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2017-01-09 09:26:57

真珠湾慰霊訪問は日米関係強固の総仕上げ Memorial Visit to Pearl ・・・


真珠湾慰霊訪問は日米関係強固の総仕上げ 新時代を迎える可能性
Memorial Visit to Pearl Harbor Cements U.S.-Japanese Relations
Outlook for New Era




【ニッポンの新常識】Common Knowledge Revisited 98


 Happy New Year to all our readers. At the end of last year, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and U.S. President Obama together paid their respects at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii. They emphasized the power of amicable reconciliation 75 years after the attack on Pearl Harbor, but I had a slightly different impression.



 When the second Abe cabinet was formed in December 2012, Obama clearly viewed it with a wary eye. His pro-Chinese and pro-Korean advisers probably put the idea in his head that Abe was right-wing and must be viewed with caution.



 However, of late the U.S. side has gained a better understanding, and whenever the two leaders meet they always emphasize the importance and strength of the ties between the two countries. It is as if they are trying to get through to the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and Korea the futility of continuing all their political maneuvering in trying to break down the trust between the U.S. and Japan. The memorial service in Pearl Harbor seems like the culmination of that evolution.



 Donald Trump will be inaugurated as the next U.S. President on January 20th. He probably will not change the U.S. hardline policy toward the PRC. He may even be entertaining thoughts of trying to break up the PRC just as President Reagan brought about the fall of the Soviet Union. By contrast, it’s highly probable that U.S.-Japanese ties will grow even stronger, ushering in a new era of U.S. Japanese relations.



 Looking back through history, the curtain rose on U.S.-Japan relations with the “gunboat diplomacy” of Admiral Perry’s armada in the mid-nineteenth Century, and in 1858 the Treaty of Amity and Commerce (United States–Japan) was signed under threat of military force.



 It was an inequitable agreement providing consular jurisdiction and most-favored nation status only to the U.S., and not allowing for Japanese customs autonomy. Thereafter Japan concluded similarly inequitable agreements with several European nations.



 Meiji-Era Japanese considered the inequitable agreements to be a national disgrace and put their hearts and souls into getting them dissolved. Enactment of the Meiji Constitution was one of those actions taken to get the inequitable agreements dissolved. Finally, in the latter part of the Meiji Era inequitable trade agreements were dissolved.



 Now in the Heisei Era, Mr. Trump wants to remedy agreements which are unfavorable to the U.S., and Prime Minister Abe has been working hard for a long time to resolve inequities. It goes without saying that what I am referring to here is the Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security between Japan and the United States of America.



 The old Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security between Japan and the United States of America, which was signed individually by then-Prime Minister Shigeru Yoshida on the sidelines of the signing of the San Francisco Treaty of Peace with Japan in 1951, was overwhelmingly favorable to the United States. The U.S. had no duty to defend Japan and secured the right to maintain bases in Japan following the end of the occupation.



 In point of fact, in 1953 when South Korea seized Takeshima, a part of Shimane Prefecture, and in 1957 when the Soviet Union Border Guard landed on and took effective control of Kaigarajima, an island in the Habomai chain, which in turn is a part of a Hokkaido, the U.S. did nothing.



 The unilateral defense obligation of the U.S. military was first included in Article 5 of the revised security treaty concluded in 1960 by then-Prime Minister Nobusuke Kishi, Prime Minister Abe’s grandfather. However, this was clearly just a temporary emergency measure to Kishi, who envisioned a new autonomously established constitution. Japan has now neglected this issue for over 56 years.



 Not only Meiji Era but also Taisho and Showa Era Japanese people must consider this, too, as a national disgrace.









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2016-12-20 10:44:22

トランプ人気の秘密はタブーに挑むところTrump’s Popularity Stems from


Trump’s Popularity Stems from Breaking Taboos

Like the Frank and Outspoken Statements of Beat Takeshi



【ニッポンの新常識】Common Knowledge Revisited 97


One reason that the next U.S. President Donald Trump was able to garner the enthusiasm and support of the U.S. people was because he didn’t fear braking taboos and engaging in criticism.


During a recent program in which we appeared together, military commentator Kazuhiko Inoue commented that Trump was like the innocent child in the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale “The Emperor’s New Clothes” who exclaimed “The Emperor is naked!”


Without any regard for taboos, Trump expresses the true feelings which most people cannot express once they become an adult. When they hear Trump’s frank and outspoken criticisms, the American people who have had it up to here with the political correctness which was forced upon them during the Obama administration feel liberated. This is like the frank and outspoken statements made by Beat Takeshi.


There are those who mock this as “grandstanding,” but it has already had a significant ripple effect.


Although by any kind of reasonable observation, the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and the Republic of China (Taiwan) are separate countries, the PRC insists that Taiwan is an integral part of “One China.”



The PRC’s position is a lie to save face as can be seen by a cool-headed look at history and the current reality. However, the PRC only maintains diplomatic relations with countries which accept this lie as the truth.


America, which wants to profit from the enormous Chinese market, went along with this lie and severed diplomatic relations with Taiwan. In addition, it agreed in 1979 not to formally treat Taiwan as a country. During the 36 years since then, there have been no direct conversations between the leaders of the U.S. and Taiwan.


However, Trump broke the long precedent by answering a congratulatory telephone call from President Tsai Ing-wen and speaking with her directly. In addition, he laid it bare by proclaiming “Why should the U.S. be bound by ‘One China’ if they don’t agree on trade issues?”


The PRC lost face once again, but Trump may also deal with not only Taiwan but also the Tibet and Uighur problems in unprecedented fashion. This is something to look forward to.


His statement during the presidential campaign to the effect that “The U.S. must defend Japan, but Japan doesn’t need to defend the U.S. That’s unfair!” also broke the taboos about post-war U.S.-Japan relations. For better or worse, a realization of the importance of Japan’s self-reliant defense and the amendment of Article 9 of the Constitution have taken on a new sense of urgency.


The issue of amending Article 9 of the Constitution was discussed when I appeared on “Live TV Until Morning” (TV Asahi) and “Soko Made Itte Iinkai NP” (Yomiuri TV) recently, and almost all of the participants were in favor amending Article 9.


The post-war regime which was set up after World War II by and for the victorious countries is now, after 71 years, in serious structural fatigue. It must be dismantled and restructured. 2017 will be the first step toward that goal.






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2016-12-13 09:32:20

民進党や共産党は政争の具に利用したいだけ Democratic Party and Commun



Democratic Party and Communist Party Only Trying to Make Political Capital
Issues and Solutions on Casino Bill and Buzzwords-of-the-Year Contest




【ニッポンの新常識】Common Knowledge Revisited 96

夕刊フジの当コラムなどを再構成した拙著『トランプ大統領が嗤う 日本人の傾向と対策』(産経新聞出版)が12日発売される。
My book compiling previous columns in Fuji Evening News and Sankei Newspaper titled “Japanese Issues and Solutions for President Trump to Ponder” (Sankei Newspaper Publishing) will be published on December 12th.


A reading of the introduction and Chapter 1 will clearly show that my assessment of President-elect Donald Trump evolved 180 degrees from the early primary election season through the general election, a fact which even I found quite interesting.


Enough for advertisement. Today I want to take a look at “Japanese Issues and Solutions” drawn from recent events.


It appears that the Integrated Resort Facilities Promotion Bill (IR) will pass the extraordinary diet session. The media is, however, for the most part opposed to legalizing casinos.



The Yomiuri Newspaper editorial on December 1st wrote that “A growth policy predicated on the expectation that people addicted to gambling and foreign tourists will squander money while not taking into account the misery and misfortune of other people is not healthy.” This appears to be a sound argument, but by this logic are not the stock market, the foreign exchange market, and the national lottery also unhealthy?


I am not necessarily in favor of legalizing casinos, but without the concepts of “squandering of money,” “survival of the fittest,” and “zero-sum,” capitalism cannot exist. I am not in favor of focusing only on the negative aspects without considering any of the possible benefits.


The Democratic Party (DP) and Japan Communist Party (JCP) offer criticisms to the effect that “Gambling addiction will increase” or “Is the intent for Japan to become a gambling empire?”


However, gambling is already legalized for bicycle races or horse races. While categorized for convenience as “entertainment,” pachinko [pinball or slot machine] parlors in fact exist in front of every major station throughout the country, and on weekday mornings college students, housewives, and others are lined up to await the opening time.


In other words, Japan is already a gambling empire with a high rate of gambling addiction. Unless the DP and JCP are prepared to advocate “the prohibition of conversion of pachinko gains to cash” or “strengthening regulation of public gambling,” their opposition to the IR Bill is a mere hypocritical political stand play.


It was in the news on the internet that “No Child Care: Japan Drop Dead” was listed in the top ten winners of the “New Words and Buzzwords-of-the-Year” sponsored by You-Can.


Personality Takeshi Tsuruno received strong support when he tweeted that he was “sad to hear Japan Drop Dead.”


In 2014, “collective self-defense” and “No way, absolutely not” tied for the title. I think the sponsors intended for these two to be read consecutively.


In 2015, “Cannot Accept Abe Politics” and “SEALDs” [communist student activist group] were in the top ten. Judging from the strong negative reaction on the internet to the political entries for this year, the image of the main sponsor of this competition continues to slip.


Looking back, in 1986 “Award for Supporting Abolition of Unpleasant Words” and “Land Speculation; Buy Low” were chosen. I think this would be the appropriate award for “Drop Dead Japan.”







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