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Cablegate: Tokyo Media Reaction - Presidential Speech On

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FM AMEMBASSY TOKYO
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UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 TOKYO 002764

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 - PRESIDENTIAL SPEECH ON
NEW U.S. STRATEGY ON AFGHANISTAN AND PAKISTAN

1. LEAD STORIES: Top stories on Thursday morning
included an Asahi report claiming that Prime Minister
Hatoyama is considering postponing a conclusion on the
Futenma relocation issue until next January or later.

2. "Training of Afghan Forces Holds Key to Success" The
liberal Asahi editorialized (12/3): "The training of
Afghan forces and police holds the key to success in
the new U.S. strategy. This is an issue of whether the
second Karzai administration will be able to develop
sufficient governing ability to prevent a resurgence of
terrorists, and stabilize the security situation in the
nation."

3. "Decision to Send Additional Troops Unavoidable" The
liberal Mainichi stated in an editorial (12/3): "Senior
members of al-Qaeda have declared that they will use a
nuclear weapon against the U.S. if they can obtain one.
If terrorists ever launch a nuclear attack, not only
the U.S. but also the entire international community
will incur immense damage. In this regard, the decision
to send additional troops was unavoidable."

4. "Afghan Government Bears Important Responsibility"
The moderate Yomiuri opined in an editorial (12/3): "It
is important for the Afghan government to take
responsibility to improve public security in the
nation. President Obama announced his policy of
stepping up activities to train Afghan forces and
police, and to cooperate with the Afghan security
force. However, the foundation of the Karzai
administration is extremely vulnerable. The U.S.
military needs to make efforts to build a relationship
of trust with influential local tribes."

5. "We Should Support U.S. Strategy" The business-
oriented Nikkei editorialized (12/3): "Although it is
uncertain whether the new strategy will bring about a
breakthrough in the quagmire in Afghanistan, the
security of the U.S. and the world will be exposed to
serious threats if we fail to deal with the turmoil in
Afghanistan, which has become a hotbed of international
terrorist groups such as al-Qaeda. We should welcome
the decision by the U.S. government.... There is no
guarantee that the new strategy will achieve a
successful outcome. Still, eliminating international
terrorism by restoring public order in Afghanistan is
an important challenge for the global community. There
is no other way to achieve this than through unified
efforts to support the new U.S. strategy."

6. "International Cooperation Indispensable" The
conservative Sankei insisted in an editorial (12/3):
"The success of the new strategy will affect the future
course of worldwide efforts to fight terrorism. We
should not allow it to fail.... For President Obama,
this is a gamble with the fate of the nation. In order
to achieve success and build a foundation for peace and
stability in Afghanistan and Pakistan, international
cooperation and participation will be indispensable."

7. " Cooperation from Global Community Essential" The
liberal Tokyo Shimbun wrote in an editorial (12/3):
"President Obama apparently hopes that the Afghan

TOKYO 00002764 002 OF 002


government will establish a security system and gain
sufficient governing ability before the U.S. starts
withdrawing its troops from Afghanistan in 2011.
However, distrust of the Karzai administration remains
due to its involvement in corruption and drug
trafficking. Cooperation from the UN and the global
community is indispensable."


ROOS

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