Search

 

Cablegate: Japanese Morning Press Highlights 12/30/09

VZCZCXRO7761
PP RUEHFK RUEHKSO RUEHNAG RUEHNH
DE RUEHKO #2948/01 3640801
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 300801Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY TOKYO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 8462
INFO RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC PRIORITY
RHEHAAA/WHITE HOUSE WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RUEAWJA/USDOJ WASHDC PRIORITY
RULSDMK/USDOT WASHDC PRIORITY
RUCPDOC/USDOC WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC//J5//
RHHMUNA/HQ USPACOM HONOLULU HI
RHHMHBA/COMPACFLT PEARL HARBOR HI
RHMFIUU/HQ PACAF HICKAM AFB HI//CC/PA//
RHMFIUU/USFJ //J5/JO21//
RUYNAAC/COMNAVFORJAPAN YOKOSUKA JA
RUAYJAA/CTF 72
RUEHNH/AMCONSUL NAHA 0456
RUEHFK/AMCONSUL FUKUOKA 8110
RUEHOK/AMCONSUL OSAKA KOBE 1922
RUEHNAG/AMCONSUL NAGOYA 5222
RUEHKSO/AMCONSUL SAPPORO 8611
RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 2456
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL 9124
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 8548

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 08 TOKYO 002948

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR E, P, EB, EAP/J, EAP/P, EAP/PD, PA;
WHITE HOUSE/NSC/NEC; JUSTICE FOR STU CHEMTOB IN ANTI-TRUST DIVISION;
TREASURY/OASIA/IMI/JAPAN; DEPT PASS USTR/PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICE;
SECDEF FOR JCS-J-5/JAPAN,
DASD/ISA/EAPR/JAPAN; DEPT PASS ELECTRONICALLY TO USDA
FAS/ITP FOR SCHROETER; PACOM HONOLULU FOR PUBLIC DIPLOMACY ADVISOR;
CINCPAC FLT/PA/ COMNAVFORJAPAN/PA.

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OIIP KMDR KPAO PGOV PINR ECON ELAB JA

SUBJECT: JAPANESE MORNING PRESS HIGHLIGHTS 12/30/09

INDEX:

(1) Interview with Noboru Yamaguchi, National Defense Academy
professor, on gravity of Japan-U.S. alliance - Closeness more
important than equality (Yomiuri)

(2) Government working team to meet in early January to deal with
serious effects of child pornography (Mainichi)

(3) Poll on family (Asahi)

ARTICLES:

(1) Interview with Noboru Yamaguchi, National Defense Academy
professor, on gravity of Japan-U.S. alliance - Closeness more
important than equality

YOMIURI (Page 4) (Full)
December 30, 2009

There are only a few people in the United States who are earnestly
endeavoring to deepen the Japan-U.S. alliance. If those people lose
trust in Japan due to the issue of relocating the U.S. Marine Corps'
Futenma Air Station, we will have as serious situation on our hands.
That is because, after all, some aspects of the maintenance and
management of a bilateral alliance depend on the people. The
question of Okinawa's base burden must be resolved. But if the
United States thinks Japan is not a reliable partner, negotiations
will not move forward. In that respect, the handling of this issue
is of great importance.

Although some are calling for moving Futenma Air Station outside
Okinawa, this option is difficult from a military perspective. The
Marine Corps consists of the command, ground combat unit, air force
unit, and logistics support unit. The Futenma base is being used by
the air force unit that supports the ground combat unit. Moving this
base outside Okinawa is tantamount to putting the shoes outside the
entrance to a house.

There are also many problems with relocating all of the Marines to
Guam. In Guam, it would be difficult to act in concert with U.S.
Seventh Fleet ships in Yokosuka and Sasebo and with Kadena Air Base
in Japan.

Against all odds, Washington has accepted Tokyo's request for the
realignment of U.S. forces in Japan, including the relocation of
Futenma Air Station. It is expected that the implementation of the
existing plan to relocate Futenma to the city of Nago in Okinawa
will entail much difficulty. But if the government looks for other
sites, it will be 10 to 15 years before a conclusion is reached. It
is realistic to consider relocation to Nago, which was picked after
much discussion.

The Japan-U.S. alliance involves several thousand American youths
risking their lives to defend Japan during a contingency. Since
contingencies rarely occur, it difficult for Japanese people to
comprehend such a reality. On the other hand, misconduct by U.S.
service members and accidents involving stray bullets from U.S.
military maneuvering ranges are very noticeable. This situation can
easily breed discontent.

Some people believe that the current state of the Japan-U.S.

TOKYO 00002948 002 OF 008


alliance is comparable to the U.S.-ROK alliance under the previous
Roh Moo Hyun administration. The Roh administration is said to have
undermined the U.S.-ROK relationship. Nevertheless, the Roh
administration successfully relocated a U.S. base away from central
Seoul while strengthening the U.S.-ROK alliance by sending troops to
Iraq and Afghanistan. It can be said that the Roh administration
achieved sufficient results in relations with the United States.

The Hatoyama administration has declared that it will aim for a
close and equal Japan-U.S. alliance. Equality is fine, but closeness
is also important.

(2) Government working team to meet in early January to deal with
serious effects of child pornography

MAINICHI (Page 3) (Abridged)
December 30, 2009

Satoshi Chiyozaki, Koichi Tanno, Kazuya Suzuki

There has been an unabated increase in child pornography portraying
the sexual abuse of children under 18 years of age. Japan has been
criticized by the international community for its slow response, but
the government's Cabinet Meeting on Anti-crime Measures will hold
the first meeting of its working team in early January and make
serious efforts to clear its reputation. Meanwhile, attempts to
amend and tighten the law prohibiting child prostitution and child
pornography with regard to the possession of (pornographic) images
have plunged into further confusion and impasse since the change of
administration.

One particular child pornography incident this year came as a great
shock to the police.

The Miyagi Prefectural Police arrested in November a 46-year-old
unemployed man for shooting pornographic images of a one-year-old
baby girl at his house in Tokyo. The baby's 31-year-old mother was
actually the one who handed her to the man. The man inserted his
penis into the girl in front of the mother and recorded the scene.
At least eight other mothers were found to have done the same
thing.

This man, who is obsessed with child pornography and collecting
underwear, became acquainted with the mothers because they were
selling their own underwear through a cell phone website for this
purpose. He offered these women money in exchange for allowing him
to take pictures of their children. Nearly 10,000 pornographic
photos were found on the man's computer.

There has been an increase in child pornography incidents involving
the children's own parents. A senior investigator says that the
background to this is that "the tendency to regard children as sex
objects has become widespread." He explains that "stricter law
enforcement alone will not be sufficient."

In reality, the number of prosecutions and indicted suspects for
child pornography offenses and the number of victimized children
marked an all-time high in 2009. The National Police Agency (NPA) is
worried that if nothing is done about the low level of public
awareness, increasingly younger children may be victimized and child
pornography may come to involve increasingly brutal acts like in
Western countries. While the NPA has been looking for ways to

TOKYO 00002948 003 OF 008


cooperate with the concerned ministries, some ministries are
cautious due to their consideration for Internet-based businesses. A
unified strategy is not yet in place.

However, in light of the serious effects of child pornography on the
victims, a working team was finally launched on Dec. 22. This body
will formulate the government's first comprehensive policy by next
summer. After the Cabinet Meeting on Anti-crime Measures decided to
set up the working team at its meeting, National Public Safety
Commission Chairman Hiroshi Nakai said: "I am ashamed that Japan is
probably regarded as the most lenient country on child pornography
(among the advanced nations). The Hatoyama administration will make
every effort to eradicate child pornography," declaring his
determination.

Steps to prevent the dissemination of and access to child
pornography images on the Internet are expected to be the main
measures to be taken. These measures aim to instill widespread
awareness that "child pornography is absolutely impermissible." The
NPA, which will play a central role in the working team, will
appoint new devoted anti-child pornography officers. A senior vice
minister of the Cabinet Office will serve as the chair of the team,
and bureau chief-level officials from nine ministries will
participate.

While measures are now being taken at the government level,
deliberations in the Diet on the amendment to the law prohibiting
child prostitution and child pornography have been in disarray since
the change of administration.

With regard to the legal amendment, the Liberal Democratic Party
(LDP) and New Komeito, which were in favor of regulating even
"simple possession" or collecting images for personal viewing, and
the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ), which was reluctant about such
restrictions, submitted separate amendment bills to the Diet under
the LDP-New Komeito administration. Through discussions on revisions
to these proposals, the two sides were near agreement on regulating
"simple possession" when the House of Representatives was
dissolved.

A number of DPJ, LDP, and New Komeito Diet members who participated
in the revision discussions have attempted to have the agreed bill
passed at an early date after the change of administration. However,
there is a persistent opinion in the LDP and New Komeito that, "We
should submit a new bill with the best provisions now that we are in
opposition" (in the words of LDP Lower House member Sanae Takaichi).
Therefore, these two parties re-submitted their original bill from
before discussions with the DPJ, and this has been carried over to
the regular Diet session next year.

Furthermore, the Social Democratic Party, which has been the most
hesitant about the legal amendment, is now a ruling party. This has
exacerbated the ambiguity of the ruling coalition's position.

(3) Poll on family

ASAHI (Page 5) (Abridged)
December 27, 2009

Questions & Answers
(Figures in percentage, rounded off)


TOKYO 00002948 004 OF 008


Q: Do you support the Hatoyama cabinet?

Yes 54
No 29


Q: Which political party do you support now?

Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ or Minshuto) 40
Liberal Democratic Party (LDP or Jiminto) 19
New Komeito (NK) 3
Japanese Communist Party (JCP) 1
Your Party (YP or Minna no To) 0
People's New Party (PNP or Kokumin Shinto) 0
Reform Club (RC or Kaikaku Kurabu) 0
New Party Nippon (NPN or Shinto Nippon) 0
Other political parties 0
None 28
No answer (N/A) + don't know (D/K)7

Q: To what extent are you satisfied with your daily life now? (One
choice only)

Very satisfied 8
Somewhat satisfied 59
Not very satisfied 27
Not satisfied at all 5

Q: How would you classify your standard of living? (One choice
only)

Upper-upper class 1
Lower-upper class 2
Upper-middle class 14
Middle-middle class 45
Lower-middle class 23
Upper-lower class 10
Lower-lower class 4

Q: To what extent do you feel uneasy about you or a member of your
family losing a job or suffering an income cut? (One choice only)

Very 31
Somewhat 46
Not very 17
Not at all 4

Q: Do you think "family" is a source of comfort in today's society?

Yes 67
No 27

Q: On the whole, do you think family ties are stronger than before,
weaker than before, or remain unchanged?

Stronger 26
Weaker 33
Unchanged 39

Q: To what extent do you think family ties are important? (One
choice only)


TOKYO 00002948 005 OF 008


Very important 67
Somewhat important 30
Not very important 2
Not important at all 1

Q: What do you think the ties that bind a family are? (One choice
only)

Family name, family register 2
Biological ties 29
Living together 30
Financial ties 4
Emotional ties 33

Q: Do you think each family member needs to make efforts to protect
family ties, or do you think family ties can be protected even if
each family member does not make efforts?

Each family member needs to make efforts 92
Family ties can be protected even if each family member does not
make efforts 6

Q: Do you think it would be better for a family to spend time
together as much as they can, or do you think it would be better for
a family to feel free to spend time on their own?

Better to spend time together 67
Better to spend time on their own 26

Q: What is your ideal image of a family? (One choice only)

Father-centered family 36
Mother-centered family 12
Happy family 43
Free family 6

Q: Do you think Japan today is a society in which people can work
while maintaining a balance between work and family life?

Yes 14
No 82

Q: Do you think it would be better to strengthen government
restrictions on corporations and other entities so that people can
work while maintaining a balance between work and family life?

Yes 54
No 32

Q: Do you think marriage has more benefits for men in Japan today?

Yes 50
No 40

Q: Do you think marriage has more benefits for women in Japan
today?

Yes 47
No 43

Q: Do you think people should get married if possible, or do you
think people do not necessarily need to get married?

TOKYO 00002948 006 OF 008

People should get married if possible 52
People do not necessarily need to do so 44


Q: Do you agree that people, when they get married, should try to
give up their own free time or what they want to do for the sake of
their family?

Yes 47
No 44

Q: Do you agree that people should not get married unless they can
expect to earn a steady income?

Yes 56
No 35

Q: There are more and more people marrying late in life or not
marrying at all. To what extent do you think this is problematic for
Japan today? (One choice only)

Very 31
Somewhat 49
Not very 16
Not at all 2

Q: What do you think is the reason why there are more and more
people marrying late in life or not marrying at all? (Up to two)

Young people cannot get steady jobs or income 38
People's values about marriage have changed 39
People are expecting more from one another 10
There are more women who can support themselves 39
Living alone has become convenient 24
There are more people who prefer to live freely 31


Q: Do you think a husband or wife should mainly (1) earn money for a
living, (2) do housework like cooking and cleaning, and (3) raising
children, or do you think the husband and wife should share these
roles equally?

(1) (2) (3)
Husband 63 1 1
Wife 0 51 23
Share equally 35 46 74

Q: (Only for men) Would you like your wife to be a full-time
homemaker?

Yes 41
No 53

Q: (Only for women) Would you like to be a full-time homemaker?

Yes 31
No 62

Q: The tax burden of a man whose wife is a full-time homemaker is
lighter than that of a man whose wife is not. Do you think this is
appropriate?

TOKYO 00002948 007 OF 008

Yes 69
No 23

Q: This question is about "common law marriage" in which a man and a
woman live a married life as a matter of fact without registering
their marriage with a public office. Do you consider common law
marriage to be a type of marriage?

Yes 51
No 44


Q: When compared with a married couple, a man and a woman choosing
common law marriage are subject to disadvantages in such aspects as
taxation. Do you think it is necessary to make this distinction?

Yes 54
No 36

Q: Do you approve of amending the law so that a married couple can
choose to use the same surname or separate surnames of their own
free will?

Yes 49
No 43

Q: Under the current legal system, a man or a woman must change his
or her surname when they get married. In this regard, some people
view this as inconvenient at workplaces or elsewhere. Do you agree
with this view?

Yes 45
No 47

Q: Some people believe that family ties will weaken when separate
surnames are allowed for married couples. Do you agree with this
opinion?

Yes 39
No 55

Q: Some people believe that society will become confused if
different surnames are used in a family or for other reasons when
separate surnames are allowed for married couples. Do you agree with
this opinion?

Yes 63
No 32


Q: If separate surnames are allowed for married couples now, which
surname would you like to choose? Would you like to use the same
surname or prefer to use separate surnames?

Same surname 83
Separate surnames 10

Q: Under the current legal system, a child born to an unmarried
couple is subject to disadvantages in terms of inheritance when
compared with a child born to a married couple. Some people believe
that this legal system should be changed so that a child born to an

TOKYO 00002948 008 OF 008


unmarried couple can be treated the same as a child born to a
married couple. Do you agree with this opinion?

Yes 58
No 29

Q: Do you think Japan today is a society in which it is easy for
people to raise children?

Yes 18
No 75

Q: Do you feel reluctant to ask others like babysitters or neighbors
to help with child rearing?

Yes 31
No 65

Q: Do you think children should only be disciplined by their
families, or do you think they should be disciplined not only by
their families but also by their schools and local communities?

Only their families 40
Not only by their families but also their schools and local
communities 56


Q: What do you think parents should teach their children? (One
choice only)

Individuality, self-reliance 12
Knowledge, competitiveness 2
Thoughtfulness, cooperativeness 53
Courtesy, social morality 31

Q: How long do you think parents should support their children
financially? (One choice only)

Up to the age of 15 or so (until graduation from junior high school)
2
Up to the age of 18 or so (until graduation from high school) 31
Up to the age of 20 32
Up to the age of 22 or so (until graduation from university) 32
Beyond the age of 22 1

Q: Which opinion is closest to yours about the cost of child
rearing?

Support from the local community is required for child rearing, so
the public burden should be increased 53
Individuals should be responsible for child rearing, so the public
burden can be kept at the current level 42

Polling methodology: The survey was conducted Dec. 5-6 on a
face-to-face basis. For the survey, a total of 3,000 persons were
chosen from among the nation's registered voting population on a
stratified two-stage random-sampling basis. Valid respondents
totaled 1,893. In their breakdown, males accounted for 47 PERCENT
and females 53 PERCENT .

ROOS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

UN: Decades Of Health Gains At Risk In Brazil Due To COVID-19

Although COVID-19 cases are declining in Brazil, the pandemic is putting decades of public health gains there at risk, the head of the World Health Organization ( WHO ) said on Friday. With global attention and support focused this week ... More>>

UN Report: Myanmar Approaching Point Of Economic Collapse

The turmoil following the military coup in Myanmar, coupled with the impact of COVID-19 could result in up to 25 million people – nearly half of the country’s population, living in poverty by early next year, a United Nations report said on Friday. That ... More>>

World Vision: India’s Second Wave Shows The Global Fight Against COVID-19 Is Far From Won

As India’s COVID-19 daily infection rates reach devastating levels, international aid agency World Vision has warned that the world is nowhere near defeating this virus and some nations are yet to face their worst days. Andrew Morley, World Vision ... More>>

Focus On: UN SDGs

UN: Learning From COVID-19, Forum To Highlight Critical Role Of Science, Technology And Innovation In Global Challenges

New York, 4 May —To build on the bold innovations in science, technology and innovations that produced life-saving solutions during the COVID-19 pandemic, the UN will bring together experts to highlight measures that can broaden the development and deployment ... More>>

What COVID-19 Has Taught Us: “Healthcare Can No Longer Exist Without Technology”

A grandmother in a village in the Gambia should have the same quality of life and access to healthcare they deserve as in New York or London. Photo: InnovaRx Global Health Start-up Works To Bridge Healthcare Gap In The Gambia By: Pavithra Rao As ... More>>

UN News: Motherhood On The Brink In Yemen

War, a humanitarian crisis, a looming famine, a health system close to collapse and the deepening impact of the COVID-19 pandemic have led to a “catastrophic situation” in which a woman dies in childbirth every two hours in Yemen, according to the UN ... More>>