Cablegate: Daily Summary of Japanese Press 11/28/07

DE RUEHKO #5359/01 3320805
P 280805Z NOV 07





E.O. 12958: N/A



(1) Japan must return supply ship to the Indian Ocean (Part A):
Yukio Okamoto (Sankei)

(2) LDP, DPJ at loggerheads over whether Nukaga was present at
dinner with Moriya (Tokyo Shimbun)

(3) DPJ Ozawa: If Nukaga's remarks proved contrary to the facts,
Fukuda cabinet will find itself in hopeless situation (Tokyo

(4) Seiron (Opinion) column by Yasunori Sone: Ways to break
stalemate in Diet (Sankei)

(5) Can Defense Ministry start all over again? (Tokyo Shimbun)

(6) Municipal, prefectural authorities strongly object to FA-18
arrival from Iwakuni for training (Ryukyu Shimpo)

(7) Prime Minister's schedule, November 27 (Nikkei)


(1) Japan must return supply ship to the Indian Ocean (Part A):
Yukio Okamoto

SANKEI (Pop play and Page 3) (Full)
November 28, 2007

The government's new antiterrorism special measures bill cleared the
House of Representatives on Nov. 13. The House of Councillors is now
scheduled to begin deliberating the legislation at its plenary
session today with an explanation on the bill by Chief Cabinet
Secretary Nobutaka Machimura. But with the Upper House Foreign

Affairs and Defense Committee's timetable for deliberations still up
in the air, it now seems extremely difficult to enact the
legislation before the current Diet session closes on Dec. 15.

Meanwhile, the Upper House Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee
adopted yesterday afternoon a Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ or
Minshuto)-presented bill to rescind the Iraq Special Measures Law
with a majority vote backed by the DPJ and other opposition parties.
The legislation is expected to clear today's Upper House plenary
session and sent to the Lower House, where it is likely to be either
voted down or scrapped.

Against such backdrop, Sankei Shimbun received yesterday a special
contribution from Yukio Okamoto, a former adviser to the prime
minister under the Hashimoto cabinet and an international affairs
consultant, emphasizing the need for the Maritime Self-Defense
Force's refueling operation in the Indian Ocean.

Civilization's war of self-defense

Afghanistan's poverty makes one's heart ache. In this country, one
out of five children dies before reaching the age of five.
Afghanistan also produces 93 PERCENT of the opium consumed in the
world. The country used to be under the Taliban's oppressive rule,
with the country divided among many armed factions.

Having decided to make the war-ravaged country as their base,

TOKYO 00005359 002 OF 008

terrorists have spread from Afghanistan across the world. The
Taliban and al-Qaeda are recovering their influence in the country.
The international community has been making efforts to bring
stability to Afghanistan in compliance with a request of the Karzai
administration. The Democratic Party of Japan has defined such
effort as a "U.S. war of self-defense." There is no other country in
the world that says such a thing.

The basic thinking of al-Qaeda, which destroyed part of New York on
September 11, 2001, is that the world should return to the age of
the 7th century established by Prophet Muhammad. The group believes
that the civilization established by mankind over the last 13
centuries since Muhammad is an impurity and must be destroyed.

Al-Qaeda is trying to destroy the civilization of developed
countries in its entirety. This explains why there has been a spate
of terrorist attacks in Europe. (Al-Qaeda leader) Osama bin Laden
has mentioned Japan several times as a country the terrorist
organization would attack.

What is happening in Afghanistan is basically different from that in
Iraq. People find it disagreeable to refer to the U.S.-led war in
Iraq as part of "the war on terror." That is probably why France and
Germany did not send troops to Iraq. Yet the international community
equates activities in Afghanistan with the war on terror.

That is why all industrialized countries, including France and
Germany, are engaged in efforts to stabilize Afghanistan. Some 40
countries are involved in this effort. "Afghanistan" is
civilization's war on terror in order to defend itself.

Withdrawal from Indian Ocean incomprehensible

Japan has withdrawn from the war on terror for a reason that no one
in the world can understand.

Naval vessels of over 10 countries have been blocking terrorists
from freely using the Indian Ocean. The Maritime Self-Defense Force
refueled such vessels for six years in waters off the Arabian
Peninsula. The MSDF's operation in parching heat was highly praised
by the international community. But the Antiterrorism Special
Measures Law has expired, and the MSDF vessels returned to Japan on
Nov. 23. A European newspaper asked: "Has Japan returned to its old
self that brazenly forced tough military duties on other countries?"

The opposition block forced Japan to leave the international team,
arguing that the MSDF's refueling operation was fully integrated
with military actions. Their logic is incomprehensible. Vessels of
other countries are simply inspecting suspicious ships upon
obtaining consent of the flag-state government, which is patrolling,
not combating. Japan only provided fuel oil to such vessels.

If one still calls such an act as being integrated with military
actions, then providing meals to U.S. military personnel would also
be regarded as being integrated with military actions.

There is another point. The opposition camp insisted that Japan
withdraw from the Indian Ocean, saying that there was no UN
resolution. The UN adopts a resolution only when China and Russia,
which have veto rights, endorse it. Due to China's opposition, the
Security Council has yet to adopt a resolution condemning Sudan and

TOKYO 00005359 003 OF 008

Burma for their blatant violation of basic human rights.

In other words, even if Japan thinks something is right, it does not
take action unless China approves it. It is pitiful to use a
Security Council resolution as a yardstick.

The DPJ is also calling for Japan's participation in provincial
reconstruction team (PRT) activities, which are not backed by a
Security Council resolution. The DPJ's logic is hard to understand.

(2) LDP, DPJ at loggerheads over whether Nukaga was present at
dinner with Moriya

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Page 3) (Slightly abridged)
November 28, 2007

The Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) and the Democratic Party of Japan
(DPJ) plunged into an all-out war yesterday over whether Finance
Minister Fukushiro Nukaga was present at a dinner party in December
between former Vice Defense Minister Takemasa Moriya and a former
executive of defense contractor Yamada Corp.

After the DPJ pointed out in the Diet that there was evidence that
Nukaga had been present at the dinner, the LDP secretly investigated
the case to make a counterargument, hearing the circumstances
through a lawyer from those who had been at the dinner and looking
into a taxi company's chits and a recorded conversation at a study
meeting. The LDP concluded through its investigation that Nukaga
simply had no time to attend the party.

The LDP poured its energy into the investigation in an attempt to
show that DPJ members posed questions at the Diet without any
definite grounds. The main ruling party was apparently keeping in
mind the faked e-mail case. In that case, former House of
Representatives member Hisayasu Nagata of the DPJ was driven into
resignation as a Diet member over false allegations he made at the
Diet based on a faked e-mail that suggested shady financial links
between Livedoor Co. founder Takafumi Horie and the second son of
former LDP Secretary General Tsutomu Takebe. Then President Seiji
Maehara also had to step down, and the DPJ received a serious
political setback.

Upsurge of emotion

The LDP, which has been forced to go on the defensive since it
suffered a crushing defeat in the House of Councillors election in
July, wants to use the Nukaga case as an opportunity to launch a
counterattack, as in the case of the fake e-mail.

LDP Diet Affairs Committee Chairman Tadamori Oshima announced the
results of the party's investigation by holding a press conference.
There he stated: "The DPJ should fully keep in mind the lesson from
the faked e-mail problem."

An emotional high has swept across the LDP for the first time in a
long while. One member said jokingly: "I feel sorry about sending
DPJ questioners into resignation."

The DPJ decided in a meeting of the Upper House to summon Nukaga and
Moriya as sworn witnesses over their cozy ties with the defense
contractor. On this decision, a senior LDP Upper House member said:
"If the other side comes up with an unreasonable demand, we will

TOKYO 00005359 004 OF 008

accept the challenge, with the determination that it might develop
into a mudslinging match. In return, we may demand President Ichiro
Ozawa be summoned as a witness in the Diet."

On the other hand, the DPJ has also begun to take action
confidently. The Upper House Committee on Financial Affairs, greeted
by boos and hisses from the ruling camp, voted in favor of summoning
Nukaga and Moriya last night by a majority vote from the opposition
bloc. The ruling camp used to be criticized for forcible voting as
"the arrogance of power," but it has been upstaged by the opposition

It was Moriya who told the DPJ directly that Nukaga had been at the
dinner party, so it took a vote in a hasty way. According to the
special investigation squad of the Tokyo District Public Prosecutors
Office, it will soon bring in Moriya for investigation, so the DPJ
feared that it might lose a chance to summon Moriya to the Diet. A
senior DPJ Diet Affairs Committee member said: "Since the decision
was made, we believe that prosecutors will not launch a compulsory
investigation." (TN: Moriya has since been arrested.)

Emergency interview

Two hours after the press conference by the LDP, DPJ Diet Affairs
Committee Chairman Kenji Yamaoka also held a press conference, in
which he said that the information source was Moriya.

According to senior Diet Affairs Committee members of the DPJ, the
party began to secretly meet Moriya just after he mentioned the
names of Nukaga and former Defense Minister Fumio Kyuma in his
testimony at the Upper House Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee.
Through six rounds of meetings with Moriya, the opposition party
seems to have full confidence that Nukaga had been at the party with

Delivering a speech in a party of DPJ lawmakers held last night,
Deputy President Naoto Kan also said in an elated mood: "The Fukuda
cabinet might topple."

Even so, DPJ members also seem concerned about the evidence
presented by the LDP. Yamaoka took precautions to prepare against a
case in which Moriya's testimony was not true, saying: "The DPJ is
not carrying out its own investigation. It is a problem between Mr.
Moriya and Mr. Nukaga."

(3) DPJ Ozawa: If Nukaga's remarks proved contrary to the facts,
Fukuda cabinet will find itself in hopeless situation

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Page 3) (Full)
November 28, 2007

In a press conference yesterday, Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ)
President Ichiro Ozawa said: "Mr. Nukaga is responsible for
compiling a budget. If what he said is found contrary to the facts,
not only the cabinet minister but also the Fukuda cabinet will find
themselves in a hopeless situation." Ozawa indicated that depending
on the outcome of the planned summoning of Finance Minister Nukaga
as a sworn witness, there may be an impact on the Fukuda

(4) Seiron (Opinion) column by Yasunori Sone: Ways to break
stalemate in Diet

TOKYO 00005359 005 OF 008

SANKEI (Page 13) (Excerpts)
November 28, 2007

Yasunori Sone, professor at Keio University

"A grand coalition government" means one professional baseball

The chief editor of a certain newspaper company who suggested
forming a grand coalition government has been an advocate of
integrating the two professional baseball leagues into one. So, I
was oddly convinced by the idea that a grand coalition would mean to
shift to a one-league system. Technically speaking, a one-league
system corresponds to a unicameral legislature. For Japan to shift
the current bicameral system to a unicameral one, Japan needs to
amend its Constitution. Is the idea of forming a grand coalition
something like a merger of the Giants and the Hanshin Tigers?

Democracy is not necessarily premised on a two-party system, but the
prerequisite is that two or more political parties must exist.

The recent uproar over the idea of forming a grand coalition in
Japan gave me an opportunity to confirm a few things. One is that
bills are not enacted into law unless they clear both chambers of
the Diet. Another is that even though one party wins a victory in
the Upper House election, it does not mean that it holds the reins
of government. That party still cannot put its campaign pledges into

A grand coalition in Germany was frequently cited when the uproar
over the idea of forming a grand coalition in Japan developed. In
fact, one academic asked me, "Germany has created a grand alliance
to resolve the split in the parliament, hasn't it?" This question
made me realize the need to give a clear-cut explanation about
(Germany's grand alliance).

Difference in grand alliance between Japan and Germany

Members of Germany's Federal Council, which corresponds to Japan's
Upper House, are not elected. The Federal Council consists of
representatives from each province. So there is no case where the
opposition parties hold a majority of seats in the Federal Council
like Japan.

Germany has formed two grand alliances until now, including the
current one. The reason why Germany has formed a grand alliance is
principally to secure a majority in the Federal Assembly in order to
have a stable foundation for the government. Meanwhile, in Japan,
the ruling bloc holds more than a two-third majority of seats in the
Lower House. This means that the foundation of the ruling coalition
is as firm as a rock. Given this, the reason why Japan's ruling bloc
attempted to form a grand coalition recently was perhaps because the
ruling camp wanted to resolve the impasse in the Upper House, where
the opposition bloc holds a majority and tends to reject the ruling
bloc-sponsored bills. Although the current Diet has been in a
stalemate, I think the root cause of this stalemate is the lack of
enthusiasm to activate discussion in the Diet.

A two-third majority of votes in the Lower House can override bills
rejected by the Upper House. This is one way for the ruling bloc to
deal with the current situation in the Upper House under the current

TOKYO 00005359 006 OF 008

Constitution. Without using this method, the ruling parties
attempted to form a grand coalition (with the major opposition
party), perhaps envisioning a distant future. This approach is no
more than the one taken under the so-called 1955-year political
setup (namely, when two major parties in Japan merged).
Specifically, under this political setup, political parties tended
to think that a majority of votes was necessary in order to get
bills approved in the Diet.

Another method supposed under the Constitution to deal with the
current situation in the Diet is the use of a joint committee of
both Houses. Given the composition of the current joint committee, I
think it is impossible to get a final draft of a bill. To deal with
this situation, one idea is to change the current joint committee,
which has simply followed precedent. Ideas are necessary accordingly
to alter or make good use of the joint committee system.

Each party should devise through talks ways to better use the
parliamentary system.

(5) Can Defense Ministry start all over again?

TOKYO (Page 2) (Full)
November 27, 2007

Former Administrative Vice Defense Minister Takemasa Moriya is now
being questioned over his murky ties with a former managing director
of Yamada Corporation, a defense-related trading company. Meanwhile,
the defense contractor's bill-padding was brought to light. The
Defense Ministry-since its Defense Agency days-has been called a
hotbed of scandals. Its occasional reorganizations in the past,
however, did not work well. This time as well, the government is
about to embark on a drastic reform of the Defense Ministry. It is
possible for the Defense Ministry to start all over again?

The Defense Ministry yesterday held a meeting of its working group
to reform its current system of procurement. In the wake of a
defense contractor's bill-padding, the Defense Ministry confirmed
its intention in the meeting to study ways to procure defense
equipment for the Self-Defense Forces, including whether it is
possible for the Defense Ministry to enter into direct contracts
with manufacturers instead of dealing with them through trading

The government will also call its advisory panel to meet next week
on a reform of the Defense Ministry. The advisory panel will discuss
how to secure the transparency of defense procurement and how to
carry through civilian control. The panel is expected to work out an
interim report of its discussions in February next year.

The Defense Ministry, when it had agency status, was tainted with
scandals over its procurement of expensive weapons and its placing
of orders for public works for base neighbors. In those days as
well, the government often reformed the agency. Defense Agency
Director General Fukushiro Nukaga, currently in the post of finance
minister, resigned over a 1998 misappropriation incident that
involved the Central Procurement Office (CPO). At that time, the
government broke up the CPO into a contract division and a cost
accounting division in order to prevent bill-padding. In 2006, the
Defense Facilities Administration Agency (DFAA) was involved in a
bid-rigging incident. In the aftermath of that event, the government
abolished the DFAA. Both actions were aimed at revamping the

TOKYO 00005359 007 OF 008

function of checking the two defense organizations in order to
prevent their specific personnel and sections from being
concentratedly authorized.

In the bill-padding event this time, the Defense Ministry was unable
to check a trading company's asking price. In the background was the
existence of Moriya, who served in the post of administrative vice
minister for an unprecedentedly four years and who boasted of his
strong influence.

In the end, the Defense Ministry's past reforms were all in vain.
This means that the Defense Ministry has repeated the same mistake.

Defense Minister Shigeru Ishiba called the Defense Ministry's past
efforts "makeshift." With this, Ishiba admitted that his ministry's
two reorganizations in the past were insufficient. Ishiba, in his
Diet reply, suggested the necessity of political appointees from the
private sector as defense counselors to the defense minister in
order to strengthen civilian control. In addition, the Defense
Ministry will also need to add third party oversight in order to
fulfill its procurement overseeing functions.

(6) Municipal, prefectural authorities strongly object to FA-18
arrival from Iwakuni for training

RYUKYU SHIMPO (Page 2) (Full)
November 28, 2007

The arrival of 30 FA-18 fighters and 600 Marines from Iwakuni base
in Yamaguchi Prefecture for readiness training at the U.S. Air
Force's Kadena base has enraged local communities in the vicinity of
Kadena base. In addition, there also have been strong objections
from local communities neighboring Futenma airfield, where the
personnel will be based for the training. One local resident said,
"It's a buildup of base functions." The Okinawa prefectural
government is also concerned about such training that will be
carried out with the participation of so many fighter jets. "We've
never heard of such a thing," an official of Okinawa Prefecture's
Military Base Affairs Division said. The Okinawa prefectural
government inquired of the base about the training. The Defense
Ministry's local defense bureau also requested the base to check up
the fighter jets in their maintenance and carry out safety control
in a thoroughgoing way.

"When they have plans to relocate several fighters to bases in other
prefectures for training purposes, the government will talk about it
often with local hosts," says Chatan Town's Mayor Masaharu Noguni,
who chairs a liaison conference of three municipalities hosting
Kadena base. "But," Noguni went on, "600 troops suddenly came to
Kadena." He added in an angry tone: "They're really using the base
as they like. They're building up the base functions in the name of
U.S. military realignment."

Ginowan City is saddled with Futenma airfield. Its mayor, Yoichi
Iha, indicated that he would inquire about the training because he
knows nothing about it. "If they're going to carry it out, our
burden will be more than double," Iha said, adding: "I'm absolutely
against any kind of training that will cause the local residents to
feel uneasy. All of Ginowan City and all of Okinawa Prefecture are
even more upset. I will file a protest with the liaison conference

TOKYO 00005359 008 OF 008

Okinawa Prefecture's Military Base Affairs Division, informed of the
readiness training plan, made an oral request to the Kadena Air
Base's public affairs office for sufficient consideration so that
the training will not affect local residents. The division is
concerned about the readiness training to be conducted with the
participation of fighter jets unlike before. "If they have plans to
conduct different training, then we'd like to think about different
counteractions," a division official said.

(7) Prime Minister's schedule, November 27

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
November 28, 2007

Attended cabinet meeting in Diet building.

Attended ceremony for the 60th anniversary of the founding of Japan
War-Bereaved Families Association held in Kudan Kaikan Hall.

Met at Kantei with Liu Beixian, leader of the Chinese delegation of
journalists to Japan, joined by TV Asahi President Hirose and
journalist Tahara. Met afterwards with Science and Technology
Minister Kishida, lawmaker Aizawa, member of the Science and
Technology Policy Council. Kishida remained in the room.

Met with Chief Cabinet Secretary Machimura.

Met with Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Ono.

Met with Agriculture Minister Wakabayashi, followed by
Administrative Reform Minister Watanabe and Kikkoman Chairman Mogi.

Met with Finance Minister Nukaga and Tax Bureau chief Kato.

Attended monthly economic report-connected cabinet ministers'

Photo session for Vietnamese President Nyuyen Minh Triet. Held
summit with Triet. Held signing ceremony together with Triet. Held
joint press conference.

Hosted dinner party for Vietnamese president.

Returned to his private residence in Nozawa.


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