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POLITICS: Japanese P.M. Proposes Changes to Japans Constitution

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posted on Jan, 4 2005 @ 06:11 AM
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Japan's pacifist constitution which has not been altered since WW2 is being submitted to an array of important changes proposed by P.M. Koizumi. He has stated the changes will allow Japan to play a larger role in world affairs.
 



www.abc.net.au
It renounces the use of force to resolve international disputes and limits Japan's military to defensive operations.

The Government wants Japan to play a greater role in world affairs and is keen to revise the constitution.

Mr Koizumi says he will release some proposals for change in the second half of the year, although he does not expect any actual revisions will be made for at least two years.


Please visit the link provided for the complete story.


Well this is all very interesting. When Japan decided to deploy troops in Iraq, that decision cost Koizumi a lot of trust within Japan. And now he wants to change the constitution. Also, who knows if a future government will or won't reverse the changes.

[edit on 4-1-2005 by sanctum]




posted on Jan, 4 2005 @ 10:17 AM
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I cant see why Koizumi would want to modify the constitution to apparently allow Japanese troops to engage in unprovoked combat (i.e. international coalitions). Its an unpopular idea in Japan and the kind of action it would allow is unpopular in most of the civilised world.

There must be some very large carrot being dangled infront of the Japanese government to make them tinker with a very noble constitution. Extended economic benefits from the IMF? From the US?

[edit on 4-1-2005 by subz]



posted on Jan, 4 2005 @ 10:58 AM
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Originally posted by subz
There must be some very large carrot being dangled infront of the Japanese government to make them tinker with a very noble constitution. Extended economic benefits from the IMF? From the US?


I think the government of Japan wants to be on the UN security council but they were told they couldn't be a member unless they changed their pacifist constitution.

Here's an article on the issue:

Japan Times (July 23, 2004)
WASHINGTON (Kyodo) U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage told a Japanese lawmaker Wednesday that the war-renouncing Article 9 of Japan's Constitution is becoming an obstacle to strengthening the Japan-U.S. alliance.

Armitage indicated Japan must revise the Constitution and play a greater military role for international peace if it wants to become a permanent U.N. Security Council member, Hidenao Nakagawa, chairman of the Diet Affairs Committee of the governing Liberal Democratic Party, told reporters after meeting with Armitage.



posted on Jan, 4 2005 @ 11:15 AM
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Originally posted by subz
I cant see why Koizumi would want to modify the constitution to apparently allow Japanese troops to engage in unprovoked combat (i.e. international coalitions). Its an unpopular idea in Japan and the kind of action it would allow is unpopular in most of the civilised world.

There must be some very large carrot being dangled infront of the Japanese government to make them tinker with a very noble constitution.

You mean the one the US wrote for them after invading and conquering and democratizing japan?


Extended economic benefits from the IMF? From the US?

Without military power, a country cannot engage in serious international politics, power politics. Koz apparently thinks that Japan can do some good in the world and needs an ability to project its military to do that.

Also, a military is in the better interests of the japanese. They are directly threatened by North Korea and China. Their lack of military power means that their security is up to other people, like the US. He probably figures that the japanese should be more independent of the US, so that when the interests of japan and the US don't agree, japan can act in its own best interests.

I heard on the news the other day that japan had donated a huge sum to the tsunami releif efforts, a sum large enough to indicate that they were intersted in becoming more involved internationally.

Besides, think about it, Japan is a modern, liberal, democratic and open society. Why shouldn't they have more influence on the world stage, over, say, iran or indonesia?



posted on Jan, 4 2005 @ 11:20 AM
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the war-renouncing Article 9 of Japan's Constitution is becoming an obstacle to strengthening the Japan-U.S. alliance.

I have to say that I think this is not in the best interests of the united states. Just like the japanese have no reason to leave their security up to the americans, the americans have no reason to leave their security to the Japanese. Fascist Japan was very powerful and had designs on conquering asia and the pacific islands, and could ostenstibly be a direct threat to the US, or more likely a player that is too powerful to control, one that might oppose the US at critical times (like say France and Germany). I suppose in the end its a cost benefit consideration. The Australians can run things in their part of the world, and it would certianly be beneficial to have a more powerful Japan assuming a greater role in the defense of taiwan, stabilization of southeast asia, and deterring the North Koreans, but what happens if the Japanese get that responsibility, and then decide that they don't want to support a free taiwan, or defend South Korea from the north? Will the US even be able to intervene in an area that Japan has assumed responsibility for?



posted on Jan, 4 2005 @ 12:51 PM
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Nygdan, in my opinion Japan is doing the World a greater service now than it would with a constitution that allowed it to engage in War. It shows that a country can survive and flourish economically (until the early ninties atleast) and culturally without the need to sabre rattle.

If more countries had constitutions like the American imposed constitiution that Japan now enjoys think how different the world might be today.

Force shouldnt really be the only card to play and so far Japan has showed this to be true.



posted on Jan, 4 2005 @ 01:18 PM
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How has japan showed that force isn't the only card to be played?
Do you read history? have you ever looked at where the US has major concentrations of troops? noone has messed with Japan because The US has a whole load of troops there and would absolutelly tear the crap out of anyone that tried to touch them.
What you are seeing now with elements in Japan wanting to change their constitution is not a carrot being offered but two sticks waiting to swing at the japanese pinata.
Here are the motivations I would say that are leading to this push:
1. The US is no longer really capable of leaving troops to protect Japan nor are we capable of paying the bill on defending Japan. We shouldn't have to, and in light of us getting ourselves into some messes militarilly the boys in DC have decided to let Japan know that counting on US troops could be a mistake if there were an incident.

2. North Korea: Kim Il Jong is a nut and there is some bad blood going way back between Korea and japan.

3. China: What can I say would you be comfortable with that giant so close to you? Especially if you had fought multiple wars with them already?



posted on Jan, 5 2005 @ 07:27 AM
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astral_ice,

Obviously im talking about post-WW2 Japan.



posted on Jan, 5 2005 @ 07:43 AM
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Japan can huff and puff as much as she likes but I cannot see the international community going along with a revival of Japanese militarism.

Things are bad enough in that part of Asia without Japan starting to deploy troops in the region and throw her weight around, again.

China suffered enormously and horrendously at Japanese hands - as did Korea - to call it "bad blood" is to understate the case cruelly.

Japan attacked and occupied China and Korea as if as of right, Japan killed millions of Chinese, some estimates talk of 20million civillians and 1.5million of their armed forces (a holocaust utterly forgotten), used huge numbers of Chinese people to test biological warfare, to dissect alive (deliberately without any anaesthetic) and generally treated the populations of Korea and China as mere playthings, human garbage.

Frankly I think the Japanese government should shut their mouths keep their wallets open and hope the rest of the world keeps quiet about what they got away with (there was nothing like the Nuremberg trials in relation to the war in the pacific).

China and Nth Korea do not actually 'threaten' Japan in any meaningful sense. They are not about to attack Japan.

Japan is the one who treated China and Korea abominably, they should be thankfull no-one visited retribution upon them.


[edit on 5-1-2005 by sminkeypinkey]



posted on Jan, 5 2005 @ 08:05 AM
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Originally posted by subz
It shows that a country can survive and flourish economically (until the early ninties atleast) and culturally without the need to sabre rattle.

To be fair, they enjoy the protection of the United States for that. On the other hand, their allowed a military force that can defend them.

But honestly that force couldn't even stop godzilla or even rodan, so I don't know how effective it can really be.


astral ice
North Korea

Bad blood such as kidnapping japanese citizens and using them to instruct korean spys on how to blend into japan.

[quoe]sminkey pinkey
I cannot see the international community going along with a revival of Japanese militarism.

It is rather disconcerting to say the least. Many americans still won't let their guard down on the japanese because of pearl harbour.

Japan is the one who treated China and Korea abominably

All too true, and this is something to keep in mind. However, it would've been interesting if japan had somehow been able to keep its continental empire after the war, and if those regions were like japan today. I don't think that thats workable anyway, but still.



posted on Jan, 5 2005 @ 08:07 AM
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I don't think it's really "right" to blame the current Japan for things that happened in WWII. There are a couple of reasons I say that...

The Japan of today, and it's current government are entirely different now. Different people, too...they really didn't personally have anything to do with what happened in the past. The pitfalls of holding a grudge like that can be seen by looking at the Palestinians, and the Israelis. They don't even remember why they didn't want to share anymore. But people are still dying, because of the past.
99.9% of Americans hold absolutely no grudge against people from the "Southern States" that attempted to secede during the American Civil War. Because the people that lived during that time are DEAD now, and the world has changed. It's like me walking up to a Japanese gentleman, and saying "I hate you, ya bastard, because your grandfather tried to kill mine!". The poor guy that just got verbally assaulted by me had nothing to do with it.

Is there something I'm missing, or am I right? I really am curious to see what others think of this...



posted on Jan, 5 2005 @ 08:25 AM
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I don't think it's really "right" to blame the current Japan for things that happened in WWII.

You are absolutely right. The racism involved here was taught by the previous generation, and has been carried on.

I think that the Japanese are trying to consolidate an allegiance to American with their constitional alterations.
And that may well benefit America as much as it does Japan.
Japan, America and Australia have broken away from the U.N during the recent tsunami relief efforts. This 'friendship' is, I believe, a lot deeper than one would at first realise.



posted on Jan, 5 2005 @ 09:19 AM
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Originally posted by Ghaleon4
The Japan of today, and it's current government are entirely different now. Different people, too...they really didn't personally have anything to do with what happened in the past.
Is there something I'm missing, or am I right? I really am curious to see what others think of this...

Very true! Today the Japanese are not the same sword wielding kamakazi lunatics that we think them to be. Pearl Harbor was a long time ago and what the Japanese did then was wrong but that doesnt give us an excuse to take it out on the present generation of Japanese who, as the recent Tsunami has shown are a very giving and kind people. Also the Japanese have shown the world that a big military doesn't essentially dictate more political power and a violent conflict isn't always the most effective method to solve a dispute. - Ex: India has a huge military but its international image is nowhere close to Japan's, this is because Japan's economic position in the world today has given it the ability to influence nations to make amends with the threat of economic sanctions and influencing global opinion against the nation.
Koizumi want to play the strategist's card by going through with the US request and by neglecting public opinion in Japan, also the Japanese people have seen the effects of getting mixed up with all the political maneuvering Koizumi is doing[ Be.ings of Japanese workers in IRAQ! ]. I think that the US can correct the situation if it wanted to by promising Japan the missile shield as most Japanese who support Koizumi's proposals are afraid of the "Korean missile crisis", once that is taken care I think Koizumi will find no support for his proposals in Japan.
I think he will call this a political move to further advance relations with the Bush administration. BTW wasn't Koizumi confident that Bush would win the election and supported him publicly, wonder what Koizumi would have done if Kerry was president!- Hmm, must be some ulterior motive behind the scenes, is their some Koizumi- Bush plan for a NWO ??

IAF..



posted on Jan, 5 2005 @ 10:37 AM
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Originally posted by Ghaleon4
I don't think it's really "right" to blame the current Japan for things that happened in WWII.

Why not, the emperor is still there, as are others who planned and participated in the attack.



The pitfalls of holding a grudge like that can be seen by looking at the Palestinians, and the Israelis.

I wouldn't argue that a grudge against the nation of japan for pearl harbour is a good thing, nor that the Japanese are inherently culturally imperialists, certainly not anymore than say, the germans.



99.9% of Americans hold absolutely no grudge against people from the "Southern States" that attempted to secede during the American Civil War.

Curiously enough I was just in a thread about this very subject.

Because the people that lived during that time are DEAD now, and the world has changed. It's like me walking up to a Japanese gentleman, and saying "I hate you, ya bastard, because your grandfather tried to kill mine!".
More to the point, the people that are alive from back then tend to not harbour grudges against the very soldiers they fought against. Well, not the guys on the batan death march, or the ones in pearl harbour, and I'd think that most people in Nanking absolutely loath anything japanese, but you get the point.


I really am curious to see what others think of this...

From what I understand the antinipon position here is that the japanese are an agressive people (some would pretend its biological, others would say its cultural) and that their culture is as agressive and proficient today as it was a mere 50 years ago. I personally don't see much reason to support this type of idea. However, I also do have to be wary about effectively allowing another country to become extremely powerful and start meddling in world affairs.



posted on Jan, 5 2005 @ 02:37 PM
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I don't see any of this as being about grudges, just being realistic.

You (as a nation) try suffering several millions dead at the hands of those who could hardly have treated you worse and see how you feel. You cannot just ignore those feelings as unreasonable.......and you cannot just expect those countries to feel nothing as they see those crimes effectively ignored, belittled and forgotten, especially by ex-allies.

As for any German parallels?

If Germany were talking about becoming a major regional military power you would see many many people across Europe getting very upset at the very thought of it.

The kind of hurt Germany and Japan visited on their neighbours takes more than a single generation to fade.



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