Liberal Democratic Party lawmaker Shigeru Ishiba poses in front of posters at his office in Tokyo on Monday. Photo: REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon
politics

Ishiba urges closer ties with Asian neighbors

48 Comments
By Tetsushi Kajimoto, Antoni Slodkowski and Yoshifumi Takemoto

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48 Comments
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Hmmm, if you look at Mr. Ishiba in the news image and compare it to the image on the poster on the wall, one might wonder, are these the same people? He's clearly not a believer in Oliver Cromwell's "Warts and all!" sentiments...

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Nippon Kaigi plus pro nukes, isn't he? On the other hand, he is better than some might be.

6 ( +13 / -7 )

Korean lessons for all Diet members to be made mandatory-radical steps!

-7 ( +9 / -16 )

Ishiba can be better choice but he must increase his speed while speaking otherwise listeners will go to sleep!!!

6 ( +11 / -5 )

Stronger ties with ASEAN is an excellent strategy for Japan.

25 ( +27 / -2 )

Ishiba seems to b Most popular candidate only in JT not with people of Japan or other news channel

7 ( +11 / -4 )

This is an election to choose a new prime minister from among LDP members. Opinions in the poll include people who support opposition parties.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Kono dropped out because Aso told him to, because Aso and Abe want Suga. With Suga NOTHING will change and Abe's "policies" will remain in place, as those two will be the "puppet masters" with Suga

Ishiba seems to b Most popular candidate only in JT not with people of Japan or other news channel

Ishiba is not popular with the elected Diet members of the LDP, but he is popular with the LDP membership in the prefectures.

Because of it, the LDP leadership decided that only the elected Diet members of the LDP and the LDP representatives in the prefectures will be able to vote in the presidential election. Cutting nearly 450 or so votes out of the potential total.

Ishiba actualy has Abe beaten in the first round of voting when Abe was make the leader of the LDP 8 years ago. He garnered 55% of the total vote, but lost to Abe in a landslide in the 2nd round because Ishiba does not have the backing of the elected Diet members.

He isnt popular because he often talks out against the party leadership!

17 ( +20 / -3 )

Who’s popular and leading the polls depends on the candidate the news source is backing. Suga the status quo is not going to get things done.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

I agree with the two posters above. This is a done deal, Suga will be the next PM. He is a safe toady that will keep up the terrible Abenomics style of government, which does nothing to help the people of Japan, but the politicians and a few large corporations all benefit from.

I hate this faction system Japan has, it really is medieval and should be done away with!

15 ( +17 / -2 )

Japan has to improve its relations with China, India, SK, Indonesia, Russia, Iran and Turkey. These are the key countries that will help boost the Japanese economy and world peace in the future. Perhaps it is time Japan apologised SK and China for what happened during WWII. There is grace in that. In terms of investments I don't see any better country than Indonesia and Turkey at the moment. And yes, ASEAN should grow stronger and unite countries across Asia. Otherwise we will be dependent on the US and EU. Japanese economy cannot survive another Trump. As it is the EU and US are far too difficult to sell anything due to their protective policies and God knows what these economies will do after the pandemic- surely they will further introduce measures that stimulate domestic production & consumption but restrict / minimise imports.

-7 ( +13 / -20 )

Japan needs a female leader, time for all these old guys to be gone.

1 ( +9 / -8 )

In Japan, human relations matter a lot. Ishiba is aloof and he was critical about Aso and Abe in the past. They do not think good about him. While Suga is low key and a good negotiator. He does not make enemies. He is a safe choice for many LDP members as a provisional leader until the official party election comes next year.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Former Defense Minister Shigeru Ishiba, a favorite in opinion polls to become the next prime minister, 

BS, Nippon Kaigi already chose him- probably before they allowed Abe to resign. That's why the process is so swift. Now its just a matter of putting his mug on every bit of news to get us used to the idea of a new dear leader. What a joke of a system

5 ( +11 / -6 )

JohnToday  07:45 am JST

Perhaps it is time Japan apologised SK and China for what happened during WWII.

Your arguments evaporate when you disregard reality. Both nations have received apologies and more. The 1965 Treaty between South Korea and Japan. And the 1972 Sino-Japanese Treaty of Friendship, which China reaffirmed in 1978.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_war_apology_statements_issued_by_Japan

Both nations have received apologies , but continue to use WWII history as a political tool. You don't see other nations that received apologies etc from Japan doing that.

0 ( +16 / -16 )

So, the ex-defense minister wants closer ties with neighboring countries? Let that sink in for a minute.

I don’t really care who will replace Abe. It’ll just be another LDP liar full of false promises and other bovine excrement.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Fuji tv is really pushing this guy. Must be bad news.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

One party rule is NEVER good for any society, it is time for Japan to give other parties an equal share in the leadership of the country.

It is time for Fresh New Ideas from Fresh New Minds.

12 ( +12 / -0 )

Forging closer ties with Korea and Communist China is pie in the sky stuff. Bad move by Ishiba if he wants to win this vote. Every time Japan has apologized, settled past issues in finality, offered an olive branch, Korea and China have continued their hatred of Japan.

Japan should continue the move further apart from Communist China, in terms of trade and diplomacy - not closer.

Im summary, Japan needs another strong PM like Abe who will stand up to Korean and Chinese bullying, not someone who will try and appease them. I don't think Ishiba is the right man.

11 ( +21 / -10 )

Ishiba can be better choice but he must increase his speed while speaking otherwise listeners will go to sleep!!!

Reminds me of Ben Carlson. However, Ishiba's voice is much creepier.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Suga, as the continuity candidate, looks set to grab this. Unfortunately.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

While Suga is low key and a good negotiator. 

Every time Abe lied or did corruption, Suga got his back. I wonder when Suga is dear leader who will do the same?

One party rule is NEVER good for any society,

Case by case. Singapore total success. HK sustainable existence. Japan steady decline.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

WhatsnextToday 08:32 am JST

Fuji tv is really pushing this guy. Must be bad news.

What? Ishiba's live on Asahi TV right now. Fuji-Sankei is right wing.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

It boggles my mind why he is popular, essentially he is the Male Koike backseat governing the national government criticizing when they make mistakes but don't really offer clear alternatives.

This Military hawk wants better ASEAN ties so it can be more belligerent to China, and they "We don't have to like them to work with them" attitude to SK isn't going to work. He wants a liaison office with Pyongyang so when it breaks down (as NK blackmail aid negotiations always do.) he can boost the militarism rearming he wants. He advocates Japan should have strike first capability. Ishiba isn't to be trusted as much as I loathe Abe this guy is the bull in the China shop awful version of him. Westerners always painted Abe as.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Ishiba has held popularity by playing a rebel drawing dissenting voices or criticism against the LDP mainstream leadership. He might continue to remain popular and comfortable, yet will hardly become the party president. Chances for premiership would be more likely if he is to form own party or defect to the opposition camp. He hasn't had such guts.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I like his mentality in building relationships with other nations.

Whether you like Korea or not, I believe it's important to forge ties. They are our neighbor, culturally similar, and an important market and economic zone for us.

I think China is too big of a market (and a bully) to disassociate from it, but it would be good to be on good terms with China whilst making transition to be less reliant on them.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

FFS no, not this guy! And not Suga either. Let the people choose the next PM. This old useless system needs to go!!!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

"For example, does Japan have a relationship of trust with Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam, the Philippines or Singapore?" asked Ishiba. "We must build political, cultural or security relationships of trust with Asia."

I agree with this, however, in the middle of a pandemic the LDP may choose to go with Suga for a year or so as he will clearly follow Abe-san's current policies.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Tokyo's ties with Seoul are strained by a dispute over compensation for Koreans forced to work in Japan's wartime factories and mines, as well as in Japanese military brothels.

"Dispute over compensation?"

What dispute.

It was the South Koreans that twice undermined Japan's offer of compensation and apologies to the former comfort women, including in 2015 which was supposed to have been the final say in the matter. The 2015 landmark comfort women agreement between South Korea and Japan was eventually tossed aside by the South Korean government, on a whim, for absolutely no good reason (and the funding that was supposed to go to the comfort women was never fully accounted for and in fact was used for personal reasons by some South Korean "activists").

What sane person would want to deal with such a government that preaches hatred of Japan from an early age, undermines and negates every attempt to mend ties, and then lies to its people and the world that Japan has 'never' properly apologized or compensated its victims.

8 ( +14 / -6 )

For a Japanese politician, I like the Shig. His ideas are progressive, kind of like a predecessor Ozawa, but both men are shut out of the Abe camp. Suga looks like a zombie, gloomy and depressed, but that displays safety so he is very qualified to be the next PM. It will be more of the same, yes men for the US, no men to any domestic change, occasional gaijin blame. The show must go on.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Ossan

Your arguments evaporate when you disregard reality. Both nations have received apologies and more. The 1965 Treaty between South Korea and Japan. And the 1972 Sino-Japanese Treaty of Friendship, which China reaffirmed in 1978.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_war_apology_statements_issued_by_Japan

Giving wikipedia as a source of information doesn't really help your argument because it is well known that wikipedia is not credible.

-9 ( +4 / -13 )

And he’s into model kits and UFOs too.

At least he’s doesn’t eat the sun the other elites...

3 ( +3 / -0 )

The next Japan PM need to have a strong leadership & honest.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

@vanityofvanities That’s a very good point about the opinion polls. And you’re right, since it’s elected officials from the LDP that get to decide, those polls are clearly not representative of them, or even if the LDP electorate for that matter.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@John

Japan has to improve its relations with China, India, SK, Indonesia, Russia, Iran and Turkey. 

Well, in regards to Iran, Japan really can’t, because of the sanctions that Trump put on Iran. And with China, it’s a similar situation, there’s sanctions, and there’s the fact that Japan is heavily dependent on the US for security. So there’s only so far that Japan can go in regards to its relations with other nations unfortunately.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

It doesn't that the PM of Japanland wants closer ties with China and SK. There's always some idiot LDP politician out in the sticks who says something against those countries, which they will view as Japanese national policy.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

No young leader option available ??

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I've said many times that it is time for Japan to decouple from the USA, which is in decline, and reorient towards Asia, and especially China. China is rising, and basically China is the future.

-2 ( +6 / -8 )

Ishiba is also a trainspotter and his hobbies...” He also likes to build models of warships and fighter jets.”

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

A liaison office in Tokyo and Pyongyang? What does this guy put into his green tea? lol

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Marvelous! we will have another member of the far right revisionist group Nippon Kaigi at the helm of the country.

Told you,Abe resignations will change little to none for Japan.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

drluciferToday  10:39 am JST

Ossan

Your arguments evaporate when you disregard reality. Both nations have received apologies and more. The 1965 Treaty between South Korea and Japan. And the 1972 Sino-Japanese Treaty of Friendship, which China reaffirmed in 1978.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_war_apology_statements_issued_by_Japan

Giving wikipedia as a source of information doesn't really help your argument because it is well known that wikipedia is not credible.

I suppose the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs is also "not credible"?

https://www.mofa.go.jp/j_info/japan/opinion/umezu.html

https://www.mofa.go.jp/policy/q_a/faq16.html

How about the NY Times?

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2015/08/13/world/asia/japan-ww2-shinzo-abe.html

8 ( +9 / -1 )

UFO debate invades politicians' space……2007

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-ufo/ufo-debate-invades-politicians-space-idUSN2125757420071221

A debate over flying saucers has kept Japanese politicians occupied for much of this week, ensnaring top officials and drawing a promise from the defense minister to send out the army if Godzilla goes on a rampage.

“There are debates over what makes UFOs fly, but it would be difficult to say it’s an encroachment of air space,” Defense Minister Shigeru Ishiba told a news conference Thursday.

“If Godzilla were to show up, it would be a dispatch for disaster relief.”

After this Reuters gem from 2007, with the upmost respect, I believe that Shigeru Ishiba has more than just a few pages struck together.

"The merit of the sales tax is to secure stable revenue ... but the role of the sales tax must be reviewed when we consider how to boost disposable incomes of low-income households."

One has little to do with the other, when considering simply paying employees a living wage.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

gokai_wo_manekuToday 11:54 am JST

I've said many times that it is time for Japan to decouple from the USA, which is in decline, and reorient towards Asia, and especially China. China is rising, and basically China is the future.

If China is the future then its gonna be dark , very dark, isn't it !

Have you been reading the news at all this year ?

Need some one who will decouple from China, less china means more of what is needed.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

GOOD thinking. China and S.korea too.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Might be suggesting China without CCP n SK in eclipse ie without Moon then its a bit of possiblity

0 ( +0 / -0 )

China is not the future bt Quad is plus its allies

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Dear Shigeru Ishiba,

Dozens of previous Japanese Prime Ministers have tried to get closer to S. Korea, they have given over 50 apologies. Compensation paid multiple times in the sum of billions in today money.

Our companies have been targeted by S. Koreans who want Japan to pay again, want apology again, want the 1965 aggrement as Final redone, rewrite, new deal with more money, new apology which will only be temporary if you really understand how S. Koreans think.

You can tell how bad Ishiba would be for Japan, another repeat of the mistakes of the past Prime Ministers who sign terrible deals for Japan (Plaza Accord,) who gave South Korea everything they asked for time and again, just for them to back out a few years later down the line.

It's been done already, tried already, been there, done that. What other horrible ideas you have in mind? Sign Plaza Accord 2.0? Give S. Korea another Island?

So much weakness and incompetence from this guy. At the worst time in recent history with a pandemic going on, this is what the government has to offer?

Shame!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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