Cablegate: Japanese Morning Press Highlights 11/20/09

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1) Top headlines
2) Editorials
3) Prime Minister's daily schedule (Nikkei)

Futenma endgame:
4) Hatoyama: "I will formulate a plan" for Futenma relocation
5) Foreign Minister Okada says existing plan also acceptable
6) GOJ rapidly moving toward decision to approve existing Futenma
relocation plan within this year (Yomiuri)
7) Defense Ministry proposes mitigating local base-hosting burden
over Futenma relocation (Asahi)
8) Futenma working group to document agreement under four ministers'
names (Mainichi)

9) Kamei sounds out Hiranuma about forming new party (Yomiuri)
10) Lower House passes bill enabling small- and medium-sized
enterprises to defer loan payments to financial institutions
11) GOJ drafts anti-trafficking action plan (Nikkei)
12) LDP to field young former ASDF member for Upper House
proportional representation section (Yomiuri)

Defense & security:
13) PM reveals President Obama replied "I trust you." (Asahi)
14) U.S. soldier hints at involvement in hit-and-run accident;
would like to apologize (Akahata)
15) Japanese and Chinese defense chiefs to meet on 27th (Nikkei)
16) Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirano: SDF dispatch to Iraq did not
violate Constitution (Nikkei)
17) PM says Okinawa police have asked U.S. to comply with request to
question hit-and-run suspect (Nikkei)
18) Council for Science and Technology Policy says budget cuts will
hobble scientific development in Japan (Yomiuri)

19) American Airlines VP: Delta tie-up with JAL might violate
antitrust law (Nikkei)
20) Japanese and Chinese foreign ministers make no progress in
negotiations on cooperation for development of gas fields (Asahi)



Forced passage of loan moratorium bill at Lower House plenary
session before dawn amid LDP, New Komeito boycott

Government Revitalization Unit to put redundant projects on chopping

Loan moratorium bill passes Lower House plenary session amid LDP,
New Komeito boycott


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Prices drop for 60 PERCENT of food, daily necessities; deflationary
trend emerging, canceling out higher cost of raw materials

Ruling parties force loan moratorium bill through Lower House; banks
distressed by responsibility for implementation

Tokyo Shimbun:
Tough hurdles in recruitment of officials of independent
administrative agencies; eight positions receive no applicants

Unaccounted-for spending of Cabinet secret funds: 250 million yen by
LDP-New Komeito administration two days after general election; 120
million yen by Hatoyama administration so far


(1) Forced passage of bills: What happened to "Diet in a new era"?
(2) Sharp decline in job offer rate: Do not create another lost

(1) Obama Asian tour: North Korea's nuclear issue is the litmus
(2) New National Personnel Authority commissioner: Have the
determination not to evade drastic reforms

(1) Deferring of party leaders' debate: Prime Minister should make
decision to hold debate
(2) Board of Audit report should be used in government project

(1) Stock prices dive caused by rush of new stock issuance and
absence of policy
(2) Compete (with Amazon Kindle) by online sale of books

(1) Government project screening: Fairness also needed in weeding
out waste
(2) Amakudari: Applying double standards?

Tokyo Shimbun:
(1) U.S.-DPRK dialogue: Opportunity to move from confrontation to
(2) JR West information leakage: Restoration of trust becomes more

(1) Aid for the unemployed: Do not throw them on the streets in the
cold winter

3) Prime Minister's Official Residence (Kantei)

Prime Minister's schedule

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
November 20, 2009

TOKYO 00002682 003 OF 010

November 19

09:25 Handed a letter of appointment to Erikawa as president of the
National Personnel Authority at the Prime Minister's Official
Residence (Kantei). Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirano and Deputy Chief
Cabinet Secretaries Matsuno and Matsui were also present. Hirano
stayed behind.
10:26 Met Advisor Nakayama.
11:11 Met Matsui, followed by former Economist editor-in-chief Bill
13:31 Met Environment Minister Ozawa and Matsuno.
13:59 Met Cabinet Office Senior Vice-Minister Furukawa and
Government Revitalization Unit Secretary General Hideki Kato.
14:31 Met Foreign Minister Okada and Defense Minister Kitazawa.
16:05 Met Nippon Professional Baseball Commissioner Ryozo Kato, All
Japan University Baseball Federation Vice President Akira Nanbara,
and Secretary General Masayuki Naito.
17:3 Met UN High Commissioner for Refugees Guterres.
18:01 Attended a Government Revitalization Unit meeting.
19:06 Met National Strategy Minister Kan.
21:18 Attended a Lower House plenary session.
23:43 Met DPJ Secretary General Ozawa, Lower House Rules and
Administration Committee Chairman Matsumoto, and others in the Diet

November 20

0:12 Attended the Lower House plenary session.

4) Prime Minister Hatoyama: "I will formulate a plan" for Futenma

NIKKEI (Page 20) (Full)
November 20, 2009

Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama met on Nov. 19 with Foreign Minister
Katsuya Okada and Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa at the Prime
Minister's Official Residence (the Kantei). Referring to the issue
of relocating the U.S. Marine Corps' Futenma Air Station in Okinawa
Prefecture, the prime minister during the meeting once again
indicated his intention to make a final decision, saying, "I will
formulate a plan."

5) Foreign Minister Okada implies possible acceptance of existing
Futenma relocation plan

YOMIURI (Page 1) (Full)
November 20, 2009

Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada discussed the relocation of the
U.S.forces' Futenma Air Station (in Ginowan City, Okinawa) at the
House of Councillors Committee on Foreign Affairs and Defense on
Nov. 19. He said: "Theoretically, all options are possible,"
indicating for the first time his possible acceptance of the current
plan to relocate Futenma to the coastal area of Camp Schwab (in Nago
City). Okada had so far limited himself to hinting at such a
possibility, saying that the existing plan "will be acceptable if a
reexamination (of the policymaking process) shows that it is
reasonable," since he has been looking at the option of merging
Futenma with Kadena Air Base (located in the towns of Kadena and
Chatan and Okinawa City).

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Meanwhile, Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama discussed proposals to
revise the existing plan, including new measures to reduce the
burden on Okinawa, with Okada and Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa
at the Prime Minister's Official Residence (Kantei) on Nov. 19.
Hatoyama said: "I will formulate a plan," stressing that he will be
the one to make the final decision.

He also told reporters at the Kantei on the early evening of the
same day: "We are in the process of examining various options. There
is also the Japan-U.S. agreement," indicating that the existing plan
is not being ruled out as an option.

6) Current plan for Futenma relocation moving forward quickly in the
government; PM Hatoyama still cautious

YOMIURI (Page 4) (Full)
November 20, 2009

Moves in the government to work for settling the question of the
relocation of the U.S. forces' Futenma Air Station in Okinawa under
the current plan to relocate the base to the coastal area of Camp
Schwab have accelerated. However, Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama
still maintains a cautious attitude.

Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa went to the Prime Minister's
Official Residence (Kantei) with Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada on
Nov. 19 to brief Hatoyama on the proposals of the Ministry of
Defense (MOD), including measures to reduce the burden on Okinawa,
premised on the existing relocation plan. These proposals include
frontloading the relocation of 8,000 U.S. Marines to Guam, the
return of some U.S. military facilities south of Kadena Air Base
(KAB) ahead of schedule, and moving more exercises on the KAB
elsewhere. A senior MOD official says: "While there are no
surprises, these proposals demonstrate good faith."

U.S. budget allocations for the relocation of the Marines to Guam
will be finalized in mid-December, while Japan's FY2010 budget bills
will also be formulated in mid-December. If a conclusion is deferred
to next year, it will not be possible to obtain the related funding
in both countries, which will make it difficult to implement the
existing plan. Moreover, a mayoral election is taking place in Nago
City - the proposed Futenma relocation site - in January. It is
believed that the closer it gets to the mayoral race, in which
Futenma relocation is bound to be the main issue, the more difficult
it will become for the government to reach a conclusion. Therefore,
it is generally thought in the government that the time limit for
settling this issue under the existing plan is "before the end of
the year."

However, Hatoyama's real intent remains unclear.

At his meeting with Kitazawa and Okada, Hatoyama praised the MOD
proposals, saying: "You have drawn up good proposals." A visit to
Okinawa by Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirofumi Hirano is also being
planned. The Hatoyama cabinet's e-mail magazine on Nov. 19 relates
that at the recent Japan-U.S. summit meeting with President Barack
Obama, Hatoyama told the President: "Please trust me" and the
President responded with: "Absolutely, I trust you," thus playing up
the relationship of trust between the two leaders. However, the
Prime Minister's aides claim that this exchange "did not amount to
any promise." In this e-mail magazine, Hatoyama merely talks about a
"good result for both sides."

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7) Defense Ministry proposes mitigating local base-hosting burden
over Futenma relocation

ASAHI (Page 12) (Full)
Eve., November 19, 2009

The Defense Ministry has modified the current plan to relocate the
U.S. Marine Corps' Futenma Air Station in Ginowan, Okinawa
Prefecture, to the Henoko area of the island prefecture's northern
coastal city of Nago and submitted the modified plan to the prime
minister's office and the Foreign Ministry. The modified plan
incorporates measures to mitigate Okinawa's base-hosting burden,
including those for reducing the noise of aircraft deployed to the
U.S. Kadena Air Base. This plan, if approved by Prime Minister Yukio
Hatoyama and Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada, will be presented to
U.S. officials in a meeting of the Japanese and U.S. governments'
working group.

The modified plan is aimed at obtaining Okinawa's understanding by
drawing further burden-lessening concessions from the U.S.
government and softening Okinawa Prefecture's local opposition to
the planned relocation of Futenma airfield to Henoko.

The new plan features relocating Kadena-based aircraft's training
outside Okinawa Prefecture or reducing such training and lessening
aircraft noise by constraining night flights. The Defense Ministry
will also propose stipulating environment-oriented measures that
allow local officials to enter U.S. military bases for on-site
inspections if and when environmental contamination occurs there and
that requires the U.S. military to restore the contaminated sites of
bases to their original state. In addition, the new plan also
proposes requesting the U.S. government to move up a portion of the
current "roadmap" for the realignment of U.S. forces in Japan.
Specifically, the ministry plans to press the U.S. government to
return the sites of U.S. military bases located south of the Kadena

8) Futenma working group to document agreement under four ministers'

MAINICHI (Page 1) (Full)
November 20, 2009

A ministerial-level working group of the Japanese and U.S.
governments over the pending issue of relocating the U.S. Marine
Corps' Futenma Air Station in Ginowan, Okinawa Prefecture, has
confirmed that the two governments will conclude an agreement in
writing by the end of the year under the names of the foreign and
defense ministers and the U.S. state and defense secretaries,
sources said yesterday. Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama clarified
yesterday that he will submit to the working group his own idea on
behalf of the Japanese government. The working group's conclusion is
expected to constitute a new de facto intergovernmental agreement
between Japan and the United States.

Hatoyama has already expressed his intention of accepting the
working group's conclusion as "a decision with the most weight."
Meanwhile, the U.S. government has called for the Japanese
government to carry out the current plan to relocate Futenma
airfield to a coastal area of Camp Schwab in the Henoko area of
Okinawa Prefecture's northern coastal city of Nago, and he has

TOKYO 00002682 006 OF 010

rejected Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada's advocacy of integrating
the heliport functions of Futenma airfield into the U.S. Kadena Air

The documentation of agreement is therefore expected to incorporate
the working group's approval of the current plan for Futenma
relocation to Henoko and to reject Futenma's merger with Kadena.
"Logically, the agreement between Japan and the United States (on
the current plan) is also an option," Hatoyama told reporters at his
office. "I'm now looking into the various options," he added. In
this connection, Hatoyama met yesterday at his office with Okada and
Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa. In this meeting, Kitazawa
explained his ministry's plan to mitigate Okinawa Prefecture's
base-hosting burden, based on the current plan. Hatoyama clarified
there he will work out his idea on the government's behalf. "I will
make a plan," he told them.

9) Hiranuma remains cautious about Kamei's call to launch a new

YOMIURI (Page 4) (Full)
November 20, 2009

People's New Party (PNP) Representative Shizuka Kamei, who is also
minister for financial affairs, held talks with former Economy,
Trade, and Industry Minister Takeo Hiranuma, an independent, in the
Diet building yesterday. In the session, Kamei sounded out Hiranuma
on the idea of launching a new party by the PNP, the New Party
Nippon, and the Hiranuma group. Kamei said to Hiranuma, "Let's work
together again." In response, Hiranuma expressed his desire to
discuss the matter in his group, saying, "I can't give you an answer
right now."

10) Ruling parties ram business debt bill through Diet

ASAHI (Top Play) (Lead paragraph)
November 20, 2009

In a House of Representatives plenary session before dawn today, a
bill to encourage lenders to freeze debt repayments for small and
mid-size companies was approved by a majority from the Democratic
Party of Japan, the Social Democratic Party, the People's New Party,
and the Japanese Communist Party. The bill was sent on to the House
of Councillors. The Liberal Democratic Party and the New Komeito
boycotted the vote on the bill taken at the plenary session. The
ruling parties are poised to take votes on all the remaining
cabinet-submitted bills in a Lower House session today. Backlash
from the opposition camp is expected to further intensify.

11) Government to crackdown on vicious cases of forcing foreign
trainees to work under bad conditions

NIKKEI (Page 38) (Full)
November 20, 2009

The government yesterday drafted a new action plan to prevent and
eradicate human trafficking - the trade in people with the aim of
coercing them into prostitution or labor. The draft categorizes
vicious cases in which brokers force foreigners who came to Japan
under training programs to work under bad conditions as human
tracking. It includes measures to tighten regulations to crackdown
on such cases.

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The draft also calls for strengthened cooperation between the
police, immigration offices, and labor standards inspection offices.
Officials will crackdown on and prosecute brokers who are forcing
foreign trainees to work under harsh conditions at low wages after
confiscating their passports. Officials will conduct on-the-spot

The current action plan on human trafficking, worked out in 2004,
was intended to protect foreign women who are forced to engage in
prostitution. Consultation offices for women have provided
protection and support for victims. In discussing measures to
tighten regulations on illegal workers, the government will also map
out measures to protect male victims.

The draft action plan will be posted on the Cabinet Secretariat's
website. The government will solicit public opinion until Dec. 3 and
then finalize the plan in a meeting of the ministerial-level crime
countermeasures conference to be held next month.

12) LDP to field young former ASDF member for Upper House
proportional representation section

YOMIURI (Page 4) (Full)
November 20, 2009

The Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) decided yesterday to field
Takashi Uto, 35, a former Air Self-Defense Force (ASDF) member, for
the proportional representation section of the House of Councillors
election next summer. Uto will be the second former SDF officer to
be fielded by the LDP following Masahisa Sato, a former Ground
Self-Defense Force col., who won a Diet seat in the 2007 Upper House
election. Uto has entered the Matsushita Institute of Government and
Management after serving at the ASDF for nine years. It is rare for
the LDP to field an unknown young person connected with the Defense
Ministry/SDF. The party plans to officially endorse him as part of
the second round, along with one member each from the Nursing
Federation and the National Land Improvement Political Federation.

13) Obama said, "I trust you," during Japan-U.S. summit, according
to Prime Minister

ASAHI (Page 12) (Full)
Evening, November 19, 2009

The Asahi Shimbun has reported that Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama
had told U.S. President Barack Obama, "Trust me," during the recent
Japan-U.S. summit. The Prime Minister said on Nov. 19: "That is a

The Prime Minister also revealed that in response, President Obama
said, "I trust you." The Prime Minister made the above comment in
response to a question from the press corps in front of his official
residential quarters.

He also explained his talks with Obama this way: "In Okinawa, there
are such strong feelings (calling for relocating the U.S. Marine
Corps' Futenma Air Station outside the prefecture). Under such
circumstances, we want to reach a conclusion as soon as possible. So
I said, 'Trust me,' and the President replied, 'I trust you.' I
think we have a relationship of trust. This is not about specific
details (such as where the air station should be relocated."

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14) U.S. service member under questioning hints at his involvement
in Okinawa hit-and-run incident, saying, "I want to apologize"

AKAHATA (Page 15) (Full)
November 20, 2009

It became clear on Nov. 19 that the 27-year-old staff sergeant, who
has been questioned by the prefectural police on a voluntary basis
in connection with the hit-and-run incident in Yomitan Village,
Okinawa Prefecture, that killed Masakazu Hokama, 66, has hinted at
his involvement in the incident. He said to a person involved in the
investigation: "I might have run him over. I want to apologize to
his family."

According to his lawyer, the staff sergeant drove near the scene
around 4 a.m. on Nov. 7 and hit something. He initially said that he
thought he had hit a tree because he got off the vehicle and checked
the area but could not find anything on the road. But he has changed
his thinking after learning during questioning by the prefectural
police that blood and hair adhering to the vehicle seem to be Mr.
Hokama's, according to the lawyer.

The U.S. service member has been detained in the U.S. Army's Torii
Communications Station in the village. He responded to questioning
by the prefectural police on a voluntary basis for three days from
Nov. 11 but has been refusing to do so since Nov. 14, saying, "I
will not cooperate." Strongly regarding the U.S. service member as
the suspect, the prefectural police have continued requesting his
appearance for questioning.

15) Japan-China defense ministerial talks set for Nov. 27

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
November 20, 2009

The Defense Ministry announced yesterday that Chinese National
Defense Minister Liang Guanglie will visit Japan on Nov. 26. Liang
is expected to hold talks with Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa to
exchange views on the defense policies of the two countries.

16) Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirano: SDF dispatch to Iraq not

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
November 20, 2009

When asked by New Komeito member Kanae Yamamoto about the
government's view on the dispatch of the Self-Defense Forces (SDF)
to Iraq at a House of Councillors Cabinet Committee session
yesterday, Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirofumi Hirano responded by
saying: "The current government's position is that (the SDF dispatch
to Iraq) is not unconstitutional."

17) Prime Minister Hatoyama requests cooperation on hit-and-run

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
November 20, 2009

With regard to the fact that a U.S. service member suspected of
involvement in a fatal hit-and-run incident in the town of Yomitan,

TOKYO 00002682 009 OF 010

Okinawa Prefecture, has been refusing to appear for police
questioning, Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama said yesterday, "I have
called on (U.S. military authorities) through the Okinawa
prefectural police to deal with the incident properly," revealing
that he was requesting through the prefectural police that the
suspect appear for questioning. Hatoyama made this comment in
response to questions from reporters at the Prime Minister's
Official Residence.

18) Researchers' organizations oppose budget-request screening;
substantial cuts will impair Japan's scientific development

YOMIURI (Page 2) (Full)
November 20, 2009

The Government Revitalization Unit (GRU) has screened budgetary
requests to identify wasteful spending. As a result, it has decided
to abolish or substantively reduce the size of many projects in the
science and technology field as well. In response to this, expert
members of the government's Council for Science and Technology
Policy on Nov. 19 released an emergency proposal, noting that a call
for short-term cost-effectiveness does not sit well with science and
technology, which should be advanced from the long-term viewpoint."
The Council has eight expert members, including Takashi Shiraishi,
vice president of the National Graduate Institute for Policy

Many other academic societies and researchers' organizations also
called on the government to take a second look at its policy of
screening budget requests. The development of the next-generation
supercomputer is now likely to be suspended or subject to a measure
close to suspension. Three organizations of scientists who conduct
computational research, such as the Consortium for Computational
Fundamental Science, on the same day called for the continuation of
the project. Nine societies of biologists on the same day also
sought a revision of the GRU decision to cut the budget for
financing assistance for junior researchers, noting that the
spending cut is an improper decision that will significantly impair
the development of Japan's science and technology.

19) American Airlines vice president warns against Delta's capital
assistance to JAL, noting, "The act infringes on the U.S.
Anti-Monopoly Act."

NIKKEI (Page 9) (Full)
November 20, 2009

Theo Panagiotoulias, American Airlines vice president for Asia and
the Pacific, on Nov. 19 held a press conference in Tokyo and warned
against Delta Air Line's plan to offer capital assistance to Japan
Air Lines (JAL). He noted that in the event that JAL teams up with
Delta Air Lines, their share of the Pacific route would account for
over 60 percent, which could disqualify the company from obtaining
antitrust immunity (ATI). JAL, which is now applying for financial
assistance from the Enterprise Turnaround Initiative Corporation of
Japan (ETIC), intends to choose its business partner, involving a
capital tie-up, as early as before the end of the year. The
tug-of-war between the two U.S. airlines is now heating up.

Panagiotoulias pointed out, "Being a member of the Oneworld alliance
generates the effect of providing 500 million dollars or
approximately 45 billion yen in annual revenues to JAL." He then

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added that if the governments of Japan and the U.S. sign an open
skies agreement, another 100 million dollars or approximately 9
billion yen will be added to that amount. He thus stressed that if
the cost of switching the alliances is taken into account, JAL would
be able to obtain greater benefits from a tie-up if it teams up with
American Airlines.

Referring to Delta Air Lines' capital assistance offer totaling 1.2
billion dollars to JAL, he said, "American Airlines is ready to
extend a massive amount of capital assistance."

American Airlines is proposing capital assistance worth between
100-130 billion yen, teaming up with TPG, a U.S. investment fund.

20) In Japan-China foreign ministerial, no progress made on issue of
gas fields but ministers agree on cooperation toward resuming
Six-Party Talks

ASAHI (Page 4) (Slightly abridged)
November 20, 2009

Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada held a meeting with visiting Chinese
Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi at the Iikura Guest House in Tokyo last
night. Focusing on U.S. Special Representative for North Korea
Policy Stephen Bosworth's planned visit to North Korea next month to
hold U.S.-North Korea talks, they affirmed that they will cooperate
in an effort to resume the Six-Party Talks and promote the
denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

On the issue of developing gas fields in the East China Sea, the
governments of Japan and China agreed in June of last year to
jointly develop the fields. But the Chinese government has begun to
take a cautious stance in response to public opinion. Under this
situation, working-level talks to turn the agreement into a treaty
have yet to start. Okada urged his counterpart to swiftly launch
talks, but Yang just said: "We are quickly looking into the specific

The two foreign ministers also exchanged views on the 15th session
of the Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on
Climate Change (COP15) to be held in Copenhagen in December. Okada
stated: "The U.S. and China, which are the largest emitters of
greenhouse gases, have major roles to play. I expect (China) will
come up with an amazingly ambitious target." Yang replied: "I hope
industrialized countries will make specific promises on their own
initiative. China would like to extend cooperation while taking
responsibility that is common with but slightly different (from that
of the industrialized countries)."

The Japanese and Chinese foreign ministers exchanged their lists of
new members of the New Japan-China Friendship Committee for the 21st
Century designed for Japanese and Chinese experts to give advice to
their governments on political, economic, culture and other issues.

Prior to the foreign ministerial talks, Yang called on House of
Councillors President Satsuki Eda and revealed that the Chinese
government is making arrangements for Chinese Vice President Xi
Jinping, who is viewed as the most likely candidate to become the
next president, to visit Japan in mid-December.


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