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Cablegate: Tokyo Media Reaction - North Korea and War On

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DE RUEHKO #0076 0130219
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P 130219Z JAN 10
FM AMEMBASSY TOKYO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 8688
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RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
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INFO RUEHFK/AMCONSUL FUKUOKA 8295
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RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 2623
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RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL 9287
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 8709
RHEHAAA/NSC WASHDC

UNCLAS TOKYO 000076

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 - NORTH KOREA AND WAR ON
TERRORISM

1. LEAD STORIES: Several broadcasters on Wednesday
morning gave top coverage to the meeting in Honolulu
between Secretary of State Clinton and Foreign Minister
Okada on Tuesday, during which they reportedly affirmed
the start of a bilateral process to deepen the
alliance.

2. "'Reckless Intent' Seen in DPRK Message" On North
Korea's recent statement calling for peace talks among
'concerned parties to the Korean War armistice
agreement,' the liberal Mainichi editorialized (1/13):
"This message apparently contained dangerous intent. In
the first place, it is obvious that Japan would be
excluded [from such talks]. If the 'concerned parties'
are limited strictly to the signatories of the
armistice accord, it would mean an exclusion of South
Korea resulting in tripartite talks only including the
U.S., China, and North Korea. This would be a perfect
setup [for the DPRK] that would disturb the unity among
the U.S., Japan, and South Korea.... It is imperative
to carefully discern Pyongyang's real intent. It is
absolutely necessary to prevent the situation from
progressing in line with a scenario scripted by Kim
Jong Il."

3. "North Korea's Denuclearization Must Come First" The
liberal Tokyo Shimbun insisted in an editorial (1/13):
"[The DPRK statement calling for peace talks] is
apparently part of its intensified 'diplomatic
offensive' of late. However, there is still concern
that the statement was issued in order to deflect
international pressure on North Korea to
denuclearize.... The statement echoed North Korea's
previous line of argument intended to minimize the U.S.
military threat and maintain the 'Kim Jong Il regime.'
However, North Korea has betrayed the trust of the
international community.... The DPRK should take steps
toward denuclearization first before calling for a
peace treaty."

4. "President Obama Adopts Hard Line in Combating
Terrorism" The liberal Asahi wrote from Washington
(1/13): "Following the recent terrorist attacks by al-
Qaeda and its affiliated operatives, the Obama
administration appears to be abandoning its soft
approach on combating terrorism, as seen in proposed
dialogue with the Muslim community and respect for the
human rights of terror suspects. Behind this policy
shift is the American public's deepening concerns about
the U.S. playing a 'cat-and-mouse game' with terrorist
organizations. Calls are even emerging for the
restoration of internationally-condemned measures, such
as inhumane interrogation methods."

ROOS

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