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Cablegate: Daily Summary of Japanese Press 02/05/10

DE RUEHKO #0242/01 0382256
P 072256Z FEB 10




E.O. 12958: N/A



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(1) Okinawa governor blasts FM Okada's remark on possible continued
use of Futenma base (Asahi)

(2) LDP in Okinawa Assembly unanimously agrees to submit proposal
for relocating Futenma airfield out of prefecture to regular session
(Okinawa Times)

(3) Association of municipalities in central Okinawa asks government
to amend SOFA (Okinawa Times)

(4) Foundation of support for Governor Nakaima in upcoming
gubernatorial election shaken (Okinawa Times)

(5) Priority must be given to implementation of Japan-U.S. agreement

(6) Editorial: U.S. defense program - The growing importance of
strengthening the Japan-U.S. alliance (Yomiuri)

(7) Lingering calls for DPJ Secretary General Ozawa to give an
account (Nikkei)

(Corrected copy) Decision on SDF dispatch to Haiti to be made on
Feb. 5. (Nikkei)

(8) Political Cartoons (Asahi, Mainichi)


(1) Okinawa governor blasts FM Okada's remark on possible continued
use of Futenma base

12:40, February 5, 2010

At his regular news conference on the morning of Feb. 5, Okinawa
Governor Hirokazu Nakaima commented on Foreign Minister Katsuya
Okada's recent mention of the possibility of the continued use of
the Futenma Air Station. He voiced the following criticism: "I
wonder if he is abandoning the policy. It doesn't really make sense
at all."

Nakaima also made the following remarks on the Futenma issue: "The
whole process started from the fact that (the Futenma base) is
dangerous and it produces terrible noise." "If he is saying that it
is possible not to do anything about the problem, does this mean
that he has no confidence at all (in the process of identifying a
relocation site) or he has no intention to deal with this issue
squarely? It is rather incomprehensible."

With regard to statements by Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirofumi Hirano
and others about "starting from zero in the search for the most
appropriate relocation site," Nakaima said: "What does 'starting
from zero' really mean? I would really like to hear a definition of
it one of these days," expressing his distrust of the government's

(2) LDP in Okinawa Assembly unanimously agrees to submit proposal
for relocating Futenma airfield out of prefecture to regular session

TOKYO 00000242 002 OF 008

OKINAWA TIMES (Page 2) (Excerpts)
February 5, 2010

The Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), the largest group among the
ruling parties in the Okinawa Prefectural Assembly, held a plenary
meeting on Feb. 4 and unanimously decided to submit a letter of
opinion and a resolution seeking the relocation of the U.S. Marine
Corp's Futenma Air Station out of the prefecture to a regular
session of the assembly set to be convened on Feb. 10. The party
will now begin to coordinate views on the draft with the opposition
side. Officials of the LDP Okinawa Chapter and the New Komeito's
head office in Okinawa Prefecture on the same day met with Governor
Hirokazu Nakaima and urged him to change his policy and support the
relocation of the Futenma facilities out of the prefecture. Nakaima
steered clear of making any comment on the issue, just noting: "We
have yet to see what proposal the government will make and how the
situation will develop. Changes are occurring (as a result of) the
Nago mayoral election. We are holding discussions in preparation for
the opening of the assembly."

Referring to the ruling and opposition camps holding talks with an
eye toward the adoption of the resolution and the letter of opinion
by the Prefectural Assembly, Nakaima praised the move, saying, "My
position is that it is desirable to relocate the Futenma facilities
out of the prefecture. Nothing has changed in that regard."

(3) Association of municipalities in central Okinawa asks government
to amend SOFA

OKINAWA TIMES (Page 2) (Excerpts)
February 5, 2010


Mitsuo Gima, chairman of the association of municipalities in
central Okinawa and mayor of Urasoe, on Feb. 4 met with Deputy Chief
Cabinet Secretary Kinya Takino at the Prime Minister's Official
Residence (the Kantei) and handed a letter of request, agreed on by
the association in January, seeking an amendment to the Japan-U.S.
Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA). Takino reportedly replied, "I
will convey your request to the prime minister and the chief cabinet
secretary without fail, and do my utmost."

Gima on the same day also submitted similar requests to Senior Vice
Foreign Minister Koichi Takemasa, Senior Vice Cabinet Office
Minister Atsushi Oshima and Parliamentary Defense Secretary Daiso
Kusuda. The three officials each expressed their understanding and
pledged to convey the request to their ministers.

(4) Foundation of support for Governor Nakaima in upcoming
gubernatorial election shaken

OKINAWA TIMES (Page 2) (Excerpts)
February 5, 2010


With the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), the largest ruling party in
the Okinawa Prefectural Assembly, having decided to adopt a
resolution and a letter of opinion seeking the relocation of the
U.S. Marine Corps' Futenma airfield out of the prefecture and the

TOKYO 00000242 003 OF 008

New Komeito considering adopting a similar stance, there are now no
assembly groups that share with Governor Hirokazu Nakaima a stance
on the Futenma relocation issue. The governor, who has not totally
ruled out the possibility of (accepting) relocation within the
prefecture, will likely find himself on his own in the regular party
representatives' session and general question session during the
prefectural assembly in February.

The governor's stance of not switching his policy to supporting the
relocation of Futenma facilities out of the prefecture could further
aggravate dissatisfaction felt in the ruling parties, which could
shake the foundation of support for him in the upcoming
gubernatorial election.

A senior official of the LDP Okinawa Chapter, who met with Nakaima,
complained: "It is the government that decides the relocation
policy. I wonder why the governor is still adhering to the Henoko
plan." Another official also turned around and said: "We do not care
if a political party and the prefecture have different views. We
will uncompromisingly call on the government to relocate the Futenma
functions out of the prefecture."

The reason that Nakaima is reluctant to make an overall policy
switch is that he is insisting on the removal of the potential
danger of Futenma Air Station. The governor harbors the strong
perception that if he calls for relocation outside the prefecture
and no relocation site is found, he would be held responsible for
making the present situation a permanent facility. However, the
basis of this perception has weakened with the election of a Nago
mayor who opposes relocation to Nago.

(5) Priority must be given to implementation of Japan-U.S.

SANKEI (Page 7) (Full)
February 3, 2010

James E. Auer, Director of the Center for U.S.-Japan Studies and
Cooperation, Vanderbilt University

A team of Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama's administration is
investigating the existence of a purported secret pact allowing U.S.
warships carrying nuclear weapons to pass through Japan's
territorial waters and call at Japanese ports. The investigation
reportedly covers the period since 1960, the year the U.S.-Japan
Security Treaty was revised. The U.S. warships that called at
Japanese ports since 1991 have not carried any strategic nuclear
weapons, so the agreement no longer has practical significance.
Nevertheless, the Hatoyama administration seems to believe that it
has to let the people know the truth.

Professor Reischauer's view

Up until 1991, the U.S. government maintained the policy of neither
confirming nor denying the presence or absence of nuclear weapons
aboard its naval vessels making port calls overseas. This made
extremely certain that Japan was being protected by the U.S. nuclear

The Japanese government's stance until 1991 was that nuclear-armed
U.S. warships were not allowed to enter the country, that the
introduction of nuclear weapons into the country was subject to

TOKYO 00000242 004 OF 008

prior consultations, and that it would always say 'no' to the
introduction of nuclear weapons. But the Soviet Union did not
believe in this stance of Japan. The reason was because saying 'no'
all the time to the introduction of nuclear weapons would diminish
the U.S. deterrent for Japan.

In 1981 professor and former U.S. Ambassador to Japan Edwin
Reischauer told newspaper reporter Yoshihisa Komori that Japan had
agreed in 1960 to allow stopovers by nuclear-armed U.S. ships and
planes without prior consultations. According to opinion polls back
then, a lot of Japanese people believed professor Reischauer's
explanation. This showed their support for the Japan-U.S. alliance
and the U.S. nuclear umbrella.

Professor Reischauer also said to Komori that in order also to
sustain the reliability of the nuclear umbrella, the Japanese
government should let people know the truth. I believe that if
Japanese leaders had done so with courage, the people would have
accepted that explanation.

Three pressing issues

Needless to say, examinations of history might be necessary. But I
want to see the Hatoyama administration make greater efforts to win
public trust about pressing issues rather than to explain to the
people about a policy that has lost its significance.

Of those pressing issues, top priorities are: (1) the difference
between China and the United States as Japan's partner; (2)
fundamental impediments to building an equal Japan-U.S. alliance;
and (3) consideration for Okinawa under the existing base
realignment plan.

On the first point, some experts close to the administration are
saying that Japan, China, and the United States should build equal
trilateral relations (like an equilateral triangle) as the three
major economic powers in the Asia-Pacific region. The realization of
an equilateral relationship would be the worst possible scenario for

While claiming its sovereignty over Japan's Senkaku Islands, China
is planning military expansion by means of nuclear and conventional
weapons with the aim of controlling the waters east of Taiwan with
an eye on oil resources there. Taking up the history issue unfairly
in schools, China is trying to instill anti-Japanese sentiments in
people's minds. In view of this, Japan needs a close military
alliance with the United States and the U.S. nuclear deterrence for
its economic survival and basic security.

On the second point, I do not believe there is anything wrong with
Prime Minister Hatoyama's stance to seek a "more equal Japan-U.S.
alliance." But if he wants to achieve it, Hatoyama must convince the
people that "Japan is entitled to exercise the right to collective
self-defense," as he said before becoming prime minister. That is
because if Japan cannot exercise the right to collective
self-defense, the exceptional Ground, Maritime, and Air Self-Defense
Forces will not be able to work effectively to defend the country in
cooperation with the United States. In view of the prospect that a
combination of the military capabilities of Japan and the United
States can further increase deterrence, a battle by the SDF alone
would be a waste of taxpayers' money.

TOKYO 00000242 005 OF 008

Consideration given to not seeking a new replacement site

Lastly, although the need to alleviate the burden on the people of
Okinawa has been mentioned, there has not been sufficient
explanation on it. Until several months ago, the name Futenma was
hardly known among the Japanese people and researchers on Japan in
the United States, but it is heard frequently. At present, there is
a tremendous misunderstanding in Japan about what was agreed with
the United States, and this misunderstanding might endanger the
security of Japan.

Under the realignment plan based on the Japan-U.S. agreement, the
United States will close down the Futenma Air Station and return it
to Japan along with other bases and land in Okinawa. The United
States will also move some 8,000 Marines to Guam. It has selected a
location on Camp Schwab in Henoko, Nago, as the relocation site for
Futenma. Building a completely new replacement base in Okinawa would
be undesirable for the local residents. The agreement shows the
United States' consideration for avoiding such consequences.

Professor Reischauer said that the Japanese government could have
believed that if it revealed the truth, it would have been able to
obtain the people's understanding. I agree with him.

The Japan-U.S. agreement on U.S. force realignment was reached in
line with the policy not to harm the natural environment or the
country's security, thinking of ways to reduce the burden on
Okinawans. I hope Prime Minister Hatoyama will explain this to the
people once again along with the difference between the United
States and China and the issue of the right to collective

(6) Editorial: U.S. defense program - The growing importance of
strengthening the Japan-U.S. alliance

YOMIURI (Page 3) (Full)
February 3, 2010

Amidst an increasingly severe security environment, the United
States drew up national defense guidelines placing importance on
cooperation with its allies.

The Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR), released by the Department of
Defense (DOD) for the first time under the Obama administration,
cites winning the Afghan and Iraqi wars as the top priorities of its
defense strategy.

The QDR points out the need for the continued strategy of destroying
the Al Qaeda terrorist network, expressing the DOD's determination
to bring the war on terror to a successful conclusion.

In the QDR, the United States pledges to devote all its resources,
including military power and diplomacy, to preventing and deterring
conflicts, while stressing that it will make meticulous preparations
for any emergency.

The 2010 QDR is formulated on the basis of the present situation, in
which the U.S. is facing a great change in the security environment
with the expansion of threats such as the rise of China and India,
terrorism, and nuclear proliferation.

Laying emphasis on responses to diversifying threats, the QDR

TOKYO 00000242 006 OF 008

stresses the need for cooperation with allies and friendly nations.
Behind this is the U.S.'s perception that its military superiority
has relatively declined.

The QDR indicates a strong sense of alarm toward China's military
buildup policy, which lacks transparency, as did the previous QDR.
Citing China's ballistic missiles, fast-attack boats, cyber-attack
capability, and the development and deployment of anti-satellite
weapons, the QDR points out that many questions about China's
long-term intentions remain.

The QDR also refers to the fear that the instability or collapse of
nuclear-armed countries would increase proliferation at a stroke.
This is because the United States is concerned about the rampancy of
international terrorist organizations, North Korea's nuclear testing
and long-range ballistic missile launches, and Iran's nuclear

The expansion in the variety of threats could weaken the U.S.
military's forward deployment and nuclear deterrence. It could have
a serious impact on Japan's security. Close coordination between
Japan and the United States is necessary.

The Japan-U.S. director general-level talks on deepening the
bilateral alliance have begun in Tokyo, on the occasion of the 50th
anniversary of the revised Japan-U.S. Security Treaty.

It is important to reflect in the Japan-U.S. talks the QDR's
perception that China's military buildup and North Korea's nuclear
programs are threats. In light of the Chinese military's rapid
modernization, it is indispensable for Japan's Self-Defense Forces
(SDF) and the U.S. military to make efforts for strengthening
cooperation and deterrence.

The QDR sets out a policy of steadily carrying out the realignment
of U.S. forces in Japan and implementing the long-term stationing of
U.S. forces in Japan and their reorganization in Guam.

It is important that Japan and the U.S. share the same perception on
the security environments in Asia and the world. It is also
important for the two countries to deepen strategic dialogue on
looking into role-sharing and cooperation.

At the same time, in order to allow such dialogue, settling the
Futenma relocation issue by May is absolutely necessary. Japan can
put off a conclusion no longer.

(7) Lingering calls for DPJ Secretary General Ozawa to give an

NIKKEI (Page 3) (Full)
February 4, 2010

Lower House member Tomohiro Ishikawa, arrested over fund management
body Rikuzan-kai's alleged violation of the Political Funds Control
Law in its purchase of land, will likely be indicted on Feb. 4.
Although Ozawa is unlikely to be indicted, since Ishikawa is a
former secretary of Ozawa, his political responsibility will remain.
The focus is now shifting to whether Ozawa, the de facto top leader
of the government and the ruling parties, will resign or not.

Ozawa during a press conference on the 1st said: "If public

TOKYO 00000242 007 OF 008

prosecutors press charges against me, my responsibility would be
heavy." People took that as a hint he would step down as secretary
general with possibility of his being indicted without arrest in
mind. However, the view that Ozawa would not be indicted spread on
the 3rd, the day before the deadline for prosecutors to either
release from detention or charge Ishikawa. DPJ members, who had been
waiting for the outcome of the investigation, began acting, based on
the precondition that Ozawa would not be indicted.

For instance, Land, Infrastructure and Transport Minister Seiji
Maehara, one of the "seven magistrates" who are distancing
themselves from Ozawa, on the third supported Ozawa's remaining in
office as secretary general, although he had been talking about
Ozawa's resignation. Members of a group led by Deputy Finance
Minister Yoshihiko Noda also unanimously agreed to give top priority
to party unity at their meeting on the same night. A certain deputy
minister stressed: "If Mr. Ozawa is not indicted, it is not
necessary for him to quit. Rather, it would prove there were no

There is, however, another view. Remarked a mid-ranking lawmaker:
"Even if Ozawa is not indicted, he will bear moral responsibility if
his former secretaries are indicted. At a press conference in late
January Ozawa acknowledged that he is responsible as the head (of
the political fund Rikuzan-kai). There is concern that if he
continues to serve as DPJ secretary general, the opposition parties
will continue to pursue him in the Diet session, which would inflate
public distrust in politics, and "the public would take a harsh view
of the party," as a veteran lawmaker said. Regarding Ishikawa, who
will likely be indicted, many are of the following opinion expressed
by a high government official: "He will not resign as a lawmaker,
but he might voluntarily quit the party. Party executives are
refraining from looking into disciplinary action against Ishikawa,
as it could lead to Ozawa's resignation. How Ishikawa takes
responsibility could be up to Ozawa.

Ozawa did not resign as head of the DPJ when his first state-funded
secretary was arrested and indicted over the political funds
donation scandal involving Nishimatsu Construction Co. in March last
year. He stepped down six weeks later on the pretext of
strengthening party unity. The perfect timing of the replacement of
the party head boosted public support ratings for the party,
resulting in its victory in the Lower House election.

A close aide to Ozawa said: "If he is not indicted, he will not take
responsibility by resigning as secretary general." The aide also
made this observation: "There is a possibility of his choosing to
step down at some point in order for the DPJ to win the upcoming
Upper House election, pretending that his resignation is not
directly connected to the scandal."

(Corrected copy) Decision on SDF dispatch to Haiti to be made on
Feb. 5.

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
February 2, 2010

The government decided yesterday to make a final decision on Feb. 5
at a cabinet meeting on its plan to dispatch a Self-Defense Forces
(SDF) engineering unit to earthquake-hit Haiti to join the UN
peacekeeping operations (PKO). Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa
will then issue an order on the 5th to dispatch the SDF unit. The

TOKYO 00000242 008 OF 008

SDF unit is expected to comprise about 350 members, mainly Ground
Self-Defense Force personnel.


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