
to the international community. I do hope such a thing will not

-- How do you analyze the crushing defeat of the LDP in the July
Upper House election?

"I take it as something which the people of Japan have decided on.
One thing I can say is that foreign policy did not take center stage
of the election campaign. The pension fiasco and scandals involving
cabinet ministers were major campaign issues."

-- Japan is now considering state-of-the-art F-22 Raptor fighters to
serve as the Air-Self Defense Force's next-generation mainstay
fighter. What is your view on that?

"The US Congress prohibits the exports of F-22 Raptor fighters not
only to Japan but also to Britain, Australia and members of the
North Atlantic Treaty Organizations (NATO). Japan is no way the only
country to which the exports of F-22 fighters are prohibited. We
have other high-quality fighters, such as the F-35 and the F-18. I
would like Japan to reach a decision after giving it full

(3) Prime minister approves replacement of Vice Defense Minister

SANKEI (Page 3) (Slightly abridged)
August 14, 2007

Defense Minister Yuriko Koike's decision to replace Vice Defense
Minister Takemasa Moriya with Tetsuya Nishikawa, director general of
the defense minister's secretariat, after the reshuffle of the
cabinet planned for Aug. 27 was made without consulting the Prime
Minister's Office (Kantei), upsetting Cabinet Secretary Yasuhisa
Shiozaki. For a while, the issue festered, but Prime Minister Shinzo
Abe made the final decision approving Koike's decision, after a
meeting between the two. The prime minister took seriously a series
of incidents involving the Defense Ministry, such as the leaking of
classified information on the Aegis system.

Direct negotiations with prime minister

Shortly after noon yesterday, Koike visited the Prime Minister's
Official Residence (Kantei) and exchanged verbal jabs with Shiozaki
for more than one hour.

According to informed sources about the Koike-Shiozaki meeting,
Koike, even going so far as to indicate her intention to resign,
asked for his understanding about the replacement of Moriya. She
also asked Shiozaki to hold a meeting on Kantei personnel action,
joined by Shiozaki and the deputy chief cabinet secretaries prior to
a cabinet meeting tomorrow.

Koike: Prime Minister Abe approved the plan to appoint Mr. Nishikawa

TOKYO 00003736 004 OF 008

as vice minister. I have determination to do so and will convey it
to the prime minister.

Shiozaki: Although the media reported on the personnel change, we
were not informed of it in advance. The personnel decision-making
system did not properly function.

After expressing his displeasure, Shiozaki rejected Koike's

Several minutes after Koike left the Kantei, Moriya visited Prime
Minister Abe. The Abe-Moriya meeting lasted for nearly one hour.

In the evening, Koike visited the Kantei again and met with the
prime minister for about 20 minutes. She stressed the importance of
replacing Moriya, saying; "The need of strengthening the nation's
information-safeguard system is one reason for my call for replacing
Mr. Moriya," underscoring the seriousness of the series of cases of
information leaks from the Defense Ministry. Some persons take the
view that Washington, out of concern about a recurrence of such
leakage incidents, tacitly asked the government to replace Moriya.
The prime minister approved of the appointment of Nishikawa, a
former National Police Agency official, to succeed Moriya.

Distrust in Moriya

Although Koike cited information safeguards as the main reason for
the replacement decision, she reportedly has been distrustful of
Moriya, since she served as state minister in charge of Okinawa,
because of his handling of US military base issues.

Koike, as state minister in charge of Okinawa, succeeded in getting
the government to drop a decision to abolish a project worth 100
billion yen to develop the northern part of Okinawa over the decade.
Moriya, though, was skeptical of Koike's move. It has been reported
that Moriya was so eager to introduce a system to provide local
communities with subsidies in accordance with the degree of their
cooperation toward US force realignment plans that the Okinawa
prefectural government regarded the presence of Moriya as the main
cause for the stagnation of the base issue.

It has also been reported that Koike, in a bid to promote the base
issue upon obtaining understanding from local communities concerned,
had unofficially conveyed to Okinawa Governor Hirokazu Nakaima and
others her willingness to replace the vice minister, making Moriya
angry. The replacement plan came out of the blue for Moriya. He
angrily said on Aug. 7: "It must be impossible for the minister, who
came into office just one month ago, to draw up (a personnel action
plan)." A senior ministry official also said: "Ms. Koike has turned
the entire ministry against her."

Some observers point out a "delicate relationship between Koike and
Shiozaki" as a factor that complicated the issue the vice minister's
post. Last year, when Koike was a special advisor in charge of
national security to the prime minister, Koike and Shiozaki remained
at odds over the concept of creating a Japanese-version national
security council (NSC).

The current top priority issue for the Defense Ministry is to extend
the Antiterrorism Special Measures Law, which is to expire Nov. 1.
President Ichiro Ozawa of the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ), which
has now control of the House of Councillors, remains opposed to the

TOKYO 00003736 005 OF 008

government's extension plan. The row over the top defense
executive's post is likely to have some impact on future Diet

(4) Studies of DPJ: Upper House -- the so-called Seat of Common
Sense -- to become battle field; Ozawa to eliminate logrolling
between ruling and opposition camps

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
August 14, 2007

Minshuto (DPJ or Democratic Party of Japan), which won a landslide
victory in the July House of Councillors election, is in a hurry to
make its move to grab the reins of government. President Ichiro
Ozawa intends to stress confrontation as the party's approach to the
ruling coalition in the Upper House, where his party now has the
largest force. He plans to unsettle the administration of Prime
Minister Shinzo Abe by submitting many bills to the chamber.
However, his party's ability to hold the reins of government will be
put to the test in the future. Can the DPJ, which used to be
ridiculed as being a motley collection of politicians from different
parties, band together in both will soon be tested.

In a general meeting of all lawmakers on Aug. 7, the first day of
the extraordinary Diet session, Ozawa used the word "responsibility"
nine times in a five-minute speech. Regarding the contents of such
responsibility, he emphasized: "We will respond in a visible way to
what we have asserted. Reaching decisions by collusion between the
ruling and opposition camps was a method used in the good old days
of politics."

It is often pointed out that the Upper House has continued the 1995
political arrangement of cozy relations between the ruling and
opposition parties. There were many cases, in which the opposition
camp agreed to hold consultations on schedules, as well as to take
votes on bills based on the principle that the so-called Seat of
Common Sense does not take actions that would bring about political
change, although it might confront the ruling camp in the Lower

The parliamentary league of the DPJ and Shin-Ryokufuukai in the
Upper House increased its members from the pre-election strength of
83 to 112 (as of Aug. 13), exceeding the number of LDP lawmakers. It
is possible for the opposition to kill bills with its majority in
the chamber.

On July 31, Ozawa first took action to form a roster of the party's
new key executives, asking Upper House Chairman Azuma Koshiishi to
stay on in his current post. LDP Upper House Chairman Mikio Aoki,
with whom Koshiishi has close ties, has already announced his
intention to step down from his post. The group of lawmakers hailing
from the former Democratic Socialist Party, which had tried to
recommend Masayuki Naoshima as chairman, stopped their action,
thinking that it would unwise to challenge Koshiishi. Ozawa then
entrusted Koshiishi with the selections of Upper House executives.

In fact, there was a move to recommend Keiko Chiba, a member of the
group of lawmakers coming from the former Socialist Party, to serve
as president of the Upper House, but Satsuki Eda, a member of the
group led by Deputy President Naoto Kan, was picked as candidate for
the Upper House presidential race. Koshiishi picked a member of the
former SDP-affiliate group as secretary general, a member of the

TOKYO 00003736 006 OF 008

group-led by Secretary General Yukio Hatoyama as chairman of the
Diet Affairs Committee, a member of the group led by former
President Seiji Maehara as policy chief. Takeo Nishioka, an
Ozawa-led group member, was named chairman of the Upper House
Steering Committee.

"We will assume all committee chairman posts, including Budget
Committee chairman," said former Upper House Secretary General
Toshio Ogawa in a meeting on Aug. 10 of the full Upper House members
of the party. Ogawa received a lot of applause.

The Budget Committee chairman holds the key to pursuing the
government and ruling coalition. However, there was a view in the
DPJ that Koshiishi might give the Budget Committee chairmanship to
the LDP since his party took the Steering Committee chairman post.
The party intends to decide on the allocation of committee chairman
posts and other matters through discussions before the fall
extraordinary session convenes. If decisions are made behind the
closed door, party members will inevitably express displeasure.

Eda stated on Aug. 12: "The ruling camp thought that 70 or 80 % of
the Lower House deliberations was enough for the Upper House. We
will take sufficient time for deliberations from now on."

(5) Interview with LDP Deputy Secretary-General Nobuteru Ishihara:
Decisions based on likes and dislikes will not get LDP through

MAINICHI (Page 5) (Full)
August 14, 2007

-- A shuffling of the cabinet and Liberal Democratic Party
executives is scheduled for August 27. What is important about it?

It would be the degree to which Prime Minister Abe can steer away
from using as a standard in his selection process "whether or not we
are on friendly terms" or "whether or not I like him or her." In
selecting the current cabinet, he gathered lawmakers with whom he
got on well, and he probably also felt like rewarding those who
supported him (in the party presidential election). But now he faces
an emergency situation. He has made the decision to walk a thorny
path, so he must make cold, objective personnel choices.

-- What do you see as the main reason for the LDP's loss in the
Upper House election?

I don't think we lost because of the pension problem. Such issues as
the "politics and money" scandals, insincere attitudes and responses
of cabinet members, as symbolized by former Agricultural Minister
Norihiko Akagi's bandaged face, and a series of unforgivable
unprincipled statements put a distance between us and the Japanese
people to the point where we could not even discuss policy. The
electorate probably thought: "What is wrong with this
administration? They lack any sense of crisis-management

-- Didn't (the LDP) notice this happening during the election

(During the campaign), we felt such a reaction from audiences when
we were giving speeches. However, invisible cracks suddenly broke
open, allowing water to spill out. That was the situation.

TOKYO 00003736 007 OF 008

-- In the Upper House, the ruling and opposition parties have
switched places. How will (the LDP) get through the fall
extraordinary Diet session?

This time, the Upper House will be the main stage. As a member of
the Lower House, I am sad. In the Lower House, the ruling party has
over 300 seats. The same people who gave the LDP those seats
reversed the majority and minority parties in the Upper House.
Neither voters nor politicians know what effect this will have on
Japan's two-chamber system. Until now, both the ruling and
opposition parties have placed emphasis on decisions made in the
Lower House, but now the opposition party, which has the majority in
the Upper House, has a big responsibility.

-- Democratic Party of Japan President Ichiro Ozawa says he is
opposed to the extension of the Anti-Terrorism Special Measures

Ozawa called US Ambassador to Japan Schieffer over (to DPJ
headquarters). This is the same as when he was the deputy chair of
the LDP's Takeshita faction, for he similarly summoned Kiichi
Miyazawa (then a candidate for prime minister), Michio Watanabe, and
Hiroshi Mitsuzuka. Diplomacy to Ozawa is social. I won't go so far
as to say he is completely without manners, but he lacks courtesy.
It sounds cool when Ozawa and others talk about being the US' equal.
However there are bases in Yokota and Okinawa, and we are still
using the constitution that was written during the Occupation. We
are definitely not equals.

-- In discussions about the Anti-Terrorism Special Measures Law,
what path should the ruling party take?

There is the option of letting politics reflect the recent judgment
of the people (meaning the opposition party will resist an extension
and the law will expire). However in that case, Japan will lose the
trust of the international community. Yet if the prime minister uses
the Lower House majority to forcefully extend the law (the Lower
House can pass a law again if the Upper House rejects it), there
will definitely be those who say: "What about the will of the
people, which was expressed during the Upper House election?" If the
prime minister decides to follow through with Japan's will in the
international community, I will support him all the way.

-- The re-revision of the Political Funds Control Law is a major
focal point. How will the LDP handle this issue?

It is important to respond to the opinion of the people that the
revisions made during the regular Diet session were insufficient.
The reason that there is a lack of consensus within the LDP is
because there are practical problems.

It would be desirable if the ruling and opposition parties would
keep practical operations in mind when having discussions. However
(the path of re-revision) is up to Ozawa. If he passes amendments in
the Upper House that the LDP cannot agree to and takes a
confrontational stance, saying, "Just try and reject (the
amendments) in the Lower House," we will be forced to propose our
own amendments (to counter the DPJ).

(6) Government arranging meeting on Aug. 23 between Prime Minister
Abe and family members of the late Justice Pal

TOKYO 00003736 008 OF 008

MAINICHI (Page 2) (Full)
August 14, 2007

It was learned yesterday that in connection with Prime Minister
Shinzo Abe's upcoming trip to India, the government is now arranging
an informal meeting in Kolkata (Calcutta) on Aug. 23 between Abe and
the family members of the late Radhabinod Pal, who served as a
justice at the International Military Tribunal for the Far East's
trials of Japanese accused or war crimes during World War II,. Abe
is also looking for the possibility of having exchanges with
descendants of the late Subhas Chandra Bose, known as a champion of
Indian independence.

Twenty-five Japanese leaders were charged with Class-A war crimes.
Seven, including wartime prime minister Hideki Tojo, were executed
by hanging. Justice Pal, criticizing the way the victors tried a
defeated country, found all the defendants innocent. There is a
monument honoring him at Yasukuni Shrine.

At a Lower House plenary session last October, Abe stated: "(Japan)
is not a position to offer an objection to the trials since it
accepted them." Referring to Class-A war criminals' responsibility
for the war, he has avoided expressing his own view, just saying:
"Since there still remain various arguments as to who were
responsible for the war, it is not appropriate for the government to
decide." A government official explained the planned meeting with
the Pal family: "It will symbolize the friendly relations between
Japan and India." However, the meeting could set off China and other
countries, depending on its contents.

During the war, Subhas Chandra Bose had exchanges with Hideki Tojo
that were aimed at support for the independence of India from
Britain. He is called the champion of India's independence, and his
ashes were laid to rest in Renkouji Temple in Suginami Ward.


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