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Cablegate: Japanese Morning Press Highlights 09/25/07

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Prime Minister's weekend schedule: Still in hospital but gave news
conference on Monday

Fukuda elected LDP president:
1) Newly elected LDP President Fukuda picks four top party
executives, three from old-guard wing of the party: Ibuki, Nikai,
and Koga
2) Ibuki comes in as LDP secretary general with unresolved issue of
his exorbitant office expenses
3) Outgoing Prime Minister Abe gives apologetic news conference from
hospital, cites health reason for his sudden resignation
4) Opposition Democratic Party of Japan will not be any easier on
Fukuda in the Diet than they were with Abe, with clashes on taxes,
pensions, anti-terror law
5) Ruling camp is already panicky about possibility of Lower House
election being forced on them by combative opposition that commands
majority in Upper House

Anti-terrorism special measures law saga:
6) Fukuda to present new anti-terror bill to extra Diet session
replacing expiring law
7) Diet may have to be greatly extended is the new anti-terror bill
can be passed by Lower House override
8) US Secretary Rice in meeting with Foreign Minster Machimura in
New York hopes to see MSDF oil services in the Indian Ocean continue

9) Afghan President Karzai in New York meeting with Machimura makes
pitch for continued MSDF service in Indian Ocean
10) MSDF oil supplied for Afghan campaign may have been diverted for
Iraq war use
11) US Navy captain tells Asahi that his MSDF refueled ship was used
for Iraq campaign, too
12) Defense Ministry admits fuel actually supplied by MSDF to Kitty
Hawk in Indian Ocean in 2003 was 800,000 gallons, four times amount
reported earlier
13) DPJ Secretary General Hatoyama to pursue government for
allegedly allowing MSDF supplied oil to be diverted for use in Iraq
14) DPJ's Hatoyama expects US Embassy to respond soon with promised

15) US Navy nuclear-powered carrier George Washington will arrive at
Yokosuka next year on Aug. 19


1) Fukuda appoints faction leaders, Ibuki, Tanigaki, Nikai, and Koga
to LDP executive posts, with Machimura named chief cabinet


ASAHI (Top Play) (Excerpts)
September 25, 2007

Newly elected Liberal Democratic Party President Yasuo Fukuda
yesterday appointed Education, Science and Technology Minister
Bunmei Ibuki, 69, as the party's secretary general and former
Finance Minister Sadakazu Tanigaki, 62, as policy research council
chairman. He also decided to keep General Council Chairman Toshihiro
Nikai, 68, in his post, and named former Secretary General Makoto
Koga, 67, as first chairman of the election committee under the

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direct control of the party president. Fukuda has put up a line-up
strong enough to face policy debate with the opposition camp, which
has control of the House of Councillors, by giving the four
executive posts to the faction leaders and bringing forth Ibuki and
Tanigaki, who are reputably expert on policymaking. Fukuda has also
decided to tap Foreign Minister Nobutaka Machimura as chief cabinet
secretary in a new Fukuda cabinet to be inaugurated today.


Fukuda initially planned to appoint Koga as General Council
chairman. But since Koga himself desired to assume a post
responsible for election strategy, Fukuda upgraded the post of
director general of the Election Strategy Bureau to that of election
committee chairman, placing it on a par with the three executive

Fukuda reappointed Diet Affairs Committee Chairman Tadamori Oshima
(Komura faction) and Deputy Secretary General Hiroyuki Hosoda
(Machimura faction) to their respective posts.

The key party appointments were approved in an extraordinary session
of the General Council yesterday.

Those appointed to the four party executive positions were all
faction leaders who supported Fukuda in the party presidential race.
All members of the Tanigaki and Nikai factions are said to have
voted for Fukuda, but many members of the Ibuki faction cast their
votes for Aso. Given this, the appointment of Ibuki as secretary
general surprised a number of party members.

Secretary General Ibuki said in a press conference yesterday: "There

is no magic for the party to immediately regain public support. We
are determined to steadily implement policies and give explanations
to the people in a modest manner."

Fukuda will be named the 91st prime minister through a Diet vote
today and then launch his cabinet tonight.

Changes in cabinet ministers are expected to be at a small scale
because the Diet is in session. Some suggest appointing Defense
Minister Komura to succeed Foreign Minister Machimura.

Some suggest Defense Minister Komura be reappointed to his post. But
others propose appointing former Defense Agency Director General
Shigeru Ishiba (Tsushima faction) if Komura becomes foreign
minister. As a successor to Education Minister Ibuki, an idea of
naming Upper House member Seiko Hashimoto (Machimura faction), who
served as election campaign office head for Fukuda, is floating.

2) New LDP Secretary General Ibuki: Criticism over high amount of
office expenses declared by his office; Did Fukuda determine there
is no problem?

YOMIURI (Page 2) (Full)
September 25, 2007

Bunmei Ibuki, who yesterday took office as the Liberal Democratic
Party's (LDP) secretary general, and Toshihiro Nikai, who took
office as General Council chairman, came under fire for their
unclear handling of political funds. New LDP President Fukuda
appears to have decided to pick them, judging, based on their
explanations and other information, that there would be no problem.

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A high amount of office expenses reported by Ibuki's political funds
management body was pursued in the Diet session this year. The
body's main office was located in the rent-free Diet Members' Office
Building. Nevertheless, the body entered 33.35 million yen as office
expenses for 2006. Ibuki's office explained that rents for three
offices located in Tokyo and Kyoto, fees for parking lots and lease
payments for PCs totaled approximately 20 million yen.

Ibuki during a press conference yesterday stressed that the body's
handling of office expenses was proper in compliance with the
Political Funds Control Law. He noted, "The law was revised in 1994
with the aim of making political funds control bodies handle both
incoming and outgoing political funds."

It was learned that the LDP branch headed by Nikai and his
supporters' association failed to report in its political funds
report that its office was provided rent-free.

3) "Deterioration in my physical condition is the major reason for
my resignation," says Prime Minister Abe in press conference held at
hospital: Apologizes for turmoil his resignation has caused

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Page 1) (Full)
September 25, 2007

Commenting on his resignation announcement, Prime Minister Shinzo
Abe in a press conference held on the afternoon of Sept. 24 at Keio
University Hospital (Shinanomachi, Tokyo), where he is receiving
treatment, apologized that his abrupt resignation has paralyzed the
government. He noted, "I announced my resignation at the worst time
-- shortly after making a policy speech."

Regarding the reason why he has decided to step down, Abe revealed
that his health condition was the major reason, saying, "My physical
condition has continued to deteriorate over the past month and I
felt I have reached my limits. I concluded that I could no longer
fulfill my responsibilities as prime minister."

As reasons for his decision to quit, Abe in a press conference on
the 12th cited the deadlock in the continuation of the Maritime
Self-Defense Force's refueling operation in the Indian Ocean. He did
not refer to his heath.

Referring to this, he explained, "I thought the prime minister
should not reveal his physical condition while in office."

Concerning reasons why he did not appoint an acting prime minister,
Abe noted, "I did not do so, based on the judgment reached from the
legal perspective of whether not appointing an acting prime minister
would cause trouble." Regarding his future political activities, he
revealed his intention to run in the next Lower House election,
denying the possibility of resigning as a lawmaker. He said, "I
would like to continue my efforts as a legislator."

In response to some media reports that former Secretary General Taro
Aso, who ran in the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) presidential
election, forced him to step down, Abe said, "There was no coup."

4) DPJ to heighten their confrontation with government with focus on
consumption tax, pension issues

MAINICHI (Page 2) (Excerpts)

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September 24, 2007

Yasuo Fukuda has expressed his readiness to cooperate with the
opposition. However, opposition parties, such as the Democratic
Party of Japan (DPJ or Minshuto), are set to heighten their
confrontation with the government and the ruling camp, by focusing
on wasteful spending of revenues from the consumption tax, pension
premium funds and tax money in order to play up differences with the
government and the ruling parties. They intend to press the
government and the ruling bloc with the adoption in the Upper House
during the extraordinary session policies proposals they made during
the Upper House campaign, including a bill prohibiting the diversion
of pension premium funds. They will also adopt a strategy of
realizing a dissolution of the Lower House and a general election in
the form of cornering the new administration.

Regarding Fukda's call for talks with the DPJ, DPJ Secretary General
Yukio Hatoyama told reporters in New Hidaka Town, Hokkaido on Sept.
23, "Mr. Fukuda's thinking may look similar to ours, but essential
differences will appear sooner or later. His politics left in the
hands of bureaucrats will give away. We will pursue debate on the
front stage of the Diet." He took the position that voters supported
the DPJ through the Upper House election not for talks with the
government and the ruling parties but policies which cannot be
realized unless the DPJ takes the reins of government.

The DPJ adhered to their stance of opposing the continuation of the
Self-Defense Force's refueling operation in the Indian Ocean, which
has in the end forced Prime Minister Abe to step down. However,
since Fukuda has no intention of bulldozing his way through the Diet
over the Antiterrorism Special Measures Law as Prime Minister Abe
did, the party finds it difficult to pressurize Fukuda's
administration over this issue.

Fukuda during the Liberal Democratic Party's (LDP) presidential
election advocated policies that were close to those of the DPJ,
including a review of the Disabled Persons Self-Support Assistance.
His campaign slogan "self-support and coexistence" was exactly the
same as the DPJ's. One senior DPJ officer revealed a possible
approach to show differences with Fukuda, "Since Mr. Fukuda is close
to bureaucrats, he will not be able to eliminate wasteful spending
of tax money. He has also referred to a possible hike in the
consumption tax." To be precise, the DPJ will exercise
administrative investigation rights during the current Diet session
with an eye on the year-end budget compilation and appeal to the
public regarding how the government and the ruling camp are forcing
them to shoulder more burden by leaving wasteful sending unattended.
They will also make an issue over the overall structure of the draft
budget, such as the subsidy and special account systems, during next
year's regular Diet session. Their strategy is to vote down the
budget-related laws, thereby realizing a dissolution of the Diet and
a general election.

5) Ruling coalition concerned about next Lower House election

NIKKEI (Page 3) (Full)
September 25, 2007

Concerned about the next House of Representatives election, the
ruling parties have begun looking into the possibility of
implementing social security measures that would be generous to the
people, including a freeze on medical copayments for the elderly.

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The ruling coalition has analyzed that an increase in the
residential tax, following the suspension of the fixed-rate
across-the-board cut, was one of the reasons for its defeat in the
July Upper House election. The ruling camp appears to have
determined that its policy of calling on the public for "pain" would
bring disadvantages to it in the next Lower House election.

In discussions with the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), coalition
partner New Komeito demanded measures to decrease the burden on the
people and socioeconomic disparities, similar to Yasuo Fukuda's
campaign pledges for the LDP presidential race. It can be said that
it was easy for the LDP and New Komeito to make concessions on
policy measures for the medical burden on the elderly, reform of the
inheritance tax for small- and mid-size companies, and shortage of

The LDP gave consideration in a way to the internal situation of the
New Komeito. Since the largest opposition Democratic Party of Japan
(DPJ) has called for freezing the increase in medical copayments by
elderly, the New Komeito is alarmed about the possibility of the LDP
and DPJ taking leadership on this issue.

New Komeito leader Akihiro Ota has said that his party will play the
role of applying a brake in the ruling camp. However, in the
religious sect Soka Gakkai, which is the support body of the New
Komeito, a move calling for achievements in concrete policy measures
has increasingly become stronger. One member said: "What Ota has
said is abstract and difficult to understand."

There is a wide gap in response to the politics-money issue between
the two parties. The LDP and New Komeito, in their discussion on
forming a coalition government, has reached on an agreement that
politicians would be required to attach receipts to their fund
reports every time costing one yen or more. However since the New
Komeito accepted the LDP's assertion that the contents of receipts
would not be made public, there will be little change in the

6) Fukuda eyes submitting new antiterrorism legislation to current
Diet session; Aso wants to enact legislation in current Diet

MAINICHI (Top Play) (Lead paragraph)
September 22, 2007

Former Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasuo Fukuda and Liberal Democratic
Party (LDP) Secretary General Taro Aso, who are now running in the
LDP presidential election, attended on Friday a panel discussion at
the Japan National Press Club. At the discussion, Fukuda revealed a
policy of submitting to the current Diet session alternative
legislation to the Antiterrorism Special Measures Law so that the
Maritime Self-Defense Force would be able to continue its refueling
mission in the Indian Ocean. He stated: "We have no choice but to
consider new legislation. If so, we will present it to the current
extraordinary session." Aso also expressed his intention that the
new legislation should be enacted at least in the ongoing session.
He said: "If extending the (Antiterrorism Law) is difficult, new
legislation (will be needed). The legislation should be enacted at
least in the present Diet session."

7) Lengthy extension of current Diet session unavoidable; Priority
on passage of new antiterrorism legislation may affect budget

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compilation, next Lower House election

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Excerpts)
September 22, 2007

Former Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasuo Fukuda and Liberal Democratic
Party (LDP) Secretary General Taro Aso, candidates for the ongoing
LDP presidential race, clarified on Sept. 21 their policy of aiming
to enact alternative legislation to the Antiterrorism Special
Measures Law during the current extraordinary session of the Diet.
With this, the outlook is that a lengthy extension of the extra
session, which is set to run until Nov. 10, will be inevitable. The
government and the LDP are considering exercising Article 59 of the
Constitution that stipulates failure by the House of Councillors to
take final action within 60 days after receipt of a bill passed by
the House of Representatives, time in recess excepted, may be
determined by the House of Representatives to constitute a rejection
of the said bill by the House of Councillors. The reason for the
Diet extension is that if the government submits the new legislation
in early October, it would be difficult to enact it during the
ongoing Diet session.

Contrary to the determination by Fukuda and Aso, however, the main
opposition Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) has expressed its
opposition to the new legislation that would allow the Maritime
Self-Defense Force to continue its refueling operation in the Indian
Ocean. Therefore, it is absolutely necessary to extend the extra
session to secure time schedule for discussions and an option for
re-passage of the legislation. Article 2 of the Diet Law writes that
an ordinary session shall be annually convoked in January as a rule.
If follows the precedents that at least one day should be open
between extra and ordinary sessions, it will be possible to extend
the extra session until Jan. 29 at the longest.

Since it is allowed to extend an extra session twice, the government
and LDP appear to be looking for ways to extend the session until
late January, as well as to extend again after watching what action
the DPJ will take, after extending once until early December.

The question is compilation of budget for next fiscal year. It is
possible to compile a budget while the Diet is in session, but it
takes more time than doing it while the Diet is closed as cabinet
ministers have to spent time to reply questions. If the government
puts priority on the enacting of the new legislation that would
allow the MSDF to continue its mission in the Indian Ocean, the
compilation of state budget for next fiscal might be carried over to
next year.

8) In meeting with Machimura, Rice expresses hope for extension of
refueling mission, reiterates consideration of abduction issue in
dealing with North Korea

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Page 1) (Full)
September 29, 2007

Yasunori Ishikawa, New York

Foreign Minister Nobutaka Machimura met United States Secretary of
State Condoleezza Rice in New York for about 25 minutes on the
afternoon of Sept. 22. In reference to the United Nations Security
Council resolution expressing appreciation for the countries
participating in maritime interdiction operation (MIO) by the

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coalition of the willing in the Indian Ocean, Rice expressed her
hopes for an extension of the Antiterrorism Special Measures Law (to
enable the Maritime Self-Defense Force to continue its refueling
mission). According to informed sources, Rice said: "The resolution
is designed to clearly express the international community's
perception that the continuation of the operations is necessary. I
expect the resolution will help (Japan) (to extend the law)."

Machimura replied: "We are determined to make utmost efforts to
extend the law while doing our best to solicit cooperation from the
opposition camp."

On North Korea's nuclear weapons program, Rice reiterated that the
US would give consideration to the issue of North Korea's past
abductions of Japanese nationals in determining whether it should
delist North Korea as a state sponsor of terrorism, remarking: "We
will not sacrifice Japan-US relations." Rice and Machimura also
agreed that the two countries will cooperate in the process of
disabling its nuclear facilities.

Machimura also met with Afghanistan President Karzai, UN Secretary
General Ban Ki-moon, and Iranian Foreign Minister Mottaki,

9) Machimura to play up Japan's utmost efforts for continued MSDF
refueling operations in talks with leaders of concerned countries on
sidelines of UNGA

YOMIURI (Page 4) (Abridged slightly)
September 23, 2007

Yuichi Suzuki, New York

Foreign Minister Nobutaka Machimura arrived in New York on the
morning of Sept. 22 (late at night of Sept. 22, Japan time) to
attend the UN General Assembly. Later in the day, he is scheduled to
hold separate meetings with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon,
Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai, and US Secretary of State
Condoleezza Rice. Machimura intends to extract from them positive
evaluations of the Maritime Self-Defense Force's refueling
operations in the Indian Ocean and comments requesting an extension
of the MSDF mission in a bid to help persuade the major opposition
Democratic Party of Japan (Minshuto or DPJ), which has been opposed
to the continuation of the refueling operations.

Machimura is also scheduled to announce Japan's continued grant aid
to the Air Self-Defense Force's airlift operation and projects to
improve infrastructure in a cabinet-level meeting on Afghanistan to
be held at the UN headquarters. In the Sept. 23 cabinet-level
meeting on Afghanistan, he is expected to announce Japan's
determination to make utmost efforts to continue the MSDF refueling
operations to root out terrorists in Afghanistan, a breeding ground
for terrorists.

Earlier, the UN Security Council adopted a resolution including
words of appreciation for the maritime interdiction operations, in
which the MSDF is taking part. Following this, Machimura intends to
obtain "seals of approval" from the UN secretary-general and the
Afghanistan president for continued MSDF refueling operations to
send a strong message to the general public and the DPJ.

The foreign minister, who already cast an absentee vote in the LDP

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presidential election, is scheduled to return home on the afternoon
of Sept. 24.

10) Oil supplied by MSDF to US warship suspected of being diverted
for use in Iraq war

ASAHI (Page 1) (Full)
September 22, 2007

Questioned about a Maritime Self-Defense Force (MSDF) supply ship
having directly supplied fuel to the US Navy carrier Kitty Hawk on
Feb. 2003 prior to the start of the Iraq war, the Ministry of
Defense (MOD) at first explained in a Diet reply that the amount
supplied was 200,000 gallons (760 kiloliters), but a spokesman later
corrected it to fuel volume of 80,000 gallons (3030 kiloliters). It
has been discovered that the carrier, after being refueled, entered
the Persian Gulf and became engaged in the campaign against Iraq.
The possibility is strong that fuel provided by Japan was used for a
purpose other than that set by the Anti-Terrorism Special Measures

The issue was exposed at the time when Rear Admiral William A
Moffett returned to Yokosuka with the Fifth Fleet led by the
flagship Kitty Hawk in May 2003. Moffett stated that the carrier had
directly been refueled by an MSDF supply ship. At the time, then
Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasuo Fukuda told reporters: "The Kitty Hawk
consumes 200,000 gallons of fuel in a day. (The fuel supplied by the
MSDF ship) would be consumed immediately. It is inconceivable that
it was used in connection with Iraq." But his explanation clashes
with the corrected figure of 800,000 gallons.

MOD at a press conference on Sept. 21 admitted the mistake, with
director of international cooperation division Oka saying, "There
was a mistake in inputting the data at the time it was tallied at
Maritime Staff Command." He explained that the US was checking to
see if the fuel was used in the Iraq war. MOD contended that the
fuel was used for the anti-terror campaign since that had been an
exchange of notes with the US confirming the purpose of refueling US
warships was for the anti-terror campaign. But at the press
conference, the spokesman added that "it could not be ascertained in
detail" where the fuel was used once it was supplied.

Regarding indirect refueling, the citizens' group Peace Depot on
Sept. 20 discovered from ships' logs and other documents obtained
under the US Freedom of Information Act that the US supply ship
Pecos was fueled by an MSDF supply ship on Feb. 25, 2003. The US
Navy carrier Kitty Hawk then was refueled the same day and directly
entered the Persian Gulf to participate in the Iraq war. An
influential defense-policy specialist in the Liberal Democratic
Party revealed to the Asahi Shimbun: "It is as the civic group said.
It cannot be ruled out that the fuel supplied by Japan was possibly
used in the Iraq war." Several MOD sources also confirmed, "There is
concern that Japan's fuel was diverted for operations related to
Iraq." The Anti-Terrorism Special Measures Law, which was enacted in
order to provide logistical support for the anti-terrorist
operations near Afghanistan, has a provision that states the purpose
of the anti-terrorist operations in the Indian Ocean is "to assist
the international community in stopping and eliminating
international terrorism." Iraq operations are outside the scope of
this law.

11) Former US Navy captain affirms MSDF provided fuel in 2005 to his

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ship that was engaged in the Iraq campaign

ASAHI (Top play) (Full)
Eve., September 22, 2007

By Masato Tainaka

A US Navy captain has affirmed that a ship he once commanded was
directly refueled by a Maritime Self-Defense Force (MSDF) supply
ship in the Indian Ocean when his vessel was not only engaged in
anti-terrorist operations near Afghanistan, making such refueling
appropriated under Japan's Anti-terrorism Special Measures Law, but
also was engaged in the Iraq campaign, which would place such
refueling outside the scope of the law. The former ship captain
pointed out that it was common US military practice for ships to be
involved in a number of operations. His testimony about the actual
situation conflicts with explanations of the Japanese government
that refueling operations were limited only to anti-terror purposes.

Captain Ronald Horton (47), who now commands the US Navy carrier
Enterprise that is deployed to the Persian Gulf, responded recently
to an interview on board his ship. According to the captain, he
commanded in 2005 a US military landing craft, the USS Juneau
(LDP-10), which was home-ported at the US Navy base at Sasebo. He
said: "At the time, we received refueling from supply ships more
frequently than now. The Japanese contribution was immeasurable."
According to the captain's explanation and US Navy documents, the
USS Juneau in 2005 was deployed as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom
(OIF) to the northern part of the Persian Gulf in order to land in
Iraq US Marines who had been stationed in Okinawa. At the time, the
vessel reportedly received refueling and provisions three times from
an MSDF supply ship.

The USS Juneau at the time also was folded into Operation Enduring
Freedom (OEF), a part of war on terror that began in Oct. 2001 under
the US lead to carry out maritime interdiction operations (MIO) to
stop movements of terrorist group members and their weapons on the
high seas. Because the timing of these operations was never clearly
differentiated, it seems to have been difficult to determine in
which of the two operations the fuel from the MSDF supply ship was

The Anti-Terrorism Special Measures Law limits the activities of the
MSDF to logistical support to US warships and those of other
countries carrying out anti-terror operations in the area near
Afghanistan. However, with the spreading of the activities of the
international terrorist group al-Qaeda from the Afghanistan area to
within Iraq, the US Navy deployed simultaneously ships to cover both
the anti-terror and Iraqi campaigns. The US Navy warships in the
fleet of the Enterprise or other carriers are now carrying out
simultaneously anti-terror and Iraqi campaigns inside the Persian
Gulf. The special measures law did not assume that US warships
carrying out several tactical operations in a series of marine
maneuvers would be serviced with supplies from MSDF ships. The
concept for the area receiving support activities in 2001, when the
law was enacted, did not match the reality of the situation.

From last August to today, warships of US, UK and other countries
have been operating in three oceanic areas: CTF-150 in strategic
waters outside the Persian Gulf; CTF-152 in the southern part of the
Persian Gulf; and CTF-158 in the northern part. The MSDF insists it

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supplies only those US vessels engaged in CT-150 operations, and
that it did not supply fuel to any US warship engaged in operations
toward Iraq.

12) Defense Ministry corrects amount of ship-to-ship fuel to 800,000
gallons -- four times the volume mentioned in Diet reply in 2003

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Page 3) (Excerpts)
September 22, 2007

In May 2003, then Defense Agency Director-General Shigeru Ishiba
told the Upper House Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee that the
Maritime Self-Defense Force's supply vessel Tokiwa had indirectly
provided 200,000 gallons of fuel to the USS Kitty Hawk in Feb. 2003
under the Antiterrorism Special Measures Law. In this connection,
the Defense Ministry yesterday corrected the amount of fuel provided
by the Tokiwa to 800,000 gallons, saying the government had made a

Back in 2003, the Tokiwa was suspected to have fueled the Kitty Hawk
in deviation from the Antiterrorism Law since the Kitty Hawk was
taking part in the Iraq war. But the government explained that the
aircraft carrier consumed 200,000 gallons a day and that the fuel
provided by Japan was not used for the anti-Iraq operation.

The main opposition Democratic Party of Japan (Minshuto or DPJ) has
been opposed to the law's extension, citing a lack of information.
Extending the law will now become even more difficult. According to
the Defense Ministry, the Maritime Staff Office mistook the amount
of fuel for another vessel in storing data. The US supply vessel
fueled by the Tokiwa provided the Kitty Hawk with 800,000 tons of
fuel on the same day. All the fuel from the Tokiwa might have been
indirectly provided to the Kitty Hawk.

The Defense Ministry has queried the US government about the Kitty
Hawk's actions. The ministry has indicated that there was no problem
with the Tokiwa's provision of fuel, saying the notes exchanged with
the US limit Japan's fuel strictly to the antiterrorism operation
and that such was confirmed by the receiving vessel in the Indian
Ocean, as well.

13) DPJ's Hatoyama: "Japanese oil was used in Iraq war," reiterating
opposition to extension of MSDF refueling mission

MAINICHI (Page 3) (Full)
September 23, 2007

Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) Secretary General Yukio Hatoyama
renewed his opposition to an extension of the refueling mission
being carried out by the Maritime Self-Defense Force's (MSDF) based
on the Antiterrorism Special Measures Law yesterday. In a press
conference in Tomakomai, Hokkaido, Hatoyama said: "Suspicions are
growing that Japanese fuel provided to be used in the war in
Afghanistan has been used in the Iraq war. The public will naturally
react to the government's cooperation in the war while telling a

The main opposition party intends to question the government
regarding the possible linkage between the refueling operation and
the Iraq war by invoking its administrative investigation right.
Hatoyama said: "The environment has been arranged to prove it is
proper for us to oppose the extension of the MSDF refueling

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In the press conference, Hatoyama also said that Administrative
Defense Vice Minister Kohei Masuda had asked him to support the
government's plan to extend the mission. Hatoyama quoted Masuda as
saying: "Since Japan has said it would provide oil for Afghanistan,
it is inconceivable that US warships that have received fuel from
the MSDF have used it for other purposes."

14) Hatoyama reveals plan to grill government in Diet over corrected
refueling amount

YOMIURI (Page 4) (Full)
September 23, 2007

Democratic Party of Japan (Minshuto or DPJ) Secretary-General Yukio
Hatoyama held a press conference in Tomakomai City, Hokkaido, on
Set. 22. In it, touching on the Defense Ministry's correction of the
amount of fuel provided to a US refueling vessel in the Indian
Ocean, Hatoyama said: "The US vessels that received fuel (from the
MSDF) in the name of the war on terrorism were suspected to have
been used in the war in Iraq. (The Defense Ministry's correction)
has made it clear that the allegation was probably a fact." He thus
indicated that the largest opposition party would grill the
government on the issue in the ongoing extraordinary Diet session.

15) George Washington to arrive at Yokosuka base on Aug. 19, 2008

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Page 3) (Abridged slightly)
September 25, 2007

The USS George Washington, a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, is
expected to arrive at the US Yokosuka Naval Base on Aug. 19, 2008,
its new home port, according to Rear Adm. Richard Wren, the
commander of the Japan-based aircraft carrier USS Kitty Hawk's
battle group, in a press conference on Sept. 21.

According to Rear Adm. Wren, the Kitty Hawk will leave the Yokosuka
base in May 2008, and hold a ceremony at the Pearl Harbor base in
Hawaii to hand over duties to the George Washington. Part of the
crewmembers of the two vessels will also be replaced.

Meanwhile, some 1,000 metropolitan area residents, mostly members of
civic groups, have filed a class-action lawsuit seeking a
provisional injunction to halt the construction work at the Yokosuka
base, saying a nuclear accident would cause extensive damage to the
area. Attention is focused on a court decision.


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