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Cablegate: Tokyo Media Reaction - Georgia-Russia Crisis

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PP RUEHFK RUEHKSO RUEHNAG RUEHNH
DE RUEHKO #2337 2390606
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 260606Z AUG 08
FM AMEMBASSY TOKYO
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UNCLAS TOKYO 002337

SIPDIS

STATE FOR I/RF, PA/PR/FPC/W, IIP/G/EA, EAP/PD, R/MR,
EAP/J, EAP/P, PM;
USTR FOR PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICE;
TREASURY FOR OASIA/IMI;
SECDEF FOR OASD/PA;
CP BUTLER OKINAWA FOR AREA FIELD OFFICE;
PACOM HONOLULU FOR PUBLIC DIPLOMACY ADVISOR

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OIIP KMDR KPAO JA
SUBJECT: TOKYO MEDIA REACTION - GEORGIA-RUSSIA CRISIS
AND U.S.-INDIA NUCLEAR AGREEMENT

1. LEAD STORIES: Top items on Tuesday morning included
a consensus forged among ruling coalition officials
that the extraordinary Diet session will convene on
September 12 and run through November 20.

2. "U.S.-Russia Summit Needed" The liberal Mainichi
argued (8/26): "Rather than leaving his successor with
a new Cold War, President Bush should look into ways to
enhance coordination with Russia. The U.S. and Russia
must cooperate on the six-party talks on North Korea,
as well as on Iran's nuclear development....
U.S.-Russia dialogue is needed to deal with the
Georgian crisis and MD deployment in Europe. Rather
than widening their rivalry by courting other
countries, the U.S. and Russia would be better served
by holding a summit."

3. "Russia Attempting to Drive Wedge Between U.S.,
Europe" A Moscow correspondent for the
business-oriented Nikkei wrote (8/26): "Russia is
upping the ante against the U.S. and Europe, which are
demanding a complete withdrawal from Georgia. Behind a
series of statements by President Medvedev and Prime
Minister Putin lies their assumption that the U.S. and
Europe will not be able to maintain a united front
against Russia, as Germany and other European nations,
which have deep economic ties with Russia, do not want
to aggravate their relations with Moscow. Russia hopes
to effectively control Georgia by driving a wedge
between the U.S. and Europe."

4. "Will U.S.-India Pact Help Prevent Nuclear
Proliferation?" The top-circulation, moderate Yomiuri
editorialized (8/26): "The U.S.-India nuclear
cooperation accord, rather than patching up cracks in
the NPT regime, runs the risk of enlarging them.... The
USG request to the nuclear suppliers group (NSG) that
India be exempted from its strict nuclear export
regulations is unacceptable, as India is under no
requirement to reduce its nuclear arms.... Allowing
India to receive nuclear cooperation while tolerating
its possession of nuclear arms would set a bad
precedent. Pakistan would request similar treatment,
while cries of unfairness from NPT signatories would
mount. Trust in the NPT regime, which has already been
greatly shaken by the nuclear programs of North Korea
and Iran, must not be further undermined."

5. "Brake Must Not Be Readily Removed" The liberal
Tokyo Shimbun wrote (8/26): "The U.S. took the lead in
launching both the IAEA and NSG with the primary goal
of preventing nuclear proliferation. The Bush
administration's position (on nuclear cooperation with
India) represents a policy turnaround and can be
criticized as a double standard. The U.S., before the
nuclear cooperation accord takes effect, should advise
India to join the NPT."

ZUMWALT

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