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Cablegate: Tokyo Media Reaction - U.S. Relations with Eastern Europe,

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FM AMEMBASSY TOKYO
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UNCLAS TOKYO 002448

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 - U.S. RELATIONS WITH EASTERN EUROPE,
DEFENSE SECRETARY GATES'S VISIT TO JAPAN, AFGHANISTAN, AND SUDAN

1. LEAD STORIES: Friday morning's Sankei led with the disclosure by
several GOJ sources that the Hatoyama administration has informally
decided to choose and propose to the U.S. an alternate site for the
Futenma replacement facility somewhere else in Okinawa by the end of
the year.

2. "Distrust of U.S. Spreading in East Europe" The top-circulation,
moderate Yomiuri reported from Warsaw (10/23): "Distrust of the
U.S. is intensifying among former communist states in Eastern
Europe following the decision by the Obama administration, which is
moving forward in its reconciliation with Russia, to shelve plans to
deploy missile defense platforms in Eastern Europe. The U.S. is
desperately trying to curb this sentiment by sending Vice President
Biden off to three Eastern European nations. However, the nations
have reacted coolly to the visit. The relationship between the U.S.
and Eastern Europe, which has been in place since the end of the
Cold War, has become strained."

3. "Hatoyama Administration's Position Not Evident" On Secretary of
Defense Gates's recent trip to Japan, during which he called for a
swift implementation of the existing Futenma relocation initiative,
the liberal Mainichi asserted in an editorial (10/23): "The Futenma
relocation issue has now entered a new stage, as a top USG official
has formally conveyed a message [that there will be no relocation of
Marines to Guam nor any personnel reduction in Okinawa without
Futenma relocation] to the GOJ.... A delay [in a GOJ decision] would
allow the problems of safety and noise affecting residents near MCAS
Futenma to remain unaddressed. Prime Minister Hatoyama has no choice
other than to make a decision while taking into account the ongoing
review of the negotiation process.... The premier appears to be
anxious to see the results of the Nago mayoral election in late
January. However, it's hard to imagine the poll results leading to a
breakthrough in the Futenma issue."

4. "Rooting out Corruption, Irregularities Top Priority" On the
upcoming runoff presidential election in Afghanistan, the liberal
Tokyo editorialized (10/23): "We are concerned that the upcoming
race will further deepen the turmoil in Afghanistan. Election
irregularities, which took place in the August election, must not be
allowed to run rampant again.... A fair election must be conducted
so that former Foreign Minister Abdullah, if he is defeated, can
accept the outcome. If the northern parts of Afghanistan distance
themselves from the central government, the new administration will
further lose its grip on power in the face of increased control of
the southern region by the Taliban."

5. "China Holds Key to Persuading Sudan" The liberal Asahi wrote
(10/23): "The Obama administration has launched a diplomatic policy
of 'pressure and incentives' centering on economic sanctions and
dialogue in order to build peace in Sudan. It is clear that the
initiative was launched without solid prospects, as there is no
guarantee that the U.S. will be able to successfully persuade the
Sudanese government, which has different views on issues such as
human rights violations and war crimes. Whether or not the U.S. will
be able to draw China, which has strong influence over Sudan, into
the creation of a coalition is the key to achieving a breakthrough."


ROOS

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