Monday, April 29, 2013

Japan speaks in Washington

In Japan, this is Golden Week. For Washington this means that there will an influx of official visitors from Japan.

The following Cabinet ministers are expected in Washington this week:

Foreign Affairs Minister Kishida Fumio
Education Minister Shimomura Hakubun*
Economics and Trade Minister Motegi Toshimitsu
Defense Minister Onodera Itsunori
Public Safety Commissioner Furuya Keiji* (visited Yasukuni 4/21/13)
Minister of State for Science and Technology Policy Yamamoto Ichita
Senior Vice Minister of Cabinet Office Nishimura Yasutoshi

*signed ad criticizing the validity of Comfort Women claims in the November 4, 2012 New Jersey Star Ledger. Minister Furuya also visited Palisades Park, New Jersey in May 2012 to ask the mayor to remove a memorial to the Comfort Women.

Here are the public events on Japan we know of and will update as needed:

ABENOMICS AND THE FUTURE OF U.S.-JAPAN RELATIONS: JAPAN’S GROWTH STRATEGY AND ITS IMPACT ON THE U.S. ECONOMY. 4/29, 5:00-6:00pm. Sponsor: US-Japan Research Institute. Speaker: The Honorable Yasutoshi Nishimura, Senior Vice Minister of Cabinet Office.

US-JAPAN ADVANCED SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY SYMPOSIUM: LINEAR COLLIDER COLLABORATION (LCC). 4/30, 1:00-5:30pm, Washington, DC. Sponsor: KEK, the High Energy Accelerator Research Organization; Government of Japan. Keynote Speakers: Minister of Education Hirofumi Shimomura; Member of the House of Representatives Takeo Kawamura, Chair of Diet League to Support ILC; Department of Energy Deputy Secretary Daniel B. Poneman; Japan Innovation Conference Chair Hiroshi Masuda; Executive Office of the President, Physical Sciences Deputy Jerry Blazey; ILC U.S. Regional Chief Mike Harrison . Location: Willard Intercontinental Hotel, 1401 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW. (location given as not mentioned on agenda)

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY TO PROMOTE ECONOMIC GROWTH: A US –JAPAN PUBLIC-PRIVATE FORUM. 4/30, 3:00-5:00pm. Sponsor: Carnegie. Speaker: John P. Holdren, assistant to the president for science and technology, director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, and co-chair of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology; Hakubun Shimomura, Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, and Science and Technology; and Ichita Yamamoto, Minister of State for Science and Technology Policy; Dr. Michiharu Nakamura (President, Japan Science and Technology Agency); Dr. Hidetoshi Kotera (Executive Vice-President for External Strategy, Knowledge & Technology Transfer and Innovation, Kyoto University); Mr. Mitsuhiko Yamashita (Member of the Board and Executive Vice President, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.);Dr. Keiji Kojima (Vice President and Executive Officer/General Manager, Hitachi Ltd., Hitachi Research Laboratory); Dr. Keith R. Yamamoto (Vice Chancellor for Research, UCSF and Executive Vice Dean, School of Medicine); Dr. Charles M. Vest (President, National Academy of Engineering and President Emeritus, Massachusetts Institute of Technology).

INDIA-JAPAN PARTNERSHIP: ITS CHANGING DYNAMICS IN THE POST-COLD WAR YEARS. 5/1, 12:30-1:45pm, Washington, DC. Sponsor: Sigur Center, George Washington University. Speaker: Dr. K.V. Kesavan, specialist in the field of Japanese Studies, distinguished fellow at Observer Research Foundation, New Delhi.

ELEVEN PLUS ONE: JAPAN'S BID TO JOIN THE TRANS-PACIFIC PARTNERSHIP. 5/1, 8:00am-2:00pm. Sponsor: Global Business Dialogue (GBD). Speakers: Ambassador Demetrios Marantis, Acting United States Trade Representative; The Hon. Clayton Yeutter (invited) of Hogan Lovells, Wendy Cutler from the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, Everett Eissenstat from the Senate Finance Committee staff, Nick Giordano of the National Pork Producers Council, Bill Lane of Caterpillar, Paul Neureiter of Amgen.

INNOVATION IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: JOINT DEVELOPMENT WITH THE U.S. AND JAPAN. 5/1, 10:30am-12:40pm, lunch, Washington, DC. Sponsor: US-Japan Research Institute. Speaker: Hakubun Shimomura, Japan’s Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology.

ABDUCTIONS OF JAPANESE CITIZENS BY NORTH KOREA. 5/2, 2:30-5:00pm. Sponsor: Japan Information and Culture Center (JICC), Embassy of Japan. Speakers: Keiji Furuya, Japan’s Minister of State for the Abduction Issues; Ambassador Robert King, US Special Envoy, North Korean Human Rights Issues; Dr. Victor Cha, Senior Advisor and Korea Chair at the Center for Strategic International Studies (CSIS).

THE MAUREEN AND MIKE MANSFIELD FOUNDATION 30TH ANNIVERSARY CAPITOL HILL SYMPOSIUM. 5/3, 9:00am-Noon. Sponsor: Maureen and Mike Mansfield Foundation. Speakers: Walter F. Mondale, former Vice President of the United States and former U.S. Ambassador to Japan; J. Thomas Schieffer, former U.S. Ambassador to Japan; Susan Pharr, Professor of Japanese Politics, Harvard University; Robert Kimmitt, former Deputy Secretary of the Treasury and Under Secretary of State; Kenichiro Sasae, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to the United States of America; Kurt Campbell, Founding Partner, Chairman and CEO, The Asia Group, LLC.

GROWTH, ENERGY, AND ECONOMIC PARTNERSHIP: JAPAN’S CURRENT OBSTACLES AND NEW OPPORTUNITIES. 5/3, 3:00-3:50pm. Sponsor: CNAPS Brookings. Speakers: Toshimitsu Motegi, Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, Government of Japan; Mireya Solís, Senior Fellow and Philip Knight Chair in Japan Studies, Brookings.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Prime Minister of Japan's Schedule March 23-31

March 23, 2013 (Sat)


08:36 Three Hundred Club, a golf course in Chigasaki City, Kawanagawa; Golf with relatives and secretaries

04:56 Home in Tomigaya
06:36 Dinner with Mr. Tatsunori Hara, Manager of Tokyo Yomiuri Giants (baseball team); Mr. Amari, Minister of Economic Revitalization; and Mr. Matsushita, Parliamentary Secretary of Land, Infrastructure, and Transportation
09:14 Home

March 24, 2013 (Sun)

Visit Fukushima Prefecture

06:11 French Restaurant Hotel du Mikuni; dinner with the family of Ms. Kin Birei, an analyst
08:19 Home in Tomigaya

March 25, 2013 (Mon)


09:02 Office
09:11 Mr. Sekou, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary
09:52 Parliament
10:01 Upper House Plenary Session
11:21 Office
11:37 Mr. Hiromitsu Takezaki, Supreme Court Chief Justice

12:02 Mr. Takezaki leaves
02:01 Deputy Foreign Minister Saiki; and Mr. Kouzuki, MoFA European Affairs Bureau Director General
02:37 Mr. Amari, Minister for Economic Revitalization; Mr. Matsumoto, Administrative Vice Minister of Cabinet Office; and Mr. Matsuyama, Deputy Minister of Cabinet Office
03:01 Mr. Furuya, Minister of Disaster Prevention
03:21 Mr. Dick Costolo, President and CEO of Twitter
03:51 Administrative Vice Defense Minister Kanazawa
04:25 Mr. Yamamoto, Minister of Okinawa and Northern Territory Affairs
04:59 LDP Headquarters
05:02 LDP Executives meeting
05:35 Mr. Kouichi Sugiyama, Music Composer
05:50 Office
05:55 Mr. Suga, Chief Cabinet Secretary; Mr. Katou, Mr. Sekou, and Mr. Sugita, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretaries
06:25 Conference call with President Van Rompuy and President Barroso of European Commission
07:17 Conversation with Mr. Shigeo Kitamura, Mr. Tadayoshi Nagashima, and other LDP members who were elected for the Lower House for the first time in 2005 election; LDP Secretary General Ishiba attends
07:43 Conversation with PM’s beat reporters
09:39 Home in Tomigaya

March 26, 2013 (Tue)


07:39 Office
07:47 The Central Disaster Prevention Council
08:09 Ministerial Meeting
08:32 Ministerial Council on the Promotion of Japan as a Tourism-Oriented Country
09:39 Mr. Ihara, MoFA North American Affairs Bureau Director General; and Mr. Nishi, MoD Policy Bureau Director General
10:39 Both leave
10:55 Ambassador Roos of the US; and Senator Bob Corker of the US
11:30 Administrative Vice Foreign Minister Kawai; Deputy Foreign Minister Saiki; and Mr. Sugiyama, MoFA Asia and Oceania Affairs Bureau Director General
11:58 Reconstruction Promotion Committee

01:11 Attend “Joint Memorial Ceremony for Those Who Died in Algerian Plant Terrorist Attack” hosted by Nikki
02:41 LDP headquarters
02:50 Ms. Takaichi, LDP Policy Research Council Director; Mr. Miyazawa, her deputy; and Mr. Mitsuya, Vice Chair
03:25 Office
04:07 Courtesy Call from the President of the National Assembly of the Republic of Cote d'Ivoire, Mr. Guillaume Soro
04:32 Mayor Tomoaki Nakao of Shimonoseki City, Yamaguchi Prefecture
04:44 Mr. Kitamura, Director, Cabinet Intelligence
05:09 Administrative Vice Defense Minister Kanazawa
05:30 Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy
06:40 Meeting ends
07:02 Dinner with Mr. Suga, Mr. Kunio Hatoyama, LDP Lower House member, and others at Restaurant Sagagyu Ginza Kiraku
09:14 Home in Tomigaya

March 27, 2013 (Wed)
08:24 Office
08:31 Extraordinary Ministerial Meeting
08:49 Mr. Sekou, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary
09:29 Mr. Sekou leaves
08:54 Parliament
10:00 Meeting of the House of Councillors Committee on Financial Affairs

12:00 Leave the meeting
12:04 Office
12:05 Mr. Yasuo Kawakami, Board Chair of Chofu Seisakujo
12:17 President Kousuke Obata of Japan Youth Committee
12:26 Mr. Shigetada Inouye, Chief Editor of Mainichi Shimbun
01:20 Mr. Suga, Mr. Katou, Mr. Sekou, and Mr. Sugita, Chief and Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretaries
01:44 Courtesy Call from the External Affairs Minister of India, Mr. Salman Khurshid
02:09 Courtesy Call from the Representatives of the Boy Scouts who Received the Fuji Award
02:25 Courtesy Call from the Head of the Linear Collider Collaboration, Lyn Evans, an International Organization for Linear Colliders
02:40 Mr. Ootani, Deputy Minister of Health, Labour, and Welfare
03:20 Observe the Institute of Advanced Biomedical Engineering and Science
03:55 Tokyo Women University; exchange opinion with patients
04:22 Press interview
04:40 Office
05:22 Mr. Yamamoto, Minister of Science and Technology
05:40 Foreign Minister Kishida; Administrative Vice Foreign Minister Kawai; Deputy Foreign Minister Saiki; and Mr. Sugiyama, MoFA Asia Oceania Affairs Bureau Director General
06:14 Courtesy Call from His Royal Highness Prince Khaled bin Sultan bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
06:37 Mr. Shoutarou Yachi, Cabinet Office Councilor
06:54 Mr. Wataru Wataru, Justice of the International Court of Justice
07:08 Residence; Dinner with Mr. Masayoshi Shintani, LDP Lower House member and others
08:56 Home in Tomigaya

March 28, 2013 (Thu)


07:43 Office
08:17 Mr. Katou, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary
08:55 Parliament
08:59 Lower House Budget Committee

12:11 Office
12:12 Courtesy Call from Yokozuna Sumo Wrestler Hakuho
12:56 Parliament
12:59 Lower House Budget Committee
03:01 Lower House Plenary Session
03:11 Leave the session in the middle
03:14 Office
03:39 Defense Minister Onodera
03:55 Courtesy Call of Mr. Bregier, President and CEO of Airbus
04:23 Mr. Amari, Minister of Economic Revitalization
04:37 Mr. Katou, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary; Deputy Foreign Minister Saiki; Mr. Sugiyama, MoFA; Mr. Yamazaki, Ministry of Finance International Bureau Director General; and Mr. Ueda, METI Trade Policy Director General
05:24 Mr. Katou, Mr. Sugiyama, Mr. Yamazaki, and Mr. Ueda leave
05:27 Mr. Saiki leaves
05:37 Mr. Sugita
05:56 Strategic Headquarters for the Promotion of an Advanced Information and Telecommunications Network Society
06:17 Deputy Prime Minister Aso; and Mr. Furuya, National Public Safety Commission Chief
06:24 Council for Science and Technology Policy
06:32 Receive Recommendations on a Draft Proposal to Revise the Electoral Districts for House of Representatives Members Elected from Single-Seat Constituencies
07:30 Dinner with Mr. Yutaka Asahina, President of Mainichi Shimbun at Japanese Restaurant Kinsui
10:21 Home in Tomigaya

March 29, 2013 (Fri)


07:14 Office
07:15 Mr. Sekou, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary
07:48 Parliament
07:57 Ministerial meeting
08:16 Mr. Sekou
09:00 Upper House Budget Committee

12:36 Office
01:24 Parliament
01:31 Upper House Plenary Session
01:45 Office
02:31 LDP Headquarters
02:31 Photo taking with Upper House election candidates and Saitama Mayoral Election; Mr. Ishiba and Mr. Kawamura election affairs committee chair
03:08 Mr. Kawamura, LDP Election Affairs Committee Chair
03:19 Mr. Ishiba, LDP Secretary General
03:28 Office
04:00 Administrative Vice Foreign Minister Kawai; Deputy Foreign Minister Saiki; and Mr. Miyakawa, MoFA Middle East and African Affairs Bureau Director General
04:30 Mr. Miyakawa leaves
04:31 Mr. Sugiyama, MoFA Asia and Oceania Affairs Bureau Director General, joins
04:40 All leaves
04:45 Mr. Kitamura, Cabinet Intelligence Director
05:11 Mr. Rupert Murdoch, President and CEO of News Corporation
05:47 All leave
06:23 Advisory Council on the Establishment of a National Security Council
07:25 Leave the meeting
07:26 Industrial Competitiveness Council
08:25 Dinner with his secretaries at Restaurant Origami, The Capitol Hotel Tokyu
10:03 Home in Tomigaya

March 30, 2013 (Sat)

First Day of the Prime Minister's Visit to Mongolia

March 31, 2013 (Sun)

Second Day of the Prime Minister's Visit to Mongolia

04:46 Arrive at Haneda Airport
05:20 Home in Tomigaya

Monday in Washington

MOMENTUM BUILDS FOR TRADE PROMOTION AUTHORITY. 4/29, 11:30am-1:00pm. Sponsor: Women in International Trade (WIIT). Speakers: Rachael Leman, Deputy Staff Director, House Rules Committee, Office of Congressman Pete Sessions (TX-32); Nicole Venable, Bockorny Group; Amie Ahanchian, Managing Director, KPGM LLP.

WHY THE UNITED STATES SHOULD ERR ON THE SIDE OF TOO MANY (NOT TOO FEW) NUCLEAR WEAPONS. 4/29, Noon-1:30pm. Sponsor: Elliott School, George Washington University. Speaker: Matt Kroenig, Assistant Professor of Government at George Washington University.

PROSPECTS AND PITFALLS: THE ARAB WORLD TWO YEARS ON. 4/29, Noon-2:00pm. Sponsor: World Bank. Speaker: Marwan Muasher, Vice President for Studies at Carnegie, author, The Arab Center

DEALING WITH NORTH KOREA'S INCREASED BELLIGERENCE. 4/29, Noon-2:00pm. Sponsor: Carnegie. Speakers: L. Gordon Flake, executive director of the Mansfield Foundation; Paul Haenle, director of the Carnegie–Tsinghua Center for Global Policy based at Tsinghua University in Beijing; Jin Canrong, vice president of international relations and a professor at Renmin University’s School of International Studies; Zhang Chuanjie, resident scholar at the Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy; Zhu Feng, professor at Peking University’s School of International Studies. 

TAIWAN'S RESPONSE TO AN EVOLVING SECURITY ENVIRONMENT. 4/29, 2:00-4:15pm. SponsorS: CSIS’s Freeman Chair in China Studies and Brookings’ CNAPS. Speakers: Richard Bush, Senior Fellow and Director, Center for Northeast Asian Policy Studies, The Brookings Institution; Bonnie S. Glaser, Senior Adviser for Asia, Freeman Chair in China Studies, Center for Strategic and International Studies; Andrew N.D. Yang, Vice Minister of National Defense for Policy, Ministry of National Defense, Republic of China (Taiwan); Chia-Sheng Chen, Director, Defense Net Assessment Division, Department of Integrated Assessment, Ministry of National Defense, Republic of China (Taiwan); Phillip Saunders, Director, Center for the Study of Chinese Military Affairs, Institute for National Strategic Studies, National Defense University.

CONSERVATION, CIVIL SOCIETY AND TIBET: A VIEW FROM BEIJING. 4/29, 3:00-4:30pm. Sponsor: Elliot School, GW. Speaker: Liu Jianqiang, Beijing Editor, 

CHINA’S FOREIGN POLICY AND CHINA-US RELATIONS. 4/29, 3:00-4:00pm. Sponsor: Sigur Center and Confucius Institute, GW, Chinese Embassy’s Education Office. Speakers: David Shambaugh, Professor of Political Science and International Affairs; Jingxing Zhou, Political Counselor, Political Office, Chinese Embassy in the U.S.

FUTURE OF U.S.-INDIA RELATIONS: BEYOND THE PLATEAU. 4/29, 3:00-4:00pm. Sponsor: Heritage Foundation and Observer Research Foundation. Speakers: H.E. Nirupama Rao, Ambassador to the United States from India; C. Raja Mohan, Head, Strategic Studies and Distinguished Fellow, Observer Research Foundation; Vikram Sood, Vice President, Center for International Relations, Observer Research Foundation; Derek Scissors, Senior Research Fellow for Economics, Asian Studies Center, The Heritage Foundation; Lisa Curtis, Senior Research Fellow on South Asia, Asian Studies Center, The Heritage Foundation; Sunjoy Joshi, Director, Observer Research Foundation; James Jay Carafano, Ph.D., E.W. Richardson Fellow and Vice President, Foreign and Defense Policy Studies, The Heritage Foundation.

CHINA’S DEVELOPMENT FINANCE TO AFRICA: A MEDIA-BASED APPROACH TO DATA COLLECTION. 4/29, 4:00-5:30pm. Sponsor: Center for Global Development (CGD). Speakrs: Andreas Fuchs, Post-doctoral Fellow, Princeton University; Brad Parks, Executive Director, AidData; Vijaya Ramachandran, Senior Fellow, CGD; Yan Wang, Former Senior Economist, World Bank, Member, ECD-DAC China Study Group; Lawrence MacDonald, Vice President, Communications and Policy Outreach, CGD.

ABENOMICS AND THE FUTURE OF U.S.-JAPAN RELATIONS: JAPAN’S GROWTH STRATEGY AND ITS IMPACT ON THE U.S. ECONOMY. 4/29, 5:00-6:00pm. Sponsor: US-Japan Research Institute. Speaker: The Honorable Yasutoshi Nishimura, Senior Vice Minister of Cabinet Office. 

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Finally the Washington Post Speaks Out

Prime Minister Abe
Reflecting the increasing dismay and exasperation of the Obama Administration with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, the Editorial Board of the Washington Post on Saturday, April 26th hectored Abe about his retrogressive views of the Pacific War, Imperial Japan, and patriotism. 

Most important, this editorial signals a significant public shift of governmental attitudes toward Japan. American officials are now willing to  point out Japan's historical revisionism as destabilizing to the region and insulting to Americans and Chinese alike. Expect more messages this coming Golden Week to Japan that these values and behaviors are unacceptable for an American ally. For example, appointments and pubic meetings with Japanese Cabinet members will be downgraded or canceled.

Confucius' lesson of the day: Men of totally different principles can never act together.

Shinzo Abe’s inability to face history
By Editorial Board, Published: April 26, 2013

FROM THE MOMENT last fall when Shinzo Abe reclaimed the office of Japanese prime minister that he had bungled away five years earlier, one question has stood out: Would he restrain his nationalist impulses — and especially his historical revisionism — to make progress for Japan?

Until this week, the answer to that question was looking positive. Mr. Abe has taken brave steps toward reforming Japan’s moribund economy. He defied powerful interest groups within his party, such as rice farmers, to join free-trade talks with the United States and other Pacific nations that have the potential to spur growth in Japan. He spoke in measured terms of his justifiable desire to increase defense spending.

This week he seemed willing to put all the progress at risk. Asked in parliament whether he would reconsider an official apology that Japan issued in 1995 for its colonization of Korea in the past century, Mr. Abe replied: “The definition of what constitutes aggression has yet to be established in academia or in the international community. Things that happened between nations will look differently depending on which side you view them from.”

Officials in South Korea and China responded with fury, and understandably so. Yes, history is always being reinterpreted. But there are such things as facts. Japan occupied Korea. It occupied Manchuria and then the rest of China. It invaded Malaya. It committed aggression. Why, decades after Germany solidified its place in Europe by facing history honestly, are facts so difficult for some in Japan to acknowledge?

We understand that South Korea and, to an even greater extent, China at times stoke anti-Japan sentiment for domestic political purposes. China distorts its own history and, unlike Japan, in many cases does not allow conflicting interpretations to be debated or studied. But none of that excuses the kind of self-destructive revisionism into which Mr. Abe lapsed this week.

An inability to face history will prejudice the more reasonable goals to which South Korea and China also object. Mr. Abe has valid reasons, given the defense spending and assertive behavior of China and North Korea, to favor modernization of Japan’s defense forces. He has good reason to question whether Japan’s “self-defense” constitution, imposed by U.S. occupiers after World War II, allows the nation to come to the aid of its allies in sufficient strength. But his ability to promote reform at home, where many voters remain skeptical, and to reassure suspicious neighbors plummets when he appears to entertain nostalgia for prewar empire.

Prime Minister of Japan's Schedule March 11-22

March 11, 2013 (Mon)


08:03 Office
08:05 Mr. Katou, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary
08:53 Parliament
09:00 Lower House Budget Committee

12:07 Office
12:09 Foreign Minister Kishida; and Administrative Vice Foreign Minister Kawai
01:04 Mr. Ginanjar, Indonesian Presidential Committee member
01:17 Mr. Hisashi Yamaura and mr. Hiroyuki Shigematsu, New and Old Board of Audit Chair; Issue an appointment letter to Mr. Yamaura; Mr Sugita, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary, attends
01:30 Mr. Ooishi, Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs and Communications
02:15 National Theater, Hayato-chou; The Ceremony to Commemorate the Second Anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake
03:42 Office
04:10 Mr. Katou and Mr. Sekou, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretaries
04:30 Press Conference by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to Commemorate the Second Anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake; Reconstruction Minister Nemoto accompany
04:59 Parliament
05:01 LDP Executives Meeting
05:26 Mr. Ishiba, LDP Secretary General; Mr. Hosoda, Deputy; and Mr. Kawamura, Election Affairs Chair
05:43 Office
06:19 The Prime Minister Receives a Courtesy Call from Winners of the High School Speech Contest on the Northern Territories; Okinawa and Northern Territory Minister Yamamoto attends
06:46 Mr. Shoutarou Yauchi, Cabinet Office Councilor
07:03 Residence; Dinner with Professor Motoshige Itou of Tokyo University Graduate School and other members of Economic and Financial Policy Council; Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga and Economic Revitalization Minister Amari attend
08:59 Home in Tomigaya

March 12, 2013 (Tue)


07:13 Office
07:15 Mr. Katou, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary
08:10 Mr. Katou leaves
08:18 Parliament
08:21 Ministerial meeting
09:00 Lower House Budget Committee
11:56 Office
11:58 Mr. Isozaki, Special Advisor For PM

12:52 Parliament
12:59 Lower House Budget Committee
04:51 Mr. Kanazawa, Administrative Vice Defense Minister
04:59 Mr. Yonemura, Cabinet Crisis Management Director
05:09 Mr. Yonemura leaves
05:10 Mr. Nishi, MoD Defense Policy Bureau Director General; and Mr. Kinomura, Mr. Kinomura, Director of Defense Intelligence Headquarters
05:32 Mr. Kitamura, Mr. Nishi, and Mr. Kinomura leaves
05:44 Mr. Kurt Campbell, former Assistant Secretary of State; and Mr. Yoichi Funabashi, Chair of Japan Reconstruction Initiative
06:10 Mr. Mogi Tomozaburou, President Emeritus of Kikoman and Chair of Japan Germany Forum; Mr. Kinouchi, Parliamentary Secretary of Foreign Affairs
06:26 Courtesy Call from the Participants of the Japan-ASEAN Vice-Ministerial Level Meeting on Defense
06:46 Mr. Matsumoto, Administrative Vice Minister of Cabinet Office
07:13 Dinner with the first term LDP members at Chinese Restaurant Akasaka Shisen Hanten; Mr. Ishiba, and Mr. Kimura, Special Adviser for PM
08:45 Home in Tomigaya

March 13, 2013 (Wed)


07:55 Office
07:59 Mr. Katou, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary
08:53 Parliament
08:59 Lower House Budget Committee

12:03 Office
12:53 Parliament
01:00 Lower House Budget Committee
05:01 Office
05:10 Issue an appointment letter for Mr. Yasunori Yoshimura, Professor of Keio University to be Cabinet Office Councilor
05:23 The Ministerial Meeting on Strategy relating Infrastructure Export and Economic Cooperation
05:29 Goh Chok Tong, Singaporean Senior Minister Emeritus; and Singaporean Ambassador for Japan CHIN Siat Yoon
05:44 All leave
06:33 Advisory Council on the Establishment of a National Security Council
07:20 Dinner with press people at Arc Hills Club in Akasaka
09:25 Home in Tomigaya

March 14, 2013 (Thu)


08:32 Office
08:42 Mr. Furuya, Minister in charge of Nation's Infrastructure Resilience
09:09 Mr. Kitamura, Director, Cabinet Intelligence
09:37 Mr. Nemoto, Minister of Reconstruction
09:56 Report from the Ruling Parties' Project Team on Ensuring the Safety of Japanese Nationals Abroad
10:35 Foreign Minister Kishida; and Administrative Vice Foreign Minister Kawai
11:06 Mr. Amari, Minister of Economic Revitalization
11:25 President Akio Toyota of Toyota Motors

12:01 Mr. Toyota leaves
12:57 Parliament
01:02 Lower House Plenary Session
03:01 Leave the session in the middle
03:04 Office
03:35 Deputy Foreign Minister Saiki
03:45 Mr. Sugiyama, MoFA Asia Oceania Affairs Bureau Director General, joins
04:19 Mr. Sugiyama leaves
04:22 Mr. Saiki leaves
04:23 Mr. Furuya, Minister in charge of the Abduction Issue and Minister of State for Disaster Management
04:54 Mr. Ishihara, Minister of Environment
05:11 Defense Minister Onodera; MoD Administrative Vice Minister Kanazawa; and Mr. Iwasaki, JSDF Joint Staff Head
05:45 All leave
06:20 Japan-Sri Lanka Summit Meeting, Signing Ceremony for the Joint Statement and Joint Press Conference
07:19 Dinner hosted by Mr. and Mrs. Abe
08:31 See of Sri Lankan President
08:46 Liberal Democratic Party's Request on TPP
09:33 Home in Tomigaya

March 15, 2013 (Fri)


07:53 Parliament
07:59 Global Warming Prevention Headquarters
08:14 Ministerial meeting
08:32 Ministerial Council on Monthly Economic Report and Other Relative Issues
09:04 Mr. Ishiba, LDP Secretary General; Ms. Noda, LDP General Affairs Chief; Ms. Takaichi, LDP Policy Research Council Chief; Mr. Seishirou Etou, LDP Foreign Policy and Economic Partnership Managing Director; Mr. Kimiya Nishikawa, LDP TPP Affairs Committee Chair
09:20 Mr. Etou and Mr. Nishikawa leaves
09:27 Meeting ends
09:31 Office
10:38 The Prime Minister Receives a Courtesy Call from the Japanese American Leadership Delegation
11:34 Mr. Ishiba, LDP Secretary General
11:46 Meeting with Mr. Yamaguchi, President of New Komei Party; Mr. Ishiba and Mr. Inouye, Komei’s Secretary General, attend

12:11 Lunch with President Yamaguchi of New Komei Party; Mr. Ishiba and Mr. Inouye
01:10 Lunch ends
01:12 Ms. Noda and Ms. Takaichi
01:54 Mr. Kanazawa, Administrative Vice Defense Minister
02:32 Mr. Kanazawa leaves
03:23 Mr. Sugita, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary; and Mr. Inouye, Cabinet Office Policy Planning Director General
03:41 Both leave
05:16 Economic Revitalization Headquarters
06:00 Press Conference
06:33 Industrial Competitiveness Council
07:10 Dinner with Hisashi Hie, President of Fuji TV at French Restaurant Crescent
08:50 NHK
09:00 Appear on news program
09:52 Home in Tomigaya

March 16, 2013 (Sat)


Home in Tomigaya

03:04 LDP Headquarters
03:10 Issue Endorsement Letters to Upper House Election candidates
03:44 LDP youth and women national assembly
04:14 LDP national secretary generals assembly
04:38 Haircut at Hair Guest in Shibuya
06:38 Office

March 17, 2013 (Sun)


09:13 Office
09:19 Leave the office on a GSDF helicopter
09:37 National Defense University, Yokosuka
09:44 Defense Minister Onodera and Mr. Yoshinari Kokubu, Chancellor of the university
10:06 Gave a keynote speech for commencement

12:34 Leave the university on MSDF helicopter
12:49 Arrive at the office
01:07 Grand Prince Hotel Shin Takanawa
01:30 LDP International Politics・Diplomacy Contest award ceremony; LDP Vice President Koumura; and Mr. Sihiba attend
01:37 “LDP President Abe・Secretary General Ishiba Character Contest” award ceremony
01:47 Photo taking with LDP long-service employee
02:04 LDP National Conference
04:00 Conference ends
04:12 LDP reception
04:54 Leave the reception
05:30 Home in Tomigaya

March 18, 2013 (Mon)


07:47 Office
07:48 Mr. Katou, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary
07:56 Parliament
07:59 Lower House Budget Committee

12:04 Office
12:55 Parliament
12:59 Lower House Budget Committee
05:03 LDP Executives meeting
05:32 Office
05:42 Mr. Suga, Mr. Katou, Mr. Sekou, and Mr. Sugita, Chief and Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretaries
06:06 Courtesy Call from Director of the League of Residents of Chishima and Habomai Islands
06:18 Mr. Ryotaro Sugi, an Ambassador of Japan・ASEAN
06:30 Administrative Vice Foreign Minister Kawai; and Deputy Foreign Minister Saiki
06:56 Tokyo Economic Forum hosted by LDP Tokyo Office at Tokyo Prince Hotel; Dinner with LDP Vice President Koumura, General Affairs Director Ms. Noda, Policy Research Commission Chair Takaichi, and Parliamentary Affairs Director Kamoshita.
09:10 Home in Tomigaya

March 19, 2013 (Tue)


07:52 Office
08:02 Ministerial meeting
08:21 Okinawa Policy Council
08:56 Mr. Yohei Sasakawa, Japanese Government Representative for Myanmar reconciliation
09:17 Mr. Sasakawa leaves
10:57 Mr. Kousuke Hori, Lower House Constitution Deliberation Committee Chair
11:41 Mr. Toshiharu Furukawa, LDP Upper House member
11:59 Mr. Furukawa leaves

01:10 Mr. Suga, Mr. Katou, Mr. Sekou, and Mr. Sugita, Chief and Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary
01:45 All leave
03:00 Administrative Vice Foreign Minister Kawai
03:23 Mr. Amari, Minister in charge of Total Reform of Social Security and Tax
04:01 Administrative Vice Foreign Minister Kawai; and Deputy Foreign Minister Saiki
04:53 Foreign Minister Kishida and Mr. Makoto Itou, the 5thInternational Conference on African Development Ambassador
05:13 Video recording for Africa Development Conference
05:18 Recording ends
06:15 Mr. Kitamura, Director, Cabinet Intelligence; and Mr. Shimohira, Cabinet Satellite Intelligence Center Director
06:25 Mr. Shimohira leaves
06:35 Mr. Kitamura leaves
08:31 The Healthy Society Award Presentation Ceremony
08:58 Home in Tomigaya

March 20, 2013 (Wed)


09:36 Imperial Palace; Spring Ritual Ceremony
11:07 Home in Tomigaya

03:38 Grand Hyatt Tokyo; Exercise in Nagomi Spa and Fitness
6:30 Stake House Oak Door; dinner with friends from his study abroad
08:46 Home

March 21, 2013 (Thu)


09:39 Office
09:56 Receives a Request from the National Governor's Association
10:29 Courtesy Call from Professor Joseph Eugene Stiglitz of Columbia University; Mr. Kouichi Hamada, Cabinet Office Councilor, attends
10:56 Issue appointment letters to Mr. Haruhiko Kuroda, Mr. Kikuo Iwata, and Hiroshi Nakaso, Governor and Vice Governor of the Bank of Japan
11:31 Mr. Sugita, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary

03:08 Mr. Masaaki Shirakawa, Mr. Hirohide Yamaguchi, and Mr. Kiyohiko Nishimura, Former Governor and Vice Governor of the Bank of Japan
03:32 Mr. Nemoto, Minister of Reconstruction
03:53 Dr. Arthit Ourairat, President of Rangsit University, Thailand; Mr. Toshiaki Endo, Lower House member also attends
04:18 President Takehiko Kiyotake of Sankei Shimbun
05:17 Meeting with His Royal Highness Prince Salman Bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Crown Prince of the Kingdom of Bahrain
06:48 Meeting with Toshiaki Endo, Mr. Kimura, Special Advisor to PM, and Defense Minister Onodera, at Japanese Izakaya Restaurant Nihon Kai Shouya in Akasaka; Mr. Furuya, Minister for Abduction Issue was also in the restaurant.
08:24 Meeting with Dr. Joseph Stiglitz at Roppongi Hills Club
09:45 Home in Tomigaya

March 22, 2013 (Fri)


07:30 Office
07:31 Mr. Katou, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary
08:03 Parliament
08:07 Ministerial meeting
08:25 Meeting amongst Main Ministers on the TPP
09:01 Meeting of the House of Representatives Committee on Financial Affairs
11:38 Office
11:40 Mr. Suga, Chief Cabinet Secretary
11:42 Former Prime Minister Mori

12:54 Parliament
01:02 Lower House Plenary Session
03:42 Office
03:55 Mr. Ikeda, Nuclear Regulatory Agency Director
04:07 Mr. Suga
04:18 Courtesy Call from Harvard Kennedy School Graduate Students
04:37 Education Rebuilding Implementation Council
05:10 Mr. Kitamura, Director, Cabinet Intelligence
05:31 Administrative Vice Foreign Minister Kawai
06:13 Japan-Papua New Guinea Summit Meeting and Signing Ceremony
06:43 Signing Ceremony
06:55 Press interview
07:02 Hotel Okura, Toranomon, Tokyo; Attend the gathering of Fuji TV “Prime News”
07:18 Residence; Dinner with Mr. Hiroshi Hayakawa, President of TV Asahi; and Mr. Toori Mishiro, President of Gentosha Publishing company
09:11 Home in Tomigaya
09:39 Finance Minister Aso
11:19 Mr. Aso leaves

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Japan's TPP decision

Not everyone is happy
On Saturday, April 20th, the 11 Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) countries -- which include Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, United States, and Vietnam -- approved Japan to join the TPP negotiations upon completion of current members’ respective domestic processes.

On Wednesday, April 24th, during the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan's annual Washington visit, the USTR announced that the Obama Administration has notified Congress of its intent to include Japan in the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade talks. This notification triggers a 90-day consultation period with Congress and the public on U.S. negotiating objectives with respect to Japan.

Here is an April 8, 2013, Congressional Research Service report on  Japan's Possible Entry Into the Trans-Pacific Partnership and Its Implications.

APP Senior Fellow William L. Brooks wrote the following analysis for APP's April 22nd Asia Policy Calendar, which is sent weekly to its members.

Abe’s Risky Decision on TPP to Pay Off?

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s go-for-broke decision to have Japan join the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations, despite strong opposition in his own Liberal Democratic Party, seems to be paying off. Japan will now join full-fledged talks most likely in July. The hope is of being able to influence rule-setting to Japan’s advantage by the time that negotiations among the 12 member nations wind up late this year.

The support rate for the Abe cabinet in the polls continues to rise, with the Nikkei’s April survey giving it a heady 76%, a seven point jump from March. Kyodo’s poll gave the Abe cabinet a 71.1% approval rating. On TPP, a solid 62.1% of the public approve Japan’s participation in the Kyodo poll. Nikkei’s survey found 47% in favor of joining TPP, with only 30% opposed.

After deciding to join the TPP, Prime Minister Abe set up under his lead a TPP headquarters of 100 senior officials with relevant expertise. They are to prepare the government’s strategy and specific positions when Japan formally joins TPP rule-setting negotiations in July, as well as build domestic support for the effort. Though the public remains unsure as to whether TPP will really create new wealth in the Japanese economy, it is willing to go along with Abe’s bold decision on TPP because of strong expectations that Abenomics to end the long economic slump.

Experts seem to support such optimism. A steady stream of pro-TPP books and magazine articles has hit the market in recent months. Such opinion agrees that although some parts of the agricultural sector may suffer under TPP – requiring government countermeasures and reforms to be introduced quickly – other parts may grow, countering a long-term trend of decline. Moreover, the manufacturing and services sectors are likely to reap the bulk of the benefits, adding jobs and growth to the economy.

With Japan now welcomed by the U.S. and all 11 TPP participants, the debate in Japan has turned to what impact a TPP agreement might have on the economy at the macro and micro levels and what to do about it. In a Nikkei interview on April 12, Itochu Corporation Chairman Eizo Kobayashi championed TPP by stressing that joining it will not only make Japanese exports more competitive in member-nation markets, it will also usher in a wave of direct investments in the Japanese market. He pointed out that the share of the labor force engaged in manufacturing had dropped over the years from a peak of 25% to 16%. If foreign investment significantly increased in Japan’s domestic production base, it would boost domestic and external demand for the products and lead to much-needed job creation and a recovery of the labor force.

Even popular magazines, like the weekly Shukan Shincho, are starting to come around to the logic that the massive free-trade agreement that is TPP will produce benefits to Japan’s national interests that far outweigh the negative side. Even the now highly-protected rice market, the popular weekly argues, will survive liberalization. The premium grade strains such as koshihikari will be able to hold their own domestically. The best Japonica rice grown in the U.S. and now selling for about $20 or more for five kilograms is about the same as the retail price of premium grades in Japan. Adding shipping and distribution costs, U.S. premium rice will be an expensive commodity in Japan. Lesser U.S. grades, again adding shipping and distribution costs, will likely sell for about the same price as comparable strains in Japan. Lesser grades of domestic rice admittedly will not be able to compete with cheap imports, particularly from China or Southeast Asia. But users of such rice, such as the family restaurants and beef-bowl franchises, are already importing a significant amount.

In the U.S., at present, only approximately 300,000 tons of Japonica rice are produced and consumed almost all domestically, the Shincho report continues. Even if all of that was exported to Japan, it would only amount to 3-4% of the annual 8 million tons of domestic rice sold in Japan. Moreover, Japanese consumers are remarkably fussy about the rice they serve at the dinner table, preferring short-grain “sticky rice” instead of medium to long-grained strains, which are produced cheaply and abundantly around the world. Short-grained rice remains in short supply. The magazine concludes that there is no immediate threat to the market for high-quality domestic rice in Japan.

On the other hand, Japanese vegetable and fruit growers, who receive neither government subsidies nor protection, see TPP as an ideal means for exporting high-quality fresh products to the world, according to a Nikkei report on March 31. Thus, the image of all Japanese farmers as being weak and uncompetitive has been exacerbated by the anti-TPP forces. Agricultural reforms aiming at modernizing the farm sector can help it survive the challenges of liberalization that will soon come. Of course, some products, such as sugar, may be wiped out once the 328% tariff on imported sugar is removed. This is a politically sensitive issue since most of the sugar cane grown in Japan is the sole cash crop of small islands near Okinawa. A government rescue package for those inhabitants seems likely.

There is a tendency to see TPP negotiations as focused mainly on trade in goods, but trade in services is also a key component. In 2010, for example, international transactions in financial and other services reached approximately 20% of global trade. Japan is no exception to that trend, so joining TPP will allow it to join another bandwagon for the country’s economic future, the liberalization of services markets among TPP members.

April 22, 2013

Times echoes American frustration with Japan

Masakaki Offering
The New York Times
April 23, 2013

Japan’s Unnecessary Nationalism

Since taking over as Japan’s prime minister in December, Shinzo Abe and his conservative Liberal Democratic Party have been juggling a packed agenda of complicated issues, including reviving the country’s economy, coping with the aftermath of the 2011 earthquake and tsunami and managing prickly relations with neighbors like North Korea. Stirring up extraneous controversy is counterproductive, but that’s exactly what he and his nationalist allies in Parliament have done.

On Tuesday, a group of 168 mostly low-ranking conservative lawmakers visited the Yasukuni Shrine in central Tokyo, which honors Japan’s war dead, including several who were executed as war criminals after World War II. It was the largest mass visit by Parliament in recent memory. The Japanese news media said that Mr. Abe didn’t visit the shrine, instead sending a ritual offering, but his deputy prime minister and two other ministers made a pilgrimage there over the weekend. He has a record of defending Japan’s conduct during World War II.

Mr. Abe and his allies know well what a deeply sensitive issue this is for China and South Korea, which suffered under Japan’s 20th-century empire-building and militarism, and the reaction was predictable. On Monday, South Korea canceled a visit to Japan by its foreign minister and China publicly chastised Japan. On Tuesday, tensions were further fueled when Chinese and Japanese boats converged on disputed islands in the East China Sea.

Japan and China both need to work on a peaceful solution to their territorial issues. But it seems especially foolhardy for Japan to inflame hostilities with China and South Korea when all countries need to be working cooperatively to resolve the problems with North Korea and its nuclear program.

Instead of exacerbating historical wounds, Mr. Abe should focus on writing Japan’s future, with an emphasis on improving its long-stagnant economy and enhancing its role as a leading democracy in Asia and beyond.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Monday in Washington

ARAB REVOLUTIONS AND THE IMF: SUPPORTING DEMOCRATIZATION OR BUSINESS AS USUAL? 4/22, 9:00-10:30am. Sponsor: New America Foundation (NAF). Speakers: Mahinour El-Badrawi; Senior Researcher, Egyptian Center for Economic and Social Rights; Faysal Itani; Visiting Fellow, Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East, Atlantic Council; Kinda Mohamadieh, Senior Policy Advisor, Arab NGO Network for Development; Leila Hilal, Director, Middle East Task Force, New America Foundation.

2013 ENVIRONMENT AND SECURITY DISCUSSION SERIES. 4/22, 9:30-11:30am. Sponsor: Stimson Center. Speakers: Sherri Goodman, Senior Vice President, CNA; former Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Environmental Security (1993-2001); Richard Cronin, Director, Southeast Asia Program, Stimson; Ellen Laipson, President and CEO, Stimson.

ORGANIZING AND MANAGING INTELLIGENCE ANALYSIS TO FIGHT TERRORISM. 4/22, 10:00-11:30am. Sponsor: Brookings Institution. Speaker: Philip Mudd, President of Mudd Management.

US-RUSSIA RELATIONS: THE FUTURE OF THE RESET. 4/22, 11:00-1:00pm. Sponsor: Hudson Institute. Speakers: Andrei Piontkovsky, Executive Director of the Strategic Studies Center; David Satter, a former Moscow correspondent; Andrei Illarionov, a senior fellow at the Cato Institute's Center for Global Liberty and Prosperity.

 INVISIBLE ARMIES. 4/22, Noon-1:30pm. Sponsor: Elliott School, George Washington University. Speakers: Max Boot, Author; Jeane J. Kirkpatrick, Senior Fellow for National Security Studies at Council on Foreign Relations.

THE BATTLE OF BRETTON WOODS: JOHN MAYNARD KEYNES, HARRY DEXTER WHITE, AND THE MAKING OF A NEW WORLD ORDER. 4/22, Noon-1:30pm. Sponsor: World Bank. Speaker: Benn Steil, author, Senior Fellow and Director of International Economics, Council on Foreign Relations.

IRAN SANCTIONS: RESTRICTIONS, LICENSING, DISCLOSURE REQUIREMENTS. 4/22, 12:30-2:00pm. Sponsor: Women in International Trade (WIIT). Speakers: Aydin Akgun, Licensing, Office of Foreign Assets Control; Lisa Palluconi, Chief Counsel's Office, Office of Foreign Assets Control; Heather Maples, Securities and Exchange Commission.

DRONES AND THE NEW WAY OF WAR. 4/22, 1:00-2:30pm. Sponsor: Cato. Speakers: Steve Vladeck, professor of law and the associate dean for scholarship at American University Washington College of Law; Benjamin Wittes, senior fellow and research director in public law at the Brookings Institution; Rosa Brooks, professor of law at Georgetown University Law Center; Benjamin Friedman, research fellow at the Cato Institute's Defense and Homeland Security Studies; Malou Innocent, foreign policy analyst at the Cato Institute.

TRENDS IN NATURAL DISASTER RESPONSE AND THE ROLE OF REGIONAL ORGANIZATIONS. 4/22, 2:00-3:30pm. Sponsor: Brookings Institution. Speaker: Rosa Malango, Chief Of External Relations And Partnership, Office For The Coordination Of Humanitarian Affairs In United Nations; Cletus Springer, Head Of Department Of Sustainable Development In Organization Of American States; Ian O'Donnell, Senior Information Architect In American Red Cross.

CYBERSPACE IN INDIA: GROWING AND MATURING. 4/22, 2:30-4:00pm. Sponsor: Carnegie. Speakers: Subimal Bhattacherjee, country head of General Dynamics Corporation India Private Limited; Ashley Tellis, senior associate of the South Asia Program at CEIP.

WHAT IS AT STAKE IN THE US-ROK 123 AGREEMENT? 4/22, 3:00-4:00pm. Sponsor: CSIS, Korea Chair. Speakers: Ambassador Christopher Hill, Dean, The Josef Korbel School of International Studies,University of Denver; Dr. Gary Samore, Executive Director, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard University; Ms. Sharon Squassoni. Director and Senior Fellow, Proliferation Prevention Program, CSIS; Dr. Victor Cha, Senior Advisor and Korea Chair, CSIS.

CONSERVATION ON THIN ICE: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE CHANGING ARCTIC ENVIRONMENT. 4/22, 3:00-4:30pm. Sponsor: CSIS, Europe Program. Speakers: Mr. William M. Eichbaum, vice president of Marine and Arctic Policy of the World Wildlife Fund; Mr. R. Andreas Kraemer, director of the Ecologic Institute; Dr. Kelly K. Falkner, director of Polar Programs of the National Science Foundation.

CHINA'S BOOM -- WHY NOT EARLIER? WHY SO LONG? CAN IT LAST? 4/22, 5:00-6:30pm. Sponsor: Sigur Center for Asian Studies, Elliot School, George Washington University. Speaker: Thomas G. Rawski, Professor of Economics and History at the University of Pittsburgh.

AMERICA'S FOREIGN POLICY TOOLKIT: KEY INSTITUTIONS AND PROCESSES. 4/22, 5:30-7:00pm. Sponsor: SAIS, Johns Hopkins. Speakers: Author Charles Stevenson, professorial lecturer in the SAIS American Foreign Policy Program; Michael Mandelbaum, director of the SAIS American Foreign Policy Program; Nancy Bearg, former assistant to the vice president for national security affairs and former National Security Council staff; Eric Edelman, Roger Hertog distinguished practitioner-in-residence at the SAIS Philip Merrill Center for Strategic Studies; R. Russell Rumbaugh, director of the Budgeting for Foreign Affairs and Defense program at the Stimson Center.

WHAT LIES AHEAD: RUSSIA'S POLITICAL AND ENERGY OUTLOOKS FOR THE NEXT TEN YEARS. 4/22, 6:00-7:15Ppm. Sponsor: Elliott School, George Washington University. Speakers: Robert W. Orttung, Associate Research Professor of International Affairs at GWU; Oleg Kozlovsky, Fulbright Visiting Researcher at GWU.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Japan's Finance Minister in Washington

 CSIS Statesmen's Forum

His Excellency Taro Aso
Deputy Prime Minister of Japan 
Minister of Finance, and Minister of State for Financial Services

Welcoming Remarks and Introduction by 

Dr. John Hamre
President and CEO and The Pritzker Chair, CSIS 

Moderated by 

Dr. Michael J. Green
Senior Vice President for Asia and Japan Chair, CSIS
Associate Professor, Georgetown University 

Friday, April 19, 2013
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm EDT
B1 Conference Center
CSIS 1800 K Street, NW, Washington, DC 20006 

Mr. Aso was Japan's Prime Minister from September 2008 to September 2009.
He is best known for having to retract in the Diet his denial that his family business, Aso Mining, used Korean and Allied POW slave labor to maintain war production.  (Aso and Agriculture Minister Hayashi both come from family businesses that profited from the use of POW labor during the war.) The Aso family is Roman Catholic.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Monday in Washington

POWDER KEG IN PYONGYANG: HOW SERIOUS IS THE KOREAN CRISIS? 4/15, 9:30-11:00am, Washington, DC. Sponsor: AEI. Speakers: Dan Blumenthal, AEI; Abraham M. Denmark, National Bureau of Asian Research; Thomas Donnelly, AEI; Nicholas Eberstadt, AEI; Bruce Klingner, Heritage Foundation; Michael Mazza, AEI.

NORTH KOREA AND POLICY PRIORITIES FOR THE UNITED STATES. 4/15, 10:00-11:30am. Sponsor: CNAPS Brookings. Speakers: Michael O’Hanlon, Senior Fellow and Director of Research, Foreign Policy, The Brookings Institution; Steven Pifer, Senior Fellow and Director, Arms Control Initiative, The Brookings Institution; Jonathan Pollack, Senior Fellow and Director, John L. Thornton China Center, The Brookings Institution; Evans J.R. Revere, Nonresident Senior Fellow, The Brookings Institution.

THE CURRENT STATE OF THE GLOBAL ECONOMY AND FUTURE DRIVERS OF JOB CREATION AND GROWTH. 4/15, 11:15am-1:30pm. Sponsor: Economic Club of Washington. Speaker: Kenneth I. Chenault, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, The American Express Company.

A CONVERSATION WITH LINTON BROOKS: THE FUTURE OF THE U.S. NUCLEAR DETERRENT. 4/15, 12:30-1:30pm. Sponsor: American Security Project (ASP). Speaker: Ambassador Linton Brooks, Former Administrator for the National Nuclear Security Administration.

THE GLOBAL RACE FOR RESOURCES IN THE ARCTIC. 4/15, 12:30-2:00pm. Sponsor: The National Press Club. Speaker: Ólafur Grímsson, President of Iceland.

CAPITOL HILL FORUM ON ASEAN: THE US REBALANCE, ASEAN CENTRALITY AND THE SOUTH CHINA SEA. 4/15, 1:30-3:00pm. Sponsor: US-Asia Institute. Speakers: His Excellency Nguyen Quoc Cuong, Ambassador of Vietnam to the United States of America; Mr. Ernest Z. Bower, Senior Advisor and Sumitro Chair for Southeast Asia Studies, CSIS; Mr. Ben Dolven, Specialist in Asian Affairs, Congressional Research Service.

SEIZING EDUCATION OPPORTUNITIES WITH INDONESIA. 4/15, 2:00-3:00pm. Sponsor: CSIS, Southeast Asia Studies. Speakers: Putera Sampoerna , Chairman, Putera Sampoerna Foundation; Ted Osius, Senior State Department Visiting Fellow, Center for Strategic and International Studies.

THE EMERGING INDIAN ECONOMY. 4/15, 2:00-3:30pm. Sponsor: CSIS. Speaker: Mr. B Muthuraman, Vice Chairman of Tata Steel and Chairman of Tata International.

AFGHANISTAN'S ECONOMIC TRANSITION: ISSUES AND PROSPECTS IN LIGHT OF THE WORLD BANK'S TRANSITION STUDY. 4/15, 2:00-3:30pm. Sponsor: United States Institute of Peace (USIP). Speakers: William Byrd, Senior Afghanistan Expert, U.S. Institute of Peace; Borany Penh, Senior Economic Advisor, U.S. Agency for International Development; Fatema Sumar, Senior Professional Staff Member, Senate Foreign Relations Committee; Robert Saum, Country Director for Afghanistan and Bhutan, World Bank.

ELECTIONS IN DE FACTO STATES: ABKHAZIA, NAGORNO-KARABAKH, AND TRANSNISTRIA. 4/15, 4:00-5:00pm. Sponsor: Elliot School, GW. Speaker: Donnacha Ó Beacháin, Dublin City University. Location: Elliot School, 1957 E Street, NW, Voesar Conference Room, Suite 412. Contact: 994-6240.

POPULATION DECLINE AND THE REMAKING OF GREAT POWER POLITICS. 4/15, 4:30-6:00pm. Sponsor: Institute of World Politics (IWP). Speaker: Author, Susan Yoshihara, Director, International Organizations Research Group, Senior Vice President for Research, Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute.

Saturday, April 13, 2013


Lt. Gen. Tachibani surrendering
Iwo Jima and Chichijima are islands on the edges of Japan. Barely 150 miles apart, both have unique histories. Neither was ever fully Japanese nor returned to Japan at the end of the Occupation. Both are remembered for their bloody legacies from the last months of the Pacific War.

Two best-selling books by James Bradley tell the wartime histories of these small islands, Flags of Our Fathers (2000) and Flyboys: A True Story of Courage (2003).

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe plans to visit both this Sunday, April 14th. It is a trip of reparation.

After declaring that April 28th is Sovereignty Restoration Day commemorating the end of the US Occupation of Japan in 1952, Abe Administration had to backtrack. Neither the Ryukyu (Iwo Jima) nor Ogasawara (Chichijima) island chains were returned at that time. Both used to host U.S. military facilities, the former had to wait until 1968 and the later until 1972.

Hoping to placate protesters, Abe plans to visit Iwo Jima (now called Iwoto) to honor the Japanese dead from one the bloodiest battles of WWII and then to fly to Chichijima, first settled by Westerners in the 1600s, to talk with its residents. On both islands he will be haunted by these islands' complicated war histories.

The Battle of Iwo Jima is well-known and memorialized. What happened on Chichijima is considered best forgotten. Although Chichijima was never invaded, it is the site of infamous war crimes for which four Japanese officers were hanged.

During the Battle of Iwo Jima, U.S. United States Navy pilots tried to bomb Chichijima's two strategic radio stations. Nine crewmen survived after being shot down in the raids. One, Lieutenant George H. W. Bush, was rescued by an American submarine. The others were captured by the Japanese and tortured. And as chronicled by Chester G. Hearn in Sorties into Hell: The Hidden War on Chichi Jima, these POWs were then executed and partially eaten by both Imperial Army and Navy officers. Their livers were fried for a dinner party.
Cannibalism toward POWs or even dead fellow soldiers was reportedly not unusual among Japanese troops. The trials and convictions of 30 Japanese soldiers and four officers on Guam, including the commanding General Joshio Taichibana for war crimes was unusual.

Aides to Abe said the visit to Chichijima was intended to show consideration for those areas that were not covered under the San Fransico Peace Treaty's restoration of sovereignty. There is indeed much to show consideration to.

Friday, April 12, 2013

U.S.-Japan Okinawa Agreement Not a Breakthrough

George Washington University Professor Mike Mochizuki, an APP Board Member, was interviewed on April 11th by Peter Ennis for Toyo Keizai On-Line and Dispatch Japan regarding the "new" agreement to set a timetable for the return of some property to Okinawa.

DISPATCH JAPAN: What is the significance of the recently-announced agreement between Washington and Tokyo concerning the return of some territory in Okinawa?

MOCHIZUKI: This is a last-ditch effort by the US and Japanese governments to alter base politics in Okinawa so that the Futenma Replacement Facility can be constructed at Henoko Bay.

DISPATCH JAPAN: Is this a genuine breakthrough on the issue?

MOCHIZUKI: If by “genuine breakthrough,” you mean that the agreement will succeed in fundamentally altering current political dynamics in Okinawa, I would say it is not a breakthrough. Moreover, the agreement does not entail a significant acceleration in the timetable for returning U.S. facilities south of Kadena Air Force Base, which has been sought by Okinawans.

DISPATCH JAPAN: It seems that Tokyo is trying to “buy off” Okinawa. Can that tactic work anymore?

MOCHIZUKI: Okinawa of course welcomes the financial aid from the central government in order to promote development. But this aid does not necessarily translate into local willingness to accept a new Marine Air Station within the prefecture.

DISPATCH JAPAN: So much of the new agreement depends on construction of replacement facilities, which has been one reason for the impasse of many years. So where is the “breakthrough?”

MOCHIZUKI: There is no substantive breakthrough. But I think that by recommitting themselves to the return of Futenma as well as the return of facilities south of Kadena, the U.S. and Japanese governments hope to turn around public opinion in Okinawa. After the resignation of Prime Minister Hatoyama, the political executives of every city, town, and village of Okinawa –whether conservative or progressive-- have declared their opposition to the Henoko FRF plan. So what the Abe government would like to do is at least win the support of conservatives in Okinawa for the current Futenma relocation plan. But when Okinawans read the fine print of the agreement and consider the conditions and the probable schedule for the return of U.S. military facilities, there is not much to cheer about.

DISPATCH JAPAN: Do you see any change in the attitude of Governor Nakaima? There are top-level MOD officials who believe that since the governor is an LDP member, he will eventually alter his opposition to the Henoko plan.

MOCHIZUKI: I think Governor Nakaima wants to maintain a good rapport with the Abe government, and he is wisely refraining from rejecting central government initiatives out of hand. But I don’t think this means that he is now prepared to accept the Henoko plan. He is being cautious, and he has stated that he needs to find out how local communities that will be affected by the latest agreement feel.

DISPATCH JAPAN: The MOD and the Kantei seem to think they can out-maneuver Mayor Inamine by somehow winning the support of a majority of assembly members. Do you see that as feasible?

MOCHIZUKI: Winning over the majority of the Nago City Assembly is an ambitious goal for the MOD and Kantei. But what is key is whether or not Mayor Inamine, who has vehemently opposed the Henoko plan, wins re-election in 2014.

DISPATCH JAPAN: Is there a different attitude toward the Henoko project between the local Henoko residents vs. the other sections of the prefecture? The OPG staff seems to think that the Henoko community favors the project, but all other sections of Okinawa remain opposed.

MOCHIZUKI: Because there has been so much money flowing into the communities closest to Henoko Bay, it is not surprising that these communities tend to favor the FRF project. But those sections of Nago City away from Henoko Bay tend to be opposed. And public opposition to the Henoko plan remains pretty robust in the rest of Okinawa Prefecture.

DISPATCH JAPAN: How would you characterize the Abe government’s approach toward Okinawa? Tokyo seems intent on using the period of review of the landfill application to win over a significant portion of Okinawa sentiment that, up to now, has been opposed.

MOCHIZUKI: Through both financial aid and the promise of future closures of U.S. military facilities in attractive areas for development, the Abe government hopes to win over the hearts and minds of conservative Okinawans who are pro-development and more supportive of the security alliance with the United States. Unfortunately, the latest agreement tends to take a piecemeal approach so the effect on these Okinawans is unlikely to be dramatic.

DISPATCH JAPAN: Has the tension with North Korea had any significant impact on how the long-standing stalemate for FRF? (Putting pressure on Okinawa to agree to Henoko…)

MOCHIZUKI: Tensions with North Korea as well as tensions with China over the Senkakus may have increased support for the US-Japan alliance among some Okinawans. But this does not necessarily mean that they will now embrace the Henoko plan. Rather many Okinawans are probably asking that if US military forces are so important for Japanese security, why don’t other prefectures offer to host those forces?

DISPATCH JAPAN: According to the new agreement, Futenma would remain open for at least another 9 years (2022). Is it wise to keep such a controversial facility open for such a long time?

MOCHIZUKI: The target date of 2022 is probably frustrating and depressing for Okinawans. Remember that under the original 1996 agreement, the goal was to have Futenma returned between 2001 and 2003. 2022 would be at least 19 years after the target date. That’s a whole generation. Moreover, the April 2013 agreement does not declare Futenma will be returned in 2022 at the latest. The document instead states “2022 or later.” So there is a strong possibility that the 2022 target year will not be met.

DISPATCH JAPAN: The plan to relocate a large number of US Marines to Guam seems to be in question, as construction of new facilities on Guam is caught up in cost-overruns, underestimation of costs, questions in Congress, and now the sequestration. How can the overall base realignment move forward if the US can’t deliver on the Guam side of the deal?

MOCHIZUKI: That’s a good question. Michael O’Hanlon of Brookings and I, however, have an answer to that. We propose relocating these Marines back to bases on the continental United States. If we pre-positioned equipment in Japan and elsewhere in the region, we can easily and rapidly fly Marines back into the region during a contingency. Moreover, Marines can maintain a regular regional presence through rotational deployments.

DISPATCH JAPAN: Is the US Marine presence on Okinawa really of strategic importance, or is the real motivation more mundane bureaucratic considerations?

MOCHIZUKI: If Okinawa were willing to host 20,000 Marines permanently, I would acknowledge that there may be strategic benefits of such a presence. But that is not the case. Therefore, we have to recognize the political strain that such a Marine presence poses on the alliance. Moreover, having Futenma Marine Air Station located in a crowded urban area increases the probability of a tragic accident.If such a tragedy were to occur, this would have a devastating effect on the alliance. It is strategically important to maintain support in Okinawa for hosting more vital facilities like Kadena Air Force base. I am not arguing that all the Marines should leave Okinawa. But I believe that we can dramatically reduce the Marine presence on Okinawa without undermining the US security role in the Asia-Pacific.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

No comfort for Minister Kishida

What must have been on Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida's mind as he stood behind actress Angelina Jolie at the ending press conference of G8 Foreign Ministers Summit in London? Ms. Jolie was commending The G8 for adopting a Declaration on Sexual Violence, a new initiative to end rape and sexual violence on children, women, and men as a weapon of war in conflicts around the globe.

As British Foreign Secretary William Hague observed, "This is one of the greatest and most persistent injustices in the world. It is also one of the most neglected." His words echoed those of U.S. President Barak Obama, who on August 11, 2012 had issued an Executive Order directing his Administration to design a multi-year strategy that will more effectively prevent and respond to gender-based violence globally. Obama said "gender-based violence undermines not only the safety, dignity, and human rights of the millions of individuals who experience it, but also the public health, economic stability, and security of nations."

For Minister Kisida, so much of what was said at this April 11th presser also applied to the arguments for Japan, a G8 country, to acknowledge and address the suffering of the Comfort Women (and men), sex slaves to Imperial Japan's Armed Forces and overseas public and private officials. By signing the Declaration, he had just committed Japan to equating the abuse of the Comfort Women as a breach of the Geneva Conventions and a crime against humanity. I am not sure if that had ever happened officially before and if not, this is then significant.

The British Foreign Secretary noted that implicit in the Declaration the G8 was:
that there should never be any amnesty for sexual violence in peace agreements, and committed ourselves to ensuring explicit recognition of the need for accountability for sexual violence in any peace agreements that G8 nations are involved in. We need such commitments to end the treatment of rape and sexual violence as a secondary issue, and to put women and women’s rights front and centre in conflict resolution.
Hague introduced Ms. Jolie [Full Transcript] by saying that the G8 has "the ability to show leadership on vast global issues of our time. One of those issues must be the horrific use of rape and sexual violence as a weapon of war in conflicts around the globe."

He pointed out the anonymity of wartime rape and its association with slavery:
the overwhelming majority of survivors never see any justice for what they have endured. And there has never been any concerted international effort, supported by leading nations of the world, to eradicate sexual violence in conflict in the first place. This has to change. To my mind, this cause is the slave trade of our generation.
He continued, echoing what so many have advocated for the Comfort Women:
I often hear the mistaken view that rape is something that simply happens in war, or even worse, a cultural phenomenon. And I know that to some people this seems like a faraway problem – even though rape camps were set up on European soil in our lifetimes, and even though we live with accounts of survivors and statistics about these crimes at our very fingertips. The moment has come to shatter the myths about sexual violence....Governments finally [need to] do more to confront this problem, not just the many brave groups and individuals working on the ground.
Ms. Jolie added:
There is no choice between peace and justice: peace requires justice. So I welcome the pledge by the G8 to regard rape and sexual violence in armed conflict as grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions [see Point #4]; and to give no amnesty to those who commit these crimes. And I fully support the work that will now begin on an International Protocol on the Investigation and Documentation of Sexual Violence in Conflict, and look forward to its adoption.
This is all a start, as Ms. Jolie points out. Funding for the "investigation" is needed and a binding protocol still is to be adopted. For now, Japan is not locked into anything other than a promise. It is not reported if Japan has contributed any funds to the initiative.